Games: Star Trek 25 Anniversary Review

Games: Star Trek 25 Anniversary Review

Long before Star Trek Online and long before Star Trek Armada, there was the mythical ‘Lost 4th Season of TOS’. American video game developer and publisher Interplay released Star Trek: 25 Anniversary in 1992. A long time has passed since this game chronicled various non-canon missions of the Starship Enterprise and its famed Captain James T. Kirk. Many – including myself – have long since cast this game into exile for its lack of options, its monotonous missions, and its short duration.
I fear you and I acted to soon on this one! What the 25th Anniversary offers you as a prospective gamer for our Star Trek RPG is the ‘classic’ approach. For one, this game greets you with a flush spectrum of colourful uniforms, exotic locations (for 1992 computer graphics mind you) and high intensity 1 v. 1 comp or 1 v. 2 comp space battles. The walk-through will make short work of the game, so I suggest you throw it away and simply explore the universe contained in a book of Star Charts that comes with the game!
Explore a universe filled with Klingon D7 Battlecruisers – who may be Romulan or Klingon – or chase down Orion ships who are all too eager for the spoils of the Federation. Don’t think for a moment that those famous original Star Trek faces won’t show up… *cough*cough*Harry Mud.* Sadly the original voice actor ‘Roger C. Carmel’ died in 1986 and was unable to provide voice overs for the game.
In my opinion Star Trek: 25th Anniversary captures the essence of the Star Trek universe as it unfolded in Kirk’s era. Whether it be careless and unnecessary Red Shirt deaths, or trigger-happy territorial enemies, this game throws you into the universe and dares your mid-90’s brain to have some fun and explore!
I never played with the sound on – the game has excellent subtitle options if memory serves me correctly – but I would imagine the sounds of phaser strikes and photon torpedo impact are fun! In space battles you’re options are pretty much limited to: ‘fire’, ‘run’ (unless fighting), ‘emergency power’, and ‘repair systems’. There is a surprising amount of choice in what you can… considering how old the game itself is.
I dare you to pick up this game – it’s almost out of print everywhere so you’ll have to hunt a bit if you don’t already have a copy – and play through it! For those who like duration there is an expansion pack or sequel, Star Trek: Judgement Rites, which was released in 1993. The website “How-to Geek” has a tutorial explaining how to install DOS games on a newer Windows box, if you happen to land yourself a copy!
Image from Wikipedia.

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