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News: Celebrating 30 years of Star Control 2 - The Ur-Quan Masters

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1  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / Starbase Café / Re: space strategy games recommendations on: January 08, 2011, 01:24:55 pm

Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri

This game is so unbelievably deep at times you'll find yourself drowning in it. One-More-Turn-Itis is extremely frequent. Infinite replayability, moreso if you spring for the expansion pack.

You may need to apply a few fixes and grab D3DWindower to get it running since it's about 11... 12 years old now. The fact that I haven't seen it mentioned before now shames you all if you consider yourself a strategy gamer Tongue

The only problem is that this game pretty much ruined 4X games for me. Nothing else compares to it. Civ 3 onwards felt like pale imitations. GalCiv could never hold my interest. Whenever I get my 4X itch, this is the game I wind up playing. For sixteen hours straight.

I'm now off to play on Transcend difficulty from scratch. See you in a few months.

2  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / Starbase Café / Olympic Mascot... on: May 20, 2010, 12:59:56 pm

It seems the Spathi are making a showing for Olympic Mascot.

Read the Article

3  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / UQM and Sci-Fi on: November 28, 2009, 06:38:50 pm
So lately I've been thinking about Star Control and other science fiction in general.

If you had to describe Star Control in terms of another science fiction show, how would you go about it?

For example, would you say SC is closer to Stargate or BSG? Just an example, mind.

Personally I think Star Control comes fairly close to Farscape... or rather that Farscape comes close to Star Control if we go by age Wink. In terms of depth and richness of Aliens Farscape and Star Control have a lot in common, both being quite unafraid of pushing the boundaries of the "Human with makeup" syndrome that tends to affect most science fiction and by presenting a variety of non-humanoid aliens. Imagine if the Henson company had been in charge of the puppets for Star Control thr- **dodges thrown fruit**

Both are quite quirky with their senses of humour at times both are unafraid to have a darker edge when it comes down to it. Neither Star Control nor Farscape were afraid of tragedy in their plots and both have compelling storylines that can tug at your heartstrings when you least expect it. Come on, how many of you could deliberately kill Fwiffo?

Thematically they also both fit quite well. They're both wild and uncharted universes where technology has evolved organically. There are many extinct species whose technologies are still being used, both had a form of precursor (Eidolons in Farscape), and both have their major conflicts, the Peacekeeper War being analogous to the First War in Star Control.

That being said the two also have their differences. While the UQM storyline focused on resource gathering, diplomatic ties (and blunders) and the overall efforts against the Ur-Quan, Farscape had more of a lawlessness about it... the primary Character of John Crichton only ever wanted to get home... and wound up staying away to protect Earth in the end. In Star Control, Earth is capable of defending itself (albeit poorly without allies) whilst the Earth in Farscape is set in modern times where we're not even considered worthy of alliance material and barely worth exterminating without a clear and present MacGuffin up our sleeves.

All in all, I'd say if we ever saw a Spathi make an appearance in a bar in the Farscape universe or a Scarran rear it's ugly head in the Star Control Universe, despite the law that states Crossover type stuff is bad (mmkay?) I'd definitely feel it wouldn't be too out of place.

Anyway, my 4 AM rambling - which rivals that of the Mycons famed abilities of rambling - aside, what do you guys reckon SC and UQM come close to in the wide world of Sci-fi?
4  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: Project 6014 – Ur-Quan Masters mod on: November 28, 2009, 05:40:03 pm
Assuming the image Here on wikipedia is representative, then there are plenty of stars between our happy little Sol and the edge of the galaxy as a whole. We're not right on the edge and neither are we basking in the middle.

And that's good too apparently, the sun is sitting in the galactic goldilocks zone between the areas where too far in would be too unstable for our happy little planet and too far out would render us metal poor.

The image is definitely worth saving by the way, it's a 5 Mb hi res image of our galaxy... worth noting down when thinking about the galaxy as a whole Wink
5  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: Project 6014 – Ur-Quan Masters mod on: November 28, 2009, 04:54:03 am

I love what I'm seeing and I'd love to help. I can write dialogue if you need it and do some voice acting too if that's what you require. Smiley
6  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: Injection 8: Utwig and Yehat shielding, Umgah retropropulsion on: March 26, 2007, 12:09:48 am
With regards to automation and shielding.

Extensive field tests have revealed that computers, no matter how powerful, simply dont have the cajones for field combat.

Space battles are by their very nature far too complex for the strictures of logic, the realm in which computers are forever chained. There is frankly too much information to be processed in too little time for any logical, non-sentient machine to handle.

Gut instincts, reflexes and sudden random bouts of insipiration put logical non-sentient machines to shame in the battlefield, leading to the preference of manual control of vital systems such as fire control and shielding.

Special exceptions to the rule abound however.

Human missiles were upgraded at the start of the war with a special bio-crystalline guidance system from the chenjesu. The creature, a semi-sentient thermovore was the perfect candidate to replace the outdated 20th century electronics. Capable of adaptivity and diabolical cunning, the creatures resistance to radiation, fecundity, crystalline nature (rendering it somewhat immune to electronic countermeasures), and ability to go for centuries lying in dormancy made it the quick, cheap, and effective way to upgrade humanities effective but inept weaponry at the start of the war.

Chmmr Zapsats are controlled by a similar creature that in it's natural environ employs a ray of light to scare predators away. With some creative engineering, the chmmr have bonded these creatures to compatible Mrrrnmhrrm technologies to create one of the most powerful automated defense platforms available to the alliance fleet.
7  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: Can someone tell me what happened in SC3? on: September 11, 2006, 05:59:13 pm
Cronos... for what you did to the SCnot3 CD... wasn't that a little... you know, insufficient? Please tell me you merely omitted mention of the priest?

The Priest? I'm sorry to say but what happened to him is illegal to witness in several countries. In fact I may have to go underground just for alluding to it.

You want to know what happened to the priest though? Think The Excorcist. Multiplied by about a hundred times. THATS what happened to the priest.

As an addendum, before I go in for plastic surgery and move to an undisclosed location and live underground (literally) for the next few years to evade the wrath of the legal system, the fireplace has refused to burn anything further since. Any fire that goes near it immediately extinguishes, even petrol wont light on fire. Electricity also happens to want to avoid the place as no electrical appliance wants to work in the vicinity. Furthermore, animals that haplessly wander too close either get the living hell scared out of them, or they mysteriously wind up dead somehow, their remains gracing said fireplace.

Quite an addendum but worth mentioning. Now if you'll excuse me, I do believe I hear the ASIO sirens approaching...
8  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: Can someone tell me what happened in SC3? on: September 11, 2006, 05:40:29 am
Races such as the Shofixti and the Yehat were barely even mentioned, if at all, in an effort to move the SC line away from FF and PR3's original vision.

In a slight addendum to whats already been said though...

The Sentience thresher (if I recall the name correctly) was what leeched sentience from the galaxy at large. Apparently the Eternal Ones couldnt be fluffed about efficiency though, which is where you come in and fix it to be far more efficient then it already is (apparently 99% of the sentience collected was wasted).

The Crux as an enemy were utterly pathetic. I honestly cannot imagine an empire arising out of such weak idiocy.

What they did to the Arilou was nothing short of monstrous. There was one particular animation where... the arilou... sucks his head in and out... it's difficult to convey the full horror. As a race, the Arilou died right then and there...

And lest we forget what the did to the Syreen. From exotic gypsy dancing sirens to androgynous arbritrarily sexless... blue... things... **shakes head**

I only inflicted that game once upon myself, just be certain that I wasnt being swayed by public opinion. I subsequently deleted the game, microwaved the CD, snapped it, and threw all the pieces into a fire while dancing around shouting incantations to ward off the evil spirits no doubt released and attracted by the destruction of that demonic hellspawn.

9  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / Starbase Café / Re: Recommended games on: September 04, 2006, 06:10:28 am
I havent played the DX series at all but I can say unequivocally that System Shock 2 is on par, quality wise, with SC2. It's an absolutely amazing game that will have you panicking, swearing and occassionally wetting your pance with fear at times.

But Dont Take My Word For it, read the review!
10  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: Could the Orz be a Nod to “The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy”? on: August 30, 2006, 03:12:14 am
A good connection, but heres a better one Tongue

Church of the SubGenius

Read the article first.

I draw the following connections.

The picture of J.R "Bob" Dobbs bears a striking resembelance to Proffessor Zorg.

Toys For Bob. Need I say more?


However, in a purposely contradictory fashion, they have also claimed that they are "SubGenius" because being a genius is not very fun.

A link to the Pkunk and being so good as to wrap back round to evil? Vague I'll admit.


The Church encourages humor, comedy, parody, and satire far more than most religious faiths. This belief is probably why the Church is seen on one level as an elaborate joke, an arguably postmodern mockery of organized religion, and a parody of controversial religious groups and cults, especially Scientology, Evangelicalism (evangelical, or fundamentalist, Protestantism, and "televangelism"). Almost nothing is considered off-limits to comedy in SubGenius circles, and the group's jokes often veer into the realm of bad taste. Church members frequently pull practical jokes on each other, even as they are using their comedic talents to other ends.

A gelatinous link to the Ilwrath and the Umgah o_O


An important SubGenius event occurs on July 5, 1998: X-Day. The Church had been predicting that on this day the world would be destroyed by invading alien armies known as the X-ists. Only the members of the Church of the SubGenius were expected to be saved from this SubGenius version of the apocalypse, by being carried away in the spaceships of the Sex-Goddesses. Although that day and each subsequent July 5 has passed without evidence of an alien invasion, the faithful membership still gather for the "Rupture" at a campground in western New York state to herald this SubGenius holiday. Reverend Ivan Stang has given many excuses for the failure of the Rupture to happen, such as claiming that "Bob" betrayed all SubGenii, that the scriptures were accidentally read upside down (hence the real year of the Rupture will be 8661), or that due to calendrical error or sabotage it is not yet really 1998. Some would argue that it did happen, albeit in a metaphysical and/or allegorical manner requiring greater flexion of paradigm to truly understand. Others have suggested that the X-ists did visit Earth as predicted, but that the planet we know as Earth was either secretly switched with Mars sometime during or shortly after World War II, or that the X-ists left with the persuasion that mankind will do the job as well, if not better.

Another gelatinous link to Homo Deus, the Syreen (Sex Goddesses anyone?) and the Kohr-Ah's Cleansing.
11  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / Starbase Café / Re: Pluto is no longer a planet! Poor Fwiffo! on: August 25, 2006, 05:23:56 pm
**puts foot down**

Pluto is a planet, now and forever...

At least to me  Embarrassed
12  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / Starbase Café / Re: Cool Comic Booklets. on: August 08, 2006, 07:30:00 am
It is a nice link isnt it RTyp? Perhaps you should click it and watch the entire thing.

In video, Ken Miller casually thrashes

Irreducable complexity
Intelligent Design as a valid scientific theory
The Motivations of the proponents of ID
The Origins of ID as a theory
The Future of Id as a theory

Now forgive me if I miss a few things here and there, I dont exactly have the bandwidth to watch the video a second time but he provides evidence that IC and ID is so much junk used to push a political agenda.

The bacterial flagellum, for instance, can have 40 of it's protiens removed outright and still have functional parts.

Blood clotting in humans is a 4 step process. Certain species, such as reptiles (I think) have a 3 step process, the blowfish has a 2 step process and their blood clots perfectly.

For Irreducable complexity to have any grounding whatsoever, not one part of any "Designed" system can be removed and still remain functional. The Bacterial flagellum is still functional with 40 of it's proteins removed. The Blood clotting process STILL works with 2 "Critical" steps removed outright.

In actual fact, you find that when you break apart this "Machinery" into their individualistic parts and portions, they carry out their own little functions on their own! It is in fact when they all group up do they perform a new or novel function.

This is all in the video I linked to. Kindly watch it this time instead of providing a 5 minute video that simply denies all chemical evolution with no real evidence to back it up whatsoever and simply passes off the internal chemical soup of the internal cell as mere machinery.

Finally, before I head off to partake of a lunch-based nourishing snack, consider that proponents of ID want to extend the definition of science to include Astrology.

I'll leave you with that little thought.
13  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / Starbase Café / Re: Cool Comic Booklets. on: August 06, 2006, 07:47:09 pm

^^ Watch it. Watch it all. Now. End of Argument Cheesy
14  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: ZoqFotPik question on: August 03, 2006, 04:38:26 am
Okay, I forgot about the Andros having five guys in the Captain's picture. My
mistake. In my defence, the Guardian ship doesn't appear in SC2...

What if those 5 guys were linked into a hive-like mind? Would they therefore count as One mind and thus captain or several? It would explain their uncanny ability to coordinate so well...
15  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: Star Control I--is there an ending for it? on: July 28, 2006, 03:16:59 am
Beginner's Luck

A lone Syreen must prevent Androsynth deployment.

A single Syreen patrolling a distant star cluster comes across an Androsynth development. The newly commissioned Syreen commander decides to engage the Androsynth, thereby ending the threat, and quite possibly winning a quick promotion. The Syreen commander must quickly defeat the Androsynth before he can build additional ships. The Androsynth Alpha+ Commander must choose between defending its colony world, and its Starbase. Time is on the Androsynths' side, and the enemy must come to him.

Outcome: Unknown


A war of production.

In an unexplored sector, the Hierarchy and Alliance detect each others presence from their newly constructed starbases.   Though alone and vulnerable, each starbase has a substantial initial budget with which to build a new star fleet.  Long range deep-radar scans of this region confirm the presence of Precursor artifacts and installations!

Outcome: Stalemate


The Hierarchy must curb rampant Shofixti breeding!

Perhaps the bravest species in the Alliance is the marsupial Shofixti.  Though young as a sentient species, and near feral in psychology, no other race in the Free Stars is so quick and efficient at exploring and exploiting an uncharted region of space. One such Shofixti-built zone has attracted the attention of the Hierarchy, in the form of an Ur-Quan Dreadnought. Its mission: a seek-and-destroy sortie to eliminate all Alliance colony worlds. The only way the Shofixti can emerge victorious is to destroy the Dreadnought before all their colony worlds are lost. 

Outcome: Shofixti Victory, since they're numbers were "Solid Throughout the war"

First Encounter

When spheres of influence meet, battle is inevitable.

In a far sector along the Coreward Frontier, an Alliance resource development team has encountered a small Hierarchy ravage/reclaim unit.  Both commanders face a similar decision: fortify their holdings then expand into enemy space, or make an immediate charge into the enemy's zone, hoping to disrupt his plans before they come to fruition.

Outcome: Uncertain

The Art of War

Match your strength against your enemy's weakness.

TO ALL COMMANDERS!  It has come to the attention of the leadership that certain ships are especially vulnerable to attacks by particular enemy vessels. In your new assignment, beware of these fatal match-ups as you seek to destroy the enemy's Starbase. Consider multi-species, wingbeing pairs. That is all . . .

Outcome: Hierarchy "Loses", considering the Ur-Quan sent the bulk of the Ilwrath fleet agains the Chenjesu and the Mrrnmhrm and the Mycon were sent against the Shofixti/Yehat, leaving the Vux/Androsynth/Umgah against the Humans/Syreen/Arilou...


The Ur-Quan Offensive begins!

An Armada of 6 Dreadnoughts approaches an established Alliance area of space. Can the Alliance withstand the onslaught in this thinly held star cluster? The Hierarchy seeks to conquer this region as a stepping stone to the core of the Free Stars, and the defeat of the entire Alliance fleet. The Alliance must annihilate the Ur-Quan menace.

Outcome: Hayes mentions that their offensive was "Barely held back" and that their counter attack hardly made a dent, "But we held the line, the coreward front remained intact". Alliance Victory.

Total War

Two full fleets face off in a battle to the death!

GENERAL ORDER 1216:  For maximum flexibility in forthcoming combat situations, it is hereby designated that war fleets be composed of a mixture of ships from each of the available races.  Due to shortages in raw materials, starbases are not available.  Concentrate on making good use of Colonies and Fortifications, as well as your knowledge of ship-vs-ship tactical advantages. That is all . . .

Outcome: Honestly could have gone either way.

Proving Ground

The Spathi fleet meets the Mmrnmhrm in deep space.

The newly conquered Spathi are commanded by their Ur-Quan overlords to capture the Mmrnmhrm Star Cluster mines as proof of their worth. The cowardly Spathi have no choice but to engage the tricky Mmrnmhrm in a pitched battle over a thinly populated region of space. The Spathi goal is to destroy all the Mmrnmhrm mining worlds, which supply a large portion of the Alliance income. The Mmrnmhrm must prevent this, at any cost.

Outcome: Uncertain, dependant of the time at which the spathi were ordered. If they were freshly conquered as the mission suggests, then this could be one of those orders that the Spathi simply skipped out on and earnt them one of their "Stern Warnings" from the 'Quan. If however it was after their second warning, after which there would only have been annihilaton, then it's a spathi victory.

Counter Attack

The Alliance strikes back!

For the moment the table is turned, and the Alliance has made a strong counter attack against newly established Hierarchy holdings. Multiple Alliance star fleets move through Hierarchy space towards a final rendevous for battle in Draco.  An Alliance commander arrives in enemy space with a starbase and a small task force.  Additional vessels must be commissioned immediately in order to mount an offensive. The Hierarchy sector-chief must attempt to hold out until the income from its mining worlds allow it to build enough forces to repel the attack.

Outcome: Alliance Victory. Hayes mentioned that he hadn't "...seen an Avenger blown away like that since the Battle in Draco!". Conjecture based on the tone used that the battle indeed went overwhelmingly well and was in all probability one of the last major victories for the alliance before the tables turned once again.
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