Sword of the Stars – The Pit


Some of you may be familiar with the Sword of the Stars franchise.  Sots I & II were 4X style strategy games.  I never really got into them, so I don’t know much about the background of the Sots-verse.

SOTS – The Pit, on the other hand, is an old school turn-based, rogue-style dungeon crawler.  Yes, it’s kind of a strange progression for the series, but it works.  The graphics aren’t much to look at, but the gameplay is very addictive.  Well, it is as long as you like rogue-type games.

The game is tough and you’ll die frequently, so the goal isn’t so much to get to the end (sub-level 30 of The Pit) in the first play through.  Rather, the goal is to see how far you can get before you die, hopefully going a little further each time.

Along the way there will be containers to search (for vital supplies), locks to pick, traps to disarm, equipment to repair and crafting stations to make stuff.  Oh, and monsters to fight.  Lots and lots of monsters.  You get experience and level up for doing all that stuff (which is part of the addictive nature of the gameplay).

Along with a health tracker, you also have food.  Food is sort of a timing mechanism, so you don’t sit around resting after every battle.  And while it can be frustrating to die just because you can’t find any food, it also forces you to make some strategic decisions, too.

Some of the loot you find are components which may be combined at crafting stations (either cookers, for food, or lab stations, for most other stuff).  You can make weapons, armor, better food, medicines, all kinds of things.  Unfortunately, you start off only knowing the recipe for a Sotswich, so you’ll have to experiment to discover valid recipes.  There are also data stations where you can decrypt messages for recipes, as well (or you can cheat, like me, and go to the forums to get them).  Fortunately, when you discover a recipe it stays in your database, so you can access it in future games.

Another nice thing about the game, it’s dirt cheap; $9.99 on Steam, a bargain compared to the $50-60 most games charge these days (and a steal considering all the time I’ve put into it).  You can click the link above to their website for more details.


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