"A real-time, class-based strategy game, set in an open world cyberpunk city, from the creator of Syndicate Wars."
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Scroll down to the In Engine Gameplay Visualization for a story preview.
Satellite Reign is a real-time, class-based strategy game. You control a team of four agents, each with distinct and unique abilities, collectively battling for control of a fully simulated, living cyberpunk city.
The game world is designed to facilitate emergent gameplay, giving you the tools and freedom to play how you want to play, so you can create strategies and scenarios that not even we had anticipated!
Customize your team with the strength to destroy your enemies head-on, or hack into their facilities to manipulate their infrastructure without them ever knowing you were even there.
Will you take down your enemies with brute-force? Covert espionage and infiltration? Or will you use propaganda to influence the citizens of the city and overthrow the controlling powers?
Satellite Reign will be released on Windows, Mac OS and Linux.
The world's governments are controlled by mega-corporations, democracy to the highest bidder. Society is structured for the benefit of those in power. The poor exist in the dark squalid underbelly of the city, while the wealthy swim in opulence and luxury on the upper tiers, and the vast middle-class are too comfortable with their lives of convenience to see the world for what it really is. Corporate police patrol the streets, brutally maintaining the status quo, all under the guise of keeping the people safe.
The time for change is now, as a mysterious organization rises from the slums of the city. They'll have to bribe, steal, hack and augment their way through the barriers between them and their ultimate goal...but what are they trying to achieve? To free the masses from the corporate stranglehold, or to take control for themselves? That, is up to you.
This is one big, open, living metropolis. The city isn't just a cool location (although it is pretty cool), it actually functions like a city; the streets are bustling with people by day, and controlled by criminal organizations by night. Power grids actually power the city, information and finances flow from one district to another, and you can use all of these things to your advantage.
The entire game-world is designed around emergent gameplay. Civilians, police and corporate soldiers will all react uniquely to your actions. Power conduits, communication networks and security systems are there for you to hijack, modify or destroy. Learn how the city and its inhabitants operate, then exploit them all to advance your agenda.
The city is huge and you can move around and tackle objectives however you want to. You won't be spoon-fed one mission after another, you'll be able to use whatever means you can to get to your final goal. Bribe scientists to advance your technologies, and kidnap doctors to augment your agents. Steal money from the banks to fund your war against the corporations, and exploit neural implants to bend the will of others. Or, try to take your objectives through good old-fashioned brute-force.
Distinct character classes give you total control over how you approach a situation. Different classes with different combinations of augmentations, gear and weapons gives you the ability to customize your team and your experience.
Not every problem is easily solved by shoving a gun in its face. Sometimes the situation requires a bit more subtlety, a bit more finesse. Try siphoning cash out of the corporate account, bribing a bank manager to “misplace” his security pass, or steal the identity of a corporate soldier to pass through security checkpoints unseen.
In Engine Gameplay Visualisation
We’ve had a quite a few requests to see gameplay footage, the dilemma for us being that it’s a bit of a chicken and egg situation. To accurately portray the kind of immerse, simulated and emergent world we want to create, we need to actually create it for reals! And that’s what this Kickstarter campaign is for, to create the game. We’d love to be able to demonstrate a mission played numerous different ways to sell the idea to you but that would require several months and a lot of money to produce. If we could do that we’d have the game half done and we wouldn't really need Kickstarter to get us off the ground. We need a right, royal Kickstarting!
So with that in mind, while we prepare for our final week's onslaught of updates (no spoilers, we want them to be a surprise!), we thought you might like to see the extended cuts and a few unused gameplay shots we created for the initial pitch video and how we imagine the game will play and look. All of this was done in the engine we’re using for Satellite Reign, Unity.
Gameplay Walkthrough #1
So part of what we think is really exciting about our game is the ability to tackle objectives in completely different ways. I thought this might be a good opportunity for me to run you through how 2 different players might use different tactics and load outs to achieve the same result in two totally different ways.
So lets say we have Dean and Mike playing the game. Dean is all about espionage and being underhanded and Mike [Why can’t I be underhanded -MikeD] is all about guns and blasting his way through. Both of them are about half way through the game and they are both wanting to get their hands on a prototype for an antimatter fusion power cell from a facility in the industrial district.
Today we are going to have a look at how Dean's mission plays out: Dean has spent a good amount of time hacking into banks around the city and has a decent flow of cash coming in. Most of his agents' upgrades have been focused on hacking abilities, stealth, and surveillance. He has paid off the manager of one of the CCTV stations in the district and is putting money into the intelligence network in the area too. Dean sends a message, about his desire to steal the power cell, to his intelligence contact and gets a reply almost instantly (money well spent).
“We have already had an informant infiltrate the security forces in the facility. She has discovered 3 entry points into the facility; the main gate, the side entrance, and a secret entrance around the back. The main gate and the side entrance have security details and the secret entrance is secured by 2 DNA sample security doors. The informant has found the names and ID numbers of 2 potential targets who will be able to bypass the DNA checks on those security doors.”
Dean doesn't want a big fight so he decides to take the double security check option. He gets the bribed manager of the CCTV station to scan the district for the 2 targets. He doesn't have the money to pay for the scan to be done automatically so he has to do it himself. Dean has had plenty of practice finding targets so he makes quick work of the scanning process. This is going to be too easy. Target 1: Dr J. Duncan was found wandering back home from the red light district. Stumbling through back alleys, he seemed a little drunk. Dean's agents simply walked straight up to him and the hacker jacked into his neural pathways and ordered him to return to their cloning facilities. Dean's hacker escorted the good Doctor home and used the facilities to produce a new clone and insert his consciousness into the new body. Easy.
Target 2: Professor L. Rammy doesn't seem to be as careless as the Doctor. He has 2 personal bodyguards following him around and seems to be sticking to the busy streets. Dean's agents tail the Professor for a while, hoping he makes a mistake. No such luck. Dean grows impatient and decides to make a move. The Professor has stopped at a noodle stand to get something to eat, giving Dean the chance to position his agents. His soldier is moved up ahead in case the Professor makes a run for it and the support agent down an alley off to the side. The assassin moves to the entrance of the alley and enters into stealth mode (Dean has upgraded the assassin to be able to stay in stealth indefinitely while he is stationary, so he can just sit and wait). The hacker moves around behind ready to herd the target towards the other agents. The hacker has been upgraded to allow for higher level neural hijackings but the Professor seems too paranoid and has upgraded his neural defenses even further. The bodyguards, however, are easy pickings. The hacker takes over the mind of one of the bodyguards and leads him down towards the the alley where the assassin is hiding. The Professor and the other bodyguard are confused but quickly follow. As they move past the cloaked assassin the hacker fries the brain of the controlled bodyguard and the assassin performs his “Stealth take down” ability on the remaining one. The Professor freaks out and runs down the alley, straight into the mess of bullets fired from the support agents silenced pistol. Dean only needs his DNA, a hand will suffice, the security door won't care if its from a living donor.
With everything he needs to gain access to the facility Dean simply needs to walk straight through the DNA checkpoints, pick up the power cell and walk out. Nothing could possibly go wrong.
Dean's agents find the secret entrance to the facility and use the DNA sample of the recently deceased Professor to gain access to the facility. All the agents are on high alert now, weapons at the ready. This is a restricted area. Being spotted will cause major problems for the operation so let's get in and out as quickly as possible. The support agent fires up her “Tracking Disruptor”, which scrambles the IDs of the agents so they can’t be picked up by any security cameras in the vicinity. The agents move to the second security door and the hacker, now in his new body cloned from the good Doctor Duncan, simply walks up to the door and gets straight through. The agent finds the power cell exactly where the intelligence said it would be, picks it up, and walks back around to the other waiting agents. This is all going too smoothly. They are all about to simply walk out the door when a single patrolling soldier walks around the corner. Dean knew it wouldn't be this easy.
The guard sees the agents and starts calling for reinforcements. The assassin fires a high powered shot from his sniper rifle but its too late. The guard falls lifeless to the floor but the call has already been made. They are coming. The door the agents used to enter the facility slams shut and guards can be heard running from the other side of the facility. The hacker moves quickly to the door and starts hacking it to allow for a possible escape route. The rest of the agents set up behind cover, ready to buy the hacker some time. 30 seconds, that's all he needs.
Four corporate soldiers run around the corner and open fire on the agents. The agents return fire and the soldier manages to take out one of the enemies as they dive for cover. The support agent uses her “suppressing fire” ability to spray bullets at the corporate soldiers keeping them cowering behind cover. The assassin takes the opportunity to throw an EMP grenade at the corporate soldiers, hoping that they have enough augmentations to disable them momentarily, no such luck.
Two more corporate soldiers trudge around the corner, while the assassin is exposed, both heavily armored and moving slowly. They both toss grenades at the assassin and manage to quickly take him down. He isn't dead but he needs to be revived by one of the other agents if he is going to get out of there. The support agent's suppression ability runs out and all 5 of the corporate soldiers are now firing wildly at Dean's agents. Dean's team isn't cut out for a big fire fight, but just as he is about to call the mission a failure, the hacker cracks the door and gives the agents a last glimmer of hope.
The soldier throws out a smoke grenade to cover their retreat as the support agent turns and runs for the exit. The hacker and the support both make it out the door and into the alley, both taking bullets in the back as they escape. The soldier runs for the door just as one of the heavily armored corporate soldiers emerges from the smoke and puts a bullet in the downed assassins head. The power cell was more important than getting the agent out alive anyway. Not everything went to plan but he has what he needed. Hopefully the assassin will learn his lesson for next time.
That’s just a bit of a look at how an operation might go down when using a more stealthy / espionage route. Our second player, Mike, has a more destructive approach to obtaining the power cell. Stay tuned for his attempt at breaching the facility.
Gameplay Walkthrough #2
Earlier, we saw how Dean broke into the facility that housed the prototype for an antimatter fusion power cell. He managed to get the DNA of a few key people and sneak in through the back door. The mission was mostly successful; the base was infiltrated and the prototype was stolen. The mission started to go south towards the end and Dean lost one of his agents but he managed to escape with the prototype, and the agents are expendable so losing his assassin was not a concern.
Today we are going to see how Mikes full frontal assault tactics work out for him:
Mike is about half way through the game, he doesn’t care how many civilians he kills, doesn’t care for trying to take the subtle approach and he knows he has the firepower to take what he wants. Mike is only interested in success, no matter what the cost. Mike has ransacked every military and technological facility he has come across and has cause as much havoc in the city as humanly possible. While he has almost no money and the majority of the population hate him, his agents are a formidable force of destruction. They are all kitted out with the biggest guns, the most resilient armor, and enough gear and abilities to make even the Heavy corporate soldiers sit up and pay attention.
As with Deans mission, Mike has heard about the prototype for an antimatter fusion power cell hidden within a complex in the industrial district. He knows where the facility is but not exactly where the power cell can be found.
Through his path of death and destruction, Mike has gained the attention of the underground black market dealers and has gained favor with a few of them. His first first stop is to talk to them and see if they have any information he might find useful when attacking the facility. As expected, they have plenty of information they are willing to part with... for a price. The problem is that Mikes insatiable appetite for destruction meant that he has crippled the economy in the lower levels of the city and he doesn’t even have the money to pay for any of the information available on the black market. No matter, charging in guns a blaze has been a pretty good tactic so far. Mike takes his squad of 4 killing machines to the entrance to the facility. No point in waiting for a patrol to come along. Time to attack!
Mike moves the soldier off to one side of the main gate, the assassin cloaks and heads to the other side, the hacker takes cover behind a propaganda tower and the support moves out into the middle of the street. The support orders his mech dog to deploy cover right in front of the entrance. The cover is upgraded with both heavy shields and a mini gun emplacement and the support pulls out his own mini-gun, stabilizing it against the freshly deployed cover. Both the supports mini guns spit death at the entrance to the facility. The 5 guards at the gate take a second to realize what is happening, giving the assassin enough time to de-cloak and take one of the guards down instantly. The soldier has the “AE: Heavy Shield Arm Augmentation” which allows her to extend a riot shield directly out of her arm. She runs straight for two of the guards, as they open fire on her and blasts them back with her super heated plasma shotgun. Neither are killed but both are knocked to the ground. The hacker takes out 2 security cameras in the area, making sure that no reinforcements are called in. She then deploys 2 drones, one equipped with a mini-gun, the other with a shield charger, and charges towards the 2 guards that remain standing.
Both guards see how quickly they were overpowered and retreat back into the complex. The soldier makes quick work of the 2 guards she knocked down and the entire team ready themselves to enter the front gate.
Mike cloaks the assassin again and sends him in to scout the area before rushing in. One of the guards that retreated in is calling for reinforcements, Mike has no choice but to use the assassins “Instant Takedown” ability on the guard, causing him to disable his cloak. The assassin jumps on the guard, sinking his blade into the targets neck. As the body falls to the ground 2 automated sentry guns spring into action. The assassin is caught right in the middle, he managed to stop the call for reinforcements but paid the price as both sentry guns rip into him. Mike has a short window to help up his downed teammate before he needs a fresh body to implant the assassins consciousness into. Mike orders the rest of the team in. The soldier switches to her rocket launcher and takes out one of the sentry guns with a single shot. The hacker throws an EMP grenade at the other, temporarily disabling it and turns her attention to the other retreating guard while the support agent runs in and redeploys his cover in front of the downed assassin and starts the reviving process.
Mikes sends both the soldier and the hacker deeper into the facility to chase after the last guard who has run off again. Cowards! The support and assassin will just have to catch up.
The soldier and hacker sprint around the corner the guard just ducked behind only to be faced with 3 more soldiers, and 2 heavy soldiers. They all open fire on the 2 agents but the hackers shield drone manages to soak up enough of the damage and allow them both to dive for cover. Mikes soldier throws a frag grenade, taking out 1 of the soldiers straight away. Still... 5 vs 2, this isn’t looking good. Mike decides on taking the “All or nothing” approach and uses the soldiers rocket launcher again to try and cause as much damage to the enemy as possible. The first shot hits one of the heavy soldiers in the face, turning him into a bloody mist. The blast knocks down 2 of the other corps and the hacker takes the opportunity to use her “overdrive” ability and the mini-gun drone starts pelting out bullets at twice the speed ripping both of the downed soldiers to shreds. Mikes soldier fires another round from the rocket launcher. The other heavy soldier is burned to a crisp but now the rocket launcher is out of ammo. At that moment the assassin arrives and uses his rail-gun to pop the head of the last remaining enemy.
Mike knows there must be more reinforcements coming now. You can’t make that big of a commotion and not expect to alert anyone. He splits his team up and gets them to all quickly search the facility trying to find the prototype. It’s a risky move, but it will take too long searching everywhere as a team. The team cover a lot of ground and manage to take out a few more guards on the way. All of Mikes agents have taken a beating but the support finally finds what they were looking for, and as a bonus the assassin has found some high grade eye augmentations and decides to take a few for later upgrades. The team all regroup and head for the front gate.
As Mike leads his team out of the facility he finds out his early cautions of reinforcements on route were indeed correct. 3 soldiers, 2 heavy soldiers rush into the compound and take cover positions, but they are not alone; a spider mech slowly marches in after them. This looks bad... very bad.
Mike fans all of his agents out and gets behind cover as the bullets start flying. Soldier to the left, assassin and hacker to the right, and the support deploys his cover in the middle. Mike is scared... and he should be. The corporate forces are wielding all sorts of powerful weapons, plasma cannons, high powered laser repeater rifles, and a pair of mini-guns. Mike goes to use his soldiers rocket launcher and realizes that he ran out of ammo earlier. He also notices that he forgot to destroy the sentry gun he disabled earlier, as it springs back to life. Mikes has almost no options at this point, so he tries something drastic.
The hacker throws his last EMP grenade at the sentry gun again, disabling it for the second time. The support uses her “Cover fire” ability and sprays the corporate soldiers that have moved to the left. They take cover and allow Mikes soldier to deploy her riot shield again and sprint straight for the mech. As the soldier runs at the mech it charges up its plasma cannon and fires at the hacker and the assassin. Mike doesn’t move them out of the way quick enough, the assassin is badly injured and the hacker is killed. Revival is not an option at this point. Mikes soldier has gained the attention of all of the corporate soldiers at this point and they pummel her with everything they have. She falls lifeless at the foot of the spider mech but Mike grins an evil grin. He knows his soldier has an augmented torso that houses a highly illegal, highly unstable mini antimatter reactor that will cause a catastrophic chain reaction seconds after his agents death. Mike makes sure his remaining forces are behind cover and squints as the blinding white light fills his screen. Ash and rubble remain of the corporate forces. Mike knows the assassin and the support won’t survive any more reinforcements attacking so he heads for the safe, dark embrace of the alleyways of the city.
Probably one of the the messiest situation Mike has ended up in, but in the end Mike got what he wanted too. New prototype weapon and some eye augmentations as a nice little bonus. Two agents down, but sometimes that’s the price you pay for power.