- Click for Gameplay Trailer - Review
+ harmonious pixel art
+ clearly designed
- little variety
+ perfect retro soundtrack
- no voice output
+ smashing retro charm
+ bonding to crew
+ exciting hunting through the galaxy
+ good and clear interface
+ easy mouse and keyboard control
+ huge replayability
+ 10 spaceships with different layouts
+ many items, upgrades and tactics
+ new contents with the FREE advanced edition
+ easy, normal and hard difficult
+ quests with several solutions
+ units gain exp
- elements repeat with time
+ enemy crew react clever
+ ki shoot specific systems
Control my own ship through the unknown that is the final frontier. FTL (Faster Than Light); a space simulator with strategic and tactical elements. It’s also a game where when you die, you have to start over - there are no spare lives.
The setup for FTL is simple: you are captaining a Federation ship with information how to beat the Rebel fleet. The problem is that you have to get across the mostly hostile galaxy (which is broken up into eight sectors).
The majority of the gameplay is running your ship, which uses various main systems (weapons, shields, engines, lift support, medbay etc) and sub systems (piloting, sensors, and doors). The catch is that every system uses power, and you only have a limited amount.
You can see with a single top-down glance of your craft, shields are in one room, weapons in another etc. Enemies damage those rooms of your ship, the corresponding systems shut down. If your shield room goes down, every shot will damage your ship. If you lose O2, your team will soon be gasping for their next breath.
Your ship is upgradable, so while you can increase the total power your ship has, you also need to upgrade your systems, which takes up more power. You never have enough power to have everything at 100%.
You gather or buy weapon upgrades, various ship gear and crewmen, and the scrap that you need to upgrade your ship. You put scrap points into enhancing the main reactor, shields, life support, sensors, and so forth. There is a great balance between improving systems and improving the reactor. You are on a constant seesaw deciding how to spend your scrap to make for the most efficient ship, as all these systems give you offensive and defensive ratings and abilities that are crucial in battle.
The true beauty of FTL is the journey through the galaxy. Systems are divided into sectors, most of which come with themes where they are loaded with nebulae, controlled by pirates or coming across a space station under attack by giant alien spiders. Many of these points will give you the option of whether you want to get involved or just leave.
Some of your options will change depending on your crew composition and equipment, like if you send your robotic Engi crewmember into a quarantine zone, and that keeps them fresh for replaying. Some even turn into quest chains that unlock new ships for your next playthrough.
When you’re fighting an enemy ship you have a lot of decisions to make. You have to pay attention to your power levels and which systems you are using. You'll need to make sure your crew is in the right places and dealing with any issues that may come up.
Battles run in pausable real time, with you in control of all ship functions and crewmen. All ships in the game are shown with dedicated rooms housing systems like shields, weapons, engines, sensors, and oxygen.
Do you take down the enemy shields to try to finish off a foe quickly, or go after his weapons to keep him from destroy your hull? You also have to make tough calls on what weapons to use. Missiles, for instance, can go right through enemy shields, but you have a limited number of them available so you have to use them wisely. At the same time, you have to make the same calls on what systems to repair on your own ship when you take damage, as everything needs to be fixed manually, and you never seem to have enough crewmen to take on everything. Do you restore the shields? Do you get the weapons back up? Do you tackle those fires in the sensor room?
In FTL, you will die a lot and have to start over a lot, but that is OK. You will enjoy it, because each time you die, you learn something. After a couple of hours, you realize that there are a fairly small number of encounters in the various star systems. All of them are randomly mixed up for each new game, but this just changes up the order in which you see them. But there is a lot to do for a Captain, unlock new ships, beat higher difficulty and explore the galaxy.
The free Advanced Edition update added a new eighth race called Lanius, which drain oxygen from any room they occupy, making them good for deterring boarding parties and for attacking drone ships. There are a ton of other additions as well.
Faster Than Light is a great and that will take over your life for many, many hours.
It’s amazing and you should definitely check it out!
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