X3: Reunion

Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey was, depending on what kind of personality you have, utterly mind-blowing or mind-blowingly boring. A strange start to a review, granted, but we'd dare say that the category that you fall into will determine what you make of X3: Reunion. It's a game with immense depth and beauty, but you'll need the patience of a Jedi master, the spare time of the unemployed and the social life of a leper to get the most out of it.

In the game's story mode, you assume the role of a former space pirate who allegedly saved the day back in X2. Although there's a plot in here somewhere, X3 takes a bold step by removing all forms of help and direction to the player. What this means is that when you're sent on a mission specific to the core story, the structure of the game is so open-ended that weeks of gameplay could pass before you complete the task. Yes, you heard me right - weeks.

So what on earth are you doing in all of that time? Well, depending upon the type of player that you are, you could be undertaking side quests, earning a wage as a law enforcer, being a space pirate, trading goods from sector to sector, establishing a vast economic empire - you know, the usual. Either by flaw or design, X3's gameplay is more about existing within a game world; something that's radically different from just about every other game you've ever played.

While the wider majority of players will undoubtedly give up on it within the first 10 minutes, from a professional standpoint, X3's game design is positively intriguing. Forget about eye-candy interfaces, cute tutorials, or even straight-forward instructions - these concepts are simply not a part of this game. Instead, the game drops you straight into the deep-end and demands that you work it all out for yourself.

Considering the sheer degree of X3's complexity and brutally slow pace, this effectively puts the game well out of reach of all but the most hardcore of strategy gamers.

Alas, had more money and time been invested in X3, it could easily have scored a huge underground following. A lot of love and creativity has been put into this game, but it obviously didn't have the financial backing to see it through. While the core elements of the game are there and continue to astound, just about everything else is in tatters. As it stands, X3 is on the verge of greatness, but only a sensational amount of patching will ever see it get there.

Click here to view a screenshot.

Verdict: Jaw-dropping detail and grand galactic environments mix with generic sound effects and voice acting in a challenging game for space-sim purists. But perhaps it's inaccessible for the mass market.
Score: 4 out of 5
Publisher: QV Software
URL: www.egosoft.com
Price: $89.95

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

David Kvasnicka

PC World
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?