"But suffice to say Space Pirates and Zombies isn't just a grand open-world space action RPG in the tradition of Star Control. It's also a rare expression of zombies that belongs alongside Dead Rising and Atom Zombie Smasher." - Gameshark.com
"A great indie plenty of depth, choices and fun: one of the best mix of genres in a long time." - Multiplayer.it
Space Pirates and Zombies takes place far enough in the future that Earth has become a toxic backwater planet, so potentially not that far in the future. The galaxy has been colonized by humans, and the only means to travel to new star systems is through highly restricted and well defended warp gates. It is well known that systems closer to the galactic core become richer and richer as well as more scientifically advanced. This has led to theories of a secret system with a cache of treasure or knowledge at the galactic core feeding this growth. As a pirate, you must assemble a fleet and discover what treasure awaits you there.
THE GALAXY: There are hundreds of stars to visit in SPAZ, and each game galaxy is uniquely generated.
STAR SYSTEMS: Within each star system there is an ecosystem of events that are influenced by your actions or lack of action. These events will expire over time and represent a War between the factions within the star system. Some events you can even stay out of the way and simply observe, such as fleet battles, and then collect the spoils. Yarr.
FACTIONS: Each system has two factions you can interact with, but they always dislike one another. The hub of activity in each system for each faction is their Starbase. There you can purchase technology, or trade captured crew for resources and other favours. If a faction is not friendly with you, they wont deal with you, but transferring a few workers to the Starbase can usually grease the wheels just enough. Approaching a hostile Starbase to make the trade is another matter entirely.
THE FLEET: As the game progresses, you increase the size of your mothership and thus the size of the fleet which it can maintain. Only your mothership is able to breach the warp gates between systems. The player can fly any of the ships in the fleet real time with AI pilots as wingmen. New ship designs are added to the fleet through combat. Each time a ship is destroyed, some of the knowledge to build that ship becomes available. If you can kill it, eventually you can fly it.
*SHIP DESIGN: *As the player explores star systems, they will come across new technologies to purchase. Upgrading your ships to use the latest tech is always desirable, but can be expensive. Technologies are usually not “better” than one another in SPAZ, instead they have different uses. A shotgun and a rifle both have a use, but neither is better than the other for all situations. As your technology pool increases, your combat options increase.
TECH REFINEMENT: As the player destroys ships and completes events, they gain technical knowledge. Once enough technical knowledge has been achieved, they gain a level up and can spend points to refine their technology. Technological refinement is required to use some of the higher end components on ships but also makes all components within that category better. There are far fewer points to spend in SPAZ than there are things to spend them on, so specializing will be key.
COMBAT: All of the above boils down to you flying one hell of a powerful customized ship and using it to blow up the enemy (whoever you choose the enemy to be.) Combat in SPAZ is all physics based. This means that if you can avoid a shot, it will not hit you. Ships have inertia and weight plays a major role in maneuverability. Use your thrusters and inertia to strafe as you have seen in Sci-Fi movies. Bullets will ricochet at high angles. Explosions have blast waves that impart impulses and apply damage to nearby ships.
ZOMBIES: Zombies are the fourth faction in SPAZ. As the game progresses, zombies become a more prominent force in the galaxy, altering the nature of the previous events and conflicts. In combat, zombie vessels and critters (dead people) behave a lot differently than human space ships. Zombies infect and eat, instead of destroy. They lay eggs and can quickly change from being a minor pest to a disaster.
Don't get me wrong - I think Space Pirates and Zombies is good game. I spent many hours playing it, but in my opinion this could be done a bit better. Which things? More diverse gameplay - there aren't much to do in quest or on next planets. More weapons or at least balanced weapons - once you will unlock specific weapon you won't need to change anything. It hurts gameplay alot. Sure, there are few types of weapons, but not all are effective. Also, this game is really long but not in a way you would like to spent so many hours in game. It's not like FTL but I know SPAZ didn't aimed to became same game, but there are really not much to fill these double digit hours to finish game. If you are fan of games in cosmic, you will have probably more fun that I did.
I had no idea what I am in for when I bought SPaZ. For some reason I connected it to Plants Vs Zombies and expected something in the same tone - and boy, I was wrong. The game is a space simulation where you mine, loot, help out different factions and get deeper and deeper in the galaxy. Even though the graphics may seem a bit simplistic at first glance it the game will quickly suck you in and you will be trapped in a great space mining-trading-shooting game with loads of upgrades, missions and places to discover. I would recommend it to people who enjoy titles like Privateer and X. Even though this game is not THAT complex it absolutely worths its price.
This is a strange beast of a game; with a combination of arcadey space combat, strategic elements and RPG-like progression it feels very unique - a definite plus - but the real question is 'do the different elements gel well?' Personally I think the game does an excellent job of blending the different aspects of the game, mostly because the UI is intuitive and makes controlling your ships easy and fast. Being able to create and outfit new ships at your will (assuming you have the in game funds) and then pick and choose which ship you wish to control, and decide how the AI pilot the others is very satisfying and makes for some fun customization. Finally, whilst the majority of this review has focused on how this game is a breath of fresh air, it also has to be said that the pacing of the game is very flexible. In a given sector you can undertake story quests, optional missions and ambient objectives (basically passive events that can grant bonus rewards) at your own will, with no limit on the time you can spend in one star-system. I would whole-heartedly recommend this game, since ultimately playing a unique game that mixes up the regular tropes is highly satisfying, that and being a space pirate is the bee's knees.
I got this game in a bundle and wasn't expecting much of it. This game however surprised me so much it is my most played indie-game in my steamlibrary and only surpassed by fallout en elder scrolls games in playtime. The game is a strategic space sim, but it doesn't go in knee deep. Therefore it's an easy acces game that provides hours and hours of gameplay with decent replay value. The goal of the game is to travel through a random generated universe and explore&upgrade your fleet. There are 3 major resources you want to find rez (like gold/cash/money) data (used to upgrade ship stats) and goons (used to trade, man your fleet, and bribe). It's a pretty simple game and that is this games biggest strenght. Simple yet awesome ;) Doesn't sound like much but it really got me hooked, even more so then FTL. Biggest plusses, briljantly simple, random generated universe, hours and hours of fun gameplay. Biggest drawback, no MP, and only 2d action. Hope they make a sequel.
Space pirates and Zombies is a very fun game, with many hours of gameplay available in it. Kudos to the small team of developers that put work into this, it just goes to show that in order to make a great game, you don't need hordes of game developpers, but a couple with commitment and ingenuity.
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