Zachtronics Industries is back with an ambitious new design-based puzzle game. Take on the role of a Reactor Engineer working for SpaceChem, the leading chemical synthesizer for frontier colonies. Construct elaborate factories to transform raw materials into valuable chemical products!
User reviews: Very Positive (2,577 reviews)
Release Date: Mar 2, 2011

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Recommended By Curators

"A puzzler that will both intrigue and infuriate. Combine and disassemble atoms into the right molecules to advance the plot, but beware of the bosses!"

About This Game

Zachtronics Industries is back with an ambitious new design-based puzzle game. Take on the role of a Reactor Engineer working for SpaceChem, the leading chemical synthesizer for frontier colonies. Construct elaborate factories to transform raw materials into valuable chemical products! Streamline your designs to meet production quotas and survive encounters with the sinister threats that plague SpaceChem.

Key features:


  • Over fifty mind-bending puzzles!
  • An original soundtrack by Evan Le Ny, whose music was featured in The Codex of Alchemical Engineering!
  • Twenty challenging achievements!

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    • OS: Windows XP SP3 / Vista / 7
    • Processor: 2.0 GHz Processor
    • Memory: 1GB RAM
    • Hard Disk Space: 300MB
    • Video Card: frame buffer support recommended
    • OS: OS X 10.7 or later
    • Processor: 2.0 GHz Processor
    • Memory: 1GB RAM
    • Graphics: frame buffer support recommended
    • Hard Drive: 300MB
    • Additional: Mono 2.6 or later
    • OS: Ubuntu 12.04 LTS, fully updated
    • Processor: 2.0 GHz Processor
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: frame buffer support recommended
    • Hard Drive: 300 MB
    • Other: Mono 2.6 or later
Helpful customer reviews
57 of 69 people (83%) found this review helpful
5 people found this review funny
62.4 hrs on record
Posted: January 20
Bought whiteboard just to beat it.
10/10
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30 of 33 people (91%) found this review helpful
8 people found this review funny
10.5 hrs on record
Posted: December 28, 2014
You know that feeling where you can spend hours meticulously working on a solution to a puzzle game only to find out at the very end that it won't work, and so you spend even more hours attempting to kludge it to work and then the entire thing becomes a mess but now you've invested all this time and you don't want to have to start from scratch? Well I have kidney stones
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35 of 51 people (69%) found this review helpful
8 people found this review funny
1.9 hrs on record
Posted: January 14
10/10

stopped my chronic masturbation.
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13 of 13 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
47.2 hrs on record
Posted: March 15
Sheesh, where do I begin? This game is a logician's wet dream.
Sure, it's an exercise in humility, but I feel I can safely say it's also the most compelling puzzle game I have played to date. There is no chaos whatsoever--only increasingly complex order and efficiency. If ever there were a game that captured the passion of engineering, this is it.

The music is deeply inspired and provides a suitable background to your work. The story has some enrapturing quality as well, a smidge of suspense and intrigue enough to give you that extra nudge forward. This may sound insane, but reading the story between puzzles feels physically relieving, as though the stress on your mind is shifted to different regions, much like those atoms are shuffled so smoothly around the reactors, so orderly, clean and calm.

Wait, did I say 'work'? I mean that in the kindest sense possible. You'll understand once you start to 'play'; these words will become interchangeable.

I could see this game used in schools to outstanding effect.
It's a masterpiece.
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26 of 39 people (67%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
0.9 hrs on record
Posted: February 3
I shall write a better review about this game when I figure out how to play it.
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11 of 13 people (85%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
1.5 hrs on record
Posted: February 19
This Game Makes My Brain Working.
And It Hurts
100/10 Would Think Again.
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6 of 6 people (100%) found this review helpful
30.8 hrs on record
Posted: February 17
Simple the best puzzle game ever and the only one that made me feel smart when completing a level!
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6 of 6 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
23.0 hrs on record
Posted: March 23
First 15 minutes: What the he!! is going on? So complicated! (and the graphic's not the best)

Next 45 minutes: Oh I'm so smart!

Onwards: NVM why am I so stupid?
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6 of 6 people (100%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
36.7 hrs on record
Posted: April 13
This gem of a game has quickly become one of my favorite puzzles of all time. Looks simple, yet it's incredibly hard and complex.

I am determined to finish this game without reading a single tutorial, forum post, or a youtube video (who cheats in a puzzle game anyway?) and hopefully I'll finally prove myself I'm not stupid, as my parents have been saying since forever.
Thank you parents for ruining my self esteem and my life.
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4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
36.0 hrs on record
Posted: January 11
This is an extremely difficult puzzler, designed for those who might enjoy circuitry puzzles or programming. Everyone else would be wise to stay far away.
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4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
3.1 hrs on record
Posted: May 23
I hated chemistry in school. You know that meme about math problems? The one about word math problems and the answer is "Purple because aliens don't wear hats". That one. That is how I felt and still feel about chemistry, engineering, and math. I have no idea where I even got SpaceChem, because I sure as hell wouldn't have bought it, unless I now have a sleep-buying condition I don't know about. At any rate, SpaceChem sat in my library for a very long time and it was only because I wanted the trading cards did I fire it up.

It sat playing in the background for a little bit, and then I noticed the soundtrack. Such an elaborate soundscape, I had to take a look at this game, even if it fried my brain.

The UI is stylish and minimalist, everything I would expect from a game with the words "Space" and "Chemistry" referenced in it. What I wasn't expecting was the rich story unfolding within the game. Like a science fiction unraveling through the planets explored with the completion of a set of puzzles found on each planet.

I won't lie, the puzzles involve chemistry and engineering (to a degree... hur hur) but don't let that put you off. Initially, I could feel my brain melt out of my ears as my senses felt overloaded with symbols, flashbacks to chemistry lab and purple because aliens don't wear hats.

But that soon subsided as I got stuck in with the tutorial and slowly tackled a couple of the earlier puzzles. There is a fluidity and beauty to this puzzle game that is perhaps what makes mathematicians, scientists and engineers smile when something goes right. I hate to admit it, but I felt it compelling at times to just watch a result replay. And there is a great sense of achievement when you solve a puzzle!

There is a lot at your fingertips within this game - there's even a periodic table that you can review - but don't let that put you off. I can only play the game in doses, but the music is perfect to thinking and solving a logical puzzle, and that is ultimately what this game comes down to: logic with chemistry elements. I imagine anyone studying engineering or chemistry may find great joy within this game - and it could even be a great learning tool to someone trying to master some of the key concepts of the subject.

If you can get pass some of symbols and terminology (and stop giggling at the term "waldo") then you will not be wasting your time exploring the puzzles and story within SpaceChem. The soundtrack alone is worth it.

I never thought I would say it, but SpaceChem is a little gem of a puzzle game. I recommend it.
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5 of 6 people (83%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
3.2 hrs on record
Posted: March 19
I played this game before I did on Steam.

You will be perpetually frustrated while playing this game. You will spend 40 minutes on a single piece of a larger puzzle, and find out that it's not even tangentially close to the solution. Yet, as you're deleting your solution, you'll have gained insight on both what to do and not next time. You will think about the level at night as you sleep or take a break, returning with a better idea of what you need to do.

There's no finishing the game in a single sitting.

Yet, whenever you finish a puzzle, you can't help but feel a rush of endorphins. After two hours of ♥♥♥♥ing around and being agitated at the lack of solution, when the victory music plays, it's almost ♥♥♥♥♥♥ic.

Also, each puzzle is amazingly open ended, which is aided by the fact that there's statistics comparing several variables (ticks, factory counts, symbol count, etc) to other players.

There's actually a pretty trippy story behind it, too. I was pretty demotivated by its complicatedness for a time, but the story had me hooked and pushing through.

8/10 would recommend.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
37.7 hrs on record
Posted: March 18
When I want some help for this game ,I click the big "H" in the game interface,and one big Periodic table of elements show there.

After settle several levels,I found this is really an interesting game.The process is not like Prelogate, it is more complicate,and also have a custom puzzle maker,though it do not support workshop in steam.

wow!There are 3 puzzles addition on the left-bottom screen in menu that shown as a map with a cheese on it.And It is really hard especially the third one!

The more you play,the harder you feel!

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I have played about 22 hours(I paid a bit time to read the novel) and only solved half of the story mode puzzles,and find there is some kind of hack system which included many many puzzles and I feel each of them seems very complicate,still it says that cause you have no access to see all of them!

wow!Someone who solved all of them must pay a lot of time on them.

04-18-2015

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5 planets finished,and 4 left.

04-27-2015

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Let's make a score for the puzzle game which depend on its complication,and the score is evaluated by the percentage of educated male who feel hard to solve its puzzle.For example,if all educated male can solve a puzzle game easily,then its score is 0,whereas,it is 100.

list:

portal2: 35
portal1: 30
The swapper: 25
Prelogate: 25
Trine1 & Trine2: 5

Spacechem:100

05-02-2015
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Try several times before,with total 4-5 hours,I get that 608 at last! I feel I can not do that so I dump it for a long time!

05-09-2015
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5 of 8 people (63%) found this review helpful
2.1 hrs on record
Posted: December 8, 2014
Well the game is fun, but the relationship b/w levels (D) & difficulty (L) is f(D)=L^2
In the last few levels I had to see walkthroughs to complete the game.

PS: You don't need to know any Chemistry to play this game.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
14.0 hrs on record
Posted: December 2, 2014
Easily one of the most time-consuming, mind-bending puzzle games I've ever tried. I feel like I was just starting and I'm surprised I've already spent 6 hours into it. Very rewarding for people who like to think and solve problems. Don't let the name fool you, however, this is more programming than chemistry, but I'm pretty sure chemistry geeks would really like it as well.

Also: You get to blow stuff up.

10/10 would blow agai---WAIT
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
1.5 hrs on record
Posted: December 2, 2014
This game is simply awesome. You get to learn a little bit of chemistry and the basics of programming, intuitively and while having a lot of fun! I'm still on the early problems, and the game does a great job of slowly easing you into new mechanics and situations (e.g. bonding molecules, ouputting two different molecules, etc). Great little game for the price, and an awesome way of learning!
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
0.9 hrs on record
Posted: December 18, 2014
Nice!
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
2.0 hrs on record
Posted: December 20, 2014
Give a try if you like puzzle game
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
50.1 hrs on record
Posted: December 1, 2014
Bought this game + DLC for under $3.00 back in 2012 during a sale.

This is a very unique puzzle game. Some puzzles can be tough and/or time consuming.

You build "systems" to construct molecules. You do not need a background in chemistry to understand this game. It has the atomic arrangements shown to you. These systems may or may not be automated by your design choice (later levels you can incorporate switchs in your system if you need to send certain molecules elsewhere i.e. Left thruster, or right thruster to move/dodge in a boss fight.. yes BOSS FIGHTS). Did I mention there are boss levels? No, they are not fast paced or epic, but is appropriate for this game IMO.

Some unique design capabilities include bonding, fusion, and teleporting.

MUST HAVE PATIENCE,
There is a leaderboard on efficiency of different categories such as least cycles (time unit), least symbols used, least reactors used and any I might have forgotten.

To obtain 100% of the achievements, I played this game on and off for TWO YEARS. Some steam achievements are pretty intimidating and may stress you out and make you feel hopeless and not know where to even begin :D

However, I enjoyed this game and even purchased a copy for a friend so I would recommend it to puzzle lovers.

My advice is to play this game in moderation unless you are a masochist lol.

tl;dl
Spent $3.00 for game + dlc (extra puzzles)
It is a systems design game where you construct things. Chemistry themed. No background needed.
There are BOSS FIGHTS >.>
Some puzzles are tough and some Steam achievements are very intimidating. MUST have patience for this game.
There is a leaderboard for each puzzle with different categories of efficiency (least cycles, least symbols used, etc).
I played on and off for TWO YEARS to obtain all the achivements.

Rating 8/10 (+2 Price, +2 Uniqueness, +2 Open Design Solutions, +1 One of the few games that forced me to take a break from occasionally, +1 A LOT of optional puzzles to keep you busy after you completed the main campaign)
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
34.8 hrs on record
Posted: December 14, 2014
Good for your brain!
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