It would take a lot to overcome the painful installation, but The Ur-Quan Masters succeeds. After downloading and running the 1MB installer, we were subjected to another 180MB of downloading at 32K/sec., which took about an hour and a half on a corporate LAN. (To be fair, we did download the entire package.) Once the game was running, however, our frustrations vanished in a wondrous haze of retro space gaming. This first stable version of the open-source 3DO port of Star Control II is as fun to play as the original, which is saying a lot.
The graphics may look retro today, but the hybrid gameplay--a complicated mix of strategy, role-playing, and space combat--matches up with any current release. Every ship is different, so learning their strengths and weaknesses is essential. While you explore an immense galaxy in a free-form adventure, a well-integrated story ties in an epic saga of alien domination. Star Control II is one of the greatest PC games of all time, and if you've never tried it, The Ur-Quan Masters is mandatory.
Our advice: Skip the remixes, at least at first, which download much more slowly than the game itself. For maximum speed, you can skip speech and music altogether (but then you'll never know what "Mmrnmhrm" sounds like).
The Ur-Quan Masters is a GPL port of the 3DO port of the DOS version of the classic video game Star Control II. It is based on the source code and game resources released by Toys For Bob in 2002. Explore the galaxy and engage in thrilling space battles with this game that combines strategy and action in a unique universe.
What's new in this version:
- Added the missing bits to the no-voice versions of Mycon, Syreen and Utwig dialogue
- New lander reports for Supox ruins and Ultron. The reports text is new content from TFB.
- Added spoken Slylandro probe coordinates
- Remixes are now selectable from the setup menu
- Added a "safe mode", which will ignore settings. Useful if you've somehow wrecked your configuration files.
- Added --addondir commandline option