Sci-fi horror game Routine is taking longer than anyone expected


I get excited whenever I hear something new about the deliciously System Shock-esque space horror game Routine. And so over the past three years, that means I've been excited about it at least, oh, two or three times. Development has not been what you'd call lightning-quick, and Lunar Software hasn't exactly been generous with news, either. But the team said in its recent December update (which also just happens to be the second update of 2015) that things are going slower than expected, but they are still going.

"A few months ago [actually March, just for the record] we talked about going through the game replacing all of the placeholder art, we're happy to say that now we are doing the big second pass on all environments and core gameplay features," the studio wrote. "While the first pass put in a huge chunk of the game and removed all placeholder work, the second pass has been all about adding the small little details that really make the game feel complete. It has been a very slow process for us but we are working as much as we can to get Routine to a polished state that we are all happy with."

The update also answers a few common questions, foremost among them being why it's taking so long to finish. The answer is actually quite mundane: "Routine is our first project as a team and while we do have some previous experience individually this has been a huge undertaking where we have clearly underestimated a lot of the workload."

Included with the latest post are a few screens that I think are new—they're new to me, anyway, and they're not on Steam—and so I've attached them for your viewing pleasure. There is, as far as I know, still no release target, but you can learn a bit more about what's coming at



Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.