In their upcoming title, Deadrock Divide, the team at Bootsnake Games is attempting to follow up their award-winning title: Containment: The Zombie Puzzler, with an ambitious, turn-based, tactical combat, sandbox RPG. Think XCOM meets Privateer with a lot of Star Wars references and self-deprecating humor thrown in. Yeah, it’s all that… and thanks to the hardworking Bootsnake crew, we got our hands on an early pre-alpha demo just in time for their Kickstarter.
Deadrock Divide unleashes players in a newly discovered asteroid belt (aptly dubbed “The Deadrock Divide”) amidst what is the near equivalent to an 1850’s gold rush for resources. The Divide, filled with corporations, pirates, and traders are all looking to make their mark, and living, in the belt. In true sandbox fashion, players choose their own path: become a trader and haul goods between space systems dodging pirates, police the outposts and take the fight to the pirates, or join the shady side of life and board innocent cargo ships.
The world is now, what we believed the future of space to be like 30 years ago. Think old CRT monochrome displays, scan lines, chunky space suits, grid heavy computer generated maps, that beautiful blue Tron hue, all perfectly wrapped a brooding synth heavy soundtrack. It must be said in warning, any fan 80’s sci-fi will more than likely be afflicted with flashbacks and a perfect excuse to break out those old VHS movies that have been tucked away in storage all these years.
Combat in the Divide is spot on with what you’d expect from classic and new turn-based tactical combat games like XCOM, Shadowrun, and Klei’s Invisibles Inc (if you’ve managed to get your hands on it). Action follows a grid-based movement system with each character bringing their customized abilities, skills, “space magic” and weaponry to the fight. While the classic fog-of-war-ish discovery of enemies comes standard, the addition of destructible terrain makes grenades that much more useful when it comes to taking a shortcut through a wall into the next room.
On top of solid combat, Deadrock Divide is already showing signs of an impressive meta game that includes resource gathering, crafting of weapons, character skill trees, diverse team loadouts, equipment and gear (even a beltbuckle slot), and the ability to upgrade your ship with medical bays or more cargo space to help compete against the AI-driven traders passing through the belt.
It’s great to see a game in such an early stage of development already showing signs of its ambience, flexibility, mechanics, and core systems, directly aligned with its influences. Without doubt, Bootsnake Games will deliver another solid title with Deadrock Divide, making it an easy choice to back with our Kickstarter money.