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OreSome (Preview)

January 14, 2013 Leave a comment Go to comments

“OreSome” is all about, you guessed it, ore.  The player will be given a ship and the freedom to wander around the cosmos, trying to improve their overall might and footprint by collecting ore, researching tech, and building various objects.  Before we get started, I’d like to thank Jamie Smith from WorldSmith for providing me with a free review copy.  It should be noted that the game is still in the early Alpha stage (Alpha v0.16), meaning that the game is not finished yet.  Any bugs or problems I mention shouldn’t be held against it, seeing as how the game is still a work in progress.

OreSome

OreSome (PC)

The main menu lets you start a new game, continue an existing one, play around in the shipyard, and adjust game options.  The shipyard acts like a sandbox of sorts, allowing you to choose between a list of objects and place them on the grid.  After you are finished, you can save the design and then start a new game using that design via the load menu.  The options menu lets you change the screen resolution, toggle between windowed and fullscreen mode, adjust sound and graphic options, and rebind keys.  I’m quite pleased with the menu and the range of options it offers even though the game still in an Alpha state.

OreSome

Options Menu

The game starts you off small, as most games of this type generally do.  You’ll be provided with a small ship (called a builder bot) and will have access to various screens via your interface.  The interface is interactive in that you can minimize the screens you don’t need, which I find to be a nice touch.  The lower left hand corner of the interface grants the player access to a mini-map while the right side of the screen informs the player as to how much ore they’ve collected and allows them to build various bots and frames.

OreSome

Info panels getting in the way? Minimize them by clicking on their icon.

In the current Alpha build, there are beacons / canisters that the player can find to help introduce them to the game’s mechanics.  I’m glad that these tutorials are here, as I honestly had no idea what to expect from the game upon starting it up.  The game doesn’t hold your hand in these tutorials though, rather, they provide you with a short wall of text that you’ll need to pay attention to.  I’m looking forward to seeing more help in this area personally, as I often had no idea what it was I was supposed to do next.  The tutorials do describe an item’s basic functions, but are cryptic in how to actually go about using them.  For example, I deduced that the boomer bot was somehow used for battle via the tutorial message, but it wasn’t until I ventured too close to one as it approached an enemy entity that I realized it was a mine of sorts.  I promptly found myself back at the main menu with singed eyebrows.

OreSome

You can view tutorial messages and missions by hitting “tab”.

To sum up the gameplay, you’ll be collecting ore and destroying alien bioforms in order to grow your fleet.  Destroying alien bioforms grants the player research points, which are then used to unlock different bots and frames for purchase.  You can access the research screen by pressing the “R” key.  In conjunction with acquiring research points of the appropriate bioform color, you’ll have to spend ore to actually buy the research upgrade to make particular technologies available.  The amount of ore you need to buy a new technology increases gradually, forcing the player to think about his or her choices.

OreSome

You’ll need to destroy the appropriate bioforms to unlock the ability to buy particular techs.

There are too many bots and other buildable objects to go into each of them, but suffice it to say that there are many and they each have their own unique function.  The player can drag bots (assuming they’ve unlocked the tech and have the ore available) onto the grid, click on them, and assume control as they would with their builder bot.  Frames, on the other hand, act as structures that you can combine like Legos to form different creations.  Some frames absorb solar power while others act like a radar and detect enemy and allied ships.

OreSome

You can mess around with the different bots and frames in the shipyard, accessible via the main menu.

It wouldn’t be fair to critique the game as it isn’t finished yet, but I will say that I am pleased with the frequency of updates.  The developer has clearly been busy adding more features and fixing bugs, which is always a good sign.  I haven’t been able to get very far in the game, mainly due to being unable to find bioforms to unlock more research options and lack of direction in progression.  I’m hoping that more features are added to give the player a better understanding of how all of the bots and frames in the game work together.  In terms of graphics, the scenery is beautiful and I particularly like the way the stars ripple with color.  All in all, I am looking forward to seeing the game in its finished state.  If you’re interested in sandbox games set in space and enjoy collecting resources to build various things, then I’d keep an eye on “OreSome” if I were you.

You can learn more about and purchase “OreSome” by visiting the following websites:

http://oresomegame.wordpress.com/

http://www.desura.com/games/oresome

You can view a gameplay video of the Alpha build here:

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