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Dark Horizon (Windows)

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59
MobyRank
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
2.7
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.
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Description

Dark Horizon is a futuristic dogfight flight simulation set in space. The game takes place in the Enosta universe, where the element The Mirk has started to form black anomalies that cause entire star systems to be devoured. Three races - Sia'Nuss, Guardians and Bioses - collaborate on The Light Core project, attempting to block the expansion of The Mirk. The humans oppose the project of Sia'Nuss, while there are also De'Khete - creatures who attempt to convert everyone into The Mirk. The game is presented as a look at the past, as it is revealed the project has succeeded in the future. Going back in time, the player is Corwin, a third-degree member of the Guardians, and a warrior of the Vattar Ama'Dan fortress.

The game's main storyline is divided in six parts with 22 levels in total. Next to cut-scenes, most of the story is furthered in-game through conversations with fellow Guardians. Corwin will usually operate in squadrons, and is able to offer fellow fighters instructions such as attack, cover, spread out, or missile volley. One of the most important aspects is the extensive ship customization system. From the hangar, Corwin can select the hull, armor and reactor, as well as one or two gun and missile systems, shields and additional devices. The player needs to take the type of mission into account, and adapt the craft into a fighter, a bomber, or the assault fighter as a mix of both. The craft is limited in both mass and energy, so customizations need to be considered carefully. Some weapons have unlimited ammo, while others are limited but offer much stronger firepower.

Even more customization is available through the repair shop. Based on the elements technoalloys, conductors, regenerators, nanomodules and electronics gathered from destroyed ships, the player is able to order parts, weapons or revisions. These are unique and can be defined in detail, based on the type of part, the class and several modifications that affect armor, shields, damage, defence, shield regeneration, energy and self-repair. This makes it possible to construct a ship with unique parts, completely fit to the player's playing style. From the main cabin it is possible to read up about the races, developments and the history so far.

In-game players can choose from a general third-person perspective or a more precise cockpit view. Objectives appear on the left side of the screen and are often adjusted because of unexpected events during missions. Flying in squadron or solo, the player's ship needs to track and engage enemies, navigate asteroid fields and much more. There are various tracking and targeting systems, with detailed statistics about shields, armor and durability, a radar, the status of allies and enemies, and weapons and ammo.

An important aspect of the gameplay comes through the two combat modes: Shadow and Corter. By lowering the craft's temperature, Corwin's ship can enter the Shadow mode where it is almost entirely invisible to enemies. It gives a brief pause needed to recover shields when the enemy cannot confirm your presence visually, but thrust and the firing rate is extensively decreased. Heating up the ship will make it enter the Corter mode, offering a much faster firing rate, but lowering shield regeneration. To successfully complete missions, the temperature needs to be adjusted constantly. Shields can easily regenerate, but when they are gone, the craft is completely open to enemy fire and this permanently affects the armor and durability.

Screenshots

Dark Horizon Windows Practising in the tutorial mission using the cockpit view.
Dark Horizon Windows The hangar where you can customize your ship.
Dark Horizon Windows Start of the first mission, I'm in contact with the rest of my squad.
Dark Horizon Windows The briefing gives us the details of the mission ahead of us

Alternate Titles

  • "Хроники Тарр: Стражи Пограничья" -- Russian spelling
  • "Tarr Chronicles: Sign of Pride" -- English working title
  • "Khroniki Таrr: Strazhi Pogranichya" -- Russian title

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The Press Says

Digital Chumps Sep 22, 2008 8 out of 10 80
Game Captain Nov 18, 2008 75 out of 100 75
411mania.com Sep 26, 2008 7 out of 10 70
GamersHell.com Nov, 2008 6.8 out of 10 68
gameZine (UK) Sep 30, 2008 6 out of 10 60
GameStar (Germany) Jan, 2009 56 out of 100 56
NowGamer Sep, 2008 5.3 out of 10 53
Cheat Code Central Oct, 2008 2.6 out of 5 52
GamingExcellence Dec 09, 2008 5 out of 10 50
GameSpot Nov 10, 2008 4.5 out of 10 45

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Sciere (251158) added Dark Horizon (Windows) on Mar 22, 2009