Star Control

Stryker: Star Control 2 is one of the most celebrated, critically acclaimed, popular PC games ever made. Star Control, on the Sega Genesis is… um… less so. It has the potential to be a decent strategy game, but everything is severely hampered by an interface that makes it kind of hard to see what you’re doing, which in turn makes it hard to move your ships where you want them to be, which then makes any kind of strategic planning an exercise in futility. Moving your fleet across the map to block an enemy, only to discover you’ve actually traveled down a dead end and doomed your bases is the kind of thing that gets old pretty fast.

The addition of shooter-style gameplay to the ship battles adds some excitement and twitch action to the mix, but is undermined by spotty control and lack of balance. Bigger, more expensive ships almost always win, making most the skirmishes a foregone conclusion and also avoiding what could have been an additional dynamic to the strategy by having some ships with specific strengths or weaknesses to others. These battles have all the suspense of Detroit Lions football in December.

Star Control000

Yeah, you try to figure out what the hell’s going on.

Brad: Back in 2001, Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Brian Giles was asked what he thought of his team signing the washed-up Ramon Martinez. Always one with a quick, witty reply (and no doubt also strugling to find anything remotely positive to say about the guy), Giles replied “His brother’s Pedro,” indicating that the only thing the guy really had going for him was being related to Boston’s perrenial All-Star, Pedro Martinez. That’s kind of how I feel about this game – It’s sequel is Star Control 2.

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