TransOcean 2: Rivals
Top Critic Average
Developer: Deck13 Hamburg
Publisher: astragon Entertainment
Genres: Simulation, Strategy
TransOcean 2: Rivals achieves a level of complexity and interest deeper than first glance would give it credit for. There are actually interesting decisions to make and slightly different ways to chase victory. The major problem with is that the pacing cannot be slowed down or paused at all, and against A.I.s that are not particularly intelligent, but able to manage the hundreds of actions the player needs to be doing in a very short period of time, this leads to repeated losses. Most of the depth the game offers is simply lost because the player is forced into narrow paths to maximize their limited capacity to manage actions. There ends up being little 'strategy,' as nothing can be analysed or weighed or decided because strategy very quickly becomes a repetitious 'looks good enough' and victory feels hollow and losses feel random.
I really enjoyed this game, mainly because it is one of those games that excels in its wonderful simplicity, from the gameplay right through to its controls. The more you play the game and the further you progress, the more you get out of it. I found myself wanting to come back and play it again – which is surely the mark of a great title? In the case of TransOcean 2, it describes those sentiments perfectly.
TransOcean 2: Rivals - Official release trailer