September 5th, 2017

StarCrawlers offers procedurally-generated sci-fi dungeon-crawling

starcrawlers 1

Bloody typical. Yesterday, I posted up a story about a Kickstarter, in which I explained that we don’t report on Kickstarters much unless they’re really big or really interesting for whatever reason. Since then I’ve written, what, three stories about Kickstarters? And now we’ve got another one.

But that’s okay, because StarCrawlers really sounds rather good. The Juggernaut Games-developed title is a first-person dungeon crawler, in space, with proper turn-based RPG combat. And it procedurally generates missions for you using “Narrative AI”, which apparently doesn’t mean “slaps rooms together in random order.” Instead, it’s more about putting rooms, enemies, and traps together in a way that makes sense; raiding a corporate security station will be rather different to going on a rescue mission into a pirate hulk.

The idea is that you’re leading a crew of Crawlers, built from a variety of classes and skills. Crawlers appear to be a space-based version of Shadowrunners, insofar as they take on shady jobs for mysterious employers. Depending on your crew you’ll wind up in different situations and have different opportunities; if you’ve got a skilled hacker, you might be able to open up a shortcut to your objective. Conversely, a Void Psyker might be able to tell that someone is lying to you in one of the Choose Your Own Adventure-esque events, giving you more information and more options on how to deal with any given situation.

I like first-person dungeon crawlers and I like procedurally-generated games, so in theory this sounds like a bit of a winner to me. Juggernaut Games are asking for $65,000 to get StarCrawlers made, with stretch goals adding everything from more classes, through item crafting, right up to a customisable player ship. If it sounds like your sort of thing, you’ve got 30 days to plonk your money down.

StarCrawlers is also over on Steam Greenlight, seeking votes to get it onto the service.

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  • Tim McDonald

    Tim has been playing PC games for longer than he’s willing to admit. He’s written for a number of publications, but has been with PC Invasion – in all its various incarnations – for over a decade. When not writing about games, Tim can occasionally be found speedrunning terrible ones, making people angry in Dota 2, or playing something obscure and random. He’s also weirdly proud of his status as (probably) the Isle of Man’s only professional games journalist.