Weave through missiles to generated music, and let the world flow around you.
User reviews:
Mixed (423 reviews) - 62% of the 423 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Sep 2, 2014

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

Buy Borealis


About This Game

Borealis is a Zen game focused on measured motion and planning, rather than swift action.

The goal is simple: don't get hit. You have no weapons to fight back though. That would be too easy. In fact, you can't even move very fast. Your only way through is to guide the incoming waves into each-other through subtle and careful shifts. Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent, after all. Better to guide your opponent into destroying itself.

The game is composed of many environments, each of which has a unique style and set of missiles, as well as its own sound profile. Each will require a different strategy, and produces more interesting types of missiles as you advance. All of this is done to a procedurally-generated soundtrack that is completely driven by what happens in the game.


  • Three gameplay modes: Survival, Score run, and Endless
  • Many different moods, which each represent a massive change in gameplay
  • Completely procedurally generated, with incredible replay value
  • Known to induce meditation-like trances in monkeys*
  • *Not actually tested, results may vary.

System Requirements

    • OS: Windows 7, Windows 8.1
    • Processor: 1.5ghz i3 or equivilant
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: GeForce 6800 or equivilant
    • DirectX: Version 10
    • Storage: 1 GB available space
    • Sound Card: Audio output recommended
Customer reviews
Customer Review system updated Sept. 2016! Learn more
Mixed (423 reviews)
Review Type

Purchase Type


Display As:

(what is this?)
142 reviews match the filters above ( Mixed)
Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
31 of 32 people (97%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
5.7 hrs on record
Posted: March 10
Certainly not a bad game as such, but the original idea has not been executed as it could have been. As a "dot in space" (or elsewhere), you have to dodge incoming lines. Seems familiar enough, but it comes with a twist: you can only move fairly slow, and when moving in a fluid motion, you can "direct" the incoming lines (I can't help of thinking about them as missiles) to a certain degree so that they slap into each other. The slow pace and the rather peculiar, somehow relaxing music, contribute to the overall feeling of ease the game offers.
But that's also, to a certain degree, its downfall: in order to progress through the levels, one has to stay sharp and move accurately. Somehow, I didn't manage to achieve that and the game became rather boring after a while. It felt more and more pointless to progress through levels offering basically the same mechanics over and over again.

There are several game modes, including an "endless" and a "score endless" mode, so there are some possibilities for variation, but ultimately these modes only change the "rewards" you get, not the playstyle. Borealis surely has an art-style all of its own, and can be visually quite pleasing. The game comes with trading cards, at least on paper since even after more than four hours of in-game time, none has dropped yet. The achievements, although not original in any way, are mostly not too difficult and with some dedication Borealis could be a nice 100% game for achievement collectors.

Not really recommended, although it is worth trying out if you can get it on sale.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
57 of 76 people (75%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
0.7 hrs on record
Posted: October 12, 2014
To play, you must un-learn everything you once knew about arcade shooters. Use cautious and purposeful movements to redirect your enemies into each-other and make a safe path forward. All of this exists in an infinite universe, which constantly adapts to keep you at the edge of your skill, and generates soothing procedural music from your actions. It's fun!
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
51 of 74 people (69%) found this review helpful
1.7 hrs on record
Posted: September 3, 2014
Every element of this game is nothing short of awesome, the soundtrack suits the game very well and the game players very well. The game offers a few modes to choose from which can offer some variety for the player!

-Score Run

All of these modes are really fun, and add extra value and playtime to the game! - Borealis is a great Zen styled game with procedurally generated levels, so each play is unique and different.

I would recommend this game to anyone that is on the fence about buying this game, I would say pick the game up it’s a great game on Steam with a chilling soundtrack!
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
28 of 38 people (74%) found this review helpful
3.6 hrs on record
Posted: September 3, 2014
A very relaxing affair with serene visuals and pleasant, ambient sound design. Gameplay couldn't be simpler, avoid everything with only the mouse for input. Difficulty builds slowly, but don't be lulled into complacency or it's game over before you know it!

A great little game, one I'll likely come back to for quite some time. Well worth the trivial price.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
21 of 26 people (81%) found this review helpful
4 people found this review funny
1.1 hrs on record
Posted: July 16, 2015
This game isn't related with Half-Life.

It's just a simple and relaxing game in that you play as your mouse pointer dodging colorful lines listening relaxing music, with an amazing background stage.

The game consists of 3 Modes, Survival, Score and Endless.

This game deserves a place in your library.

7 / 10
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
25 of 38 people (66%) found this review helpful
0.6 hrs on record
Posted: November 10, 2014
Simple game, you play as your mouse pointer.
The rule is to survive the missiles strike.

Most people find out this game is boring.
But mehh, It's a casual game.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
21 of 31 people (68%) found this review helpful
1.5 hrs on record
Posted: October 3, 2014
Pass the time by dodging a bombardment of lines while listening to various musical chords. Borealis can almost be classified as meditative...almost. The game purposely tries to slow you down by preventing knee-jerk mouse reactions. Simple concept, simple gameplay, simple review.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
14 of 19 people (74%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
11.0 hrs on record
Posted: July 7, 2015
TL;DR 4/10...This is a simple elegant game which should get a thumbs UP even though most people will get a quick zen moment for 10 or 20 minutes, then abandon. In theory, most any gamer could be happy to drop their 0.50-$1 for this on sale.

However, they took a simple one dimensional mechanic--and blew it.

There are only 13 modes. Meteors zip through the screen with various unique movements, but most of them are heat-seeking (to you), though with very wide turning radii. When encountering each other (or you), they explode. The 1st core rule is that you are not allowed to move your cursor (death-target) very fast. If you attempt to move fast, the game penalizes you by forcing you to move even slower than before. This is a fine rule in that it encourages deliberate, controlled movement, rather than quick, zippy motions.

In particular, 1 of the 13 modes is broken--Rave (conveniently missing in marketing screenshots and video.) The mode has tiny, thin, multicolored meteors on a black background. It causes immense eye-strain and nausea. To abuse the human player, not the skills of the human, the red meteors are virtually invisible in both RL day and night lighting. Furthermore, the background gives blue flashlight streaks across the screen which are completely harmless. So, this creates confusion as to what should be dodged. It creates the feeling of dodging a flashlight (you cannot).

This could be written off as simply 1 poorly designed mode--grind it or skip it, right? No. The achievement mechanism is broken. I completed the Symmetry and Summoning modes ten times before it gave me the achievement (1 completion required). I will be very ♥♥♥♥♥♥ when I finally grind out the Rave mode and it does not give me the achievement. EDIT: yep, the mode achievements fail. Another achievement is for getting level 1000 on Survival--I never got much past 100, yet I received the achievement after awhile at 89, perhaps it accumulates all scores ever? Achievement of level 10000 on ScoreRun is broken too.

5 of the Achievements are misnamed--do not match the name of the mode. Come on DEVs you have 13 modes--that is IT. How hard is it to copy/paste the name? Dev phail.

Such a simple, elegant game that deserved kudos for very little programming--they blew it.
Beauty/Zen: 8/10
Game Mechanics: 6/10
Quick Fun: 6/10
Overall Broken system: 4/10
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
22 of 34 people (65%) found this review helpful
0.1 hrs on record
Posted: September 3, 2014
I read the description of the game before I bought it, and it gave me exactly what it said. A game where you move a small object around slowly dodging lines. I can't really complain, even if it really isn't that fun.

I am however, very saddened that you cannot select a graphics mode to play in, turn off the music, or anything else. I was looking forward to playing the stage with the retro green lines and turning off the music for a semi enjoyable nostalgic experience, but alas, you need to go through the entire game every time.

In short, read the description before you buy a game, and don't complain like a jerk if you got exactly what was advertised.

Price could be a bit lower though, there's really not much to offer. Then again, the developer has mentioned adding more options to allow a bit of customization to your game experience, and has shown that he cares about what others think, so you know, at least you're sending your money to a nice enough person, which is always nice.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
8 of 9 people (89%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Not Recommended
3.0 hrs on record
Posted: December 22, 2015
A great idea but simply lacks polish and depth. The framework is there for a truly brilliant game. Instead, Borealis is just.. meh. I hope the developer isn't discouraged by the mixed reception though. Borealis is by no means a bad game, it's just rough around the edges and doesn't do enough to keep your attention. As it stands, I can't recommend this game. At $1 maybe. Anything more than that, not so much.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
Recently Posted
2.7 hrs
Posted: October 2
Cannot recommend this game. Nothing fun here for me.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Oscarjames | PRIVATE BUYER
0.8 hrs
Posted: September 20
Highly recommended! :)
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Mongoloid Mike
2.2 hrs
Posted: September 3
Helpful? Yes No Funny
0.4 hrs
Posted: September 2
Helpful? Yes No Funny
0.9 hrs
Posted: August 26
It's neat. Thumbs up for simple gameplay and ambient music.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
0.2 hrs
Posted: August 21
What can I say, It's kinda relaxing...
Helpful? Yes No Funny
3.6 hrs
Posted: July 24
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Crispy Tacos
0.1 hrs
Posted: July 4
It's a bit of a mashup of Asteroid and the inverse of Missile Command, in that your objective is to avoid the missile objects launched at you, rather than intercept objects using your missiles. Unfortunately, there's nothing really here to engage you and bring you back to playing the game after you die - you die, the game resets, and you feel like you've gotten your fill.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
1.4 hrs
Posted: June 29
Product received for free
Weird, but entertaining for a while :)
Helpful? Yes No Funny
3.6 hrs
Posted: June 16
why is this on my pc I'll never know
Helpful? Yes No Funny