fast travel games Today it unveiled the next first-party title, called Ghost Signal: A Stellaris Game. It’s coming to Quest 2 in early 2023 and we already have some working impressions for you.
Ghost Signal is developed in-house by Fast Travel Games, a roguelite action game The World of Stellaris by Paradox Interactive. In Ghost Signal, you will control a ship through outer space through gameplay that features combat, combo, resource gathering, and more. You can take a first look at the trailer above and more details in the description below, straight from Fast Travel Games:
Discover the wonders of outer space in this virtual reality action game. Set in the world of Stellaris, captain your ship to battle or befriend many alien species in your search for the mysterious Ghost Signal. Take part in dynamic space wars, encounter planet-sized creatures, collect valuable loot to conduct research, and more. Each journey offers new possibilities.
Ghost Signal is designed as a seating experience and the story mode is run by roguelite rides, with each level of running presented as a unique, random, diorama-like environment set in front of you. In each environment, your ship is placed in the middle of a stunning space scene, but the contents of each vary greatly. Some are head-to-head combat, while others see you discover new items and upgrades or talk to aliens via dialogue options.
You’ll play through multiple courses and encounter different procedurally generated environments, enemies, and items each time, altering your ship’s abilities with random upgrades and items that you’ll discover along your way.
When it comes to combat, you can switch between three different weapons to target enemies, but you will need to balance the choice of weapons and positioning. Some weapons are more useful at close range, while others work better from a distance. Missiles, for example, can have a huge impact on powerful enemies from afar, but they only have limited ammo at a time – you’ll need to use them wisely.
Between levels, you can choose to upgrade your ship and its weapons or equip items that modify the weapon’s behaviour, depending on your playing style. You’ll find different items in each run and play through a random mix of encounters. It’s these mechanics that see Ghost Signal join an increasingly large group of roguelites on VR platforms, but they also have some distinct elements that make them feel unique. A seating approach that uses diorama-like environments, for example, characterizes it as a quieter entrance and less physically demanding than other rogolettes, such as old dungeon or until you fall.
I played a short Ghost Signal last month at Gamescom. It was a tantalizing look at what Fast Travel Games has in store, but I’ll hold off on full judgment until I can play more. However, the environments were a highlight of the sci-fi visuals and work well in the form of dioramas. Likewise, the Hulk showed potential, but whether the game had legs will depend on how much fun it was during long gaming sessions and multiple runs.
I also felt that the control scheme was a bit at odds with the presentation – you steer your ship from afar, by holding down the trigger and moving your controller to point a small rod in the direction you want the ship to go. It will then follow the selected path to completion, allowing you to stack multiple paths in quick succession. It took some getting used to and left wondering why I couldn’t just interact with the environment directly, and connect with the diorama to decide which area I wanted to try.
All that said, Ghost Signal shows potential. Using the current Stellaris IP is an interesting decision and the diorama setting feels reminiscent of successful board games like Demeo. It will be interesting to see if Ghost Signal finds an audience and fills a hole in the VR roguelike genre when it is released for Quest 2 in early 2023.