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Computer Games Online Review: FreeSpace (1) - 12/21/97


Descent: FreeSpace - The spaceship-crawl heads for the great outdoors

While Doom and Quake get all of the acclaim, Descent may have been just as deserving of respect. A large and devoted group of fans continuously sing its praises and have developed a number of add-on products for it, but its overall popularity never seemed to reach the critical mass of Doom or Quake.

Attempting to broaden the game's base, Descent: FreeSpace – The Great War takes the battle into, erm, free space. The single-player version of the game is being designed like a pseudo-dynamic campaign, with multiple possible outcomes for each mission. Additionally, your performance on early missions can have an impact on future ones; obviously, play balancing this kind of structure will take some work to avoid the game getting too easy or hard as the game progresses. Of course multiplayer play isn't being neglected – the plan is to ship with 16-player network support out of the box.

The version of the game supplied by Interplay for this sneak-peak wasn't playable, but the trailer uses the game's 3D engine to display various battle scenes. The ships are well-detailed and though 3D support wasn't yet enabled, the angular, polygonal look of Descent is oddly appealing when taken outside.

Whether fans of the series will really prefer to get spaced out(side), rather than spaced in(side) will be determined when Descent: FreeSpace is released in April.

by Steve Bauman

taken from Computer Games Online


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