Heat Signature is a space stealth game developed by Tom Francis (through his company Suspicious Developments).
Starting out as a newly independent faction operating a lone space station in a cluster of stars, the player controls character after character, performing missions to build the faction's reputation and convincing other stations to join them. Each character each has their own personal mission which motivates them, but permadeath is always a risk, causing the loss of that character's items. Although there are four characters to pick from at any time, they do not share any items or currency. They do, however, all contribute to the faction's liberation meter. When this tops out, another station can be liberated to join, often bringing new benefits or making new items available, as well as a special mission for each station. Other than the ongoing growth of the independent faction, the player is allowed to travel the nebula and do as they please.
Missions are procedurally generated, as is almost everything else. The player must pilot their small pod to the target's ship, which is flying through space, and complete a task. These can include assassination, theft, kidnapping or rescue. Most missions require at least some stealth, although very few penalize the player for being as loud and violent as they please. There can be limitations on missions, such as time limits, or requirements that the player meet certain goals; keeping everyone alive or leaving no witnesses, for instance. Some missions can even further the character in their personal mission.
Characters are able to be retired at any time, with special mention of achievements chronicled on the wall of an elevator at the back of friendly stations. When characters achieve a certain level of notoriety, their actions have less consequence and contribute less to the overall Liberation score. Once retired, an item of the character's can be named and passed on to be found in future characters' careers.
Tom started development of the game on December the 1st, 2013. He maintains a development blog at the website www.heatsig.com.