Title: Rebel Galaxy
Platforms: Xbox One, PC, PlayStation 4 (Reviewed on Xbox One)
Developer: Double Damage Games
Publisher: Double Damage Games
Release Date: Out Now
Price: $19.99/19.99 Euro
Tagline: A beautiful galaxy to explore, but difficult to survive in the beginning
Family Friendly: Click here to read more
Verdict: Wait for a Sale
As I played through Rebel Galaxy, the new title from Double Damage Games, it was easy to see that the team wanted to make a love letter to things like Firefly or Freelancer. From the first twang of a guitar down to the swashbuckling bravado of space combat, Rebel Galaxy screams old west meets space fantasy. It is about providing a wide open galaxy for you to explore and make your way how you want. It leans heavily on its influencers to great effect with its style and beauty, but falls short with its combat and controls.
Rebel Galaxy starts the way most epics do – a long lost relative leaving you a cryptic message that requires you to venture forth and save the galaxy and become the hero. Sure, it is nothing beyond cliché, but Rebel Galaxy never aspires to be more than the items it imitates. The plot only looks to give the player a basic framework to follow, instead giving one the opportunity to do whatever suits their fancy. One can become a wanted man destroying all in their path, or you can be a shrewd trader, buying and selling your way to success.
Rebel Galaxy is a wide open galaxy and in that galaxy, there can be combat waiting at every turn. Pirates are seemingly swarming around every asteroid field waiting to find a small ship to pillage and plunder for their wares. Sadly, you start off with pop guns for energy weapons and confetti cannons for missiles, leaving you rather impotent when taking on the scourge of the galaxy. In the beginning, combat can be frustrating, with so many encounters ending with you turning tail or worse, exploding in a fireball of failure. In time with upgrades, combat becomes more manageable, but it can be a climb, even with its somewhat forgiving damage systems.
Even more confusing was the idea of removing a plane of movement from your controls. Players only move across the X-axis, leaving out elevation and declination from your maneuvering. I could never find out if this was affecting combat, as enemy ships seemed to move on the Y-axis your weapons fire on a flat plane. This issue does not extend into general exploration around the galaxy, making finding destinations in space easier, as you never have to worry about reading a flat map in three dimensions.
Even with its quickly movement design, space is an element in Rebel Galaxy that can be enjoyed whole heartedly. Its galaxy is awash in a beautiful color palette of amber and red cascading across the dark black of space. Its galaxy is a splendid beauty that is fun to take in and enjoy, making exploration far more easy on the eyes and enticing when you decide to head off to the left for no real reason except to take in what Double Damage Games has created with its procedurally generated engine.
Taking in all of what Rebel Galaxy offers is a fun task when it comes to its exploration, and its ability to put you in a weird combination of the old west and space exploration is a testament to its design. It is something that is fun to just jump in and explore, looking to see the galaxy that has been created. But is frustrating combat and movement designs hold Rebel Galaxy back from being one of the best in this genre. It can be difficult to get a foothold early on, leaving many to leave the galaxy before really finding the depth and enjoyment held within.
- Space is beautiful to look at
- Procedurally generated to make for a unique experience to explore
- Allows one to make their own story and path to success
- Combat can be tricky at the start
- Weird design of no Y-axis movement
- Story is very generic
Rebel Galaxy is a game that most can play without fear of hearing foul language or extreme amounts of violence. Its violence is feels cleaner due to it being in space against mostly faceless foes, making it a little more distant. That said, its combat and controls can be a bit too complex for younger gamers that might get flummoxed by its difficulty. Maybe keep this for the young teen and up crowd to be safe.
This review was prepared using a code provided by Microsoft.