Masterplay Publishing, 1988
MS-DOS 和 Apple IIGS
Masterplay Publishing, 1988
MS-DOS and Apple IIGS
最早的一批 CRPG（电脑角色扮演游戏）诞生于七十年代，这些游戏的诞生起初只是为了一个简单的目的：充分利用电脑算力——要知道，TRPG（桌上角色扮演游戏）中充斥着规则判断、数值和概率计算，而电脑在这方面远胜人脑，所以何不物尽其用呢？ 而 Andrew Greenberg （《巫术》的制作者之一）所制作的《星际传说》无疑是这一理念的进一步体现。
The very first computer RPGs, created way back in the 70s, were born out of a simple realisation: tabletop RPGs are full of rules, numbers and percentages, and a computer is much better at keeping track of those than a human being. Star Saga: One, by Andrew Greenberg – one of the Wizardry creators – is that idea taken one step further.
《星际传说》混合了 CRPG、棋盘游戏和 CYOA（自选历险）。游戏需要一到六名玩家在大地图上经历一场“太空歌剧”式冒险。规则判定什么的全交给电脑就行，这位“主持人”既可靠而且随叫随到。
玩家将每回合的行动指令输入电脑，电脑将显示对应手册上相关文本的编号，以及当前选择的结果和可用选项。游戏每回合可分几个阶段，允许玩家进行多种行动，比如与 NPC 对话或交易燃料和资源。电脑将会追踪整个游戏过程，并处理一些游戏中简单的基于道具的战斗。
这是一个出色的点子，多亏了电脑，才让这款游戏的内容深度是所有 CYOA 游戏书所无法比拟的，游戏的小册子内容有趣，文笔优美。每颗新的星球和遭遇都是独一无二的，这点足以甩当时的 CRPG 好几条街。遗憾的是，当时的技术还不到位。从电脑到小册子再到地图的来回操作是缓慢而笨拙的，而完成你的目标则需要太长的时间，一次游戏可以持续数周，甚至数月之久。
尽管出师不利，但续作《星际传说：2 - 克拉特兰的威胁（Star Saga: Two - The Clathran Menace）》仍于 1989 年发售，延续了上部六主角的故事。虽然游戏曾计划以三部曲的形式推出，但由于销量不佳导致游戏结局草草收场。
从现在的角度来看这可能有些搞笑，毕竟手册、地图以及输入指令什么的靠一个手机 App 就可以轻松解决。而作为一个大胆的游戏，《星际传奇》最大的缺陷就是远远领先于它的时代。
The game can be described as a mix of CRPG, boardgame and Choose Your Own Adventure book. It's a space opera to be played by 1-6 players on a large map, with all the rules being handled by the computer – a reliable and always available Game Master.
You start by selecting one of six pre-made characters, each with their own illustrated booklet that richly describes their background, starting resources and secret motivations – such as finding an item and taking it back home. You then open the sector map and choose a planet to visit in search of your goals.
Each turn, players input their actions into the computer, which will reply with the number of a text to be read on the printed booklets, showing the outcome of their choices and the options now available. A single turn has several phases, allowing for multiple actions, such as talking to NPCs or trading fuel and resources. The computer will keep track of all these, as well as handle Star Saga's simple item-based combat.
It's a clever concept. Thanks to the computer, the game has a depth that no CYOA book can match, while the printed booklets allow for funny, well-written text that was miles ahead of any CRPG of the time, making every new planet and encounter feel unique. Sadly, the technology wasn't there yet. The back-and-forth from the PC to the booklets to the map is slow and awkward, while completing your objectives takes far too long one playthrough can last weeks, or even months!
The game still had a sequel, Star Saga: Two - The Clathran Menace (1989), which continued the story of the six main characters. In fact, the series was planned as a trilogy, but poor sales ended it prematurely.
From today's perspective, it's almost absurd how all these booklets, maps and inputs could easily be handled by a single phone app. A bold game, Star Saga's biggest flaw was to be way ahead of its time.