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What makes a great space game?

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It entirely depends on what you want from the game, really. For me, exploration is a huge aspect, but I know people who are more keen on space fights. I also enjoy space fights if they are done well, don't get me wrong. There's also a difference between a space sim and a game whose setting is space.

Differences are also in space fights. Some people tend to enjoy dogfighting-like combat more, while others will enjoy the capital ship combat more. I like them both, and if the game can give you a distinct feeling between those, it does its job great.

The beautiful thing about space games is their diversity. Almost no game is the same as any other. It's a smaller genre compared to some others, but it has its masterpieces for sure.

A lot of space sim games can be a bit daunting to players who haven't gotten into them yet as they can be really complicated in terms of controls and mechanics, but I'd encourage them to play them nontheless.

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SpaceExplorer pretty much nails it.

I for one prefer space sims such as Elite: Dangerous or EVE Online or, to a lesser extent, Star Trek Online. I do enjoy exploration, but I also enjoy mostly-unrestricted player-versus-player combat, the likes of which are usually reserved for specific types of servers in MMO games. Something really fascinates me about traveling throughout the final frontier where anyone (especially players) could show up at any time, either as a friend or a foe, and if they turn out to be hostile for one reason or another, I can try to fight them off. In games like these where players can organize into groups ranging from tiny merchant guilds or warbands to prestigious mercenary units or even galactic superpowers, there's something to be said about being able to live among the stars, contributing to the galactic community, even if it's all confined to the internet. Have spaceship, will travel.

Of course, a game that isn't a space-sim, but is nevertheless set in space, doesn't hurt either. There's a reason I put so much time into Stellaris lately. Heh.

Edited by Executor Akamia
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