Videogame series (from 1980). Automated Simulations (AS). Designed by Jon Freeman.
The members of the Starquest series are early examples of the Computer Role Playing Game form, modelled after their designer's successful Dunjonquest fantasy sequence but set in the same Future History as Starfleet Orion (1978). In the first, Rescue at Rigel (1980 AS, AppleII, Atari8, TRS80, VIC20; 1983 DOS, PCBoot) designed by Jon Freeman, the player adopts the role of Sudden Smith, a biologically enhanced adventurer determined to rescue ten human captives from an asteroid base controlled by an insectoid alien race. The gameplay is turn-based and strongly combat-oriented, with events displayed in a two-dimensional overhead view. The sequel, Star Warrior (1980 AS, AppleII, Atari8, VIC20, TRS80) designed by Jon Freeman, somewhat resembles a turn-based tactical Computer Wargame, simulating a small military campaign fought with Powered Armour and nuclear weapons on the surface of a recently conquered human colony world. The player controls a member of the Furies, a group of "honourable mercenaries" who have agreed to assassinate the governor of the occupying forces so that the planet's inhabitants can rebel against their rulers. While technical limitations left little scope for including atmospheric background details within the actual software, the documentation for the Starquest games projects a strong ambience, one that is consciously evocative of the Space Opera adventure stories of the 1950s. [NT]
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