Laser-Launching RTS Shallow Space Hits Early Access

Like the twinkling stars and boundless planetary systems packed with auroras and abstract artistic cloudswirls that line our night sky, Shallow Space [official site] looks gorgeous. Inspired by classic inter-stellar strongholds Homeworld and Nexus: The Jupiter Incident, particularly the former, Shallow Space wants to be the next champion of the ever-burgeoning space scene and has landed on Steam Early Access in its attempts to do so. I’ve had a little play myself.

Thoughts, and a trailer with lasers and pretty colours, follow below.

After spending a short spell floating around in its spacey stretch myself, it looks promising. I spent ages tinkering with my ships’ appearance and loadouts before admiring how pretty they looked against the vast orange hue that emanated from the adjacent Saturn-esque planet. Some guy then fired a shot off at me, so I chased ’em.

It was fun. That said, in its current state there’s not a massive amount to get on with besides that – ship design, fleet design and organisation, and skirmish missions to demonstrate the game’s AI – such as the brief standoff noted above – are what players can expect to get involved with right now. According to James Martin, the game’s creator, however, the game will “advance quickly” through its Early Access stage wherein it plans to live for about a year, releasing two updates per month. By full release the game will have: a non-linear campaign; procedurally generated loot and ship modules; an RPG-like progression system; and cross-platform multiplayer, including co-op, amongst a few other cosmetic features.

Shallow Space is out on Windows, Mac, and Linux through Steam Early Access now for £14.99 (£13.49 after 10% discount until October 28).


  1. Fenaer says:

    I’ve been looking for a new RTS to come and make a splash for a while, but nothing seems to be sticking. Grey Goo showed a lot of promise then failed to deliver up to the hype. Before that, Planetary Annihilation turned out to be a steaming pile of fecal matter.

    Is there anything on the horizon that looks good?

  2. Toranaga says:

    Only someone who hasn’t ever played Nexus would say that this is like nexus, Homeworld yes, Nexus not even close sadly.

  3. honcho66 says:

    For me it looks more like EVE-Online than anything else

  4. Rich says:

    I know what you mean. I think it’s the colour palette.
    Also, the ships are sleek and curvy and don’t have the minimalist, angular style of Homeworld.
    Looks very nice though. The site suggests a well planned project.
    I’ll be keeping an eye on this one.

  5. ragnarokx says:

    It is definitly inspired by Nexus, you can see by looking at the GUI. Also, the ships are customizale etc, so it definitly smells like Nexus from that point view.
    The focus point is very more more like homeworld tho in regards to scale of battles etc.
    When you had like a half a douzen vessels in Nexus, you have half a douzen squadrons (units made up of several ships) in this game.

    From my point of view, it borrows visuals and customizating from Nexus. It borrows scale of battles from Homworld.
    It borrows gameplay/pacin, in my view, from Command and Conquer in that its many units versus many units in a rather quick battle compared to the slowish skirmishes of homeworld.

    Also, there is bit of StarRuler shipdesign in there in how you outfit your ships (you can design every type yourself) with modules, from different types of guns to shields / armor.

    I think it has an amazing potential and i really want to multiplayer 1vs1 this game once its ready and actual base-building / harvesting is in.

    Personally, what i dont like about this game is the ship visuals. I like epic, sturdy, brick-like ships, something of a mix of Babylon 5, Battlestar Galactica and Warhammer 40k.
    Shallow-Space’s ships are to agile, sleek, curvy in my eyes. I need a big BRICK with gun.

    • Zenicetus says:

      Rebel Galaxy isn’t a strategy game, more of a Freelancer thing, but you might like the ship designs there. They’re big, ugly (in a good way) stacks ‘o bricks with broadside guns and turrets. Very slow to turn, so they feel properly heavy and large. I haven’t seen anything curvy or agile yet, at least in the early game.

  6. Unsheep says:

    If you are a genuine fan of Homeworld and Nexus you should be excited for this game, otherwise you look like another poser babying for attention.

  7. SuicideKing says:

    There’s a FreeSpace mod for Homeworld, just saying.

  8. Panther_Modern says:

    I’d much rather have a homewworld mod for freespace