Back in the day when us grown ups had to walk 10 miles to school each way, we also had the pleasure of playing one of the greatest computer games of all time... Buzz Aldrins Race Into Space.
BARIS as it is known for short, was released back in 1993 as a space simulation and strategy game. You effectively take on the role as head of the US space agency or head of the Soviet space program with the ultimate goal of landing men on the moon.
Historically accurate, the game begins back in 1957 at the start of the space race. There are several milestones to achieve... first satellite, first sub orbital, first manned orbital, all the way to lunar orbitals and getting men on the moon. Game play consists of sending out satellites like Sputnik, putting men into space programs and training them, developing different rockets like the Atlas and Titan, creating the Gemini program or even a fictional XMS-2 floating body (a mini shuttle). You will also need to do research and development on these various programs to increase the safety factors. Do you attempt to beat the Soviets with only a 72% safety factor or do you play it safe and wait another season until your safety factor is near 90%?
The most exciting part of the game is setting up your future missions, preparing for launch, and then watching your missions go through the various phases to see if they are successful. Complete with countdown scenes, docks, lunar landings, this is really some exciting gaming going on!
BARIS was created for MS DOS and later worked fine for Windows95 users. While me might all wait many more years for a new version of this game, we can now enjoy it on Ubuntu thanks to the developers making an open source version of it! Wooohoo! Its now available for linux, mac and windows.
Go here to download the DEB for the game...
We found the download to be extremely slow and even kicked us off a few times. If you have problems, please download from our backup (right click and save the link)...
Happy Space Racing to all of you and congrats to the MARS Curiosity team!