Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters

Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters is now available for free on Steam, offering the re-rerelease of the classic sci-fi action/strategy game formerly known as Star Control 2. The launch of the game under a new title is likely a byproduct of the protracted legal battle over rights to the Star Control series that finally got sorted nearly five years ago. In a horrible bit of timing, the launch comes amid a report of layoffs at Toys for Bob, the game's original developer. Here's a Steam Launch Trailer showing the game's appearance is unchanged. It would seem that there are some touchy legal aspects to this, as the description of the relaunch refers to this as a classic space game, but avoids mentioning its previous title at all. But the game's history is not being buried. Word is: "Be sure to check out Pistol Shrimp's new Channel 44 podcast series, where the team talks with various industry visionaries about The Ur-Quan Masters and game design. The first episode featuring Tim Cain is out now, with Ken Levine to be featured in tomorrow's episode." Here's a bit more:
Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters® is a classic space game that captures the charm of retro science-fiction, space combat, and high adventure. Your story begins as the captain of the last human starship, with Earth trapped under a hostile forcefield. You are the last hope for humanity in a fight for control of the galaxy, as you explore thousands of unknown worlds and get dozens of quirky aliens to help.

​The galaxy is thriving with alien species, each with unique mysteries and motives. Meet an eclectic cast of characters, brought to life with full English voiceover. Ask sharp questions, make new friends, and exchange colorful insults.
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20.
 
Re: Morning Patches
Feb 20, 2024, 23:53
Dev
20.
Re: Morning Patches Feb 20, 2024, 23:53
Feb 20, 2024, 23:53
Dev
 
BigVlad wrote on Feb 20, 2024, 07:20:
The time limit killed the game for me. I was having fun exploring the universe, minding my own business, then all of a sudden all of the systems start disappearing and there is no way to stop it. Game over. It's been a while since I played but it felt like the time limit was way too short. Maybe if I can find a hack that disables the time limit, I'll give it another go.
The megamod linked in this thread has a stop cleansing option and a reverse cleansing option. As well as being a HD remaster.
https://uqm-mods.sourceforge.net/Features
19.
 
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters
Feb 20, 2024, 23:48
Dev
19.
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters Feb 20, 2024, 23:48
Feb 20, 2024, 23:48
Dev
 
Prez wrote on Feb 19, 2024, 14:44:
There's just something special about the old pixelated DOS game look that I adore. This, the Original X-COM, and Masters of Orion are still beautiful to me.
OMG yes. Will anything ever surpass those 3 originals?
18.
 
Re: Star Control 2 Returns
Feb 20, 2024, 20:53
18.
Re: Star Control 2 Returns Feb 20, 2024, 20:53
Feb 20, 2024, 20:53
 
Star Control 2 is a timeless classic, amazing from start to finish. From the unique aliens (who didn't fall in love with the various aliens as you communicate (or try) with them? always loved the Orz in particular) and storyline to the fun combat dynamics -- Super Melee was a full game in itself which consumed untold hours upon hours of gameplay for me.

Super Melee

Star Control II: Super Melee (1080P)

Good times for sure.
17.
 
Re: Morning Patches
Feb 20, 2024, 16:44
17.
Re: Morning Patches Feb 20, 2024, 16:44
Feb 20, 2024, 16:44
 
BigVlad wrote on Feb 20, 2024, 07:20:
The time limit killed the game for me. I was having fun exploring the universe, minding my own business, then all of a sudden all of the systems start disappearing and there is no way to stop it. Game over. It's been a while since I played but it felt like the time limit was way too short. Maybe if I can find a hack that disables the time limit, I'll give it another go.
The time limit is pretty long, assuming you at make at least a token effort to follow up on leads you're given in conversations. Even if you skip the portal spawner until late game, it still gives you time to get everything done, probably twice, before the genocides begin. Just about the only things you can't do are wander around back and forth having no idea where to go, and strip mine star systems one by one. It's a story-based game with a heavy Starflight influence (where the bad guys could also wipe out the universe), and it's not a great mining/economy/upgrading game. If that's what you're looking for I recommend passing on Star Control 2 and playing an open-ended game like Endless Sky, Transcendence, NAEV or Elite. Or just watch it on YouTube.
16.
 
Re: Star Control 2 Returns
Feb 20, 2024, 10:44
16.
Re: Star Control 2 Returns Feb 20, 2024, 10:44
Feb 20, 2024, 10:44
 
https://uqm-mods.sourceforge.net/Download
If you're one of those people crying over the resolution, just get the UQM mod, and apply it to this. It's compatible.
--
"For every human problem,
there is a neat, simple solution;
and it is always wrong."
--H.L. Mencken
15.
 
Re: Morning Patches
Feb 20, 2024, 07:20
15.
Re: Morning Patches Feb 20, 2024, 07:20
Feb 20, 2024, 07:20
 
The time limit killed the game for me. I was having fun exploring the universe, minding my own business, then all of a sudden all of the systems start disappearing and there is no way to stop it. Game over. It's been a while since I played but it felt like the time limit was way too short. Maybe if I can find a hack that disables the time limit, I'll give it another go.
Avatar 58173
14.
 
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters
Feb 20, 2024, 03:12
14.
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters Feb 20, 2024, 03:12
Feb 20, 2024, 03:12
 
There is also the almost forgotten CRT effect. I'm sure that if you played this side by side on a modern LCD and an 100Hz CRT monitor, you would have a different experience of the game's graphics.
Avatar 58327
13.
 
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters
Feb 20, 2024, 02:10
Prez
 
13.
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters Feb 20, 2024, 02:10
Feb 20, 2024, 02:10
 Prez
 
Tom wrote on Feb 19, 2024, 23:40:
SC2's graphics were amazing for its time, 32 years ago.

I really liked the unique fonts for each alien race, and there were a lot of them. A special touch that really added to the personality.

I think it still looks amazing now, so it's probably the art and aesthetic that I find appealing more than the graphics.
“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”
- Mahatma Gandhi
Avatar 17185
12.
 
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters
Feb 20, 2024, 01:08
12.
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters Feb 20, 2024, 01:08
Feb 20, 2024, 01:08
 
I'm in the minority. I do not particularly like the Mark 2 since it's obviously a nod to Close Encounters with that design. I love the skeletal, utilitarian, modular nature of the Flagship.
"Just take a look around you, what do you see? Pain, suffering, and misery." -Black Sabbath, Killing Yourself to Live.

“Man was born free, and he is everywhere in chains” -Jean-Jacques Rousseau
Avatar 21247
11.
 
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters
Feb 19, 2024, 23:40
Tom
11.
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters Feb 19, 2024, 23:40
Feb 19, 2024, 23:40
Tom
 
SC2's graphics were amazing for its time, 32 years ago.

I really liked the unique fonts for each alien race, and there were a lot of them. A special touch that really added to the personality.
10.
 
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters
Feb 19, 2024, 20:20
10.
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters Feb 19, 2024, 20:20
Feb 19, 2024, 20:20
 
If you say so BoP, I'm sure you are right.

Sadly, I'm a handicapped gamer, needing a certain graphics level, ugly graphics hurt me.
My loss, I know: I've never played nor will, the original Baldur's Gate or Fallout original sagas, etc.
Shameful Shame
Avatar 58799
9.
 
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters
Feb 19, 2024, 19:57
9.
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters Feb 19, 2024, 19:57
Feb 19, 2024, 19:57
 
WannaLogAlready wrote on Feb 19, 2024, 19:30:
Added to account.
Watched the trailer with extremely half screen archaic graphics.
Removed from account.

You are seriously missing out. SC2 is easily one of the most seminal, legendary influences on almost all games of all time.
"Just take a look around you, what do you see? Pain, suffering, and misery." -Black Sabbath, Killing Yourself to Live.

“Man was born free, and he is everywhere in chains” -Jean-Jacques Rousseau
Avatar 21247
8.
 
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters
Feb 19, 2024, 19:30
8.
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters Feb 19, 2024, 19:30
Feb 19, 2024, 19:30
 
Added to account.
Watched the trailer with extremely half screen archaic graphics.
Removed from account.
Avatar 58799
7.
 
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters
Feb 19, 2024, 19:04
7.
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters Feb 19, 2024, 19:04
Feb 19, 2024, 19:04
 
they must have the Mark II and allow for flagship customization!
6.
 
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters
Feb 19, 2024, 19:03
6.
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters Feb 19, 2024, 19:03
Feb 19, 2024, 19:03
 
Still the greatest game ever made!
5.
 
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters
Feb 19, 2024, 17:38
5.
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters Feb 19, 2024, 17:38
Feb 19, 2024, 17:38
 
My roommates and I played the hell out of that game back in college. Yes, we were dorks who were gaming while everyone else partied and had fun.
4.
 
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters
Feb 19, 2024, 15:55
Jaysen
 
4.
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters Feb 19, 2024, 15:55
Feb 19, 2024, 15:55
 Jaysen
 
Quirky and still fun. I'm really excited that they original creators are going to try and do a true sequel. Will be interesting to see if they go with the Mark II from the final credits. I'm excited to see.
3.
 
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters
Feb 19, 2024, 15:48
3.
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters Feb 19, 2024, 15:48
Feb 19, 2024, 15:48
 
free = gud
-=Threadcrappeur Extraordinaire=-
2.
 
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters
Feb 19, 2024, 14:44
Prez
 
2.
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters Feb 19, 2024, 14:44
Feb 19, 2024, 14:44
 Prez
 
There's just something special about the old pixelated DOS game look that I adore. This, the Original X-COM, and Masters of Orion are still beautiful to me.
“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”
- Mahatma Gandhi
Avatar 17185
1.
 
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters
Feb 19, 2024, 13:24
1.
Re: Star Control 2 Returns as Free Stars: The Ur-Quan Masters Feb 19, 2024, 13:24
Feb 19, 2024, 13:24
 
Shame we never got a good sequel to SC2. I own, and have played, the most recent game from Stardock with "Star Control" in the name but it's just that, the name. It has no connection at all to the previous story because they do not have the rights to the actual lore and meat of the Star Control universe. It was mediocre at best.
"Just take a look around you, what do you see? Pain, suffering, and misery." -Black Sabbath, Killing Yourself to Live.

“Man was born free, and he is everywhere in chains” -Jean-Jacques Rousseau
Avatar 21247
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