Gemini Wars Review
Publisher: Iceberg Interactive
Platforms: Microsoft Windows and OS X
Genre: Real-time strategy, Space
Big spaceships, large planets and a whole lot of action make up this space real-time strategy game called Gemini Wars from Camel101. Once you learn the basics, you’ll be planning attacks, moving fleets of huge spaceships and colonizing planets in no time.
Way into the future mankind has seen an explosive increase of space exploration, thanks to new power sources and better ship engines. There was hope that this increase in space exploration would unite the people as a whole, but the opposite was true and mankind is fighting amongst each other for control over space and its resources. Two factions called the USF and the alliance are at war with one another, with both sides blaming each other for mysterious losses on both sides, until a third faction suddenly arises.
The gameplay of Gemini Wars consists of your typical real-time strategy tropes. Most of the time you start with building shipyards and mining stations which deliver the funds and means to make more ships and make it possible to research for upgrades. The big map, which is filled with asteroid belts and planets, really makes it feel like you are in the middle of an epic space battle. The huge planets do not only serve as beautiful backdrops to the action, but they are also necessary seeing as you can only build stations on these planets. The asteroid belts serve a purpose too. These asteroid belts are where the mining stations are build and a such controlling these belts is a must if you want to keep building and upgrading your fleet.
You can select groups of unit for more focused attacks and missions as we’ve grown accustomed too in these types of games. You can zoom out with a tactical camera option to see where all the action is happening and where all the planets and asteroid belts are. Zooming in and out can also be done manually and you can go from the smallest details on a ship to the entire map in the blink of an eye, or one small step at a time using the scrolling wheel on the mouse pad.
While there is nothing wrong with the way Gemini Wars looks, it’s also nothing big to write home about. The ships and the stations look crisp, but rather plain. As a whole it’s serviceable, but it does help to make the game run better on slower computers. The backgrounds look great and they really drive home the fact that you are waging an all-out space battle. Due to the scale of the game it is near impossible to see the units when zoomed out, but this problem is covered by using symbols for the ship while zoomed out. When zoomed out the game doesn’t shine in the graphics department, but luckily this view is mostly used to find your units again and to quickly search for the next place to travel to or attack. The game looks at it best when you are zoomed in just close enough to see the spaceships duke it out with one another and you can see the bullet on the impact of the shields and then the hull as the shield drops.
When the spaceships fire at each other you get the exact kind of laser-y sound that you would expect when they come to blows with one another. The sound made during the hyperspace travels and most noticeably the sound they make when dropping their speed also adds to the feel that you are deep in some serious sci-fi action. The spoken cut scenes, which are a nice addition for an indie game, are clear and understandable, but it’s too bad that there is no lip-syncing. This makes it look like the character models are chewing on bubblegum instead of talking to you.
The best part of the audio is when you are out in space and you are ready to go head to head with the enemy. An orchestral epic starts and it really gets you pumped for the upcoming battle. When you turn the battle-camera on and that specific piece of music is playing while fleets of spaceships are shooting each other.
As a whole Gemini Wars is a fun real-time strategy game and a solid indie game with good gameplay. However it doesn’t add much to the genre that you haven’t seen before and as such the game is for the fans who can’t get enough of real-time strategy games. If you’re going with Gemini Wars however, you’ll find a fun game that can be rather hard at times and can really bust your strategy nut.