After allowing us to subsist on the merest scraps of information about the recently revealed iPad-bound Sid Meier’s Starships, devs Firaxis are letting it all hang out at PAX South. At a panel there, Uncle Sid himself played through Starships live, showing off a big chunk of gameplay.
When we scrutinized the few available screenshots a couple of weeks back, some PT readers saw the influence of Ace Patrol, Sid Meier’s Pirates, and Civilization. Clearly, Starships is borrowing ideas from those games, but after watching the video, it’s not easily pigeon-holed as a spiritual successor to any of those. Starships is most definitely its own freaky space animal.
What really grabbed my attention in this video is the “Shore Leave” mechanic (jump to around the 45-minute mark to see that specifically) — it’s a totally fresh approach to the way turn-based games play. Your crew’s stamina is a push-your-luck system: you can take on almost as many missions as you like, but the further you push your crew, the worse they perform in combat. When you grant your crew shore leave, the other empires in the game play their turns. That’s a very cool idea.
The whole video is after the jump. I’ve been in touch with 2K about release dates and the possibility of an Android port — I’ll hear back about that soon, hopefully.
I meant to get this up yesterday but I’ve been finishing my taxes instead. Being an adult is the worst. In the Star Trek timeline, aren’t we supposed to be living in a post-scarcity utopia by now? Is this all Gary Seven‘s fault?
Owen here, covering Out Tonight while Dave gallivants around San Francisco on a press trip. Or at least, that’s what he told me he was doing. Dave, you better not be lollygagging out on the Best Coast. No lollygagging, Dave.
This week’s releases are very, very sexy, people: Slitherine’s early modern warfare game Pike & Shot is making the jump from PC to iPad tomorrow. Not tonight, strictly speaking — Slitherine will pull the release lever tomorrow morning, but I’ll be sure to let you know when that is.
There are other releases worth looking at for the night owls who want to watch the App Store tick over at midnight. Let’s chat about ‘em and watch videos after the jump.
Tactical action game Space Marshals has been one of 2015’s first hits: it scored an editor’s choice on the App Store and got a respectable 3 out of 5 from us, and cultivated a dedicating following amongst some PT regulars. When the game launched, it promised more episodes of content in the future and Swedish devs Pixelbite have not been idle on that front.
Pixelbite told me today that Chapter 2 of Space Marshal Burt’s quest to hunt down Escaped Space Felons (great name for a bend) will be out in March, and it will be a free update to existing owners of the game. I pestered them for some screenshots of the new content and they’ve kindly obliged us.
After the break, six more screenshots of Space Marshals Chapter 2, plus the trailer. Read Davy’s review, while you’re at it.
The latest game from 100 Rogues and Empire designer Keith Burgun has been out for Android since September, but a long stretch in iOS approval purgatory has delayed its launch for the other side of the house. Burgun’s Dinofarm Games beat their heads bloody against a technical problem with the game that didn’t play nicely with iOS 8 (details here if you enjoy analyzing moot software dilemmas) but last week I was told that the problem has been cracked. Expect Auro on iOS in the next week or so.
Like all Burgun titles, Auro is built around a set of unique gameplay mechanics. It’s a tactical puzzler broadly similar to last year’s masterful Hoplite; instead of direct attacks, you have to bump enemies off of the playing board with a variety of spells at your disposal, with every level spawning more (and nastier) opponents. I’ve always thought of it as occult sumo wrestling, which is absolutely something I’d upgrade my Sky Sports package to watch.
You can pick Auro up on Android right now, and we’ll be sure to let you know when it lands on iOS. There’s a trailer below.
Up until now we’ve only seen screenshots of Mi-Clos Studio’s forthcoming expanded edition of Out There, but today we can see it in motion and hear it, too. Besides the overhauled graphics engine and the new content, Omega Edition will feature a moody electronic soundtrack composed by Siddhartha Barnhoorn — surely one of the greatest names in games development, right up there with Bear Trickey.
You can get early access to the PC, Linux, or Mac editions of Out There Omega Edition later today when it goes live on the Humble Store — buying a desktop version will net you a free Android version as well. The mobile editions will be out “soon”.
The original Mushroom Wars did what many thought–and still think–is impossible. It created a viable, and enjoyable, real-time-strategy experience on a touch screen. Today, the sequel to Mushroom Wars has arrived for iOS Universal and it takes the fungal feuding to space.
Mushroom Wars: Space! (their exclamation point, not mine) continues the story of the original game with a single player campaign that spans more than fifty new missions. It also has an improved multiplayer mode that allows for battles with up to 3 other people. Other than that, it appears to be much of the same which isn’t a terrible thing when the original was a pretty damn good game.
Mushroom Wars: Space is available right now for iOS Universal and is free to download. The previous game had a bunch of IAP, but Clancy didn’t complain about it so I’m not sure that it’s an issue. Proceed at your own risk. It should be coming out for Android shortly.
Kerry Batts is a busy individual. Every year he puts out a new version of Pro Strategy Football that manages, somehow, to improve upon the year before. When PSF 2014 came out in late October, one of the features he wished to add was a career mode, in which you would be able to follow teams and players through the years. It was originally intended to be included as IAP in the PSF 2014 app, but the scope became a bit overwhelming, and thus we now have Pro Strategy Football Career as a separate iOS Universal app.
It makes sense, actually, because PSF Career is a completely different animal than PSF 2014. If you want to coach individual games, watch seasons unfold, or play against your friends, then PSF 2014 is the right fit. PSF Career lets you focus on one team and guide them through drafts, player aging, trades, and more over the course of many years. All the stats are trackable, for teams and for players, and the screenshots we’ve been sent all look like an Excel spreadsheet that will make any stat geek’s head explode.
You can nab PSF Career for $3 right now on the App Store (20% off), or if PSF 2014 sounds more like your cup of tea, you can get that for $5. Videos after the break.