Sid Meier and Firaxis’ new thing, Starships, was announced last week, but all we got to see was a cinematic. Fortunately, Unca Sid did a talk at PAX South a couple of days back, in which he showed off the game proper. Those who could not drag themselves to a sweaty hall in Texas may now be similarly indulged. There are some bits and pieces of Civ in there – perhaps striving for commonality with Beyond Earth, which it shares a setting/fiction with – but primarily it’s about customising spaceships then making ’em fight.
Meier also tackles the thorny question “how do you put maps in space?” and clarifies that people who call themselves ‘marauders’ don’t tend to be terribly friendly.
The Starships footage kicks off at around the 30 minute mark, but the more patient view can enjoy a whole 50 minutes of Sidchat.
It’s certainly not another case of Civ V with knobs on, at any rate. There’s even a tiny little bit of XCOM in there, if I’m not totally mistaken. I think I’m going to have to play it myself to get my head around it, but I’m certainly feeling the pull. Not sure about asteroid fields making (in)convenient pathways – it kind of rubs the ‘hey this isn’t really 3D space’ aspect in my face a little, but we’ll see. I’d much rather something that feels good than is totally explicable.
I am also very much down with stealthy spaceships. This is due on tablets as well, but there seems to be quite a bit going on it. I’m not feeling the ‘mobile game upscaled to PC’ anxiety just yet. Obviously there is some wariness after Beyond Earth proved to be such a conservative game, but Firaxis trying something different worked out pretty damn well last time they tried it.
‘Spring 2015’ is the release window, so hopefully all will be revealed soon.