Brings the simultaneous turn-based strategy genre up-to-date and lets you give detailed, accurate orders to your squad.
User reviews: Very Positive (1,805 reviews)
Release Date: May 26, 2011

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Buy Frozen Synapse: Soundtrack Edition

Includes one copy of the Soundtrack and two copies of Frozen Synapse - Send the extra copy of the game to a friend.

Buy Frozen Synapse: Complete Pack

Includes two copies of Frozen Synapse - Send the extra copy of the game to a friend.

Buy Frozen Synapse: Soundtrack

Includes the Frozen Synapse Soundtrack

Buy Frozen Cortex Mega Tier

Includes everything in the Soundtrack Edition (apart from a different unique trophy) PLUS Frozen Synapse Complete Pack! Additional EP and soundtrack by nervous_testpilot, in-game helmet, celebration animation, behind-the-scenes videos.

Downloadable Content For This Game

 

Recommended By Curators

"A multiplayer tactics game in which you plan your actions and they're all then executed simultaneously against the enemy. Killer soundtrack."
Read the full review here.

Reviews

“Ceaselessly thrilling.”
9/10 – EDGE
“Excellent and inventive...it's such an achievement.”
9/10 – Eurogamer
“The most moreish and brilliant game I've played in years.”
95% – bit-gamer

About This Game

Frozen Synapse is the ultimate tactical game on PC and Mac.
It brings the simultaneous turn-based strategy genre bang up-to-date and lets you give detailed, accurate orders to your squad: classic gameplay with a modern interface.
Plan your moves, test them out, then hit the "Prime" button: both you and your enemy's turns are executed simultaneously.
Competitive-but-intuitive multiplayer and a huge single player campaign mean that Frozen Synapse will give you hours and hours of tactical delight.

Key features:

  • Get a FREE full copy of the game for a friend with every purchase
  • 5 challenging multiplayer modes, including the innovative bidding-based “Secure” and “Hostage Rescue”
  • 55-mission single player campaign with dynamic dialogue and thrilling near-future narrative
  • Powerful Skirmish Generator
  • Facebook, Twitter and YouTube integration
  • 15 Steam Achievements
  • Integrated IRC chat as well as various community features
  • Random generation combined with hand-crafted content means that levels and maps are different every time
  • Critically-acclaimed electronica soundtrack by musician nervous_testpilot

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
    • OS: Windows XP, Vista, 7
    • Processor: 1.6 GHz
    • Memory: 512 MB
    • Graphics: Netbook integrated graphics
    • DirectX®:
    • Hard Drive: 220 MB
    • Sound:
    • OS: OS X version Leopard 10.5.8, Snow Leopard 10.6.3, or later.
    • Processor: 1GHZ PowerPC (or Intel)
    • Memory: 512 MB
    • Graphics:
    • Hard Drive: 220 MB
    • Sound:
Helpful customer reviews
17 of 18 people (94%) found this review helpful
12.1 hrs on record
Posted: October 3
It's a shame when people have only AAA games in their mind and ignore hidden gems such as Frozen Synapse. The game is not for anyone - that can be said about any game out there. But in this case what I mean is that unlike other games where you just rush and kill everything in sight, in Frozen Synapse you must take a slower and more tactical approach. You are in command of a squad of soldiers, each equipped with different weapons, from shotguns through sniper rifles all the way to rocket launchers. The game has a good tutorial which can make a person understand the basic and more advanced tactics - from the standard take cover tactics to the more advanced search and destroy where each member of the squad covers the blind spot of the other and thus advance in their search for the enemies. Afterwards people can chose whether they want to advance to the campaign, practice against the computer in skirmish matches or go online against other people around the world. This is a game which would be more suited to the gamers which favor brains and strategy over the standard gamers which know only how to react and rely on reflexes while gaming ... If you are of the first type - I recommend buying this, if you are from the latter one - prove us wrong, joins us and show us ! :)
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14 of 16 people (88%) found this review helpful
5.3 hrs on record
Posted: October 28
Frozen Synapse is a great turn-based game with stirring tactical multiplayer battles that reward clever thinking. This game perfectly demonstrates the fact that looks aren't everything.
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17 of 22 people (77%) found this review helpful
50.7 hrs on record
Posted: June 29
A very engaging turn based tactical game that offers an enjoyable single player and a fun and competitive multiplayer both of which are deeply satisfying.
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7 of 7 people (100%) found this review helpful
12.3 hrs on record
Posted: October 26
Frozen Synapse is a turn based game where the turns are simultaneous. You plan what you want your units to do in the next 5 seconds, and you and your enemy enact their plans at the same time. The graphics are simple, yet interesting, and the singleplayer campaign is quite detailed.

Pros:

- Turn based
- Can run the plan of the current turn, and re-watch previous turns
- Many modes
- 25 dollars for a 2 pack
- Simple, easy to use UI


Cons:

- Hard to master
- High skill cap
- Quite a few advanced techniques that are not mentioned
- Simple graphics
- Forced to buy 2 copies
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8 of 9 people (89%) found this review helpful
4.7 hrs on record
Posted: June 21
Frozen Synapse is a tactical combat simulation game, with turns played asynchronously by each player. The title has the option for players to be notified of their turn via e-mail or through Steam turn notifications and several multiplayer games can be undertaken at any one time.

Whereas I am only playing through the admittingly basic campaign at the moment, I find that it offers enough of a challenge at this time. I do, however, look forward to joining my friends in multiplayer matches soon.

The fact that you end up with two copies of the game when you purchase it is a nice bonus, allowing you to gift the spare copy to a friend if you so wish. Highly recommended.

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8 of 9 people (89%) found this review helpful
4.4 hrs on record
Posted: October 26
Okay, so I'm not much of a tactical person, but Frozen Synapse is a lot of fun. Planning out your exact next moves and seeing what the enemy could do in certain situations... and then the rush of seeing everything actually unfold....
It really is a lot of fun. And it's really nice to listen to.
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8 of 9 people (89%) found this review helpful
11.8 hrs on record
Posted: November 13
Frozen Synapse is phenomenal. I bought a multipack ages ago, and remember eyeing it with great interest before release. Finally got around to playing it, and being turn based, it can suck the hours away.

One of the major hooks is that you can simulate the actions you think the enemy will take before you complete your turn. This allows you test a bunch of potential outcomes in advance, and it ratches the tension up tenfold.

There are loads of features built into the client: a chat service (communicate with your opponents without needing Friends list functionality), piles of multiplayer modes, a built in IRC client so you can discuss strategies or find new opponents... There's play-by-email functionality, hotseat (aka pass the keyboard) multiplayer, full coop for the campaign, and I don't think I've even mentioned the DLC yet!

Add all that goodness on top of one of the best soundtracks I've ever heard and a cyberpunk inflected premise and story, and you've got a winner. Immense value for the money. If you have any love for turn-based strategy, be sure to pick it up!
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27 of 45 people (60%) found this review helpful
2.8 hrs on record
Posted: August 18
You know what makes chess the ultimate strategy game that has lasted for thousands of years? It's simplicity.

Frozen Synapse takes the turn-based strategy game genre to an extreme level of meticulousness. This is saying something in a genre that already resembles something like chess with more rules.

I am a long-time fan of turn-based strategy games, with the X-Com iterations holding a special place in my heart (well just the first two and the remake actually), so I am no stranger to intricate control over characters and exhaustive planning for each turn. However, there are two questions that must be answered in the affirmative for any TBS game to be considered "good":
First, are the controls efficient?
Second, is the game fun?

Unfortunately, Frozen Synapse fails on both accounts. The painstaking level of control over every minute movement of your troops is maddening and superfluous. You are the most anal-retentive military commander in all of history, and while the game provides a reasonable explanation for it, your troops are apparently mindless drones. Simply adding more controls over every little movement does not make a TBS game superior to others. Extraneous controls weaken a strategy game's enjoyability by obstructing its very purpose: strategy. Very often, you will find yourself losing rounds/games because you forgot to set a drone to look in a specific direction or to duck at the right moment, or walk quickly/slowly. Not because you didn't realize that those moves were necessary, no, because you FORGOT. There are so many options to set for each individual unit, that you can easily spend an hour just setting up a SINGLE TURN. I am not exaggerating, the multiplayer gives opponents a week to post their turn! This kind of burdening complexity removes the players ability to strategize and gives advantage to the player who is most able to memorize details. Strategy is about out-thinking your opponent's moves and countering them, or recovering from a weaker position with superior tactics, NOT micro-managing the user-interface.

So is it fun? Well, Frozen Synapse insists on you monitoring every sniffle and cough your troops make, so the majority of the time playing this game is spent staring at a screen of unmoving drones and identical walls, running simulation after simulation to determine the highest likely method of success. It would be just as fun to compare tax audits to determine which IRS agent was the most efficient!

Speaking of identical walls, the graphical quality of this game is terrible. I have never before claimed to need high quality graphics in a game, in fact in many ways the fight for ever greater graphics is ruining the industry, but if ever there was a game that needed better graphical design: this is it. The neon colors that honestly looked cool in the trailers and screencaps are horrendous to look at after only ten hours or so of gameplay. Every character looks the same, every wall is identical, you are a robot commander of a robot army killing other robots for no reason whatsoever.

Some of the positive reviews said the game was "easy to get into, but hard to master," and this is an outright lie. This game is hard to get into and hard to master. I will say it again: strategy games require simple controls so the only thing between you and victory is your tactics. Not fun.
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4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
90.6 hrs on record
Posted: November 18
Better controls than the prime version.
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5 of 6 people (83%) found this review helpful
0.8 hrs on record
Posted: December 15
Frozen Synapse - Raymond K. Turcotte

I swear this may be one of the only darn games that you need to play the tutorial to understand how to play the game. But besides that, this game was and is excellent. I heard of this game from the PC Gamer magazine when it first came out. I won this game, I wouldn’t buy it. Over 20$ is too much for me (My opinion whtevr) Thanks to the 2014 holiday I was able to achieve this game I was looking forward to playing. It was exactly what I thought it would be.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
14.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 19
I like tactics games, but didn't think I would like this game, and so passed it over when I first saw it. I couldn't have been more wrong. My friend gifted me his bonus copy, and I have been playing it nonstop since. It seems like a sort of real time/turn based hybrid and can seem very intimidating at first, but at its core it really is just a turn based game that rewards careful planning. You give your soldiers orders that they then carry out over the course of a 5 second round, and you have a chance to revise the orders each round.

The controls seem complicated when you first start as well, but they are actually both remarkably simple and surprisingly powerful - you can give incredibly intricate orders to your troops with only a few clicks and drags. The asynchronys multiplayer lets you take pretty much all the time you need for your turn, and lets you juggle multiple games if your opponent does the same.

The soundtrack is pretty killer, too. If you're on the fence about this game and you like tactics games, you won't go wrong picking this up.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
5.5 hrs on record
Posted: December 16
I am amazed how this has any good reviews.
The standard product is buying the game twice, so you can give it to a friend. Really it looks like it's trying to justify charging 23 bucks for a single sale.

Aside from all other critical thoughts I also had the displeasure of graphical and gameplay bugs in the first 2 hours of simple campaign play.

The game is paradoxical in almost every aspect:

It is a turn based game,
yet ultimately actions are done timebased.

It puts very little effort in the story telling,
yet it drowns the player in expositional dossiers, conversations and monologues. Luckily you can skip them all.
You need to micromanage and possibly run simulations of every nanosecond,
yet the choices you can make are very simple and gameplay lacks any depth.

Machine gunners are the "bread and butter" unit you control very precisely,
yet their aim is so horrendous that engagements outside of shotgun range feel completely luckbased.

Waist high objects give cover,
yet standing on the corner of a wall does not give sideways cover.

Standing behind waist-high cover is an advantage,
yet ducking(so you fit below waist-high cover) has no effect aside from hiding behind cover.




I mentioned gameplay lacking depth, let me go into more detail on that.
Your mindless drones have no inventory and never need to reload. You can not change weaponry, the drones you use or how they are distributed on the map at the start of a singleplayer mission.
The options available are wait, move, aim, duck, ignore all enemies, ignore a specific enemy and prioritze a specific enemy and reversals of these commands.
That's it.
If your guys are in ♥♥♥♥ positions, your enemy has to make a mistake. Your drones can not have more than object in their hands. So unless that object is a grenade thrower or rocket launcher, the only feasible "strategies" are
1. to be in a good position and aim, motionless, at the correct angle.
2. move, preferrably without line of sight, to a better position and do 1.
3. exploit positioning mistakes of the stupid AI and shoot them in the back. If even possible. If not possible, do 1.

If a drone is standing still and an opposed drone comes around the corner, both having the same weapon, equal cover and given all appropriate commands(aim at that direction, focus specific enemy), then the drone that stood still will always win.
There is no time to outmaneuver the enemy drone with your own drone in a single turn, either. Rewarding inaction with 100% chance to win an encounter is atrocious game design.

The graphical bug I encountered seceral times was hatched green neon lines connecting my selected units with my other units for no apparent reason

The gameplay bug I encountered after a particularly long processing time for the first turn, including 2 prompts to kill the program, because it didnt respond.
It changed a unit of mine from a sniper to a machine gunner. While no other downsides, it was an annoyance.


The music was nice, I guess.


In summary, a shallow and unresponsive tactical game that requires huge amounts of micromanaging miniscule movements.
It feels like playing counterstrike without grenades from the top down perspective, which is entirely the wrong perspective for that kind of gameplay and also lacks grenades.

Would not recommend.
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
5.3 hrs on record
Posted: August 1
Great fun with friends.
And the campain is good.
8/10
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
43.4 hrs on record
Posted: June 25
Pros:
-Great soundtrack by Nervous Testpilot
-Good story/Campaign
-Multiplayer is pretty good (since it's asynchronus you can play it regardless of internet speed pretty much)
-Belacqua

Cons:
-In Multiplayer you can't blow up a wall and move a unit through the gap in the same turn, but you can in Single Player.
-Cannot use as ice pack.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
34.6 hrs on record
Posted: June 21
A bit underrated strategy game where you give your troops orders for the next 5 seconds to defeat the enemy troops. The levels look a bit repetitive but every single one of them is randomly generated so you can't just lose until you learn the level and win: You must adjust to the situation and plan carefully.

The atmosphere and story could be maybe described as "controlled chaos"; Even though there are multiple elite soldiers firing away at each other, the game still stays tranquil and beautiful, largely because of the fantastic soundtrack by nervous_testpilot.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
30.5 hrs on record
Posted: June 24
After about 30 hours of gameplay I have to say this is one of the best strategy games I have played in a long time. You have to try and think 10 steps ahead of your opponent. I wish more people would get this game to play online. As a matter of fact, you should, right now actually.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
18.1 hrs on record
Posted: July 5
One of the best strategy games i´ve played in the last few years. I know i was a little late for the party, since the game is allready a couple years old, but i just got it on a Humble Bundle and it´s amazing. Must have, must play. I´m sure im going to spend a lot of time with this one, both on PC and my Android Phone.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
0.6 hrs on record
Posted: August 27
This game is a MUST have in everyones library. Its gameplay is ridiculously easy to understand, its graphics are just unreal (watchdogs aint got ♥♥♥♥ on this), its just alltogether an amazing game. My friends and I sit down and we say "hey what do you wanna play?". Their response is always, "Frozen Synapse of course you dipsh*t". 10/10 would bang.
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3 of 4 people (75%) found this review helpful
32.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 2
Great turn-based strategy game
This game is one-of-a-kind. I love RTS, but there is something to be said about this game. At first glance, the game looks poorly made and of low quality. However, don't let the simple graphics fool you. This game is thoroughly enjoyable and offers indepth planning you wouldn't expect. You plan your turn the same time as the opponent and wait for the outcome. If you love strategy you have got to try this. You won't regret it.
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3 of 4 people (75%) found this review helpful
30.8 hrs on record
Posted: June 29
Have you ever wanted to play a game where your tactical thinking was rewarded without having too much hassle or any difficult mechanics to grasp? Yes? Then this is the game for you.

Frozen Synapse is an absolute wonderful tactical battlefield commander game. You are able to control several of your soldiers on a randomly generated map against either a human or AI player and lead them, showing whether they should duck or stand up, engage or continue on sight, time their actions, etc., all in hopes to out-think your opponent and guess what they will do. You are given planning phases which, although they may be lengthy, give you the chance to test every possible scenerio to your liking, giving you the ultimate think session of your life every turn.

Frozen Synapse also has great co-op in it's expansion pack, which gives you the same tactical fun with a friend. I highly recommend you get it - it's called Red Mode, or something like that. Another great feature this game has is the ability to play multiple games at a time. You get popup invites from other people, which you can either accept or deny, into their games, which allows you to play however many games you want to play over any period of time you like, which leads to the bad parts about this game.

I'm not going to lie, this game isn't perfect. There's no punishing system for abandoning games, which happens a little too often with bad mannered players who don't want to finish a losing game. Not only that, but It does have two or more glitches (you can plan to move your soldier through a wall, but the game says that you can't do that, and an extra move when trying to walk beside a wall, really nothing that major or game-breaking) which can annoy you a little, but it won't consistantly happen to you.

My final verdict for Frozen Synapse is this - if you are a fan of thinking games, especially chess, GET THIS GAME IMMEDIATELY. If you are not, wait for a sale, because you very well might enjoy this game for it's easy-to-understand, but hard-to-master mechanics. A solid NINE out of TEN from me on this wonderful game.
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