I love Lucasarts of old. I have fond memories of their best games, streaking across the stars in X-Wing and Tie Fighter or delving into the forgotten mysteries of Atlantis with everyone’s favorite archaeologist who isn’t out looking for his mommy. So when they made the big announcement that their most classic titles would arrive on Steam, I was a bit confused by the list.
I’m excited at their decision to support Steam by slowly making their classic games available on it without having to force players to give up food in order to pick them up on Ebay. Loom, especially notorious for its relatively high price among collectors for the boxed set (disk based and CD versions), is a true gem. But Battlefront II? Republic Commando? Thrillville? They’re decent games in their own right, sure, but nothing beats fighting for the Empire in an eggshell without shields while secretly working for the Emperor as a part of an elite club with cool tattoos.
Fan efforts such as ScummVM have made it much easier to relive the classics…at least with their adventure games…but I’m guessing that Lucasarts will be focusing on their own solution for obvious reasons which could explain why certain other titles filled in for other favorites that may have proven to be more…difficult to work with.
Looking ahead, later releases may eventually feature the sim fighters (we can hope) along with both Rebel Assaults, Full Throttle, and Jedi Knight, so there’s still plenty to look forward to. And once they’re out on Steam, that means that they’ll probably work without any hoop jumping, right?
A few of my favorites that I’m hoping to see:
Afterlife: This is an oddball simulation where you, as the Demiurge, run both Heaven and Hell as seen on an alien world so as to spare storefronts from picket signs. Think of it as SimCity, only you create either torture zones for hell-exiled souls or pleasure domes for the heaven sent along with everything else in between. Hard as hell to run both later on when you start running out of, ah, divine space to build everything in.
The Eidolon: An extremely old Lucasarts title notable for the detailed, steampunkish, diary/manual that came with it. The gameplay revolved around the Eidolon, a machine that took you to an alternate dimension of tunnels where you had to survive and kill the dragon waiting at the end of each one with colored fireballs.
Outlaws: Western FPS with a Clint Eastwood-ish lawman looking for justice. I thought it was pretty entertaining when it first came out, although some of the controls could have used a bit more polish. Still, one of the more memorable Wild West shooters to come out if only because it’s one of the few.
WW2 flight sims: Flight sims have been scarce, even with the arrival of next-gen arcade titles such as Ace Combat 6 and H.A.W.X., ever since their decline in the late nineties on PCs (along with space sims). Seeing Lucasarts classics such as Battlehawks 1942 or Secret Weapons of the Luftwaffe might be worth dusting off the ol’ flightstick.
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