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Halcyon Sun (Windows)

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

Halcyon Sun is a dogfighting game set in space that mixes gameplay sequences with the narrative of a science fiction TV series. It was originally released for free and exclusively downloadable through the website Freeloader.com as an episodic series of twelve instalments released every two weeks, of which the first one was launched on 3rd November 2000. Next to the main game, players could also read additional reports and briefings on the official website to extend the game. Through poor distribution however, later parts missed the release schedule, causing players to use hacks to retrieve the episodes from the website. It faded quickly into obscurity and the entire package was re-released as a single game on a CD-ROM.

The game tells the story of Dru Avery, a squadron commander that leads a group of fighter in the last days of a space war set between a coalition of the Eridani race and the Carolan Commonwealth (the latter of which Avery is a member), and the Nolledah Revolutionary Republic. The story also contains more drama-like elements such as complex relationships. For instance, Avery's girlfriend is the Eridani liaison officer on the Carolan base ship and this leads to trouble as the relationship between the two factions in the coalition deteriorates due to rivalry. The story is furthered through lengthy, rendered cut-scenes including cliffhangers and credit sequences that can take up up to twenty minutes for a portion.

A single episode generally takes up 45 minutes of time. During the gameplay potions, players guide Avery and his squadron through space combat. The gameplay is arcade-like, with just a few buttons to fire, switch between guns and missiles, and release decoys or use an afterburner. Most missions require the player to destroy a specific target, attack a base, or escort another craft. Because the game has a strict storyline, sometimes certain ships of the squadron are invulnerable because the pilots are needed further in the game. Players cannot switch between ships or customize them. There are 24 combat missions in total and three hours of narrative scenes. If a mission is failed repeatedly, players are given the option to skip it.

The original game structure of the episodic series was left unaltered for this compilation package. That way, every three missions players need to watch the list of credits and then relaunch the game to continue playing.

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Alternate Titles

  • "Raumschiff Halcyon Sun" -- German title

User Reviews

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The Press Says

PC Player (Germany) Dec, 2000 76 out of 100 76
ComputerGames.ro Oct 10, 2002 73 out of 100 73

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Trivia

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Sciere (245704) added Halcyon Sun (Windows) on Jul 09, 2009