Among Star Trek fans, Star Trek – Voyager – Elite Force is considered one of the best adaptations from the famous science fiction franchise. In the new series of articles we will shed light on the action title.
Exactly 23 years ago today, on September 22, 2000, was published in this country Star Trek Voyager – Elite Forcea first-person shooter title for PC based on the well-known science fiction series from the Star Trek-Universe based. A fitting time to look back on the release of the classic PC game and launch a new series of articles called “Game History”. GamersGlobal to bring into being.
From the American game studio Raven Software Developed and published by publisher Activision (who had owned the Star Trek license since 1998), Elite Force was one of the first games to utilize the power of the Quake 3engine used. The new, powerful graphics engine from the technology gurus at id Software came up with impressive 3D effects and dynamic lighting. But the Raven Software team also made full use of the content of the title due to the iconic license.
The TV series as a model
Closely based on the successful US series, the game’s plot continues at the end of the sixth season Star Trek Voyager at. The USS Voyager is drawn into a mysterious space full of stranded ships controlled by a massive space station called The Forge. You take on the role of Ensign Munro (male or female), a member of the so-called “Hazard Team” – a well-armed elite special unit that takes on dangerous field missions for Voyager.
As part of the Hazard Team, your goal in the game is to protect Voyager from enemy attacks, infiltrate the other ships in the space graveyard and ultimately uncover the secret of the Forge. This means that you are not alone on your missions, but one or more team members are at your side (and interact and fight with you). And you could really use this support, because there were numerous action-packed battles against iconic opponents, such as the Borg or the Klingons, on the agenda. In addition, stealth passages were also sprinkled into the missions, which brought playful variety to the shooter-heavy action.
|In the missions of Star Trek – Voyager – Elite Force you travel as a team.|
The elaborately staged story campaign featured many well-known locations, characters and races from the Star Trek universe, so that the title exuded the typical Star Trek flair. Another plus: Some of the series actors could be recruited to provide their original voices for the game, including Kate Mulgrew as Captain Janeway, Jeri Ryan as Seven of Nine or a Tim Russ as Tuvok. Many cutscenes were also integrated, which were rendered in the style of the series and advanced the story. The cut scenes further enhanced the inherently linear gameplay and, combined with the interaction of the team members, gave the harmonious feeling that you were on an important mission in a Star Trek Voyager episode.
Visually, Elite Force was able to shine across the board: Raven Software’s experienced development team expertly exploited the graphic splendor of the newly licensed 3D engine to showcase the various game environments (such as the Borg cube) in a visually stunning and atmospheric way. The level of detail within the levels left Star Trek fans in seventh heaven in awe. The walk-through decks of the Voyager or the Borg cube, including instruments and control panels, were implemented in style, so that you almost felt like you were on board the Intrepid-class spaceship and other Star Trek ships. Only the somewhat awkward animations detracted from the overall graphical appearance of the title.
|The visit to the Borg cube and the fight against the Borg race was one of the atmospheric highlights of the title.|
In addition to the single-player campaign, there was also a multiplayer mode called “Holomatch”, which had various modes to choose from such as Deathmatch, Capture the Flag or Team Deathmatch. This also included some cards that were based on other well-known Star Trek series, such as Deep Space Nine or the Next Generation Enterprise D.
Reception of the game
It’s no big surprise, Star Trek Voyager – Elite Force delighted the game critics in droves (as well as the article author) and received absolutely deserved high ratings from the local magazine editors – the game is still considered one of the best stars to this day -Trek titles of all time.
The PC player gave Elite Force, ex-editor, a rating of 88 percent in the magazine issue 10/2000 Roland Austinat raved:
“Fascinating! Elite Force even appeals to people like me who don’t otherwise care much about 3D shooters. But the consistent story makes me feel like I’m in the middle of a good TV double episode – hats off to Raven Software.“
Also in the test laboratory GameStar people were very impressed with the quality of the title and the story campaign. Martin Deppe awarded 87 out of 100 rating points and attested to the title:
“This is what 3D action games have to look like in the future: fancy graphics, spectacular levels – but above all, they have to offer as much variety in the future and have a plot that is just as intelligent as Voyager.“
By the way, the game received an expansion pack in 2001 (in addition to the MacOS version), which, among other things, offered a virtual replica of Voyager with additional decks to explore, as well as a successor, Star Trek Elite Force 2. This was released in 2003 and was produced by Ritual Entertainment.
If this review has whetted your appetite for the action classic: Star Trek – Voyager – Elite Force, along with some other Star Trek titles (including the successor), has been available since September 2021 GOG.com purchase digitally.
|Fighting wasn’t always the best option: Elite Force also had stealth passages where you could avoid enemies.|