Guernplan – A VGA Planets Game

Jul 1, 2007

VGA Planets is a brilliant multiplayer turn based strategy game

Over the years VGA Planets is probably the computer game I have spent the most time playing – it is also probably the cheapest. It came on three floppy discs, posted from America, and once installed you got a dodgy user interface and suspect graphics inspired by various sci-fi genres. What you also got was an incredibly rich mixture of races to play and a huge variety of gameplay styles underpinned by a demanding economic model.

Playable with up to eleven players, each of which controlled a unique race, you competed to expand your stellar empire. Economics were simple yet incredibly difficult to master – it was not uncommon for newbies to completely mine their homeworld to the core in the first few turns and shortly after run out of fuel to move their ships. Combat was just as simple with individual ships fighting each other two at a time, there was no fleet combat. Now you would think this gave the races with the biggest ships an advantage – which it did, to a point. Races with with smaller ships had special abilities, such as cloaking and robbing to allow players to adopt sneaky tactics – all of which added brilliantly to the character of the game. You were constantly learning new tactics and always weighing up which ships and races had the edge in certain situations.

Will Guernplan ever return?

Probably not, but I wouldn’t rule it out. More recently I have been working on my own space based PBeM game tentatively called LCOG (Lost Colonies of Guernsey) which is into it’s third test game.

[Game Archive][1]

I’ve collected up the scores and maps for the games we played – 11 I think and put them on the [Game Archive][1] page.

[1]: /vga-planets-games-archive/