Sci-fi September: 5 games you may have missed

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Posted September 16, 2014 by Bryan Boshart in Video Games

This month, the writers here at We the Nerdy  have taken to writing all about science fiction. I’m here to bring you 5 great science fiction game titles that you may not have played.

 

1) Colony Wars (PSX) pictured above

Colony Wars was a fantastic space flight sim/shooter that was released by Psygnosis in 1997. Part of what made it great was the branching paths of the campaign. Depending on whether you succeeded or failed certain missions, you could end up with different endings. The game had a ton of content, with over seventy missions that were non-linear to occupy your time. At the time of its launch, Colony Wars had mind-blowing graphics, at the time stuff like being temporarily blinded by looking at the sun was incredible. The game play was great and really took advantage of the analog controls introduced around that time. The game did well enough to garner two sequels, though they didn’t get as much buzz.

 

2) Ghostbusters: The Video Game (Xbox 360 and PS3)

Let’s face it, the vast majority of movie tie-in titles are bad at best. Take into consideration that Ghostbusters came out over twenty years after the original movie launched and you have a recipe for disaster, right? WRONG!! Ghostbusters was surprisingly good. The game takes place between the two movies and gives you control of a silent new recruit only known as “rookie”. This is a great move as it lets you get the sense of being a Ghostbuster without getting in the way of the witty banter that made the movies classic. Ghostbusters plays like a normal third person shooter, and you get four different firing methods for your proton pack. I particularly loved the detail of the game. As an example, once you scan a ghost with your PKE meter, not only do you discern their weakness, but you also get a cool little backstory that explains the life of that ghost. Even if you’re normally wary of movie games, Ghostbusters is one you should add to your collection.

stay-puff

3) System Shock 2 (PC)

Okay, it’s a bit of a stretch to say a lot of people missed this game, as it’s one of the most famous PC games of the nineties, but a lot of our readers are of the age where they would never have tried this gem. Launching in 1999, and made by Irrational Games (The same guys behind Bioshock), System Shock 2 is one of the most atmospheric games EVER made. The basic plot is that after stopping a crazed AI in the first title, you investigate a craft filed with both members of a mega corporation and members of the UNN who’ve begun to distrust one another. System Shock 2 gives you many ways to combat each scenario, and as a shooter/rpg hybrid gives you a few different classes to try with vastly different styles. If you have Steam and haven’t played this title, then you absolutely have to pick this game up.

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4) Hybrid Heaven (N64)

This Konami Nintendo 64 experiment is something I even missed until a few years later when I was lucky enough to pick it out of a bargain bin. Hybrid Heaven is an Action/RPG hybrid (see what I did there?) that is one of the most creative titles I’ve ever played. The open exploration area is a bit lacking, and your only weapon is a wimpy little diffuser pistol. You’ll disarm traps and solve puzzles, but the combat is where the game shines. You move around in full 3D, but when you press “A” a menu appears and you can throw a multitude of punches, kicks, and throws that all have different strengths and weaknesses. The majority of the combat is about balancing your stamina and power. If you go close to your opponent in an attempt to throw them, you have to keep in mind they have the ability to throw you as well. The strategic element of this game is what made it stand out more than most games on the Nintendo 64. Another genius feature of the game is that each time you attack with a limb, its attack goes up; however, each time you attack a limb of an opponent it’s defense goes up. This feature prevents you from getting one move you can just spam over and over until you win, and helps to make the game more fun.

hybrid heaven

5) Cave Story (PC, 3DS)

Cave Story is a wonderful Metroidvania style game. You play as a robot stranded on a floating island filled with all manner of creatures. Multiple weapons are available and can be upgraded by killing enemies and picking up the shards they drop. Your upgrades take you quickly from pipsqueak to power, as one missile turns to several and enemies fall before you. Even when you’re running around in your god-like state with maxed out attack, you still have to be careful as one bad jump, or a stray bullet can knock you back down to earth quicker than terminal velocity. It’s almost shocking in a game with such a cutesy style for any character to die, but several do, and it’s surprisingly heart breaking. Fantastically done boss battles are liberally sprinkled throughout the game, and most are fairly challenging, but beatable. While the game isn’t particularly long, it’s nearly infinitely replayable, and you can even alter some things in the story.

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There you have it, five science fiction games you may not have played. These have all been games I’ve enjoyed over the years, and I hope you’ll give them a chance too.


About the Author

Bryan Boshart

Hey, I'm Bryan. I write video game reviews here at We The Nerdy. In my spare time I mostly play fighting games, but play almost anything.

 
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