TSG puts you in the middle of asteriod fields. Your goal is to either mine enough minerals or survive enemy attack long enough to pass each mission. This sounds simple, but it is actually quite complex while still being managable.
On the resource side, you have energy and minerals. Energy is provided by solar power stations and is used to power all created buildings. Minerals are mined from the asteroids and are used to build new buildings (as well as creating ammo for missile launchers).
The main building for most missions is going to be the mineral miner. This structure is where you gain minerals which are used to build up everything else (including other mineral miners). Watch out though as the asteroids do have a limited amount of minerals. Don’t let too many asteroids run dry or your supply of minerals will quickly disappear.
To defend your base, you can build lasers that have two different upgrade paths and missile launchers. There are a large variety of enemy units that each have their own unique strengths and weaknesses. You must use your knowledge of the specific types of ships to build the appropriate buildings for defense.
There are also support structures such as energy stores which increase the amount of stored energy (great for weathering large attacks which can cause massive power drains) and the repair station which builds drones that automatically repair damaged structures. These structures aren’t strictly needed, but they can mean the difference between success or defeat.
There is one final building: the energy relay. You can’t build your buildings just anywhere and have them work, they need to be in range of power. Since you won’t want to build power stations everywhere, power relays allow you to bridge the gap between power stations and other buildings. These can be a weak link however as each relay can only connect to a total of five buildings and if a relay is destroyed, the power flow is cut off.
Other than the energy relay, all the buildings can be upgraded. It seems that upgrading a building always produces a better cost/benefit ratio than simply building another matching building.
Not only is this game very well designed, but the visuals are quite appealing. Sure, the enemies may appear retro and the buildings are simple, but the backgrounds are great and the user interface is fantastic. In the reviews, someone mentioned that it should be put on XBox Live. I’m sure that a game like this would do extremely well if ported over.
Great work CasualCollective. I look forward to seeing what else you come out with.
What are you waiting for? Get out there and start mining those asteroids.