(Observer (UK) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Space combat games used to be a hugely popular genre, but they've drifted into the abyss of late. Strike Suit, originally a Kickstarter-funded PC title, sets out to bring back the glory days amid the stars. Wearing its influences heavily - right down to the Battlestar Galactica-infused backing music - it's a tale of dissident Earth colonies taking on their home planet in intergalactic warfare.
You play as a mute pilot named Adams, slap bang in the middle of the conflict, with backstory fed to you via the radio. The twist is Adams's transforming ship - one minute a nimble if underpowered spacecraft, the next a humanoid mech with massive guns that can take on seemingly unbeatable odds. Mission types vary from protect to destroy, and if not offering much variety through the main campaign and the Heroes of the Fleet expansion, they provide a stern test, with various challenges, such as eliminating all missiles, to be completed in order to unlock ship upgrades.
The PC version was criticised for its unforgiving difficulty, and although checkpoints are more frequent now, it's still no cakewalk - no bad thing if you fancy spending a few hours revelling in the zero-gravity pyrotechnics. Toby Moses
(c) 2014 Guardian Newspapers Limited.