Distant Star: Revenant Fleet Preview – Getting my Ass Kicked One Sector at a Time (And Key Giveaway!) (Ended!)

Gotta Defend The Fonz's Station!
Gotta Defend The Fonz’s Station!

In this video, I return to Distant Star: Revenant Fleet and its shiny new content-complete beta. This beta has new features, the entirety of the game’s dynamic campaign engine and a brutally punishing difficulty level (at least for me). What I found was a dang challenging game that never really lets up for an instant, ;) It was both fun AND stressful to play this, but I enjoyed my time with it, so I hope you enjoy the video.

Remember, due to the strike on my YouTube account, I can only upload these in 15 minute snippets, so if you want to see the whole thing uncut, head over to Twitch.


Also, the nice folks at Blazing Griffin have sent me two dozen Steam keys for the game! Want one? Then all you have to do is watch some of this video and, in the comments below (using a valid email address or I can’t send you a key), tell me either what you’d like to see improved with the game, or tell me how I can do a better job playing the game next time.

Looking forward to your insights! ;) Good luck!

Author: Brian Rubin

38 thoughts on “Distant Star: Revenant Fleet Preview – Getting my Ass Kicked One Sector at a Time (And Key Giveaway!) (Ended!)

  1. I’m not really a fan of the ALL CAPS dialog choices screaming at the player.

  2. You should put your ships closer to the enemy. You lost a station A probably because Kami didn’t fire her rockets at the top ship. You could’ve destroyed it long ago, then focus on the carrier.

    That is also a proposal to make a game better. Clearly show radius of different weapons. Also, it should be possible to repair ships by clicking on their icons at the bottom.

    1. Also, give me the key please. This game is just beautiful. I already love it. Would be nice to have some easier difficulty settings though.

  3. So far from watching, and please correct me if I am wrong as I have not played it myself yet, that the projectile weapons have a tendency to miss why you move. So perhaps adopt an always moving style to make your ship a more difficult target. The AI seems to keep sips stationary.. Also it appears that you can use the bigger ships to shield for you. pull behind one so the AI beings shooting at it, then pull out, take a few shots until it start targeting you, they pull back behind the friendly. This should also give the friendly a few moments not under fire to recharge shields a bit and for you too.

    I’ll watch more of your stream in a bit (at work)


  4. Hi Brian! The game looks promising. Can you put the action on pause and still give orders? Are there any difficulty settings?
    I think you could explain a little more while playing or give some other useful insight. It would make your videos even more interesting.
    I’m looking forward to get a key. ;)
    Take care!

    1. Hey man, this:

      I think you could explain a little more while playing or give some other useful insight. It would make your videos even more interesting.

      Is something I know I’ve got to work on, but I appreciate you bringing it up as I forget and get sucked into the game, which could be good or bad… ;)

  5. I originally thought your Run strategy was a good one but those last missions it well… failed. I can’t really tel from the video, but it seemed some of the enemy unlocks were due to advancement across the map. Stay put until you dealt with the enemy at hand…. similar to Xcom

  6. I’m always a fan of a bit more story but this looks pretty neat. How does this compare to something like S.P.A.Z. or does it? I’d love a key of course hehe.

  7. The game looks very nice graphically. Can you move more if you want to? It looked like the ships were just parked in space and hammering away at each other. I’d like to see the battles more dynamic. Remember the spaceship battle in Star Trek Nemesis or Wrath of Khan?

  8. Hi Brian!
    Long time lurker, first-time poster (at least I believe!) ;)

    Since most of the current comments seem to concentrate on how to play to game or the gameplay mechanics,
    I’ll comment on what I would like to see improved in the game based on this actual video viewing.

    Keep in mind, I’ve been following this game for a while and am looking forward to its release, having played many 2D RTS-style space games in the past (yes, including Conquest: Frontier Wars!) but of the many things that could be improved, especially visually:

    – The shield/health meters on the ships; those unsightly large colorful squares just rip out the immersion for me; I’m sure a more visually pleasing alternative could easily be found.
    – I LOVE the game’s visual style and graphics, but by God does the sector map (time in video 6:31) look dreadful. With so much thought seeming to have gone into the game’s visual style and flair, this map just literally falls “flat”, excuse the wordplay. As a counter-example, the map in Blackguards is a perfect example of a beautiful map that takes brings “into the game” aesthetically between travel times (albeit in a different time period than Revenant of course!)
    – Finally, just as a side note, flavor texts and/or proper naming of in-game assets could also help boost immersion here and there… Defend “Station A” and “Station B” ? Really? Need I say more? :)

    All that being said, I’m really nitpicking here! The Game looks amazing and very promising, and can’t wait to play it myself!

    Good luck on your next play through Brian! And… hopefully thanks for the key ;-)

  9. Well seems to be one of the games one has to play himself to fully enjoy :)) thx for the upload though

    1. oh i almost forgot i wouldnt mind a key :)) your gameplay was fine, this is a preview not a review so you dont need to be picture perfect in these kinds of videos :)) And now that im writing this i wanted to say i LOVE the podcast. Keep up the good work.

  10. Cool bean! The nebula effect made me smile. Oh, I guess an e-mail address would be good. tzircher and yahoo.com.

  11. I agree about the weapon radius showing…maybe a different color for close and long range weapons? This way you have an idea of what weapons would be effective. I only played a little of FTL, which was a cool game but does this game have the people resource management?

  12. This game looks pretty awesome. I typically only gravitate towards TBS style games, but I do love a good Space Opera style game.

    So while I was watching I was wondering if you have to keep moving in the fight in order to “dodge” some of the attacks. Any ideas on how distance and movement affect being hit or hitting? Or does it play into the fight at all?

    Love your videos. I’ve based many of my purchases off your videos. Sorry to hear about your trouble with youtube. Hope they can figure out a way to stop making life hard for the people who make them money. :)

  13. I liked the fx of the shields/missiles, though the beams were lacking somewhat. I didn’t really understand how the missiles fired though. Instead of banks on the ships, they usually seem to originate from a single point and turn 180 degrees to hit the target? The strike craft also seem to be able to fire behind them? Maybe that’s just me nit-picking though. What could really stand to be improved is the ship deaths. It’s always just a flash and 95% of the mass is gone. Might be nice to mix it up, sometimes the ship just loses power and flickers off; maybe an explosion shatters the midsection; maybe it loses orbit and falls into the backdrop.

    The tooltips could use a little more work. “Range: Very Long” doesn’t really tell me anything. I can guess that a range is “long” or not by eyeballing it. Any number, even if it is abstract would help. There could also stand to be more flavor text. The one paragraph blurb for the ships is functional, but the mission didn’t really explain the urgency for the armor tech secrecy. If the planet is just going to get glassed, force multipliers like better armor seems needless.

    I had some other thoughts, but saw the developer response on the video. I assume later missions will have many more ship choices? Brian though, you really seem to have some target anxiety. Clearly you intended on destroying targets one at a time but didn’t notice when your ships weren’t all hitting the same thing, so the target abilities took a long time to whittle it down. Probably out of your control, but you know part 2 was not HD capable?

    Still, I look forward to playing if there are any keys left.

    (Trying to repost, wordpress tech support says I should be good now)

  14. Was there no health indicator on the station that blew up? There might have been, but I didn’t see anything. Something like that might be useful.

    1. I don’t know if the Blazing Griffin guys have already read these comments or not, but I’d like to elaborate a little.

      Maybe give the players an option they can turn off or on where there is a little health bar beneath friendly, enemy (or both) vessels without having to specifically select each one to find out. It was kind of hard to make out in the video, but it looked like there was at least some (?) visual feedback if a ship was taking damage. Maybe step that up some. If a shield has been penetrated and the hull is taking damage, give some flames and plumes of smoke, and maybe little pieces that break off. It indicates to the player what is happening… and it looks cool. :)

  15. Combat just seems rather dull. This is sad since combat appears to be the meat of the game. Once engaged ships just sit there and don’t move other than the strike craft; no maneuvering at all. You can’t reposition to bring more weapons to bear or move out of their line of fire since every weapon has a 360 degree firing arc, bizarrely. You can’t try to outflank other ships to exploit their weak points since they don’t have any. Weapons for factions seem to consist entirely of generic missiles, generic projectiles, and generic beams.

    Where’s the variety? Everything seems so static and predictable. A ship on the brink of destruction can fight as effectively as one with full hull and shields, so nothing really changes a battle other than destroying a ship. How about some malfunctions and loss of capability as damage mounts? Perhaps some random misfires? Anything to spice things up.

    I realize this is a beta and my entire experience with the game is this preview, so I hope the game continues to evolve as time rolls on and addresses my concerns.

    As for Brian, you definitely need to focus fire on a single target! That one beam ship by station A took you aaaages to destroy. Concentrated fire should also help counter the repair spam. :)

  16. This is all great stuff folks, and I’ve got all your emails and such down so I’ll be sending out keys soonish! Thanks!!

  17. Hey everyone,

    Just wanted to say thanks for the feedback – it’s been passed onto the team.

    We rolled out a new update today which addresses some of the combat issues (sticky targeting and general rebalancing on the stats) – combat flow is much better now. We’ve still got a lot of attachments to add to the game and these will help add more variety to combat as well.

    If anyone has any questions about the game, feel free to ask.

    1. Awesome that you guys are listening to the feedback here. Great looking game so far! I can’t wait to get my hands on it :)

  18. Game looks very cool; seems to have an FTL vibe to it but with more action.

    It looked like you weren’t having your ships concentrate fire very effectively and they didn’t seem to move to combat ranges on their own. So I guess that’s a comment about what you can do better and about how the game could be improved. But it’s hard to tell what’s really happening when I’m not at the controls.

    Anyway, keep up the reviews. This is a great place to come and see what’s up and coming in the space genre.

  19. Honestly, what I like is that the game is still getting worked on because I recognized it from an earlier SGJ video. I’m normally not much of an RTS guy, but I am a rogue-like guy. The concept of fast, varied sessions to learn with appeals to me. I’m somewhat wary of the current difficulty, but I’m not sure how much because…

    I’ll repeat xoiben’s call for insight. I tend to ignore blind reactions in favor of LPs that educate me. (Videos from the underrated NakaTeleeli and the even more underrated Phedran have taken off a decent chunk of my life.) I can’t always understand if a game is hard due to its intended difficulty or its feedback until I know the player has enough experience and willingness to tell me. It’s all dancing colors and cursing without a decent grasp of the rules. ;)

    Another option could be to recommend LP videos from other creators which do have such insight within the contents of the video/descriptions. SGJ could become the Macy’s Santa of informative space game videos. =)

  20. Thank you Brian and Blazing Griffin for the game key!! Much appreciated, downloading now.
    Can’t wait to try it out myself.

    Good luck putting the finishing touches on the game!

  21. I think I would like to see a greater variety in the weapons. Not sure everything is displayed here, but SPAZ has a cool system of phasers, cannons, missiles, and bombs all with different damage models. Anyway, are all the keys gone?

    1. Welcome man, and yeah, those were like, weeks ago. ;) Keep in mind also that this is earlyish in the game, and there are indeed more weapons to buy in the final version, based on what I’ve seen so far.

  22. While the game is really great from what it looks I tried it at a friends and from what i’ve seen there some problems.
    The game doesn’t really explain how everything goes. Newbs will try the hit and run tactic with assault ships which works really well in the BEGINNING. In the later levels you won’t get around using slower ships and the skill required to coordinate all those ships is extremely high. However the solution to this – the tactical mode – works really well. It’s just that it can be overlooked easily if you haven’t played the game.
    Oh and pirates OP. Yes they don’t have shields but i swear to god they are like the zergs.
    But apart from the pirates the only problem from the gameplay I see is that defence missions in the beginning are super annoying since you can destroy the enemy but you seldom can prevent the target from being destroyed. This is especially true for defence missions with multipple targets since you need way to long to get to the other obecjtive if it’s under attack

    1. Oh, I’m sorry, this giveaway ended ages ago, sorry I didn’t make that clearer.

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