RATING : 7 out of 10
Lately I’ve had an attraction for older / retro games. As playing the currently line up of games here in 2012 there seems to be something missing. While the eye candy continues to improve on games, there is nothing memorable that sticks. With many of todays modern games lacking in ‘character’.
If I think about a game which ‘sticks’ and has ‘character’ Wing Commander comes to mind. It was one day upon my quest to find the old DOS version, I stumbled upon the “Wing Commander Saga : The Darkest Dawn” which had just been released. Curiosity got the best of me and I had to download the game to find out more.
The Wing Commander Saga is a FREE Fan created game with a completely new storyline and game. Which apparently has been 10 years in the making and finally been completed in 2012. I couldn’t believe that this was a game that was made for FREE from a fan community donating their time.
Upon playing Wing Commander Saga I have only been impressed. The game is very polished and adheres to extremely professional production values. From impressive voice acting to beautiful rendered graphics. At times, It does give hints that it’s a not a game made by a big studio. However those moments are fleeting and quickly drowned out by the overall impressiveness of the game. As Wing Commander Saga is one of the best Fan made games, if not the best made ever.
The overall engine is fairly solid and no major bugs were encountered. The only glitch I uncovered was that the Voice acting could sometimes stutter and skip. However, I’m sure the latest patch release would fix this problem. And I was impressed with the overall attention to detail. And pleased that I could even using my PC Xbox controller to fully milk that engaging dog fighting action.
The only real flaw that I could pick off the Wing Commander Saga would relate to the Wing Commander series itself. As Wing Commander was a unique space dog fighting concept back in the early nineties. And one of the reasons for its great success was the concept (Although there were other great aspects of the game). Nowadays, that concept in itself wouldn’t do much to attract new players. And would need a refresh in ideas and additions to its theme.
Had I not played the original Wing Commander, I might have had some difficulties knowing how to navigate my ship. But a quick refreshment of my memory, I found most of the keys were mapped similarly to the old Wing Commander game. I found the game to be very true to the theme of Wing Commander. And even with the updated graphics the same feeling of the old Wing Commander was carried.
It is not necessary to be familiar with the old Wing Commander games and plot to play Wing Commander Saga. However, it is most likely old fans of the Wing Commander series will enjoy it the most being fueled by nostalgia.
Wing Commander Saga is an incredible development in Fan based gaming. I found the game to be incredibly engaging and enjoyed its authentic feel. With its high production values, it’s inspiring to see what can be done for those who are passionate. As the Wing Commander Saga is a game that ‘sticks’, similar to predecessors in the Original series.