Drone Zone: Command Line ‘Em Up Duskers Released

The command line terrors of sending drones into derelict (but… not empty) spaceships delighted us in Duskers [official site] even when it was in Early Access. Marsh Prematurely Evaluated it with great vigour, and Brendan declared it one of the best computer-y games. After nine months in Early Access, Duskers is now done and properly launched today.

So, something terrible has happened. Where is everyone? Maybe it’s best not to know. As perhaps the last person, Duskers will have you pootling around the galaxy in your ship, scavenging for supplies, upgrades, and information by sending drones into ships. All you know comes through drones and your computer interface, with a combination of basic controls and an actual command line you type into. Drones are your eyes and your hands, probing with their motion sensors and interfacing with ship systems to fire up generators, open doors, power miniguns – y’know, things you might need when exploring spaceships which probably have something awful lurking in them.

Here, look, it’s our Brendy with some good words:

“A lot of hacking games are about panicking and typing fast under pressure. But Duskers is about being meticulous, cautious and cunning, so that you don’t have to be rushed. Use motion scanners and sensors to detect harmful bioforms. Flush aliens out of the ship by remotely opening airlocks, or interface with the ship’s defence systems and lure them toward some on-board turrets. It’s only made more tense and methodical by the roguelike structure and the FTL-like fuel consumption. I will never forget the time I had to leave behind my best and brightest drone, Turing, because I had no way of dealing with the monstrous entity that had disabled him. I’m sorry, old friend.”

Duskers is available now for Windows, Mac, and Linux from Steam, GOG, and the Humble Store for between £12.29 and £13.49, depending on which store you favour. Here’s the spooky launch trailer:

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    Grizzly says:

    There’s also a Cogwatch on Duskers, to add to the array of articles that RPS houses:

  2. theslap says:

    Saw this on quill18’s channel and it looked really good. The price seems like it might be a little but I guess I don’t really know how much content there is.

    • theslap says:

      little high*

    • nearly says:

      Misfits Attic has been pretty clear throughout alpha/beta about how finished the game is. I picked it up when I saw it on Early Access when RPS did that Best Hacking / Programming titles list. It’s been interesting to see the progress bars slowly fill in through each update.

      If you’re worried about content, one of the last things that’s been worked on is adding more story. I don’t really see that as important: it’s a lot like FTL, but rather than just sort of jumping from point to point, you basically jump to a ship and search it for resources using your drones. You can control the drones manually (generally not the best way to go about it) or use text-entry commands and macros.

      If you enjoyed FTL and enjoy programming type games, there’s a lot to like. Don’t remember what I paid but I seem to remember taking the plunge because the developer had posted in a thread about whether or not the price would change (and he said it wouldn’t). I’ve enjoyed my time with it and never really felt that it was especially unfinished for how I played (though, keep in mind I’ve never actually had a successful playthrough of FTL or any of the other rogue-likes I own).

      Another plus is that the developer is very active on the community. He often shows up to respond to posts directly on the subreddit and generally seems to be a pretty cool guy. He occasionally does videos and streams as well. Very happy to support efforts like this.

      • theslap says:

        Thanks for the reply. I’ll have to look into a bit more. I did love FTL and I like programming and sequencing games quite a bit too so maybe I should just go for it!

  3. Stylo says:


  4. jj2112 says:

    I don’t know, this only makes me want to play Paradroid again.