2020’s most depressingly realistic sci-fi sim
A few weeks out from the June 16 Steam Early Access launch, we’ve got a fresh look at Hardspace: Shipbreaker, a cathartic game about slicing derelict spaceships to extract their precious innards so you can pay down a billion-credit debt. I’m on board for the sinister premise and cool laser cutting.
Today’s video is a four-minute gameplay overview. If you ever got a kick out of Dead Space‘s “strategic dismemberment,” Hardspace is like that, but more – minus the terrifying, effed-up body horror.
That said, it’s by no means a carefree venture. As the voice-over explains, “one accidental cut could mean the destruction of the entire ship and you along with it.” During each job, you’ll scan for potential hazards like fuel lines and pressurized cabins that require finesse with your laser cutter tool, and when you reach the heart of the ship in hopes of a big payday, you’ll have to hurry. When a ship’s valuable reactor is extracted from its coolant tank, it becomes a ticking time bomb, and you’ll need to safely drag it around with a leash-like grapple tool until you deposit it at the salvage bay’s drop-off zone.
Blackbird is also planning to bring Hardspace: Shipbreaker to PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, but one thing at a time. For now, I’m pretty intrigued by the Early Access pitch. I’m hopeful the mechanical foundation and carrot-on-a-stick gear upgrades are strong enough to support the weight of a 15-hour story.
That’s just Act 1, by the way! They’re swinging for the fences with an eventual 40-hour campaign.