Universal Combat

Action 2004 Windows 3000AD Shooter Futuristic Simulation

Just keeping driving on by

Universal Combat is the most recent entry in the Battlecruiser series of science fiction combat games but unfortunately it's a far cry from the best of the genre such as Freelancer and X-Wing, so it's best avoided. Although this is slightly more accessible than previous offerings, it still suffers from an abundance of tiny details which get in the way of any actual fun as well as a heap of other issues. In theory this one strips out a lot of the micromanagement and promises a more action-oriented experience, presenting the player with the tantalizing idea of being able to explore a vast universe from the deck of your own cruiser, while engaging in epic space battles, dog fights, ground skirmishes, and even naval conflicts, all while issuing orders like a real-life Jame Kirk. You get to create your own character from a set of 12 races and then venture out into the universe where more than 250 planets await, each with lots of things to discover, claim, and destroy. So, this all sounds well and good on paper and makes for a very intriguing setup. However, pick this up and you'll find the truth is very different. There's simply nothing here which is implemented or designed well, and as nothing is explained, it's a very difficult game to get into. As such, most gamers are likely to tune out well before they've ever done anything, but to do so isn't a bad idea, as if you do stick with it, you'll curse the frustrating controls, the tedious gameplay and all the other myriad problems which make this a real turkey.

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