Firaxis games has given us the ability to conquer civilizations, the skies of WWI, alien infiltrators, and alien planets Now, with Sid Meier’s Starships, we can conquer space in the latest strategy game from the well known game designer. Sid Meier’s Starships launched on the iPad in sequence with other platforms, and delivers a deluxe strategic experience that gives you multiple areas to focus your attention. The heart of the game is expanding your space federation by helping out neighboring planets. Each helping sequence delivers turn based tactical space combat, and every new mission you complete gives greater goodwill from the native population of a given planet.
There’s a lot going on in Sid Meier’s Starships, so it takes a bit to get used to the various intricacies, and all of the capabilities at your disposal. Once you do though, it’s easy to see how the game was made with the iPad in mind, not just for touch, but the relatively bite sized missions, as compared to sitting in front of a computer for hours. What really stands out in Sid Meier’s Starships is that it seems to be an evolution of previous Sid Meier’s games that combines the best, and learns from the past. The federation expansion portion is a lot like Civilization Revolution, while the tactical turn based combat is very reminiscent of Ace Patrol. This combination gives a more hands-on approach to Civilization Revolution, and adds development choice to the Ace Patrol progression.
The best part of Sid Meier’s Starships is that there’s always something to do whether it’s upgrading your ships, building cities on federation planets, completing missions with new tactical combat, or interacting with other federation leaders. A single game can take hours, yet a single play session can take minutes as you choose how to explore, upgrade, and interact with other leaders. There are multiple ways to win a given game, and it’s great to see the map take shape as you expand your starship fleet to better handle the increasing threats of the unknown and enemies. Every single move delivers engaging gameplay, and everything is set-up to make relatively complex components as accessible as possible. The space combat is the definite highlight, but having multiple levels of strategy from the individual battles to the expansion of your federation is simply great to have on an iPad.
Sid Meier’s Starships ($14.99, iPad) delivers immersive multi-faceted strategy that makes for a must have iPad experience.