I took a month out from Deadrock to participate in TIGSource’s procedurally generated content competition.

I teamed up with a good friend of mine and we are quite proud of what we ended up with.

Dyson is a kind of RTS about taking over an asteroid belt. There’s even some procedural content in there that may be useful for Deadrock, so the time taken to write the game was definitely not wasted in Deadrock terms.

Here are a few screenshots:


You can download the game here.

All feedback gratefully received!

The official competition thread is here.

21 thoughts on “Dyson

  1. Lost Chauncy

    Really nicely done. The perfect ‘pick up and play’ RTS. Unfortunately, mine keeps crashing. I’m running the 1.01 version. Is there any info I can send that might help?

  2. Lost Chauncy

    That did it. No crashes so far in 1.03 (Thanks). I got annihilated by those crafty green seedlings, but look forward to beating them next time. This is a blast. I think you guys have really got something here.

  3. phuzz

    Hey, I noticed this game through rockpapershotgun. It’s so far successfully sucked up a good bit of my sunday 🙂
    Two things:

    1) why does the window have to be so small? It would be nice if I could maximise it.

    2) the controls took a bit of getting used to, I was expecting to be able to click and drag around the map, it does work fine once you’ve got the hang of it though.

  4. Alex Post author

    Hi starbane, this could be due to an assumption in the game that you have some sound hardware / drivers – is that likely?

  5. Andres Kievsky


    I am loving your game. I played it for about an hour last night.

    There are a few things that weren’t clear to me: what does “plant” do exactly? how is “ownership” of an asteroid determined?

    It’s also hard to understand what has happened in an asteroid once you control a few – has it been attacked? I couldn’t really tell unless I clicked on the asteroid and looked at friends vs. foes.

    Also, the controls are a bit awkward – I would like to be able to send, say, half of the Friends from one asteroid to another without having to count them – maybe shift+drag or something like that? The right clicking is pretty annoying.

    Otherwise, it’s a beautiful game and very addictive. Keep up the great work!

    – ank

  6. zerkalov

    Hi !!

    Thank you for your great “mini” game.

    Some nice features could be implement :

    – multiplayer !! with friend we want seed against us 🙂 !!
    – Map editor : the ring is great but … we need other map !!
    – limit the max range of move or establish zone of influence near the planet wich limit the move.

  7. Benji

    This game is awesome, it’s my favorite from the PG competition. Every time I get through playing one of the other entrants, I get this urge for Dyson time, so that I can get some real gaming in. I hope you win, and I really hope you keep updating this game!!

    Some things I would love to see in any updates:
    -Orbiting defenders shooting at travelling enemies (that way you don’t have to limit travel range of the ships, but exploring is a little more risky. You would also be able to set up a sort of defense perimeter this way).
    -Asteroids able to be toggled between two different modes: Multiply, and grow. Here’s why you need this:

    Right now, all asteroids do is multiply the number of your ships. This is perfectly fine, but once an asteroid hits the 32x limit (pretty quickly once it has 6 plants), it does nothing. With a ‘grow’ function, your plant power could be used to start upgrading the orbiting ships according to the core energy of the asteroid. The less orbiting ships, and the more plants, the faster each ship grows bigger. The reason I think you need this in Dyson is because I would love to see the individual statistics of each ship come into play more. It’s a big part of the PG, but doesn’t affect the gameplay all that much right now. I think this could really add some very interesting dynamics to the game. Depending on the starting makeup of the ship, and the asteroids it upgraded at, you could grow some large and very unique ‘capital ship’ type units, and it would all be built into the current dynamics of the game.

    I would poop my pants if this happened, literally. And I’ll send you a picture! I already can’t wait! 🙂

  8. Ash

    This game looks very curious, but unfortunately I wasn’t able to get it running. After I start it, window with “loading” message appears, but that’s it. It doesn’t respond to anything and doesn’t do anything. I do have .NET framework.

  9. sylverone

    This really is a great game. It has a very zen feel to it in its current, simplistic form, but I’m not against the addition of new features as suggested.

    The direction this is moving in seems very promising!

  10. Vman

    Good game, When you have an updated version please let me know 🙂

    I love the flocking of the ships, how they are pulled about by the asteroids gravity and I’m very curious to know how the AI for the ships work (Friend and Foe)?

    I managed to get it running on my work machine but neither of my home machines like it much (even with the .net framework and the patch).

    In an attempt to add some constructive criticism here are a few ideas:

    I honestly believe one of the games greatest strengths is its simplicity.

    You should look at ‘un-hiding’ some of the controls. Add a control console that stays on screen at all times and gives all of the info on the selected planet. Replace the right click drag system, which is not as clear or easy to use as it could be with some buttons on the panel. You could then add your additional features, such as some defensive abilities for the friends, all of which would be easily accessible from the panel as well.

    I like that you don’t have to mine or collect resources to build: The asteroids are the resources 😉

    But what is the benefit to the different makeup’s of each planet?

    Lovely game 🙂

  11. Alex Post author

    Hi Vman, you can visit the official Dyson website at http://www.dyson-game.com if you like and join the mailing list to be informed of new releases.

    In terms of the asteroid make-up, we’ll be emphasising that in future releases. The UI is under scrutiny as well and will probably change significantly.

  12. SPennLUE

    A very addicting little RTS. It was balanced and fair (and fun) the whole way through. The graphics and sound worked really well (well-done minimalism isn’t done often enough).

    The main thing I didn’t like about this game – which was more of a small inconvenience than a deal-breaker – was that there was no quick way to see the tree/seed stats of multiple asteroids at once. Having to mouse-over each one got a bit tedious. Maybe there could be a number near or in each asteroid after zooming out past a certain point?

    And not that it’s a big deal, but maybe some customization would be nice (choosing number of asteroids or teams).

    Finally, a multiplayer mode would be totally badass and make the game worth paying for.

  13. Kadayi

    Stumbled across this from reading RPS and I have to say it’s a lovely game. Well done. I look forward to further developments.


  14. Missouri

    First introduce me,I’m a student in SJTU,China.Dyson’s idea moved me .So I’m now programing a game much like 3D-dyson which is in the universe with planets and spaceships.The work is all by myself on Ogre engine.I have some question about how the game’s AI work like how to find a nearby plant or the only enemy on the cell?Could give me some hint please for I’m loving game design and program.Thanks very much.


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