Ring Runner combines the fast-paced action of space combat with the rich story and skill variety of an RPG. Trek across the universe in a 30 hour long story-driven campaign based on a companion Sci Fi novel, or challenge 6 scenarios alone, cooperatively, or competitively through local or online multiplayer.
User reviews: Very Positive (314 reviews)
Release Date: Jul 9, 2013

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Recommended By Curators

"Ring Runner: Flight of the Sages is an enjoyable top-down space shooter, with great in-depth customization and very few major flaws. Worth a play!"
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About This Game

Ring Runner combines the fast-paced action of space combat with the rich story and skill variety of an RPG.

Trek across the universe in a 30 hour long story-driven campaign based on a companion Sci Fi novel, or challenge 6 scenarios alone, cooperatively, or competitively through local or online multiplayer.

Choose from 60 customizable hulls that act as templates for 400+ wildly-varied skills. Level layouts, backgrounds, and AI enemies are all procedurally generated, yielding billions of challenges.


You awake from unelective brain surgery to find key memory centers of your brain missing. They've been replaced by Nero, your peanut-butter-craving neuro-Hud, who'll guide you through the universal super-highways known as The Rings. If you survive fiery trench runs, flail-swinging gladiators, and feuding trash moguls, you'll discover that you're a Sage, capable of rewriting the physical laws with your thoughts.

But beware The Extinguishers!

In the interests of universal order, The Consortium of the Inner Rings has slated the Sages for extinction, plunging the cosmos into a war with casualties measured in galaxies. You'll play a pivotal role in this terrible battle... if you can find out who you are.

Big Picture


  • 400+ Unique Abilities - many inspired by fantasy games
  • 60 Fully Customizable Ships - five archetypes, with many hybrids to choose from
  • 30 Hour Story-Driven Campaign - universe based on a companion Sci Fi novel
  • 6 Scenarios - Play alone or coop and competitively through online multiplayer
  • Infinite Challenges - The level layouts, backgrounds, and AI enemies are procedurally generated
  • Reliable Multiplayer - drop-in and drop-out of games with seamless host migration; no waiting in lobbies
  • Local Coop - "Duo" ships allow a friend to act as a copilot, usable in multiplayer modes and second half of campaign
  • Full Soundtrack - 20 tracks of music and hundreds of original sound effects
  • Classic Arcade Inspired Mini-games - earn Sage abilities by conquering challenges in The Subrostrum
  • 30 Prebuilt Ships - jump straight into the action with these handcrafted hulls


Challenge these Scenarios through single or Online Multiplayer:

  • Space Defense League - League of Legends/DotA in space! Complete with cruisers, bosses, swarms of drones, and waves of power up crates
  • Zombie Survival - Rack up the kills before the hordes of space zombies feast on the atoms of your brains; defeat custom bosses to gain Super Sage abilities!
  • Wave Survival - Survive waves of procedurally generated bosses, swarmers, and standard ships
  • Gladiator Mode - Run a gauntlet of procedurally generated bosses
  • Spire Battle - Fast-paced base vs base battles
  • Deathmatch - No teams; it's every Sage for his or herself

Steam Workshop

Press Quotes

"Clearly had a little TLC put into it. The writing is solid by video game standards, the graphics are solid by indie game standards and the game’s fun by any standard."

- Indiestatik

"At its best, it takes the very idea of a twin-stick shooter, shakes it by the collar and shrieks, 'Space is enormous and deserves more than lasers and lightshows – let us strive for the beauty and variety that the stars deserve.'"
- Rock, Paper, Shotgun

"Bites off way more than it can chew, and it’s endlessly endearing for it."
- GiantBomb

System Requirements

    • OS: XP, Vista, 7, 8 (32 or 64 bit)
    • Processor: 2 GHz
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Graphics: XNA Hi Def Profile Compatible GPU
    • DirectX: Version 9.0
    • Hard Drive: 250 MB available space
Helpful customer reviews
65 of 70 people (93%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
166.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 7, 2014
This is literally my favorite game ever. (Yes, I have played a ton of games from many genres.) It is so because of its unique combination of story, humor, space, RPG style, gameplay variety, strategy, and newtonian (correct) physics. The game is completely unlike anything I have ever before played or since. I have now played almost 250 hours, and it is the only game I have ever purchased twice just in case anything ever happened to steam I would not want to lose this game. I also really appreciate how clean the game is—that when my children play it I won’t have to worry about swearing or anything like that.

The main story is well written and takes about 30 to 40 hours to complete. Although it is primarily space combat, the game also features circuit racing, stealth missions, tower defense, many rpg elements, zombie survival, arcade games, a plethora of cultural references, fast food, and nonlinear gameplay -- all skillfully integrated into the story. On top of that, the well done ship customization makes the game almost endlessly replayable. $10 for the best game ever.
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12 of 12 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
31.0 hrs on record
Posted: February 2
Just completed main story.
Ok, this game is a hidden gem. Just wow. Buy it.
Story really rich and interesting to read, you'll forget about skip button. Characters are acting like real, no stupid speech templates, also unexpectedly good humour (IMHO good humour - legendary tier of rarity in videogames).
And of course gameplay, it's simple, but so damn engrossing. Ship customization can confuse at first, but after you understand it RAINBOW BEGINS!
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
29.3 hrs on record
Posted: November 22, 2014
Great game, hilarious missions and dialogues. TONS of customization, weapons, loadouts, ships, abilities, *foaming mouth*. Just a dozen hours in and I can’t wait to get the bigger ships, the biggest guns, and go on a rampage. Learning curve is stable, with gradual introduction to more and more mechanics and ships as the story progresses, which is great because you don`t get everything dumped at you at once. It does feel constricting at time when they force a ship type on you once you get use to a certain genre, overall though, lots of fun
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
52.0 hrs on record
Posted: December 3, 2014
A fantastic story in the package with a fantastic game to match, if top-down 2d real-time space battles and very satisfying levels of customization are your thing then this is the game for you! Singleplayer campaign coop is samescreen local coop only. The multiplayer modes are where online coop comes from.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
83.6 hrs on record
Posted: December 22, 2014
This game has a ridiculously long introductory stage that doesn't serve very well as a hook. Stick with it, though; it gets good. The semi-serious sci-fi story is entertaining, and the twin-stick shooting gameplay is well done indeed. Customizing ships with a variety of weaponry and power-ups adds another layer to the game, and the vast collection of challenge achievements improves the replay value. Oh, and there's multiplayer (with AI for those who want to play alone).
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
24.4 hrs on record
Posted: January 4
Wow! This unassuming little gem is one of the best values out there. It's a total steal even at full price as it's packed with an enormous amount of content and ship customization.

Ring Runners is essentially an isometric space ship shooter, but boy is it brimming with goodies. The main campaign consists of over a thousand missions and each one is set up with 30 seconds of storytelling. The missions have quite a lot of variety to them and only last maybe 5 minutes so this game is great for short bursts.

The ship customization is incredibly deep, yet quite approachable. All other games should take notes from Ring Runners on how to build a great game with a very simple premise.

This game is quite linear and even when it "opens up" it's still extremely linear, so know that going in. That said, the ship customization, writing and combat are all top notch. If you're a fan of games like Escape Velocity or Space Pirates vs Zombies, you should buy this game right now.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
30.7 hrs on record
Posted: January 20
Amazing... Just amazing.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
28.6 hrs on record
Posted: February 9
This is one of the best games i've played in my life.
+Funny - There are lot of funny dialogues and interactions in the campaing
+++Gameplay - The mechanics are really great. I'm fairly new to space shooters, this one made me want to explore the genre a little more
++Diversity - The game counts with different ship classes you can choose, each one with strategic diferences from each other
+Multiplayer - From the little i've played, the multiplayer seemed balanced and a lot of fun
-Controls - Controls are hard to get and harder to master, it adds some difficulty to the game and people often count this as a pro, but in my opinion it dissuades a lot of people from playing this.
= Graphics - A game doesn't have to be a graphic masterpiece to be good, but it's worth mentioning that the graphics are really simple

Solid game with a good replayability and a good price, highly recommended.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
163.6 hrs on record
Posted: February 26
Really solid game with plenty of depth without being overly complicated.
Many differnt customization options to make your ship for just the right role, and easy to get all the parts you need because it is not grind heavy. All of the parts are usauble, and there isnt nessesary any bad ships or equipment.
Overall the game just feels right, with sounds and great physics.
Takes some times to get used to the flow, yet worth giving it a try.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
15.4 hrs on record
Posted: February 12
I didn't know if I would enjoy this game or not but it turned out to be spectacular.

Definitely worth the 10 bucks, heck, with this amount of content it could even be worth more. This games comes complete, no DLC ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥. Puts triple A companies to shame.

Full story with dialogue and characters you actually care about? Check (granted you actually read the stuff)
Fully customizable ships with hundreds of unlockable equips? Check
Multiple gamemodes in single and multiplayer? Check

I think the game is a port from Xbox Live Arcade? The controls take some time to get used to but afterwards it gets better especially after unlocking ships with easier maneuverability. The campaign starts off with a pretty long tutorial/introductory stages which introduces you to various ships, controls, and gameplay elements. But all this is part of the story and helps you get used to the controls.

The music is kinda funky in my opinion but it's nothing negative. The UI can definitely be improved some, especially the hanger interface which needs more information shown. Instead of popping open a new 'window' to view equipment descriptions, it could show when you move your mouse over or something. Something else I found kinda annoying, very minor still, is the dialogue boxes. It pops up frequently to tell the story which could be a little interruptive. It would be AWSOME if the campaign was fully voiced but that's just me asking for too much.

Definitely recommend.
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
34.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 18, 2014
This is a stupid game. It's mean. It does things, like make you cry, and care, and stuff. Wah.

Joking aside, honestly, this game is the most polished small-scale game I think I've ever seen. It's gorgeous. It's smooth, easy to play, easy to learn, and a riot of fun. Once you really begin to master it, and start playing against other people, or challenges, it reaches to another height of gameplay. From story, to mechanics, this game is honestly incredible. One of my top 10 games ever.
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
2.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 19, 2014
Surprisingly polished and deep, Ring Runner's gameplay draws inspiration from old school shmups like Asteroids, and Mechwarrior for ship customization, campaign and progression.

The campaign is linear but varied and very long to complete (don't rely on my Steam stats), and also challenging if you decide to play in Sage difficulty or higher. I recommend playing on Sage, the game is way too easy otherwise. Most missions can be replayed with a different, fully customized ship and that, in my opinion, is one of the greatest strengths of the game.

The story is engaging, has a nice touch of humor, and features many characters whose personality can be felt without ever seeing their faces. The game is backed by an original lore that justifies the way all technologies used in the game work, which adds a lot to immersion and will surely appeal to all Sci Fi fans like me.

Ship customization is incredibly deep for a game with such a classy shmup gameplay. Here are some ship kinds you can fly:
- A heavy gunship with thick shields that shoot rockets all over the place, or let its couple dozen turret pets do the shooting.
- An agile and accurate fighter that also relies on heat to cripple its foes. Yes, there is a heat stat just like in Mechwarrior.
- A "Caster" ship that creates gravity fields to snare its targets and wipe them out with damaging AOEs.
- A melee ship that can pull others toward them to drill them or smash them with a space flail (!)
- A cloaking rogue ship that creates holograms to confuse the crap out of the AI, then deal huge damage while they have their backs turned. Special attention has been given to stealth mechanics ; enemy ships will only spot you while you're cloaked if you get in front of them or fly into a radar ray.

You can also combine all of the above with hybrid ships. My favorite ship is a less stealthy rogue with the agility of a fighter.

Graphically and artistically, Ring Runner isn't particularly fancy, but it's polished and it will run smoothly on any PC.

Another point that really surprised me: the game's soundtrack is one of the best I've heard in a long time, it's really amazing and nicely fits its atmosphere (or its lack of atmosphere - it's space after all). You can easily find it on the internet.

TL;DR: If you like games with classic shmup mechanics, deep customization and an original Sci Fi story, this is the one.
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
8.4 hrs on record
Posted: February 15
The opposite to Titanfall in weapon and perk count.

What I liked:
  • RPG Space Shooter
  • So much variey in perks and weapons types
  • Great humor in the writing
What You Need to Know:
  • 30+ hour singleplayer campgain
  • So much options to upgrade, that you can get lost in what to do ( Has prebuilt ships if you don't want to get in that nerdy stuff)
  • You will read alot since there is no voice acting
  • Tried to get back into the game after taking a long break, so hard to do that
  • Only got 25% of the campgain done

My Score:

Paid $4 in a bundle
Have not completed game yet
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3 of 5 people (60%) found this review helpful
33.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 17, 2014
Game was a pleasant surprise. Good story and sense of humor. Hard to understand parts of ship management due to lack of information.
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7 of 13 people (54%) found this review helpful
72.7 hrs on record
Posted: January 11
I've played the full game and all scenarios to completion on the highest difficulty, and my main advice is to try the demo before you buy. I personally don't like the gameplay at all and stuck with it mostly for the good story and because I have completionist tendencies.

Movement is in most cases limited to forward, brake, and turn. Npc ships have too many momentum disrupting abilities for me to believe the people who say that you can become particularly great at maneuvering through the levels. Even a racing game would be dismal with such limited control, and in an action game it's like trying to draw squares by rolling a beach ball on a windy day. It's just plain graceless gameplay.

Yes, you can complete it easy enough on the lower difficulties, or learn to compensate for the terrible control, but the gameplay is just not fun enough for me to reccomend.
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1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
14.5 hrs on record
Posted: December 26, 2014
It's pretty good for the most part. Controls take some getting used to, and there's often so many abilities on your ship that it's hard to focus, but you can change that later. As another reviewer mentioned, the "intro" is ridiculously long.

One major irritation is that the game is very linear. You only get to make choices every now and then, and even when you DO, the game still forces you to play a different way. For example, there are a LOT of missions where you get to choose the ship you want to play and set up all of its options, which is really cool. But then, about halfway through the mission, through one dumb plot line or another, they make you play a different ship with a vastly different play style.

Another minor irritation, is that there are no "lives" so if you die, you have to start the mission all over again. That would be okay, IF you didn't have to play in a playstyle that you didn't want to play in.
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145 of 155 people (94%) found this review helpful
11.8 hrs on record
Posted: November 25, 2013
Ring Runner follows FTL into the illusive zone of flawless indie game glory. It is almost criminal that it took this game as long as it did to get on Steam. Addictive gameplay with an incredibly smooth UI, and a staggering amount of flexibility, with a depth and sophistication that will continue to surprise you. There are countless ships, with a fitting system of a quality you will be hard pressed to find outside of EVE Online. The story and dialogue is surprisingly good, at times goofy, often trippy and surreal and almost always hilarious. The graphics are absolutely beautiful, proof that it is not always necessary to melt your video card.

One comment which might be helpful, and which is only negative depending on your preferences, is in regard to how episodic the game is. I did not necessarily expect an "open world" but did expect some greater degree of openness to the campaign than I encountered. There really is none, the campaign is very episodic. Initially this may seem like a significant down side, but it gradually picks up and at least provides you with a little bit of choice.

A campaign and maps with significantly more "openness" I think would easily have pushed this onto a short list of some of the best games ever made, but as is Ring Runner is truly a jewel worth far more than the measily $10 they are asking for.

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92 of 95 people (97%) found this review helpful
32.3 hrs on record
Posted: November 29, 2013
A week ago I honestly hadn't heard of this game, I bought it on a whim, a longing for SPAZ2, and being a huge fan of RPG/Shooter type games, came together at a moment of weakness.

I was completely blown away, it was the most fun I've had in a game all year, and probably my favorite shooter of all time, a title previously held by Tyrian. I just can't praise you enough, it was fun the entire way. I just finished the campaign, and I really just loved it.

The ship control is a bit wonky at first, but after a few missions you should have it under control. And after a few hours you'll be amazed at some of the stuff you can pull off in speedy ships. The humor and writing style of the game might not be for everyone, but I really wouldn't let that stop you from buying the game. Remove all the words and the game is still an amazingly solid Shooter with a huge amount of customization, and balanced so that no ship type ever feels like the end all ship, I spent a solid 25 hours beating the game on Sage(normal) and will probalby put another 10-15 hours unlocking and customizing my ship.

Seiously, if you liked SPAZ, Tyrian, Raptor, or any shooter game in general buy this game. You won't regret it.
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60 of 69 people (87%) found this review helpful
24.8 hrs on record
Posted: April 20, 2014
I bought this game during a sale because it looked cool.

... I never knew I was buying one of the best games I've ever played.

Everything is top-notch... gameplay, graphics, storyline. I haven't played a game this immersive since the Escape Velocity series.

Stay the hell away if you want to have a life.
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42 of 45 people (93%) found this review helpful
1.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 26, 2013
A great space flight RPG with plenty of content. Ships have basic control similar to the old "Asteroids" PC game (you thrust to go forwards, and turning does not stop your momentum) and have plenty of hull types, weapons, and abilities to customise with. The game is story-driven with light humour, but has a rather slow-paced intro galaxy that may put people off (however, it can be skipped!)
Missions are basically set in closed arenas where you perform the task required, so this is not a fully open space sandbox (which wouldnt even make sense with a 2D game in space anyway).
The graphics are nice and tidy, and when the combat gets going you can end up with great little light shows.
All in all, RR:FotS has enough to get you addicted, and very few real drawbacks considering the price it can picked up for.
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