Universal Combat Reviews (Windows)

Critic Score
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
User Score
5 point score based on user ratings.

User Reviews

There are no reviews for this game.

Our Users Say

Category Description User Score
AI How smart (or dumb) you perceive the game's artificial intelligence to be 2.3
Gameplay How well the game mechanics work (player controls, game action, interface, etc.) 2.2
Graphics The quality of the art, or the quality/speed of the drawing routines 2.2
Personal Slant How much you personally like the game, regardless of other attributes 2.7
Sound / Music The quality of the sound effects and/or music composition 2.7
Overall User Score (12 votes) 2.4

Critic Reviews

MobyRanks are listed below. You can read here for more information about MobyRank.
GameZone (Feb 16, 2004)
Overall, I have to say that Derek and his team at 3000 AD are definitely going in the right direction here with the newest release to the series, but it still has some work that could help it out. The bottom line is that while the controls are easier and there is more action, casual gamers will probably still get turned off by the depth of the game and the controls that are there since there are quite a few of them, and action gamers that are looking for a souped up space version of BF1942 or something may be disappointed at the slower sim based style of the game overall (since this is what the game is intended to be). Still, Battlecruiser fans should be impressed with the expansive galaxy, vehicles, and the fact that enough of the things that they enjoy from the series were left in to be yet another enjoyable version in the series that they love to play.
PC Gamer (2004)
Universal Combat isn’t really about tactical FPS combat, flight-simming, or massively multiplayer action. As with earlier Battlecruiser games, its appeal lies in the breadth of its canvas and in its free-form gameplay. I can’t think of another game that will let you navigate through a living, evolving universe with complete hands-on control of every aspect of your Command Craft and crew. Don’t expect to have your hand held, however. Universal Combat ships with a wickedly steep learning curve, and only those folks prepared to physically search it out will find the massive and decidedly unconventional gaming experience that’s hidden within its universe.
Game Watcher (May 28, 2004)
Overall, this is a very difficult game to learn, let alone master. The level of detail certainly makes it worthwhile to the hard core, but I felt it was too complex for its own good. If you enjoy a good fight, and are willing to put in the time, then pick up Universal Combat. It isn't bad, its just a lot to handle.
GamersHell.com (Feb 28, 2004)
Universal Combat is a budget game, but it had an intense amount of hype surrounding it and I honestly expected it to be a lot better than it was. Perhaps this is due to Derek Smart’s fabled inability to compromise despite the fact he’s continued to release games of this type and continued to get similar reviews. Or perhaps it was due to the immense undertaking the developers took on with such a concept, simply working themselves over the breaking point with the inclusion of land, sea, air, and space combat (which Derek said was a requirement given by Dreamcatcher along with the rebranding into “Universal Combat” title from the “Battlecruiser” series). But whatever the case, Universal Combat remains really the only game of it’s kind, and sadly, if no other developer takes this genera seriously, Universal Combat is the best we’ve to hope for.
GameSpot (Feb 13, 2004)
At its heart, Universal Combat is yet another somewhat noble failure. Much like its predecessors, it tries too hard to do too much and winds up falling short in almost every area. There remains great promise in the core concept--and in many aspects of the design--but even the most dedicated followers of Derek Smart and 3000AD must be wondering (by now) if this promise is ever going to be fulfilled.
IGN (Mar 02, 2004)
This game is like skyscraper built and maintained by a handful of people—an impressive architectural achievement, given the small amount of resources and staff, but it's still a skyscraper. Meaning, there are details that one person or a small group can't polish or improve. There are things that will be overlooked, and things that will get dusty and stay dusty. And you'll have to cut a few corners in the bells and whistles department. Universal Combat does offer some interesting moments, especially when dogfighting in the clouds—tumbling corkscrews, death-defying loops, missiles flying, warning alarms going off and all that. But “content” is not successfully determined by sheer size and interface depth, but by an environment that feels alive and, in the open-ended design, doing its own thing with its own routines. I would rather have explored a single, dynamic system or three, rather than piles of basically static ones that felt like they hadn't existed the moment before I arrived.
Gamesmania.de (Mar 09, 2004)
Was hatte ich Hoffnungen, dass unter Dreamcatchers Federführung aus dem überkomplexen Battlecruiser ein zugängliches Spiel wird, doch der Action-Fokus im Sinne der Namensänderung war wohl nicht mehr als ein Marketing-Gag. Dreamcatcher hat dies erkannt und den Verkaufspreis in den USA auf 20 Dollar gesenkt - nun liegen die Kanadier deswegen mit Smart im Rechtsstreit. Doch man kann von dem exzentrischen Wolf der Branche halten was man will, seine Spiele werden nicht besser: Für Harcore-Spieler und Simulationspuristen mit ungewöhnlicher Ausdauer und Toleranz für Fehler mag Universal Combat eine Herausforderung sein, der typische Weltraum-Fan, der X2 oder Freelancer spielt, wird sich jedoch von dem Titel abwenden. Was nützt all die Spieltiefe und Handlungsfreiheit, wenn in den Weiten des Alls der Spielspaß verloren geht?
With its daunting interface, an over-the- top fixation on the most trivial details of starship control, and a general disregard for any kind of satisfying, flashy production values, Universal Combat goes beyond simply targeting the average starship-combat enthusiast. This is a game designed for people whose routine space fantasies at some point turned the corner into actual fetishism. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. If you’ve enjoyed previous installments of the series, this is a bargain-priced (selling for $19.95) incremental advancement on everything you already like. For anyone who doesn’t share Dr. Smart’s very specific obsessions, however, Universal Combat is an exhausting, impenetrable bore.
Game Chronicles (Mar 09, 2004)
Only devout Smartites need apply. Again, as in the previous games, Smart has failed to create a game capable of appealing to the gaming public at large. This almost seems intentional...as a visit to 3000AD's forums demonstrated. Some of the 3000AD staff were openly hostile to anyone presenting criticism. They even went so far as to brush potential bugs off as "rubbish".
ActionTrip (Feb 13, 2004)
In short, this game suffers from a bunch of agonizing drawbacks. A dreary atmosphere, blatantly outdated visuals, AI bugs, and many other issues inherited from the game's predecessor, all contribute to an overall disappointing experience. Also, if you happen to be a fan of Battlecruiser Millennium, chances are you'll be bored with facing similar gameplay and practically the same content (same universe map, same ships, etc.).
Shooterplanet (Jan 10, 2005)
UC wollte viel, hat aber vieles nur oberflächlich erreicht und nicht eine Seite des Spiels ist wirklichausgefeilt. Es gibt zu viele Probleme und die viel zu komplizierte Steuerung verdirbt auch den letzten Spielspaß. Was bleibt ist ein Spiel für hartgesottene Profizocker, die mit dem Schwierigkeitsgrad und der Steuerung zurechtkommen und denen eine Durchschnittsoptik genügt. Vielleicht gelingt es den Entwicklern ja mit den zwei Add-On’s die Probleme zu beheben, um doch noch ein gutes Spiel zu programmieren.
Game Captain (Apr 27, 2004)
Hochkomplexe Weltraumsimulation, bei der theoretisch nichts unmöglich ist. Praktisch scheitert das Spiel an einer grottenschlechten Präsentation, nicht vorhandener Atmosphäre und mieserabler Steuerung. Fans der Battlecruiser Reihe, die schon durch die Vorgänger abgehärtet sind dürfen auch bei Universal Combat a.k.a. Battlecriuser Generations wieder Gefallen finden. Allen anderen sei von diesem Spiel abgeraten, es sei denn sie wollen es wagen für absolute Spielfreiheit, ohne eingrenzende Story, auf jeglichen Komfort zu verzichten, den ein modernes Spiel minimal bieten müsste.
Withingames (Apr 24, 2004)
Die Jungs von 3000 A.D. befinden sich in meinen Augen endlich auf dem richtigen Weg: Ich bin mittlerweile sogar etwas zuversichtlich, dass es irgendwann gelingen könnte, das fordernde und komplexe Spiel auch für ein größeres Publikum attraktiv zu machen. An der technischen Umsetzung muss zwar dringendst nochmals gefeilt werden, aber das sollte durchaus möglich sein. Mir hat „Universal Combat“ auf alle Fälle mit Abstand am Besten unter all den Battlecruiser-Spielen gefallen, die ich bislang ausprobiert habe und kenne.
Jeuxvideo.com (Mar 08, 2004)
Un potentiel inexploité, des ambitions démesurées qui donnent un titre trop complexe, trop lourd et sans intérêt à moins d'être accro au genre. Et encore, il sera bon de préciser pour les quelques joueurs intéressés que le background du jeu est très moyen (en terme d'esthétique notamment) et qu'on nous lâche dans des missions obscures où l'on ne sait pas trop quel rôle on doit jouer ce qui est tout de même bien malheureux vous en conviendrez.
PC Zone (Apr 18, 2004)
There's no aspect of the game that isn't abysmally implemented. I would dearly, dearly love to sit here and go on for five or six pages listing the faults, but it really isn't worth the effort. Just avoid UC like you would a diseased badger or rancid tramp.
CanardPC (Feb 25, 2004)
Nid à bugs doté d'une ergonomie abominable, techniquement pauvre et particulièrement moche, Universal Combat est une curiosité dégoulinante d'options qui laissera froid la majorité d'entre nous. Malgré un prix honorable outre-Atlantique, les combats de ce néoshareware resteront universellement lourdingues.
Joystick (French) (Apr, 2004)
Quand je regrette Yu-Gi-Oh ! pendant le test d'un jeu, c'est qu'il se passe quelque chose de grave. UC est un produit rare. Il me fait découvrir de nouvelles sensations. Comme par exemple cette irrésistible envie de mettre un 0 en intérêt, pour bien faire comprendre qu'il est impossible de s'amuser avec ce truc.