Simulation 2000 Windows Pregaming Science Life simulation Indie Strategy Modern

Hacking game extraordinaire with a futuristic storytelling

Uplink changed everything about hacking games when it first came out. Sure, there were hacking sims done before this one cape, but generally they were more like lock cracking minigames, pushing some puzzles toward you that required attention and at times thinking outside the box, thinking laterally. But Uplink brought so much more to the table: there was a story that made sense behind your scheming and lifting of classified information, there was pressure, there were puzzles that involved you not only at a technical level, but involved you in the world of the game. In terms of hacking missions, there was also so much more variety, from data stealing, to sabotage, to money laundering, to data deletion and so much more. Basically the amount of work that was possible within the game was just astounding. To add spice, later on in the game there were stages that allowed you to gamble on the the stock market, a feat that was made easier by your, well, “intermissions” in some of the buy ins and sell outs. So, when you feel like going full time into cybercrime, Uplink is the way to go, afresh, technically proficient game, and one that really changed the amount such a puzzler could get through to the player. Just so you can do a comparison go play Hacker, an older and simpler game of hacking.

A hacker's game

This hacking simulation video game released by Introversion Software in 2001 is a cool depiction of a hacker's environment. The gameplay consists of the player creating and loging into a fictional server, account that makes the players profile, after which an special operating system is downloaded that has the basic tools for hacking into the test server, the first quest e-mailed to you. The interface is neat, you have many of the stuff you would find on a normal computer and beyond. A task manager, a commands console, an e-mail client, a hard-drive explorer, a hardware viewer, process indicators and resource monitors, a main screen, shortcuts to the world internet map, your bank accounts interface and many more. The main goal is to accomplish as many quests as you can using techniques and tools aquired from the "Uplink Network" which is supposed to be the medium between you (the hacker payed for carrying out tasks) and your contractors. The Uplink Network has several entries which include the Uplink's software and hardware market, task lists, server lists, test servers and others. The standard procedure is that you pick up quests from the uplink network, of whose prices you can negotiate with the contractor after which you can accept or decline the task and the associated payment, after which the details are e-mailed to you. The quests range from deleting files from remote servers, or stealing files that hold important research data, to faking ID's and changing criminal records. When you usually carry out a task you must assure your own safety, by means of hoping through multiple servers on the world map and erasing the logs from the hacked servers after completion. The complexity of illegally entering a server vary from using dictionary brute force attacks, bypassing firewalls to voice synthesizers and key-code decryption. After several tasks you will feel the need to upgrade your hardware and software, who's versions and capabilities differ also in price. The need of upgrade is because the system is limited to running only a number of software programs at once, each taking a certain amount of CPU power, the more and complex the software is, the longer it will take for it to accomplish it's task. Overall, this is a great hacking simulation game and you might find yourself spending hours trying to get that CPU that you've long spotted on the Uplink Network Market.

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