Poor Man's Starbound?

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AuthorTopic: Poor Man's Starbound?
Mongolian Barbeque
Member # 1528
Profile #50
That's quite a list there, B.S.C. Thanks for posting all that.

Could you tell us which ones are for Mac? I found one or two of these on the internet, but found out they were Windows only. I hate to be so provencal about this, but...

Prior to 1999, I had a Compaq Pressario made in late 1993 or so. I had only a handful of games, none of them being of the space-conquest variety: SimCity (the original), Chess (natch), Maxwell's Maniac, Chip's Challenge (great game, wish it would work on a Mac), Aces Over Europe, and a few others that I never played much and can't remember offhand. So by the time I really entered the "modern" and mainstream computer game world, with the purchase of my iBook in early 2001, there were things like Star Wars Pod Racer, Riven, StarCraft, and Age of Empires II — all great games, but again no space conquest games like Galactic Core or any of the others you mentioned, until I got GC, MoO, and MoO2.

And you're absolutely right about MoO2 having some of the best music in a computer game. I haven't played it in several months, but can still easily recall all the musical pieces accompanying each race, as well as the in-game music.
Posts: 907 | Registered: Monday, July 15 2002 07:00
Infiltrator
Member # 4592
Profile #51
For the Mac. . . not many, unfortunately.

Spaceward Ho!, but that's already been said.

Ambrosia is mostly a Mac company, so Escape Velocity as well as their older games are all Mac oriented.

Universe II is for Mac (it's very old), as well as Starflight (I and II, I think. One of them definitely was) These games can be found in places dedicated for Mac abandonware.

Master of Orion III also exists for the Mac.

The others are PC.

I don't know of any other modern Space games for the Mac. Unfortunately I made the move to PC back in '99 because I wanted to have more gaming options.

Sorry I couldn't have been of more help.

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quote:

"I suffer from spiritual malaise," said Cugel meaningfully. "which manifest itself in outburst of vicious rage. I implore you to depart, lest, in an uncontrollable spasm, I cut you in three pieces with my sword, or worse, I invoke magic."
Random Jack Vance Quote Manual Generator Apparatus (Cugel's Saga)
Posts: 604 | Registered: Sunday, June 20 2004 07:00
Lack of Vision
Member # 2717
Profile #52
I quite enjoyed Escape Velocity: Nova. I found it fun to run around with my fleet trying to take over planets. These air traffic controllers are rather touchy - if you insult them they send the planetary defense fleet to blow you to atoms! Of course, if you knock them off, then the planet pays you a steady stream of income as they cower in fear of your awesome power.

I never liked Pillars of Garandel. I know some people seem to really like it, but I just kept wondering why the captain of the horsemen never rode one. And why my character had such a stupid mullet.

In order to keep this post relevant - I bet the captain of the galactic core fleet has a mullet.

Z

[ Sunday, March 27, 2005 03:24: Message edited by: Zorro ]

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Pan Lever: Seventeen apple roving mirror moiety. Of turned quorum jaggedly the. Blue?
Posts: 186 | Registered: Thursday, February 27 2003 08:00
Mongolian Barbeque
Member # 1528
Profile #53
Thanks for that info, B.S.C. I'll keep an eye peeled like a grape for Universe II and either of the Starflights.

I immensely enjoyed Escape Velocity and EV: Override (the latter more than the former). I expect to really like EV: Nova. I'll probably get the demo CD and register it after a few months with Geneforge 3.

Pillars of Garendal struck me as garbage. The art was nice, but the gameplay and story were pretty dang awful. Wandering around big empty screen after big empty screen fighting random beasties, with no clear idea of where you should be heading or what you're supposed to be doing. And to think they charged me $10 for that demo CD... And why, praytell, could they not have fit it onto their main demo CD? Oh well.

Yes, I'm glad the Geneforge games incorporate the "green zone" feature. It would be such a drag without that.

[ Sunday, March 27, 2005 14:57: Message edited by: Icshi ]
Posts: 907 | Registered: Monday, July 15 2002 07:00
Mongolian Barbeque
Member # 1528
Profile #54
quote:
Originally written by Icshi:

I really enjoyed the first two Escape Velocity games, though, and would very much like to at least have an opportunity to generate a first-hand antipathy towards the third one!
Well, I finally got myself a copy of EV Nova—and finally got it to work—and having played through four of the six main storylines I must admit to being singularly unimpressed, the main reasons being:

1. The story in EV Override was fantastic, and great fun. Nova's was clumsy, badly written, incoherent, and nonsensical. Also, most of the missions didn't fit together and were more or less pointless.

2. The setting was too humanocentric. There were no aliens worth speaking of. For me the alien races in Override was one of the best things about that game. They were creative, interesting, and fun. Nova just had three main branches of humanity, with only the Polaris being of any interest culturally, and only then mainly because of their technology. The Nova universe was big, but surprisingly bland and unvaried. When I explored in Override it was a few planet-less systems before you reached Miranu space... and from there you get into Azdgari space... then Igdraza space, and so on. In Nova as I explored I was constantly thinking "More humans. Hmmm. [jump, jump, jump] Oh, more humans again. [jump, jump, jump, jump] Good grief, even more humans." And so on. Nova's idea of "exploration" was "do some tedious jumping around in dozens of planet-less systems in the north and eastern sectors of the galactic edge waiting for your fuel cells to recharge as you look at asteroids floating by in a high-interference haze, with a few unresponsive Krypt pods floating around." Not my idea of an exploration adventure. And one mission really got my hopes up—launching a probe from the abhorred ringed world of Kont at the southern fringe of the galaxy—but that's all it ended up being. You launch the probe and return to Earth. Whoop de doo. But I was assured my actions would lead to possible first contact with an extragalactic alien race several centuries down the road. Well then, I should be bouncing off the walls with excitement, shouldn't I? I don't know what I'm complaining about. :rolleyes:

3. Another aspect of its huamnocentrism was its sledge-hammer, over-the-top theistic humanism which got tiring very quickly. The whole idea of humanity evolving into a god was both ridiculous and offensive. I can only assume that the people who wrote the story haven't being paying attention to what humanity has been doing for the last several thousand years. We're not getting better, we're getting worse! It was like saying "Sure, given a few millennia, and a unifying political structure, a puddle of puke will evolve into a freshly baked pepperoni pizza." I can tolerate some of this kind of thinking, but with this game is was intolerably pervasive and unrelenting. No moderation, no subtlety.

4. Having to start with a fresh pilot file whenever I wanted to play a new storyline was a major aggravation. If I had known this was going to happen, I would've made more regularly-spaced backups so that I could return to a previous time when I had a good ship and lots of money but wasn't embroiled in any interstellar hanky-panky. As it is, I had to spend several hours getting back to a reasonable monetary level without accepting any missions because there was no way of telling where a seemingly innocuous mission might unwittingly and unwillingly take you (like, say, agreeing to go have a peek at the deserted Vell-os homeworld, and you somehow end up being enslaved until the end of the game). But since most mission strings only give you the chance to join it once, I often had to take up a mission to make sure I didn't miss a new string. Grrrr.

However, it wasn't all bad. The ships were great—I'll give it that. The overall graphics were tremendous, but good graphics are not all-important. I shouldn't have to explain that particular point to anyone who likes Spiderweb Software...

The asteroid mining was great, too—I enjoyed that tremendously.

But overall I'd have to give it my stamp of disapproval for being narrow-minded, shoddy, pretentious balderdash. It had lots of potential but the designers tripped over their own feet and fell face-down in an under-evolved pepperoni pizza.
Posts: 907 | Registered: Monday, July 15 2002 07:00
...b10010b...
Member # 869
Profile Homepage #55
Agreed. To me, EV Nova played like a second-rate EV/EVO plugin, as if it really, really wanted to be Frozen Heart and couldn't quite get there. (Incidentally, Frozen Heart was awesome, but that's beside the point.)

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The Empire Always Loses: This Time For Sure!
Posts: 9973 | Registered: Saturday, March 30 2002 08:00
Electric Sheep One
Member # 3431
Profile #56
Ah, come on; was EVN really that bad? I'll grant that it's story had nothing like the moment in EVO where you first meet the Miranu, and that in general few of the plots made much sense if you thought about them. But there was a lot of good atmosphere to it, I thought. Polaris space, for instance, always felt serenely alien to me.

I was actually a bit disappointed in Frozen Heart. It was better than Nova in most ways, but it was clearly trying to be even better than it was, by throwing in an amazing collection of cool ingredients, but never really doing anything to mix them together. It was a story with an ancient frozen superweapon, a newly invented superweapon, an ancient vanished empire, a contemporary decaying empire, a couple of unrequited loves, a missionary religious faith, a distant martyred father, a growing black hole that threatened the galaxy, and the title 'Frozen Heart'. And all these elements just passed each other like sprites in the night. The thing was well enough done that I was looking for a great thematic convergence, like in Mann's Doctor Faustus, and I never got it.

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We're not doing cool. We're doing pretty.
Posts: 3335 | Registered: Thursday, September 4 2003 07:00
...b10010b...
Member # 869
Profile Homepage #57
I think that was partly deliberate; FH's designer was more or less explicitly trying to create a believable universe rather than just a setting for a plot, and as such it wasn't necessary for everything to fit neatly into everything else. I believe the story actually started out as a novel; unfortunately, although I've read the novel, I remember little enough of it that I can't venture an opinion on whether it all held together better in that form.

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The Empire Always Loses: This Time For Sure!
Posts: 9973 | Registered: Saturday, March 30 2002 08:00
Apprentice
Member # 3920
Profile Homepage #58
Well, going back to the original concept of the 3 YEAR OLD POST!!! I didn't like SBII, or Galactic Core. It didn't have the interest in it like I felt for MOOII. Yes, I have had that game for eternity (least, it feels like that). The opening to it ALONE was what amaized me--very Presto Studios (may they rest in glorious peace....damn them :P ).

As for MOOII right now, I am REALLY MAD! OS X has destroyed it, as the poor game won't run in Classic Mode! I have tried to get updates, but there aren't any available since MOOII isn't supported anymore. Stinky! I want to play it so badly, but I don't want to install OS 9 and boot into it every time I want to play JUST THAT. Too bad there isn't a utility that you can use that decodes an OS 9 program and carbonizes it--I would love that!!

As for cons to MOOII, I have 2: 1) On a large map, getting 32,767 research points is FAR too easy. This is due to the fact that they used a "Short Variable" in the game, instead of a "Long Variable" (I do this in some of these games...pick apart how they programmed it...stupid programming classes...). They made a Super-Long variable (unlistable) for the money, why the frell couldn't they have done that for the RP points!!!!! GAH!

2) Comps are too easy...I needed to resort to an editor to amp up the comps (which fix them REAL GOOD ;) ). Simply put, the AI used for the default seemed, even on Torture Mode, to "freeze" if you teched up too fast by dedicating everything to it. (I spend a decade or two on research, then go to expanding. It worked...but it also broke A LOT of comps...).

Other than that, I love MOOII, and STILL DO!!! Anyone get it to run on OS X somehow w/o crashing?

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"I am not stubborn, your just stupid."
Posts: 40 | Registered: Saturday, January 24 2004 08:00
Mongolian Barbeque
Member # 1528
Profile #59
It's amazing that you mention Master of Orion II. That is the LORD AND GOD of all galactic conquest strategy games. It is one of my favorite games PERIOD.

A few months ago I got a new iMac G5 running OS X. I had an iBook SE running 9.0.2 that I've used for years now. A lot of my OS 9 games run fine in Classic, but some of my favorites like MoO II and Ferazel's Wand don't. That really irks me. Fortunately, a few weeks ago I decided to purge my iBook harddrive and re-install OS 9 and use it as a gaming platform for such applications that dont' run in Classic. MoO II also has this great option for doing a full install—you don't have to put the CD in to run it. My iBook software was really messed up, but a wipe and re-install did wonders. It runs so fast now, and MoO II runs beautifully. So for the last couple of weeks I've been playing it rather obsessively. (Zorro—that's the main reason why I've been so tardy sending back those GC multiplayer games. I know my excuses were "I've also been pretty busy this week, with one thing or another" and "I've also had to deal with some computer problems, and doing some tedious file-shuffling" but this was only half of the truth.)

At any rate, if you have enough money and have enough favorite games that only run in OS 9 and not Classic, it may be worth it to buy some elcheapo used old iMac or iBook to use as a gaming platform like I'm now doing. And Apple's recent insane decision to switch to Intel processors a couple of years from now makes the importance of an old OS 9 type machine even greater. Because soon OS 9 apps won't even run in Classic. (Even the ones that run in Classic now!)

I've come up with a rather long list of ways to improve the game. Mind you, it's a fabulous game the way it is, but there's always room for improvement. I indulge in a daydream that some company will put out an improved Master of Orion II: Ultima Edition that runs in OS X. If you're interested, I can type up this list and post it here. I tried to find a MoO II forum somewhere to share this pipe dream with, but all the MoO II fan sites to be existant but dormant.

I've heard Master of Orion III was absolute garbage—just reading the billions of negative reviews on Amazon.com was enough to convince me I didn't want to fork out money for it, despite it being OS X native. Hence the heightened vividness of my pipe dream...

Fortunately, the original Master of Orion runs perfectly in Classic. I've been having a wee bit of fun with that, too, in the guise of "testing it's compatiblity" with OS X.

EDIT: I should add that MoO II seems to work somewhat in Classic. But the colors are messed up and it crashes like a character in a J.G. Ballard novel—all of which renders it virtually unplayable. I've done some thorough searching online, and this seems to be the problem with everybody, nobody's been able to get it to work properly.

[ Thursday, August 04, 2005 21:00: Message edited by: Icshi ]
Posts: 907 | Registered: Monday, July 15 2002 07:00
Apprentice
Member # 3920
Profile Homepage #60
Well Icshi, sounds like your in the same boat I am in. MacSoft apparently claims that they hold no support for the game, nor did they ever (Micropose or w/e it was did--they don't exist anymore, or so I have heard, nor do any of their offices, or so I have heard....)

If this is true, I say those of us with Programming abilities just write to them specifically saying that we are Disgruntled Game Necromancers who wish to request the Source Code from them--to improve it, upgrade/update it, credit them for the original, and generally release it from that point FREE!! No charge on them, no legal issues they have to keep track of. If they abandon the stupid thing and claim it not theirs, why not!?

I found why: they claim it not theirs, but they don't claim it as abandonware--let alone among the small crowd of games to belong to the "We don't mind if you take our source code since we don't make money off this anymore" games. SERIOUSLY! Whoever makes this game needs to just release the damned source and let us take a hack at it! What can happen? They loose the measily $100 (if that) they get a month from the backstock being sold!?

There is an illegal way of doing it...a decompiler program (they have them for developers; very powerful things) could be used to nab it. Unfortunatly, I know of none for mac--let alone one that would generate it into C or w/e language it was made in!! (Usually uses Assembly...which would mean you decompile it and then carbonize it. Good if you want the game, but if I get the source, I want to fix that damned RP point bug!!!!)

Anyway, that is my shtick. ta

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"I am not stubborn, your just stupid."
Posts: 40 | Registered: Saturday, January 24 2004 08:00
Mongolian Barbeque
Member # 1528
Profile #61
< preservationist topic bump >
Posts: 907 | Registered: Monday, July 15 2002 07:00
Off With Their Heads
Member # 4045
Profile Homepage #62
Wow. There are some illustrious names here.

To try to stay vaguely on topic, the only space-conquest game I've played all the way through is the original EV. I played a bit of EVN, but I could never get into it, and I'm a little frightened of GC because of its reputation. I've never touched MoO 1 or 2.

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Arancaytar: Every time you ask people to compare TM and Kel, you endanger the poor, fluffy kittens.
Smoo: Get ready to face the walls!
Ephesos: In conclusion, yarr.

Kelandon's Pink and Pretty Page!!: the authorized location for all things by me
The Archive of all released BoE scenarios ever
Posts: 7968 | Registered: Saturday, February 28 2004 08:00
Shaper
Member # 5450
Profile Homepage #63
quote:
Originally written by Icshi:

< preservationist topic bump >
You just want it because its your topic. :P

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I'll put a Spring in your step.
:ph34r:
Posts: 2396 | Registered: Saturday, January 29 2005 08:00
Mongolian Barbeque
Member # 1528
Profile #64
Not entirely. If I remember correctly, it's the longest-living topic presently extant in this forum, if not on the entire board. And, surprise surprise, it actually fulfills an ongoing function to boot.

I hated to resort to artificial resuscitation to keep it going, but since Stalin's next purge is due to begin in a few days' time, I didn't want to risk to chance the odds of someone suddenly digging through old topics and having something to say on this subject in the intervening time.
Posts: 907 | Registered: Monday, July 15 2002 07:00
Shaper
Member # 5450
Profile Homepage #65
This thread predates it. It's dead though.

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I'll put a Spring in your step.
:ph34r:
Posts: 2396 | Registered: Saturday, January 29 2005 08:00
...b10010b...
Member # 869
Profile Homepage #66
"Oldest" and "longest-lived" are not synonymous. Age is measured by the date of the first post; lifespan is measured by the time elapsed between the first post and the most recent post.

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The Empire Always Loses: This Time For Sure!
Posts: 9973 | Registered: Saturday, March 30 2002 08:00
Mongolian Barbeque
Member # 1528
Profile #67
I wished I'd run across this a few days ago. It would've made the topic bump legitimate:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/4X

It's not an extensive list, but has quite a few there. Many I've never heard of before, presumably because most are for Windows.

Has anyone here played any of these?
Posts: 907 | Registered: Monday, July 15 2002 07:00
Law Bringer
Member # 2984
Profile Homepage #68
Fortunately, Tech Support is unlikely to get purged. While it remains unpruned, I will always be able to say: "I have been here x years, but my very first post STILL EXISTS!" :D

Also, this topic has just celebrated its third birthday. We're talking about a topic older than myself here... (and it is probably due to my feeling of noobishness that I feel drawn to use the most noobish emoticon available, :eek: ).

*shudder* I haven't used that thing for a year or more, I'd like to think.

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EncyclopaediaArchivesMembersRSS [Topic / Forum] • BlogPolarisNaNoWriMo
Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair.
I have a love of woodwind instruments.
Posts: 8752 | Registered: Wednesday, May 14 2003 07:00
Shaper
Member # 5450
Profile Homepage #69
I disagree. IMHO the order of noobish post icons, from most to least, is this:
:D
:eek:
:confused:
:mad:

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I'll put a Spring in your step.
:ph34r:
Posts: 2396 | Registered: Saturday, January 29 2005 08:00
Off With Their Heads
Member # 4045
Profile Homepage #70
I'd order it :mad: :confused: :D :eek:

And my first post shall persist for as long as BoA remains unpruned.

EDIT: Changed my mind about one.

[ Monday, January 09, 2006 16:34: Message edited by: Kelandon ]

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Arancaytar: Every time you ask people to compare TM and Kel, you endanger the poor, fluffy kittens.
Smoo: Get ready to face the walls!
Ephesos: In conclusion, yarr.

Kelandon's Pink and Pretty Page!!: the authorized location for all things by me
The Archive of all released BoE scenarios ever
Posts: 7968 | Registered: Saturday, February 28 2004 08:00
...b10010b...
Member # 869
Profile Homepage #71
:confused: :mad: :D :cool: :eek:

(And that may be the first time that a post consisting entirely of emoticons could meaningfully contribute to a topic.)

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The Empire Always Loses: This Time For Sure!
Posts: 9973 | Registered: Saturday, March 30 2002 08:00
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #72
I'm going to have to make an executive decision: just because a post is meaningful does not make it non-spam. In fact, this whole conversation is dangerously close to spam.

:D :D ;) :P jk jk!!! :D :D ;) :P

—Alorael, who just hurt his own soul. One should never double one's lifetime use of graemlins in a single post. Not even in jest.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
Mongolian Barbeque
Member # 1528
Profile #73
I found and downloaded the MS-DOS game Iron Seed (talked about in the Wiki article), yet I can't transfer the game to my old Compaq because each file is 1.3 MB and won't fit on a "1.44 MB" disk. Any suggestions on how to move the files from my iMac to the Windows machine? This isn't the first time I've encountered a problem like this, and compressing the files doesn't get them small enough — even if my old Compaq had a way of decompressing ZIPs...
Posts: 907 | Registered: Monday, July 15 2002 07:00
...b10010b...
Member # 869
Profile Homepage #74
Hmm. Try transferring the file to a DOS-formatted floppy instead of a Mac-formatted one?

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The Empire Always Loses: This Time For Sure!
Posts: 9973 | Registered: Saturday, March 30 2002 08:00

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