Darkstar One offers a fantastic amount of freedom of choice. The story-based missions gradually lead you deeper into the galaxy to new races, new technologies and ever stronger opponents. Explore a vast array of solar systems in search of hidden artifacts of ancient races, essential objects for upgrading your ship--the Darkstar One.
User reviews:
Mostly Positive (223 reviews) - 79% of the 223 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Aug 14, 2006

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About This Game

Darkstar One offers a fantastic amount of freedom of choice. The story-based missions gradually lead you deeper into the galaxy to new races, new technologies and ever stronger opponents. Explore a vast array of solar systems in search of hidden artifacts of ancient races, essential objects for upgrading your ship--the Darkstar One.
In addition to artifacts, acquire credits to purchase better equipment, such as weapons and shields. Earn credits in a myriad of ways: by taking on assignments, bounty hunting, piracy, smuggling, trading, escorting, transporting, rewards and more.
  • A vast, simulated universe with many unique races, space ships and battle tactics.
  • Elaborate story, related by more than fifty minutes of video sequences.
  • Configure and upgrade your ship, Darkstar One, any way you choose--build a fast attack ship with many light weapons or a near-invincible cruiser with heavy weaponry.
  • Over two hundred different weapons, shields and equipment items.
  • Rockets, torpedoes and mines feature special tactical uses: mines can fire at opponents or distract approaching missiles.
  • The "Spell Weapon": a special weapon with a powerful effect similar to certain spells in role-playing games. This weapon becomes increasingly versatile throughout the game and greatly increases tactical options.
  • Acquire weapons from other races - Mount distinctive weapons from other races on "Darkstar One," each featuring unique functions that require different battle tactics.
  • Embark on special missions - explore canyons or even underground on unknown worlds.
  • Freedom of choice - earn credits in many ways: fighting, piracy, assignments, smuggling, trading, escorting, transporting, rewards, and more.
  • Play as the "good" or the "bad" guy and take advantage of political disputes.

System Requirements

    • Supported OS: Windows XP (32 bit)
    • Processor: 1.6 GHz Intel or AMD processor
    • Memory: 512 MB RAM
    • Sound: DirectX compatible Sound Card
    • Graphics: DirectX 9 compatible 128 MB graphics card with support for pixel/vertex shader 1.1 (GeForce 3 and above)
    • Hard Drive: 6 GB HD Space
    • Supported OS: Windows XP with SP2
    • Processor: 3.0 GHz Intel or AMD processor
    • Memory: 1024 MB RAM
    • Sound: DirectX compatible Sound Card
    • Graphics: DirectX 9 compatible 256 MB graphics card with support for pixel/vertex shader 3.0 (GeForce 6/Radeon x1x00 and above)
    • Hard Drive: 7 GB HD Space
Customer reviews
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Mostly Positive (223 reviews)
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156 reviews match the filters above ( Very Positive)
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
10.9 hrs on record
Pre-Release Review
Posted: October 20
A passable game in the spirit of Elite or Freelancer. Unfortunately, about halfway through the story line I hit a game-breaking bug and couldn't progress any further.
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Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
67 of 69 people (97%) found this review helpful
224.1 hrs on record
Posted: May 14, 2014
This isn't the next coming of Freespace or X, but it doesn't pretend to be either. It's a nifty space shooter with a side of RPG elements, and for what it is, it's actually a great wee game. Given the disappointments in the genre that are available today, going back to titles like this is actually kinda refreshing.
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60 of 65 people (92%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
48.9 hrs on record
Posted: December 25, 2014
About 90% as good as "Freelancer," this game's flight and combat mechanics are easy to pick up and consistently rewarding. The just slightly campy (and lovably so) story is told well, too.

While some games in this genre focus on getting the next ship, "Darkstar One" is all about making one ship work for you. It's a slightly different take on the formula, and it's a good one. Also, the game is pretty forgiving, which is nice when similar titles can be "brickwall difficult" experiences.

I was actually quite surprised with how engaging "Darkstar One" turned out to be. Going in, I was prepared to be disappointed. Instead, I was enthralled.
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33 of 37 people (89%) found this review helpful
12 people found this review funny
21.8 hrs on record
Pre-Release Review
Posted: November 26, 2013
Nice space sim. Sadly enough, that's about it. The character animations and voice acting are a bit stiff, the story is kinda boring and predictable.

BUT the fighting is fun, the upgrade system is great, the game looks nice and the alien races are distinct. And in a genre that is as starved as this, that's enough sometimes.

Well, at least until Star Citizen is released next year.
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25 of 26 people (96%) found this review helpful
53.0 hrs on record
Posted: December 1, 2013
This is one of those games that, while you play it, it is enough to keep you playing and, once you finish it, you forget about it. Not bad, but not amazing.

I think those who would appreciate it most are those that haven't played games like Freelancer or X before. The rest will see it as an alright game that doesn't do anything new, but was amusing nonetheless.
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25 of 28 people (89%) found this review helpful
8.3 hrs on record
Posted: August 15, 2015
I wish there was an option for 'Meh' for recommendations.

As far as Space Sim shooters go, this is definitely a good catch on the market. The learning curve is hardly a curve at all (if you are able to get on good terms with relativity of direction), and it will keep you going for a while.

However, at the time of writting this, 7 hours in, it's becoming more and more apparent just how repetitive this game becomes, and offers you no replay value. The missions are all pretty much the same ("Go there, kill things") and it turns into an incredible grind fest if you're a completionist like me. Eliminating all the gangs, liberating the systems, flying through asteroids for upgrades and a silly sidequest now and then that is even more repetitive if that's even possible.

The game would also like to suggest that there are multiple ways of making money and choosing different paths and sure, there are indeed multiple branches that you can gain reputation in, to become a Merchant or a Smuggler, a Mercenary or a Pirate, a Killer or a Bounty Hunter...

Well, except that Merchant and Smuggler are the same thing with a slight risk and much larger reward for Smuggler, Mercenary and Bounty Hunter are just you shooting the bad guys, Pirate is you shooting the good guys and stealing their stuff to sell for Mercenary or Smuggler, and Killer is the same thing except you shoot to kill. So really, not much of difference at all.

And even though there are indeed dozens and dozens of systems to explore, there really isn't a reason to. It's all the same anyway, slight differences here and there (image of a planet in the background, number of objects, possible sidemission/collectible (that you can see and check news stand about locations of beforehand)), but other than that, you're probably not going to visit a lot of systems for more than a few seconds while your jump drive recharges.

Anyway, to wrap it all up, I would only suggest this game if you want to play a space shooter. If you're looking for a trader game, I would suggest you look at other Kalypso titles, as the trading system isn't really all that great here. If you're looking for something you can pick up and play casually whenever you feel like blowing some space ships up, this is the game for you.
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21 of 22 people (95%) found this review helpful
31.5 hrs on record
Posted: March 20, 2014
Customizing your ship with weapons and special abilities is the best part about this game. While space battles are well done, fun, and with good physics, it does get boring somewhat quickly. The main missions and side quests can be interesting as it progresses through the storyline, but it does not give you a feeling of great accomplishment as you go through them. The trading aspect of the game can and might as well be ignored completely. It provides you with minimal profits in comparison to the other means to acquire credits. Speaking of credits, I completed the game with 8.5 million credits in my possession. After a while, the amount of credits you accumulate will become obsolete, as you will have more than enough to get whatever you want. The game suffers from extreme repetitiveness, which also creates tedium and dullness when you do the same two or three activities over, and over, and over, and over. Simply put, the game is about 20 hours too long. The developers should have been more concise and implemented more diverse aspects in more ways than just this. The end game is surprisingly bland and unexciting. Also, throughout the game, you are given a false sense of freewill. Your progress is almost completely linear.

Darkstar One is good.
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17 of 18 people (94%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
43.9 hrs on record
Posted: December 29, 2013
Entertaining, although not very versatile. The idea of mixing RPG elements by creating an evolving ship is nice, but merely replaces the opportunity to switch spacecrafts and try out new combinations. Missions might become repetitive (and far less challenging) once you understand the basic components which they are constructed with.

If you are looking for an in-depth 4X game along the lines of X: Beyond the Frontier and its sequels, this might be too shallow for you. If you are looking for a more space combat focused game, give it a try. Do not expect the intensity of a Freelancer or Freespace, but at least it might still the hunger until a next Indepence War sequel arrives.
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16 of 17 people (94%) found this review helpful
27.0 hrs on record
Posted: February 16, 2014
A really good addition to the space sim genre, really simple and easy to pick up and play, story is somewhat broken up at times but its more about the journey in the ship and its evolution rather than the over arching story line in my opinion. All said and done its a fun Space shooter game and would deffinately give it a try if your into the spacesim genre.
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15 of 16 people (94%) found this review helpful
35.7 hrs on record
Posted: August 9, 2013
A fun, inexpensive space combat and trading game with some customization options and a servicable story. Can be quite addictive and is easy to get into, unlike some other games in the genre. Becomes a bit repetitive after a while, but you could probably push through and finish the main story a lot quicker than I did. If you're looking for something in the genre and don't want something too insanely deep or hard to get into, it's worth a shot. May not sound like the most resounding endorsement, but this game ended up being quite high on my hours played list and I certainly enjoyed it the entire time I did so.
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Recently Posted
0.7 hrs
Posted: September 24
For the casual space sim player, nothing too complex and the interface is easy to read. Simplistic compared to others like Freespace, but anyone who enjoyed Freelancer will feel right at home. A space sim anyone can pickup and play.
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3.1 hrs
Posted: September 11
Good cheesy fun.

Theoretically, I should hate this game. The voice acting is terrible, I've fallen off of the map in one level, the economic element is tacked on, and the gameplay is repetitive. So why do I love this game?

With a little suspension of disbelief, it's really easy to become immersed in this. The universe is consistent, and makes sense on a grand scale. Even the terrible voice acting doesn't bring me out of it, because the lines were well written and the actors always nailed the timing, if not the emotion.

My favourite feature was the fact that I could drop all my cargo before a battle to improve how well I manoeuvre, then collect all my cargo at the end. Just once, I would have liked to face a powerful thief that would have picked up my cargo and gotten away successfully without destroying me to really hit home that possible tactic in this world, but it never happened. (I bet I probably could have done it to NPCs though.)

I also liked how well everything was tied together. Between the gameplay, movie sequences, and menu navigation, it was easy to see how big I was compared to my ship, how big the ship is compared to the satelite, and what radio communication looks like both inside and outside of gameplay. Most games never come close to achieving this level of cohesion and interconnectivity.

Overall, I liked it. As a game, it was okay at best, but as a new world to visit and experience, it is one of the best.
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0.7 hrs
Posted: September 3
epic game , completed it on disc years ago, only bought it on this to won it on this
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0.5 hrs
Posted: August 22
Oh how I would love for Steam to have a Maybe option as well as Yes and No, because this game is a complete Maybe. I bought DarkStar One when it came out years ago. I was hoping it would be the next Freelancer, and it tried, but it didn't try hard enough.

DarkStar One has a lot of good points, but the biggest negative is the repetitiveness. Now if you've never played the game and have read some reviews here, you may think, "A lot of people talk about repetition, but just how bad could it be?" Bad. Really, really bad. It would be one thing if there were just a few mission TYPES that you had to do over and over, but you effectively do THE SAME MISSION over and over. I remember one in particular where you have to eavesdrop on a conversation (I think some crime lords are having a meeting or something). You always went to the EXACT same station type, parked in the EXACT same spot to do the eavesdropping, and then the people would have the EXACT same conversation, and at the EXACT same point in said conversation they would notice your presence. Then the EXACT same three ships would launch from the station and attack you. It got to the point where as soon as I was discovered I would fly over in front of the landing bay for the station and pick off the ships as they came out. It was an absolute slaughter. Good for me in terms of reward, but bad in terms of mind-numbing gameplay.

The mechanics of the game are fine, and it would be a lot of fun if there were more variation. If you ever played the first Assassin's Creed and got tired of the same thing over and over, this game is worse, and I would advise that you don't get it. If, on the other hand, you don't mind that sort of thing, then I say get this game. So yeah, it's a big Maybe.
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8.3 hrs
Posted: August 14
Like the X games, but more focused on playability than on mechanics, really fun!
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64.9 hrs
Posted: July 28
Not a bad game. Not a great game. I'd call it good.

Fly around, kill space pirates with your own space fighter, do some trading, complete some missions, earn money, and upgrade your ship. Quite a bit of freedom to choose your own path, and explore different star systems.

Sit through the mostly badly acted cut scenes.

Then play some more, blast away some more pirates. It sounds like it should be more tedious, but I think it's actually a pretty fun game. In spite the poor acting/voice, Darkstar One has some interesting zaniness that keeps you interested, as well as some interesting quests. And there are several different alien races you can learn about, a number of different organizations, lots of interesting news items in the news feed. That's probably a lot of what kept me going--reading about the stuff going on--international machinations, and the various groups that hire you out to take care of one task or another. All while the galaxy inches closer and closer to war.
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115.9 hrs
Posted: July 19

(the bug is one where if you don't do the missions in the specific order you're supposed to, you simply won't be able to finish the game)

By the way I know the game reflects I played it for 115h, but it' s mostly AFK (and also getting rid of "wanted" status on occasions, which is done by being afk).
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5.5 hrs
Posted: July 17
Not a great game, but it's pretty solid. Yes the dialogue is poorly acted and the CGI cut screens are dated at best. Yes it's a little limited in what you can do (basically kill dudes or trade, and trade is not lucrative). However, it keeps you moving, combat is pretty dynamic, it looks good and plays good, and you have a good sense of advancement. Overall, enjoyable and getting my money's worth out of it.
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0.7 hrs
Posted: July 9
It just won't start on my Win10 x64 10586, always load error 0x03, tried everything from Google but no luck.
One does not simply install Windows XP just for this single game.
It IS lots of fun but not THAT much fun.

And for the game, it's Freelancer simplified, one of a kind years ago.

May the 300 blessssss me and let me sssstart this game...

===Edited Aug/20/2016===
It magically works on 14393 now!
Okay so after all this years I can get my heart broken again...

Game itself is pretty linear, and do not need much effort to equip your ship all MK6 turrets and weapons and missles and blow everything up.

It has the most amazing ending among all the games I've played so far.

Well often you see a male and a female on game box art and you'll think that romance will take place somewhere in the game but nooooooo...
The male protagonist has been used as a tool, you thought you got lucky for getting a female companion but nooooooooo....
After all those life-risking missions, you'll know the truth about your father's death then she dumped you because she's reunited with her boyfriend.
And that's not enough she even programmed the main computer on your ship to use her voice all the time after to eternity.
You used me. You dumped me. Now I have to listen to your voice every single f**king time I did something.
So years ago I deleted this game after I got 100 artifacts and blew up the easter egg mothership.
Worst ending ever.
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