Desynced – Preview
Follow Genre: Management sim, building sim
Developer: Stage Games Inc.
Publisher: Forklift Interactive
Platform: PC
Tested on: PC

Desynced – Preview

Good: A solid gameplay foundation to expand on with future updates
Bad: Tutorial doesn't cover everything and ends abruptly
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(1 votes)
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VN:R_U [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 8.0/10 (1 vote cast)

City-building sim games aren’t exactly a new concept. In fact, the first one of these, The Sumerian Game, dates back all the way to 1964. We’ve come a long way since then, of course, as The Sumerian Game was a very rudimentary text-based game. One would imagine that we’d have seen every possible variation on city building sims in the six decades that followed, but developers keep trying to innovate and come up with new ideas. A recent offshoot of the classic city sim games are base building sims. The core ideas of strategizing, resource management, and structure building remain the same, but instead of keeping citizens happy, you’re essentially trying to create a self-sufficient facility in harsh environments. Stage Games Inc’s Desynced follows the latter template. The game is currently still in Early Access on Steam, and we took a look at it to see if it’s worth it to already lay the foundations of your space base or if you’re better off waiting for the full release.

A short video opens Desynced, omitting narrative elements and simply showcasing several of the game’s core features, from harsh weather conditions to alien animals attacking the base. It’s enough to get your adrenaline flowing and given how slow the opening stages of Desynced are, it keeps you motivated and excited for what’s to come. After this video, the premise of the game is laid out in the form of a text blurb, delivered by ELAIN. ELAIN (Emergent Logistics Artificial Intelligence Network) is your trusty AI assistant. She explains that you, the Commander, have crash-landed on an unknown planet while in stasis sleep. You’ll need to establish a base to survive the harsh conditions and find a way to eventually escape the planet. Fortunately, you don’t have to do this alone. Alongside ELAIN, you also have access to a variety of robots that are capable of taking care of all the labor required. All you need to do is tell them what to do. Simple, right?

The core gameplay sticks to tried and true patterns. Your basic robots can be equipped with the necessary tools to perform simple tasks, such as gathering raw materials or creating new structures. To set up a new building, your construction robots require specific materials, like metal plates and circuit boards. You’ll need to produce these from raw materials, which are gathered by your mining robots. More complex buildings require rarer materials and advanced components of course. Occasionally, the core gameplay loop is broken up by the discovery of ancient buildings that hold rare and precious items. Some of these can simply be looted, but the majority require some kind of additional effort, whether it’s upgrading your robots with specialized equipment or even having to solve simple puzzles to unlock them.

There is of course more to Desynced than the gather-build cycle. You’ll need to not just keep an eye on resource management, but on your worker robots as well. They run on battery power and need to be charged, so having an efficient power grid is essential. Likewise, the planet is inhabited by alien creatures that may attack your base or your workers if you disturb their territory, so having some kind of defense system is also essential. Most of these things are easy enough to figure out, although we did feel like ELAIN’s tutorial overwhelms the player with some explanations, and then ends a bit too abruptly. Not everything is explained as thoroughly as we would have liked, so we hope that future updates rework the tutorial to cover things in-depth and improve the gameplay flow.

One area where Desynced sets itself apart from other titles in the genre is the sheer amount of customization. Every time you start a new game, the planet is randomly generated, so you never know what to fully expect, but you can tweak a plethora of things, such as the amount of resources a planet holds or how hostile the alien fauna are. Those looking for a harsh challenge are able to set this up, but if you prefer a more laid-back space adventure, that’s also an option. Additionally, the game comes with built-in mod support through Steam Workshop, so the replay possibilities are nigh endless. The cherry on top is that Desynced offers online co-op multiplayer, so if you want to team up with a friend to build the ultimate space base, then that’s definitely an option too. For an Early Access title, there is already plenty of content here, and the foundations for plenty more have already been laid. We particularly look forward to seeing more story content added beyond the initial premise, as the game already hints towards things to come.


In its current state, Desynced doesn’t really bring anything new to the table in terms of gameplay, but the foundation that is laid out here is solid. The core gameplay loop is easy enough to understand, but streamlined and satisfying, and thanks to the huge degree of customization, players are able to make the game extremely challenging, or turn it into a chill experience as well. With tons of things yet to come, we can’t wait to see what the future holds for Desynced, but as it stands, it’s already well worth checking out.

VN:R_U [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 8.0/10 (1 vote cast)
VN:R_U [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
Desynced - Preview, 8.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating


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