I always figured that there was a reason that I haven’t been able to fly through space very often in video games. That’s why the make or break moment for me in Rebel Galaxy was so simple – how does it feel to jump to lightspeed? Double Damage figured that out and then some. Point in a direction and go. Suddenly you are flying by all kinds of wonderful distractions, and if something gets in your way you jump out of lightspeed and deal with it.
The bonus to Rebel Galaxy is that “dealing with it” is actually really damn fun, too. The key is that while you are in space, all of your movement is in a flat 2D plane. You only have to worry about what is ahead, behind, and beside you because you won’t need to fly up or down. It sounds limiting when it’s described, but in execution the space battles and escapes you experience are much better for it.
Flying around, flying away from fights, and flying into a surprise battle with a dreadnaught starship are all as exciting as they should be. It’s no small feat to pull that off, but Rebel Galaxy fills out the time inbetween the action just as well. The soundtrack immediately makes you feel like a bad ass smuggler, and interacting with various shady characters across the many space stations makes the galaxy feel quite dense. After a few missions, I thought things were feeling a bit mindless when I stopped off a new location and was immediately called out by military for smuggling illegal materials. I have no idea when I picked those up but I panicked, fired, and took off for the next system. I guess I’m a wanted man now. Thanks, Rebel Galaxy.