The Best Idea: Dinosaurs On A Spaceship

By Nathan Grayson on April 23rd, 2013 at 12:00 pm.

Oh god, no! Don't look this way! Aim your early 1990s cordless phone at the dinosaur, for goodness' sake.

My favorite thing about Jurassic Park was how dinosaurs always somehow managed to end up in the absolute¬†worst places. Right on the brink of a gigantic, car-devouring abyss? Yep. In a cramped generator room where everyone could’ve sworn they left the rest of Samuel L Jackson? Naturally. Oh, and how about the kitchen? I was half expecting to find raptors dressed in full chef regalia just going about their business when the kids fled in there. Dinosaurs On A Spaceship, however, is a “retro-styled futuristic top-down survival horror game” that’s looking to take that idea a couple million steps further. Yes, yes, that obviously means space, but how the prehistoric ultra-lizards managed to get there is a story that actually sounds kind of – dare I say it – interesting?

Here, then, is the plot, which is actually a thing this game has:

“Dinosaurs on a Spaceship is a retro-styled futuristic top-down survival horror game. Which following the title will have the player facing mecha-dinosaurs invading the ‘Cradle’, a spaceship constructed to carry the remains of the human species in cryogenic sleep to a new world leaving a heavily polluted earth. The twist is: the dinosaurs did the same when facing their extinction. They left the doomed planet to the lowly mammals and other lesser beasts, vowing to return when the Earth was once again suitable for life.”

As a result, your nearly pitch-black ship will quickly be overrun by “vindictive, now homeless mecha-dinosaurs.” Truly, the most dangerous combination.

In order to avoid certain, roarstomp boomkerplode death, stealth,¬†exploration, puzzle solving, and occasional action are your only options. And sure, it all seems quite graphically simplistic, but recent survival-horror outings like Lone Survivor and Home have pretty well proven that you don’t need Unreal Engine 437 to secrete wretched, oozing fear.

Of course, Dinosaurs On A Spaceship seems to be looking for a comfortable line smack dab in the center of scares and silliness, so we’ll see how that works out for it when it releases later this year. But still, dinosaurs. In space. Admittedly, it’s sort of already been done by that one Dino Crisis game nobody liked, but I’m all for someone else having another go at it. I mean, someone made a dinosaur dating sim recently. How hard can mechafuture prehistoric survival-horror in retrospace actually be?

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39 Comments »

  1. The First Door says:

    Yay, both dinosaurs and spaceships are wonderful things, so combining them will (hopefully) be excellent. Although if you can’t ride a triceratops I will be slightly disappointed..

  2. Guv says:

    I’ve had it with these mothafuckin’ dinosaurs, on this mothafuckin’ spaceship! Everybody strap in, I’m about to open some fuckin’ windows!

  3. moocow says:

    Based on the fantastically named, but ultimately disappointing Doctor Who episode “Dinosaurs on a Spaceship” from last series, I suspect

    • Woodwork says:

      The guy in the helmet in the trailer is obviously Rory in his Roman centurion outfit.

    • Ian says:

      I enjoyed the episode but then when I saw the name I expected it to be one of the most dreadful things imaginable.

    • Stupoider says:

      Ultimately disappointing? What did I miss?

      • BTAxis says:

        It was light on the T&A, I suppose?

        • moocow says:

          Mostly because of this:

          The Doctor: Have you got any vegetative material in your pants?
          Brian Williams: Just my balls.
          [Rory covers his face, embarrassed. Brian, confused by his reaction, produces a handful of golf balls]

          But also the flailing narrative of the second half, the inane robots and the pointless wacky band of historical characters.

          • strangeloup says:

            In fairness, series 7 has been pretty crap overall. Second half more so, imho.

    • ukpanik says:

      Red Dwarf also had an episode with a T. rex on the ship.

    • Acorino says:

      I like it, it’s one of my favorites of this series. Had some issues, like the unfunny robots, the rush rush rush pacing and the weird tonal shift from fun romp to serious drama towards the end, but those didn’t hinder me from watching it over and over again. Admittedly it’s pure spectacle and little more, but somehow that’s enough.

    • John Connor says:

      “ultimately disappointing” pretty much sums up all of Doctor Who for the past few years

      • Acorino says:

        I got a severe kind of love-hate relationship going on with the show. I’m a pedantic for plot logic, so naturally Doctor Who drives me crazy all the time. On the other hand I love the show’s humor, variety and imagination.

        • ChainsawHands says:

          I’m a pedantic

          Obviously not a very good one.

          • Acorino says:

            hurhur, yeah I’m so sorry that English isn’t my mother tongue, sucks. :P

          • Phasma Felis says:

            He said quite clearly that he was a pedantic for plot logic, not grammar. The man knows himself, you’ve got to give him credit for that.

      • Dare_Wreck says:

        So, as someone who is constantly trying to avoid deadly machines trying to kill him, are you disappointed at there being too many or too few episodes featuring Daleks and Cybermen?

    • The Random One says:

      Did the episode have dinosaurs? Yes.
      Did the episode have a spaceship? Yes.
      Were the dinosaurs inside the spaceship? Yes.
      Don’t be thankless.

    • cunningmunki says:

      ” …fantastically named, but ultimately disappointing Doctor Who episode” – Pretty much sums up the last eight years.

  4. TechnicalBen says:

    It’s been done in Dino Crisis 3. 1 was the best, and 3 an ok arcade style game I guess. 2 misses out both the RPG style of the first and a decent arcade of the 3rd. Although, I don’t remember much about the third game, so take that with a pinch of salt.

    • Syra says:

      I was just thinking diocrisis 3, which was pretty poor tbh. I don’t see why dinosaurs and space ships have any right to mingle.

      • TechnicalBen says:

        Yeah, it was better than the second… but in no way a good game. :P

  5. Tunips says:

    Now that is how you make a trailer. Terrific sound design, time the images to the music, don’t show the monsters in the dark. Evocatively pulpy writing.
    I don’t know if I want to play their game, but I want to watch their music video.

  6. Shadowcat says:

    Staring lens-flare eyes?

  7. LTK says:

    “Travel time: 1250 light years”

    aarrrggghhhh

    • YogSo says:

      Hey, not everybody can do the Kessel Run in less than 12 parsecs ;)

  8. Diving Duck says:

    But didn’t they get the memo? I thought it was a requirement that all games these days have zombies of some description in them? Perhaps DLC is planned?!? I for one look forward to running from undead-mecha-dinosaurs.

  9. Deadly Habit says:

    What if… DayZ, but instead of zombies… dinosaurs!

    • Sarissofoi says:

      Actually that is great idea. Also dinos can be much more diverse in types and more dangerous. So we can get packs of dinos hunting survivors.

  10. Jamesworkshop says:

    I’ve had it with these mother fruitcake dinosaurs on this mother fruitcake spaceship!

  11. distantlurker says:

    “Didn’t we just leave this party?” – Dr Who.

  12. Spoon Of Doom says:

    There was a Dino Crisis 3? And it was in space? Why didn’t anyone tell me!?

    • waaaaaaaals says:

      It was by far the worst game of the series.

      It also utterly killed off the series.

      • Spoon Of Doom says:

        They managed to mess up killing dinosaurs in space? How is that even possible?

        If I enjoyed DC2, would I still find it crappy or might there be a chance of getting some B-movie level entertainment out of it?

  13. Dromph says:

    Mine is an evil laugh!

  14. myelbow says:

    Eh…nobody? Alright I’ll do it…

    Snakes On A Plane

    There I said it. Is Samuel L. Jackson in this, too?