The Captain is a gorgeous, sci-fi point-and-click adventure game that blends aspects of western roleplaying games with the resource collection and crew management of strategy games. We previously covered an earlier Alpha build of The Captain on Alpha Beta Gamer, and playing through the updated demo, it’s clear that the game has come a long way since our initial review.
In The Captain, you play as Captain Welmu aboard a ship stranded forty lightyears away from home (a noticeably shortened timeframe from the game’s original 100 lightyears). Navigating your way back through space is no mean feat: you’ll need to choose when and how you interact with the aliens blocking your trajectory, how you upgrade your ship, and how you train your crew. Each decision can ripple out through your playthrough, introducing new obstacles or providing you with helpful tools on your journey.
The gameplay of The Captain’s demo is split into two main components: navigating traditional point-and-click style puzzles, and space travel and resource collection via the starmap. The demo has several different planets to explore, each with its own unique inhabitants and mini adventures for you to complete. While there are a few bits of grammatical weirdness and generally awkward dialogue, the writing in The Captain is solid, defining characters and their archetypes without too much fuss. However, the harvesting mechanic is a little tedious, as you will be required to click the “Harvest” button once per harvesting session, which can mean many clicks when collecting relatively small quantities of resources. The developers might do well to consider adding the option to harvest multiple times to fix this issue.
The Captain’s development team recently launched a Kickstarter campaign to help fund additional content for the game’s eventual release in late Q1 2017. Their ask of kr300,000 (approximately $37000 USD) will go to building more mini adventures, adding complexity to the game’s harvesting mechanics, introducing space battles, and implementing a trade system. If you’re looking to experience an episodic narrative like that of Star Trek, head on over to The Captain’s Kickstarter and give them your support.