PC Game Review: Space Hulk
|The original and best.|
Firstly, it isn't a remake of the classic PC game - the one where you're inching along pixelated corridors with genuine terror as Genestealers lurk just beyond the draw distance. It's a modern version of the board game, that feels a lot like an RPG as you move along tiles, spend actions, and roll (virtual) dice.
It's bundled up in a very nice looking package with great sound effects and visuals, as you take command of several Terminators and clear a deserted spaceship of horrid gribbly aliens.
I suspect this game won't do terribly well compared to their more well-known titles like Dawn of War, and Space Marine. A big factor here is the nostalgia of the original game, and its heavy RPG-slant will probably not appeal to the mass-audience. But as wargamers I suspect we've never really been interested in what mass audiences think.
First off - it has to be said, this game is very hard. I consider myself at least semi-proficient on these sorts of games and I struggled. Shooting a Genestealer (one action), only gives a kill on a 5+, meaning you can often spend three or four actions killing one gribbly. The Overwatch rule is well represented (and almost indispensable). Close combat is an absolute no-no: you can easily loose three or four Terminators in one turn to a single rogue Genestealer. Many's the time I've lost half my team like that and angrily quit the game.
However, frustrating though the game is at times, it does capture a little of the raised heartbeat that wargamers get when we pick up the dice for a crucial roll. Particularly with the hotseat and multiplayer versions, you get a little of the social aspect as well. And the graphics/sounds combine with the tough opponents to make an engaging and interesting experience, that will probably get your heart pacing.
If you're still interested, this video is excellent. No spotty teenager's or dubious Russian's rambling voice track - just the game. Well worth a look. It's just been launched, so via Steam it's currently £23. I suspect that if you wait that will be at least half price, probably better, within a month.
In short, well worth a wargamer taking a look. Frustrating, certainly, and perhaps repetitive too, but particularly if you have friends on it it's a very nice afternoon spent.
(Sorry to those expecting the WWI rules today - they're taking a little while to get into legible/understandable format so they've been pushed back a bit. Will have them done by the start of next week.)