Space Interceptor: Project Freedom Review

Space Interceptor: Project Freedom is a space sim budget title. You can stop cringing now. After all, the world of budget titles has given us such gems as Serious Sam. Space Interceptor is not quite in the same league as Serious Sam, but itís definitely better than the usual horrors that inhabit the budget shelf. The question is whether or not youíll feel that you got your moneyís worth after playing through Space Interceptor, which is a question that youíll have to answer for yourself after I let you know what your Jackson gets you.

Space in Space Interceptor looks pretty good.

In Space Interceptor youíre an ace pilot who leads a squadron of fighters for Project Freedom Ė which as far as I can figure are the good guys, but Iím not sure of much beyond that. The future is full of evil corporations bent on shooting up Project Freedom. You know, if itís not those dang aliens causing trouble itís those pesky evil corporations stirring things up. Thereís sort of a loose, pseudo-plot tying this all together, but basically it all boils down to shoot the guys that are shooting at you and donít bother asking any questions.

As expected, your view of things is from the cockpit of your fighter. The cockpit displays are pretty much for show, and onscreen HUD indicators let you know such vitals as your speed, hull strength, and the relative direction of enemy and friendly ships. Control of your ship is pretty straightforward. The mouse is used to steer by moving an onscreen reticule and the mouse buttons fire your missiles and lasers. Speed is controlled by the mouse wheel, but canít throttle your ship completely down. Thereís no stopping in space. The control scheme takes a little getting used to as the ship will keep turning if the reticule is off-center as opposed to trying to point its nose in that direction. This will lead to a far amount of over-steering and pilot induced oscillation in the beginning, but youíll eventually figure out how to compensate for this.

Your ship is armed with lasers and homing missiles, but I found the lasers to be pretty ineffectual for the most part. Combat success in Space Interceptor is a matter of keeping the enemy close enough to your sight and watching for ever so tiny lock indicators to appear around the target. Once youíre locked on you can fire the missiles, although it seems that at longer ranges the missiles have a little trouble maintaining their lock. To compensate for this you can keep your ship aimed at the target after the missiles are away even though this makes the whole ďfire and forgetĒ feature of the homing missiles moot.