XPilot for the iPhone is the remake of the original networked multiplayer game for UNIX workstationsÂ 90’s game by BjÃ¸rn Stabell and Ken Ronny Schouten from the University of TromsÃ¸, Bert Gijsbers from the University of Amsterdam, and Dick Balaska from BuckoSoft.COM. Whilst XPilot never quite died; you can apparently still find a dedicated few still firing up their cloaking devices and remotely detonating mines with an evil chuckle, 7b5 Labs, XPilot enthusiasts since the beginning, have resurrected this nearly-forgotten classic and brought it to the iPhone.
In a nutshell, XPilot is a 2-DÂ multiplayer Asteroids-likeÂ computer game,Â open source, currently running on most platforms and is an example of earlyÂ third-person shooters before being steamrolled by Doom, Starcraft, and the Web.
WhereasÂ the original XPilot client relied heavily on the keyboard for all input (no mouse control at that time), XPilot for the iPhone uses touch control to steer and control thrust. The main blaster is activated by a button in the corner of the screen. Additional weapons and items are used by opening overlayed menus (sort of like the iPhone keyboard) with buttons for each item, and the menus may be closed to not distract from normal gameplay. Controls are a little hard to get used to but only after few minutes of play you will find yourself a lot more conformable navigating the ship. Because of the client/server architecture, a data connection is required for play.
The XPilot iPhone App draws significantly from the original XPilot project and the laterÂ XPilot NG branch. These projects are available as open source, as is the XPilot iPhone App. You canÂ clone the repository hosted atÂ http://7b5labs.com/xpilot.git
– Pilot your ship through a world based on uniquely authentic 2D spaceflight physics: thrust, momentum, and acceleration are as vital to your survival as lasers and cloaking devices.
– Navigate through an array of wild and devious spacescapes and arenas teeming with gravity wells, transporters, and automated cannons.
– Collect items to build up your ship’s capabilities.
– Fire heat-seeking missiles, switch on tractor beams at just the right moment to throw your competitors off their game, remotely detonate proximity mines.
– Team up to steal your opponents’ treasure or simply indulge in random acts of chaos.
XPilot is a must for anyone interested in retro gaming. Visually, the game is wonderful, controls need a little getting used to but I haven’t had a chance to fully explore the game yet. From having spent 10 minutes with it, I can see myself spending quite a few more hours. If you are a fan, you have probably already downloaded it. If uncertain, you can get a lot more information about the game and history behind it on 7b5 Labs’s website.
7b5 Labs was created in 2009 by Sean Cier and Michael Sherman. Sean and Michael each have over 15 years of professional software development experience, including computer graphics software development and work with UNIX, Linux, Windows, and OS X systems. read more..
Developer: 7b5 Labs
Video of Â the original game: