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The Ur-Quan Masters

By The Ur-Quan Masters Team Free Editors' Rating

Editors' Review

Download.com Staff Nov 7, 2008

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).

Full Specifications

What's new in version 0.7.0

NEW FEATURES

  • 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
  • Added --keepaspectratio to keep correct aspect ratio when using custom resolutions in OpenGL mode
  • New addon machanism allows greater flexibility for selecting which resource goes with which game element.
  • Joystick text input improved
  • Unicode strings now could theoretically support UCS-4 on all platforms
  • Experimental support for Symbian S60 3rd edition
  • Support for Windows CE
  • Added fullscreen/windowed toggle key F11
  • Support for 3DO "ship spin" videos
  • Better location description in savegame summaries
  • Cancel key will now quit out of the Manifest Menu
  • Error boxes on MacOSX are now actually native to the OS - no need to check Console.app anymore.

BUGFIXES

  • Properly account for simultaneous destruction in SuperMelee.
  • Ending a battle with a simultaneous death no longer triggers an assertion
  • Druuge no longer turn hostile after attempting a salvage
  • Fixed Mmrnmhrm's X-Form transformation without energy use
  • Fuel and distance estimates are now more accurate
  • Analog joysticks less sensitive to jitter
  • Cannot talk to Ilwrath with a 'caster anymore after they die off
  • Fixed enemy ships getting recrewed between encounters in HyperSpace
  • Old Windows installer was horribly obsolete; fixed now.
  • Fixed rendering error when entering the orbit of a shielded planet
  • Fixed planet blinking when exiting scan
  • Menu sounds restored after editing a control set name.
  • Fixed a freeze when quickly escaping melee.
  • Fixed misaligned cargo count
  • Fixed a crash when filling fuel tanks over 10
  • Comm code rewrite, fixing a lot of minor annoyances
  • Team configuration in netplay no longer desyncs
  • Fixed Melee menu timeout when both sides are Cyborgs
  • Fixed AI ship not moving on warp in
  • Revert gfx settings entirely when a mode switch fails
  • Fix for weird colors problem on MacOSX with SDL 1.2.14
  • Lander will no longer hang when killed on planets with a lot of
  • natural disasters
  • Fixed crash when saving a game into the last slot while having too many devices on board
  • Fixed crashes and potential weirdness when loading savegames from a Homeworld encounter screen
  • Fixed a crash when conversing with music disabled
  • Extremely busy battle sequences (Orz vs. Orz with many space marines out, for instance) no longer introduces graphical glitches
  • Fixed rendering bug that would occasionally make a ship just be solid blue all the time
  • Objects in melee made of multiple "parts" no longer jitter during zoom
  • Fixed a crash on startup if uqm.cfg did not exist
  • Extremely rapid key presses will no longer be lost at low framerates
  • 3DO videos now work after a resolution change
  • OpenGL texture loading uses surface pitch instead of screen width, improving compatibility across older graphics cards.
  • Miscellaneous conversational typo and timing fixes
  • 999.9:999.9 is now reachable in HyperSpace
  • Do not match singular stars when given a prefix in star search
  • Fixed wrong Sa-Matra guards icons after Kohr-Ah win
  • Canceling load from the main menu returns to main menu
  • Gas giants can no longer have negative masses

INTERNAL CHANGES

  • Code cleanup; many warnings removed
  • Massive changes to the way the resource system works. This is
  • mostly interesting in that 3DO voices, 3DO videos, and 3DO music are now addon packs like any other.
  • Code reorganization; old stuff removed, new stuff better set-up
  • 32-bit graphics everywhere internally.
  • Refactored universe generation
  • Pthread support
  • Removed the 256-frame limit on .ani files

General

Release September 15, 2011
Date Added September 15, 2011
Version 0.7.0

Operating Systems

Operating Systems Windows 95, Windows 2000, Windows 98, Windows Me, Windows, Windows XP, Windows NT
Additional Requirements Windows (all)

Popularity

Total Downloads 172,936
Downloads Last Week 0
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User Reviews

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Developer's Description

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.