Halcyon 6: Starbase Commander is Now in Full Release

It’s been a long road for Halcyon 6: Starbase Commander [official site], making its way from Kickstarter to Steam Early Access, and as of this week, its final release.

Halcyon 6 is something of a hybrid. It’s got a tactical RPG battle system, but when you’re not picking space battles you’ll be upgrading your base and managing your crew, so there’s a tasty bit of micro-management and chasing after shiny things. Mmm. Shinies. On top of that, Massive Damage is promising an “emergent storytelling” system. Places you discover and equipment you unlock will affect which story events you come across, meaning your story can play out differently every time.

The game looks gorgeous and that music sure is something, isn’t it? I’m really enjoying the whole package here. The mix of RPG, base-building, and crew management elements is really appealing, and the storytelling looks very promising. There’s a lot to explore.

Although Halcyon 6 has at last achieved its final form, Massive Damage has a host of new content in the works to fill Kickstarter stretch goals and backer rewards. We’ll hear more about that in the near future.

Halcyon 6 is out on Steam for Windows, Mac, and Linux. At a 15% launch discount brings it to £12.74/16,99€/$16.99 until September 15th.


  1. Leafcutter says:

    Thumbs Up.
    Don’t mind the graphics… gameplay is excellent.
    At last a decent space game on the scene.

    • DThor says:

      Thanks for that comment about the graphics – I’m having difficulty consolidating the “looks gorgeous” in the article with what I’m seeing. I don’t care one whit if it’s a cruder, obviously indie feel if the game itself is good, but that comment in the article made me suspicious. Sounds like this one is a winner, will likely snag it.

      • ButteringSundays says:

        “cruder, obviously indie”, said by someone that clearly has no idea how much effort goes into such an art style.

        Most importantly ‘gorgeous’ is entirely subjective, nothing to tax yourself over.

  2. Ericusson says:

    Reviews seem really positive since release, will give it a shot.
    After all this summer’s deceptions … Very little can lower the quality of the releases we had in the past 2 months.

  3. Minglefingler says:

    I’ve played two hours and I’m really enjoying it so far, I’ve been getting the pleasantly stressful vibe of feeling under pressure as I’m trying to deal with what the game is throwing at me at the same time as I’m trying to put my own plans into place. There’s a good range of difficulty levels and yeah, the art and music are fantastic.

  4. Captain Narol says:

    How good are the tactical battles ? XCOM level of complexity or something more streamlined like old Heroes games ?

    • Minglefingler says:

      The combat is closer to jrpgs than xcom. The idea is to inflict a staus effect with one ship or character and then use another’s attack to exploit than effect for increased damage. Only certain attacks can exploit certain effects though and the status effect is removed when you exploit it so it may be wiser to wait until it’s almost gone before you do so. I imagine it gets more complicated later on as there are three classes of ships and a lot of skills to choose from.

      • Minglefingler says:

        Status effect damn it!

      • DelrueOfDetroit says:

        As far as 3×3 JRPG battle systems go, this one is pretty good. Repairs are costly or time consuming so taking the least amount of damage always becomes a priority. You can’t just pop a bunch of health potions after each battle. The attacks feel nice and punchy too.

        I’ve also noticed that some attacks will have a specific ship part in their description. I haven’t worked out how this mechanic fits into the system yet though.

    • HeavyStorm says:

      Minglefinger was a little too light on his comment. The combat has NOTHING to do with XCOM, and is JRPG (Final Fantasy, for example) like in all aspects. The main element is a comboing thing, that works like this: most attacks buffs the enemy, and most attacks exploits those buffs, so you get one character to buff, the next one to exploit it, comboing their attacks and dealing extra damage.

      Unfortunately, my experience thus far gave me the impression that it’s a bit superficial… You look at your characters, find a buff and exploit that combines, and execute them in order. The buffs themselves felt simple and not combat turning.

      • Premium User Badge

        Malarious says:

        Yeah, the entire game feels very… shallow? I’m honestly surprised the reviews are so positive. I’ve played about an hour and nothing really grabs me. Doubt I’ll play any more unless there are some major patches/content updates. Probably not going to refund it because I’d like to support Canadian indie devs but the store description really implied more depth than I got. It seems way, way overpriced. At $9.99 I think it’d be an easier pill to swallow.

        The skill trees are very linear — just incremental upgrades for all your abilities, which is disappointing because skills are the only thing that differentiate your characters. You don’t get armor or weapons or anything like that, which would be fine if there was maybe one more layer to the combat, but there isn’t — you just take turns casting your spells on each other for 10 or 20 rounds. At least Darkest Dungeon had an interesting positioning mechanic!

        • BlueTemplar says:

          Wasn’t FTL also pretty shallow at launch? Then came the Advanced Edition, and especially all the modding (Captain’s Edition!)

          • Wednesday says:

            No, FLT was great from the get go. Advanced didn’t change a huge amount.

    • DelrueOfDetroit says:

      The XCOM comparison comes from the base building as the space station works almost exactly like the ship does in XCOM 2.

      You could also say there are similarities in that you can name your officers and ships so you might get that whole emotional attachment + OH NO! thing going.

  5. Vurogj says:

    Just had a quick dip, but it hasn’t put a foot wrong so far. Clean and polished, not gonna tax any systems, and the gameplay basics all seem pretty solid. Looking forward to going deep into it and seeing if the early promise holds up.

  6. Rollin says:

    I played it for a couple of hours, nothing really wrong with it except that it’s so simplistic and feels like one of those mobile games. I don’t think I could recommend it at it’s current price on Steam, I’d say more like £5 when it’s on sale

    • HeavyStorm says:

      Couple of hours in as well, feels like a very good mobile game. Of course, not sure it could fit the form factor, but it’s a casual experience.

  7. McGuit says:

    Got it yesterday at the sale price on Steam. Looks like it is well worth the money so far.
    Good game.

  8. mercyRPG says:

    Pure amazingness! Has turn based ground combat and space battles. Will wait for a couple patches then I’m willing to buy this on a Christmas Sale.

    No Star Control II in regards to hi-res alien graphics and no voices, but still hell a lot of fun.

    I’m planning to write a really good review for this.

  9. HeavyStorm says:

    Only thing: lots of people calling this a blend between Final Fantasy and… FTL? Fuck me, there’s no FTL in the game. Unless because it’s “space”, it’s FTL, but if that’s the case, call it a cross with Freespace for all I care.

    Otherwise, the game is involving, although I wish there was a bit more to it than combat.

    • noodlecake says:

      Because it has roguelite elements and it’s in space. Managing resources, random events/galaxy, travelling to new places without knowing what’s going to be there… etc.

  10. Nick says:

    Enjoying it well enough but every system in it is extremely shallow, sadly.

  11. vahnn says:

    Backed the game ages ago but I must have accidentally let my beta/Steam keys washed away in the tide of junk filters and auto-deletions. Missing the beta is fine, I was going to wait for the full game anyway… But I didn’t know the game was releasing today! And when I *finally* have an entire day off and nothing to do!

    Sent an email requesting a re-send of my key, but I expect it will take a while, being a Sunday and all. Can’t wait!

    • vahnn says:

      Got my key within a couple hours, although I didn’t check my email until close 11pm. Booted up the game and proceeded to lose almost 4 hours to this game. So much for going to bed early.

      The game is really fun so far.

  12. mercyRPG says:

    Fantastic bombastic game! After a couple of patches and adding the features the devs are talking about. ETA: early 2017 maybe? Then it will be a full grown must have game.