Andy Naylor reviews Battlestar Galactica: Deadlock…
The remade Battlestar Galactica finished 9 years ago. Let that sink in for a minute and wonder where the time has gone. During its critically acclaimed run, fans of the show never got a game to match the quality of the series. Finally, fans of the series have a game that lives up to the billing with Battlestar Galactica: Deadlock.
Battlestar Galactica: Deadlock takes place during the first Cylon war and during the Jupiter Project, which spawned the first set of Battlestars; and the Galactica – which has gone missing. Battlestar Galactica: Deadlock is a real-time strategy game, imagine Command and Conquer but in the BSG universe.
Surprisingly, this is an excellent game for RTS fans as well as BSG fans. At first glance the controls, actions, manoeuvres and handling look as complicated as piloting a real spaceship. However, the tutorial system holds the user’s hand nicely throughout the early levels without keeping the missions dull. Once it has been fully understood, it really is quite intuitive and natural to control. The only time it isn’t is on the mission screens in the command centre of Daedalus, not a major issue but something that could’ve been improved between the PC release and the console editions.
Graphically the game is decidedly mediocre. It doesn’t look poor but it won’t blow you away with its crispness but then it doesn’t need to – that’s not what an RTS is about. However, in gameplay slow-down is fairly common, and while it too bad an experience it does leave the user with slight negative feeling knowing that other more complicated and graphically impressive games do not suffer from the same issue.
The story is well thought out and engaging, immediately the player is hooked by the mystery surrounding the whereabouts of the Battlestar Galactica. This simple hook drives the narrative forward and keeps the player intrigued to how events will unfold, not to mention is perfectly executed. It manages all this while being a space-simulator and resource managing game that requires careful planning in order to progress successfully. Not to mention that the AI offers a more than challenging opponent, expect to lose ships in every tough victory.
One minor thing that seemed to be unnecessary was the names of the characters. Cain, Agathon, to name but two. It reminded me of the dreadful Alien vs. Predator:
Requiem film where the main character was called Dallas in a show of “Oh look, we really are fans of the original and definitely not cashing in” nod to fans. Yes, picky, but something that didn’t need to be done.
Battlestar Galactica: Deadlock is a superb and engaging RTS game that is well worth the investment of time and money. The developer, Slitherine, maintain a healthy social media presence in order to keep the fans involved in the skirmish portion of the game.
+ Honours the series beautifully.
+ Excellent narrative.
+ Intuitive controls.
– Mediocre graphics that suffer from slowdown.
Reviewed on PS4.