Typically, 4x strategy games tend to be spartan as far as graphics, and Starships Unlimited (made by a small production house) is no exception. It tries to offset this by offering deeper gameplay, and you definitely can find that in spades if you spend the time to look into its more curious intricacies.
Starships in this game are more game characters than actual starships. Unlike games like Space Empires, Reach for the Stars, or Master of Orion, you’re not rampaging across the galaxy with massive fleets. In a typical game of Starships Unlimited, you might build only a half dozen ships. But each one is like a powerful playing piece whose capabilities are determined by the parts that you use to build it.
Other games have taken this starship approach, but none have de-emphasized the empire building aspects like Starships Unlimited. Colonies are important, but they’re rare because they’re expensive to build and slow to grow. This isn’t Civilization’s let-a-thousand-cities-bloom model. You will, however, find in Starships Unlimited all the traditional trappings of space strategy games: colonies, mining, diplomacy, research, espionage, and so forth. But they’re all streamlined so that you’ll spend most of your time sending your ships on missions.
One of the most surprising things about this game is how comprehensive it manages to be while still keeping the starships front and center. Because of this, it feels even more like a Star Trek game than most Star Trek games; the hallmark of Gene Rodenberry’s series is that the action is no less epic for being centered around a single ship.
System Requirements: Pentium 90 MHz, 32 MB RAM, Win95
- Buy Game