Just when I was running out of things to see and spaceships to loot in Void Bastards, developer Blue Manchu drags me back in. The System Shock-inspired shooty roguelike rolled out its first paid DLC yesterday, Bang Tydy, adding a new faction of robotic cleaners to the Sargasso Nebula alongside a generous slab of free goodies.
Among the freebies, there’s nine new ship types to explore, a new enemy type (the outpatient, a big floaty head that spits exploding proximity-mine bile) and a variety of optional challenge modes available free for all now. Previously there were few options to spice up the game beyond cranking up the difficulty or tackling it armed with nothing but a plastic foon, the even more rubbish cousin of the humble spork. Now the Workplace Challenges add a bundle of new ways to suffer that seem more inventive than just cranking up the number or toughness of enemies.
The paid part of the package adds the Tydy cleaning corporation to the mix. There’s three basic Tydy ship types, they also send out cleaning vans to tidy up other ships on the map, making them a new roaming threat. The good news is that those van-loads of cleaning robots technically aren’t trying to murder you. The bad news is that they’ve decided that oxygen is a contaminant and will try to suck it right out of your suit with their vacuum cleaners. Not instantly fatal—for once something isn’t trying to shoot or explode you—but it’s a new problem to contend with.
Play your cards right and you can unlock that weapon for yourself. The Whackuum isn’t hugely powerful, but it does let you suck slag out of mechanical enemies, or blood out of enemies to heal yourself. All the fun of being a Space Dracula without having to re-watch Lifeforce. I’ve got my fingers crossed that this is just the first of many little expansions for the game. Until we get a new System Shock, this Douglas Adams-tinged comedy vision of haunted space is my new jam.
The Workplace Challenges update is live for everyone, and the Bang Tydy DLC is out now on Steam, Humble and the Microsoft Store for £3.99/$4.99/€3.99. Void Bastards is also included in the Xbox PC Game Pass subscription, so if you’ve been playing Gears 5 this past week, you might already have access to it.