Dark Matter is a 2.5D side-scrolling survival horror game, set in a derelict spaceship besieged by a sinister alien presence, and infested with deadly parasites. As the Ensign, you must explore fetid hallways and abandoned facilities, scavenging for parts and blueprints, expanding your arsenal to up to four deadly weapons and freely...
User reviews:
Mixed (159 reviews) - 41% of the 159 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Oct 17, 2013

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About This Game

Dark Matter is a 2.5D side-scrolling survival horror game, set in a derelict spaceship besieged by a sinister alien presence, and infested with deadly parasites. As the Ensign, you must explore fetid hallways and abandoned facilities, scavenging for parts and blueprints, expanding your arsenal to up to four deadly weapons and freely customize each to fit your combat style against intelligent, reactive enemies. Dark Matter delivers a hard-hitting take on the survival horror genre in deep space, with a heavy emphasis on tactical combat and exploration.


Out of breath, you run into the door, slamming against its cold metal surface. The clicking of scuttling claws recedes into the distance, swallowed by the pitch black oblivion behind you. You know better than to feel safe. There are too many infested at your back, and another blank metal door ahead. With a quick reflex you check your ammo supplies, and slot a fresh magazine into your shotgun. With a quicker prayer, you flick the switch and open the door. The metal jaws open on endless night you don’t dare pierce with your flashlight, not to disturb those things that live in shadow. By the pale bioluminescence that washes up from the floor grates, you piece together the picture of a corridor, and what could be a stretch of exploding pods. Just beyond, the silhouette of a fully grown crawler stirs.

Grinning in the dark, you turn on the weapon’s flashlight, and point it straight down the corridor. Predictably, the blisters swell up to full irritation, ready to explode at the slightest touch. The crawler turns to hiss at you, instantly aroused by the light, and your presence. In your mind’s eye, it dumbly rushes forward into the blister pods to kill itself, saving you precious ammo.

It takes a precious moment to adjust to reality when the sleek shape crouches and jumps towards you instead. There is time for just one panicked shot before the inevitable flight, as you run for your life, barely keeping ahead of the claws slashing for you. In a moment of adrenaline-fuelled inspiration, you slam the wall panel as you retreat past the chamber’s door. The heavy, powerful mechanism smoothly slices the crawler in half just before the critter can reach and disembowel you. There is no time to congratulate yourself, as you hear a familiar hissing from above...

Key features:

  • 14 levels in a gritty tale of deep space survival
  • 4 weapons, and 4 ammo types. Elemental ammo effects that allow you to freeze, dissolve or set fire to your enemies.
  • Three craftable upgrades to customize your weapons.
  • Collect scrap and alien resources to craft your own tools and health packs.
  • Invest in the weapons and upgrades you prefer, develop your own combat techniques.
  • Non-linear exploration and storytelling with complex enemy AI that reacts to the player’s actions and tactics.
  • Light and darkness are integral parts of gameplay, not just visual touches.
  • Uncompromisingly real-time lights and shadow casting for spine-tingling moments of pure, darkness-fuelled terror.
  • Clean, hand-painted textures and custom shading techniques are combined in a unique visual style.
  • Dynamic soundtrack that adapts to gameplay circumstances.

System Requirements

Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    • OS: Windows XP
    • Processor: Intel Core Duo Processor (2.4 GHz or better)
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Shader Model 3.0 compatible videocard, 256 MB nVidia or ATI graphics card
    • Storage: 1 GB available space
    • OS: Windows 7 or 8
    • Processor: Intel Core I5 or higher
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: nVidia Geforce 460 series or better, Radeon HD5450 or better; 512 MB or higher
    • Storage: 1 GB available space
    • OS: OS X 10.5 or later
    • Processor: Intel Core Duo Processor (2.4 GHz or better)
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Shader Model 3.0 compatible videocard, 256 MB nVidia or ATI graphics card
    • Storage: 1 GB available space
    • OS: OS X 10.5 or later
    • Processor: Intel Core I5 or higher
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: nVidia Geforce 460 series or better, Radeon HD5450 or better; 512 MB or higher
    • Storage: 1 GB available space
    • OS: Linux Ubuntu 10.04 or later
    • Processor: Intel Core Duo Processor (2.4 GHz or better)
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Shader Model 3.0 compatible videocard, 256 MB nVidia or ATI graphics card
    • Storage: 1 GB available space
    • OS: Linux Ubuntu 10.04 or later
    • Processor: Intel Core I5 or higher
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: nVidia Geforce 460 series or better, Radeon HD5450 or better; 512 MB or higher
    • Storage: 1 GB available space
Customer reviews
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Mixed (159 reviews)
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125 reviews match the filters above ( Mixed)
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
7 of 7 people (100%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
5.3 hrs on record
Posted: September 24
It's been almost 3 years since the release, but all the bugs and the poor controlling are still here. This stuff is cheesy and half-baked and has nothing worth anyone's time about it.
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Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
244 of 252 people (97%) found this review helpful
4 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
4.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 17, 2014
I want to recommend this game. I really do. It pains me not to. This game was fun to play, and had a very interesting story to tell. But ultimately, the game is just... incomplete.

I'd find locked doors with enemies on the other side that I thought would have to be backtracked later. I had mission objectives that I couldn't complete yet, and thought I'd loop around to it. I'd see undiscovered areas on the minimap that I thought would reopen later. But ultimately, none of it amounted to anything. It was just incomplete.

As a game, it was fun. I'm sure the developer is just as miserable about this as we are. Dark Matter could have been amazing, but he just didn't manage to get enough kickstarter funds to make it happen. I feel for him, and I do actually hope you readers buy this game, if only to support a potential sequel. But at face value, upon completing this game, can I recommend it? With a heavy heart... no.
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113 of 124 people (91%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Not Recommended
7.2 hrs on record
Posted: January 22, 2014
The chilling introductory narrative was what really drew my interest in the game, but indeed like many reviews say, it's sadly not a particularly good game. Most of this has to do with it being incomplete; what you do have is a bit light, if shallow, in substance and ends rather abruptly before it gets anywhere particularly interesting and memorable.

With another year or two in development, this would have really come around to be a good, memorable title. It set the stage for an engrossing sci-fi horror story. I was most impressed with the narrative. I was drawn in. Almost enamoured. But overall I felt rather let down, even after the ending sequence was later added to the game as a free update.
Perhaps they can give it another shot in the future, or this would translate better as a book.

Alien design, sound, and visuals - was all fairly average. But I won't really get into it - upon some reflection, I don't really know if this is even worth reviewing, considering it's not clearly not a finished, or ready, product. And with that said, it's probably not worth buying or spending time on. It's a real shame I am saying this.

If you haven't already, stop and take a moment to enjoy what I consider to be the best part about this game - the opening cinematic trailer, right here on Steam. Then move on and look for something else.
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88 of 92 people (96%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Not Recommended
3.5 hrs on record
Posted: January 6, 2015
I find it slightly offensive that this is being sold as a complete game. You get the gernade launcher and your on a mission to do something to proceed the story and the game suddenly ends when you enter a door out of no where. You don't even get to use the gernade launcher except to access the magic end game door. It is very obvious that the game is not intended to end here but for some reason they just end it and released the game.
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50 of 54 people (93%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
8.7 hrs on record
Posted: January 22, 2015
This little gem had a lot of potential but it's not finished.

I normally don't like side scrollers much but this one appealed to one of the niche styles of 2d scrollers I can enjoy, and when I got it, it was pitched as a full game, but it is not. It is part one of a series of games that was abandonned before this one was even sold, meaning the full game being advertised was already canned before it went on sale.

It's still an interesting play and can have a little fun playing it, but it's short, and like I keep re-iterating, it's not finished.. From the very beginning it starts foreshadowing an ending you will never reach, a move up through the ship toward the command section that never gets completely out of engineering, so it's part 1 of a 4 or 5 part story that barely gets started.

They came around, due to the outrage on the forums and eventually put in a super-brief, cinematic excuse for an ending, but it's still not what was advertised and does nothing to bring a conclusion to the story that the game starts.

I want to like it, but all I can feel about this game is ripped off.

At less than $5, I'd say go ahead and give it a try if you can like this sort of game, but more than that is horribly over priced for this short teaser of a game that never will be.
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62 of 73 people (85%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Not Recommended
1.8 hrs on record
Posted: June 19, 2014
"Where is the promising atmosphere/game?"

Dark Matter could've been a great sci-fi 2.5D sidescroll shooter adventure, but it just isn't.

+ nice graphics
+ nice lightning
+ okay sounds
+ the idea

- the implementation
- movement & shooting is clunky
- bad alien character "look"
- missing atmosphere
- camera perspective too close
- no spoken/audio logs
- the look of the interfaces
- story absolutely didn't catch me
- have a look into the forums (before buying) ;)

I just don't want to play any longer, although I am a big sci-fi & sidescroll shooter fan!
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41 of 43 people (95%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
11.1 hrs on record
Posted: June 7, 2015
I give this one a rating of .25$ or less as of 2015/6/7, pick it up in a several games for a dollar bundle.
tldr: the game is under developed
the good:
+unique react to light enemies/environment
+potential for a good story
+depressive voiced ai narrator
+crew logs
+some of the larger rooms have good 3d atmosphere and detail

the neutal:
you act on a 2d plane in a 3d environment, there are several spots where it would have been good to include a shoot outside your plane rail shooter like dynamic to get background enemies
there are a few areas where some trivial stuff rolls out of your plane into the background where you cant get to it, slightly annoying, nothing important enough to be game breaking though, and otoh helps establish the environment as 3d.

the bad:
-the game was never truly completed, they patched in an end sequence on an incomplete game due to customer complaints about the game being incomplete
-abandoned by the dev, waited over a year before playing in hopes of more patches but it seems like this is it, this is also a good example of why not to support early access games, once they have the money there is no reason to further develop, instead let them take out a loan, bring a full product to the table, and have the quality of the product determine whether they profit.
-4 weapons one of which you barely have a chance to use
-the opening/ending cut scenes just don't tie into the game well, they are about energy based beings of light that you never run into in game, whereas the playable game is mainly about making it past various flesh and blood aliens to flip various switches.

note: I am an explorer type not a speed runner, I doubled back a lot during the game, also I leave games running while afk a lot so you are better off checking other reviews as far as game time
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36 of 37 people (97%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
20.1 hrs on record
Posted: October 3, 2014
After purchasing this game and getting close to the end -- it came to light that the end doesn't exist -- most of the weapons you see in the game aren't accessible and after a bunch of backlash the developers admitted that they ran out of money and only finished a third of the game... So if you want to play 'episode 1' with no episode 2 or 3... buy away...
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53 of 66 people (80%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Not Recommended
4.8 hrs on record
Posted: December 22, 2013
v. 1.1: I'm sad that this is not the full game, slightly overpriced for a 4 hour gameplay game, I encounter some bugs during gameplay, untested game pushed for release makes me lose hope on any future sequels of current game.
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33 of 34 people (97%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
4.9 hrs on record
Posted: June 11, 2015
This game is incomplete. The store description gives absolutely no indication of this, but basically the developer ran out of money, and decided to publish a game that is only about one third done. Don't purchase this, at any price, unless the developer actually finishes it with the money he was able to trick out of people like me.
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Recently Posted
1.0 hrs
Posted: October 5
OK I'm not usually into platform genre games but this is one of the good ones 9/10 the only complaint is the graphics are a little tacky but you do get a good feel for the game and the game play is user friendly also for those who are new or inexperienced to this genre its easy to get into plus there's a tutorial in the beginning as-well.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
2.0 hrs
Posted: September 2
This is that kind of games, which adds a "linux support" just because it works on 1 of 10 linux machines. It's not a support, it's luck and bad code.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Cyborg Zombies
5.1 hrs
Posted: July 3
Well, well. This game is absolutly fried tripe. It bills itself as a "survival horror" which immeadiately sets of a few alarms because I dont like survival horror games. But, if this is a survival horror the sonic is an epic open world rpg.

The survival elements are a complete joke I only died twice both time because i got blown up through a door. Theres no survival challenge because you get so much currency i always had atleast 10 medkits on me and enough ammo to throw a texan wedding. Its hard to feel like you're in a desperate situation when you can just crack off a medkit everytime you scrape your knee.

Now horror. Websters dictionary defines horror as "the quality of something that causes feelings of fear, dread, and shock : the horrible or shocking quality or character of something". And this game does not cause feelings of fear or dread. It doesn't cause dread because there no sense of anticipation because all the monsters walk around so ♥♥♥♥ing loudly you know where they are at all times. And there's no sense of fear because how can you be scared of something when you're packing a ♥♥♥♥ing grenade launcher.

It's not all bad though. I do appreciate the fact that monsters dont respawn because it gives a feeling of progression. There is a lot to explore which is nice even though all exploring gets you is currency which can be used to buy a metric crap ton of health and ammo.

Now for a couple of nit picks. The footsteps of the protagonist are very loud, which can start to grate a bit. The map is borderline useless. And the shotgun whilst being your most useful weapon is a bit whimpy. And your character when sprinting get tired fast and makes really weird gasping sounds. However, if you jump constantly while sprinting you'll never get tired and you move so fast the game cant keep up.

All being said i cant reccomend. This game is horribly boring. All the enemies either die in one hit or spend all day spounging bullets. The only saving grace to be found is that it's incredibly short. So you wont waste too many neurons playing through this garbage.
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2.3 hrs
Posted: June 3
This game is just a very bland Metroidvania game that is clearly unfinished.

Level designs are all identical mostly and sound design is sometimes missing or is just the same exact effects which gets annoying as hell! Menu interface is very clunky as well as the controls with wierd aiming. The crafting system feels very lazy since everything has the same resources and very few weapon upgrades that have the same exact upgrades as others.

Biggest issue is this game is filled with bugs and its just insane how this is a full release. Save stations won't work, getting hit for no reason, random "power off" messages keep popping up that annoys the ♥♥♥♥ out of you and gets in the way of certain objects in the game, and I hear other people not being able to finish the game because of the bugs.'

Conclusion: This would've been an average Metroidvania game with a System Shock feel if they just fixed the bugs but they still haven't to this day. Please pass on this game... I'm only gonna finish this so I can get some achievements at least and thankfully I got this with a very good price on a sale.

Rating: 3/10
Helpful? Yes No Funny
2.0 hrs
Posted: May 15
A decent attempt at the sci-fi horror genre with castlevania and crafting style gameplay. Some clever use of light activated puzzles and enemies fits the ambience of the atmosphere. However, the game lacks real polish and ends up feeling hastily put together, with less of a true castlevania dynamic and more of a combative hallways feel. Good try, poor execution.
Still, worth a shot.
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4.2 hrs
Posted: May 12
Wait for the moment that you have to take a ♥♥♥♥. Squat, and ♥♥♥♥ in your hands. Rub your ♥♥♥♥ all over your face. Congratulations, you have experienced what it is like to play through "Dark Matter."
Helpful? Yes No Funny
2.4 hrs
Posted: March 26
I bought this game quite awhile on sale and it was well worth the small sum I paid. You should not try to compre it to todays more modern and much more expensive games. Its just a fun game that can be enjoyed especially after you start getting frustrated trying to get them 50 dollar games to play correctly on your system.
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Two Clicks
24.9 hrs
Posted: March 24
VERDICT: Dark Matter is a potential gem of a sci-fi themed story driven platformer. I mean it oozes style and class, something that most indies dont bother with. Unfortunately it died prematurely as a result of stillbirth, for the game was released unfinished due to a lack of funding. After receiving alot of bad press in the steam forums the developer revisited the game and gave it a hurried cutscene ending to provide minimal closure.

If I had to describe the game it has a System Shock vibe, with story similarities and exploration style even if this game is side-scrolling. If you've played The Fall then this will feel familiar. Its pretty short and uncomplicated but you will have to pay attention when you are navigating its levels. Some areas will need to be revisited when you have better equipment. The fifteen or so levels provide enough of a challenge with their varying their size and complexity which are populated with respawning enemies to keep combat satisfying. Basic crafting allows medical packs and advanced ammo types to be created.

Overall its a real shame the game is in this state because the core elements which were experienced, hinted at an excellently paced action game with a interesting story and enticing exploration, with a fair amount of equipment to interact with. What I particularly enjoyed was listening to the cold if sympathetic voice-over of the ships computer, guiding you on your journey to discover what happened during your time in stasis.

Dark Matter may fall short of what was promised though not through a lack of effort from the developer. I would dearly love to recommend the game but only consider purchasing if you are okay with it being essentially an extended demo, albeit a decent one and when on sale. Otherwise I would have recommended it wholeheartedly. Maybe one day someone will create something similar or complete the job. I hope so! :)

... More info below ...

01. GENRE: A side scrolling sci-fi themed quest-driven platform shooter.

02. SETTING: On board an alien infested spaceship in the outer reaches of space.

03. STORY/BACKGROUND: You are the sole surviving member of a spaceship infested with by a deadly alien race that has killed your crew and taken control of the ship. Awoken from statis by the ships A.I. [reminiscent of the classic System Shock games] you must set out to explore the shop, collect the equipment and weapons, interact with vital ships systems in the eventual hope of destroying the enemy.

04. GAME MODES: Would have been great to have experienced the full story-based campaign. It really just needed more levels.
+ What there is, is actually fun to play. If only for a short while.
- Single short campaign consisting of x number of joined levels.
- Unfortunately incomplete due to the developer rushing the game out earlier than planned. Likely to ruinning out of money.

+ Only the developer(s)/designer(s) know how their vision would have panned out. What there is of it hints of a fanastically designed game.
+ Starts of with nice small refined levels.
+ Beautifully drawn and lighted locations.
+/- Faced with harder enemies when revisiting certain areas.
- To much retracing your steps, if you get lost or lose orientation.
- Becomes a mess of criss-crossing routes to get to objectives.
- Interface doesnt do enough to help player remember where they have been. Causing some confusion. Despite having a decent mini-map.

+ Exploration is the game's best feature by far. I mean who doesnt love skulking across an alien infested ship alone right!?
+ Scavenging scrap from dead enemies and searching lockers adds another dynamic to crafting.
+ Weapons and equipment, upgrading and crafting.
+ Boss combat is satisfying especially with the heavy weapons such as assault rifle and grenade launcher. :)
- Simplistic combat inc: Wayward aiming, audio prompts.
- Terrible multiple enemy spawning, sometimes on top of you.
- Needs more interaction with the ship systems, terminals and dead bodies.
- More RPG elements for the character also would have been good.

+ A nice selection of different enemies with their own abilities.
- Im sure we would have seen more with a fuller game. Oh well!

+/- Okay if a little minimal. Enemies spawn and attack when your character gets to close, there is to light etc.

+/- K/M they work without issue.
- Targeting seems a little lacksidacical as enemies can reach you faster than you can align the mouse to your targets.

+ Along with exploring the ship and audio, its its best feature. The engine creates some smooth, colourful and quite beautiful backdrops.
+ Light auras and glow are used to great effect providing a dark, moody, sombre and somewhat eery asethetic.

+ Minimal but captures the mood perfectly.
+ Movement, firing weapons, squigging through alien environment are all impeccably done. Together they add up to enhance the overall aesthestic.
+ The dialogue expunging narration of the ship central A.I. is excellent. One of the best Ive heard in a while.

+/- The gameplay is fairly basic as you would imagine in a platformer. Despite it being an incomplete game the is just about enough to call the game a challenge.
+ Difficulty scopes very well.
+ The game is very forgiving as you auto-spawn if you die at the last save-point terminal used.

+ Well-paced.
+ Varied, in type and difficulty.
- Only one achievement didnt appear to work properly. Kill x amount of crab aliens can be done in a few minutes though by standing next to a few chosen spawning holes.

14. ENJOYMENT/APPEAL: Given its incomplete state I think that Dark Matter will only appeal to fans of the genre (dark sci-fi/lone platformer.) Those who fancy a cheap game on sale might also be tempted. What there is of it was incredibly fun, apart from getting frustrated a few times when I lost my bearings.

15. PLAYTIME/LONGEVITY/REPLAYABILITY: Don't expect to get more than . Ten - twelve hours is more than enough to complete the game unless like me you get stuck alot and have to retrace your steps frequently.

16. ONLINE PLAY/COMMUNITY: Its singleplayer only. The community has long since been assimilated into the alien hive! ^^

+ Nothing taxing for my Core i3/Radeon HD5700 PC. Low end PCs will be able to run it no problem.
+ I think I only suffered one CTD the whole game.

- Given the developer closed down dont expect any patches for the few bugs there. There is at least one game-breaking bug with an elevator that doesnt respawn if you die. If you dont have a previous recent save then youll have wasted alot of time.
- Expect no DLCs either. If they added some to extend the game I would definitely buy those however. Maybe Ill contact the dev!

A few times changing level/room will bring up a blank screen but the save system is robust and you can load manually.

20. VALUE FOR MONEY: Unfortunately unless you really want to enjoy the game for what it is I would not recommend getting this game even on a sale. There just not enough of it. However if the genre and game features are enough for you to want to try it there is a very good game here. At least those funds may help the developer with their next game. :/
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10.2 hrs
Posted: March 22
Avoid this.
Complete waste of time, dull mostly, repetitive and of course unfinished but I knew that, that is not reason for negative review.
But buggy as hell is The Reason!
Damn, I even cannot finish game because of one sealed door and yes they should be open-I checked on Youtube walkthrough.
So, last 10 minutes of game stays behind my reach...and last few achievements too.

Damn devs, you screwed this one baddly!
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