Post news RSS The successor to Freelancer

Chris Roberts announced Freelancer in 1997 once he was done with his saga Wing Commander. First scheduled for 2000, then reported to 2001, it was finally sold to Microsoft Game Studios who took control of its development because Chris Roberts was unable to finish what he started (Isn't that right, Star Citizen in development since 2011?) and released it in 2003 after having been waited for 6 years. Then Microsoft Game Studios started developing a sequel...

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Chris Roberts announced Freelancer in 1997 once he was done with his saga Wing Commander.

First scheduled for 2000, then reported to 2001, it was finally sold to Microsoft Game Studios who took control of its development because Chris Roberts was unable to finish what he started (Isn't that right, Star Citizen in development since 2011?) and released it in 2003 after having been waited for 6 years.

Then Microsoft Game Studios started developing a sequel to feature in the catalogue of their coming X-Box 360 and named this sequel to Freelancer: Project Lonestar.

Project Lonestar collapsed with Digital Anvil, Chris Roberts' company, in 2006.

However the same year, another company released Darkstar One.

When Microsoft discovered Darkstar One on PC, they were so impressed that they negociated with Ascaron Entertainment, the company who developed it, to port it to X-Box 360 in place of failed Project Lonestar.

In other words, Microsoft, who saved the failing development of Freelancer and released it in 2003, recognized Darkstar One as the worthy successor to Freelancer.

However, even though Ascaron Entertainment provided modding tools for Darkstar One, no modder paid attention to it for some reasons...

Which is why I would like to convince you to mod Darkstar One and therefore I take upon the challenge to make you love it.

My utopist scenario is that my article will start a gold rush of modders into Darkstar One who has been unnoticed despite its potential until now...

So let's do it!

Pictures attract more than words so let's start with pictures, here is a gallery of 77 pictures to treat your eyes:

Pictures gallery

And one more:

Darkstar One and Terran cruiser above civilized planet

Now, because the first fan of a game is the one who created it, I let Daniel Dumont speaks about Darkstar One:

Interview with Daniel Dumont about Darkstar One

Then I add my personal experience and knowledge:

I would like to share with you my personal story about how I discovered Darkstar One absolutely by luck, it is funny.

Once upon a time, my best friend Robert visited me, enthusisastic to show me his last acquisition.

It was Sacred Gold.

Indeed, previously, I introduced to Robert a hack and slash from Ascaron Entertainment, Sacred, of which I owned the Gold edition containing the game Sacred along with its add-on Underworld.

I can't remember how I had acquired this game, because hack and slash are not for me, gameplay which consists in clicking and watching just gets me bored.

Anyway at that time, I was trying to get into it, I still remember playing the vampire knight and exploring Ancaria with my wolf and my bat that I summoned and transforming into my vampire form whenever I encountered hostiles.

Until I grew bored of hack and slash so repetitive gameplay and I uninstalled the game from my PC and went to sell it to game shop (That was before the advent of dematerialization, when games were on discs in boxes with printed manuals.).

Still, I had have time to introduce Robert to it and make him play to it on my PC before I separated ways with it.

And he got into it a lot more than I did, he was hooked!

So when he found it in game shop, he didn't hesitate, he hurried to buy it for himself and show it to me to remind us of good old times.

This is the game he showed to me:

Ascaron Collections vol 2 front cover

Indeed, the edition of Sacred Gold that he acquired was actually a collection of 3 games from Ascaron Entertainment.

You know what's funny? That's that at first, neither he neither I paid attention to this unknown game which was squatting the box of Sacred Gold.

That is, until I gave a look at the back of the box:

Ascaron Collections vol 2 back cover

And then, I was like "It's a space ship game!".

So I enthusiastically opened the box and this is what I saw, left:

Ascaron Collections vol 2 disc 1

And right:

Ascaron Collections vol 2 disc 2

I noticed that Sacred Gold and Port Royale 2 shared one disc while Darkstar One enjoyed its own disc.

Do you see me coming? I asked to Robert if he would mind if I kept the disc that he didn't care about.

Then he extracted the disc of Sacred Gold and Port Royale 2 from the box and he offered me the box, yeah, that's what a good friend does!

So I installed Darkstar One on my PC and I started playing.

I didn't expect to be impressed, coming from an unknown game which was not even good enough to have its own box, which had to squat other games' box, and coming from the creators of Sacred and Port Royale, I didn't expect a master piece.

Wow, how much I was wrong!

Darkstar One put me in my place and blasted my biases assumptions out of me!

Because this game IS a master work!

So Darkstar One, what is it really?

Darkstar One is the name of a space ship unique in the entire galaxy!

Yes because Darkstar One doesn't take place in a sector of the galaxy like Freelancer does, Darkstar One takes place in the entire galaxy!

Not one sector but a twenty sectors, not a fifty solar systems but hundreds of solar systems to explore!

The galaxy of Darkstar One is huge!

And humans are no more alone, there are now 6 species who share the galaxy: humans, mortok, raptor, octo, arrack, and thul.

5 of these 6 species form the Galactic Union while the last one keeps to themselves within their part of the galaxy.

Relationships between species are dynamic.

The Galactic Union Council (GUC) resides on Earth because it was the humans who invited the other species to unite after they all suffered heavy losses in a galactic scale war.

You are Kayron Jarvis, and you just completed your escort pilot training within SimRob Inc, the security company founded by your late father, Simon Jarvis, and his best friend, Robert Altair.

Your father was shot down by thul drones.

Robert summons you in his office in order to introduce you to the Darkstar One, a prototype of new revolutionary space ship, the most advanced in the galaxy, partly organic, implying semi-living, evolutive.

By absorbing artefacts of an ancient civilisation scattered in the entire galaxy, the Darkstar One can evolve into what its pilot chooses.

Every time you acquire enough artefacts to level up your ship, you can choose to upgrade either the hull or the wings or the engines of the Darkstar One, each option making the Darkstar One evolve in a different way to become a different kind of ship.

While in Freelancer, you replace your ship, in Darkstar One, you make your ship evolve.

Along with organic evolutions of the Darkstar One, there are also many equipments customizations.

The Darkstar One is a unique all-in-one customizable ship.

The Darkstar One is also the fastest ship in the galaxy, even faster than the Millenium Falcon!

Indeed, it has a turbo mode which allows it to travel fast within solar systems!

Think about the trade lanes in Freelancer, but the lanes are no more required, you can activate your turbo anywhere and anytime, the only limitation is that it cannot be active in the vicinity of objects such as ships, buildings and asteroids.

Robert entrusts the Darkstar One to you since it was the will of your father and sends you to familiarize with it.

Once the game tutorial done, Robert summons you into his office again, where he reveals to you that he investigated the death of your father because he was an outstanding pilot so he didn't believe that he could be beaten by drones.

He examined the wreck of your father's ship, and found out that its weapons were sabotaged, your father didn't stand a chance...

You snap and you ask Robert why he didn't tell you sooner!?

He answers you that he didn't want to distract you from your training, he was waiting for you to complete it and take hold of the Darkstar One as your father wished.

He continues by telling you that he finally managed to identify the saboteur, and therefore, your father's murderer, who was bribed by the thul.

The culprit is Jack Forrester!

Jack is one of SimRob Inc's best pilots, but unscrupulous.

He vanished after your father's death.

You take the Darkstar One and you go on a quest of vengeance to hunt down Jack Forrester wherever he is hidding!

But your current jump drive is only good enough to jump into solar systems within the sector, you need a more powerful jump drive to be able to reach the next sector...

It is up to you how you gain the credits that you need to buy it.

Escorting, bounty hunting, transporting, trading, mining asteroids for ore, smuggling forbidden goods, spying, piracy, plundering, do whatever you want, but keep in mind that actions cause reactions...

While in Freelancer, everything looked the same because everything was human, in Darkstar One, there are not only humans, there are multiple species each with their own completely different style!

Each specie has their own history, their own culture, their own traits, their own technologies, their own ships of all kinds, their own weapons, their own fighting styles, their own stations, Darkstar One offers a rich diversity!

And each specie is not confined within the borders of their own territory, you can meet ships of any specie anywhere however the ships within a territory are mainly of the species whose territory it is and the stations of each species are within their own territory.

In Darkstar One, every solar system contains at least one station which replaces the cities in Freelancer, we can't land on planets but some missions make us fly the Darkstar One over planets surface and even inside buildings and asteroids!

Some solar systems are occupied by gangs, if you enter into these systems, you are warmly welcomed by an armada of pirates and there are only pirates within the system, until you destroy all of the pirates, then civilian ships start to fly within the system and you feel as if you just revived the system.

There are cops and militaries who patrol systems and fight pirates on sight, if you become wanted in a system, they search the system for you, the station of the system denies you entry as long as you are wanted, and there are bounty hunters who hunt you down across the galaxy, there are transporters, freighters and cargo ships who transport goods from system to system, there are pirates who attack ships who are unfortunate to cross their path, but there are escorters, who protect other ships, there are gang fortresses hideouts heavily guarded to find and destroy, ships enter and exit stations, they jump from system to system, across the galaxy, people go about their business, the galaxy of Darkstar One is dynamic, active, full of life!

Capital ships blowing up, which used to amaze me in Colony Wars: Vengeance in 1998, and which still amaze me in Freespace, are present in Darkstar One, with an extra originality!

Indeed, whereas in other space ship video games, capital ships blow up and vanish without a trace, in Darkstar One, they blow up and their wreck remain drifting in space, that's awesome!

The curb of difficulty is perfectly designed in Darkstar One, I never have to grind to become good enough to continue, I progress naturally along with the story, I appreciate that.

To conclude, there is a good reason why Microsoft, who developed and released Freelancer, recognized Darkstar One as the worthy successor to Freelancer, Darkstar One offers everything Freelancer does, but better, and adds even more.

If you wish to experience it yourself, it is available there:

Come get Darkstar One here!

Well? Did I succeed to make you want to play and mod Darkstar One?


By no means was dso the successor to fl. Modding it is awful and it has not even multiplayer.

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MaximeMartyr Author

DSO replaced PLS, the failed sequel to FL, so why not recognize it as such?
Oh! So you did try to mod it! Could you please share your experience with modding it and explain why modding it is awful so I could understand why it is not modded?
Yes, I noticed that it lacks multiplayer but could it not be added by modding?
And thank you for answering my questions.

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DSO did not replace anything. It was not developed by the same company (digital anvil), not by the same developers (the people working on Freelancer), did not use any assets from Freelancer or project lonestar, is not even playing in the same universe as Freelancer.
With other words it is totally unrelated to Freelancer.
The only thing these games have in common is that they are Arcade space games, but that's it. There are meanwhile many of these games and none of them is in any way related to FL.

And yes, modding DSO sucks because the tools are even worse than the ones for Freelancer and the benefit from investing time into modding DSO simply is not there.

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MaximeMartyr Author

You are right, DSO is unrelated to FL.
Hence I call it the successor, I don't call it the sequel.
DSO and FL are not just two games of the same type, they have a lot in common, didn't you read my presentation to DSO?
And Microsoft, who managed the development of FL, recognized DSO worthy to replace their failed PLS after Digital Anvil failed and was subsequently shut down and their employees relocated into Microsoft Game Studios.
In other words, Digital Anvil's staff was part of Microsoft Game Studios when MGS recognized DSO as worthy to replace PLS.
When MGS, who included Digital Anvil staff, discovered DSO on PC, they were so impressed that they absolutely wanted it on their X-Box 360 as the replacement of PLS.

Really? How many of these games do you know?
Because I know only Privateer, Parkan, X, Freelancer, Darkstar One, Spaceforce, and Elite: Dangerous.
That makes 7.
How many do you consider "many"?
For instance, we have a long way to come close to the hundreds, if not thousands, of FPS, TPS, RTS, TBS, RPG, H&S, P&C, shoot'emup, beat'emup, ryth'emup, platformers, puzzlers, dungeon crawlers, horror, racing, fighting, sports, tycoon, arcade, etc etc...
First person space-ship games are a niche, and open-world first person space-ship games are even less.
7 franchises.
And out of the 7, DSO is the one who has the most in common with FL, came after, and is an upgrade, please read my presentation.
And there IS a game related to FL, did you forget that Freelancer is the sequel to Starlancer?
Chris Robert, when he was an employee at Origin Systems in the 1990s, first created Wing Commander, then Privateer.
So when he founded Digital Anvil in 1996, he first created Starlancer as the successor of Wing Commander in 2000, then Freelancer as the successor of Privateer in 2003.
Well...actually he started developing Freelancer.
Until he ran out of resources because he was too ambitious.
So he sold his society to Microsoft Game Studios, who scaled down his unachievable ambitions for Freelancer and managed to achieve its development and released it in 2003.
Then Chris Roberts has repeated his mistakes.
He raised about 40 000 000 $ from Kickstarter and founded Cloud Imperium Games (just the name of his society speaks volumes of his "imperial" ambitions) and started developing Star Citizen in 2011 with ambitions beyond his reach again.
Many of his backers have requested refund which he is reluctant to grant.
He even managed to raise his funds to 400 000 000 $ through micro-transactions.
Now players pay real money to buy ships.
This is Chris Roberts for you.
Know that Freelancer would not have been possible without Microsoft Game Studios who achieved its development and released it, Chris Roberts lead Digital Anvil to failure.
So when MGS recognizes a worthy successor to Freelancer, this successor is worth be taken seriously.

I am not a modder so could you please develop about modding tools?
Why do you consider FL modding tools bad and how are DSO ones even worse according to you?
DSO developers wanted it to be modded, DSO includes a mod manager and they specifically provided tools to this end so I wonder what went wrong?
I am interested in modders' perspective.
Can't you see the potential of DSO waiting to be tapped?

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You really have a strange view on what happened back then.
Just because DSO was added to the Microsoft XBox makes it a successor to Freelancer? Are you kidding me? Microsoft was nothing more than the provider of hardware and at best a publisher just like Sony is for Playstation and you hardly can claim that Sony is responsible for the development of PS games. These companies take care of hardware and distribution of games created by the real game developers and Ascaron never really had any ties with Microsoft or any Microsoft projects other than having their game ported to a MS console.

And what do these games actually have in common other than being an arcade space game? They have a different universe, different settings, different gameplay mechanics. Everything is different other than the fact that you can fly in space and have mouse controls. That's it.
DSO did not replace FL in any way. The official FL support went on long after DSO was released and I would even claim that today (almost 19 years after FLs release) the playerbase and the community support is significantly stronger than for DSO (or why are you publishing DSO related content in the FL articles here?).
Project Lonestar never was replaced by anything... it was just a small tech demo done by DA, not more not less. There was no official support to begin with from Microsoft.

And to call a game that never was as popular as FL, developed by a company which went bankrupt just 2-3 years later a successor is a far stretch.

What other games exist? Well... just to name a few.

Arvoch Alliance
Aces of the Galaxy
Acamar Rising
The Babylon Project
Battlestar Galactica Online
Black Prophecy
Everspace 2
House of the Dying Sun
Project Sylpheed
Shattered Horizon
Shattered Worlds
SOL: Exodus
Star Assault
Star Conflict
Star Wars: Squadrons
Tarr Chronicles
Dark Horizon
Strike Suit Zero
Wing Commander Arena
Elite Dangerous
Rebel Galaxy
Rebel Galaxy Outlaw
Evochron Alliance
Evochron Renegades
Evochron Legends
Infinite Space
No Man's Sky
Space Engineers
X2: The Threat
X3: Reunion
X3: Terran Conflict
X3: Albion Prelude
X Rebirth
X4: Foundations
Star Citizen

We could debate about Chris Roberts and his role... or we could ignore it completely. I do not like this guy and I do not consider Freelancer a Chris Roberts game. The game many people love even today was not his work but the result of a complete redesign by Jörg Neumann instead. Not even the Freelancer credits mention Chris Roberts in any development role.

My modders perspective would go way too deep for such a discussion here. I know the tools, I now how to use them and I know that they are far from being any good.
IF DSO had a working multiplayer then maybe it would be worth trying to mod and create a community around it. But it is not worth to invest time into something that barely anyone even plays today. Even if you manage to create a good mod you will have problems finding people willing to play it.

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MaximeMartyr Author

Oh, it seems you got me wrong, I didn't say Microsoft developed DSO, I said they chose it to replace PLS, and since PLS was to be the sequel to Freelancer, then logic is that its replacer is FL's successor.
And for having played both FL and DSO, I could really feel how much they have in common and how much DSO was an upgrade, I developed about this in my presentation to DSO.

You keep asking what DSO has in common with FL, so I keep asking did you actually read my presentation to DSO?
I went to details to explain everything they have in common, how DSO was an upgrade, and what original features DSO added which were lacking in FL.
Please read my presentation to DSO, I already answered your recurrent question before you even asked it the first time.
You keep speaking as if two unrelated works have nothing in common, yes, you're right, DSO doesn't take place in the same universe as FL, however you can't be objectively be oblivious to everything they have in common, including their games mechanics.
Most of everything I presented about DSO could be applied to FL, but not as developed as in DSO.
Well, if you sum up a game to "you can fly in space with mouse controls, that's it" then now I get it, it makes sense, now I understand how you can be so oblivious to so many obvious.
I mean, when I wanted to present DSO, I had much more to say than "it's a game where you can fly in space with mouse controls".

Actually not. Microsoft sticks to their doctrine of "5 years support then abandon" so they supported Freelancer for 5 years after release then they abandoned it.
Since DSO came 3 years after FL, FL had only 2 years left of official support and that's it.

On that we agree, DSO's community support can't compete with FL's one, hence why I hope to convince FL's modders to pay attention to DSO because I can imagine what DSO could become if only it was actively supported by skilled modders.
DSO is the best open-world first person space-ship game available to this day.
However it was left untouched since its release.
If it had been as actively modded as FL had been, then you would be playing it right now.
Hence I wish to repair this injustice and convince modders to start a community around DSO.

It was Microsoft who commissioned DA to develop a sequel to FL to feature in the catalogue of their coming X-Box 360.
PLS was a Microsoft's project developed by DA.
Microsoft replaced PLS with DSO because they recognized it as a worthy successor to FL so they decided to port it on X-Box 360 instead of PLS to compensate DA's failure.

We all know that the only one reason why DSO didn't earn the popularity that FL earned and the only reason which keeps FL alive is multiplayer.
The fatal mistake that AE made was to underestimate the importance of multiplayer because if you remove multiplayer from FL then it would have nothing left to compete with DSO.
This is why if modders fixed AE's mistake and added multiplayer to DSO themselves then DSO would grow just as popular as FL if not more.
DSO only needs modders to reveal its latent potential.

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MaximeMartyr Author

My answer exceeds the 5 000 characters limitation so I had to split it in 2 and here is the other half:

You kept repeating that DSO and FL had nothing in common and then when I ask you how many games like them you know, you give me a mostly irrelevant list.
I said "open-world first person space-ship games", not "any space-ship games".
Most of your list is therefore irrelevant as they don't fill these criteria.
Otherwise I would have included:

Wing Commander
The Ur-Quan Masters
Star Wars X-Wing
Colony Wars
Blast Radius
Darklight Conflict
Star Wraith
Tachyon: The Fringe
Vega Strike
EVE Online
Universal Combat
Star Assault
Project Freedom
Tarr Chronicles
Dark Horizon
Starpoint Gemini
Miner Wars 2081
Iron Sky
Sublevel Zero
Cavernous Wastes
Rebel Galaxy

But all of these would have been irrelevant as they are NOT "open-world first-person space-ship games".

Moreover, some titles in your list are mods, not stand-alone games, I thought it was obvious we were talking about games, not mods...
And you included names from my list in your list of "other" games...
Also, you listed several games from the same franchise when I made it clear that my list was of 7 "franchises" otherwise my list would have been:

Wing Commander Privateer
Privateer 2: The Darkening
Parkan: The Imperial Chronicles
X: Beyond the Frontier
X2: The Threat
Parkan 2
X3: Reunion
Darkstar One
Spaceforce: Rogue Universe
X3: Terran Conflict
X3: Albion Prelude
X Rebirth
X Rebirth: The Teladi Outpost
Elite: Dangerous
X Rebirth: Home of Light
X4: Foundations
X4: Split Vendetta
X4: Cradle of Humanity
X3: Farnham's Legacy

But this list would have been redundant because most of these games are part of a series, all of this list contains only 7 franchises, 7 universes.
And even if I did list every game from every series, that makes 21, not exactly what I call "many".
If you include every game which contains space-ships then sure, there are many of all kinds.
However you were asking for games like FL, did you not?
And what is FL?
It is an "open-world first-person space-ship game".
"open-world" as in "you are free to go wherever you want and do whatever you want" and "first-person space-ship" as in "you pilot a space-ship and you see the universe from your cockpit".
That is the kind of games that FL is.
And I know only 7 franchises of this kind:

1) From 1993 to 1996, Privateer, which is the ancestor of Freelancer;
2) From 1997 to 2005, the trilogy Parkan, which is an amazing first-person game franchise which allows you to exit your cockpit and switch to first-person shooter, you can explore your ship, you can dock other ships and explore them on foot, you can even dock to enemy ships right in the heat of battle and destroy their crew on foot and loot them before you come back to your cockpit and you finish off the ship, you can also land on planets, exit your ship, explore colonies, trade with friendly ones, invade enemies ones, and even build your own;
3) From 1999 to keep going, the longest of these franchises, X, which is more of a successor to Elite than Privateer as in it focuses more on trade than dogfight;
4) In 2003, Freelancer, which is the successor to Privateer;
5) In 2006, Darkstar One, which I consider the successor to Freelancer which needs modders to support it;
6) In 2007, Spaceforce: Rogue Universe, which is too much of a sand-box to my liking;
7) In 2015, Elite: Dangerous, which is...well, Elite.

They are all that we have for open-world first-person space-ship games.
Oh and I don't include Star Citizen because I don't care about unfinished projects doomed to failures because of unreasonable leaders who stubbornly try to bite far more than they could possibly chew.

Ah, so we agree after all, multiplayer is all that it would take for DSO to grow a community, DSO just needs some modders inspired and pumped to add multiplayer to it, that's why I want to inspire you modders and...well...I won't say that I want to pump you modders, that would be weird, but you get the idea. :-3
If I succeed to motivate modders to add multiplayer to DSO then that would be it, that all it would take to start a community around DSO and it really is worth it, you only need to imagine what it could become then you would see what I see and try to achieve here.

We agree that DSO just needs multiplayer to get started so what about it? Do you think you could add it?

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I said it before and I will say it again. DSO did NOT replace anything FL related. Not FL itself and not project lonestar (which was not even a real thing as it as nothing but a stupid cheap tech demo done by some DA employees waiting for their dev studio being closed or moved.
You can not be a replacement for something that did not even exist. There was no official project... and it also never was Microsoft stepping in with the wish "oh this DSO could be a replacement".
If you want to tell fairy tales about such stuff... cool... but don't expect people to believe that crap.

You said "open-world first person space-ship games"? Wait... I am scrolling up.
No you did not.
This being put aside the list I have provided contains plenty of open-world space games that you did not have on your list. And to get it totally right, let me correct you once more. Freelancer is no "first person" game, the primary flight mode is 3rd person.

And yes, I did read your presentation. I just do not agree with it in many ways.
The only thing DSO was better in were the graphics (which is no surprise considering that there were 3 years between the games release dates and therefore even different uses of graphic APIs). Everything else was either unspectacular equal or even a downgrade to FL. The gameplay was slow and boring, the AI even worse than in FL, no multiplayer at all... just to name a few.
You think that modders can add multiplayer to DSO? Are you serious? That is not how modding works. It is easier to create a whole new game than to "mod" multiplayer into it.

The list I have provided does contain standalone games. What you call mods was released as standalone game... not as mod. Therefore the list is valid the way I posted it.
And to correct you once more... You did not make clear that you where talking "franchises", you did specifically ask me for "games". Scroll up and read it yourself. Don't twist the stuff that was written to suit your needs.

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MaximeMartyr Author

Well, maybe I got carried away about PLS and DSO replacing it because it was upgraded and ported to X-Box 360 4 years after its release on PC so I thought AE did not plan to release it on X-Box since it was ported only 4 years later, which made me think that it was Microsoft who requested it to be ported on their console, it might be an wrong assumption from me but it is a logical deduction, not an attempt to tell fairy tales, I apologize if I was wrong.

I also scrolled up to check and I really did write "open-world first-person space-ship games", let me quote the paragraph where I said it:
"Really? How many of these games do you know?
Because I know only Privateer, Parkan, X, Freelancer, Darkstar One, Spaceforce, and Elite: Dangerous.
That makes 7.
How many do you consider "many"?
For instance, we have a long way to come close to the hundreds, if not thousands, of FPS, TPS, RTS, TBS, RPG, H&S, P&C, shoot'emup, beat'emup, ryth'emup, platformers, puzzlers, dungeon crawlers, horror, racing, fighting, sports, tycoon, arcade, etc etc...
First person space-ship games are a niche, and open-world first person space-ship games are even less.
7 franchises."

I distinct 2 types of first-person space-ship games: linear and open-world.
Linear are the kind of Wing Commander or Starlancer or Freespace for examples where the games are split into missions, you take off from the base, you complete your mission, then you return to the base, you don't get free time, there is nothing to do outside the missions.
Open-world are the kind of Privateer or Freelancer or Darkstar One for examples where you are free to travel, explore and do as you please.

It is up to the player if they want to be in the cockpit or outside their ship, Freelancer offers both options so it is both first-person and third-person hence I include it in my first-person list just like I could include it in a third-person list as well.

So which games from your list are games where you pilot a space-ship from the cockpit in open-world?

"The gameplay was slow and boring?"
I read many complaints from Freelancer's players who said just that, "outside of the trade lanes, moving takes ages", modders had to develop a mod to speed up the ships because it was "slow and boring" whereas Darkstar One features a turbo mode which makes even the trade lanes useless with the advantage that you can speed up anywhere, not only on specific paths.
Freelancer's AI consists in gang-banging the player with armadas
of ships, all ships fight the same way, whereas in Darkstar One, each ship features its own fighting style and you need to adapt your own style to each opponent.
DSO lacks multiplayer, on that we agree, hence I am trying to find a solution to fix this issue to start an active community and makes it worth modding and expanding.
Is it not possible to add the ability for multiple players to join the same galaxy on a server?

The Babylon Project is a Freespace's total conversion mod, it cannot stand alone without Freespace, hence I include it in Freespace, not as a standalone game, the same goes for Shattered Worlds which is a Freelancer's mod.

You're right, I indeed asked you for "games", however I then listed "7 franchises", did I not?
I did not list every games from each franchise, I only listed franchises, so I thought it was obvious that I wanted a list of franchises the same way I made one, was it not?
I mean, if I wanted a list of every games from every franchises, then I would have made one myself, don't you think?

Anyway this is not the point of my initiative here therefore I don't think it is worth arguing for, the only important question is:
Is it possible to just add the ability for multiple players to join the same galaxy on a server for starters? What would it take to do it?

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Hey, Thanks for the Heads up, Been looking for another Open World Space Sim like Freelancer and this may be it...Much appreciated

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MaximeMartyr Author

You're most welcome. ;-)

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MaximeMartyr Author

Oh! Someone actually posted some mods for Darkstar One a few months after I asked for it, thanks ZachFett!

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