The Space Game


They’re not messing around with the nomenclature. The Space Game is a splendid little browser-based real-time strategy. In it you have to build a grid of energy nodes, mining units, and defence towers, in order to complete the asteroid-hoovering tasks set for each mission. As the game goes on your mining grid is heading deeper and deeper into enemy territory, and the battles you have to fight to get your precious space rocks becomes even more intense. It’s beautifully constructed, and rather engrossing. Go play it. (Thanks to everyone who sent us the link over the weekend.)

EDIT: Interesting point made in the comments that Harvest does something similar, better. We talked about it previously here.

31 Comments

  1. Ian says:

    Just had a go at the tutorial and first level, and it’s quite splendid so far.

    Edit: Maxed-out missile launchers are totally worth it.

  2. Gurrah says:

    Total rip-off of the brilliant Harvest – Massive encounter from oxeyegames. link to oxeyegames.com

  3. Tei says:

    The authors of Harvest Massive encounters are not happy, but IMHO are wrong. Features are viral Dune 2 copy older games. CNC older games, Warcraft 3 older games.. most games are a rippoff of each another. Theres stuff like the control stup (WASD) that are a mirror from one game to another. You can’t claim some guys have cloned your game, because all damn games are (in a sense) clones. Harvest (game that I have buy in steam) is brilliant, but still is a turret defense game, hardly a original idea.
    Even this game, Space Game, adds something new: the nodes have a limited conectivity, this make so you have to plan ahead against this limitation.

  4. Lollerskater says:

    I have to agree with Gurrah. “The Space Game” might not be the most original game ever, but it gets points for effort in setting an atmosphere and it has some nice ideas of its own.

    It’s just that in my opinion Harvest did it better in almost every way.

  5. BlahBlah says:

    I was interested right up until the moment you mentioned Harvest. Harvest really isn’t my type of game at all. I played that a few weeks back and grew so bored of it within about half an hour that I uninstalled it and never looked back. Tower Defence, as a concept, is just so DULL.

  6. Ginger Yellow says:

    Damn, I was going to make the Harvest comparison, but I was too busy playing the game. That said, I’m preferring this to Harvest so far.

  7. the affront says:

    Seconding Ginger.
    Firstly this is free. Secondly, micro-managing your energy transmitter structure in Harvest pissed me off something fierce once everything started overloading (also linking lasers, while in theory great, got old fast). Thirdly, this manages to fake progression via a “campaign” – which it really isn’t, but Harvest’s sandbox-only gameplay bored me even faster than this. Finally, I’m just a huge sucker for space settings, and somehow limiting spaceships to a 2d plane in space absurdly requires less suspension of disbelief for me than doing so on a planet (nuke it from orbit!).

    Anyway, someone needs to take this mechanic and build a campaign/story around it, carrying over resources between missions and adding a tech tree, or something.

  8. Ste says:

    Can’t get past the mother ships…which may be a good thing as I can now stop and do something more productive instead..

  9. Heliocentric says:

    Whee! How awesome would this game be with learning genetic algorithm ai and/or multiplayer.

    Crawling up against scriptied attacks gets old fast. I’d love if sins of solar empire expanded on its base building in a similar direction to this.

  10. Ian says:

    Golly. I got quite the beating from the motherships.

  11. FunkyB says:

    Re: Motherships, yeah me too and then I worked out 6-7 power plants will keep 3 fully upgraded THELs firing, which is really all you need. Oh and 3 rocket launchers to pick off a few before they reach you.

    Anyway, I really liked this, so I bought Harvest off steam. The devs shouldn’t really moan too much :)

  12. FhnuZoag says:

    I would actually say that while it’s uncomfortably similiar, it’s a different game. I mean, there’s a lot of structural similarities (and suspicious theme similarities), but I guess they can be put down to genre, in the same way that all Tower Defense games are similar. (Harvest can be called similarly a rip off of 20000 Light Years into Space. link to jwhitham.org.uk)

    I’ll also say that it’s better than Harvest, or at least brings a lot new to the table:
    1. More balanced weapon set – no laser charging.
    2. Structure hitpoints.
    These two are actually critical, because it changes completely the way the game is played. Harvest is about building powerful nodes, and killing things before they contact your buildings. TSG is about building lines of defense that don’t just kill things, but protect others by soaking up damage.

    3. Line of sight
    4. More distinct enemies. Enemies that shoot.
    5. ‘Story’ campaign
    6. More streamlined micromanagement
    7. Energy reserves/storage
    8. Upgrades for all buildings

  13. M_the_C says:

    Played this yesterday, it’s a good quality game but it didn’t hold my interest for long.

    As for motherships, I didn’t get many THELs setup, missile launchers seemed better as the motherships often stayed too far away. They took out quite a few of my smaller lasers though.

  14. FhnuZoag says:

    Re: Motherships

    I find upgraded missile turrets with anti-fighter protection to be *very* effective against them. Just make sure you leave a few k minerals for ammo.

  15. Ian says:

    Did the motherships. Didn’t bother with the normal lasers, just 4 THELs, 3 or 4 missile launchers, a few power things and a few energy storage modules. All fully upgraded.

  16. Heliocentric says:

    I enjoyed building a spinal column of level 1 power plants then a series of limbs of reflectors and miners. All weapon platfroms built in responce to attackers. Missiles at level 3, and the heavy laser at max level, a few pulsars if missile ships or motherships look like they’ll get close.

  17. simonkaye says:

    Well, there went my morning.

  18. RC-1290'Dreadnought' says:

    very addicting…

  19. Pirate Pete says:

    It’s like Harvest in the same way that Counterstrike is like Quake! Both games rock in their own way.

  20. caesarbear says:

    Mission 6 sucks as it’s pure trial and error. Not bad overall.

  21. Lunaran says:

    Blew WAY too much time on this. I was never at all interested in tower defense, but I loves me some node graphs.

  22. Polysynchronicity says:

    Level 2 power station, 8 level 3 missile launchers.

    Blows away motherships, and the missile-machine-gun effect is awesome to watch. ;)

  23. CdrJameson says:

    Played the whole thing through in one go, and only lost once, the first time the motherships appeared.

    Lovely game, but far, far too easy. Minor problems:

    Upgrading your miners is too powerful.
    Miners are too robust against attacks.
    Basic lasers are too powerful.
    Recycling undamaged basic units doesn’t cost you anything.
    Enemy AI seems to pretty much not exist – it won’t go for decent targets of opportunity.
    Enemies don’t approach from different enough directions.
    Player is generally too powerful.

    Fix those bits, and you’d have a truly excellent game.

  24. Ian says:

    For the first time since I first encountered the motherships I’m having trouble. On the last level and I really need to crack my initial set-up.

  25. Alex says:

    Was excellent fun. Sucked up a good hour.

  26. Powerhaus says:

    All in all it’s damn fun, especially when the game requires you to start optimizing your resources to a high degree, instead of throwing them out there as in the early missions.

  27. Jon says:

    Can anyone beat the hardest madness mining mode? I can get to 19k but it just seems impossible as the arcs the enemies start coming in are like 180 degrees at that point.

  28. dotadi says:

    From the look of it, I’d say it’s very similar to Moonbase commander, one of the best and most original games I’ve ever played:
    link to en.wikipedia.org

  29. Pontus says:

    I’m happy, and I’m one of the creators of Harvest.
    Also, the guys behind TSG have talked to us, so we’re all cool! :)

  30. John says:

    Having trouble with mission level 9. Can anyone help?
    Very good game though.