Piracy 2.0

Sean Huxter (2008)

Piracy 2.0 is a space adventure where pirates take over your ship while transporting their Captain, James Whitehall, to Penal Satellite One where he will stand trial. I found this game really enjoyable, with well thought out puzzles that fit right in with the story; but since I entered my own game in last year's competition, with pirates that take over your ship, it was right up my alley.

The game takes place entirely on U.W.S. Ceres, a name taken from the Starcross' registration, and it's a ship that sort of feels like a Klingon Bird-of-Prey. Once you escape the brig your free to roam around the ship, which is now filled with smoke from an electrical fire, running into a few pirates now and then that pop in and out of the haze.

The control of the ship is handled through computer terminals, with codes to unlock, that I feel were really well implemented. But there were a few visual bugs, spacing being off, and a strange response from putting the shiny battery back into the panel, which took a little away from the game. With a little more polish I feel that this would be a 10 out of 10.

I also had problems figuring out how to operate the console in Laser Control, and had to turn to the walkthrough. I think that this should've had the same type of menu interface like the rest of the ship's systems, instead of what feels like a guess-the-verb solution. If the file size needed to be bumped up to a z8 in order to do it, I think it's worth the effort. It would make the game play just about perfect.

At the end, when you make it back to Command, Admiral Copeland reviews the progress you've made throughout the game. Here your score can vary, along with the outcome, taking into account goals that were achieved and evidence that was gathered; with an ending that ranges from being drummed out of service to receiving another commission.

Overall I felt this is a great game that can be played in a few hours. It's heavily influenced by Infocom, but creates a flavor and a tone of its own, that just needs a little more polish to really shine. I gave it a 9 out of 10.