I originally started playing Star Wars Galaxies fairly early on in its life and pretty much instantly fell in love with what I saw.
No, this isn't going to be a bitch and whine fest over the guys at SOE celebrating SWGs 5th anniversary (Don't even get me started on that one).
It pretty much consumed a lot of my off-duty time. But in October 2004 the game got a whole lot bigger with the release of the first expansion - Jump to Lightspeed.
If you were to flash back about 10 years before that period and you would see the beginings of my gaming addiction taking form, along with my love affair of sci-fi.
When I was a teenager I used to mess around with my dads home pc and often get shouted at for screwing around with stuff he thought I didn't understand. He would get really pissed at me if I installed a game without consulting him about it first.
After a while I learned that my dads overall knowledge of computing wasn't so hot and all I had to do was hide the shortcuts and rename the directories and he had no clue!
And so it was that I had many happy hours after installing TIE Fighter and X-Wing Alliance. My father remained blissfully unaware of this little addiction of mine until he came home from work one day and I'd forgotton to hide the joystick!
However, I digress as usual.
The Jump to Lightspeed expansion gave players who were so inclined the opportunity to fly many different types of ship (depending on your faction of choice) and enter space combat above the planets they'd been happily exploring for the previous 11 months.
The chance to eventually fly a YT-1300, a Tie Advanced, an A/B/X/Y-wing or even a Firespray Interceptor like Mr Fett used to fly was just too awesome for words.
In addition, each faction had 3 flight schools (for lack of better words) with their own missions and storylines. These schools were the means for progression by both killing a shit ton of enemy fighters and carrying out scripted missions to gain advanced training.
I am quite proud of my accomplishments in SWG space having mastered the Pilot profession 5 times, trying out the Imp (twice), Rebel (twice also) and Privateer schools!
All this mounted up to having almost 2 games in 1. Your friends not online to go hit the Geo caves on Yavin? Fine, head up in to Kessel space and take on the gunboats if you're man enough!
The reason I bring up these painful memories (*sniff* RIP Galaxies) is that, despite the blatant gap in the market for a decent Sci-fi MMO, there have not been any decent space sims on the market for quite some time now either.
I may be getting ahead of myself but this looks like a big ball of awesomesauce as far as I'm concerned.
The reports I've read over at Massively indicate that the company behind it (Netdevil) has learned from its previous mistakes with titles such as Auto Assault and is not planning on releasing this game until. it's. ready. - a philosophy that several other game development companies could do well by adopting imho.
I've already applied for the beta and, if space sims are your thing, would suggest you do too. If you have already applied, you may want to take a trip back to their site as they are asking people to re-apply.
Now all I have to do is convince the lady of the house that the HOTAS Cougar is a worthwhile and essential purchase!
If you're looking to read up on more of what they have planned, you can either head on over to the official site or read the reports at Massively or TenTonHammer.
Having read many of the articles released so far, I for one am looking forward to this release.
10 years ago