Giving Voice To The Void: Ancient Space

Earlier today, I exposed one gaping hole in my nerd-knowledge – I didn’t watch a single episode of Star Trek until 2011. I knew that Kirk ladied his way around the galaxy and that Patrick Stewart made things just so, like a spacefaring Kiping, but I hadn’t actually seen them in action. Picard was nothing but a facepalm to me. A press release from Paradox threatens to tear my remaining nerd cred to bits. It contains an announcement for an RTS, Ancient Space, made by CreativeForge, who you may remember as creators of the intriguing Hard West, currently Kickstarting. Ancient Space is the studio’s previous game and it’s due out later this year. Details and sci-fi actor studded voice cast below.

It’s a narrative-heavy RTS, which left me hoping for live action C&C style video sequences, but since I’ve got a list with the voice cast on here, I don’t think that’s the case. First, a few details about the game:

New Frontiers, Classic Gameplay: Build, maintain, upgrade, and strategically command a multitude of ships in tactical battles and missions, facing aliens, pirates, and the unknown

An Explosive Space Opera: A compelling story, performed by a stellar cast, follows the player as the fleet tackles questions of humanity and science in an epic single-player campaign

Live with Your Choices: Each mission advances the plot, and introduces new challenges to be met by choosing the right crew and the right upgrades for the job

I’ll need to see more before I can begin to predict whether this is my sort of RTS. That would be slow-paced and strategic rather than click-happy, and a quick glance at the website suggests I might be in luck.

Ancient Space features real time strategic starship battles that encourages tactical maneuvering. In time honored RTS tradition, you build and upgrade your fleet as you complete mission objectives and gather resources which allow you to progress further into the game. Chart your approach – from defense to offense and everything in between such as escort and stealth missions.

Here’s the voice cast, along with my admissions of shame:

John Billingsley (Star Trek: Enterprise, True Blood)
Aaron Douglas (Battlestar Galactica)
Ron Glass (Firefly)
Richard Gunn (Dark Angel)
Dina Meyer (Starship Troopers, Star Trek: Nemesis, Saw)
Dwight Schultz (Star Trek: The Next Generation, Star Trek: Voyager)

Well, straight away you can remove all the Star Trek. Haven’t seen ’em, won’t be getting round it for a good long while. I have seen Galactica and enjoyed it a lot, but I still had to check who Aaron Douglas played. He was Tyrol – THE CHIEF WHO WAS NOT A MASTER.

I’ve never seen Dark Angel but I have seen Starship Troopers and Saw. In the former, Dina Meyer played Dizzy Flores, who was “the quarterback for the Buenos Aires fieldball team”, according to the Starship Troopers Wiki. Bugs ate her. In Saw, she was an investigator and her ribs cracked into bits in one of the later films because that is what those films are about.

I have seen True Blood but don’t remember Billingsley’s coroner character. Perhaps he wasn’t in the first season, which proved to be plenty enough vampire for my tastes.

The big one, of course, is Ron Glass.

I’ve never seen Firefly.

57 Comments

  1. rexx.sabotage says:

    I am not angry with you

    but, I am disappointed.

    • Taidan says:

      Star Trek is one of the big yardsticks by which I cast judgement upon the mortals that surround me.

      “I like Star Trek” then becomes a question of the order of preference of series and movies. There are many ways to fail this test, and in the process reveal yourself to be a tasteless, gibbering idiot.

      “I do not like Star Trek” must be justified with a rational answer. Most replies will reveal in the subject a profound lack of character or intellect, but there are exceptions that may yet allow you to retain my valued respect.

      “I have not seen Star Trek”, the rarest answer of all, is a vile revelation that I am communing with an uncultured barbarian. If I detect an ounce of pride in this statement of willful ignorance, then my impression will be that one is clearly whack with poo-brain and the subject’s final fate shall be banishment to Hipster Island, when the day of Final Judgement is upon us.

      • Tetragrammaton says:

        I dislike Star Trek. I find it’s simplistic and often regressive moralizing cloying. It’s flat characters and sterile world building are uninspired and boring. And it’s fixation on Shakespeare indulgent and limiting.
        Jadzia Dax however, is a fox.

        • Premium User Badge

          tigerfort says:

          The morality of the assorted Star Trek series becomes much more explicable once you realise that the Federation Kirk, Picard, etc, are serving behaves as though it is the one Blake and his crew are rebelling against.

          The incoherent worldbuilding and nonscience also annoyed the cr*p out of me.

      • RARARA says:

        Babylon 5 will always be better.

  2. Thurgret says:

    I mentioned Nexus: The Jupiter Incident in another comment just earlier, and I wonder, might this scratch that particular itch? Minus the unavoidable stealth mission, because I hated that. It looks like it could.

    Also, beyond happy at the number of space games cropping up – and at the apparent quality of a good number of them, though I wish some of the trashy ones on Steam didn’t exist, because all they do is drag the entire space-gamey genre down a bit.

    Edited to add:

    FOR SHAME.

  3. FriendlyFire says:

    I can understand not seeing/caring about Enterprise, but no TNG? For shame, Adam.

    • Vandelay says:

      I’ve been re-watching TNG recently and it fills me with lots of funny nostalgia feels. It has been some time since I have watched, bar the odd episode here and there, so it is great to re-experience it all again.

      Having said that, I’m not actually sure how good it really was and if I would actually like it if I was watching it for the first time. Ignoring the fact that the first 2 seasons are a mix of abysmal and okay, there is a lot of blandness to the show, even when it is at its best. Whilst watching it, I can’t help but feel it is almost like one of those Sunday night dramas that inexplicably gets massive viewing figures, but in space. I just finished watching season 5 and it really feels as if it has found a very safe groove that it doesn’t want to deviate from. I understand that the last couple of seasons do decent in quality, but I think a little bit of absurdism might be welcome to shake things up a bit (I recall it definitely delivers on that.)

      What is great about it though, is it fully embraces its uncoolness. I love it for that. From its very clear ideals to its poker nights, TNG is never ashamed of what it is. The band of likable characters (besides Troi and anyone with the surname Crusher,) will always keep me watching.

      I have also kicked off a run through of DS9, a show that I haven’t watched in an even longer time. I’ve always suspected that it is the Star Trek show I would like the most and it is looking like that might well be true. I am coming up to about half way through season 2 and having a great time (except for the last few episodes, particularly Rivals and Second Sight.) What is even better, is that I can barely remember anything about the show, even though I’m sure I watched most of it when it originally aired on BBC.

      Question is, do I dare continue this voyage to the other Star Trek series?

      • Napalm Sushi says:

        My earliest memories of TNG were forged by context-devoid glimpses of it caught during teatime after playing Alien Breed and Uridium 2 on my brother’s Amiga, with a naive assumption that any such show that followed CBBC’s timeslot must lie in the same “adult sci-fi” category as Aliens or Predator. As such, those memories are of a considerably darker and more intense show than I later discovered it to actually be.

        Come to think of it, I’d be quite interested to see that show now.

      • malkav11 says:

        No. TNG and DS9 are the only Star Trek series that hold up (and for my tastes, the darker tone and more serial narrative of DS9 make the latter the clear best of the franchise). The original has its moments but it’s painfully 60s and doesn’t hold up nearly as well as The Prisoner or early Doctor Who overall. Voyager also has its moments but is painfully schizophrenic and not infrequently stupid. As far as I can tell, Enterprise never managed to be worth watching for anyone but the diehard. Even the movies have kinda sucked for a while, although YMMV about the reboots. I liked ’em, but someone who got on better with original Trek might have some bones to pick.

        • Great Cthulhu says:

          I’m currently nearly at the end of watching all of Star Trek (except for the horrible non-canon Animated Series). I have to say that I found Voyager to be much more enjoyable than I remembered it being. Just don’t think too much about things like how the supposedly open-minded Federation treats AIs, how mobile holograms are basically superior to everything and everyone, etc.

          I also rather enjoyed the first two seasons of Enterprise. Season 3 is full of stupid however. Still enjoyable enough for me not to rage-quit, but definitely a downward turn.

      • db48x says:

        “The Measure of a Man” in the second season cements TNG’s place in the rolls of worthy SF.

        • Kaeoschassis says:

          Absolutely, 100%.
          It’s funny, I was just having A.I. musings tonight and then I get on and see this comment.
          On the whole, TNG is my #1 of the lot. I’m not exactly a fanatic, but I’ve watched them all and come back to TNG more than once.

  4. Ieolus says:

    Yes Billingsley was in the first season, but it was brief appearances. He was much bigger in season two when Michelle Forbes (Ensign Ro in Star Trek:TNG, Admiral Cain in BSG) came to town. I won’t spoil it for ya.

    Oh, and for G-d’s sake, go watch Star Trek!

  5. Wednesday says:

    What?…What?

    WHAT?!

    GTFO

  6. Thankmar says:

    TNG is absolutely unique in the way in puts diplomatics and being without prejudice above everything else. Its sometimes a little to didactical, but it shows how dull conflict is created and solved in other fictions. Thats the reason one should watch it.

  7. derbefrier says:

    TNG is awesome the other series have their moments but TNG is by far my favorite so go watch it all…now.

  8. Heretic7 says:

    I grew up watching TNG waking up at 5 o’clock in the morning just to watch it (yeah my countrys channels are not into sci fi much) so I am a Picard guy but my favorite show by far is Babylon 5 . Tell you have watched it (and didn’t stop to the dreadful first season).

  9. Geebs says:

    I am astonished that nobody mentioned the H-word. This looks pretty sweet, would love to hear more about the strategic tactics and tactical strategy.

    • toastie says:

      An ancient comment, buried in the sand.

    • Llewyn says:

      “Howling”? I mean, Dwight Schultz, for goodness’ sake. I hadn’t realised until now quite what a lengthy list of game voice credits ol’ Murdoch has, from Fallout 2 onwards.

      • CookPassBabtridge says:

        :(

        Am I now old enough that young people don’t know who Murdoch from the original A-Team is?

        :(

        • Llewyn says:

          Not only young people, apparently, but also the supposedly middle-aged people who write this magaz… erm, blog.

      • frightlever says:

        Love that guy. His character on ST was great, though how someone that broken got into Star Fleet is beyond me.

  10. theschap says:

    I read “Dwight Schultz” 3 times before it stopped saying “Dwight Schrute”.

  11. Hanban says:

    Please, fill the void in my heart! You must be good!

  12. CookPassBabtridge says:

    I am disgusted.

    Dwight Schultz is MURDOCH FROM THE A-TEAM WHO DID A BIT PART IN TNG. “Can you smell Ammonia?”.

    If you don’t get that reference, then we cannot be friends and I am taking back all my Amiga 500 games I lent you. And that p()rn mag.

    • Geebs says:

      My ST games with 16 colours are just as good as yours! Epic runs at 8fps on the ST, not 7.5 like on the Amiga!

      My…..my…..

      MY FUNCTION KEYS ARE LOZENGE SHAPED

      *sob*

      • CookPassBabtridge says:

        Ahhh 16 bit home computer wars :) My friend had an ST. How we argued. I won on sound chip, he won on buttery smooth Prince of Persia animations.

        His joystick was lime green and pink. I won on joysticks. No matter what brand I owned.

  13. Keyrock says:

    Adam, I think you need to hand over your nerd card. You haven’t earned it. You’ve got work to do before we will consider accepting you back.

  14. Corb says:

    “I’ve never seen Firefly.”
    You have exactly 10 minutes before the inquisition torches down your house for heresy >.>

    Not really, we love you anyway. I’m sure there are plenty of people near you who would be more than happy to tie you to the sofa and make you marathon it clockwerk orange style. :P

    As far as the game? YUUUUUUUSSS, you have my attention.

  15. c-Row says:

    This is an outrage!

  16. SyberSmoke says:

    Dear gods man…where have you been living…under a rock…in a cave…30km under the earths crust! Go watch Firefly…find it on Netflix, Watch the series then the movie…Go NOW and DO IT!!!

  17. DrManhatten says:

    Shame on you for not watching Firefly. And Dwight Schultz is probably more remembered as Murdock in A-Team than his few brief guest star appearance in TNG and the awful awful Startrek Voyager

  18. asadlittlepotato says:

    Kirk does not lady around, you monster.

  19. Crafter says:

    Between this and Planetary Annihilation, it looks like RTS is not ready to die just yet.

  20. Themadcow says:

    Meh, citing Schultz as a Trek actor instead of for the A-Team is criminal. Oh, and Dirk Benedict was the definitive Starbuck – stick that in your pipe, 90s emo nerds.

    • grenadeh says:

      Explain again how 90s emo nerds relates in any way to 2000’s BSG fans?

      And no, Sackhoff destroys him as does every other aspect of modern BSG destroy everything about the original. So, so bad. So terribly bad.

      Remember folks, 38 cylon fighters can destroy a Battlestar in 5 minutes.

  21. Ejia says:

    I will defend Voyager with my life.

    Mainly because I think the ship looks like a pretty spoon and its nacelles do that cool bendy thing.

    • mr.black says:

      ..Same goes for 7/9!

      :rimshot:

      • Keyrock says:

        /puts on flame resistant suit

        Jadzia Dax > Seven of Nine

        • Sleepy Will says:

          Thank-you! You’ve just proven that I am not the only one!!! Now to find my friends from 15 years ago to gloat and claim my Mars Bar!

        • Jonfon says:

          Ye aren’t the only ones.

          Jadzia had actual character to her.

          7/9 was an awful ‘character’.

          • grenadeh says:

            False. Dax was a boring, boring character from the perspective of any actual writing. Seven of Nine destroys him in all ways.

  22. mr.black says:

    Dwight Schultz was (among more recognisable roles like Reg Barcley from ST TNG and some dude from A-team) also Hakunin, the shaman from Fallout 2 and loads of other interesting voice acting roles – Navigator Presley from ME, Totenkopf from recent Wolfenstein, FF, Baldurs gate… loads of roles.

    …And solely now I remembered to take a look at other comments. I’m in sync with hive mind – everything others criticised – I wrote!

  23. frightlever says:

    Ron Glass, as in Detective Ron Harris from Barney Miller. Loved Barney Miller. They used to show it late night on ITV. Ron shows up about 5:40

  24. grenadeh says:

    If you haven’t seen a single episode of the 726 episodes of Star Trek, you don’t “have” any nerd cred in the first place.

    I don’t care if you know the script of every. Dr. Who episode by heart.