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Laser Days: Gratuitous Space Battles 2

Gratuitous, spectacular, fabulous

The conflicts in Gratuitous Space Battles 2 are certainly deserving of the adjective applied in the game's title but the new video below brings several other descriptives to mind. 'Colourful', 'cunning', 'extravagant', 'fabulous' and more besides. Like it's predecessor, GSB 2 is a game in which players construct fleets, position them and then watch as they do battle. Remember the text crawl that sucked all the excitement out of you like a joy vampire at the beginning of The Phantom Menace? "The taxation of trade routes to outlying starsystems is in dispute", says Star Wars. GSB says, "BOY HOWDY THE PURPLE SHIPS ARE SHOOTING THE EVER-LIVING CRAP OUT OF THE GREEN SHIPS YOWZERS!"

As the title suggests, it's a game in which spaceships criss-cross the galaxy with hot laser death purely because that is what they are supposed to do.

I'm keen to get my hands on this. As mentioned in the video, many of the changes on show here are cosmetic, but when a game is about watching shit-hot space war, that's no bad thing. When the ship goes down ('down' is actually North East in space) at 5.57, the aftermath is quietly beautiful. Smoke, flames and the constancy of lasers. I'm something of a sentimentalist and despite the gratuitous nature of it all, I can imagine finding the plight of the last ship in a once proud fleet rather a sad thing to see.

Sombre Space Battles. That's the ticket. Not sure when SSB will be released but GSB 2 will hopefully be with us before the end of the year.

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Adam Smith


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