Bithead1000’s Star Control for Sega Genesis Review

“This is kind of like Intergalactic Street Fighter II”
– Bithead1000

I came across this review on YouTube by Bithead1000. From the video, I gather that he has played this game before the DOS version. This version tries to make use of the Sega Genesis hardware, despite fact that it was inferior to PC hardware at the time. Because of this, the gameplay was slower and the audio was a lower quality. He describes the music in this version as something reminiscent of 80s horror movies.

For those who don’t know, Accolade created the label, Ballistic, to publish a handful of unlicensed games for the Genesis. This included Star Control, which was branded as “the first 12 megabit game”. These unlicensed games resulted in a lawsuit between Sega and Accolade, which Accolade won.

Here, Bithead1000 plays through the melee mode, “the meat and potatoes of this game”. I like how he chooses ships at random and learns how to utilize each ship on the spot. It actually reminded me of how I learned the game when I first played it. By selecting a ship and pressing a button to load that ship’s “starship databank”. It’s nice to know what to call the ship and all of its components. Of course, the best to learn to play is to choose each ship, play around with it, and develop a strategy.

Another thing I like in this video is how he describes the ships. It’s not a simple fact that some ships have stronger weapons than others; ships can vary in speed, primary attack, secondary function which isn’t always a weapon, etc. It makes it easier for players to choose a favorite ship and even select a certain order of ships to play against an opponent’s order or ships.

Like many games, not only is it fun to play, it’s also fun to watch someone else play. There is something to learn from losing such as better evasion and what ship to choose next in the event of a imminent defeat.

Thanks Bithead1000 for making this video. It brings back memories of my first experience with Star Control, though it happened a very long time ago.

Have you ever played the Sega Genesis version?

Links
YouTube: Star Control Review by Bithead1000
Star Control Promotional Card
Star Control on Other Consoles
Star Control on Sega Genesis

6 Responses to “Bithead1000’s Star Control for Sega Genesis Review”

  1. With respect to the speed, here's a quote from Fred Ford: "We are still mad at Accolade for giving us zero time to enhance the Sega version. We pretty much ported it and as soon as it was up and running, they said "ship it." We could have made the space combat much more fluid."
  2. Interesting. Maybe Accolade rushed the other games as well. It makes me wonder how much time they had to develop the 3DO version of SC2 in comparison to the DOS version.
  3. Loved it! I found myself yelling at the screen. "Fire! Fire! Special! No! No! It's Alliance".

    I'd love it if you could let people know about the new Project 6014 Demo 0.2.1. I've created a new trailer on our website and on my youtube channel (http://www.youtube.com/user/dczanik) We should see a full release tomorrow (jan. 17th)

    We even made a starmap for fans just like the original Star Control 2 game.
  4. Hey Damon,

    Thanks for the tip. I'm actually writing about another Star Control-related trailer I've seen and I'll include the 6014 trailer on your YouTube channel.
  5. The 3DO version (published by Crystal Dynamics, not Accolade) had a different origin.
    From Fred Ford: "When we were developing the Horde, Crystal wanted us to do a Sega CD version (so that Sega would allow them to do Saturn development). We convinced two acquaintances to leave their nice corporate jobs and sub-contract that version in parallel with the PC and 3DO efforts. Unfortunately on the day these two were to start, negotiations with Sega broke down and Crystal refused to do the Sega CD version of the Horde. We felt so bad for them (having made them quit their secure jobs and then not having work for them) that Paul and I convinced Crystal to pay Accolade for the rights for Star Control II on the 3DO -- just so they wouldn't be scrambling for work again. As it turned out they weren't able to handle the port and Paul, Ken (my brother), and I were left to do that job along with finishing the Horde."

    If you're not familiar with these stories, you're probably not familiar with the "history" section on the old PNF. These pages do not appear to be present in the current version, but you can get to them using the Internet Archive from http://web.archive.org/web/20090326184350/http://starcontrol.classicgaming.gamespy.com/history/ .
  6. Cool. Thanks for the tip and thank goodness for archive.org.