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Forgotten Planets: Beta Review
By: Blair Morris | Game Data | 11:28pm, August 23, 2005
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Its hard to find an identity as a space MMPOG these days. With so many, your lucky to find one that stands out. It only took a few minutes for Forgotten Planets' identity to start standing out. Not only an identity for itself, but one for its gamers as well.

After selecting your race -- Terran, Sutarian, Khey'tal -- and your focus -- Farming, Refining, Trading, Mining, Engineering, Terraforming, Espionage -- you start off with a "home world" in the Evil Eye Galaxy. You'll be thrilled to know that your home world is under protection (indefinitely) by U.G.A., the United Galactic Alliance. As soon you have your bearings, it's time to start building up your little M class planet -- planets range from A class to Y class. Managing your planet(s) is pretty simple and detailed. You have options you can choose to preform; such as, renaming your planet, setting taxes for the population of the planet, and constructing an outpost. After you have built an outpost, to house your population, buildings from farms and ore mines to launch pads and research centers become available. You'll be able to construct advanced buildings depending on what you have built, or researched.

Once you have your home world establishing and preformed some researches, you'll be ready to start building your empire in the Evil Eye Galaxy. Expanding your empire is simple as well. You'll need to purchase a colony ship with your credits and -- depending on the class of the planet(s) that you want to colonize -- a terraformer ship. Unlike your home world, you'll need to create defensive forces to protect your new colony. When satisfied with your new colony, as well as having the turns and resources, you'll want to move on to colonizing another planet.

When you have a budding, or full-fledged, empire, the game becomes your playground. From exploring the entire Evil Eye Galaxy, invading players' planets -- which you can capture and win spoils) -- selling resources and units on the "Player's Market", spying on other players, fulfilling job requests, going on quests, and joining or creating alliances, Forgotten Planets offers you numerous options. As well as having great selection of ships and units to purchase, spy missions, buildings, and researches your guaranteed to come back for more.

Now once you think that's the end of the game play portion, well, you're right, and your wrong. While in game, head to the game forums. There you'll see another side of Forgotten Planets. You'll find the usual general talk, help with questions, and bug reports sections, but you'll also find "in character" role playing done by the game creators them self. With the historical stories of the Evil Eye Galaxy, the uniting of the three races into the United Galactic Alliance, the threats of the Chumad -- a fourth race, NPC -- and many more game story lines and role playing.

Also in the forums, the regular gamers have the chance to mod Forgotten Planets through sharing their ideas with the developers -- who have a history of applying a good many ideas into the game -- as well as joining the quest team -- a team that comes up with quest story lines for the game. Frequently, the game developers also let the regular gamers vote on which direction they'd like the game to go, as well as, what prize(s) the winner of the round will get -- this will reportedly take place in they're next reset, and as of now, they're working on how to decide a winner of the round. We'll keep you updated on newly added features and news from Forgotten Planets when available.

On the graphical side of Forgotten Planets, for the few they have installed, varies. Some of the graphics fit the game nicely, others seem over the top, or a little out of place for the game's theme. However, in the forums, the graphics team has opened a thread where you can preview renderings of possible graphics for future updates. They also urge for anyone to give input or suggestions to their renderings, which keeps the gamers heavily involved in the game's progress.

Overall, there's no doubt Forgotten Planets is becoming a game standing out from the rest of the space MMPOGs out there. The developers hard work and creativity really show and makes Forgotten Planets one of the most enjoyable games to come out recently. I highly recommend you try Forgotten Planets today.

***Discuss this review and Forgotten Planets on the OMGN Forums***

8.2 Gameplay 888 8
Replayability 999 9
Interface 777 7
Community 888 8
Reviewer's Tilt 999 9
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