Anyone Call for a Lift?
One of the more unusual aspects to normal sim players is the fact that you can select your player class before you begin. If you play as a military leader, you are given a slalary and must defend the law. If you play as a trader, you job is the transfer and sale of goods for making a profit. There are numerous other classes to pick from, but suffice it to say that the class you pick to play truly does make a huge difference in how the game turns out.
For anyone familiar with the Gene Roddenberry TV series "Andromeda", you'll find the universe feeling quite at home. Instead of Trek-style infinite usage weapons, ballistics play a huge role in combat. Typically players playing a battlecruiser commander will be playing as a carrier. That being said, your on-board fighters will be your primary weapon, but you'll be relying heavily on long range missiles to do the dirty work. Loading out your weapons isn't free, however. As you traverse the (rather expansive) universe, star-system to star-system, you'll find you have to dock to space stations now and again to purchace new missiles for your ship, as well as purchase more repair materials and parts, and raw minterals for your reactors to burn on. If you find you're out of money, then your career may well be over. You'll also be sent on "quests" if operating in campaign mode where you must go to a star system, but if you take damage along the way, you may not make it there at all. This is where the RPG aspect comes in. you can even continuously upgrade your ship, provided you have enough money, to become the biggest, meanest cruiser around.
One of the features that I personally found exciting was the ability to land on the surface of a planet. For anyone who watched any of the Star Trek: Voyager episodes where they took the ship down on the surface to conduct repairs, the concept of landing a vessel the size of a few football stadiums has been but a dream. In BCM, you finally can land your ship on a planet (and you can manually land it if you wish to) to conduct repairs, avoid an enemy, deploy fighters to take out targets, or deploy other vehicles to attack planetary targets. You can even jump out of your cruiser and grab some guns to play in first person mode.
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