Rebel Galaxy Rocks PAX South 2015

Ever since the official announcement for Rebel Galaxy a few months ago, we've been eager to get our hands on the game. PAX South 2015 afforded us the opportunity to do just that, as well as learn more about what makes the game tick from industry veteran Travis Baldree.

Both PAX Prime and East have been aggressively swallowed up by corporate publishing giants to the point where establishing the Indie Mega-Booth became necessary if smaller studios had any hopes of retaining even the smallest of footholds at these events. Thus it was a massive breath of fresh air walking into the expo hall for the first PAX South to find an event that is, by and large, still in that blissful stage of being almost wholly focused on indie games.

As a result, this past weekend achieved two major things:

  1. Making an event affordable for even the smallest of development studios to give them a fair chance at showcasing their current or upcoming games directly to gamers
  2. Exposing gamers to a broader spectrum of games than basically any other convention will for the remainder of 2015

Much like the evolution of PAX East, I doubt PAX South will remain in this blissful state for long, but this year’s event was a slice of pure gold for all involved. Well, unless you walked into the whole thing assuming there would be massive AAA juggernauts, obnoxiously loud Riot-style spectator booths, or equally obnoxious lines for hands-on time or swag.

We jumped at the opportunity to meet up with a number of the smaller teams present both on and off the show floor, including the folks behind the upcoming Rebel Galaxy. A first look at the game follows, and you should also be on the lookout for our exclusive interview with Travis Baldree later this week.

Rebel Yell

At first glance, you would probably be shocked to discover that Rebel Galaxy has only been in development for under a year at this point. It offers a sexy little slice of sci-fi RPG gameplay with fair amount of depth and even more potential for replayability than you’d expect from a game being built by just two people. Mind you, it helps that the two people in question are industry vets who have a proven history of being more than capable of delivering highly polished and entertaining projects.

If you’re unfamiliar with Rebel Galaxy, I would have to say first and foremost that it doesn’t neatly conform to just one specific genre. Instead, it offers an interesting blend of strategy gaming, trading sim, RPGs and sandbox. A common thread running through all of this is the impact of player choice.

An example of this used during our hands-on session with Rebel Galaxy is that you might come across or learn about the existence of a planet suffering a famine. Important supplies are being delivered but you might opt to forcefully take the supplies and then sell them to the planet at an extreme markup. Doing so might have other consequences, but finding out what those might be can be a big part of the fun.

As one might expect, much of the gameplay in Rebel Galaxy will be randomized, so won’t really come across exactly the same scenarios in the same order once you’ve completed some initial missions designed to help ease you into some of the game’s core systems. While there will obviously be certain constants, expect more variables to pop up from one game to the next.

In terms of constants, one of the more obvious in the mix is the ship-to-ship combat. While it may have been somewhat inspired by Assassin’s Creed: Black Flag, I also can see hints of Star Trek Online and even that game’s main point of inspiration, Pirates of the Burning Sea. While the game is set in space, you won’t have to be concerned with full z-axis control which is definitely a part of where the PotBS and Black Flag vibe comes from. Positioning and larger broadside attacks also fit in there somewhere, but combat can also evolve into something far more complex as the game progresses should you choose for it to.

For more on Rebel Galaxy from PAX South 2015, we’ll have an exclusive interview beaming directly into your brains shortly. Or, for those of you who haven’t taken the android plunge just yet, we’ll also be sure to embed that puppy right here on Ten Ton Hammer for your viewing enjoyment. But wait, there's more! Skylatron will also be sharing her hands-on impressions of the game as we continue to roll out or coverage from PAX South.

To read the latest guides, news, and features you can visit our Rebel Galaxy Game Page.

Last Updated: Mar 29, 2016

About The Author

Reuben "Sardu" Waters has been writing professionally about the MMOG industry for eight years, and is the current Editor-in-Chief and Director of Development for Ten Ton Hammer.