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Master of Orion reboot hands-on: A PC gaming classic dragged into the modern era

Hayden Dingman | June 18, 2015
"It is a legend. We need to get it right," says Wargaming CEO Victor Kislyi in reference to the company's upcoming Master of Orion remake/reboot/sequel. And he's not wrong. Master of Orion is one of those hallowed PC games--a 4X title so ahead of its time that it'sstill referenced as one of the greatest in the genre, twenty years later. Even by us.

But it's honestly hard--almost impossible--to know. With Master of Orion today I got a brief demo of a not-so-brief game, and picking up on the subtle differences between 4X games is difficult even in longterm play, let alone over such a short timespan.

For now, my feeling about Master of Orion is it's simply "another space 4X game"--lovingly updated, but entering into a niche that's gotten pretty crowded lately. It is, of course, "another space 4X game" with the benefit of a twenty-year legacy and name, but even so that might not be enough. Being faithful to a legend doesn't just mean recreating it for a new audience--it means pushing it forward. I'm convinced Wargaming has done that graphically. Now I'm waiting to see whether they've also done that from a mechanics perspective.

 

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