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Star Trek: Legacy - Review - Xbox 360

by Steven Williamson on 3 January 2007, 08:41

Tags: Xbox 360, Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT), Xbox 360, Shoot 'em up

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Controlling vessels

By far the most important part of Star Trek: Legacy should be the control of the vessels themselves and we were expecting far more than Bethesda have managed to achieve. The ships feel as if they’re packing a lot of weight and as a result are uncomfortable to manoeuvre. In addition to having to twist and turn your ship constantly in order to keep up and get within firing distance of enemy craft, you also need to move the camera around constantly in order to keep up with the enemies’ - far sharper - movements. The fact that many of the ships have a short firing range means that you have to get close to them, but it takes an age to turn your craft full-circle, so it often means you miss out on some of the action.

There’s no feeling of speed whilst controlling the various crafts and despite being able to warp across the universe to reach a destination urgently or to escape an attack, a feature that should have created an impact on us, left us thinking that the developers have concentrated far more on getting the look of the craft right rather than the function of them; even adding a simple rumble effect would have made warping a more immersing experience.

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Crashing into space debris, such as asteroids or even enemy ships has almost no effect or impact on your vessel. We ploughed nose first into an asteroid and it felt more like a fly had landed on our windscreen rather than the thundering impact that we’d have expected. It’s all well and good having a few fancy pyrotechnic effects (‘a few’ being the key phrase), but the most important mechanic of the game - the control of the ships - has been overlooked to such a degree that we were left frustrated during the course of many battles.

It’s not all bad news though! Thankfully, there’s a 2D overview map where you can plan tactics, plot courses and command the fleet without having to manoeuvre the clumsy vessels. We played through an entire mission using this map but, although we actually preferred it, it’s extremely restrictive with the options available. You can only plot courses and issue warp commands to your fleet, so you still need to use both types of gameplay in conjunction with each other for maximum effect; for example if you need to repair a ship or scan a planet, you’ll have to hop in the cock-pit of your craft.

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Based on your performance during a mission you receive command points that can be used to purchase or upgrade ships before the next mission. Although it’s a decent addition to the game (there are over 60 ships on offer), it would have been far more interesting if we could have actually viewed some in-depth stats on each vessel rather than browsing through half a dozen power bars that give you just a brief indication of each unit’s strength.