When the space dwelling era swings around, it will most certainly look similar to the one in Infinite Lagrange. What started off with a beautiful narrative and compelling introductory videos, soon morphed into a space simulation worthy of every ounce of attention. It captivated me with its simple, yet exciting battles, but required a little bit more than just random taps to get things moving.
Upon first inspection, it seems like a much more visual game than first meets the eye. The amount of detail that went into every single element is astounding, and the actual gameplay, while not as exhilirating as I first expected, is still extremely tactile and smooth.
While I couldn’t quite pinpoint the direction the game wanted me to move towards, it soon became pretty clear that each player can choose their own path and there is more than one right approach. You can choose to be aggressive, attack other players and try to conquer every best spot in an asteroid belt, or you can ‘hug your nonexistent peace shield’ and be the lone galaxy wolf. Both approaches are equally rewarding, depending on the play style. Being the pacifist that I am, I went with the latter.
It seemed a little bit lacking at times, and got me wondering - why do I keep making all these upgrades if I don’t fight any real-life player? But that’s because you don’t actually feel the pressure of ‘having’ to upgrade every single corner of the ship within a day. It can all be done in time, at your own pace.
A really interesting feature that I noticed is the timer (if I could say that). Everything takes hours to complete, from the smallest update to researching blueprints. That’s exactly what it would take in real life too, I imagine. That’s a neat little touch that adds more depth to Infinite Lagrange than I first expected. Of course, everything could be sped up, but there’s no incentive to do so. At least, none that would make me want to spend my hard-earned Speedup.
Now when it comes to the actual ships, research and blueprints, things took a little turn. I didn’t know where to start, but after reading through what felt like endless pages of information, I managed to soak in enough intel to learn exactly which way I should be headed. So, I grabbed a black market blueprint (BP) and I snatched the Winged Hussar - how’s that for good luck?!
Since the Winged Hussar came with a bunch of requirements, that was the next step in my space career. I slowly started saving up resources, making all sorts of upgrades, and building up my fleet. It is extremely rewarding once you get to the point where you understand what each feature is for and how it works. It gets the blood pumping and makes you eager to speed up everything - except… you shouldn’t. Should you?
That takes us to the current point in space and time. Now.
So, what’s the takeaway? That’s pretty simple. Infinite Lagrange is a game where every decision matters, and the order in which you do things matter even more. Every upgrade and research takes time, so it’s a much more realistic simulation than first meets the eye. And while the space battling element is not key towards progressing, it's a good enough reason to make you want to reach a point where you experience it.
The other elements, the ships, upgrades, research and space exploration are equally exciting, although it might have been a tad bit better if there were some more immersive narrative videos like there were in the beginning of the game.
Overall, Infinite Lagrange has so far delivered plenty of atmosphere and gameplay that SLG fans will no doubt appreciate. As for the non-seasoned players, they might find the long processes of acquiring new technologies and research somewhat slow and tedious at first but, with a little patience, will likely find themselves won over by the sheer amount of possibilities available in the game.
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