reviewed on PC
Space Rangers might not ring a bell to anyone but the most hardcore gamers. I didn't even know the game existed until a month ago and now that I've played it I have to say it's no wonder that it isn't known too well. It's not a bad game, mind you, but the time investment to get anywhere in it is really too much for any but the most dedicated gamers. And that is precisely what I didn't like about in this game.
The story of the game is absurdly dull which is only made worse by the fact it's told through dead boring screen-length blocks of text full of typos and grammatical errors (the game is actually Russian so I don't really blame them). In short, the five races of the universe battled against some kind of an organic menace with the help of the Space Rangers (which is a fancy name for a mercenary). This organic menace turned out to be perfectly harmless because it was only trying to defend itself. However, at some later point robots, known as the Dominators, attacked. Here the story gets a bit fuzzy but I'm doing my best translating/interpreting. It turns out that the five races actually manage to destroy the main base of the Dominators but some remnants of the enemy managed to escape and they are now stronger than ever. And that's where you come in: you have to destroy the Dominators and ensure the safety of the universe.
Ease of use
When you begin the game you will be able to choose from one of the five different races of the universe and from different classes ranging from pirate to warrior to trader. Then you will be able to select your special abilities and the equipment for your ship. It was in this very moment that I figured out that the game had one of the most unfriendly interfaces I had ever seen. They want to achieve the grade of customization that Galactic Civilizations had but the interface is so strange that the first time I played I didn't even know that I could change my characters' face or weapons and now it is too late to change them.
After you customize your character you will be transported to your motherland where you will be offered training. This training doesn't really help you get used to the controllers or to the weapons, it doesn't give you any hint of what is happening or why, it doesn't give you any tips on making a living. Heck, it hardly helps at all! After this brief guide you will be left on your own (well, with a mentally challenged partner, actually) to fight the Dominators. But not all hope is lost. To help you in your quest, your government will give you a pat on the back.
Crime (or anything else) doesn't pay
Then you will fall in a vicious spiral. You will have to play messenger for days, taking some "important" (notice the quotes) objects to other planets to pay for the expenses of playing a messenger. Most of the times you will end up owing more money than you actually make. Trading isn't that much better since the prices between planets hardly vary and the prices at which you buy are substantially higher than the prices at which you sell. Eventually you will make a good sale, but the money you win hardly covers all the expenses you just went through.
Then there's pirating. You can actually make a lot of money from that, the only problem being that it's illegal so you will also have to avoid the battleships they send after you and you can't land on most planets because they will send you to jail. Of course, you could also fight the Dominators which is by far the least profitable of the options since every system invaded by the Dominators will have dozens of Dominator ships which will kill you instantly or, if you manage to survive, cost you billions of credits to repair.
No Pros and Cons at this time