Still, once you get used to it your combat system is reasonably workable. I can switch between melee and missile weapons with a click, drag special attacks and abilities onto a hot-bar and activate them with presses of the number keys, then toss grenades or heal myself at the press of a button. As your hallways and walkways are generously littered with fuel drums and exploding canisters, I canb use these to blast the alien scum to kingdom come. I can even see signs of a rudimentary physics system at work, even if it is a bit silly when my hero just walks straight through a bunch of crates pushing them in his wake. Surely that would chafe on the knees. Still, you do also throw in a robot companion who can follow me around for a bit of added firepower – just what I need when I’m up against such overwhelming odds.
Prowling your besieged starship setting was even quite good fun at first. I could disengage my brain and just enjoy the steady rhythm of slaughter, looting and upgrading (and thanks for the hotkey that gathers nearby dropped resources, by the way). However, the more I’ve played, the more I feel like we’re not really going anywhere. I’m not just talking about character progression. True, you have a simplified skill tree where I can add to and enhance my combat and engineering abilities, not to mention a decent system of weapon, armour and robot upgrades. I can even treat myself to cybernetic modifications to boost my powers further. I’m not really sure why you’ve tried to make this an ethical dilemma – I care so little about my character that I couldn’t give a monkey’s whether he ends up half-machine – but I’m sure you were trying to do something interesting with it. As an RPG you’re a little simple, but I don’t really have too many problems with your mechanics.
What I do have a problem with is your structure and pace. One section seems to blend into the next with only the most basic change of environments or enemies. I might be tracking down another member of the ship’s crew or shutting down another bulkhead, but all I see is that I’m wandering from one area to the next blasting and battering anything in the way until I reach the destination marked on my map, at which point I just repeat. This in itself isn’t a disaster – some reasonably decent Diablo clones do exactly the same thing. Unfortunately, you don’t seem to have their energy. Where the action should ebb and flow, pushing towards the next big encounter and allowing plenty of time to find new and exciting upgrades, you just feel like a continuous, moderately tricky slog. Enemy AI is woeful, and I don’t know who programmed my robot pet, but he seems to be drawn towards mines like a dog to lamp posts. It’s good news that he’s cheap to regenerate (as is my hero) or I wouldn’t have got anywhere with you.