Space... the final frontier. These are the voyages of the Starship Enterprise. Its 5-year mission: To seek out new life and new civilizations, to explore brave new worlds, to boldly go where no one has gone before. Based on the 1960s Star Trek TV Series, Captain Kirk and the USS Enterprise are representatives of the United Federation of Planets. Their role in space is that of explorers as well as a military presence. The Enterprise routinely encounters strange adventures and bizarre situations, each laid out as a separate "episode" which must be played in order. The first episode involves the USS Enterprise being called to a world to investigate strange "demons" have appeared from the mines and begun attacking the settlers.
Star Trek: 25th Anniversary is a combination of a point-and-click, side-scrolling adventure game and a first person starship simulator. This tie-in actually missed the 25th Anniversary of Star Trek's TV debut by half a year (nearly 3 years in the case of the Amiga version), but it uses the original series' characters and settings. Players directly control Captain Kirk, leader of the Starship Enterprise, and are able to give orders to other crewmembers. While the enterprise is on a peaceful mission, combat is possible. A new game begins on the bridge of the Enterprise, seen from a 3rd person view of Kirk, but a first person view out the viewscreen of the Enterprise. When on board the ship, Kirk can contact Chekov to assign a designation, raise shields or begin combat, contact Sulu to engage warp or adjust magnification, contact Spock to scan for data and search for keyword information, contact Uhura to deal with communications, and contact Scotty to change power allocation and repair damage and beam down to a planet. During combat, the player steers the Enterprise manually and is able to turn in 720 degrees of direction as well as increase or decrease speeds. Weaponry includes phaser banks which draw from the ship's energy and proton torpedoes which are in limited supply.
The adventuring bulk of the game comes in the form of many landing party missions, in which the player beams down to the surface of a planet and explores the situation. Kirk can move about on the screen, other crew members automatically follow him. From the menu, he chooses a body part to perform an action: eyes represent looking, mouth represents speaking, one hand represents using items (and crewmembers) while another is to pick up objects. Kirk carries an inventory of items collected which can be accessed and used at any time. In most missions Kirk will carry a communicator to contact the ship and a phaser weapon which can be set to "stun" or "kill", The point-and-click adventure has different solutions to problems, but the ideal goal of the federation is to solve things non-violently. Performance is rated accordingly as well as being based on how many extra discoveries and advances made and interaction with different beings, including aliens. The surroundings are all based on styles from the TV series and solutions to puzzles involve the skills of multiple crew members.
If there is one consistency among Star Trek fans it's that they will pay absurd amounts of money for any product even remotely related to their beloved science fiction series. These products include but are not limited to, books, stamps, neckties, decorative plates, a full set of autographed Jean Luc Picard tea-cups, mock Klingon batleths, figurines, bed covers, drapes, posters, stick-on Vulcan ear extensions, magazines, building kits for even the most obscure Star Trek ship, a welcome to the Enterprise doormat, playing cards and a whole host of completely unplayable computer games only the most dedicated fan would even attempt to play. Fortunately though for us, avid gamers, not all the Star Trek games are unplayable there are exceptions to that rule. Star Trek: 25th anniversary is just such an exception.
Star Trek: 25th anniversary is by no means the first Star Trek PC game. Quite a few attempts had been made to produce a decent Star Trek title, from simple trivia question games to full fledged adventure games that featured either cast from the original series (TOS) or the next generation (TNG). None had much if any success. That all changed however when in 1992 Interplay arrived on the scene.
In their first ever star trek game Interplay choose to the tried and tested route and put forth a solid and entertaining adventure game in which the player commands all the well known TOS characters, Spock, McCoy and of course the alien stomping babe magnet Captain James Tiberius Kirk as well the rest of the cast. The designers attempted to stay as close the television series as possible which results in the very believable (for a Star Trek setting) situations in which the crew find themselves. Interplay also uses some characters from the series themselves to provide flavour to the game.
The game itself is divided into chapters each representing a single mission or episode that the player needs to bring to a satisfactory conclusion. 25th anniversary lacks the one best way approach, which plagues so many adventure games, in that there are several ways you can complete your missions. You are then marked by an admiral for the way you choose to solve a particular puzzle. This heightens the replay ability of the game since you can attempt to get a better mark for a mission.
Graphically Star Trek: 25th anniversary is nothing breathtaking but it is more then adequate for a game from the early nineties. I sometimes had difficulty distinguishing between Mr Spock and Dr McCoy but that never led to mayor problems. Star Trek 25th anniversary does have a most peculiar control system that takes some getting used to. It uses what seems to be a normal point and click pictogram system which was then replacing the older PARSER interface but its execution of that point and click interface is so unusual that I more then once had to consciously go through a step by step process to get things done. This does not lead to complications in the game however since in an adventure game you are rarely pressed for time and you'll soon be familiar enough with the interface.
All in all Star Trek: 25th anniversary is a well executed and surprisingly entertaining game that depicts the Star Trek universe of the original series with accuracy. That fact however limits its appeal to fans of the series. Outsiders will have difficulty understanding the humour of game and will be annoyed by the incessant banter of the characters while they try to figure out why it is unusual that Klingons are robots or any other of the games puzzles that require a more then fair amount of insider knowledge to complete. For fans of Star Trek however this game is a God send. Anyone who has ever wanted to partake in an away mission needs look no further.
On an interesting side note, one year after the release of Star Trek: 25th anniversary, Interplay released an enhanced cd-rom version of this game. On it all the dialogue in the game is spoken by the actors themselves, very much increasing the involvement of the player in the action. If you ever run across a copy of this cd-rom I recommend you buy it. It will be well worth your money.
This game is sort of a pioneer for Star Trek games. From away team missions to ship-to-ship combat, the entire game captures the essence of the original Star Trek series. The game is not hard to play and is fairly self explanatory.
During game play, the player is able to come in contact with all of the major favorites from the original Star Trek series, including the Klingons, Romulans, Harry Mudd, and many others. The characters of each crew member is captured quite well with "I'm a doctor, not a target" from Doctor McCoy, "That is not logical" from Mr. Spock, and of course, "Ah!" from the random guy in the red shirt, who you have the option to kill or spare on each away team mission.
Anyone that downloads this game without prior knowledge will be at somewhat of a disadvantage for the first mission. Each mission begins with a briefing from a Starfleet admiral who will give you the "coordinates" of your destination. These coordinates are a number, which correspond with a star chart for the helm. The chart, which can more than likely be found somewhere online, is found in the game manual which came with the game disks. Clicking on the wrong star system will send the Enterprise off course into enemy territory, where it will have to do battle with one or more hostile ships. So I guess what I'm trying to say is: if you are going to download this game (and you really should if you love Star Trek), before you start to play, take a few minutes to look around for a website where some kind soul has supplied the star map. It will make game play SO much easier.
Also be advised that away team missions require some thought. The solution to a problem presented on a mission may not be as simple as it originally seems. Be patient and don't expect to get it right on the first try! Other than this, the game is fairly simple when compared to many of today's games. While it certainly makes the game more entertaining, knowledge of Star Trek is not needed to be able to successfully play this game. The only thing that will happen without knowledge of Star Trek will be a few unexpected moments.
Having said all of this, if you are still interested in playing, go download yourself a star chart and "boldly go" into playing this truly amazing game.
One of the best Star Trek adventures ever produced, 25th Anniversary has it all: excellent plot (in each of the game's "episodes"), good puzzles (including multiple solutions that may not yield optimal 100% score), and great graphics. You control Captain James T. Kirk and his crew as they explore the universe. The only downside in this game is the combat, which is frustrating for us non-action gamers but thankfully can be won at "easy" setting. Highly recommended.
Note: The download here is the floppy version. Interplay later released enhanced CD version of the game which features full voice acting from actual cast members.
Most Star Trek games were total failures. Fortunately, this is not one such game. Star Trek: 25th Anniversary is not just a good, but excellent game that wonderfully combines elements of an adventure, space simulation and action in one. It was made to celebrate 25 years since the first episode was shown on TV and it offers you a chance to see how it is to be Captain Kirk and how it feels to be in charge of one of the most famous starships ever made - the Enterprise!
The game is made of several episodes, each with its own goals, which create one full, great story. While on Enterprise, you will have full control over the ship (raising and lowering the shields, arming and firing weapons, repairs, navigation...) and this part feels like a real simulation. Once you teleport to the planet surface the adventure begins. This is when ST:25th A becomes a standard point-and-click adventure with action elements in case you get attacked.
The graphics in the game are far from spectacular but aren't too bad either. The interface is easy to use BUT it sure would help if the icons were captioned. You will need some time to find out and memorize what does each icon do and how to get to it.
This is definitely one game that you should play and complete. It is very fun, especially since the early game is quite easy - just enough to make you addicted! Recommended!
For all those Trekkies out there - this is YOUR game! I've always liked Star Trek (especially the original series) and I got VERY happy when I was able to get my hands on this one. A solid adventure with that good old Star Trek-Humor in it. You have to solve several missions, do some space-fighting, everything you could expect - it's there! Ever wanted to command Spock around? Or Bones, Scotty, Chekov...? Or one of those guys in red who got killed almost everytime they showed up in the old series? And there is a good chance that exactly THIS happens to them even under YOUR command!
You NEED the map - it's the starmap and without it you cannot navigate from mission to mission.
People who downloaded Star Trek: 25th Anniversary have also downloaded:
Star Trek: Judgment Rites, Star Trek: Starfleet Command 3, Star Trek V: The Final Frontier, Star Trek: First Contact, Star Trek: The Screensaver, Star Trek TNG: Klingon Honor Guard, Star Trek: The Rebel Universe, Visual Star Trek
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