Rebel Galaxy is a Space combat, exploration and trading simulator with easy accessible controls, a some what interesting story, a dynamic setting and one kick ass soundtrack. Developed by a 2 man team at Double Damage Games, Rebel Galaxy is actually more fun and visually impressive than it should be. The concept is similar to many other games of the same ilk like Freespace, Wing Commander: Privateer and the like. You get a ship, you fly around the Galaxy doing odd jobs and completing story missions to progress the game, buying bigger ships and better weapons on the way.
Rebel Galaxy handles those tropes in a slightly different way, instead of a 3D space combat game, your limited to a 2D plane but that doesn’t take away from the game at all, it makes it a lot more focused, and even though the enemy ships can move in a 3D space it doesn’t feel unfair or off balanced. Another way the game differs is instead of flying the smaller scale fighters and semi small transport style ships, is that you are flying full on Capital Ships. The game helps emphasize this by focusing on “broad siding” as your primary way of fighting, and this is where the 2D element helps out so you dont have to worry which orientation your in. For combat each ship can equip and certain amount of “broad side cannons” and “Turrets” along with some other specialized armament like “flak cannons” which help intercept enemy missiles and fighters.
The basic tactic is to try to pull up to the side of your target, preferably on their backside or front and turn your ship so that your side is facing them, then holding down the attack button you can “charge” the shot which just makes all your broad sides group a little better and let go and watch your cannon fire streak out into the enemy ship. The story is minimal to a point which makes it feel like your not really beholden to go with the story and can go about the galaxy doing whatever you want, trade, bounty hunt, be a bandit and all this is made easy thanks to a simple “faction point” system, doing certain missions or attacking certain people will cause you to gain reputation (Rep) with certain factions and become friends with them and open up new items and ship. I’m currently working for the militia because I want their “star destroyer” type frigate. the soundtrack is awesome, with a dirty country/rock vibe to it, helps with the “space truckers” theme and atmosphere, reminds me a lot of the “Firefly” soundtrack at times, check out the trailer for an example.
The visuals are decent for whats considered a low budget game, the ships all look different and interesting, each system and subsequent stars and space stations all look and feel unique. The special effects for combat are amazing, it feels any large scale movie fight scene, like the opening of Star Wars Episode 3 or even the intense battle scenes like in a high budget pirate movie given the 2d mechanics. Each star system and each nebula and each random asteroid field all look stunning. Quite impressive. Rebel Galaxy was released on Steam back in Oct for PC but was just recently released for PS4 and Xbox 1. I recommend giving it a try if you like casual space combat games.
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