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Video Game / Cosmoteer

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Cosmoteer is a starship design and simulation game created by Walt Destler. Based on an idea for a game he had as a kid, he attempted to create a pen and paper version several times before realizing it was too complex, and decided to instead turn it into a video game.

In the game, you can either play as a bounty hunter, commanding as many ships as you can afford (starting out with one, buying more using credits earned in-game) while you hunt down ships with bounties placed on them in Bounty Hunter mode, or you play as a ship designer with no limits as to how you design your ships in Creative mode.


The game can be downloaded here, free of charge.

This game contains examples of the following tropes:

  • Attack Its Weak Point: Ships in the game always have two kinds of prominent weak points; Control Room and Reactors. Losing the control room in the ship disables its thrusters and the ability to micromanage weapons, and destroyed reactors cause a massive explosion and often destroy nearby components and crews.
  • Kill It with Fire: Weapons like cannons or the ion beam sometimes light an enemy ship on fire. It will spread across the ship and destroy various systems and crews.
  • Made of Explodium: Destroyed reactors always cause massive explosion, so it's better to place reactors in the more protected area. The 15.3 update added bigger reactor types, which will cause a bigger bang when destroyed.
  • Magnetic Weapons: The railgun is one of the weapons ships can use. It has much longer range and more pentation power than ordinary cannons, but it also has to be charged by batteries.
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  • More Dakka: Since you can't upgrade individual weapons systems in the game except few exceptionsnote , this is the best way to increase your firepower if you can't afford/don't want to buy another ship - and as noted above, the only limits to this are your imaginationnote .
  • No Plot? No Problem!: There isn't really a story to the game unless you create one; it's just hunting down bounties of various ships. It's still very fun.
  • Non-Standard Game Over: In a sense - there's no Game Over screen at the momentnote , but it is possible to technically get a Game Over if all ships you control are destroyed, you don't have enough funds to buy a new one, and you're far in debt.
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  • Space Friction: It's in full effect. Spaceships in the game will lose its speed if you turn off the thrusters.
  • Stock Scream: When crews die from fire, you will hear the Wilhelm Scream.
  • Subsystem Damage: A Ship can lose systems like thrusters or weapons from sustained damage, but it still can fight and fly as long as its control room is intact.
  • Wave-Motion Gun: The Ion Cannon is a downplayed example - although it functions like one, it trades damage in return for no charge time, meaning that instead of having something akin to what you'd see on the Death Star, you have a beam that will keep chipping away.
  • We Will Use Manual Labor in the Future: Most systems need some resource to function, so crews must haul batteries or ammunition for each system... with their hands. There is no automated loading.
  • You Require More Vespene Gas: There are two resources in the game, credits and FTL fuel.