Derelict Void – Review
Follow Genre: Survival, Roguelite, Strategy, Resource Management
Developer: Stirling Games
Publisher: Stirling Games
Platform: PC, Mac, Linux
Tested on: PC

Derelict Void – Review

Site Score
6.4
Good: Great artwork, clear UI and theme overall, good concept
Bad: Very difficult due to RNG which can make the game short, wearisome, and repetitive after a while
User Score
7.0
(1 votes)
Click to vote
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 7.0/10 (1 vote cast)

It has been a little over a month since indie studio Stirling Games released their second-biggest project, Derelict Void. The game is a galactic roguelike city-builder involving scavenging for resources and base management. You command a ship and crew that you need to keep alive while you’re searching for resources. Pilot a traveling spacecraft and all its production facilities, and rescue as many people as you can afford. The game is ruthless and unforgiving, which will force you to learn and improve in order to survive.

Story

You immediately begin the game on your spaceship that is drifting around an unknown star. According to the ‘Status Report’ on the first pop-up window you get – which includes a few tutorials to help you start off the game right – the crew suspects there was some sort of accident involving a wormhole that collapsed, tearing random objects all around the ship that transferred you into some new place. Fortunately, you are not alone. There are distress signals and transmissions from the remnants of what was the local government. Luckily, the ship is still well enough patched together to still have some resources, supplies, and a working engine. The question, however, is for how long?

Graphics

The visuals of Derelict Void are nicely handled. The space/futuristic theme is definitely there which greatly helps with immersion. The UI of the resources and other information is also very clean and neat, which is actually very impressive since there’s so much you have to keep an eye on during the gameplay. This is not an easy thing to accomplish, which is often very noticeable when playing similar titles. Having it well integrated into the overall theme is much appreciated. The well-drawn artwork found in the game is also impeccable. These pieces of artwork almost look like paintings. It’s always nice to have some beautiful imagery along a wall of text. Big props to the designers!

Sound

It’s obvious that there was a lot of effort put into the graphics of the game, too bad we can’t say the same for the sound design. What is there is still functional, it just doesn’t ooze the same quality as the graphical prowess of the game. We would have liked for it to be fleshed out a bit more. You have your basic chill lo-fi soundtrack in the background and you also have the basic sound effects along with your in-game actions.

Gameplay

It’s all about resource management and strategy. Derelict Void is a space survival adventure in which you have to manage your base and scavenge for resources. You command a spaceship and its crew with the objective of staying alive for as long as you can. This means you need to take risks and make the right choices to survive. You help others stranded in the void, or leave them behind to save yourselves. Make stops at other locations to scavenge for supplies, or burn the resources you currently have to gain speed. As more survivors join the craft, only a robust network of factories can sustain them. Therefore, it is important to choose wisely on every decision you take, or you will fall victim to the void.

Resource management and strategy are key! You start off with a limited number of resources and supplies such as oxygen: 15 hours, water: 3 hours, among other essential needs to survive. There’s a lot to cover and keep an eye on. Meanwhile, you also have to rebuild your spaceship and optimize to accommodate your space and crew, such as acquiring tools and adding buildings. On top of that, you also need to keep track of what you need to be able to travel to other locations because this also uses your resources. In other words, your resources are depleting at an extremely fast pace.

Derelict Void makes use of a random number generator algorithm (RNG) to decide your amount of resources/supplies that you begin with. The latter is barely ever in your favor, making it already hard to start the game with. Not only do you need these valuable resources for your basic needs to, for example, eat, you also need them to build your ship, and travel. All this together, it sounds kind of unfair, making it seem you’re doomed from the start. It’s pretty unavoidable to quickly perish in the first few playthroughs. Even for veteran strategy gamers, this might be incredibly frustrating. After a while the game becomes very repetitive, especially with the developers clearly making the game harder than it should be.

Conclusion

Derelict Void has a great concept and is overall well thought out of for what it should be. The game seems impressive when you read about it and look at its visuals. Unfortunately, with the dev’s choice of using RNG and having so many challenges, the game isn’t what you’d expect from it. The gameplay is not enjoyable for longer gaming sessions. There’s so much resource management involved, making the game very difficult and tiresome for replayability (which is almost an obligation at this point). However, Derelict Void has potential and can turn into a great strategy game with some fixes. This is definitely not a bad game, but it’s surely not for everyone.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 7.0/10 (1 vote cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
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Derelict Void – Review, 7.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating
JenRox


“Keep your friends close, but your memes even closer”.

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