Space Cannons Ready: House Of The Dying Sun Deets

There is a house in New Orleans

THEY CALL THE DYING SUN

Is that the right words? No, hang on, House of the Dying Sun [official site] is the tactical space combat ’em up that’s inspired by TIE Fighter and Freespace and was formerly known as Enemy Starfighter. Silly me. It’s en route to Steam Early Access next month and has a stonking new trailer that’s packed with missiles and explosions and lightning-fast dogfights and… why not just pop below and see for yourself?

That looks pretty neat! Graham thought so too when he went hands on with an early press build a couple of years back, however combat has changed quite a bit in the interim. Most notably, scenarios are no longer procedurally generated.

Developer Mike Tipul explains that the game is “HIGHLY dependent on positioning and timing to make it sing”, so he’s filled it with “highly crafted, lightning fast fights that have designed enemy setups, sight lines, engagement ranges, reinforcements, custom AI behaviors, and more.” As such, here’s how House of the Dying Sun works today:

“The campaign is a hit-list of 14 custom-built assaults and assassinations with three brutal difficulties and bonus objectives. Each mission requires you to jump in, complete your objectives, and get out before you are intercepted by a massive traitor flagship.

“Completing missions and bonus objectives allows you to upgrade your fleet in many different ways including unlocking new weapons or modifications. These in turn will help you tackle harder encounters in ways more suited to your play style.”

House of the Rising, rather, Dying Sun will support both traditional monitors and VR (compatible with both the Rift and the Vive) when it lands on Steam Early Access next month.

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46 Comments

  1. danimalkingdom says:

    Enemy Starfighter is a better name. It sounded wonderfully matter-of-fact, and a little ’80s.

    • Geebs says:

      I think the dev bottled it, actually. IIRC originally the player was the bad guy; it looks like that’s been changed to a revenge plot to make it more palatable.

      Shame really, Enemy Starfighter was a much better name.

    • klops says:

      Yes.

  2. Messofanego says:

    I’m guessing they mostly changed the name to avoid confusion with the 80s movie.

  3. milligna says:

    Ah goodie, more VR pew pew. I’ve been jonesing for a single player mission fix and EVE Valkyrie was a big letdown in that respect…

  4. Premium User Badge

    everstep says:

    I love the name, the font choice, the vaguely Dune-inspired themes… This is great. Really great.

    • Cinek says:

      It’s actually Homeworld-inspired. Backgrounds, music, sound effects, graphics style, engines glow, map, the way texts appear on the screen looks pretty much exactly as it did in Homeworld games.

      • A Wanderer says:

        First thing that came to my mind : Homeworld. Please, someone make a space fighter game in the homeworld universe already.

  5. Phasma Felis says:

    IIRC, it casts you specifically as the loyal enforcer of a tyrannical, mass-murdering space empire, which…I’m not certain how I feel about? I dunno, I have no problem playing GTA as a gleeful agent of chaos and random murder, but somehow this seems like it would bother me. Not sure why.

    • RecklessPrudence says:

      On the off-chance you monitored this post, seems a lot of people had a problem with that, which is why it’s been changed. It now seems to be a revenge thing, with the old emperor being assassinated and you and your force killing the cabal that did it, rather than you leading an invasion/extermination force for a tyrannical empire.

  6. froz says:

    OMG, someone resigned from procedural generating for custom tailored content. Finally! I can’t wait to try it.

    • Hunchback says:

      X:Rebirth is all pre-made, i believe?

      • froz says:

        No idea, haven’t played it. However, I didn’t mean that all games have procedural generation, but that it is so often treated like something better then custom content, while it just so clearly is not.

        • TheMightyEthan says:

          It has advantages and disadvantages wrt custom content. Advantages are you can make an effectively infinite amount of content, so you don’t have to repeat the same things over and over. Disadvantages are that that content isn’t going to feel as purposeful or well-crafted as custom content.

          I mean, can you imagine playing Minecraft, or Civ, without procedural generation? It would get boring really quick.

          • Cinek says:

            Civ is a decent example of the games where throughout the series all the hand-made maps were magnitudes of order better than the procedural.

      • Cinek says:

        It’s hand-made.

  7. seroto9 says:

    Finally, a space game where you can be The Hero!
    I’m sure it reveals all that I’m lacking in my ‘real life’, but I’m looking forward to this.

  8. Hunchback says:

    Well, those COULD have been the right words. In any case, the song is forever awesome :D

  9. Hunchback says:

    There was a very interesting looking space “sim” game that was made by ONE guy who would post very long and awesome devlog videos explaining stuff and all… And i can’t remember the name of that thing for so long now!

    PLX HEKP!

  10. emotionengine says:

    I’m digging the Homeworld meets Battletech (meets… err, something else) vibe I’m getting from this.

  11. Catweasel says:

    14 missions sounds so miniscule. :(

    • TheMightyEthan says:

      Well it’s early access, maybe there will be more in the final version?

    • 0positivo says:

      Depends. Homeworld was 16 missions, yet I wouldn’t describe it as minuscule either. Really all depends on how long, deep and replayable they are

      (also, with how little time I have lately, I really appreciate a game that I can maybe finish every once in a while…)

  12. Det. Bullock says:

    A single player spacesim that isn’t a sandbox spreadsheet ’em up?
    Count me in.

  13. Det. Bullock says:

    Looked at the steam page:
    link to store.steampowered.com
    “*NOTE: This game supports rebinding controls, but only dual analog gamepads and keyboard & mouse modes are officially supported. ”

    What the hell is this nonsense?
    Only dual analog gamepads officially supported?
    I hope it’s just some nonsense to keep the “cannot use rebinding menus” crowd from complaining, because if they pull a Freelancer that’s very disappointing.

    • TheDreamlord says:

      Yeah that’s the first thing I noticed (and looked for) as well. Saw your following posts, hopefully they will support HOTAS well when it’s released. It would be a pity not to.

    • Cinek says:

      It’s kind of laughable that space sim does not support HOTAS controls, or that the guy that spent hundreds of hours working on it doesn’t even have a HOTAS. It really should be *the* default input device anyone writes a space sim for. So… I guess I’ll just wait and see if it ever gets a proper HOTAS support and what people think about it.

      • MacPoedel says:

        I get your frustration but a developer is entirely justified in choosing which audience to target. If the flight model is developed so that it is most suited to mouse+keyboard or even a controller, and modifying it for a HOTAS flight stick would deteriorate the experience for other gamers (or if it would be too much effort considering how much flight sticks are around), I think it’s better to not support those instead of having a suboptimal solution.

        Freelancer has had a VERY dedicated fanbase to this day, myself included, and I have no problem with the m+k controls.

        Also this is clearly an arcade game, I would say most people owning a HOTAS flight stick are into more “realistic” stuff.

  14. Det. Bullock says:

    Okay, went to the official site:
    link to houseofthedyingsun.com
    “House of the Dying Sun works great with just a keyboard and mouse, but was designed with a dual-analog gamepad (Xbox 360, DualShock 4) as the “lead” controller. We highly recommend one of those. Don’t buy a HOTAS specifically for this game!”
    Okay, does it mean that it will only use Xinput or that the default binding for game peripherals will assume that you are using a dual analog gamepador mouse and keyboard?

  15. Det. Bullock says:

    I scrolled down a fair bit (my old laptop didn’t let me scroll the page so at first I thought the FAQ was it) and I found out I went into a panic for nothing:
    “Better joystick support. There’s no need to worry about config files anymore, and I’ve gotten my hands on an X-52 to test. I personally don’t like playing the game like this, and the it still feels like it’s made for gamepads (because it was). But if you want to play with one of these beasts, you should be able to bind things easily enough in game.”

    • Otterley says:

      Great find and what a relief :)
      Thanks for looking that up.

  16. Christianus Invictus says:

    All this talk of hunting down Traitor Lords, fulfilling the Emperor’s final edict, bringing war and ruin to the galaxy, and false kings reminds of Warhammer 40,000 more than anything else.

    • MacPoedel says:

      The plot might remind you of Warhammer 40K, but the visuals surely don’t (they look a lot like Homeworld). It’s a very small scale developer (afaik it’s one guy), can’t really blame him for being a bit unoriginal in the setting.

  17. karthink says:

    That looks wonderful… but I can’t get past the fact that eventually all space dogfighting games end up in a boring tail-chase.

    (Plus, this looks like it really needs head-tracking (if not VR), and my homebrew Wii remote & LED cap setup is just not cutting it anymore.)

  18. A Wanderer says:

    Homeworld.
    Homeworld.
    HOMEWORLD !
    I mean, look at the ship design, the desert-like background, the way the text appears, the music…my little heart is happy now.

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    PoulWrist says:

    Neat. I will probably get this when it leaves EA. Always nice to have more games for use with that expensive HOTAS setup … looked like it had TrackIR/VR support as well.

  20. Dante80 says:

    Been waiting for this for years. Finally managed to pay Kairo (Mike Tipul) for his awesome work.

    The ambience and atmosphere of this game is amazing. And it is only the start…<3