285: The Greatest Game Never Played

Justin Emerson

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Dec 20, 2010
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The Greatest Game Never Played

The space-themed MMO Allegiance was ambitious, innovative, beautiful, well-designed, and utterly doomed to failure.

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Justin Emerson

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Dec 20, 2010
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Such an amazing idea for a game, released so far ahead of it's time. If such a thing were to release now, it would be devoured by the community. Something fresh and new, not done before. That's what the industry needs now, and it seems all the good ideas were released years ago, when nobody cared about them. I'll definitely give this a look.4

EDIT: Holy shit, this game doesn't fuck around. The picture they use on the wiki to describe the learning curve could not be any closer to the truth.

 

Lullabye

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Oct 23, 2008
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*sigh*
Well, at least I'm sound in the knowledge that I wasn't the only one completely missed this gem of a game. Hopefully in the coming years, they'll find it in their hearts to make this game again.
Now of to youtube to find some gameplay vids of this.
EDIT:
Okay, just gotta say, that looks amazing.
If they remade this game it would easily be a top seller. Maybe even more than the Ace combat series.
 

Warthur

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Sep 20, 2010
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The whole "real people control your units" thing makes this sound ripe for griefing to me.
 

Ruairi iliffe

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Sep 13, 2010
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Would so kill for a game like this Updated, Dont get me wrong i still break out my old Wing commander Floppys, but sometimes certain ideas should be touched upon again.

Gods i miss good old Space sim games....
 

hansari

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May 31, 2009
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YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME!!!

I came up with the idea for this game in my head around 2007...90% of my "revolutionary" idea was already done in 2000???

Are you kidding me?!??!
 

Loge

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Jan 22, 2009
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Nice article, never heard of the game when it was still under MS.

I played this one when it became free. By the time I did the community was small, tightly regulated but made regular events for newbies to learn the game.

Gameplay was basically: Scouting. Pinpointing the enemy location. Getting all your team geared up, usually headed by a mission critical craft like a bomber or a capital ship. Travelling, sometimes stealthed. Combat.

Halfway fun when it worked. Lots of ship and equipment possibilities. Too realistic flight physics for many (most?) people to comprehend, especially in a laggy enviroment.

Funny fact I remember: Our team (most in very cheap scouts with "reparing" guns) was told to constantly fly into the main bomber and heal it; this allowed the bomber to fly way faster than normal while being healed constantly. Very weird gameplay. (exploit?)
 

Reyalsfeihc

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Jun 12, 2010
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They really... REALLY need to remake this game... I'm going with Blizzard on this one, they've got the server capacity and bandwith magic down to host such a heavy game online.

.... DO IT!
 

bravobuster

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Jul 16, 2008
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Like Lullaby above, I too am now glad I am not the only person who hasn't heard of this game before. Definitely going to be spending winter break learning the ropes.
 

-Torchedini-

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Dec 28, 2009
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Looks like I'll like this one. But Why IN THE MIDDLE OF A F******** STEAMSALE
I got like a zillion of games to play to justify my spending. ;(

And graphics :p I know Graphics isnt gameplay but its high on my list anyway.
 

Falseprophet

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Jan 13, 2009
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I'm still curious why space-combat games took a nose-dive in the late 90s. I know the reason they were prevalent in the first place was because you could make a good one even with the technological limitations of the time. But why did the whole genre die when those limitations were surpassed? We still have platformers, driving games and beat-'em-ups that have embraced new technology. And in terms of the broader culture Star Trek and Star Wars are still viable franchises with large fanbases, and the new Battlestar Galactica was popular, critically acclaimed and featured space combat. Halo and Mass Effect are popular space opera franchises--you could have a whole spin-off game of space combat in those settings. Why isn't this being done anymore?
 

Casimir_Effect

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Aug 26, 2010
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I remember hearing from people that this game sounded fun on paper but never worked. This was back in the day though, and I never played it myself.

I did play Starlancer, and I'll love that game until the end of time. Except the part of it which crashed me back to desktop so much. That part can eat a sack of dicks.
 

Gildan Bladeborn

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Aug 11, 2009
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Ah, Allegiance - I knew all about that game back when it was actually on sale, and that the source code had subsequently been released and the title was now freely available, but I have never even been slightly interested in it even though I happen to freaking love space simulators.

Why not? Multiplayer-only. Juxtapose whatever you want, hype the amazing and innovating gameplay, release to rave reviews, it won't matter, those words are the kiss of death (of any interest I might have had in your game) - I don't play multiplayer-only games. Or rather, I don't play multiplayer-only games that are not online RPGs with no subscription fee.

Allegiance, at time of release, was essentially the worst of both worlds - an exclusively multiplayer title that they wanted me to pay a subscription fee to play. I've made it very clear over the years that my "I will not EVER under ANY circumstances play a game that has subscription fees" stance is utterly inviolate - there is no even remote possibility of my ever capitulating and compromising that point, so as interesting as the mechanics of Allegiance sounded (and they did sound pretty damn interesting, in principle anyways), it was never going to work.

Releasing the source code, modding the game, and establishing community run servers are all great moves that have extended the lifespan of what sounds like an excellent space sim, but none of that eliminates my complete lack of interest in a non-RPG online-only multiplayer space sim - that isn't what I'm looking for from that genre, and my single-player campaign needs are ably met by Freespace 2 (the greatest space sim ever released, bar none) and it's own source code project.
 

Ekim Takusan

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Nov 13, 2010
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I've never actually heard about this game until now, sad though it seems like something I'd really like, gonna see if I can get some free time to try it out soon. One question though does this game seem at all familiar to anyone else? The premise I mean? It seems an awful lot like the 'Training Simulation' that shows up in the third act in the story "Ender's Game" by Orsen Scott Card.
 

Wolfrug

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Feb 11, 2009
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:'( I remember playing this when I was a kid. It was amazing, really amazing. The games were long, and involved, and there was space both for lone wolves and teamplayers. Waiting until your commander researched the necessary gunships, and then jumping into one of the turrets and blasting off towards the enemy, escorted by a few fighter ships...magic. Pure magic. And sometimes the tech tree would even get far enough so that you could start building the -really- big ships. Ahh yes.

Nostalgia, nostalgia. Of course, paying for any of this would be silly, and the lack of SP was unfortunate, but as a concept AND execution, it worked perfectly for its time. Sometimes these things bomb though, which is just too damned bad. Oh, Allegiance, I hardly knew thee. Quick, someone get Kalypso to churn out an Allegiance 2!
 

vellocet

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Jun 17, 2008
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This game was amazing. I still remember the game fondly.

I always thought that the biggest problem was that it spent too long in beta.
 

Badwolf14

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Aug 6, 2010
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i do believe that after more people read this article the community base might increase a bit....for how long i have no idea but i know that i might try this after i catch up on other things
 

MorkFromOrk

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Sep 9, 2007
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Yah know I just wish there was a space sci-fi MMO that was more constructive than destructive. I mean...I enjoy space battles too, I do, but really Counter-Strike in space bores the hell out of me eventually. I want to build something, produce something...And no I don't mean just warships and laser guns +40 damage. I want adventure that isn't solely a device to collect exotic loot to p0wn your enemies with. I tried to play EVE Online but really all there is to do is fight meaningless wars or otherwise be a cog in a war economy. Not to mention the game seems to pride itself on being a griefer's paradise, home of the biggest collection of douchebag misanthropes you'd ever likely to find.