Solar 2, Voyage in the Cosmos



It seems Neil deGrasse Tyson was a GameDev before hosting Cosmos because this is the kind of game I imagine him sitting in his underwear, playing between shoots in his dressing room.  Solar 2 was so much fun I bought it on Steam and later on my Xbox 360. Yea, still have that thing.  But Solar 2 is a brand new take on a video games altogether as you play a well-organized collection of sometimes intelligent matter rather than a brainless lump of meat swinging a sword.

Saying that you play a solar system in this title would be like saying you play the strongest warrior in all the land in Skyrim; you eventually get there but there is quite a bit you have to do on the way.  When you start the game, a quote from Carl Sagan appears “if you want to make an apple pie from scratch, you’d have to restart the universe” followed by what is supposed to be the big bang.  When the screen fades in, you control a cold lump of dead rock floating in space.  You are an asteroid.  Your goal?  Fly through space like potato with a deathwish and crash into everything else.  Eventually you get enough mass and become a planet.  And your planet can cultivate life!  My little inhabitants built a massive world barrier to protect me and followed me around, blasting asteroids.  That was cute at first, but I found myself outpacing them so I could absorb more asteroids and become a star.  From there I started drawing planets into my orbit and cultivating a whole system of life!  Fuck yea!

And then some other asshole system with a fucking BINARY GODDAMN STAR bumbles along and is like, “O, were you using this?” and smashes my planets to smithereens.  As a system, you take up a good bit of space and larger systems might not be visible onscreen until its too late.  I was naming those planets, too!  Coming up with stories about its people and civilizations etc.  And then some asshole bumbles along and just blow them up by accident!  And to add insult to injury that system’s life, colored red at this point, started attacking the life on my only remaining planet.  I got a good distance, but the fuckers decimated the planet, blowing it up altogether.  I was lucky to escape with most of my protons intact.

O, hi. Nice to meet you. Fuck yourself and die!

O, hi. Nice to meet you. Fuck yourself and die!

So I said fuck it, I will become the biggest fucker out there.  I spent hours building a massive binary star system with nearly twenty planets and all kinds of other life etc.  I went and found what looked similar to the earlier system ( I doubt it was, space is fucking huge ) and ripped him apart.  And afterward I avenged my fallen inhabitants by chasing down the retreating solo star ( I raped it so hard its other star blew up ) and turned it into space dust.  I was so pleased with this that I fist pumped… and accidentally hit the ctrl key, absorbing all my celestial bodies and going supernova.  I was a black hole.  Fuck. Yes.  The most powerful and terrifying force in the galaxy, mother fucker!  On Cosmos they said that my mass is so great that my gravity warps time.  Bad. Ass.

Don’t want to be a goober and absorb the entire galaxy? Fine.  There’s missions.  In the tutorial, some face that looks like the above version of a god Giorgio Tsoukalos might worship pops up to guide you.  He tells you how to move, absorb matter, grow and that you can do his missions.  He’ll reward you at the end.  So you go do missions, like destroying rogue ships, luring them into enemies or playing “don’t die when I spawn missles on either side of you”.  Fucker.  And these are just the asteroid missions.  There are also missions to play as a planet and star.  I can only assume that there are missions for each major form as well, as I have not gotten to the end of this game.  But with how hard and long it is, I might as well run to the end of the fucking universe.

While playing the music is an ambient flow of particles through the void that soothes and hypnotizes you.  Then once you become a star with planets and such, you star to feel more and more drawn in as you watch them swing around in their orbits like a divine clockwork.  The visuals are nice, but nothing too spectacular.  Background is space punctuated by stars and nebulas.  Overall it is cool and fun, but once the charm of being a system wears off, the game can get a little boring.  And then you might fall asleep.

So what pisses me off about this game? God.  That guys is a fucking prick in this game! I mean who wants to play “don’t die when I spawn missiles on either side of you” with a fucking asteroid?  Seriously?!  And he is smiling widely as he says it.  At least that is what it looks like.  He could be shitting. Smug fucker.