I was a huge fan of wing commander privateer and this game doesn't even come close to that, but you can see how it sort of tires...
the entire game feels kinda cheap and flimsy... the graphics are so-so (think Starfox on N64) and the sound is blah... the on-going missions need more variation and interface lacks that "polished look/feel". The visuals of "flying through space" is kinda bad.. you see stars going by, but then it looks as there's a static image in the background, so you barely feel like you are moving... not a good design.
one really bad thing, and maybe its because this is a port.. the game's font is so small and hard to read... I have a 50 inch plasma and had trouble reading the text... I'm sorry but that's just bad attention to detail.
the storyline is not very interesting though it could be the horrible cut scenes not sure... I gave it a chance at first, but then just ignored it.
the gameplay and style of game is the only thing that saves this game (basically everything that makes it like wing commander)... its not quite an open world, but it almost feels like. You can battle pirates, get bounter hunter mission from the trade stations, and not to mention you can trade to get money as well which is a cumbersome system, but its still cool.
This game has serious potential... but the developers just seemed fall flat. A game like this really needs AWESOME sound effects, a great interface (responsive and fun controls) and a great game engine.
But I will say this..the gameplay is a nice change of pace from the typical xbox title. Not sure why they don't make games in this genre more...
Let me start this review by saying that this is my kind of game. I sunk far too much time in to Space Trader and the Palm, and even more into X-Wing Vs. Tie-Fighter. But in trying to be both, it manages to do neither well.
The space combat is tedious and boring, mostly due to the lack of variety in enemies or weapons. The controls are sluggish, and the layout is very weird. You can't even set your speed to anything between 0% and 100%; this make maneuvering even harder.
The trading on the other hand takes too long. It goes:
1. Buy some cargo. (1M) 2. Set your destination in a very clunky map. (1M) 3. Take off from the station. (30S) 4. Fly away from the station until you can hyperjump. (30S) 5. Wait for game to load next system. (1M) 6. Arrive in new system. A. (if there are pirates, about 1/3 chance) Drop cargo. (30S) B. Fight pirates. (3M) C. Find and pick up cargo. (2M) 7. Fly to station. (1M) 8. Dock (1M) 9. Repeat.
That whole process takes 6 minutes, or 11:30 if there are pirates. It never took more than 2 in Space Trader.
The plot is incomprehensible, and the cutscenes are the worst I have ever seen. There are maybe 2 voice actors that had any training whatsoever, and possibly one more who doesn't grate on you every time you hear them speak. Ad to that the complete lack of any attempt to obey the laws of physics, much less handwave the mistakes. If this was a book, it would be one of the worst fan-fics ever written.
If you had replaced the entire staff with high-schoolers this would have been an embarrassment, with the possible exception of the cutscenes; and the only there due to the lack of a render farm.
I really have to wonder why this franchise was brought to the 360 rather than something set in the Privateer/Wing Commander universe. Anyway... game play is okay but rather repetative and as mentioned, this title could of used some polish... especially as it's a port of an older game.