If it wasn’t for Freelancer I would never have probably heard about the X series as being a little German studio they seem to go under the radar a bit. One of my mates who got me on to Freelancer in 2003 said “hey I found a game series just like it” and that was it, I was an addict lol. God knows how many hours I’ve put into the X series over the last 15 years.. and I’m still way behind in them due to my OCD urge to do and see everything haha! These days every man and his dog is making Freelancer like games but back in the 2000s and early 2010s there wasn’t that much out there so the X series (particularly X2 and X3) was my way of dealing with Freelancer withdrawal symptoms lol. Sure they didn’t have the great story and awesome planet landings Freelancer had but the ships and planets were gorgeous and the game universes huge. Being able to become a business mogul and build my own empire of stations and fleets of capital ships to whoops ass with was particularly fun and addictive for me. I’ve even been reading the X novels over the years to immerse myself in their universe further (although I’m gonna get stuck soon as they’re not all translated to English haha).
Well anyway those who are familiar with X games will also know that pretty much every game they release is practically a friggin disaster at launch lol with endless bugs and broken or missing features. Then rather amazingly unlike most studios they then spend years releasing patches and addons to the games until after around 2 or so years the game is friggin awesome lmao! Sure enough X4 has followed that path and they recently released the first addon for X4 Split Vandetta which appears to be quite an improvement over the messy vanilla release. No doubt they’ll be more coming too over the next few years. Presumably Egosoft must make their money back through addons as I don’t know how those guys survive the bad first releases and somehow keep going. I think the first X game came out in 1999 so its over 20 years now haha.
Has anywhere here played X4 yet? I don’t have it yet as I’ve been holding out of a physical collectors release (yeah I’m one of those old weirdos lol) which is probably not going to happen as they’ve said they can’t afford it these days sadly but nevertheless I’ve been drooling over their videos lately to build some anticipation for the inevitable digital only purchase lol. I like how you can walk around the bridge of your capital ships while station construction looks way more advanced than previous games with you putting together all the modules yourself into whatever custom setup you want. Then of course you can walk around them and hire staff and mercs etc.
Trailer for the new Split addon looks cool…
And now they’re doing a 6 part video series talking about each aspect of the game.. my god does the latest version look more complicated than ever! There’s just SO MUCH you can do, customize and tinker with.
Building – this is the kind of customizable station building I dreamed of while playing earlier X games and Freelancer.
Think (Missions) – The mission management system in X3 Terran Conflict was a huge upgrade from X3 Reunion & previous games. Every time I’d play those older game sifting through endless cr*ppy news about spawnling donations and people laying eggs etc trying to find decent missions I’d find myself screaming “WHY DON’T THEY DO THINGS LIKE FREELANCER” lol and thankfully Egosoft eventually listened. The X4 version looks similar to the excellent X3TC one but just better organised and with more variety which is fine by me lol!
Explore – the exploring spooky derelicts part looked cool and reminds me of the stuff Star Citizen are toying with, except this game is actually finished haha (well sort of lol).
Strategy – this was one of my favourite things about X3 Reunion onwards (X1-2 it was much harder due to more simplistic system views).. sometimes I would park my ship for days and not go anywhere and just spend my entire playing time in the system views directing my fleets, managing resources, and building stations just like a game of Sins of a Solar Empire.