I'm surprised that this game hasn't received much attention.
First, the disclaimer. As a game, Planets is only so-so. Controlling your ships is cumbersome. This can be forgiven to a certain extent - it is a ZZT game, and you've only got a few keys on the keyboard to work with. However, there are still a couple of glaring problems. For one, the programming is not idiot-proof. You have to be very careful when you move your ships, because it is possible to break the game. Attacking other ships (and the other player's planet) can be confusing. There isn't much strategy involved - both sides have the same number of ships, and all ships are equal, as far as I can tell. There are a few sound effects, but no music. The ending is lackluster.
Now that that's out of the way, I'll tell you what I like about Planets. The engine is innovative and very ambitious. It is a turn-based strategy game in ZZT, and as far as I know, it's the only one. The execution might not be stellar, but it isn't a horrible game either - it's fun to engage enemy ships and watch the health meters with suspense. The graphics are pretty good, too. What really strikes me, though, is that it was written in 1996, a year before ZZT was released as freeware. Now, I'm pretty sure this wasn't the first engine game ever, but it's early, it's advanced, and I'm surprised I haven't heard of it before (or seen a similar type of game in ZZT).
It's not a brilliant game, but it does offer some entertainment value, and it's a clever little engine. Definitely worth a look.