Wednesday, September 04, 2013
RETROSPECTIVE: MASTER OF ORION 2
Master of Orion 2: Battle at Antares (MoO2:BaA) is a turn-based 4X game that managed to ship every sci-fi trope imaginable and somehow make them work. While some of the tropes associated with the gameplay actually originated with the title, most of the source material comes from elsewhere and is adapted only enough to dodge copyright claims. Star Wars, Star Trek, Battle Beyond the Stars, and a host of other sources give rise to a tech tree with everything from stellar converters to "doomstars" and every old-school alien concept you'd expect to run into. In many cases, this kitchen sink approach leads to a terrible abomination of a game. In MoO2's case, the result is delicious nostalgia that has aged remarkably well in the face of sequels, spiritual successors, and copycats using the same formula.