Star Control II

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Star Control II, the sequel to the original Star Control, is, in general, a space adventure game. It was a milestone for non-linear gaming and an undeniable influence on modern space travel games such as Homeworld; many consider it one of the best computer games of all time. The player assumes the role of the captain of a single starship wandering a detailed environment of solar systems, gradually gathering information and resources in order to defeat a mysterious and implacable enemy.

It is difficult to pin SC2 down to a single genre; it contains elements of exploration, scavenging, diplomacy, role-playing, and combat, blended together seamlessly. Intense, real-time, ship-to-ship melee is sprinkled throughout your interstellar travels. The Flagship can be outfitted with various modules to change and improve how it functions, as well as bolstering its effectiveness in battle. The meat of the game, however, is information gathering and the acquiring of unique inventory items through conversation and exploration to unravel the numerous mysteries of space.

Game play is divided into six basic modes:

  • Conversation - Interact with other sentient species; Learn from them, trade with them, and form alliances (or attack them).
  • Solar system exploration - Navigate solar systems with your flagship, exploring the various planets and moons, while contacting or avoiding other ships in the region.
  • Planetary exploration - Control the Planet Lander to collect minerals and biological data while avoiding earthquakes, hotspots, lightning, and aggressive life forms.
  • HyperSpace travel - Travel from star to star in HyperSpace (and later, QuasiSpace) while being chased by unidentifiable alien ships, represented as gravity wells.
  • Flagship/fleet management - Spend your accumulated Resource units (RUs). Outfit your flagship for whatever lies ahead. Construct a fleet of up to 12 escort ships. Add crew and fuel to you fleet.
  • Space combat - The most exciting part of the game! Fly your armada against alien ships in an all-out brawl to the death.

Created by Toys For Bob, Star Control II was released for the PC in 1992, and the 3DO in 1994. The 3DO port included remixed music, spoken dialogue, and 3D-rendered cut scenes, among other version differences. The Ur-Quan Masters source code is derived from the 3DO code, as the original PC source was lost.