The Nimbatus is a mighty spaceship but it’s not much for planetary missions. It doesn’t need to be, though, because it’s got a drone workshop with all the parts necessary to build a creation big enough, strong enough, and weird enough to take on any threat the galaxy can throw its way. Nimbatus landed on Kickstarter the other day and it comes with a demo to give a taste of what’s in store, and while the size of the creation canvas is limited in this version you can still build an incredibly effective warship of destructive might to let loose on the swarms infesting the planets beneath the mothership’s orbit.
While Nimbatus is a shooter at its core, before you can start you’ll need to build your own vehicle. Parts come in many shapes and styles, with the biggest category being weapons, but guns don’t fire without energy tanks and thrusters don’t thrust without fuel. There are also shield generators, blank pieces to help define the shape of the drone and provide a bit of shielding, and even sensors and logic parts automate functions or even create the AI for entire drones with. There are a huge variety of options in the parts menu, but a few thrusters and some guns will get you started. And most likely dead within a minute, too, if you try to take on a planet with insect swarms. It takes a mission or two to get a sense of just how many guns and what type to bolt on, but once you get a sense of the level of firepower required you can tear through the demo fairly easily.
So far there are only three types of planetary missions, plus AI programming challenges and an endless arena. Destroy Transmitter is the most common mission, available on each planet, and its reward is revealing a bit more of the galactic map. Destroy Hives has you taking out five insect hives that pump out enemies in swarms, and clearing it earns a new Rare weapon. The best mission is Destroy Motherhive, not only because it’s the one most likely to give your drone a proper workout but also because you get to drill deep into the planet’s core. All terrain is destructible, although some rocks are noticeably less so than others, and you’ll need to burrow to the heart of the planet to eradicate the hive. The reward is an Epic weapon, and it only takes a couple of those for your drone to get strong enough to stomp all over anything the demo has to offer in a pyrotechnic display of lasers, bullets, and missiles.
While it doesn’t take long to bump up against the limits of the demo, it does a great job of showing off what Nimbatus wants to become. Building a drone isn’t just about making efficient use of materials but rather coming up with the most interesting way of doing it. The trailer below shows off a few designs ranging in power from “loose mass of stuff stuck together badly” to “terror dreadnaught”, but if you want to build your own head on over to the Kickstarter and play it for yourself.