Proper old-school space opera
If real-world military sims like White Death don't hold much appeal for you, then this space-bound game which mixes exploration, diplomacy and strategy might be more your cup of tea. It's obviously dated now, thanks to its age, but it remains a complex and challenging slice of entertainment that deserves to be dug out from the past. The basic aim of the game is galactic domination, with players creating and expanding their civilisation from humble beginnings as a lone dot in the sky, to a vast and powerful collection of planets that rules the stars. In typical strategy game fashion, you build ships, conduct research into various technologies, build up your fleets and take on your enemies in the depths of space. Be warned though, this is pretty hardcore stuff, full of fairly serious economic considerations as well as the more obviously fun stuff. However, don't let this put you off as if you are in the right frame of mind, this is seriously addictive stuff, not to mention challenging. Your AI opponents are cunning foes and put up a stiff fight, refusing to let everything go your way and you'll need to use cunning and tactics if you are to see your civilisation become dominant. There are heaps of events and options to explore and the game is highly dynamic, keeping you on your toes the whole time with new situations to respond to. The game's visuals and sound are obviously rather limited but don't let this put you off as the core gameplay is compelling and immensely enjoyable. If you've played games like Starcraft and Fragile Allegiance, then this is a great old-school take on the genre and which is well worth playing.