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Dark Orbit (Browser)

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MobyRank
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
2.8
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.

Description

After some dramatic changes in Earth climate, the future of Mankind lies in space. While exploring the universe, previously unknown raw materials have been discovered that enabled the human race to widely explore and populate the surrounding galaxies. Over time, three powerful companies emerged from the crowd of contenders that developed an active mining and trade industry with these new raw materials. But over-exploitation by the three has already led to bottlenecks in the supply of energy, so the immortal war for resources that Mankind was plagued by from its beginnings is raging harder than ever. To add insult to injury, hostile alien races have been discovered that are a constant threat to careless space pilots.

In Dark Orbit the player starts out as a fresh space cadet that is hired by one of the three big companies that fight for control of the universe. In the beginning the freshman owns nothing but a tiny nutshell of a space ship armed with some basic lasers and rockets that can be used to collect the first resources and kill the first aliens. Hunting down aliens will not only give experience points used to climb up the ranks, but they'll also leave a pile of debris that can be sacked. Selling these resources at the nearby space station will provide the necessary credits to upgrade one's ship or even buy a better one. Furthermore, the player can accept quests and challenges that will earn a bunch of experience points and a myriad of different other rewards when done. As the game progresses, the young space cadet can join a clan or found his/her own, can bid on auctions of other players or sell own loot at the highest price, can melt lesser materials to produce even better ones, and more. As a special gimmick, the players can find Jackpot money throughout their journeys that will be paid out each month to the winner of a special last-man-standing battle, paid out in real life.

As regards to actual gameplay, Dark Orbit is a massively multi-player space action game that is played in two different browser windows. The first window is used for administrative purposes. Here the ship can be upgraded, the statistics can be viewed, quests be accepted and so forth. The second window is used for the action itself. Looking top-down at a 2D universe the player can move his space ship to explore the surroundings, chat with other players, collect resources, and battle aliens or enemy ships. Fighting is done by choosing a target and selecting the appropriate weaponry to use, the actual battle will be done automatically, no arcade style here. The universe is divided into sectors which are connected by star gates for easy passing. But beware, the deeper into the game world the player delves, the better and more resources he will find, but the stronger aliens and increasing numbers of enemy players he will face.

Screenshots

Dark Orbit Browser Hangar: cool ships for sale - of course way too expensive for a noob.
Dark Orbit Browser The online advisor has some first help for me.
Dark Orbit Browser Look at all this glimmering space trash.
Dark Orbit Browser Collecting my first resources, notice the chat interface at the lower left.

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The Press Says

Eurogamer.net (UK) Dec 06, 2010 8 out of 10 80
Softonic May 26, 2006 3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars 60
GameZebo Feb 07, 2012 1.5 Stars1.5 Stars1.5 Stars1.5 Stars1.5 Stars 30

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MZ per X (2940) added Dark Orbit (Browser) on Oct 01, 2009