Each colony starts out with a bridge and one…possibly two sub-modules on the planet. It’s up to you to staff the bridge so that someone is manning the energy and oxygen collection systems. This is important as you need energy to power the various components of the colony and the inhabitants need oxygen to breathe (although you may sometimes want to deny them the need when they act up). There is also a medical station that preps the colony’s medical bays in case one of your colonists has an accident or catches a disease of some sort. Each colonist can be assigned a primary and a secondary task. This is pretty helpful if you have one colonist who is strong in multiple areas and allows you to create overlapping assignments. This is helpful when you have minor tasks like cleaning up the base that don’t need to be constantly performed.
Once you have your station up and running, you now have to explore the planet for resources. You explore the planet by placing light beacons around your base. Each beacon reveals a bit of the map so you will have to chain them together to get a full picture of what is around your base. I thought this was a good idea since you can quickly explore the boundaries of the map without having to send one of your colonists out (they aren’t exactly quick in the space suits). Once you have located resources, you will need to setup mining rigs specific to that resource. The final step is to staff the mining resource with one of your colonists or an android. Remember those skills I talked about before? Well, this is where they come in to play, as you will need to make sure you have someone on staff that knows how to operate the equipment in order to utilize that expensive mining rig you just purchased. Once you’ve got everything up and resources flow into the base, life is good.Space Colony
provides users with three different colony building modes. There is a Sandbox mode where players start with a bare planet and can build whatever base they want to. The single player mode has you following the career of Venus Jones as she explores the galaxy for Blackwater Industries. The final mode is the galaxy mode which has you working as an independent contractor building colonies for spec. The galaxy mode has three sub-modes: economic, military, and tourist; so you have some choice in how you want to conquer the galaxy. The three modes also guarantee that you won’t run out of things to do any time soon. When you finally get done with those modes, you can use the content creation tools to build your own campaigns and missions. To say that you get your money’s worth is an understatement.
The graphics in Space Colony
are solid and have a nice, fun feel to them. The artists at Firefly did a great job of creating a bright world for your colonists to live in. There are a lot of cool little details in the game (each colonist has their own bed spread) and the attention to detail is excellent. The animations are also pretty solid for the genre.
There are some decent CGI sequences between missions but they aren’t going to cause Blizzard to lose any sleep.
The sound is one of the best and worst parts of the game. The game features a lot of great sounds, from the voices of the characters to the exceedingly good soundtrack. If you don’t dig the soundtrack, then you can copy your MP3 files over to the directory where you installed the game and play your own tunes. This is a cool feature but it would have been nice to have it pick up files from an existing MP3 directory so you don’t need multiple copies of a file. You also have to be impressed that the game features over 20,000 lines of spoken dialog.
Page 2 of 3