3rd Apr 2003 | 15:16
When a game is over five years in the making, you can usually guarantee it'll be a waste of everyone's time and money. The Getaway, anyone?
Thankfully, Freelancer doesn't fall into this category. Although it's been delayed more times than the 08:15 from Paddington, for once it seems our patience is to be rewarded. It's everything you've ever wanted in a space sim, wrapped up in the best graphics we've seen this side of, well, X2 (see opposite).
Greed is good
You play Trent, a mercenary with little more than a ship, a gun, a handful of credits and the kind of stony-faced grimace that passes for 'hard' over the pond in Hollywood.
Whether you're trading goods, running errands, hunting criminals, even being a pirate, it's all up to you. There's a background story about terrorists to dip in and out of, but mainly Freelancer gives you the freedom to do whatever you want.
With plenWty of ships to choose from, dozens of star systems and hundreds of planets to visit, plus more background intrigue than a typical day in Parliament, Freelancer should be well worth the wait.