Spaceland is a tactical turn-based old-school inspired strategy game by Tortuga Team where players lead a team of space rangers to fight off aliens and discover the secrets of what happened on the mystery planet. Tortuga Team has another series, “Braveland”, which is also an “old school” strategy inspired game series. Spaceland is uniquely tough and makes your shots count every time that sets it apart from some modern-day strategy games. This is our Spaceland review for PS4.
In Spaceland, gameplay revolves around a team of rangers that the player controls in order to solve what happened on the planet. Each team member has an area of expertise, so choosing the right team to take into different levels is crucial when presented with the option. I expected it was going to be a lot like other strategy games I’ve played recently, but this is no XCOM but it does set itself apart by the management required to complete each level.
When playing each stage, I mentioned that making every shot count is imperative. Each character’s weapon has a finite amount of ammo. There were times when a character ran out of ammo and I found myself dead in the water. There were ammo refill locations on the map but they can only be used once, so I learned early on that I have to choose my shots wisely and which character should get the ammo. This also applies to health refills if a player opts not to bring the medic. Spaceland takes some real thought and planning in certain stages. I really liked this aspect as it provided an additional level of complexity with the already, in some cases, forever spawning aliens.
Each character has their own particular playstyle making each useful in their own way. I liked that each class has a particular skill with which I could level up with “chips” rewarded for completing a map. It got tough having to choose whose skill was more important because it costs more and more chips with each increase. At first, it was a no brainer for me as my first goal was to get Terra’s medic skill as high as possible since there was no telling when I’d need to heal a character.
Another complex feature is aliens. Each type has different weaknesses and strengths. Whereas some move fast and have multiple attacks there are others like this big red slow-moving one that can only be attacked from behind. The stage situations where I had to deal with many different aliens and find different ways to dispatch them efficiently to conserve ammo were really enjoyable as well as frustrating when it proved difficult. Nonetheless, I enjoyed it a lot.
The story did not feel compelling to me — not that a story has to be for me to want to play a game. Still, the story seemed very typical of crashing on an alien planet, gathering fighters, and fighting aliens. I didn’t feel driven to complete the game for the story but more so because I enjoyed the gameplay.
One aspect that I found lacking was the workshop. When I gained the ability to craft new armor or new guns I could only each item once. There are some characters like Terra and Barret who are the same armor class. If I can only make one Tactical Vest, I have to choose who can equip it. This aspect isn’t a majorly a bad thing but is part of the crafting system I did not like.
Spaceland is a fun tactical strategy game. It was not what I expected. There were aspects of the crafting I disliked, but I found myself loving the complexity that the game provides overall. I enjoyed my time shooting my way through some very difficult situations. Spaceland is already out on PS4 for $19.99. If you like strategy games this may be one you want to try out. If you don’t have a PS4 you can also find it on Steam.