Buzz Aldrin's Race into Space

DOS game, 1993

Strategic Visions
Interplay Entertainment
DOS (1993)

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Perhaps each of us as a child dreamed to become an astronaut. However, you need a huge amount of effort and work to able to become one. Buzz Aldrin's Race Into Space is a space simulator where your goal is to lead the space program of a chosen country (you can play for the U.S. or the Soviet Union) to the moon. Buzz Aldrin's Race into Space (BARiS for short) is a simulation of the space race between the Americans and the Soviets. The player assumes the role of the commander of the American or Soviet space program and his task is to ensure that the astronauts or cosmonauts of his country are the first to land on the moon. To be successful, you must develop new hardware that will allow the flight, hire the right people and ensure they are able to return to Earth alive. The famous American astronaut Buzz Aldrin was one of the game consultant, so the game got its name after him. The heart of the game is the space missions, which come down to dice rolls. At each step of a mission, the safety factor of the relevant component is checked against a random number, adjusted by relevant astronaut skill bonuses (if the mission is crewed), safety penalties and other factors. If the check fails, an error occurs. Such an error may range from catastrophic mission failure down to no effect (e.g. "The first imprint in the lunar surface is in fact made by a helmet visor. Crewman okay."). Placing a satellite in orbit has three steps, while a Moon landing can have well over twenty. Missions are generally non-interactive; occasionally during an incident, the player may be given the option of aborting or proceeding.

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