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Video Game / Affordable Space Adventures

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Uexplore provides you with a small, safe, cheap, and functional spaceship called Small Craft. Now you too can be a pioneer space explorer and discover uncharted alien planets at your leisure. Explore the wonders space has to offer and enjoy amazing scenery in never before seen worlds!

"But isn't space dangerous?" I hear you ask. Well, we have every contingency covered: nothing can go wrong!

Affordable Space Adventures is a sci-fi horror stealth puzzle game developed by KnapNok Games and Nifflas' Games and released exclusively for the Wii U on April 9th, 2015. Enticed by the promise of an "affordable space adventure", you've bought yourself a well-crafted Small Craft™ and have allowed yourself to be transported by the trustworthy Uexplore to a newly discovered planet to explore and map out your own plot of land. At least, that was the plan before the transport ship crashed and killed almost everyone on-board. Now you're forced explore a world hell bent on your destruction, dodging alien plant-life, security drones, lasers, harsh weather, and terrors beyond scientific scope as you attempt to send a distress signal back to Earth. But hey, at least your Small Craft™ is at peak condition...right?

We here at Uexplore announce the following tropes associated with Small Craft:

  • Blackout Basement: Quite a lot of the locations on the alien world are very dark and foreboding.
  • Brick Joke: Partway through the game, a Uexplore video detailing what to do in an emergency plays, with the Director of Safety then stating that Uexplore is so safe, the measures are completely unnecessary and she has been enjoying an extended vacation as she is that unneeded. At the end of the game, your SOS simply piles up with everyone else's as the Director of Safety is still on vacation.
  • Charged Attack: The emergency boosters. Given a few seconds to charge up, it can provide a few seconds of thrust at minimal generation of sound, heat or electricity outside of the electricity emitted during the charge up, and is occasionally the only source of thrust available when Interface Screw has disabled the thrusters of both engines.
  • Convection, Schmonvection: Being in a hot area isn't immediately dangerous, but will speed up the overheating of the Small Ship. Heat shutters can block this for a while, but only when used in conjunction with the electric motor, as the gas motor will create internal heat. Additionally, cutting the gas engine will cause the Small Craft to continue to emit heat for a while until it cools down, where electric emissions from the electric motor drop off almost instantly when shut down.
  • Co-Op Multiplayer: Can be played with up to 3 players working together to operate the same Small Craft. Player 1 on the Gamepad manages the levels of the ship's functions, player 2 flies the ship, while player 3 operates the ship's scanner/light.
  • Developer's Foresight: Each player has their own horn on the Small Craft they can honk. While this does nothing gameplay wise, it is still a temporary peak in sound emission, so it can be detected by alien artifacts.
  • Downer Ending: Your failing ship just barely makes it to a functioning emergency station, which takes your distress message and advises you to engage the ship's cryo sleep function as rescue can take several months. An explosion is heard as the cryo sleep engages, making it vague if it worked or has also malfunctioned. Either way, back on earth, your distress message is received and simply falls to the floor with that of several other players in the abandoned Uexplore building.
  • Eternal Engine: Complete with flamethrowers, heat rays, and explosives primed for detonation!
  • Everything Trying to Kill You: Nearly every device capable of detecting the Small Craft will react by destroying it if it does. The only real exception is the electrical gates, that react to the Small Craft generating excess electricity by powering up and opening.
  • Explosive Overclocking: Any of the Small Craft's functions have a maximum safe operating power of 3, but can be set as high as 5 if more power is needed. While overclocking the electric functions will just blow a fuse temporarily shutting down the Small Craft briefly as it reboots, overclocking the heat functions will cause the ship to explode.
  • Finagle's Law: As with many fears of space travel, anything that could go wrong, most definitely WILL go wrong, especially if it's your first time playing. This gives you a front row seat to your creatively grisly demise.
  • From Bad to Worse: Shortly after escaping an alien machine, the Small Craft's OS abruptly bluescreens and the system reboots in safe mode as the automated repair system is off-line. From this point on the various functions of the Small Craft begin breaking down.
  • Hailfire Peaks: One of the last areas the game appears to be a frozen tundra with volcanic activity, requiring careful management of both lethally high and lethally low temperatures to survive.
  • Hope Spot: The Uexplore Concern Communications Pods, distress beacons the mothership deploys on the planet to allow rescue requests in the unlikely event of an emergency. The first one you find is non-functional, the second one you find breaks down while using it, the last one you find works perfectly, but there is nobody at Uexplore to receive distress signals. Even if there were and they bothered to send aid, it's heavily implied that your ship's cryo sleep failed to engage, meaning you'd be dead before any rescue occurred anyway.
  • Interface Screw: While exploring a building, electromagnetic shocks will mess with the control interface, causing static and randomly changing the levels on the settings or temporarily disabling functions. Shortly after this, the Small Craft begins breaking down entirely, disabling features and causing the screen to become cracked.
  • Inventory Management Puzzle: What engines and what systems at what levels of power can safely get you from Point A to Point B when there is an automated turret that will shoot anything that generates too much of either heat, sound or electricity?
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall: A particularly bad systems malfunction of the Small Craft makes it seem like the Wii U itself has begun to malfunction and crash.
  • Leap of Faith: In some spots, the hazards are so sensitive, the only way to get through is to cut everything and free fall past them, then quickly restart the engine before the Small Craft hits some other hazard at the bottom.
  • Mood Dissonance: The loading screens and promotional material are filled with trustworthy words, pictures, and statistics that ensure your safety aboard Small Craft. But when you are actually at the helm, chances are your hands will be sweating into your game pad.
  • Mutually Exclusive Power Ups: The Small Craft is equipped with two distinct engines, of which only one can be running at a time:
    • The Fuel Engine takes a bit to start up, especially in the cold, but is otherwise stronger if not more unstable, equipped with a mass generator to make the ship heavier and give it more momentum to push objects. The thrusters don't function underwater, but the mass generator can make the Small Craft heavy enough to sink and light enough to float. Generates mostly heat and sound.
    • The Electric Engine is weaker, but smoother and starts up right away, unless in the cold in which it won't engage at all. With its anti-gravity generator and decelerator, the Small Craft can either stop on a dime in mid-air, or coast forward off of a small bit of thrust. The anti-gravity is capable of compensating for water, allowing full functionality underwater. Generates mostly electricity.
  • One-Hit-Point Wonder: Small Craft is this, just the slightest scratch will set it ablaze.
  • Scenery Porn: Some parts of the alien world are like this, while having some pretty amazing sights...
  • Scenery Gorn: ...while the rest is this.
  • Socialization Bonus: An option to enable Miiverse integration (when Miiverse was still running) is used in the ending when you send your SOS And it falls to the floor along with a pile of everyone else's SOS Miiverse posts.
  • Space Friction: The Electric Engine's Decelerator serves to either invoke or subvert this when paired with the anti-gravity generator. At full power, the Small Craft will stop on the spot when the thrusters disengage. When disabled, the Small Craft will keep going in the direction it was going when the thrusters disengage.
  • Stealth-Based Game: There are many alien devices that will destroy the Small Craft if they detect it, but the various devices detect different things, leading to careful management of the ships's systems and engines (the gas engine generates a lot of sound and heat, the electric engine generates a lot of electricity) to slip past.
  • Temporary Online Content: The online-enabled version of the game is now unplayable due to the closing of Miiverse and the aforementioned ending requiring its use.
  • Where It All Began: Mechanically; at the beginning of the game the only function of the Small Craft working is the Gas Engine thrusters. by the end of the game, the Small Craft begins breaking down to the point that the only function working at the very end is the Gas Engine thrusters.