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What is Star Trek: Resurgence

Authentic Star Trek adventure from former members of Telltale Games. Engage in diplomacy, pilot shuttlecraft, and use your tricorder and phaser to overcome challenging puzzles and deadly threats. Tough decisions will impact relationships, your story, and the fate of the galaxy. What will YOU do?

Review

Star Trek is a deceptively hard franchise to adapt to video games despite the fact there’s been dozens of games that have adapted it. There’s good games, good Trek adaptations, and very rarely good Trek adaptions that are good games. Usually, the video games content themselves to try to do one thing very well like Elite Force where you are a bunch of Space Marines shooting up other universes on VOY or Bridge Commander where you single handedly eliminate the entire Cardassian Navy (Commander Saffi Larson, shut up!). Star Trek: Online is like a heart monitor for quality with some missions versus good and others just killing the entire population o the Beta Quadrant. As you can tell, a lot of these games don’t fit into the spirit of utopian peaceful cooperation even if they’re fun as hell.

Star Trek: Resurgence is not a perfect game but it manages the mixture of exploration, investigation, diplomacy, and techno-babble mini-games better than the vast majority of Star Trek games. A lot of reviewers say it is close to a Telltale game (and had several developers who used to make those for a living) but that isn’t a very good description. More precisely, it feels like one of the BETTER Telltale games before they just started churning them out and removed all interactivity from them. The game has multiple endings even if the story is mostly linear and you can choose whether some characters live or die based around your actions. A sequel is unlikely, which is a shame, so they do let you make some significant changes.

The premise for Star Trek: Resurgence is that you are two characters on the U.S.S. Resolute. Random aside but I think Star Trek: Resurgence is a pretty awesome title by itself and it get a little confusing to have the two similar words in the game. Anyway, you are either alien-human hybrid, Commander Jara Rydek (Krizia Bajos) or engineer Carter Diaz (Josh Keaton). Both of them have defined personalities but ones you can choose the leanings of. Jara is cool and professional but torn between being loyal to her captain or the ship’s crew. Carter is an amiable lower decker who either wants to do what’s right by his friends or do his job professionally. The “right” decision in the game isn’t always the immediately obvious one too.

The Resolute is a ship that just underwent a refit after half the crew was killed in one of those horrifying events that happen to every ship that isn’t the Enterprise. Jara is the replacement first officer and notices immediately everyone is on edge and the captain is a lot more conservative than is typical for Starfleet. He demands absolute loyalty and is petty if he doesn’t get it. They’re on a mission to a planet which recently had a revolution and is between the exploitative overclass versus the exploited laborers. Should be pretty easy, right? Well, it would be if EVIL wasn’t involved.

I won’t spoil the plot of the game but it is full of little adventures spread throughout what feels like an entire season of a Star Trek series that never happened. “Episode” happen with a continuing story throughout from picking up Ambassador Spock to investigating weird technology to dealing with ancient precursor races of the kind that had been mentioned in the franchise before. You do flying, shooting, science, and diplomatic missions throughout the game. Whenever you think you’re done with new mini-games, a new one is introduced.

This is one of the flaws of the game, however. Basically, a lot of the game is made up of busywork. The real appeal of Star Trek: Resurgence is the storytelling, characterization, and fidelity to the Star Trek universe. This really feels like the TNG era of Star Trek and it is as bright and optimistic as Star Trek usually is while balancing it against drama. I rapidly came to care about a lot of the characters and that’s something I rarely say about Telltale games except for rare exceptions (The Wolf Among Us, Game of Thrones, and the original The Walking Dead).

Of the two protagonists, I have to say I like Jara Rydek a lot more than Carter Diaz. It’s not that Carter is a bad character, it’s just I’m all about those smooth confidant Number Ones. The fact she’s an alien-human hybrid also is a nice change of pace from the usual collection of humans. I wouldn’t mind having her as the star of a sequel if this game manages to find enough of a following to warrant one.

I like the simple set up of the Hotari versus the Alydians. The Hotari have been mining dilithium for centuries on behalf of the latter because they were a Pre-Warp civilization that couldn’t take advantage of it. Now, they’ve seized the means of production and are ready to join the galactic community on their own terms. However, the Alydians aren’t one-dimensional villains and are more interested in a negotiated settlement versus a military one.

In conclusion, Star Trek: Resurgence is something that fans of Star Trek will probably get the most out of. It’s a very fun game that manages to embody the spirit of the franchise. However, the game tries to insert a lot more gameplay even when it’s not necessary. They should have focused on making things like the phaser fights and flying more fun versus throwing in mini-games that, well, aren’t.

Available here

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