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Dapra is a barren planet at the edge of settled space, surveyed only recently. The climate over most of the planet is arid and unpleasant. There is apparently no life on this world today, although ruins of a past civilisation remain. 

But Dapra has a high concentration of valuable minerals that have attracted the attention of interstellar mining corporations. Two corporations in particular, Nuvutech and Avuscorp, are in a good position to move in and exploit the newly discovered resources.

Nuvutech is an old company, mired in bureaucracy but with considerable financial power. They can afford to invest heavily both in mining infrastructure and in the military forces to preserve their investments. A mining colony on Dapra would be a profitable addition to their assets.

Avuscorp is a newer corporation, more energetic and more unscrupulous. Their methods are not always civilised nor, as many suspect, always legal. There have been violent run-ins between Avuscorp and other corporations over lucrative resources, and it looks like another one is brewing between them and Nuvutech over Dapra.

It remains to be seen which of these corporations will gain control over this planet and its resources.

Barren Planet is a turn-based strategy game. Players take on the role of a strategist, controlling a number of units that move around on a battle map, attacking their enemies in an attempt to control strategic locations or to wipe their opponents out altogether. A series of battles is linked together to form the full campaign, with the outcome of one battle determining what battle is fought next.

The game can be played by one player or two. A single player can choose which corporation to work for, with the computer taking control of the opposing side. Two players can play in hotseat mode, taking turns at the same computer, or in PBM (play-by-mail) mode, sending game turns to one another using disks or electronic mail.

Updated 15 days ago
Rated 5.0 out of 5 stars
(2 total ratings)
Tags2D, cga, DOS, Retro, Sci-fi, Top-Down, Turn-based


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Click download now to get access to the following files:

Barren Planet for DOS 121 kB
Barren Planet Manual 3 MB

Development log


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Very cool.

I was lucky enough to play this during development and in beta as @cyningstan put it together (a one-man effort!) and can say it's an excellent little retro strategy game. Works great in DOSBox on Mac. We played in PBM mode by sharing the save file back-and-forth over Discord, but the AI doesn't let you snooze through levels in single player mode, either. 

This is not just a retro game that looks retro; it's been coded with all the same environment and hardware limitations in mind of early DOS games; if you can get it onto a computer of sufficient vintage, it'll work. Easily on par (or better!) than some commercial games of the era.

Thank you!