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Star Trek: Legacy

By Mayur Bhatia | Published 01 Mar 2007 16:45 IST
Star Trek: Legacy

Only for Star Trek buffs...

After we got a taste of Star Trek: Bridge Commander, Star Trek: Legacy comes in to take a place in the list of the few space combat games. You play the role of a starship commander controlling your ship in third person; however, you can give orders or switch to any ship in your fleet. Star Trek freaks will ogle over the game's main features, one of them being the original voice cast for all the five captains of Star Trek. That's nice and all, but the game itself turns out to be something else...

The story starts off with the search for a missing Vulcan scientist, which, of course leads to the usual bad guys you have to fight off. As the story progresses, you will find yourself exchanging bullets with Klingons, Romulans, and Borg ships. Apart from "annihilate all enemies," there's the occasional mission to tow or baby-sit friendly ships/planets to keep things interesting.

The graphics are decent for a DX9 game; you won't be complaining on this front at any point. The ships have a good amount of detail, too. However, the physics is where the game comes out wrong. The collision detection is amateurish at best; you will often see pieces of debris pass right through each other or through ships-and that's only the start of the overall quirks of the game.

Rating: 3/10 
Developer: Bethesda Softworks 
Publisher: Ubisoft 
Distributor: E-Xpress Interactive
Price: Rs 1,299 

Moving from materialistic things to the core of any game-raw fun-Star Trek: Legacy turns out quite disappointing. It starts right when you look at the Readme; you know they messed it up the moment you look at the section titled "Control Updates," which corrects the controls printed in the manual. Just when you think the Readme fixed things, you are welcomed with no option to remap your keys. This is a pain in the behind, considering the game has a huge number of controls. Add to that the absolutely horrid controls for your ship, plus there's no way to get the camera to lock behind your ship. Trying to get used to the controls itself will take off a decent chunk of your time. You're forced to control both the camera and the ship's movement in addition to targeting and firing.

The adrenaline level in dogfights is extremely low, with most ships turning around at a snail's pace. You could place a weight on the [A] key and go take a shower while your ship makes a 180 turn. Granted, these are battleships you are controlling and not fighters, but it's a game-and we don't really need to know that battleships take an eternity to turn around. This seriously affects the fights you encounter, even the epic large battles.

Star Trek: Legacy has a lot of potential, but it looks like the devs hurried the game to make the release date.


True to the simulation mantra
Race, a simulation game based on the FIA WTCC championships lets you experience the WTCC 2006 championship seasons. Everything a simulation fanatic could possibly ask for is crammed into this game-in addition to the rules, the tracks and the cars, the drivers will also appear familiar to anyone following the WTCC craze. Yes, that also includes 2005 WTCC championAndy Priaulx. Race goes to great lengths to ensure that players experience as much realism as possible; this includes the penalty weight system in championship mode and a realistic damage system where your cars crumble, break and bend. Even debris hitting your car can damage it, so don't go full speed ahead in glee, and watch out when you see the cars ahead of you encounter a nasty accident.

You can play Race mainly in the Quick Race, Championship and Race Weekend modes. The two additional modes-Driver Duel and Time Attack-add a bit of spice to the game, despite being a bit similar. And of course, there's multiplayer where up to 26 players can race with each other.

Rating: 7/10 
Developer: SimBin 
Publisher: Eidos 
Distributor: E-Xpress Interactive
Price: Rs 699 

Moving to the core of the game-simulation-Race does it extremely well; no two cars feel the same when driving, and the amount of flexibility to customise your cars is simply huge. Even expert tuners will be impressed at the large amount of tuning in Race; you can even customise each tire and its height individually! Even in-game, small factors matter-your windshield could get smudged by the weather or dirt, and stones could smash it.

The graphics aren't overly detailed, but they feel smooth to look at and won't hamper your playing experience. As already implied before, the physics are awesome; any realistic game should pay attention to physics, and Race has pinpointed its every aspect.

The amount of difficulty options in Race brings even the toughest of the skilled players down to their knees, however novice gamers will have some difficulty getting used to the game. SimBin has taken this into account and even included mouse steering for players finding controlling with the keyboard too difficult.

Race is a great game with few quirks, one of them that you can't see where your steering wheel is pointed when controlling your car with a mouse in chase cam. Also be warned that the game comes with Steam, which means you will need an internet connection at least once to be able to play even in single player mode. Anyone who has ever used Steam can testify to its ability to cause  severe hair loss! At the end though, it's all worth it if you are a simulation fanatic.

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