Starfleet Bridge Commander  

Starfleet Bridge Commander

 

Starfleet Bridge Commander

 

Starfleet Bridge Commander

 

Starfleet Bridge Commander

 

Starfleet Bridge Commander

 

Starfleet Bridge Commander


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Starfleet Bridge Commander

Platform: PC

Developer: Totally Games

Publisher: Activision

 

Genre: Tactical Space Combat

 

ETA: April 2002

Starfleet Bridge Commander 

We've had plenty of outer space flight combat games over the years with tiny little celestial fighter planes dog fighting through nebulas, asteroid belts, and other  astronomical entities. Arguably one of the best developers in the genre is Totally Games, who are responsible for the X-Wing series of Star Wars games among  others. Now they're stepping into the Star Trek universe, doing away with the tiny fighters, and going with the deliciously gigantic warships this time in Starfleet Bridge Commander on the PC. 

Since Bridge Commander is going with the large starships as the game's weapon of choice that means the maneuverability won't be nearly as nimble as something like an X-Wing. While players will still have to try and avoid being hit by photon torpedoes and phaser fire their main goal will be to position their ship relative to the ship or ships they're facing off against so to best lay down some damage on the enemy while keeping the collateral damage from the attackers down to a low roar. As the game's title suggests, players won't be in as direct control of the ship either.  They are the captain after all, so it will be up to the bridge crew to adequately perform the orders being given out.

The perspective of the combat will not be from an over-the-head outside the ship sort of camera view, or cockpit view here, but from the captain's chair of the starships at players' disposal, in this case Galaxy and Sovereign class starships. There will be the officer at the helm, tactical officer, engineering, the first officer and so forth seated around the bridge as you belt out commands. Players will even be able to watch these officers soar through the air when consoles explode in ture Star Trek fashion. All the while the battles at hand will be seen through the view screen. The visuals themselves are looking pretty good on the bridge, but it's the ship models receiving the majority of the attention here, already enjoying quite a bit of detail thus far into development.

Starfleet Bridge Commander     Starfleet Bridge Commander

But the game isn't about blowing up spaceships just for the sake of blowing up spaceships, there's still a plot here. Essential a sun blows up and the player's ship gets hit by the blast, resulting in the captain dying, leaving the player's character in charge. Now the crew has to find out who is responsible for this unexplained  occurrence all while dealing with the usual assortment of Cardassians, Klingons, Romulans, and other species of the region. Helping the player along are Data and 
Captain Picard, voiced by Brent Spiner and Patrick Stewart respectively. They'll be in contact throughout the game and help players to get their feet wet in the 
game's tutorial. 

But while getting chummy with Data and Picard is all well and good, the crux of the game is the combat. Totally Games have gained a well deserved reputation for  making good space flight combat games with their X-Wing series. It will be interesting to see how they translate all of this to a title where the vessels are larger and far more cumbersome, not to mention finding out what the hell these Pattern Delta, Gamma, Omega, and such that they bark out on the TV shows actually look like. 

- Mr. Nash

Review: Star Trek Away Team Review (PC)

Review: Star Trek Elite Force Review (PC)