Bomber Crew (opens in new tab) is an upcoming "strategic survival sim" about building and piloting bomber planes. At first blush, it looks like FTL (opens in new tab) set in World War II instead of space, but a few wrinkles distinguish this neat-looking game from its procedurally generated brethren.
The bulk of Bomber Crew's randomness comes from its titular crew. Deaths are permanent, so you choose a new crew from a slew of recruits at the start of each run, each with their own traits and equipment. Picking the right pilot and crewmates is crucial to successfully delegating tasks like manning turrets and repairing damage mid-dogfight.
Bomber Crew is also as much a sim as it is a roguelike. You can fully customize your crew, pilot and most notably your ship right down to the smallest details.
"Carefully manage everything from fuel, ammo, hydraulics and more in your very own physics-based bomber," developer Runner Duck says on Steam (opens in new tab). "Make it yours with a wide array of nose art and liveries, or design your own with the simple-to-use in-game tool."
Runs also seem to be more mission-based than most roguelikes. Rather than an ongoing journey where the goal is simply to survive as long as possible or, when the stars align, reach a final boss, you set out with smaller, specific objectives like destroying enemy units. Missions come with unique modifiers and dangers, around which players must build their crew and ship.
"Each mission is a high-risk expedition where danger comes from every angle," Runner Duck says. "Enemy fighters, flak guns, poor weather, low oxygen and an array of other perilous dangers await when the wheels are up."
Bomber Crew releases on Steam this Thursday, October 19. Check back for our hands-on impressions next week.