If you click on a link and make a purchase we may receive a small commission. Read our editorial policy.

Have You Played... Duskers?

Explore derelict spaceships with a squad of chirping robots

Have You Played? is an endless stream of game retrospectives. One a day, every day of the year, perhaps for all time.

I tend not to like games with obtuse interfaces, even those which have chosen those interfaces for deliberate affect. Duskers is that rare exception. You use a command line-stlye interface to control a small fleet of robots in order to explore and scavenge derelict spaceships.

The command line interface is just one stylistic flourish which sells this flourish. The other, most prominent, is the fuzzy, heat scanner-esque view you have of your robots as you steer them about the ships. Together these two things do a wonderful job of creating a sense of this world, of creeping dread and creepy spaceships full of creepy aliens.

Your job on these spaceships is to use the command line to steer your droids, while also disabling turrets, opening and locking doors, and otherwise making sure nothing unexpected happens to your machinery. If something does, you can use another of your machines to drag its broken carcass back towards the airlock, perhaps so you can repair it, and you'll find other half-broken droids the same way to expand your roster. It's remarkable how attached you'll become to these little units, who you can name and who make different bleep-bloop sounds.

As well as the compelling loop of improving your tools so you can explore more ships, exploration also fills out the story of this world, and where exactly all the people went. Excellent on every level.

About the Author

Graham Smith avatar

Graham Smith


Graham used to be to blame for all this.

Support Rock Paper Shotgun

Subscribe and get access to supporter-only articles, an ad-free reading experience, free gifts, and game discounts. Your support helps us create more great writing about PC games.

See more information


More Features

Latest Articles

Supporters Only

Rock Paper Shotgun logo

We've been talking, and we think that you should wear clothes

Total coincidence, but we sell some clothes

Rock Paper Shotgun Merch