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Terminal Velocity follows the exploits of a test pilot in control of an all new experimental craft, the TV-202.
Over the course of the game you are given orders to infiltrate different planets and take out key installations that pose a threat to your employers. Each mission is preceded by a text overview and words of caution about some of the enemies you might encounter.
The game is broken up into 4 episodes. The first of which was released as shareware early on. Each episode consisted of three planets, or areas you had to complete. Episode 1 had you attacking a massive space cruiser as the final mission, and Episode 3 saw the player destroy an asteroid that was overrun by enemies in the second mission. Once the player completed all missions successfully, the player would be sent to an alien world for a secret mission with no information given.
The game's multiplayer featured eight players over LAN, and two players over modem. Since at the time voice chat was not a common option and typing was difficult in a fast paced dog fight, the game had a dozen pre-recorded clips that could be played as taunts by pressing certain keyboard shortcuts.
The game offered both 320x200 video modes as well as 640x480, and the ability to increase the amount of debris that flew around after an explosion.