If at first you succeed, try again and make it even better. That seems to be the motto behind Morningstar: Descent to Deadrock, a popular freeware sci-fi thriller being updated and re-released later this month as a commercial adventure.
Morningstar casts players in the first-person spaceboots of a contractor named Powell, whose seemingly routine job soon becomes "a deadly mission to save the merchant vessel Morningstar and her crew." After a crash landing kills one fellow crewman and seriously injures the captain, Powell is "on his own to repair the ship and find a way to escape the strange gravity well of the empty planet they've landed on." Making matters worse is the discovery of a "much larger and better equipped ship and her crew, all dead, and not by natural means. What—or who—brought down these ships and is killing their crews? Why? And can Powell find a way off-planet before he shares the same fate?"
A first-person, point-and-click adventure with panoramic scenes by Red Herring Labs, Morningstar was originally released as a freeware adventure, which is still playable in your browser. The commercial version of the game is being published by Phoenix Online, and promises to include brand new puzzles and scenes, an extended storyline, remastered cinematics and soundtrack, and full voice acting to go with a more streamlined interface.
There's little time to wait for Morningstar: Descent to Deadrock, as the game is scheduled to launch for PC and Mac on February 17th at a cost of $9.99 at various online retailers.