Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Space Hulk!

No, not the recently re-released board game version. Though I do love every bit of the new version, especially the new Genestealer minis. It makes me sad that we can't play on a setup like this:

Nope, this is about the pc version that fell out of the wayback machine and landed in my lap. If you have ever felt an overwhelming desire to have your ass handed to you by an ancient pc game then friends, you have found your new lord and master!

I'm not saying that this game was impossible to win. I mean, people have climbed Mt. Everest several times right? But there was no let up at any point. Even the first level, which was supposed to be a tutorial, made absolutely NO apology for taking you to the cleaners, staining all your dress shirts pink, handing you back the wrong pants and then overcharging you.

Using a First Person view point you guided your Space Marines thought the corridors of a space hulk, completing missions that were taken directly out of the Space Hulk board game that was available at that time. You could point to each individual view point to switch which marine you had direct control over at any given time. Whatever marines you weren't controlling would defend themselves automatically and there was a tactical map available where you could plot out movement paths for your marines to follow.

As you advanced through the maps towards your mission goal, genestealers would constantly be stalking your squad. Combat was point and click however in the background it was rolling the dice so your normal amount of Jams would keep happening. The game was very effective at keeping the tension high. Unless your marines had line of sight on any genestealers then all you got were red blips on the tactical map. If they managed to sneak up on your marines or flank them from the sides then their viewpoint immediately snow crashed and you felt very, very alone.

Personally I only remember beating maybe the first few missions. And yet, not only did I still go back for more, over the years my brother and I have purchased two full versions of the actual boardgame! The newest one was built to an amazing level of quality and if you have the opportunity to pick it up I highly recommend it.

As for the PC game, if you have an evening to kill, really feel the need to be slaughtered mercilessly by genestealers and can actually find a copy than totally hunt this down and give it a try. Otherwise, try these guys as they've built a very unofficial version of the boardgame to download and play. It will also kick your ass pretty competely.

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