Gratuitous Space Demo

Positech’s battlefleet manager game, Gratuitous Space Battles, is now available to purchase. To celebrate this space-fact the demo for the game has been posted, which means you can all have a play of the game without having to pay a penny. Get it here. Cliffski says to expect more development, as well as mods, in the coming months.


  1. Ian says:

    Oooh, good news. No idea what I’ll make of this, but such a tremendously-named game deserves a go.

  2. Javier-de-Ass says:

    ah, just saw it went up on gamersgate. better to get it directly from positech I guess. looking good

  3. Uglycat says:

    Doesn’t support dvorak keyboards and causes my aging P4 to overheat.

    But I like it lots.

  4. CMaster says:

    There goes Alec’s recommmending it as “one of the games of 2010” then.

  5. Inigo says:

    The Delete and Caps Lock keys don’t appear to work. Which is really annoying when you’re trying to name a frigate “FUCKING TORPEDOES EVERYWHERE HOLY SHIT”.

  6. OoiTY says:

    Good thing I bought the game a few days ago, I saved 2 whole dollars!

  7. Inigo says:

    And would it really kill you to display a list of all my ships down the left hand side of the screen so I could view the shield/armour/hull status of my fleet at a glance?
    That said, the status reports make me chuckle, repetitive though they may be.
    I can’t feel my arms.

  8. Inigo says:

    Also the screen flips upside down whenever I change screens.
    Though I’m assuming that’s just because I’m running this on WINE.

  9. Skinlo says:

    When I click on the link, it still says the usual ‘we will release a demo closer to the final release’.

  10. autogunner says:

    just had a go on this, will be picking it up on next weeks budget.

  11. Heliosicle says:

    bought it a couple of months ago, I didn’t want to be upset by any problems there may have been, so I left it till it fully came out, which is now!

  12. roburky says:

    Despite some interface complaints I’ve had, I have had a lot of fun with this game. I highly recommend it.

  13. Railick says:

    How does this compare to dwarf fortress roburky ? :P

    • Vinraith says:

      It has a crippling lack of both dwarves and fortresses, I’m afraid. :P

  14. DMJ says:

    I enjoy this game. I have for a while now. It’s a simple idea executed with flair that throws up new challenges whenever I return to it because the rebalancing and tweaking is happening at breakneck speed.

    Cliffski seems to have more time for his game’s community while working all on his own than companies which employ people specifically to talk to the community.

    Also: roburky, you play Dwarf Fortress and you have interface complaints?

  15. gryffinp says:

    I’d say it’a bout 63% Dwarf Fortress. It’s also very hard. Jesus.

  16. Railick says:

    Well what are giant battle ships if not fortresses in space? : )

    That has me thinking, are there any games with dwarves in space? You'd think they'd fit right in. I imagine a giant space ship the shape of a battle axe that has extra thrusters on one side and allows them to literally chop enemies ships in half with the oppiste edge of the battle axe shape ship (which has extra thick armor to take the blow and has an edge to cut into the enemy ships hull allowing them to tear other ships apart without actually harming their own vessel)


    • Klaus says:

      Well, I suppose you could argue that the Krogan in Mass Effect are some type of dwarves. Lizard dwarves. The Asari are pretty much space elves. At least, that was my take on it.

    • Vinraith says:

      The only two “dwarves in space” instances I can think of are dwarves in Spelljammer (AD&D 2nd Edition’s spectacularly awesome space setting) and Squats in 40K (space dwarves in the truest sense, though they got dropped from the setting due to lack of love :( ).

  17. Railick says:

    You know I'm kind of surprised that we don't have a Bloodbowl 40K yet, it seems like a no brainer for Games Workshop to draw in all those people that don't like Warhammer but DO like Warhammer 40K. It could even be almost exactly the same rules just with the War 40K races, though I imagine a Necron team would probably be a lot worse to play against than a Kehmri team ;)

    • Vinraith says:

      I don’t know, they don’t even keep normal Blood Bowl properly in print really. They act like it doesn’t sell, which I find a little hard to believe.

  18. math0ne says:

    I just played through the demo, and I don’t know but it seemed to me the difficulty was very low. I just spammed some ships and was able to beat all the levels on expert.

    Is it just the demo, or is the game that easy?

  19. kandalf says:

    Well, I haven’t played through the missions in a while so I can’t attest to their difficulty. However, there is a survival mode in which you accrue points based on how long you survive, and “multiplayer” mode where you can browse a list of challenges put together by other players.

  20. MadMatty says:

    Couldnt resist picking this one up… played for about 3 hours and its good fun so far

  21. GCU Speak Softly says:

    I liked the demo a lot – played with it for several hours and it’s on my “to buy” list. Minor niggles as mentioned above – fleet list etc., but then again, I did only find out after playing for a while you can rename your ships…

    Two thumbs up and no doubt it’ll be modded to hell, hopefully. Maybe I can have my Battlestar with squadrons of fighters aboard!

  22. Railick says:

    I liked the demo but I don't think I'll buy the game until the price comes down a bit, if it ever does : )

    Is there any way to place more than one ship in a row without having to go back and drag it from the ship list? I tried to beat the first level with a hoard of frigates with plasma launchers and it took forever to set it up (only to be totally defeated lol) Also is there any way to change the names of your ships ?

    P.S. The reason I'm not buying the game isn't because it's not any good or anything, I just don't have the cash. Between RPS and Vinraith and Fede I've been convinced to buy a lot of older games and indie games recently so my games funds are totally gone : P ( I got a lot more good games this way though instead of spending 60 dollars on one new release game)

  23. James Allen says:

    You can place a number of the same ship in a row by right-clicking on the design and selecting “mass”
    You can also change the name of your ships by right-clicking as well.

  24. Railick says:

    Danke !: )

  25. mrrobsa says:

    Top stuff. The tutorial was a great guiding hand too as I was a bit overwhelmed by all the stats at first. Although I agree with comments on difficulty. I didn’t feel like I was playing strategically enough to win. My tactic was just to place as many guns as possible on cruisers. So many in fact that I forgot to put any engines on the ships, but the enemies helpfully navigated to within my weapon range which was nice.
    Love the music and the pew-pew lasers and particles too!

  26. Man Raised By Puffins says:

    Yeah, once you’ve got the knack of putting together a passable cruiser it’s pretty straight-forward to breeze through the campaign. The challenge (at least as far as the campaign goes) arises from trying to accrue as much ‘honor’ from each battle as you can, i.e. using as few ships as possible.

    There’s also a lot of fun to be had just using the campaign as a sandbox, tweaking different configurations and trying out new fleets.

  27. TheBlackBandit says:

    Now, I just downloaded the demo, and I want to say two things. Firstly, and more technically, this works great on a mac under Crossover. No problems at all. Don’t let that put you off.

    Secondly, this is a very funny game indeed. Had the most actual laughs with this since I played Sumotori for the first time. Maybe it’s just the fun of making the largest, most expensive thing you can, and then watching it fail to do anything with the grace of an elephant.

  28. Railick says:

    I like the messages that the ships post from time to time and their randomly generated names are often funny ^_^ I'm totally going to pick this up once I get a Gratuitous Space Tax Return