Space Rangers is a strategy sim about space age trading. It has a mix of strategy and action with a galactic economy. The gameplay starts very slow and picks up as you progress. The story is text-based, and the visuals are nothing exciting, but the system requirements are also very low. It is a decent game but not worth the price.
The trading element is all about finding or buying supplies and selling them for a profit. You can very easily play the market by buying low and selling high. However, you have a limited storage space in your ship, so you have to balance what supplies you carry with the materials you find in space. You find materials by destroying asteroids or even ships and using your magnetic cargo hook to drag items into your ship. Everything that goes into your ship takes up space.
There are many distractions from the trading element, including a very detailed story and ship customizations. The story is completely text-based, so you will not enjoy it unless you're in the mood to read. The ship customizations revolve around swapping out components, like the engine or fuel tank or the magnetic cargo hook or weapons.
The menus are unfortunately confusing, and the controls are poorly designed. The action sequences use the ctrl key to fire and the arrow keys to move, while the strategy elements are turn-based and require using the mouse. The menu elements are scattered and nested in screens of dialogue. The bottom of the screen is often filled with hint icons which do not have an obvious way to be disabled or removed. The way you remove each icon that pops up is right-click on it, but that is not made obvious to the player. There are no control settings, and the tutorial does not run through the controls thoroughly. The hint bubbles mention some controls but not all of them. Be prepared to have to experiment a little to learn how the game works and how to navigate the menus.
Overall, the game does not offer enough for its price. The sequel, Space Rangers 2, costs the same amount yet has more polish and more to offer. However, the original Space Rangers was also in a bundle deal, and if you can get this game for less than $3, you should snatch it right away. I enjoyed Space Rangers, but I rate it low, because it really is not worth buying at $10. It can be a fairly enjoyable but casual experience.
Another thing to look for when browsing PC games is the system requirements. There are really 4 things you need to worry about: RAM or memory, processor, video card, and finally, the hard drive space. Memory can be upgraded fairly easily, and it shouldn't cost much. We recommend having at least 1GB memory, 2GB if possible. Your processor needs to be fairly modern, and a Pentium 4 probably won't cut it. We recommend a 1.8Ghz Core 2 Duo or better. Your video card should support DirectX 9 (or higher) and have a minimum of 256mb memory attached to it. We recommend 512mb or greater. Hard drive space is subjective, but we recommend having a fairly large amount of space. You could settle for as little as 40gb and be able to play most games, but we recommend having 80gb or more space to make sure you have room for multiple games at once. Most PC games don't run straight from their disc. They usually require an install process, and most modern games require around 8gb of free space to install.
PCs are the ultimate game console, because they can be upgraded, and they will never go out of style. PCs can also play most old game systems through emulators, so if you lose your Playstation, you can just play your games on your PC. You can also play classic arcade titles and have infinite coins!
A lot of people complain about having to use a mouse and keyboard to play PC games. This isn't a requirement, fortunately, and we have what we call gamepads or joypads. Yes, we can use game controllers! We can even use Xbox controllers! That said, it's not as plug-and-play as a game console, and some games simply will not work with your joypad. Fortunately, Steam tells you if games support controllers, and if your favorite game doesn't support them, you can map the controllers to keyboard and mouse controls.
Just be careful when buying PC games. Read reviews carefully. If a game gets a 1/5, don't buy it. If your PC is a cheapie, don't expect modern 3d games to work. Read the system requirements very carefully. If you don't know anything about your system, you can find help in the PC Stuff forum.