Captain Impostor is the third game in the Captain Forever series and focuses more on piloting skills than building ships. Rather than constructing a ship out of nothing, the player's ship, the Narcissus, clones other ships. The primary challenge of the game is adapting to the booster and weapon abilities of the cloned ship, as well as careful piloting, to ensure victory. According to Farbs, the creator of the series, Impostor is "a twitchy frag-fest."
Impostor was released on March 3rd, 2010 as a free title for all supporters.
Unlike the Nemesis (Captain Forever) or the Eris (Captain Successor), the Narcissus does not does not have weaponry integrated into its command module. Instead, the Narcissus is equipped with a device known as the Clone Drive.
The Clone Drive is a snake-like tail which autonomously seeks out enemy ships. Once it attaches to the enemy ship, the Narcissus can completely copy that enemy ship's configuration, including its modules and their orientation. The level of the modules, however, is not cloned; rather, the level of the copy is determined by the amount of "Clone Power" that the Clone Drive has stored at the time.
Pressing SHIFT engages (Narcissus alone) or disengages (Narcissus with modules attached) the Clone Drive.
As enemy ships are destroyed, the Clone Drive absorbs resources from the resulting explosion. The more Clone Power stored, the higher the level of copied modules. The amount a ship provides upon destruction doubles for each tier.
Clone power is measured in Binary (that is, in 1's and 0's); thus the succession of power given is 1, 10, 100, 1000, and so on. Additionally, this means each level of ship gives one place value less clone power than that level of parts would take to generate.
When using the Clone Drive, power will be lost for each cloning. This means players must be extremely selective of the ships borrowed. When cloning at a certain level, the power reverts to the level under the one prior to cloning. This means the second digit of the power before is now 1, and the first digit ceases to exist.
Consider these examples:
- Narcissus is at Clone Power 100 (4).
- Narcissus clones a Bravo ship.
- Narcissus is now at Clone Power 10 (2), and the clone is at Bravo level.
- Narcissus is at Clone Power 110 (6).
- Narcissus clones a Charlie ship, kills it, and then destroys a second nearby.
- Narcissus was at Clone Power 10 (2), but gains two 100's. (+4+4)
- Narcissus is now at Clone Power 1010 (10) and can clone at Charlie level.
- Narcissus is at Clone Power 1001. (9)
- Narcissus, already in clone form, kills a Delta ship (+8).
- Narcissus is now at Clone Power 10001 (17), and can clone at Delta level.
- Narcissus is at Clone Power 1.
The current level of clone power determines the enemies encountered; similar to previous games, enemies will spawn at up to two levels above the ship's. For instance, if the Clone Drive is at Foxtrot level, the highest-level ship that can be encountered will be two above, or Hotel. Thusly, one needs to be extremely careful when hunting for ships to clone.
Comparison to Other TitlesEdit
The modules and enemy ship types are the exact same set used in Captain Successor; unlike the locked cultures in Successor, however, ships in Captain Impostor can be of any type at any tier. There are four major differences between Impostor and all other captain games:
- All weapons deal double damage. For instance, a single shot from an alpha laser destroys a bravo laser.
- Enemy ships do not inflict damage to each other. They can still damage themselves, however. This prevents gaining clone power too easily, and helps keep ships intact for cloning. Ramming spikes, including Blix's, will discharge but do no damage.
- Enemy ships enter the screen at very high speeds regardless of their actual propulsion, flying close to the player before slowing down.
- Enemy ships not fired upon for a while will disengage and attempt to fly away, even if they were aggressive before.
Main article: Captain Blix
Captain Blix will appear after the Narcissus's Clone Power has reached Juliet level. Its module are of Kilo level, with the exception of the four Delta lasers inside the ship. The ship is armed with a wedge of 9 ramming spikes supported by repair modules and seven bubble-protected Mk. II Boosters. Blix's ship is one of the most powerful the player will encounter in the series, and it is recommended that the ship is cloned immediately. Because of the lasers, however, attempting to fire weapons will result in the destruction of the ship.
Once Captain Blix has appeared, he will remain on attack until his ship is destroyed.