The always popular, always expanding, space based game where you control a fleet to help you conquer the galaxy one mission at a time has just gotten another expansion to it's collection. But, what exactly is it that draws in the fans? The open ended possibilities that lie in the unknown abyss beyond? The questions left unanswered around the mystery that is Space?
Many shows and games have relied on these intriguing curiosities to help grab the attention of thousands, or rather millions, of fans ranging from intense action like Star Trek and Star Wars, to horrific creatures as in Alien and Dead Space. The stationary game play was also introduced where you protect, repair and command ships in a fleet. It's time to take the stationary and mix it with some action!
That's what the team at Hostile Viking Studio, a Hawaiian team believed, and now they are bringing us Precursor's Dawn! This game will bring you many possibilities from campaign styles, unique missions, multiplayer options, customization's and more. Using the concept of board games and blending it with space action, you have an exciting new game style to enjoy. This will be a Turn-Based Combat style game that fit's in the Sci-Fi Tactical Space genre.
"We wanted to be flexible with how players attack challenges within the game."
Daniel Randall from Hostile Viking Studio
An "O" type star has begun its death spiral launching a stellar flare through the rotating Dyson’s sphere rings. This massive burst of light has attracted the attention of the neighboring star traveling species to investigate. Your civilization draws on all of its military strength thrusting you, the player, into the action as a newly minted Fleet Commander. Now you are tasked to capture technology and slow the efforts of the other species by growing your fleet for battle and scavenging. Starting with only a Flagship and the excitement of a new mission, you must team up with friends, take down your enemies and maintain your ship and crew to be able to be the master of your quadrant of the galaxy.
Let's start with the game modes. They are giving you the chance to have full interactivity options with the diverse selection between Single Player, Cooperative (Co-Op) and Multiplayer Online. Interestingly enough, taken right out of the Visual Novel genre to splash more intricacy into their game, players will be able to select between all the different missions and that mission selection will alter the available missions. Players will have to adapt to different styles of play by using different ships or changing their own tactics. Be warned, single player missions may have caps on available units. The good news about all of this is that ships of any class size can be tailored to fit a wide range of roles, from run and gun to fleet mechanic. So you get to create a fleet customized to your own specifications.
Speaking of missions, they will feature different objectives. Like, capture a chunk of valuable debris, push the enemy out of a section in space, or even defend an area while an outpost is brought online. Some are more story driven than others, as in players will be asked to make choices about commanders they come across for the story driven missions. The majority of games have the missions in a cookie cutter style, "here's your mission, go do it, done." Giving you a bit more freedom, players will find that there are multiple ways to complete the objective given to them.
Say you are playing as a KulaKha Commander and you select a mission to disrupt a Thoth operation. You would come into a point on the map and begin hunting the enemy's fleet. The goal would be to destroy or disable their fleet's Flagship.
"We really want players to experience the single player side and we do that by rewarding the time investment. I think it is a fair trade. So, yes. The single player campaign time will aid in multiplayer." - Daniel Randall from Hostile Viking Studio
A favorite feature among any game with a character or vehicle exists is the ability to customize yourself for personalized grandeur. The option lies with your Flagship. The opportunity to make your ship your own range from the paint, decals, talents and all the way to load outs. Certain customize options will also be placed on your entire fleet and not just your Flagship, such as decals.
Technology, and the resources that are found within, grant the player experience and allow the ability to unlock new talents and load outs for different ships. Gaining experience and leveling up help unlock updates to your ship such as talents. To help find the resource that contains the experience gold mine there will be areas of interest that the player can select to investigate. For example, Intel will show hot spots on the map for Technology and other race activity within the system. Additionally, talents can be used to reveal the enemy's location and it usually requires one to two turns before the ships begin to exchange fire.
So, to talk a bit on the actual game play offered, you will be on a hex tile game board at the start of the mission or battle. Players have a set number of command points per turn that they can use to call in more ships, move ships, fire or use special abilities such as talents. Once the mission commences, you must begin your strategic plan on how you want to take on the objective. Do you start by calling for back up before a possible ambush? Do you spend a turn searching for the enemies location, hoping the answer isn't within harming range? The choice is yours, as well as the consequences of your actions.
The single player and co-op missions are selected from a map similar to the play field. Now the cool part about co-op is that co-op missions have two separate fleets. This means you can take your fleet and team up with a friend and their fleet. However, when it comes to missions and battles, sometimes you start very close to each other, other times one player may need a rescue. This option should make the game balanced, intense and strategic for both parties right off the start of battle and at the same time leave you the ability to gang up on enemies.
Finally, Multiplayer. This is the section many of you have probably scrolled past the rest of the article to check out so you can jump straight to friend-based strategies and game play. Multiplayer will have a selection of maps ranging in size based on number of players. With the max of four players having maps with the largest area. A players fleet in multiplayer, as of right now, is made up of a Flagship and six ship designs that the player can spend command points on to call into the fight, at the cost of a turn. Both players start by placing their Flagship. This is the only ship at the beginning of the match. Fleet size will depend on size of the field and the cost of the ships selected. Design does impose some further limits.
"The idea behind our tactical system was to reduce random luck to its smallest possible factor for the outcome of a match."
Daniel Randall from Hostile Viking Studios