A Potential Classic in Pharos IV…maybe

Posted: April 26, 2009 in Action, Shooter

Pharos hasn’t received too much hoopla on the blogs or forums, but this has the potential to be a great space combat game.  The 3D graphics are inspiring, and the initial intro animation is interesting enough that you’ll probably enjoy watching it every so often.  From the space station to the enemy ships, you can tell the devs spent time on the details.  The space background that you fly through looks amazing as well.  While the gameplay does require some work before Pharos becomes a top-notch game, it is fun.

Your objective is to protect the Pharos space station from enemies and the occasional asteroid.  Usually what makes or breaks a game is the controls, and in Pharos’ case, the devs did the controls right.  The controls are straightforward: tilt to fly your ship or to reverse and you have throttle slider on the left to speed up or down.  You also have a radar to track enemy ships and the space station, and your main firepower is torpedos.  Also, you can calibrate your controls, and my advice is to set your sensitivity nearly all the way down to make the ship easier to control.  You also have powerups which you come across in your battles that enable you to recharge your energy, but more perks should be added.  I need to mention that there is autoresume which comes in handy when your game is interrupted.

Here’s something to pay attention to: when you shoot and nick an enemy ship as it does a flyby, you can actually see the resulting fuel leak as it takes damage.  What would be helpful is a tutorial on the various functions of your ship’s dashboard.  I found the fire button a little awkward since it sits in the top right-hand corner, and it would be ideal if your weapons would stay locked on to a target for a second or two.  Since your ship doesn’t have any shields, I’d like to see an update where you can start at the last level completed instead of having to start over again.

While Pharos doesn’t have much of a storyline, the devs hopefully continue to update the gameplay with additional ships, missions, enemies and levels to add more urgency to the gameplay.  I like the direction that the devs have already taken which shows a lot of promise.  If you’re still deciding, at least check out the lite version to see if this appeals to you.

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