The holodeck is the one piece of Star Trek equipment that I'd never use if it really existed. Granted, it can virtually create any location and must be tons of fun, but the thing is buggy.
Think about it: how many times have we seen the holodeck malfunction? My father's Pinto is more reliable.
By now, you'd think that the Federation would have built a reliable holodeck. The same could be said of Star Trek: Armada, an excellent real-time strategy game that is easily the most exciting Trek title to date.
After enduring all the tepid adventure games (A Final Unity, Hidden Evil), the ill-conceived starship sim (Starfleet Academy), and the clumsy turn-based strategy game (Birth of the Federation), Armada is a roiling RTS game that would be perfect if not for the bugs.
The obvious inspiration for Armada is the Dominion War, which took place during the last few seasons of Deep Space Nine.
The designers have attempted to capture the look and feel of those sprawling space battles that featured hundreds of starships. Armada is set after the Dominion War, when the Federation, Klingon, and Romulans must face an imminent Borg invasion.
The good: Excellent graphics; top-notch plot; great Borg missions. The bad: Bugs, bugs, and more bugs; pathfinding could use work; first half of game too easy.
The bottom line: If not for the bugs, this would be a perfect game for Trek and RTS fans alike.
Single player: Good
ESRB rating: E (Everyone)
Click the captions for more game shots!
-Resistance is futile
-Frozen in time
-I'm all ears
-A heavy defense
-Klingons vs. Borg
Armada does a great job of balancing the story and the game between the four races, particularly with the insidious Borg.
Armada advances the plot from the perspective of each of the races. Like a television season, the game is separated into 20-odd episodes, or missions. The Federation gets to clean up Jem' Haddar stragglers; the Klingons are embroiled in yet another civil war (these guys go through more governments than Italy); the Romulans slaughter the Ferengi and the Cardassians for an Omega particle (for non-Trekkers, the Omega is a big and pretty particle that the Borg like);
And the Borg want to assimilate Earth. Amazingly, not only does the plot manage to hold together, but it's so strong that it makes you wish they had used it for the television series instead of that banality that poses as a Star Trek script these days.
Without trying to give away too much, who'd ever have thought that assimilating Earth would be so much fun?
Activision injected some uniqueness into each race's ships, with mostly good effects. On the basic level, all the races share similar ship classes; all the races have a scout, a science vessel, a dreadnought, and so on.
On a more advanced level, though, Armada gives each race unique special weapons that are appropriate to that race. For instance, the Romulans have the ability to research "phase cloak," which renders a ship invisible and able to pass through solid matter to boot (taken, of course, from the TNG episode "The Pegasus").
The Federation gets to use the Manheim effect (seen in the early TNG episode "We'll Always Have Paris") to create temporary clones of ships. And the Borg, of course, have their assimilation power.
There are some great missions where the Borg must use their assimilation capability to capture enemy starships and then deconstruct them for resources.
Star Trek Armada for PC is a great game that you won't regret buying at all. You get to play from 4 different alien races which are very widely known. The Federation, Klingons, Romulans, and Borg. It is very fun because you get to see things from different sides. I haven't beat it yet, but I hear you get to assimilate earth! The battle modes are great, sometimes your ships don't listen right away???? Well . . . I'd keep talking but . . . wait. No I wouldn't