Independent games can be the salvation when old mainstream ones are too predictably perfectly made, and there’s no surprise. In the indie sector you can sometimes find treasures; but is it the case with Colony? The idea seems quite ordinary: mankind exploring space and terraforming planets. But what matters is how it’s made.
As you can see, the game requires quite a little CPU and GPU power, and that’s why. Though it’s a space adventure, space itself stays away from you. You interact with it through reports and analyses. So there’s little happening on the screen. Planets appear from space suddenly, like going to ram your ship.
In fact, it’s the graphical part that could have saved the game. But it fails to provide any emotional involvement. You just don’t see yourself as The Captain; and it would forgive fails with physics, chemistry and common sense if you did.
This game combines elements of base-building strategy and combinatorics, like Alchemy. In the beginning, it’s said that the Earth has run out of resources, so you’re out for them in the open space. Planets you may run into containing some elements you can collect and keep. You may decide to leave the planet intact, to gather resources there or (if it’s Earth type) colonize and terraform it.
But in order to find a new home for humanity, you’ll need a lot of materials and items. Some of them are available on planets, and some you get by combining what you’ve found. This alchemical part could have been the most interesting, as the elements are not from the periodic system; they include water, air, salt and even wood!
A PC game should be controlled with PC default hardware. At least, so the developer thinks. So the game only requires a mouse, and you click the options out of the menu.
Maybe that’s another point where the developer falls short of the expectations. Some players complain they can’t run into a single planet to start; others say they can’t get to combining elements. Maybe they just didn’t find the right element to click, but it’s the designer’s job to make them all available and noticeable.
Replay Value: 2
If you like it at first, you’ll probably spend a couple of hours playing it. But there’s too little to do, in fact. Find a planet, send probes, describe local aliens, select between collaboration and confrontation. Collect elements, make new ones. Not so exciting as it should have been for a humankind savior. So you’ll probably not replay it even if you like the idea.
This game has a lot of potentials, but it’s a common issue with games by a single developer. It lacks graphical vividness, though it offers quite a little action. Space adventures as we see them now are brighter, even if they are intellectual (like the author obviously meant it). It’s also getting dull after some playing, as the development of new elements and bases needs to be wrapped into a better story.
- Graphics 4
- Gameplay 4.5
- Controls 4
- Replay Value 2.5
Moderate system requirements
A step away from the mainstream
Inability to keep the promising idea