Space the final frontier, these are the voyages of the Star Ship......wait wrong universe,
A long time a go in a galaxy far far away, .... dang it, wrong universe again!
Star Command was developed by Warballoon Studios and released for iOS and for Android powered devices. When playing the game, you will see the developers at WarBalloons have a wee-bit of a sense of humor, that translates well into the game.
In Star Command, you're a newly minted Captain with a snazzy outfit, that has been put in charge of one of the fleets newest ship. As the commanding officer of your vessel, you're tasked with visiting strange new places and encounters with new alien races, each with their own intentions.
After assuming the helm of your vessel, one of the first tasks is hiring on new cannon fodder....err....crew members. Each crew member that you hire on, can be assigned to different roles, Much like in the world of Star Trek, you have your Command / Tactical (Red Shirts), Science (Blue Shirts) and Engineering (Yellow Shirts). As your crew members complete tasks, whether defending the ship from intruders, repair damage or healing / reviewing fellow crew members, they will gain experience. With increases their rank, your crew members will level up, new skills are unlocked that will make your crew members more efficient and valuable.
Your vessel starts out with not only the bare minimum crew, but also the bare minimum features, leave it to Star Command not to throw in a few after market accessories! In order to survive in the unknown of deep space, you will have add new rooms, which will unlock new features for your ship and continue to upgrade their functions as you advance.
Much like hiring crew members, tokens are required to add additional rooms to your ship. Tokens are earned by completing various missions, your missions can range from defeating enemies, to holding out against what appears to be overwhelming odds. The rooms that you can add to your ship, include:
Tactical rooms, which include weapon systems or grenades for defense
Science rooms, which include medical bays or shield enhancing
Engineering rooms, which include Weapon deflectors or defense droids
Being the commanding officer in Star Command, you will explore the vastness of space. As you encounter new Alien races, you will interact with them, and depending on how you respond to them the story of the game will change.
Star Command offers the player a chance to choose their own storyline, with each decision that's made affecting the outcome of the story. So not only as a Captain you need the skills to macro manage (the story line) but you will also need the skills to micro manage many of the features of the ship, especially during combat scenarios.
The combat system, involves waiting for the weapons system to recharge (reload), once ready a flashing red icon will let you know it's time to return fire! To fire your weapons, select the charged weapon, which will bring you to the targeting screen. In order to successfully score a hit against the enemy you must line up your target acquisition, the more locked targets you get the greater your chances of inflicting a decisive blow against the enemy!
If fire fights outside of the ship aren't bad enough, you have to deal with the fire fight on board your vessel. As combat breaks out, you must also defend your ship from intruders beaming over, this involves taking way crucial tactical team members from weapons duty (slowing down your weapons recharge rates) to repeal the borders.
As damage is being taken against your ship, whether from weapons fire from the enemy vessel, but also from saboteurs that have evaded your tactical teams, going room to room knocking out vital equipment and attacking crew members, you will need to utilize your engineering team members to repair damage to critical ship systems and to the damaged ships hull. One of the most nerve racking features of the game, is if your shields drop, and the haul blows out, your crew members can be sucked out into the cold merciless void of deep space!
To ensure that your crew members aren't killed during combat, another crucial skill of a commanding officer to manage your medical teams, as fighting breaking outs, explosions from weapons fire can inflict serious harm to your crew members, and as boarding parties go room to room destroying your ships vital system, they will also attack your crew. You must dispatching your medical teams to ensure that your crewmen are being healed or revived as combat heats up.
As Captain, if the enemy gets the tactical advantage and is able to kill you, the game is over. As such you must sacrifice....I mean volunteer your crew to protect your Captain at all costs. There are parts in the story line, in which you will take on passengers, survivors and you will have to do your utmost to protect them.
Star Command is a great game, it keeps the player engaged, and having to micro and macro manage your environment, forces you to pay attention to the minute details of the world around you. Also, if you don't care about your crew, you can take on damage and once the haul blows out, you watch them being sucked into space....but you're not that kind of Captain are you?
Pros - Great level of detail in commanding your ship, changing story modes, references to pop sci-fi and gaming
Cons - The game can feel short, a couple of hours and you should be able to work through the story mode.
Star Command can be downloaded from the Itunes Store or through Google Play, depending on your mobile devices OS.