Thanks largely to Kickstarter's ability to capitalise on nostalgic desire, space combat sims are in a much healthier place than they were. From Star Citizen to Elite, the days of not pretending to be in space are nearly at an end. But if your desire for a successor to Wing Commander or X-Wing extends to aesthetics, as well as genre, then maybe you'll be interested in Wings of Saint Nazaire—a deliberately retro-styled shooter that's currently in open alpha.
You can play the latest build of the game in your browser,
. Having spent some time with it this morning, I can confirm that it's a startlingly pretty game—deftly mixing pixel sprites and more advanced effects to create something simultaneously old-school and modern. It's a frantic game, too: at this stage there's not much to it beyond killing enemy ships, meaning you're instantly assaulted by a light-show of swarming baddies. The controls are somewhat floaty, but taking down ships is satisfying enough that I look forward to seeing how the game progresses.
Currently, there's no release date for Wings of Saint Nazaire's final release. For more, head to the
Wings of Saint Nazaire website