Yeah, I’m talking about the original Star Command, not that supposed mobile ‘spiritual successor’ from 2013, but the real deal. Star Command is a DOS RPG developed by Strategic Simulations, Inc. (the D&D ‘Gold Box’ people) which was released in 1988. So, if you’re here to read all about that cute little ‘space game’ from 2013, you’re in the wrong sector of space, motherf*cker!
For me, at the time, playing this game was a no-brainer. It was totally in-line with other party-based RPGs, namely Wasteland, Dungeons & Dragons: Pool of Radiance, and so on.
Star Command allowed you to create a party of eight characters, which blew my mind, because a lot of other games at the time only allowed you to create a party of, at most, 6 characters, so that was pretty revolutionary. You and your crew are assigned missions by Star Command, the organization responsible for keeping humanity safe. You must gather your crew, equip them with what you can, and complete your mission for the greater good of man-and-alien kind alike.
This is, unfortunately, a difficult task. The galaxy at large is a dangerous place, filled with dangers of every imaginable kind, from pirate ships that will ambush you as you try to deliver food to hungry colonists, to alien creatures that you must battle your way past to reach your goal. As your characters complete missions, they gain in power, allowing them to take on greater challenges. The goal in Star Command is to complete each mission assigned to your crew, from your first anti-piracy patrol all the way through to the climactic final mission to save mankind.
Of course, not all games of Star Command are the same. There are many missions that will be assigned to your group when you play for the first time that will not necessarily be assigned the next time you play (and there are many missions that may not appear the first time you play the game, either). This allows for a role-playing adventure that you can finish several times, playing a slightly different game each time.
Careful planning is required before, and during, each jaunt into space.
Careful planning is required before, and during, each jaunt into space. Your crew’s skills and equipment must be balanced, so that no critical skill is missing. In Star Command, good strategy can often overcome superior firepower. In addition to combat, both in space and on the ground, Star Command emphasizes exploration and character interaction with the plot – while your crew is exploring space stations and secret enemy bases on exotic planets, they will encounter many types of alien creatures and devices. Many are hostile, but some can be valuable sources of information.
As I mentioned above, this is NOT the Star Command from 2013, and honestly that game is “OK” in it’s own right, but in my opinion really has no business using the venerable STAR COMMAND name, as it has little to do with the original. Sure, you may scoff and say, “Well, it’s in space, and you control a spaceship and its crew, so yeah, it’s the same, right?” WRONG. The original Star Command had a depth that the cheesy new version simply cannot compete with. Eh, okay, rant over.
So, I bet you’re totally stoked to play the proper version, am I right? Well, never fear space cadet, you can do that very thing right NOW, by downloading it here!