Final Command (Ubisoft) Review | ST Format - Everygamegoing

ST Format

Final Command
By Ubi Soft
Atari ST

Published in ST Format #12

Final Command

Military research has discovered a new method of space travel which promises an end to the conflict that's been raging on Earth for the past twenty years. The governments involved have decided to end the conflict to form the United States of the Earth, an organisation dedicated to furthering the human race's occupation of outer space.

The United States of Earth decide that the federation is a new beginning and symbolically start a new calendar. Things progress well until Federal Year 129 when the warlike Horgants emerge and begin to attack colonists settling in new worlds.

Using a new type of bacterial weapon, the Horgants manage to wipe out entire planets with a deadly virus. A treaty is eventually signed to put an end to the conflict, but the Horgants maintain an aggressive position by intimidating outlying USE settlements.

Meanwhile, USE scientists continue work on the revolutionary new teletransporter which will enable troops and colonists to travel between different planetary systems in a matter of seconds. The transporter should allow the United States of Earth to outnumber the raiding Horgant forces.

To enable the developers to work on the system away from prying eyes, a hidden planet must be used. The chosen planet is Ipsos III, a dark, unforgiving world supposedly unknown even to the marauding Horgants.

Unfortunately the two research bases on Ipsos III haven't sent reports for some time and fears that the Horgants have infiltrated the base and found the secret teletransporter information are rife.

You are USE agent YG 30 and you travel to Ipsos III to retrieve the data banks from the research computers before the Horgants find them. Unfortunately, the Horgant presence on the planet is heavier than assumed. The ship in which you are travelling, the Centaure, comes under attack. Most of the crew are killed and the ship is badly damaged.

This is where you take control of the mission, using a pointer to search the immediate vicinity. When the pointer moves across an item of particular interest, clicking the left mouse button informs you what it is. Another click picks up an object or allows access to another section of the game. Items that have been picked up may be used in other locations, but the consequences can be dangerous, so a save game feature has been included for those disastrous wrong moves!


Final Command's opening tune is a lightweight affair that fails to create the sinister atmosphere needed. The game itself, however, has a wealth of sampled music and effects which combine with the murky graphics to create a suitably oppressive sci-fi atmosphere. The screens are all well-drawn and each area has a distinctive feel - from the broken down research base to the weird Horgant space shuttles.

Surprisingly, the programmers have avoided the "Aliens rip-off" approach and produce a unique and enjoyable playing environment.


Despite initially appearing confusing, the game isn't at all difficult to get to grips with. The pointer system is easy to use and draws you deeper into the adventure one step at a time. Most of the puzzles require a great deal of thought, though at times of fire frustration there's always brute force - often more useful than you might think.

The only problem with the game is the way separate locations are loaded from disk - even parts of the same room require some disk access. This is annoying when you have to travel through a series of rooms to get to where you want to be.

This quibble aside, Final Command is an involved and intriguing adventure that has the kind of decaying, doom-laden atmosphere that sci-fi buffs and ardent adventurers revel in.

Maff Evans

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