Saturday, August 31, 2013

August of Games: Day 31 - FTL: Faster Than Light

FTL's soundtrack isn't complicated, but it's often very pretty. Very fitting to the action of the game.

FTL: Faster Than Light
Developer: Subset Games
Genre (Setting): Spacefaring Sci-fi
Genre (Gameplay): Real-Time Strategy I guess? It's nothing like other RTS's, but it's a fitting title.
What is this game: In this game, you are the crew of a spaceship. The evil rebel forces are moving to destroy the federation, and you have to keep ahead of them and get across space to warn the Federation fleet and destroy the Rebel Flagship before it's too late.
As a game, you have this map of your ship, and you need to manage your crew members and he power to the various areas of your ship, as well as your weapons systems when you get into fights. At any time you can pause the game to give commands, but actions are only executed outside of the pause. This kinda breaks the real-time thing, as you can take your time to strategize. When unpaused though you have to be fast, because the enemy ships aren't relenting.
The game is randomly generated. Play is split into sectors, each of which has stars you jump between and need to get to the Jump Gate at the end of each system to move to the next sector. The sectors branch, and have different traits, but all converge on a single final point - the Federation fleet. Along the way there's all sorts of encounters as you move between systems - enemy ships, friendly encounters, distress signals, quests. There's an incredible number of things that can happen. There's also a ton of ship types to play as, and a ton of different weapon configurations. It reminds me of Binding of Isaac in its replayability.
It also reminds me of Isaac with its difficulty, but FTL is WAY harder. You need some luck to get a good loadout for your ship, or else you need an incredible level of skill. I've beaten it a couple times, but only with the Kestrel Type A and Torus Type A, all times on Easy mode.

What's great about it: I've already kinda gotten into the good stuff. It's super hard, it's super replayable, and combat is fast, exciting, and dangerous. The graphics are simple and readable. The AI is very very smart. The only drawback to me is that the AI draws a TON of power from your CPU; my computer crashes from overheating while playing occasionally, but my computer has a shit fan, yours will probably just get very hot.

I gave this game a shot after watching Jeph Jacques (of Questionable Content) rave constantly about how good it was, enough that he uploaded some Let's Play videos, and watching those convinced me that yes, this game is good enough that I have to have it. His videos might help you too.

How do I get it: Steam mostly, for $10. It's a steal.

So, um, that's it! That's August of Games! I hope you've enjoyed this month. I certainly have! Unfortunately it might look a little sparser next month, but I'm gonna try and stay really active. Avatar World is nearing initial completion, so look for that, and for my next game project, The Old World!
End Recording,

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