No Earth game (SC2 Spoilers)

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Tormuse
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No Earth game (SC2 Spoilers)

Post by Tormuse » Tue Feb 12, 2013 7:48 am

Hi all! :) Warning: The following post contains plans for a really absurd game. :P

I kind of randomly came across this forum while looking up information about Star Control 2. I've enjoyed the game (and Star Control 1 before it) since I was a little kid and have won the game several times. Recently, I've found myself wondering (and this may sound ridiculous) if it's possible to win the game without ever visiting the Earth starbase...

Impossible? Maybe not? Has it been done before? I don't know, but I've decided to give it a try, and what's the point of doing something so ridiculous without having someone to share it with? :D (And this discussion board still seems pretty active) Obviously, since I will be trying to reach victory conditions as fast as possible, this will require that I talk about spoilers, hence the warning in the thread title.

I'm doing pretty well at it so far. The biggest hurdle at the beginning was the Slylandro Probes, since I have no means of giving my flagship extra speed and I can't evade them, so the first order of business was to get to the Slylandro homeworld and get the Probe destruct code. This was made even more complicated by the fact that the game seems to spawn extra Probes if you haven't been to the starbase yet! (Probably to discourage people from doing exactly what I'm doing) :P This part took a lot of saves and reloads, but by the end, I got pretty good at destroying Probes with Fwiffo's Spathi Eluder. (It's tough, but doable; I'll explain how in a later post)

What I did was I went to Alpha Wolf first, a star system that is close to Sol and has abundant life forms, and then flew on until I ran out of fuel. Once the Melnorme visited me, I traded the life form data to them and they gave me enough fuel to get to Arilou space, where I took the natural Quasispace portal the rest of the way to Beta Corvi. Once I got the Destruct Code, I could breathe a small sigh of relief, (I encountered no less than 23 Probes on the way there!) and visited the nearby Rainbow World for an infusion of credits so I can keep getting fuel from the Melnorme. Then, since I was in the neighbourhood, I got the components for the Portal Spawner and addressed the next big hurdle: Getting more crew!

Well, the Pkunk offered the solution to that. I picked up the four Pkunk ships that they offer you at their homeworld and took advantage of the fact that they sometimes regenerate with full crew in combat. What I would do was take the Pkunk ships in to combat with one crew member on board, get them killed, let them regenerate, and then finish the battle with full crew. Then I would recall the crew from the ship and redistribute as necessary. I got pretty good at fighting Mycon with the Pkunk, so they seemed the best candidates for this strategy and now, I have completely restocked my flagship, my Earthling Cruiser, my Spathi Eluder, and all four of my Pkunk Furies with crew! (Of course, that also took a lot of saves and reloads, since they don't always regenerate properly)

So, now with a good source of crew and fuel, I think I'm well on my way to doing this! It's a bit of a pain in the butt, traveling everywhere so slowly, (I renamed my captain to "slow" and the flagship to "slower" as a joke) :P but I'm making good progress. :)

If anyone has any comments, questions, or suggestions, I'd be glad to hear them. :)

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Death 999
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Re: No Earth game (SC2 Spoilers)

Post by Death 999 » Tue Feb 12, 2013 4:33 pm

It has been done. There was even a patch made so the game wouldn't crash if your first time at the Sol Starbase is when you have the Chmmr take you there.

Still, keep at it!

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Re: No Earth game (SC2 Spoilers)

Post by Dragon » Tue Feb 12, 2013 5:26 pm

Tormuse wrote:Probably to discourage people from doing exactly what I'm doing
Yup, I seem to remember Fred or Paul mentioning it to someone else who was trying complete the game without visiting earth but I can't find the post/chat so I may be mistaken.

I like the tactic of using the Pkunk to gain crew, I hadn't thought of that. I wonder though, if as the Pkunk reincarnate and there's only one on board, is there enough cosmic joyforce to fully reincarnate 8 Pkunk? Are you spreading life more thinly amongst them? Will you end up with a flagship full of zombie Pkunk? What happens if they eat the talking pets brain? These are the questions we must ask.

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Re: No Earth game (SC2 Spoilers)

Post by Tormuse » Tue Feb 12, 2013 9:55 pm

Death 999 wrote:It has been done. There was even a patch made so the game wouldn't crash if your first time at the Sol Starbase is when you have the Chmmr take you there.
Ooh, I don't know if my version is the patched one. :| I guess I'm going to find out! :P
Dragon wrote:...I wonder though, if as the Pkunk reincarnate and there's only one on board, is there enough cosmic joyforce to fully reincarnate 8 Pkunk? Are you spreading life more thinly amongst them? Will you end up with a flagship full of zombie Pkunk?
Well, since the Ilwrath have been slaughtering the Pkunk by the thousands, there are probably lots of Pkunk spirits floating around, ready to reincarnate at any time. Of course, they might still be zombies anyway. (For all we know, maybe they've all been zombies all along!) :P In any case, it's pretty safe to say that my crew is now made up of more (possibly zombie) Pkunk than humans. :)
Dragon wrote:What happens if they eat the talking pets brain?
Hmm... I haven't gotten that far, so I'll have to get back to you on that one. :P

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Re: No Earth game (SC2 Spoilers)

Post by oldlaptop » Tue Feb 12, 2013 10:06 pm

Tormuse wrote: Ooh, I don't know if my version is the patched one. :| I guess I'm going to find out! :P
Relatively recent versions (I think as of 0.4?) of The Ur-Quan Masters have the fix (including by extension things like the HD mod). There are other fixes, enhancements, and general differences in UQM, most notably the fact that UQM supports both DOS subtitles and 3DO speech.
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Re: No Earth game (SC2 Spoilers)

Post by Tormuse » Wed Feb 13, 2013 2:26 pm

Hmm... I'm not sure what version I downloaded... When I started playing, I tried it with my original copy of the game from the 90's, but it must've gotten corrupted over the years or something, because it started bugging out. :| I know I didn't download the UQM version; I observed my younger brother playing that a few years ago and I didn't like some of the voice-acting and I decided I'd rather have something closer to the original game.

Update on my game: I got the Burvix caster and used it to send the Ilwrath away. I had to fight a couple of Ilwrath with Fwiffo on the way to the Ilwrath homeworld, which wasn't fun, but fortunately, even with only 2 thrusters, I'm still faster than them! :o The only reason they caught up with me at all is the Slylandro Probes are continuing to harass me, and they're still coming at me at the same very frequent rate. Fortunately, I can just send the destruct code and not have to fight them, but it's still pretty tedious. (I still get the RU for them too!)

A couple of problems I've encountered with this playing style: Every time I encounter a ship in hyperspace, I emerge from the encounter facing "north." This is a problem if I ever want to travel "south," because I have to wait for my ship to very slowly turn around and ships frequently catch up with me before I can. Another thing is that I don't have an emergency escape unit on any of my ships, (since Commander Hayes is the one that first installs it) so any battle I do is to the death! This means that I can't visit any hostile alien homeworlds. It also means I can't resuscitate the Shofixti, since I would have to escape combat with them. :(

At any system I come to, I gather as many life forms as I can; I don't even bother doing a mineral scan, since I can't use it, so my resource gathering goes a bit faster. :) By now, I've gotten all the lander upgrades (with a bit of help from finding two more Rainbow Worlds) and I got the VUX beast for Admiral Zex and acquired the Shofixti Maidens. (I may not be able to resuscitate them, but there's a lot of valuable life forms on those planets) :D

I allied with the Spathi and the Orz (Commander Hayes is going to be very confused when they show up on his doorstep claiming that they're his allies now) :P and I got the Taalo shield, and now I'm visiting Shattered worlds in Mycon territory to collect Deep Child Egg case fragments, since I can trade those for Druuge Maulers at Zeta Persei. (extra crew source!) :D I think the Maulers will be good for the battle against the Umgah when it comes time to pick up the Dnyarri.

I started to try to visit the Zoq-Fot-Pik, (they give you free ships too!) :D but got overcome by so many Ur-quan ships that I just gave up. :| I can take out the Ur-Quan with Fwiffo, but it would take a long time, and I don't know if it's worth it. (Even if I approach them from the south) On a side note, I'm not looking forward to visiting Epsilon Camelopardalis to get the Syreen ships, since those are also in Ur-Quan space. :|

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Re: No Earth game (SC2 Spoilers)

Post by Draxas » Wed Feb 13, 2013 5:54 pm

Hmm, if you're playing the DOS version, then the best you're going to be able to do is get to the Chmmr. Once they install the bomb in your ship, it's going to crash out and you won't be able to complete the game. This was only patched out in UQM. Speaking of, you do know that if you don't like the voices, you can just mute them and play with only the DFOS text, right?

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Re: No Earth game (SC2 Spoilers)

Post by Tormuse » Thu Feb 14, 2013 4:02 am

Draxas wrote:...Speaking of, you do know that if you don't like the voices, you can just mute them and play with only the DFOS text, right?
Yeah, but the version I observed my brother playing was missing the ending sequence cutscenes. When he flew the flagship up to the Sa-Matra at the end, it immediately cut to the scene of the Zoq-Fot-Pik saying "Thank you for playing Star Control 2, etc." That made me suspect that there was stuff cut out of the UQM version and made me wonder what else might be cut out. I figured I'd rather be sure I have the complete game. Of course, that was years ago and now that I think about it, the newer versions of UQM probably have that stuff put back in, so maybe I'm worrying about nothing.

Does anyone happen to know if the saved games are compatible between versions? Maybe I can copy them over? (I'd rather not restart and have to kill 23 Slylandro Probes with a Spathi Eluder again!) :P

EDIT: And I'm discovering another source of frustration: If I screw up in combat and have to reload my saved game, I can't just hit "escape;" I have to destroy my flagship before I can reload, and since I have 50 crew now, it's a bit tedious to do so. :P

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Re: No Earth game (SC2 Spoilers)

Post by Death 999 » Thu Feb 14, 2013 2:54 pm

I think you can use F10 or F11 to quit. Or is it F1? One of the F-keys, anyway.

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Re: No Earth game (SC2 Spoilers)

Post by oldlaptop » Thu Feb 14, 2013 10:24 pm

Tormuse wrote: Yeah, but the version I observed my brother playing was missing the ending sequence cutscenes. When he flew the flagship up to the Sa-Matra at the end, it immediately cut to the scene of the Zoq-Fot-Pik saying "Thank you for playing Star Control 2, etc." That made me suspect that there was stuff cut out of the UQM version and made me wonder what else might be cut out. I figured I'd rather be sure I have the complete game. Of course, that was years ago and now that I think about it, the newer versions of UQM probably have that stuff put back in, so maybe I'm worrying about nothing.
I don't know if any version of UQM ever lacked those, but I *can* tell you that the DOS cutscenes are certainly in there now. :) You can use the 3DO videos instead if you want, but for legal reasons (TFB never had copyright to the 3DO cutscenes) you will either need to extract them from an original 3DO disc or download them, probably illegally (although I doubt anyone would care, even if the copyright holder still knows they hold the copyright they certainly aren't doing anything with it). There are a few differences between UQM and the original DOS version (almost all in dialog), because UQM is based on the 3DO version of Star Control II, with the 3DO voiceovers providing the dialog. Aside from some fairly minor editing, a few tidbits such as the location of the Mycon homeworld and the Melnorme's MetaChron were removed from the 3DO voiceovers and are thus not in UQM (nobody seems to remember why, although popular suspicion leans towards hintbook sales). UQM also uses the 3DO planet landing interface, as opposed to the original DOS one (which is generally considered to be a good thing). There are other differences between the DOS and 3DO versions which are configurable (the 3DO version used pictographs throughout the menus, for instance, whereas the DOS version used good old-fashioned text, UQM allows you to pick either style).
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