The ultimate space capital ship combat compendium is the evolution of hard core space combat sims. This release contains all Commander scenarios from all Battlecruiser & Universal Combat series remastered in 2015 exclusively for Steam.
User reviews:
Overall:
Mostly Negative (237 reviews) - 37% of the 237 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Feb 6, 2015

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Recent updates View all (16)

July 1

Dev State Of Play

No news is good news; or so they say.

Anyway, a lot of work has been going on. And due to the nature of this update, there isn't likely to be another patch up until the first major update is done sometime in 2017.

Basically, this being mostly a graphics overhaul, it involves ripping out and updating a LOT of legacy code. For example, the DirectX version is deprecated, lots of legacy graphics work done decades ago is now being ripped out, revised etc. Remember, this game was last released in 2009 !(!). Heck, at one point I didn't even have a build for like three weeks because going from Visual Studio 2008 to VS2012, and now to VS2015, wreaked all kinds of havoc; as any games developer probably knows all about.

The biggest issue is that the engine built for this game, is only for this game. So porting it to anything else (e.g. Unity, the engine we built for Line Of Defense etc) is out of the question. And when it comes to graphics overhaul, it's a major issue in which fixing one thing, breaks a bunch of others.

The other issue is that since we're redoing all the art (2D, 3D UI, terrain etc), and given the massive scope of that work, we don't even expect all of it to be done and in the game before the end of 2017. I mean, if you've seen the appendix, then you already know just how massive the game assets dB is. And we're redoing ALL of it.

I may however release a build with the new graphics engine, but which uses the older assets. I haven't decided yet. It just depends on whether or not it's worth the hassle because a new graphics engine isn't going to make low quality legacy art assets look any better.

More news soon. Until then, keep playing the only game of its kind - ever.

Discuss

5 comments Read more

April 25

MINOR CONTENT UPDATE

Over the weekend, a small content update was pushed due to some of the animation INI files being incorrectly indexed.

All characters share animations (packed in the .\models\animate\.3DM files) indicated at the top of the .\models\animate\.INI file. So since the .INI file indices were incorrect, all 8 characters which use .M01 and .MO2 animation sets, had an issue in which the wrong animation (e.g. jump) was played.

e.,g. if you deployed Resnig (CO), Kendrick (CE), Brooks (FO) then jumped, they are supposed to mimic your movement. However, instead of jumping, they would wave instead.

Anyone who owns the original non-STEAM 2009 v2.0 release, can just download and re-apply the updated patch

2 comments Read more

About This Game

THE MOST ADVANCED SPACE COMBAT CAPITAL SHIP SIMULATOR. EVER. SERIOUSLY.


Universal Combat which was first released in 2004, was the spiritual successor to the infamous Battlecruiser series of games which made its debut in 1996. Then heralded as the most advanced capital ship space combat game, Battlecruiser 3000AD, the first title in the series, set the resulting standard for high-end capital ship combat games. You not only had control over a massive armed carrier in a vast universe with space and planetary bodies, you also had complete control over the carrier's systems (weapons, navigation etc), support crafts (fighters, shuttles, vehicles) as well as an entire crew that moved around the ship doing various things (e.g. engaging in combat with intruders).

When Universal Combat arrived, aside from new graphics technologies, it brought along with it a host of new features which were not present in the previous Battlecruiser titles. Such features included advanced fps controls which allowed you to not only deploy your carrier crew to planets, control them in combat etc, but it also allowed you to fight alongside them

In 2007, Universal Combat Collectors Edition was released as the final title in the Battlecruiser and Universal Combat IPs.

In 2009, following the 2008 release of Galactic Command Echo Squad SE (we also refreshed this game in 2014 and released as a Steam exclusive) which had improved space and planetary engines, we again refreshed the UCCE game and released it as Universal Combat Collector's Edition v2.0.

This ultimate space capital ship combat compendium spans over two decades and represents the evolution of hard core space combat sims. It contains all Commander scenarios from every game in the Battlecruiser and Universal Combat series:

  • Universal Combat Special Edition (3000AD, Oct 2006)
  • Universal Combat A World Apart (3000AD, Oct 2005)
  • Universal Combat Gold (3000AD, Oct 2005)
  • Universal Combat (Dreamcatcher Interactive, Feb 2004)
  • Battlecruiser Millennium Gold (Dreamcatcher Interactive, March 2003)
  • Battlecruiser Millennium (EB Games Exclusive, Nov 2001)
  • Battlecruiser 3000AD v2.0 (Interplay, Dec 1998)
  • Battlecruiser 3000AD (Take2, Sept. 1996)

PRIMARY GAMEPLAY FEATURES


Here is a sampling of the game features, out of hundreds of things that you can do in the game; most of which you can must make up as you go along. And this list doesn't contain any mention of the advanced game engine technologies, especially one of the most advanced AI systems you've ever encountered in a game.

  • Command 28 capital ships including carriers, cruisers, transports.
  • Command 46 support crafts including fighters, shuttles and planetary vehicles.
  • Use fleet command & control to create a massive fleet consisting of your ships and other AI controlled ones.
  • Direct control of various ship systems including shields, reactor, engine, cloaking, tractor beam, transporters and various advanced weapon systems.
  • Command a crew of over 100 personnel including key personnel such a Flight Officer, Navigation Officer etc.
  • Track your ship's AI crew as they go about their on-board duties which include engaging hostile intruders, repairing ship systems, prepping support craft etc.
  • Lead your marines into battle on planets using various weapons of mass destruction.
  • Deploy probes to keep track of friendly regions as well as spy on hostile ones.
  • Deploy mining drones on planets to mine for precious minerals which you can then sell for profit.
  • Dock at various space stations and planetary bases to trade, repair, rearm - and of course engage the hostile ones along the way.
  • Capture space stations for your alliance and use them as operational bases, including the ability to use their own fleet of support craft (cruisers, carriers, fighters etc)
  • Play the freeform scenario and roam a large galaxy as a Terran Military Commander for Galactic Command (GALCOM) or as any of the many alien nations and castes (e.g. you can be an explorer or a diplomat) supported by the game.
  • Load an away team of (e.g. marines, engineers etc) in a shuttle, deploy them on various planetside missions; complete with advanced orders.
  • No shuttles? Don't want to risk being shot down? Use the transporter room to deploy your combat away team directly into hostile planets.

Combined, the game manual and tutorial are over 200 pages. The keyboard commands map almost every single key on your keyboard. Yeah. Better go check your ink cartridges. Oh and paper, you will need lots of paper.

There is also a web based online appendix which details everything you need to know about the world of these games. That appendix is rather old now, but we're looking to do an updated version on the new upcoming website for the Universal Combat Advanced game. The appendix on the new site will be similar to the one we currently have on the Line Of Defense website.

EXCLUSIVE TO THIS STEAM RELEASE


This Steam release contains Instant Action and Advanced Campaign Mode scenarios featuring the primary Commander career. It also has the freeform roam scenarios in which you can go anywhere in the game galaxy and do anything (within the limits of the game) without any orders. You simply make your own adventure.

Though we removed all the secondary scenarios (such as those that feature infantry and fighter combat missions) in order to focus on the primary concept of the original Battlecruiser game which was purely about capital ship combat, this Steam version also contains never before released variants of the Instant Action and Advanced Campaign Mode scenarios scripted to use different capital ships. For example, the original A World Apart campaign scenario played as a Commander, featured a Battlecruiser MK3 carrier in part 1 and a Nightstar carrier in part 2. Both of these are included, in addition to variants using the newer Engstrom class carrier; the same ship featured in the Line Of Defense MMO game currently out on Steam Early Access.

You can view the changelog for the Steam version.

The exclusion of the infantry and fighter based scenarios doesn't mean that you cannot play in those roles. You can still play in an infantry role and also fly fighters; but you will do so as the Commander and not as the limited marine or pilot careers.

So this just means that there are no scenarios designed exclusively for those marine and pilot careers present in the previous games.

The reason for this is that, aside from this being a FREE game, we wanted to draw your attention to the capital ship Commander career which is the focus of the upcoming Universal Combat Advanced game and which won't feature those careers either.

THERE IS NO MULTIPLAYER


There is no multiplayer in this version of the game.

System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows XP SP2
    • Processor: Dual Core
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: DirectX SM3.0 compliant with 512MB memory
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Storage: 2 GB available space
    • Sound Card: DirectX compliant
    Recommended:
    • OS: Windows 7 SP1
    • Processor: Quad Core
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: DirectX SM3.0 compliant with 1GB memory
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Storage: 2 GB available space
    • Sound Card: DirectX compliant
    • Additional Notes: Joystick, XBox360 Controller For Windows or Analog gamepad
Customer reviews
Customer Review system updated! Learn more
Overall:
Mostly Negative (237 reviews)
Recently Posted
netdjay
383.5 hrs
Posted: August 18
I've played all of the battlecrusier games for many years. After the learning curve, the game is very engaging. It is now mid 2016 and I have YET to find a game with this much depth and freedom.
This is a game where you have to think in order to suirvive.
With all the 4x space games out there now, and all the FPS out there now, this is the one game where you can create your own playstyle. You can go from taking over a starstation to invading a planetary defense system. You can steal enemy craft and even use their own air defense against them. You can be a sniper or have a crew of snipers watch your back as you lead a team of 40 marines into battle. Of course you have close air support knocking down everyting in the sky or any tanks on land that are a threat. And I'm just scratching the surface.
You captain a capital ship with up to 8 fighters at your disposal. These fighters increase their skills as they fly missions. Then of course there's shuttles that your AI can take to either drop off mining drones to mine valuable minerals on planets or sent them to tow abandoned or damaged ships including your cap ship. OR you can cripple an enemy ship and send your crew out to tow it to the nearest friendly starport for a nice reward and experience points. And I'm just scratching the surface.
You can leave your command chair and hop in one of your fighters to get in the fray while your flight officer, combat officer, and other staff will continue to pilot the cap ship and keep her on course to her destination. You can have up to 7 AI fighters as your wingmen to help you attack several enemy targets. Or you can have your cap ship engage in multiple targets with powerful beam weapons or fire and forget missles to engage multiple hostile fighters. Or you can command a fleet of cap ships as a supreme commander to completely overwhelm any opposing forces. And I'm just scratching the surface.
You can have your cap ship orbit a planet and target a military base below. You can then lauch a space to surface missle to destroy sensitive installations or destroy an entire base... all while you're on the planet watching the mushroom plum from miles away. Or you can setup a strike teamy, just outside their early warning system, order a couple of fighters to 'soften' the targets. take out the early warning system, knock out their barracks and air to surface units... then come in with your best marines, tanks and ATV's take over the base... and of course, you can pilot any of the vehicles, or just sit on a distant hill and watch it all unfold through powerful binoculars. You can even take a reserve crew and have one of your shuttles drop them quietly behind enemy lines for a sneak attack while the ememy is focused on your main attack. And if you ever find yourself stranded on a planet or somewhere in space, you can always call for one of your shuttles to come and tow you back to your cap. OR if you're near a friendly base, 'borrow' one of their shuttles and fly back home. AND I'M JUST SCRATCHING THE SURFACE.
I didn't even mention the management, repair and upgrades of your vehicles, the leveling up of troops, dealing with intruders attempting to sabotage or steal your assets, trading, hiring.... the list goes on.
Now, if anyone can find a game, past present or future that is able to pull this off, I'll gladly pay top dollar to add it to my library. But I must warn you. You will be hard pressed to find such a Gem.
I own many games from Sins of a solar empire, Elite Dangerous, Distant worlds, Xcom, Stardrive (1 and 2), X3 Terran conflict, X Rebirth, Horizon, Space Empires V... but I always end up going right back to Universal combat.
I have invested many, MANY hours into this game and will continue to do so until someone can come out with a game that comes close... perhaps star citizen?? (I sincerly doubt it... not for the price)
Believe me, I check often.
I wait for the day the dev comes out with a new facelift to this wonderful addiction.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
samcan244
0.3 hrs
Posted: July 26
Product received for free
the game didnt even have a save and quite or anything back when i tryed it and it didnt do any good for my pc and i couldent even get to my ship
Helpful? Yes No Funny
The Imperial Inquisition
0.8 hrs
Posted: July 11
Yes, yes I know .8 hours played, I downloaded the free version years ago and it has to be said, when the game works and you understand what's going on, the game is great... that happens .8% of the time, I've been playing games since I was about 4, I've even gone so far as to learn game development and programming so I know a bit about what goes into making a game. That being said, this Steam updated version of Universal Combat is a downgrade. It ran once and even then it crashed after about 20-30 minutes, the rest of my .8 of an hor was spent trying to get the game to work, don't get me wrong I love the premise of the game, I have fond memories of playing this around the time it originally came out (presteam) but as it stand I wouldn't but this game. I wouldn't but the Lyrius Conflict either if it uses the same engine (which reading some of the reviews, it must)

To Mr. Smart, I respect you, I really do, you have vision and a drive to create an experience that hasn't been seen before but you must, at some point, be willing to admit you messed up. I understand getting offended when someone inults your baby that you've spent years creating, but you should NEVER call potential customers idiots, cause even an idiot will buy a game and if its not good, if it's not up to par, or content has been left out, eventually they will work out who bamboozled them.
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*Jeo*
0.1 hrs
Posted: July 8
Product received for free
Noooope!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
I love GLaDOS
9.3 hrs
Posted: June 27
Product received for free
I downloaded this game about a year and a half ago, back when it was free (I think when it first came out). And for the past year and a half, i've tried to play this game. But I noticed a "few" issues. 1. There is no tutorial, so in this uber complicated game you are bassicly f**ked. 2. A PDF exisits somewhere on the internet on how to play this game ( I could not find a direct link to the PDF.). 3. Even when/ IF you DO figure out the controls from the PDF, The controls are garbage sound quality is sh*t, Graphics are ok for a remastered 90's game. This game was not worth the money I didnt have to spend. It certainly isnt worth 9.99.
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Running-Target
0.3 hrs
Posted: June 11
UNIVERSAL COMBAT COLLECTORS’ EDITION v2.0 is a capital ship combat simulator, that is a very hard core space combat sim. This is a Derek Smart game, so it has a steep Learning curve and odd UI system. Need to read 3 pdf manuals to figure out how to play this. It worked, looks ok, sounded ok, played hard. Is very Buggy. Has a bunch of instant action senarios. Has older graphics. Also have some FPS combat missions. Released in 2004. UI and Menus are less than intuitive. Tutorial is the Quick Reference PDF manual on store page and links to 2 manuals there too, nothing in-game.
If you like hard core spaceship simulators, you might like to try this game.

I got this game for free, but at time of review this game is listed as 9.99 dollars, i don't recommend paying money for this game. For Free, it might be worth playing around with if you are bored and like this sort of game.

For more info:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SJXBn4TJb2g

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3R7c2Q1-4wQ

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KqvDt13d--8

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TQ8hRuz4r5E

http://www.pcgamer.com/universal-combat-ce-remastered-and-released-for-free-on-steam/

http://www.metacritic.com/game/pc/universal-combat-collectors-edition

http://www.gamespot.com/universal-combat-collectors-edition/reviews/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Universal_Combat

http://www.gamefaqs.com/pc/934438-universal-combat-collectors-edition/faqs?question_title=Universal+Combat+Collectors+Edition

http://www.3000ad.com/games/universal-combat-collectors-edition2/
Helpful? Yes No Funny
demonsmith
32.3 hrs
Posted: June 9
NOT. WORTH.10. DOLLARS.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
NM Communist Nazi
2.6 hrs
Posted: April 28
Would definatly recommed this if you want a nice space war sim i know this games almost as old as me if im right its over 12 years old if so im a few years older lol but anyway this game is pretty cool i mean how many games an you captain a 2 or so kilometer long starship, ok maybe the X2 and X3 games but can you drop into planetry orbit and start wrecking ground bases on X2 or X3 nope and thats what i love is getting out of a space battle and starting to wreck ♥♥♥♥ on the ground haha soooo much fun but read the manual unlike me that was a mistake spent 3 hours at Earth figuring everything out, does have its bugs like most games but its fun so i give it a 7/10
Helpful? Yes No Funny
krecik
0.2 hrs
Posted: April 10
The best spaceSHIP simulator I know of.

Yeah, I played Freespace and X series, not to mention Wing Commander (Privateer spinoff). They all are fine but there you always command what is effectively a fighter. And if you came to UC with the same assumption you will, you were, sorely disappointed.

The UC is not for everyone. First off, you *have* to Read That F*ing Manual, period. Otherwise you will not know not just how to do what you are supposed to do, but even what you are supposed to do in first place. And you are supposed to no less than to take care of your SHIP, a spaceship. With her crew, equipment, armament, subsystems and so on, all while cruising through the emptiness of space. It's not like it's SpaceCimCity. It's more like being in shoes of Captains Kirk, Picard or Janeway. The level of micromanagement is overwhelming at the beginning but in time I found it lands in my personal sweet spot where it is enough of it to keep the game engaging and not enough of it to be bogged down.

If you prefer quick fast paced action you may want to stay away from this game, that's fine. Though if you want to have the feeling of being actual captain, give it a chance despite the learning curve. Besides, every skip' had to learn his ropes, and it always took time.

P.S. I have clocked so little here just because nowdays I don't have that much time to play this game. But I had spent my deal playing earlier versions starting from BC3K, through BCM and ending on non-Steam UC. I wish I could play it more but alas, priorioties and obligations IRL.
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Yeeman
2.6 hrs
Posted: April 2
The best space sim out there.
Many more hours played offline.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
670 of 768 people (87%) found this review helpful
74 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: February 8, 2015
Ah, Universal Combat. Somehow I hoped we had seen the last of Derek Smart. Don't get me wrong, I don't despise the man, but his snarky, combative attitude in the face of the overwhelming evidence regarding his shortcomings as a developer have left me hoping for the day when he retires from public life; that, and I was one of the foolish who purchased Universal Combat when it came out only to discover it was broken and buggy even after several patches and any attempts to challenge this was met by scorn and insult by Derek Smart himself.

This is not a good game. It will not be a good game no matter how many times he changes the name. It IS a very ambitious game, however. To his credit, Derek Smart tried to make a game that pushed hardware and design boundaries. The sad reality is that he failed, but rather than accept this and work with critics to address the problems he chose to attack whatever fanbase he had for pointing out the shortcomings of the game,. Now it is on steam (for free, no less) and that is supposed to diminish your ability to criticise this product, but for those of us who purchased the game when it first came out it just brings back visions of falling through surfaces, user interfaces better suited to spreadsheet software than a game and terrible, game destroying bugs.

I won't address the visuals, which for the time were not bad. I bought the game originally because of the promise of fps and ship based exploration and combat, and what I ended up with were two halves that never really seemed to fit together or work even on their own. Attempting to hold the two halves together is an interface that is poorly thought out (see how long it takes you to figure out how quit for a start) and overcomplicated with fields and windows of redundant settings best handled with a single button or accessible from a quick bar.

It's unfortunate (but not surprising) to see that time has not changed Derek at all; looking at the comments on steam he continues to attack naysayers with the same eagerness he did on his own forums once, and that is a shame. I would have hoped that the years had brought him some wisdom about dealing with critics and fans alike, and that rather than insult their intelligence and rebuff their concerns with snarky comments he would have hired a PR representative who has less of an irrational response to criticism.

You will likely play Universal Combat regardless of my review, and I invite you to do so. You will also discover that the game has some nebulous design decisions and unresolved bugs that will hamper your enjoyment. Just do not expect your feedback or criticism to be well received or heeded at all by the game's designer as he has great difficulty accepting flaws in his work, though he will gladly take all of your praise.
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291 of 352 people (83%) found this review helpful
75 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: February 10, 2015
"This scenario is completely free form and is designed to be role played using your imagination."

Sounds good! Lets see....what am i going to play....?
I think i will be a terran paramedic! That sounds fun, doesnt it?

Ok, what to do? There are no orders. There is no fleet. There is a whole lot of nothing and me in an unarmed ship. Oooh wait there actually is a ship in distress. Thats a job for us mateys! We approach! All men to their stations! We are going to doooo... -nothing. Thats right. There is no action we could take to actually help the distressed fellow.
Can that truly be? Lets check the discussion board. Some other guys also wondered what the purpose of that career might be.

Aha, thats interesting. Everyone should be glad that the developer gave us so many different possibilities to play the game and we are such dumb idiots that we cant use our imagination to play the game properly. Yes thats right! Its all in our imagination! Sit in your bathtub and you are the captain of a nuclear submarine on its mission to save earth. Imagination YAAAAYYYYY!!! So much fun!!!

Well, lets try something different then. A military carreer seems more appropriate for the game setting. What to do, what to do? Ok i figured it out a little. I embarked on a planet, i ran around, i even shot something. I dont know exactly what i did it for. The planet was marked as hostile. Hurray for imagination! I shoot at the enemy base with my spaceship destroying some cardboard building like thingies - supposed to be a military installation. And nothing else happens.
Lets have a look at the forum again. Do my actions have any impact? Not really. Bases rebuild themselfes after you destroy them. Spaceships spawn randomly. Everything resets, if you just wait long enough.

You have a huge galaxy filled with meaningless balls (planets) and ships and no purpose at all.
--> Imagination
Problem is: With an empty sheet and a pencil you could truly use your imagination. With this game your possibilities to actually interact with anything are very limited. You can fly to it, you can land/dock or shoot it. Thats about it then. And whatever you do, it does not matter in the slightest.

People, dont get fooled. This game is not complex, it is just poorly designed. You can fly your ship using the cursor keys. There is no huge background mechanic that wants to be figured out. It was hollow, it is hollow and it will be hollow in all future releases (please let it be the last one...it is just an unsatisfying waste of time).
If you want something complicated and fun, try dwarf fortress. Thats a game to love!

I bought the Battlecruiser Millenium Edition back then...i was so incredibly disappointed and furious. When i lingered in the shop and spotted someone who grabbed the game box i would go and talk them out of buying the game. I hope i saved some folks a little money and the huge dissapointment of this franchise.

RIP

--------------------------
EDIT: 29.07.2015

With the "DLC - The Lyrus Conflict" it gets even more ridiculous. This developer is selling his idea for a game (in my opinion it has never been complete) in a new coat over and over and over.

Derek Smart, 24.07.2015: "Yeah, the DLC (Lyrus Conflict) is basically lot of refinements, and graphics overhaul. No new features. That's for Universal Combat Advanced which is full blown sequel."
http://steamcommunity.com/app/345580/discussions/0/613957600540266427/#p7

Derek Smart, 07.02.2015: "But basically, if I do end up doing it as planned (Universal Combat Advanced), it will have the same gameplay features as this 2015 remastering of UCCE v2.0 but with a complete graphics overhaul..."
http://steamcommunity.com/app/345580/discussions/0/606068060825246172/

How people still dont see through this charade is beyond my grasp. He is doing it since 20 years.

I know, i know, we are all waiting for that capital ship simulator since we seen Battlestar Galactica / Star Wars. We got to wait some more. This game series is not it and never will be. Dont support the shady business of false advertising.
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523 of 662 people (79%) found this review helpful
917 people found this review funny
Recommended
0.1 hrs on record
Posted: February 12, 2015
the uninstall worked perfectly
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
105 of 124 people (85%) found this review helpful
4 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
1.0 hrs on record
Posted: May 18, 2015
So.....this game.

Putting aside any personal isssues with Derek Smart (and let's be honest, a lot of people have issues with him), let's try to be as objective as possible in this review...

What exactly is UC and does it live up to its claims?


It's a 'do anything in space' simulator. You want to command a battlecruiser? Check. You want to be a Marine on a planet shooting stuff? Check. You want to fly from a planet to space and dock with that carrier you see over there? Check.

The problem is...well....the problems are...

One: Excessive micro management: Why for instance, should the commander of a large ship have to manually set power levels? Why can't....say....the crrew AI do that for you and if you want to then alter it, you can? By default, there isnt't enough power to go around and you have to go in and manually set it. Or, say you want to send....I don't know, four Marines and a tank and a pilot to a planet. You have to tell each individual what to do. There's no group option.

Two: HUD issues. The HUD itself isn't intuitive at all, the three MFDs at the bottom of the screen don't easily tell you what they are, the radar is 2d, not 3D and that is confusing as well as you got no clue if the enemy target is above or blow you.

Three: Questionable vehicle physics. Why should a shuttle be able to stop on a dime in space? I can understand tanks or ATVs stopping quickly on a planet, that makes sense, however...a shuttle, in space, you cut the power and it instantly stops? Really? Yes, I'm aware it's explained away as some technical stuff but that's an easy and cheap way to get around the issue.

So what are the good points then given I've laid out some issues with it?

One: You can literally go anywhere and do anything you want to. For instance in a free roaming scenario, I have taken a battlecruiser from Ear to the Moon, landed troops, done exercises, got picked up by the shuttle and flown back, all without cutscenes or scripting.

Two: It's seamless once it loads. Yep that's a big, big plus. You want to go from planet to space? Get above a certain height and push a button, then confirm it (again....micro management issues but....), there's a few seconds worth of animation and you're in space. Same for going to a planet.s, get close, it'll ask establish planetfall, say yes,a nd sit back.

It's pretty. Oh yes it is, it's some of the most atmospheric graphics in a space game....and you feel as if you can actually go to that nebula, or that planet....or even that base and dock there

You are not the hero. Okay, this is astrange one but....most games are all about the player, right? Well, UC, CE isn't. There's an entire universe going on, things happen regardless of you being around or not. You can be in a system and go off for a few days, come back and find that station you were docked at got attacked and changed hands, or there's a war on a planet that broke out while you were going there.

However....I personally wouldn't recommend it unless you want to spend a LOT of time reading and learning. It's not a simple pick up and play game in the least, it takes time, dedication and (sadly) figuring things out on your own so you don't have to deal with Derek Smart to enjoy it. Don't get me wrong, once you like it, it's definitely good but I do feel many, many people will be put off by Derek Smart and won't even look at it.

If UC was made by somebody else and released on Steam for free, it would get a much, much better reception, I can absolutely say that for certain.

Either way, although this has not recommended at the top, try try it out. Make up your own mind and be prepared for a lot of reading and learning too.
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152 of 193 people (79%) found this review helpful
25 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
2.0 hrs on record
Posted: February 10, 2015
"Don't Alt+Tab" - Derek Smart, developer of Universal Combat CE.

You know there is a serious problem with the game when even the developer tells you not to alt+tab, even in the collector's edition. I alt+tabbed anyway and it crashed the game which is a real shame because I had to read through the 93-page PDF Game Manual just to find out how to move my ship forward.

Universal Combat CE is just another renamed, slightly updated version of Derek Smart's Battlecruiser 3000AD series from 1996. Much like its NINE predecessors (that's right, there are 9 previous versions of this same game), Universal Combat is horribly plagued by gamebreaking bugs, poor interface and design, horrendously glitchy gameplay, extremely boring and poorly written storyline, no tutorial and lack of explanation for basically everything in the game. The controls and ship GUI are so confusing, it will leave you scratching your head at pretty much everything.

I wouldn't even pay a dollar for this game. It is garbage.
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185 of 245 people (76%) found this review helpful
41 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
0.3 hrs on record
Posted: February 8, 2015
Ohhhhhhh nostalgia..... how I hate you. You Make me play a game I thought was epic as a young gamer, and then you go and beat me over the head with it years later.....

When I saw UC was free on steam I downloaded it almost instantly. "MY CHILDHOOD NEEDS THIS" said my brain, not knowing what horrors were to come. Oh the bugs.... Oh the nonexistant story..... Oh the wtf moments. I played the game for about 20 minutes, and of that 20 minutes, 15 was recovering from game breaking crashes, first at the video options screen trying to change resolutions, then after trying to make planetfall on some red thing I found in a random spot on the map. Then it crashed on the startup. You know, I think it was telling me to leave it alone, to spare the fond memories of me actually playing the game. You know what, thank you UC:CE, you spaired my childhood memories from having to be corrected by crashing before I could actually play.

0/10 would not collect this edition.
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83 of 112 people (74%) found this review helpful
6 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
2.7 hrs on record
Posted: May 10, 2015
Well the dev said he was going to release a patch for this version to fix all sorts of things but just decided to cancel it because of negative reviews. No wonder he is treated like he is. What a jerk. Don't bother with it. (And the patch is 5 years overdue)
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150 of 219 people (68%) found this review helpful
22 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: February 8, 2015
This game is as broken as the first day it was released. It has a premise with potential, but it is ruined by the consistent freeze that happens on the first FPS mission. The resolution is hideous and the graphics are still gag-inducing. I'll put in as much effort into this review as Derek Smart (the creator) put into this game: little.

Couldn't get through the first mission due to game-breaking bug. 0/10. F for effort. I came in excited, then came out absolutely disgusted.

It's almost as big of a failure as 3000AD. I'd rather play Takedown: Red Sabre; that's how broken this is.
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72 of 95 people (76%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
0.3 hrs on record
Posted: March 13, 2015
Obtuse, convoluted haphazard design and gameplay trying to pass off as a complex rewarding experience that takes time to get into.

Even for free, don't be fooled into wasting your time on this. Too many good games worth playing out there to waste it here.
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299 of 463 people (65%) found this review helpful
165 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
2.3 hrs on record
Posted: February 6, 2015
Calling this game a "collector's edition" is like calling a used red solo cup a "goblet fit for only a king's mouth". Imagine a big disgusting bag of trash, and then dumping that into a septic tank and taking a long bath in there. That's basically what you're going to get with this abomination of a video game. The following two segments illustrates my first two playthroughs:

1. Spawned as the chestical soldier on Earth (elite combat marine with two gigantic chest pads no matter what gender) and some alpha guys that looked like me and were friendly started running up to me shooting. Infantry controls don't work with the "fully supported" xbox controller (but do with vehicles) so I switched to mouse and keyboard for this despite configuring it beforehand for the controller. Aiming with the mouse is a challenge considering the mouse is inverted by default for some reason. I killed one of them, sprinted towards the nearest building, clipped through it and was instantly killed.

2. Spawned as the chestical soldier again and, after slogging through the awful manual, figured out how to enter and drive a SUV with a machine gun ontop around the base. The controls are overly sensitive and incredibily awful. You have to directly target things if your vehicle has a free moving turret, instead of pivoting your mouse or something similar to manuver them around. I tried running people over but they just collect on your hood and get moved around. I shot at a giant yet noiseless patrolling tank a few times, with no reaction, then shot off into the desert by holding the "Down" direction on the left analog stick. The same stick the steering is controlled with, yeah, smart. The main developer, Derek Smart, didn't want anyone to see the truly awful level design outside of this base on Earth that also had truly awful level design, so the base defenses automatically started firing rockets at me as I drove far away from it. I drove over a lake, then into an ocean with my open-air car, and didn't drown even upon exiting. Since I had no idea where to go after spending about 10 minutes or more letting the car drive effortlessly over the oceanfloor, I quit the game and didn't bother looking at the rest of the game until the next day.

I have never dealt with a more needlessly complicated system of learning how to do anything. Even tabletop games, which can be fairly complicated, are more readily available to learn than this "turn to page XYZ to even sort of understand what I'm talking about" nonsense. This might fly in the days of Wing Commander and such, but the draw of certain "old school" style game elements just doesn't exist anymore unless you're playing an enthusiast level flight simulator or something. Seriously, page 4 of the tutorial throws every single blinking light at you at once, gives it a dumb 3 letter combination, and says to pause the game and just stare at the UI for awhile. How is that intuitive, or learning anything as you're doing it? By comparison, Elite Dangerous has a similarly complicated UI, with a lot going on in front of you, as well as the need to access the computers on the right and left sides of you at times, but the tutorials are broken down into small scenarios focusing on the basics before anything complicated. Slapping together a couple integrated Word docs that tells you how to play is just lazy, plain and simple. Telling me "go here, fly around the target craft at half speed because I said so, then shoot at it but DON'T KILL IT OR YOU LOSE" is not intuitive. Wouldn't "Collector's Edition" imply you made some improvements to these clearly outdated systems? Or is this part of the code that was only touched in one day, as detailed on Twitter? How does telling us the equivalent of "only the commander really works" in the game description on Steam, then giving us a bad experience in that one single class, tell us that the full upcoming game will not be completely bad as well?

I'm wearing headphones as I play this, and the crew randomly babbling things as soon as I jump into a ship makes me think this game is turning me into a schizophrenic. Is this the lost souls of those who played the game calling for me to join them in the underworld?

The controls are awful, and I'd like to re-emphasize that here. For example. instead of using the escape key to pause the game and display relevant background information like saving and such, there's 5 million different uses for Alt+*whatever key* instead. There's nothing in the key bindings of this game that screams "intuitive" or "well thought out". In fact, everything about this game's control scheme seems to indicate that it was designed to be played in the Eighth Circle of the underworld from Dante Alighieri's "Divine Comedy", alongside being whipped and having your body immersed in a lake of boiling pitch.

There may be some improvements I'm not aware of compared to the base game it originates from, but would you eat a turd if it has pink frosting and sprinkles on it? To me, and likely many others, this is just another failure of many attached to Derek Smart.
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