Definitely a classic, no one would dare deny that. To me it is more. My first experience with Star Control 2
literally changed me, giving me a greater appreciation for science fiction
and introducing me to a new kind of humour. It is truly an awesome game. It's one of those things where everything just works
, and the final product is more than the sum of its parts. The story, the music, the comedy, the gameplay, all bang-on
At times Star Control 2 is very much an interactive book. A choose-your-own-adventure, if you will, but way more complex and fun. It's quite successful at making you feel in control of things; the decisions you make can and will change the universe. But this is only half of the game. The other important part is the hyper melee, the ship-to-ship space battles. There's strategy here. Pulling off that successful gravity whip, bringing the previously invincible Chmmr Avatar within firing range of your Kzer-za Dreadnought, and then pulverizing it with blast after blast of undodgeable (because you're that good) flaming space death. It gives you that feeling of accomplishment and rightness in the pit of your stomach. Or, you fail and get repeatedly slammed into the planet surface by the Avatar's tractor beam, and must sit mostly helpless while the enemy slowly makes its way over and cuts you in half with its laser, execution style, royally pissing you off.
The music. Egad! The music! So awesome. It totally makes the game, setting the mood for each scene and always complementing the dialogue. How creepy is the damned VUX theme? It seriously creeps me out to listen to it. And the Ur-Quan Kohr-Ah music, it just unsettles you. You lose all hope. When the monstrous catterpillars talk trash to you, you're saying to yourself, "Garsh, they're right. I'm toast. I haven't got a snowflake's chance in Satan's hell." The Orz theme, of course, is hilarious. I'm going to demand that it's played at my funeral; I'll put it as a condition in my will or something. Another cool piece is the background for normal space. There's nothing much to it, just the sort-of quiet lonely noises you might hear in space if sound actually worked there. But it still makes you feel small. I'd go on, but I don't have the adjectives and would start repeating myself. Anyways, it's fantastic.
The setting is standard science fiction fare. I won't get into that, or the story, except to say that it is very well done. If you have never played any Star Control games before, it would probably be best to not know much before starting. But please, you must give it a shot. Lie, cheat, steal, you'll likely do at least one of these things since you can't buy it in stores anymore, but it's worth it. Remember to support Toys for Bob.