Star Flight review - Sega Megadrive
Stars don't usually have a habit of collapsing every five minutes, but that's exactly what's happening. The authorities of the planet Arth look on with slight bewilderment as the universe is slowly rid of countless civilisations. And then the Arth's sun begins to collapse, and Arth itself faces devastation because of deadly solar flares. Being a scientific genius, shooting ace, mining authority and best pilot in the cosmos, you're one of many who've been drafted in to find a solution to the problem, or failing that, find some new planets to colonise.
Unfortunately, the Arth authorities aren't making things easy for you. You have to earn a living in order to upgrade your ship to face the challenges ahead, and the only way to do that is to mine some of the planets and sell the goods to the economic community. Understandably, some civilisations don't particularly fancy the idea of a colossal ship landing on their planet and robbing them of all the valuable minerals...
Just to make sure that you're aware of how dire the situation is becoming, the Arth authorities have added a sensor to your ship that tells you how many days are remaining until Arth becomes a distant memory!
So it's down to you and your galaxy-class star ship to seek out strange new worlds and civilisations, and as the saying goes: "to boldly go where no man has gone before!".
What the Mean Machines staff thought
Starflight looked exceptionally dull before I took it home one Saturday to review. Needless to say, once I'd got into it, I spent the whole weekend playing the game (even though EA didn't bother putting a battery in the cart, so all my saved efforts were erased when the power went off - arrgghhh!). It's just like having your own Starship Enterprise. You can open all the hailing frequencies you want, fire off God knows how many photon torpedoes and even train up your crew! Every planet can be visited and mined, and there are many different alien cultures to interact with in order to get to the bottom of what's happening. The graphics are pretty dull, but it doesn't really matter when you have a game that I rate as better than as the classic Elite! The vast nature of the game means you'll be at it for months. Another Megadrive classic from Electronic Arts!
Normally, I wouldn't touch space trading games like this with a specially disinfected ten-foot long barge pole - they're always very slow, boring and tedious and never, ever have enough things to blow up. But Starflight isn't a normal space trading game. It's got loads in it, with alien races to meet, a zillion planets to explore and loads of hostiles to blow up. A common fault of games like this is that because they're so huge, there's a lot of aimless exploration and interplanetary time-wasting. But not in Starflight! There's constant action and variety and no hanging about - you're always wondering what to do or where to go next! Actually completing the game objective takes ages - there's hundreds of hours of play in this - and even then the game can go on! Starflight mightn't be blessed with the greatest graphics and sound ever seen, but then it comes to sheer playability, depth, variety and lasting appeal, I can't think of many Megadrive games better than this.
Have your say about this review
Dan - 25 Feb 2009, 16:39 GMT
This took like 5 minutes to finish if I remember right. Not a terrible game, but 94%? the lads were spannard.
Kevin - 10 Mar 2009, 12:35 GMT
Don't have fond memories of this game at all and it hasn't aged well. Took it back to the store I brought it from the very next day if I remember.
Alex Ross - 03 Dec 2009, 23:11 GMT
No way - I used to love this game! Still plays well in my opinion too, something a bit different for the MD.
Zombies Ate My Xbox - 21 Jan 2012, 00:36 GMT
I used to love this game. Even today the music still takes me back to when I spent hours playing it - bitter sweet memories now!
Even so, not sure I'd give it 94%, although it was certainly a change of pace for the Megadrive so deserves a good ranking on that alone.
dylan barry - 02 Aug 2012, 20:17 GMT
this is mass effect before mass effect, very impressive game ...but they could have given the guy better animation and made some less annoying music