Preview: Everspace 2 – Early Access Prototype

EVERSPACE 2 Drake: Gang Wars

Being a fan of space-faring games for a long time, Everspace 2 was on my must-play list ever since it was announced. Recently, I got lucky and managed to secure access to an Early Access Prototype of Everspace 2. I never played the first Everspace so the second game in the franchise sparked my interest even more because only good titles receive a sequel so if we are getting Everspace 2, it means that Everspace was good and now I’ve tried the Early Access Prototype of Everspace 2, I am thinking of playing Everspace as well since the second part is a direct sequel of the first game and I would love to know the backstory of the game. This is our preview of an Early Access Prototype of Everspace 2.

Since this is a very early prototype, it is missing most of the features so instead of a proper preview, I’ve decided to change my format of previews and I will be sharing my very experience of playing the game rather than going in detail about different aspects of the game. The full version of the game will come with a lot more features and there is a chance that some of the features currently present in the build might be removed from the game as well. The next build for Everspace will be its Early Access build and it comes with a lot more content than this particular build. Everspace 2 begins right at your homebase where you start from picking your spaceship before venturing out in the space on your epic journey.

Preview Everspace 2

I had the option of choosing and flying three different and unique spaceships. There was a Sentinel class ship, an Assault Fighter, and an Interceptor, each of them pertaining to different needs and roles. The Sentinel was my favorite among the three although it was the slowest one out of the bunch. The Interceptor class excels at aerial combat and conventional warfare as its main focus is combat. The Assault Fighter class excels at chasing down and taking down enemy ships with its onboard EMP generator. Despite having three ships at my disposal and being able to switch between the three at any time from my Homebase, I played mostly with the Sentinel class because it just suited well to my playstyle and I liked how it looked like a proper spaceship.

Modifying these ships is extremely convenient in Everspace 2. You can find better modules and weapons both by exploring the universe or by purchasing them from different shops around key locations in each galaxy. This particular prototype had a limited number of weapons and modifications however I am pretty sure that the full game and even the Early Access build will come with tons of more content. As far as I am concerned, I was pretty happy with the number of weapons I found during my playthrough. At the start of my journey, I was quickly given a brief tutorial of the flight and combat controls before I had to fight a small unit of space outlaws. Given they were level 1, I emerged victorious and the fight was a good start to understanding how the game works out.

After finishing up with them, I decided to explore the sector Ceto IV where my Homebase was located. I managed to find some more outlaws loitering around their small base with some base defenses. After getting rid of them and collecting a few containers lying here and there, I decided to warp to the next sector Ceto II which was clearly marked as ‘Outlaw Turf’. Overconfident of my earlier victories against the Outlaws, I decided to visit the sector anyway with my armor plating nearly gone and with standard weapons. Pressing C initiated the space jump sequence and as soon as my boosters were charged, I managed to enter hyperspeed where I had the option to enable auto-pilot towards Ceto II or skip traveling all-together. Since this was my first time, I decided to sit through the warp, however, nothing much happened during this warp since the sector was quite close to my current sector.

After appearing in Ceto II, I was greeted with some debris here and there and a small shop in the middle of all the debris. It was guarded by some G&B fighters however there was a lot of Outlaw activity in this area. After finding some stranded people in the space, I decided to help them however I was quickly intercepted by a large platoon of outlaws and it was at this time that I started regretting coming to a hostile sector. I tried everything with my weapons and after exhausting all my repair drones, secondary weapons, and armor plates, I was left with no choice but to flee the sector. I was too weak at this point to tackle them all at once. A quick glance at the map showed me the next accessible planet Sobek I which happened to be a trading station. I do not remember correctly but I think the Outlaws destroyed my ship nearly 8 times before I decided to flee the sector. The game did not punish me too harshly for dying and I was respawned in the same area to die again but I think that the main game will have some sort of penalty for dying so much because ultimately I was starting to feel uneasy about how much I was dying in a game that belonged to a genre that I love playing.

Preview Everspace 2

Cutting the story short, I managed to flee from the outlaws using my ship’s boost which gives you a quick burst of speed for a short time before running out, and then it recharges again. Similar to the boost, my shields recharged however my health was low and my armor plating was nowhere to be seen. I managed to escape and soon I activated my Cruise Drive to quickly run away from them. Once at a safe distance, I triggered my Jump Drive and soon I was on my way towards Sobek I. I decided to once again sit through the fast travel sequence but this time I was not so lucky. Around halfway, I triggered some Outlaw traps and I was pulled out of my warp. I was once again facing some Outlaws in the middle of nowhere. However, this time around, I managed to defeat them easily since there were no outlaw base defenses around. After getting rid of them, I quickly resumed my warp and soon I was at Sobek I.

After arriving at Sobek I, I did a quick sweep of the sector and managed to find some really cool weapons here. I managed to find a Rail Gun and an Energy Blaster for my Sentinel Class ship which greatly increased my ability to deal damage. I was also leveling up as I killed some outlaws here terrorizing the G&B Trading Station. I then headed towards the trading station and docked there. Refilled by secondary weapons and armor plates. I also purchased some repair drones and sold off some of the random items that I found during my short exploration sessions. These components might have a use in the full game for crafting however at this point, I did not find any use for them so I simply sold them for some extra money. I also got a mission here where I had to fix a few leaks and then fight some outlaws. All in all, I got some XP, leveled up, made some money and my ship was good as new.

Instead of heading back towards the Outlaw Turf, I decided to move further to Tycho I which was located right at the center of the system and right next to the main sun Ceto of the system. The journey was quick since I decided to use fast travel and skip the travel sequence. Upon entry to the sector, I was greeted with a huge white star in the middle of my screen and a lot of debris scattered here and there with a small mining facility located there. While heading towards the mining facility, I received a transmission which turned out to be some scientists needing some help with the alignment of their solar arrays. After the easy task, the scientists refused to pay the full amount however there was no conflict as they went away after paying a short sum of amount and blaming the bad location. Back towards the mining facility, I destroyed some more outlaws, collected resources, and explored some exploded ruins of probably another mining station. I found some power sources but did not really found out what were they used for. I found some green containers as well which exploded and spread toxic green goo all over the area. At this point, I was feeling quite comfortable with my position. I had decent weapons, I was chopping through every outlaw enemy and I even found and activated an outlaw drone which helped me out in combat. It, however, died an honorable death by an outlaw mine which I accidentally triggered. However, I went to the mining facility, resupplied, and since there was no other place to go at this point, I decided to head back to the area which gave me so much trouble at the start of the game, the Outlaw Turf at Ceto II.

Using the Jump Drive, I arrived back at the sector but this time, I was more prepared, more patient, and more equipped. Along with my heat-seeking missiles, I also had a mine thrower and my primary weapons Blaster and Rail Gun were more powerful. Some of the Outlaw Drones were destroyed by a single shot of the Rail Gun previously so I had high hopes of clearing the sector this time around and I was right, my much-higher level than the enemies gave me a clear advantage in the situation and my weapons chewed threw them. I cleared the sector, found the stranded survivors, and took them back to the base. It was a good and clean sweep for me and I felt really proud of myself as the survivors thanked me and gave me a cool parting gift. At this point, I was finding myself to be pretty much invincible in the game.

Preview Everspace 2

However, it also meant that I had exhausted the Everspace 2 Early Access Prototype as I could not travel to any other sector or system at this time. The map shows at least 6 or 7 more systems but they are currently N/A at this point. The Early Access build will probably arrive with tons of more locations as well along with additional features. Before I conclude this Early Access Prototype Preview, I would like to mention how stable the build was. The prototype mentions right at the menu that it might contain some bugs but the game ran exceptionally well for me. I did not encounter a single glitch, error, or crash during my entire playthrough. The prototype was a pretty stable build despite being a pretty early one.

I tried mining some iron and copper as well but I just had to shoot their deposits and they automatically went into my inventory. I had some mining tools with me and I was looking forward to using them for mining but maybe a more detailed mining process will be added in the future. To improve your ship, you simply have to find better modules and equip them. To improve your ship’s health, you can find a better Energy Core. Similarly, you can find better Thrusters, Armor Plating, Sensors and more to make your ship better in every way. Unfortunately, I only found different weapons and could not find better ship modules despite spending quite a lot of time with the prototype. Still, I was pretty happy with my time spent in the game.

I also really liked the gameplay of Everspace 2. In its current form, the game is extremely easy to play. You use WASD to move around, mouse to aim and fire your weapons, quick slot buttons for consumables, and Q and E to rotate your ship around. Shift and Space increase and decrease your altitude. However, when it comes to the UI of the game, I would like some small tweaks here and there. For example, when I was in combat, I would lose my white cursor if there is a star in the background or any other white object in the background. The cursor changes according to weapons but the color remains white. Overall, I really liked the simple yet effective UI of the game however I would like it if the developers do something about the cursor so that it is much more prominent in combat. Apart from this, I found the combat pretty good. You need better weapons and a higher level to take down multiple enemies but as you explore the game, you easily manage both of these tasks as I found from my experience with the game.

This was a very early prototype that I played for this Early Access Preview. I really hope that I get to play the Early Access version of the game as well because I really liked the game in its current form. I love such space-faring games such as Elite Dangerous and Star Citizen however Everspace 2 is more of a space shooter so you will see more focus towards combat and shooting side as compared to other tasks such as mining and trading. Despite both of these mechanics present in the game, you will clearly notice that Everspace 2 is mainly a space shooter and it appears to be a really good one as well. I cannot wait to jump into more of the world of Everspace 2.

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About the Author: Umair Khalid

Founder of GamesHedge, Umair enjoys a wide variety of video games ranging from RPGs to racing games. Currently busy with The Crew Motorfest and Way of the Hunter.

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