Big summer blockbuster? Check. License to make video game? Check. Pretty decent development team behind it? Hold up. To coincide with the release of Star Trek: Into Darkness, Digital Extremes, co developers of the original Unreal series and more recently, BioShock 2 and The Darkness 2, have released Star Trek: The Video Game. But does this original story based in JJ Abrams update to the Trekkie universe, featuring the voices and likeness of the films characters, deliver? No. Unfortunately this is yet another movie based game, rushed to be released before the film, and falls a fair few miles shy of the mark.
In short, Star Trek is a cooperative third person action game, in which you take control of Captain Kirk or Dr Spock. After answering a distress call from the Vulcan’s, our heroes discover that Spock’s pointy eared compatriots have created a monster time ripping device (the Helios), that if in the wrong hands, would allow for enemy ships to sneak up anywhere unannounced. And these wrong hands belong to the Gorn, a race of anthropomorphic dinosaurs with lasers.
The Enterprise acts as you main hub throughout the story, filling in the plot in between your various trips to planet surfaces and space stations. Each character from the movie is represented well (gotta love Scotty!), and the narrative is wonderful, not quite as good as Into Darkness, but great nonetheless. Regrettably everything else is poor.
The first major complaint is the coop itself. An essential part of the gameplay, which really doesn’t work to well. Especially if you’re playing with an AI partner. Waiting for minutes for them to help open doors, hack computers or walk across a roaring fire and killing themselves in the process, failing your current mission. In this day and age, piss poor AI is unacceptable, particularly in a game that really isn’t that complicated. Coupled with abysmally boring gunplay, an awful cover system and the sheer rigidity of the game, this really is the vanilla ice cream of action games, plain, simple and downright meh.
Visually it’s fine. It looks just like the films. The voice acting is great and the original story flows well and makes sense, even if it is a little cliché. Its strongest point would have to be the score. Pretty much ripped straight from the film it fits the atmosphere of the game and gives a bit more of that authentic Star Trek experience.
All in all, this is another hastily put together movie tie in that feels like it would have been at home on the Xbox/PS2. Unfortunately for Digital Extremes this is one game to forget about rather quickly. Sloppy gameplay, moronic AI and no replay value whatsoever, Start Trek lacks in most departments. Its saving grace is how it sounds and looks, but this doesn’t make up for what is fundamentally a crap game.
Game rented and played to completion by author