Assigning a score to a game is almost as subjective as writing the review of the game in question. It’s a little easier to assign the score, especially when you work with a small, matter-of-fact scale from one to five. Still, what could be a five to someone else might only score a four to someone else. Such is the case with this review of Space Station: Frontier.
When I found Space Station: Frontier on the App Store I had set out to find a game similar to a free to play flash game I had gotten myself addicted to months ago, and I found the next best thing to that actual game itself.
The premise of the game is simple. You are a deep-space miner, your space station positioned in various mineral-rich asteroid fields. The space station provides power, and you have to strategically place power lines stretching out towards the asteroids so you can build and power mining machinery to mine the asteroids dry. However, random waves of enemy ships will spawn in and carve a path of destruction in an attempt to destroy your space station, so you have to also utilize weaponry to defend yourself, which turns the game into an interesting beast. Power suddenly becomes as valuable a commodity as the minerals you need to buy new equipment; higher-end weapons use up a lot more power, and if you run out of power your weapons go down, and you die.
It’s a surprisingly robust experience, offering a fully fleshed out campaign and different game modes to tackle, as well as an extensive amount of upgrades and new weapons to purchase with the credits you earn for completing missions and other objectives.
Here comes the subjective part of both the review and the score. The game demands a certain amount of level grinding. It quickly becomes apparent that even the campaign demands you abuse the upgrade system, while the prices for new weapons and upgrades is far too steep for the amount of credits you can earn from completed goals. It leads to a cycle of attempting to complete a campaign level, failing miserably, grinding out earlier levels or the other game modes for credits, buying a new upgrade, and getting a little bit closer to completing the level you’ve gotten stuck on before repeating the entire process.
This is why it’s so subjective. I think the game is great, but I loathe games that try to extend the experience by making grinding of any sort mandatory. Having said that, I did continue to play the game for a while after getting frustrated with grinding for new equipment, so take from that what you will.