Artemis: Spaceship Bridge Simulator puts you and your fellow players right behind the viewscreen of an majestic spaceship in the vein of the starship Enterprise. Each player is a proud member of the Terran Stellar Navy, dedicated to serving the United Space Faring Planets and innocent beings everywhere. The catch is, you aren’t all controlling every function of your own ship. No, you are each a crew member focused on controlling just one aspect of the Artemis! Each player has their own computer and own function in operating the spaceship.
The Science console uses their special scanners to get detailed information on other ships’ signatures and detect anomalies in space that others might not pick up on. The Weapons console is in control of the ship’s weapons, of course, but also its shields; there’s not enough power to always keep every shield up! Communications keeps in touch with friends and enemies alike, negotiating aid, surrender, and information with equal verisimilitude. The Helm console pilots the ship and can bring it into warp. Engineering manages power and heat concerns for all the ship’s systems and can overcharge them for bonuses, but also manages damage control and onboard repairs. Finally, the Captain has no direct control on the Artemis, but coordinates the efforts of all other consoles and manages the team for an effective response to all missions.
The game can theoretically be played with one person, but it is recommended that 3-6 work together in the cockpit. Regardless of how many people are playing, objectives vary over a choice of three modes. The first, Invasion, creates a random mission where hostile alien forces attack and your ship must defend all USFP stations and ships in the sector. The second mode, Mission, has a number of pre-built missions with specific objectives to accomplish. And Game Master, the third mode, allows an additional player to take the role of Game Master and run their own scenario your crew will have to deal with. There’s a lot of potential variety, especially between the four different hostile factions. Each faction has their own culture, ships, and problems with the USFP that the crew will have to recognize and utilize to turn the tide of battle.
Though graphically simple, the cooperative and strategic depth of Artemis is formidable. With such powerful delineation of duties, everyone gets to role-play their job while really sinking their teeth into the fine details. On a good ship, everyone will be on their toes and ready to work together. On a bad ship… let’s just say that smart crew members will have their escape pods at the ready. Place your bets on just what kind of ship Game of the Game is going to run, and then watch 4-7pm PST on our Twitch channel to find out.
Featured image credit: Artemis