Star Trek - PC

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Star Trek (PC)
Requires: Mouse, Keyboard
Also for: PS3, Xbox 360
Viewed: 3D Third-person, over the shoulder Genre:
Strategy: Combat
Media: DVD Arcade origin:No
Developer: Digital Extremes Soft. Co.: Namco Bandai Partners
Publishers: Namco Bandai Partners (GB)
Released: 26 Apr 2013 (GB)
Ratings: PEGI 12+


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Licensed games have a (largely) well-earned reputation for being a little lousy. Paramount, Namco Bandai and developer Digital Extremes are all keen to avoid falling into that trap with Star Trek, which drops right between JJ Abrams two films in the re-imagined franchise.

Paramount wanted everyone who was involved with the 2009 film to get on board with the video game. Such access to movie talent - costumiers, creature designers, storyboard staff, composers and environment artists - could only be unlocked by Paramount’s direct contribution to the game’s development.

The game itself is an action-shooter heavily built around co-op play, thus offering the opportunity to further explore the relationship between Captain and Science Officer. Unlike some co-op action games, where your friend amounts to nothing but a second gun, in Star Trek there will be sections of play where one will need to assist the other to progress.

To satisfy fans of the Shatner-tastic Original Series, the game takes various cues from the 1960s show. The entire plot, for example, is loosely based around the episode Arena, in which Captain Kirk engages in slow and awkward combat with a solitary alien known as the Gorn. It's all been sped up and brought up to date, though, with an entire race of the Gorn on display. This is still Abrams’ Star Trek - heavy on the action, explosions and shoot-outs; light on the post-modern social deconstruction.

The dialogue emphasises that inimitable camaraderie between Kirk and Spock, in a game that is equal parts exploration and shooting action.

A lot of care and attention has gone into the environments, the dialogue and the scripting to make sure that you feel like you’re on board the USS Enterprise. As you hop from the Bridge to Engineering, you get to explore areas of the ship that you recognise from the film - while later levels allow you venture through areas of the ship that you’ve not seen before.

All-in-all, Star Trek looks like a worthy addition to the collection of any fan of the latest generation of Trek.