XÃ‚Â²: THE THREAT follows on from the commercial success X: BEYOND THE FRONTIER. Released in September 1999, the original full priced game sold almost 200,000 copies across Europe. The game was highly acclaimed by specialist press and is still fondly remembered four years after its original release. XÃ‚Â²: THE THREAT is now set to redefine the space-trading genre.
Though staying true to its predecessor, what makes XÃ‚Â²: THE THREAT so unique is the game's freedom of exploration and uninhibited style of game play. A first person space experience, XÃ‚Â²: THE THREAT immerses the player in a dynamic, living, breathing universe, where every event and action has 'cause and effect' upon the entire gaming universe. Discover new worlds and life forms across countless sectors of space, players can become either a trader, bounty hunter, pirate, miner or a strategic combination of them all. The choice of how the player experiences the XÃ‚Â² universe is up to them.
As the player 'lives out' their life in the XÃ‚Â² universe, they will become embroiled in a story of adventure - of great battles and heroic deeds, of pain and sacrifice, pitted against a terrible foe set upon universal annihilation. Players are free to pursue the story missions or alternately attempt the multitude of smaller missions that do not affect the main storyline. Via a bulletin board system, the player is assigned all manner of tasks, from passenger / freight cargo runs to 'search and destroy' missions that involve tracking a fugitive across many sectors.
Space is littered with factories producing all manner of goods. Each factory requires one or more resource and they will send their own freight ships to acquire them, calculating the best possible price, distance and quantity. Prices fluctuate according to local availably and demand, just as they do in real life. This provides further strategic depth. To really become the intergalactic business mogul, players can acquire their very own factories and deploy these wherever they see fit. These will then automatically fetch resource and manufacture goods. Gone are the days of long haul freight runs, which reward the gamer with just a handful of credits.
It is possible to capture other ships, if the pilot can be convinced to bail out. These ships then become another vessel within the player's roster and can be sold if extra capital is required. However, more 'combatant' orientated commanders will often take advantage of the extra hardware for more aggressive means.
A fleet of ships at the player's disposal can be issued a variety of commands. With over 70 interactive ships, players may own as many as they like at any one time. Some types may be better suited for certain missions than others; there are cargo ships, fighter ships of varying size, large transports, passenger liners, corvettes, battleships and carriers. Some ships even have the ability to carry smaller ships within them. With a vessel at over two kilometres in length to command, players can soon become a force to be reckoned with.
Taking advantage of the latest graphics cards capabilities, EGOSOFT has pushed the game's graphical boundaries to the limit in order to create the most visually detailed universe ever seen. Utilising the latest DirectX coding, the 3D engine features many spectacular visual effects including volumetric Nebulae (gas clouds) that have real game play impact (players can hide from pursuing enemies within these dense clouds). Dynamic DP3 bump mapping provides unprecedented levels of detail, whilst objects cast real dynamic 3D shadows. The built-in Automatic Quality Control (AQC) system adjusts the visual quality, to achieve the highest possible frame rates on any supported system. So eye catching are the graphics, players might think they are watching the latest CGI sci-fi epic from Hollywood!
XÃ‚Â²: THE THREAT provides game players a brand new dimension to the space trading / combat sim genre. Not only will the graphical splendour of the game blow them away, but also after even a short period of play, they will realise that they have truly entered a 'real' universe, in which to 'live' their space faring life, however they choose.
* Trade commodities between space stations, become a bounty hunter closing in for the next highly profitable kill, prey on other traders as a pirate by stealing cargo or even whole ships, mine asteroids for profit, or build your empire on the back of all these trades.
* Large, dynamic universe in which to interact and explore. Comprising a heart thumping freeform storyline, interspersed with dozens of interlinked missions and multiple smaller stand-alone paying jobs.
* State of the art graphics engine, utilising the latest DirectX features such as vertexshading, DP3 bump mapping & volumetric shadows & fog effects.
* Trade in raw materials or finished manufactured goods, all within a dynamic evolving economy. Fly the freighters themselves, or their support combat craft, or just sit back and tell them what to do, the choice is yours.
* Over 70 ships to buy and fly, including fighters, cargo ships, transports, passenger liners, corvettes, battleships and carriers (one is over a mile long)! Own and upgrade as many as you like, or can afford, even create an armada of ships and command each either from the helm or from afar.
* Employ a myriad of offensive weaponry, including lasers, missiles, mines, & remote droids. But don't forget the array of defensive options available, including shields, self-repairing hulls, & intercept rockets!