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"A galaxy fit to be lost"

In the year 2024, excessive pollution forced the people of Earth to warp into a new galaxy. It was in this galaxy of 500 planets that the humans battled for ownership of the newfound universe. In the end of this war, many planets exploded and the coordinates of the planets were lost.

Now the year is 2067, and the New Galaxy Government is interested in hiring pilots to re-locate the surviving planets in the galaxy. Realizing the danger of this mission, a high reward is being offered to the pilot who can bring in the complete list of planets. You are one of those pilots...

Graphics (n.)
The use of animation and visual effects to stimulate the senses
The prettiest graphics in Cyberion take place whenever your ship is flying around space, searching for planets. Some of the other screens you access, especially when you try to land the ship, just don't seem to match the detail that the Asteroids sequence of the game offers. However, Cyberion doesn't suffer from a flickering problem or any graphic glitches.

There is also some menu-style graphics for the various status screens you can access. Some care was taken in making the Stock Market screens, Intergalactic map charts, and the screen that displays your current supply of various stocks. These too seem to lack detail despite the polished look that these screens do offer.

Sound/Music (n.)
The smooth blend of atmospheric sounds and original harmonies
Seasoned veterans of old school arcade games will find the parts that make up Cyberion familiar, as if Cyberion looks like it came from an arcade machine or two. The sound takes no exception either. Though somewhat faint, Cyberion does come with some effective SB sound effects, including asteroid explosions and gunfire. There's even a different sound for your ship as you attempt to land.

Although Cyberion does try to capture the arcade experience, a game with a world so huge (you have to fly through almost 10,000 screens to solve this game) should at least come with some space music. I'm not asking for the greatest music in the world, just something a little original and jumpy to keep me going as I jet through this 8-hour space road trip.

Gameplay (n.)The precision of control and involvement of character within its universe v
LutasArts describes Cyberion as a combination of Asteroids, Lander, and Dodgem. This is because you have to be pretty proficient at all three of these types of games to master every aspect of Cyberion.

The main part of your mission is to locate the 500 planets by navigating your ship through a galaxy of Asteroids. If you accidentally crash into an asteroid you needn't worry; but you'll lose some credits in the process. Credits, which are earned by blasting the asteroids to kingdom come, can be used to purchase stocks at the stock market, conveniently located whenever you land on one of the planets you've found.

The world in Cyberion is pretty gigantic, so if you want to travel back to a planet that had a great bargain in the stock market, you can zip your ship up to Hyperspace. There's only one catch: In Hyperspace, you have to travel quickly through a wormhole. If something hits you along the way, your ship is toast.

Despite the depth that this game offers, the problem in gameplay lies in the fact that finding the planets is really your only real objective in this game. You can win Cyberion simply by floating your ship through the cosmos, which sometimes gets stuck in the thrust position if you fiddle enough with the keyboard handler. Then, while the ship is stuck moving forward, you can watch your ship crash into all the asteroids while you're inching yourself closer to solving the game. The other elements, the Lander, Dodgem, and Stock Market parts, need to somehow be seamed into this game's concept.

Story (n.)
The creativity and presentation of the game's critical plot
The story that sets up Cyberion is written in text at the game's title screen. Although there are no complicated demos or graphic sequences to set up the story, LutasArts does manage to set the tone for the space exploration Cyberion was built to simulate.
Replay Value (n.)
The timelessness of the gamer's delight, such that the experience can be repeated again and again
(Very Poor) This is going to sound like a very strange complaint: this game is too BIG! With about 500 planets to locate in a world about 100*100 screens long, you have about a 1 in 20 chance of finding a new planet each time you navigate into a new screen. The rest of the time is spent driving your ship past or into asteroids, which can really get boring after a while. I never realized that the universe could be so vast...
Challenge (v.)
To strike the mental nerve in such a way as to stimulate human thought and reflexes
There are only two ways for your ship to explode. One way is by crash-landing onto the planet's surface instead of making it to the landing pad. The other way is to crash into a foreign object while flying into hyperspace. Fortunately, neither of these actions happen very often when you're trying to beat this game.

The bulk of the challenge will be making sure you've checked every nook and cranny of outer space for the 500 planets you're supposed to find. If you fly a little clumsily, you may miss part of the grid and possibly fail to record the coordinates of one of the planets. Then it's like trying to find a needle in a haystack. The key to beating this game will be your ability to perform an organized search.

Fun Factor (n.)
The overall entertainment value as maintained throughout the adventure
This is one of those QB games you pick up and say to yourself, "This game has got it together, but I have a pretty keen idea on how it could be better." I'm sure upon playing it that you would develop some ideas yourself. Frankly, this game sparked so many creative juices in the V Planet staff that even we had to pitch our two cents about how Cyberion can be improved.

The good news is Cyberion has plenty of arcade elements to turn any QB afficionado into an addict. The bad news is that there needs to be a little programming done to make all the elements of this game more seamless. This trading game emphasizes too much on asteroid blasting and not enough on the Lander and Dodgem components that help give this arcade shooter some variety.

Players 1 player Genre: Arcade/Shooter/Trading Game
Rating To solve: 7-8 hours Final Rating: 8/35

To download this game, click here.
Installation Tips
wTo maximize entertainment value, it is recommended by LutasArts that you print "STOCKS.HTM" before playing Cyberion. This chart will be able to help you during the game.
wTo play Cyberion, unzip the file and run "SPACE2.EXE".

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