Space might be the final frontier for man but one of the most common environments for a video game. Beginning with Asteroids and continuing with Galaxian, EVE Online, StarCraft, and more, space is a hot place to have a game, especially an epic one. That’s a lot of pressure for the downloadable title X4: Foundations, a game that ostensibly borrows heavily from a bit of everything but does a lot well on its own.
How to Download X4: Foundations
You can download the title from either GOG.com or Steam. There’s also Collector’s Edtion available with a lot of additional goodies inside: a digital artbook, soundtrack, and even a novel. What is more, with this edition you’re getting access to two forthcoming DLCs.
You should also know what the X, the series of space trading combat sims has a long tradition that started with X: Beyond the Frontier, which was released in 1999. X4 is the eleventh game in the series
The Game Review
Published and developed by Egosoft, X4: Foundations is akin to EVE Online in that you are a spacefarer exploring distant worlds and dark reaches. The major difference between this game and EVE is that the former does not have the community or online presence of the latter. And that could be a good thing for some gamers, especially those that hate interaction and MMOs of any kind.
Billed as a sandbox game set in outer space, X4: Foundations allows you to engage in a range of activities related to that from piloting your own spacecraft to building out an empire among the stars. Egosoft spent considerable time making this mechanic right and it shows in the gameplay. Everything is quite seamless, from piloting your rig to switching over to a new one. It is so well done, in fact, that many players will think this is the main point of the game instead of just an aspect of it.
But that isn’t all there is to X4: Foundations. One huge aspect of the game is engaging in trade and building out a commercial empire. You can do this by building space stations using modular frameworks to help you achieve that. At this level, gamers can more actively influence the in-game world and have access to more and more simulation options. These kinds of echelons are typically reserved for the largest guilds and most dedicated players in EVE Online, but they are part of the core game in X4: Foundations.
To let you manage your empire, the title employs different views depending on what activity you are performing. If you are piloting a ship, your interface reflects that accordingly but if you are planning out your trading routes, the game switches to a more macro view of the universe to let you do that. Again, the keyword is seamless and the transitions between various modes of play is integral to the game.
Most assuredly a sim at its heart, the game’s attempts at doing more are noteworthy and competent if not a bit muddled as you proceed through the game. Increasingly you will be interested in other things other than micromanagement or piloting your ship through various things and that’s where the do-it-all nature of X4: Foundations begins to falter. Regardless, this is an awesome experience that can’t help but be recommended to fans of the genre.
- Awesome graphics and world to immerse yourself in
- Tons of things to do
- You choose your destiny in every way
- Does a lot but doesn’t do much perfectly
- If space isn’t your place then there isn’t much more to say
- Choose your destiny also sort of means choose your own fun and, for some players, a more guided experience is necessary