The first Star Trek game to feature full-color graphics and digitized portraits of the U.S.S. Enterprise's key officers, Star Trek: The Rebel Universe is a point-and-click adventure set in a quarantined region of space, where Klingons are believed to be turning Federation starships against Starfleet Command. You'll control Captain James T. Kirk and six of his closest advisors on board the Enterprise and on away missions to exotic worlds in multiple solar systems. The unusual presentation, referred by the publisher as a "multivision system," features a large display window surrounded by seven smaller panels of each crew member.
Clicking on Kirk, Spock, McCoy, Sulu, Scotty, Chekov, or Uhura's portrait lets you access his or her specialties while flying the Enterprise. To solve the mystery behind the rogue Federation vessels, you'll need to chart a course through space, beam down to a planet's surface, and follow potential leads or acquire specific equipment. On a planet's surface, you'll need to rely on each crew member's advice and expertise to overcome various puzzles. While in space, you'll periodically have to engage Romulans and Klingons in ship-to-ship battles, which involves firing phasers and torpedoes after locking onto your target. You have five in-game years to successfully complete your mission before the adventure ends.
Starfleet Command is attempting to contain a rapidly growing Federation mutiny in the Sagittarius Arm. Every Federation starship set to discover the nature of the problem has also mutinied and joined the Klingons. To avoid the mutiny spreading to the entire Federation, Starfleet plans to wrap the entire area in a Klein Sphere, sealing it off forever.
In a last attempt to find out what is happening, Starfleet sends in the Enterprise before the Sphere is set up. Its five year mission is to attempt to discover what is causing the defections, and hopefully stop them. If you fail in your mission, the Sphere will be made permanent, if you succeed the Sphere will be dropped, avoiding a potential war with the Romulans.
The game is basically a graphical adventure with some real-time combat and piloting. The game progresses by flying to planets, beaming down on them, and retrieving any items you find. There are several possible solutions to the game, with clues found along the way.
You are onboard the legendary N.C.C.1701 USS Enterprise. The ship has just reached the so called quarantine zone and now your five year mission will begin.
This part of space known as the quarantine zone was closed off by the Federation, because the loyal ships turned rebel once entering the system. This is because the dilithium delta 6 can submit people to mind control and that's exactly what the Klingons were up to. If you don't succeed in your mission this part of the universe will be forever closed to the rest of the space, not to mention that the Klingons could apply this method of mind control to other sectors.
There are several ways of finishing this game (you can find out about them by accessing certain data banks) The easiest two ways are either to find and destroy the mining equipment, or to destroy the brainwashing wave emitter. There are other ways also.
The game is a good mouse controlled adventure game where you need to explore a huge number of planets and finish the mission. There are Federation planets that can help you on the way.
The game is fully mouse controlled and it's a basic point and click (not to mention among the first real point'n'click) game, meaning you don't need to type in a single letter (except when giving a name to the save game file). The sounds and graphics are not really good, that's why the overall score for this game isn't this high. There were much better looking games out there in the year 1988, but the plot of the game is the one that really makes this Star Trek game enjoyable.
You start on the bridge of the Enterprise and see the bridge crew. Every crew member has some set assignments, so if you wish to navigate you must use Sulu, and if you wish to fight you need Checkov. Mr. Spock will tell you data about planet systems and individual planets within a system (once you're there) and he'll also tell you about the shape the Enterprise (or an enemy ship) is in. Scotty (the recently deceased James Doohan) will keep you informed about the condition of the warp and impulse drive, Uhura will relay any messages to you, Bones will tell you how well the crew members are doing (they can get hurt, but it's almost impossible for them to die). Kirk as the captain will have the option to save or load the game, you'll be able to se the ship's log and if orbiting a life support planet you'll get the chance to select the away team to beam down.
It's these away missions that I liked the most. Every crew member has a different way of doing things, so when you come to an obstacle every member will suggest a different solution. Some will let you pass, some will block the passage and you'll never be able to pass. Some obstacles will require a certain piece of equipment (which you'll have to find on another world). You can also pick up other goodies that may improve the performance of the Enterprise.
Besides the life supporting planets there are other planets as well. Just remember where the Federation planets are, because you'll need the mines, weapon supplies, etc. to keep the Enterprise at the top performance.
All in all this is a very good game that would really need a graphic do-over. The graphics and the sound are really the only two weak things with this otherwise great game.
People who downloaded Star Trek: The Rebel Universe have also downloaded:
Star Trek: The Promethean Prophecy, Star Trek: Captain's Chair, Star Trek: First Contact, Star Trek: Borg, Star Trek: The Next Generation - A Final Unity, Star Trek: 25th Anniversary, Star Trek: Judgment Rites, Star Trek: Klingon
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