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In Easter 2015 I attended the Rezzed gaming show in London and one of the games I got a chance to have a quick play of a game called Fractured Space. I’ve always been a sucker for space games and have preferred piloting the biggest possible ships rather than fighters so Fractured Space was quick to catch my eye as I walked past. Fractured Space describes itself as “team-based space combat fought in gigantic capital ships. With the intensity of a shooter and the big-picture-thinking of a strategy game” and that’s fairly accurate.
The game has progressed slowly in the last year, became available on Steam’s Early access late last year and after picking up a number of players on a recent free weekend it seemed a good time to revisit it.
Start the game and it’s familiar MOBA territory – each team gets a base with resources and smaller bases along two corridors to the opponent’s teams base. Push forward and take over bases and get to and control the enemies base and win. The enemy is of course trying to do the same and the situation is further complicated by a buff that becomes available regularly if you take over a central area which grants the holding team significantly increased abilities.
When you first start playing there are a three ships available but you soon get a lot more options. More ship types, different weapon and propulsion types, different crews and general upgrades. These are paid for in a combination of in game credits which you earn and platinum that you buy and things unlocking at certain XP levels. You get a certain amount of platinum when you start but if you want to get to the biggest ships and highest levels you’re going to need to pay real money or grind a lot of xp.
The game is being made by the team who made Strike Suit Zero and is being developed in a surprisingly open manner – even down to having the team’s Trello boards available to see the games progress available online.
That all good but the biggest question is it fun? Simple answer – yes. The dev’s have managed to make the game feel massive and epicly open while still keeping your gameplay confined to corridors. The range of ships lets you pick and choose your tactics depends on how your team is made up. There’s a lot of tweaking of ships types still to be worked out and it’s rough around the edges in placed but the core game works and is addictively fun.
If you’re a fan of capital ship combat it should be in your steam list and if you play traditional MOBAs this might be a good chance of pace. The Forerunner pack that gives you access to the game and a good pack of ingame currency to start as well as some skins is £6.99 on Steam. Fractured Space isn’t done cooking yet but it’s got the look of a classic.