Drox Operative is a starship action RPG with warring alien races, fierce space battles, a dynamic, evolving galaxy, and co-op multiplayer for Windows and Mac.Eons ago the Drox ruled the galaxy through their mighty Operatives. These elite starship captains were trained to accomplish the impossible at whatever cost necessary.
User reviews:
Very Positive (184 reviews) - 92% of the 184 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Nov 29, 2012

Sign in to add this item to your wishlist, follow it, or mark it as not interested

Buy Drox Operative

WEEK LONG DEAL! Offer ends in


Downloadable Content For This Game



“While it doesn’t have the flashy, immediate appeal of a conventional Pinata-popper like Diablo, Drox Operative provides the greater gift of a world in which the action part of ARPG has consequences, as does inaction. It’s the advancement of the genre that so many people have given up on searching for and Soldak have been providing it for years.”
Rock, Paper, Shotgun

About This Game

Drox Operative is a starship action RPG with warring alien races, fierce space battles, a dynamic, evolving galaxy, and co-op multiplayer for Windows and Mac.

Eons ago the Drox ruled the galaxy through their mighty Operatives. These elite starship captains were trained to accomplish the impossible at whatever cost necessary. Whether employing stealth or brute force, they were always deadly. Using these Operatives, the Drox built a starlane system for quick travel amongst the stars, colonized and conquered millions of planets, and ruled the galaxy with an iron grip for over 100,000 years. Eventually realizing their Operatives were a threat, they attempted to assassinate all of them. They failed. The following Galactic Civil War was devastating.

Thousands of years later, the Drox are extinct, but the secretive Drox Operative guild lives on. They have learned their lesson though: loyalty to any one race is foolish. They now work for whoever can pay. And pay they do! Empires might span hundreds of planets and thousands of ships, but when a critical task arises, they still turn to an Operative.

In the new space race, the major races are scouting, colonizing, and expanding, trying to take over the galaxy by diplomacy, technology, war, or any other means their scheming minds can contemplate.

As a Drox Operative it's NOT your job to manage all of those annoying people, build thousands of buildings, play nice with your enemies, or balance the budget. It IS your job to pick the winning side and maybe even help them conquer the galaxy if you're being nice, more importantly though is to rake in as many credits as possible, well that and build the coolest, deadliest ship in the known universe. Not many screw with an Operative captaining a Dreadnaught!

  • Explore a dynamic and evolving galaxy
  • Explore a unique sector of the galaxy in every game, with different "monsters", ship components, quests, and even races
  • Fight in the galactic war between the various alien races
  • Battle hundreds of different enemy starships
  • Build the coolest and deadliest starship in the galaxy
  • Outfit your ship with thousands of components and crew
  • Adventure with your friends with co-op multiplayer

System Requirements

Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    • OS: XP or newer
    • Processor: 1.5 GHz Pentium 4
    • Memory: 256 MB RAM
    • Graphics: GeForce 2 or better
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Storage: 200 MB available space
    • OS: OS X 10.4 or newer
    • Processor: 1.5 GHz processor
    • Memory: 256 MB RAM
    • Graphics: GeForce 2 or better
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Storage: 200 MB available space
    • Processor: 1.5 GHz processor
    • Memory: 256 MB RAM
    • Graphics: GeForce 2 or better
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Storage: 200 MB available space
Customer reviews
Customer Review system updated Sept. 2016! Learn more
Very Positive (184 reviews)
Review Type

Purchase Type


Display As:

(what is this?)
167 reviews match the filters above ( Very Positive)
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
145.3 hrs on record
Posted: October 5
Think of it like a space-based hack-and-slash with political intrigue, questing, exploration, and ultra-deep ship customization. There are multiple ways to win each sector, so you can play like Magellen one round and Blackbeard the next, and there's a shared stash so you can twink new ships. Super fun way to kill an afternoon.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
178 of 189 people (94%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
63.8 hrs on record
Posted: February 18, 2014
I've been playing this game for a few years now, but it has only just become available on Steam.

Don't let the rather unattractive visuals fool you (admittedly the screenshots look just terrible): this is the best action RPG out there. Period.

Drox Operative is actually and ARPG set inside a 4X game being played out by AI's. You can influence events in a myriad of ways. You create a ship, generate a galaxy which will have some number of races playing in it, and you can win by allying yourself with the victors, or if you are particularly bloodthirsty you can just ♥♥♥♥ everything in sight until you accumulate the points for a "Fear" victory. Afterwards you can retain your ship in a newly generated galaxy. It is so satisfying to play an RPG in a "living" universe rather than mindlessly grinding through the same old dungeon with randomly spawning enemies until you reach some boss.

One of the great innovations is that the modules with which you fit your ship do not go into specific slots, but instead there are "hi, mid, low" slots (much like in EVE). So, if you want 4 lasers, you can do it. If you want 5 reactors to give you very rapid cap recharge, you can do it. You want 5 engines so your ship zips around the map? You can do it. Are you a Romulan who fantasizes about redundant cloaking devices? Well, you get the idea.

There certainly seem to be no other RPG's out there like Drox, so if you like space and you like RPG's it's a must-buy, but there is some room for improvement: In my opinion the visual appeal of the game is non-existant, and staring at it for hours gets rather drab, but rest assured the great gameplay will keep you doing just that. Though there is large array of loot you will find, I certainly feel that they could add many more modules which do a much wider variety of different things.

Anyway, for $10 or $20, you certainly shouldn't regret this buy.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
119 of 120 people (99%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
164.2 hrs on record
Posted: March 17, 2014
Ever wondered what would it be like to play a typical 4X Space Strategy, but not as one of racial leaders, but as an independent mercenary? Drox Operative lets you do just that!

Drox Operative is an action RPG with a good dose of space exploration. But where other space exploration games take place in static or semi-static universe, a notable feature of Drox Operative is that NPC factions expand and develop like races in 4X Space Strategy would: they establish new colonies, build ships and space stations, research new technologies and of course fight both neutral enemies and each other. This creates unparalleled feeling that you are adventuring in a living world, which constantly moves on regardless of your actions!

In regard of RPG stats, Drox Operative does a good job of simulating that your “character” is a spaceship: character’s attributes are replaced by your crew’s expertise in various fields. Though the result is fairly similar in regard of distributing “crew points”, immersion-wise the system accomplishes its job.

The equipment system differs from that of most RPG in that most of equipment slots (all except for 3 specialized slots based on your ship’s design, that is) freely allow to install any equipment of appropriate tonnage. Want to add an extra engine instead of your heavy laser turret? No problem! Have a medium ballistic weapon instead of aforementioned laser turret, which unlike the later you can install in place of your radar? Ditto! This makes your ship very customizable and allows you to adjust it according to your playing style (and re-outfit it whenever you feel like it).

And the final unique feature of Drox Operative is crewmates. They technically function as equipment (occupying either the special crew slot, or the light slots), but unique in that they level up as well, improving the bonuses they provide over time.

To sum it up, Drox Operative is a great game, and I fully recommend it to anyone who likes action RPGs, space exploration, or both!
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
49 of 55 people (89%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
63.1 hrs on record
Posted: February 19, 2014
If Star Control, Civilization, and Diablo had a baby, it would be named Drox Operative. It's a surprisingly fun yet incredibly deep game. You can lose and win the game a number of different ways and play it accordingly. Want to play by making everyone fear you? You can do that. Want to win the hearts and minds of the alien species? You can do that. Want to explore and blast bad guys? You can do that. There's a ton of gameply customizability options to make the game easier or harder or slower or faster. The graphics are a bit dated, but there's nothing that pulls me out of being immersed in the soap opera like politics that I was neck deep in. Tons of races and ships to get started and star systems to explore with random encounters and loot all over the place. While I was waiting for a Skyrim mod to download, I saw this on sale and I'm glad I picked it up because I had forgotten about my mod about 7 hours later when it was time to go to bed.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
50 of 60 people (83%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
11.7 hrs on record
Posted: February 18, 2014
This game is the perfect example of the fact that you don't need over-the-top graphics and flashy swords to make a good action rpg. Easy to pick up, loads of fun, and quite the steal.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
39 of 44 people (89%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
30.6 hrs on record
Posted: February 20, 2014
Basically, the game is Din's Curse..IN SPACE! with some heavy focus on diplomacy and politics. The idea is that you are part of a group called the Drox Guild, with the goal of maintaining the presence of the Guild in the sector (the game world). There are several ways one can win or lose, giving YOU the player the ability to choose how to win/fail. Like the other Soldak games, this features the living world around you aproach to the hack and slash. Quests have time limits. Success or failure will cause changes to the game world. That radiation leak on the planet won't fix itself, and if you leave it for long enough the planet can suffer more woes that you can solve. But should you buy this game?

Yes. Yes you should. Here is why:

+You are a space mobster. Really the game should be called Drox Moberative.
+Technically infinite gameplay, just because you beat the sector doesn't mean you can't keep playing in particular in HOW you won the sector. I got a "fear" victory while at war with two races and battled them for a good two hours to make little head way.
+Decent gameplay. Its a hack and slash, but it is tuned to make sense and it plays pretty well. The battles are engaging and enjoyable, if not overwhelming at points.
+VERY diverse worlds. It is improbable that you will get the same sector twice. In addition to simply having a random lay out, each system and sector have different moddifiers (more enemies, more agressive behavior, more traps) so you never know what you are going to get with your new sector. On top of that, Mods Mods Mods. Add more mayhame with mods
+Easy to lose track of time with. Not sure why that is a plus but what ever.

That said there are some things to be desired such as stat point distribution, but most if not all can be fixed with mods. Give the demo a try if you are still not sure. It is much more engaging than one would think.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
38 of 43 people (88%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
10.0 hrs on record
Posted: February 19, 2014
Ok, Soldak we get it, you've got my attention. You've shown me how unique an ASRPG can be. And it's better with friends I might add!

Being apart of a space illuminati wasn't in my expectations of exploring space, but man, this -- this is better. Control the fate and destiny of entire races? Or destroy them even?

Choices. That's the keyword for Drox Operative. And damn guys.. Soldak executes this really well.

Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
32 of 35 people (91%) found this review helpful
195.0 hrs on record
Posted: June 21, 2015
Ever played a space strategy game where you have to colonize planets, trade and maintain a diplomatic relationship with other races and take care of your own people while doing so? Ever wondered what it would be like to be that random event that caused citizens to rebel, technology to be sold to your enemy, a race that you would like to be a friend but just won't listen because some element in the game says 'Hell no!'?

Well in this game you can; This is a top-down space shooter, but around the player several computer players are playing out a space strategy game. You can befriend them, you can fight them, you can trade with them, you can support them in their war or colonization efforts, you are a Drox Operative. And the other races know that to have a Drox Operative on your side is the path to victory.

The graphics are great and the player is allowed a reasonable range of customization to make it his/her own. Musical score and sounds a pretty good, as is the general feel of the game. I did have some problems with the keys though, and understanding what the game was about in the first place, but after 15 mins of just diving in head first I found it surprisingly easy to understand. As for the keys, would like a weapon group to be used for weapons; The only weapon that fires when pressing the mouse is weapon no. 1, although in all fairness I haven't been looking for it very hard, its probably in there somewhere.

You can only have 1 ship (per Operative / Save slot ) and it is a persistant ship (and crew), meaning it carries over from one game into the other. A bit confusing is a game being called a 'Sector', which from what I understand is a galaxy, which happens to consist of...sectors...ya... Anywho, you can fully customize your ship to be a fighter, bomber, trader, colony vessel, or any combination you may think of. It grows in class as you grow in experience (and award points to a particular skill) opening more slots in your ship to install equipment in.

All in all an original idea realised; A gem in any original gamers collection.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
27 of 28 people (96%) found this review helpful
11.2 hrs on record
Posted: August 2
Drox Operative is an action/ Shoot 'Em Up RPG that has a great deal of features that make it a very interesting game. Although these same features end up making it lose some of its replayability (a single game can take many hours).
The gameplay makes up for the game's poor graphics.

The objective of this game is to pick a side and help them win. There are 5 ways to win and 4 to lose:
- Military win or loss
- Diplomatic win or loss
- Economic win or loss
- Fear win
- Legend win
- Bounty Hunters (loss)

By exploring sectors of the universe you will find several new races, enemy ships, space wrecks, meteors, anomalies and planets. A fascinating aspect of this game is the fact that all planets have a gravitational pull: if you are close to them your ship will slow down.
There are also wormholes that transport you to a random destination.

You can help races by doing quests and help them destroy enemy ships. This does not make them automatically your ally. You can also do the exact opposite: manipulate, spread rumors, attack them to further your own agenda or by request of another race.
Even if a race is your ally it does not mean they won't betray you down the road (although that also depends of the race's nature).

You start the game by choosing a spaceship from any race: your choice does not make you an ally of that race, you're only choosing the ship you like the most (or the one with better stats).
There are 6 stats to spend your points on.

Each ship has 5 components: heavy, medium, light, race specific and cargo bays. All components have slots where the "items" such as batteries, pods, weapons, deflectors, crew, plating and fighters are placed.
You can pay the crew to keep them happy.
All ships have a specific power load (that can be increased). If there is any available power load it will increase the ship's regeneration rate. On the other hand if overloaded it will decrease the ship's speed, regen rate and repair rate.

The ship is protected (depending on the items) with shields, armor plating and lastly structure. If the structure is depleted the ship is destroyed. Energy is used whenever a weapon is fired.
There are also consumables to help you during the battles.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
21 of 23 people (91%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
55.0 hrs on record
Posted: July 3, 2014
I highly recommend this game. It may not be much to look at but it's one of those games where every galaxy you play has a different little story to go along with it. I love being able to observe (and meddle in) the wider politics of the game world while slaughtering bad guys ARPG style. It makes the game into more than just an excercise in loot gathering.The other thing I find important that this game has is an insane amount of character customization and different ship parts which unlock all kinds of cool abilities. There arwe an almost infinite amount of possibilities for different builds you could do.

One thing that's either a strength or a weakness of the game depending on how you look at it is the game is pretty unforgiving especially when you haven't designed your character and ship very well. It is the sort of game where everything can be going along fine and then suddenly you are swarmed by more than you can handle. Since this game saves pretty much everything and never lets you go back and reload a save older than the last thing you did death has some nasty consequences even on softcore difficulty, it makes it very satisfying when you find a build that finally is able to survive most encounters but it get get frustrating as well.

Bottom line: If the concept of this game looks appealing to you at all - get it. It's the best ARPG I've ever played.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
Recently Posted
23.2 hrs
Posted: October 18
This is a fun, simple, yet challenging game.
This is kind of Diablo in space, with diplomacy, with a lot of dying.
Instead of hacking and slashing you lock on and fire lasers.
Instead of axes and bows you have missiles, lasers, mines, shields, power generators, hull armour, etc.

Gameplay is great and offers a lot of replayability at various difficoulty settings.
Controls are bit difficoult to learn at start but there are guides on the net that can help a newbie out.
Game is very unforgiving. You make a bad decision - you deal with consequences. There is no save option. You can just create a new universe at start there.
Your experience does carry over from one universe to another allowing for constant progress.

Great replayability
Not bad AI

Inventory system (starting cargo bay is very small)
Graphics (not really a con as it means that game works fast at low cost setups)
Quests will get a bit repetitive over time
Helpful? Yes No Funny
246.3 hrs
Posted: September 21
This game is simply incredible.

To start with the game is most generally an overhead realtime 2d space shooter. Think of games like Space Rangers or SPAZ. You can visit planets, there are hostiles and friendlies all over the map, and so on. Where the game radically diverges from anything else out there (to my knowledge) is in gameplay concept.

Imagine a game like Civilization. But instead of playing as a civilization you play as a freelancer manipulating events from the outside. There are lots of ways to win. Ally with the strongest side and destroy everybody else? That works. Have all remaining races allied with each other (and you?) - that works. There are also some side ways to win like being enough of a bad ♥♥♥ that everybody becomes sufficiently terrofied of you, or enough of a hero that everybody becomes sufficiently respectful and inspired by you, and so on.

This would already be a really fun concept but what takes it over the top is an awesome Diablo style loot system that somehow manages to constantly surprise you with interesting and unexpected items - so more Diablo 2 than Diablo 3 there. I've played about 20 hours and feel like I haven't even scratched the surface of the game. Very highly recommended along with the DLC which substantially extends and enhances the base game.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
33.4 hrs
Posted: September 12
Do not be put off by the simple graphics and retro music. This game has depth, action and shear fun.

Your persistent ship keeps being challenged by random sectors, for which the difficulty is all up to you. Slow, casual grind or fast, tough games. The choice is yours.

Plenty of classes, plenty of items, plenty of skill point decisions. This game is fantastic for any ARPG or space fan. If it had better graphics, it would be famous!

Nice job devs!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
18.6 hrs
Posted: August 27
The game it's fun enough but there is a looooooonnnnnnnggggggg grind ahead of you if you start. The game is a well designed with clear goals and the concepts are easy to pick up with a bit of practice. The control over the level and rules of each sector makes it easy to fit your style.

This is recommended only to those who have the time to put into it. You'll be repeating the same thing over and over and over and over.

Update: mods help reduce the pain.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
1.7 hrs
Posted: August 12
Helpful? Yes No Funny
18.6 hrs
Posted: July 23
Product received for free
Before requesting this title for review, I checked first the store page, and from the video and the screenshots available there, I thought it would be some easygoing 'diablo in space' with some diplomacy. Oh boy, I could not have been more wrong!!!

Drox Operative is indeed, at first glance, a top down space RPG shoot em up with some equipable items of variably quality (common-rare-elite-etc). But there is more than meets the eye in this title. Essentially you are a freelancer superspy and you can affect how each sector can and will evolve with your actions and choices!

For a game that is quite old, I was pleasantly surprised by the amount of courses of actions you have available in order to achieve your goals. First thing first, you are a Drox operative (duuuuh) that just finished the training and you enter your first sector to conquer! You choose your ship from a selection of 10 ships, each one unique as it represents each race that you can encounter in your playthrough. How you'll do that is up to you as there are 5 ways to achieve victory. Military, alliance with the highest power race, diplomatic, alliance with everyone, economic, make profit for the Drox guild in this sector, fear, to be dreaded by the factions, and finally legend, that is to do some heroic feats toward every faction like killing space monsters! Each victory has its own rewards and can be equally challenging to the other if you set it as a personal goal. The difficulty level can be customized in quite extremes, as before you start each sector you set your preferences in order to be generated! You'll be able to select from enemy starting level to sector size, speed of expansion for the various races, the number of the races, as well as additional difficulty setting, that becomes available once you achieve certain levels with your ship! When you conquer a sector you retain your ship and items and move to the next sector. Generally speaking, each type of victory requires different approach. Diplomatic victory means that you need to get along even with the most easy to provoke races (or destroy them) and cultivate your relations with each race to the point of them accepting you as an ally. However at the same time you must deal with any conflicts the various races have between them, this is usually achieved via options such as rumors or diplomacy, and you need to interact with each race for this to be effective! In addition you'll need to look for problems that require your attention for each planet, e.g.: X planet needs Y item in order to clear radiation, the cool part in this is that as long as the planet is radiated, certain effects apply, like reduced population growth, which in turn can result in an easy to destroy planet! Fear victory, perhaps the most rewarding and my personal favorite, requires you to do dreadful acts (such as sabotages or delivering nuclear weaponry) as well as daredevil hunting of named elite ships. When feared you will be able to make successful demands from the diplomacy screen and, if you achieve victory, you are give an extra item for each race kept alive at the moment of sector completion! Legend, on the other hand requires you to generally avoid taking parts in conflict and go for various objectives set by many races, usually destroying weapon devices or bounty hunting. Also there will be some random events, like ambushes or wormholes, to put you out of your way for a bit. As a final note in the gameplay section of the review, when you try some indirect action towards a race/planet (rumor/spying/propaganda) you are given 3 choices, depending on the funds you want to spend and success you want to have. However these two values are highly affected by your relationship with said race, so spying on a neutral race will have 75% success rate at max while on a friendly race it can go over 90%. Similarly there are penalties for hostile races!

The game, while visually is outdated, still succeeds with its graphics as you'll be drawn to the enormous amount of choices a lot more than to the graphics! The music is nothing special but the sound effects are good and sometimes funny to listen to! (try espionage on a planet). The game is easy to learn, because it employs in game help texts instead of a pure tutorial level that pop at the appropriate time instead of flooding your screen all at once. Additionally there is a help screen with all the topics combined should you want to review anything. The controls are easy to understand and you can customize them as you wish. However the lack of an actual tutorial can lead new players into defeat as you need to be aware of what is happening between the various races at all times. Additionally the AI can be a bit meh, or make you wonder about the 'I' part, as it sometimes does unintelligent actions, like requesting a treaty while bribing you with 300 credits, and after you reject it can request the same treaty again bribing 100 credits. However this was not the norm. Also there are a few bugs or glitches, e.g.: X race requests me to steam Y tech for them, I ignore this and later in the game I steal from X the Y the requested tech (that they either got from spying or developed), and I complete the quest! Finally my biggest complain, I could not find any use for the various techs I came across the game other than use them as diplomacy trading chips. I hope that given this game is gigantic, to find in a future playthrough some use for them.

Overall Drox Operative is a great game and definitely worth its price, as it can keep you entertained for extended periods of time! Also it is quite unique to what is has to offer, game features which I can't find a title that combines most of them and to such degree!


I recieved this game by the steamified group.
For similar reviews and great giveaways feel free to visit http://www.steamified.com
Helpful? Yes No Funny
37.8 hrs
Posted: July 21
There's some fun to be had with this game, the design is interesting. However, the gameplay becomes really, really repetative. So you're going to hit a point where the game just ceases to be interesting. Also, bounty hunters are way OP.

Overall: 2/5
Helpful? Yes No Funny
32.1 hrs
Posted: July 10
Great Game
Helpful? Yes No Funny