As many reviews go, you go into the game with an understanding of the game or the history behind it. This one I went in blind, no clue what the game held of its origin. I didn’t even know this was the third game in the series, however, I gave it the full potential I could and I was pleasantly surprised. Manticore: Galaxy on Fire is actually a mobile port of Galaxy on Fire 3 – Manticore and a very good port at that. Many games get do get ported over from mobiles to PC and sometimes consoles and are very poor, buggy, glitchy whatever you call it but Manticore was a very good port, never came across any major issues. So far so good.
The game begins with you in a ship straight away, right into the action which I like. The training is short and sweet but it covers the basics that are needed. The first bit, take down 2 ships, very easy to pick up. You have target assist letting you know the location and best place to shoot. We will come back to this later when we discuss the gameplay. There are 3 training missions you go through which is still part of the story and not just a few training missions before the game actually starts so that a plus. The third mission was quite tough. You fight a pirate leader in the second training mission which was quite easy, took him down pretty much straight away but the third mission took some doing and even got me. If it weren’t for the assist I’d of died a good few times. Once these are done you are pretty much free to roam around as much as you want. There are 35 missions in total that are quite enjoyable, the story was ok, not the greatest but bear in mind this is a port from a mobile game. You are able to explore galaxies also that comes with a percentage amount that shows how much is explored.
You begin as a pilot that is being recruited into the Manticore to investigate an issue. You’re pretty much space police. During your mission to investigate this issue, you come across a lot of mercenaries and space pirates. These are your main targets. The story was an ok length. I found it more capable to be a portable game rather than docked. I believe this was because of it being quite a successful mobile game, with this being a port. It’s not terribly long to sit there for a good session but enough to finish if you’re on a lengthy journey like myself coming back and forth from the office. I got the code yesterday, I played a bit at the office, on the bus home which took about an hour and played for another 2 hours today. In total about 4-5 hours you could play it from beginning to end.
For a game that began out as a mobile game, it’s actually really well made, even before the port. The game is made by well-known games company Deep Silver so I expect standards of this, but for a mobile game to be this good a quality is actually nice to see. The graphics are good, the story was ok. The only let down for me was the voice acting. I wasn’t expecting some sort of BAFTA award but it was a bit cheesy from time to time and you could tell where they cut the audio files to try and match up. Not too great.
There is not a lot of variety in terms of customization. There are a few ships you can purchase later down the line and additional weaponry you can add to your arsenal. If you do everything you can pretty much afford the best not so far into the game. Upgrading the weapons you purchase is a bonus also. But for a game like this, I would like to see some more customization.
The gameplay is good but can be really easy. If you upgraded the right weapons you’re honestly OP. The assist aim makes it so easy. It doesn’t just tell you the location but semi-locks on to your target as well. It’s not a small assist either. You shoot anywhere in this circle you’re going to hit the ship that is flying. I couldn’t find a way to turn this off and this was on the normal setting. It made it just too easy at times. There were times during a fight that bullets were doing little to no damage but still, the assist makes yourself OP. One way on fixing this is making the assist smaller and not a lock on in there either, just more ‘shoot here and you hit the target’ type assist. The flying is quite simple, no real over the top type controls like Elite: Dangerous but merely left analog controls direction and the right analog speeds you up and slow down. Right trigger will shoot and Right Bumper will change your weapon. That is pretty much it. Easy to pick up.
Overall, not a bad game. Worth the value that you pay for it $19.99/£17.99. It is eShop only. The story is ok, gameplay is its best feature it has. Let down would be the voice acting but it did start out as a mobile game. Possibly the best space game on the Switch so far also hoPleasantlyasently surprised me for what it was.