Last year, I found myself addicted to Stardew Valley, the Harvest Moon-esque farm life simulator released by Chucklefish Games. I farmed, raised animals, filled up the museum, made friends, got married (Elliott, in case you’re wondering…) and explored to the deepest, darkest parts of the mines.
Whilst I loved the game, it didn’t quite feel infinite. There were town boundaries, a limited number of mine levels, and once I’d completed the Community Centre I didn’t feel like there was much of a goal anymore.
So imagine my delight when I discovered that the developer had released not only another game, but a science fiction game. I love sci-fi. For several years on my previous blog I ran an event dedicated to the genre in all its forms every November (and it’s quite honestly something I’m hoping to continue over here). And just to top it all off, this game was an open world sandbox, which is a description that will ALWAYS encourage me to give a game a shot. The freedom of roaming a huge world on my own terms, and being able to create stuff? Count me in.
Starbound opens with the player fleeing their home on a damaged ship, and requires you to use the resources of the nearest planet to get things up and running again. Whilst there are plenty of side-quests and a main story, the possibilities are pretty much endless. You can choose to be an explorer and lay your claim to planets, found colonies and see sprawling cities pop up, or even just kill everything in sight if that works for you…
I’ve played around 40 hours of the game so far, maybe 5 or so of those with a friend (yes, it has online co-op!), and I’m already proud of my progress. I have a castle with a LIBRARY, a cellar that has my own little laboratory, and around 25 colonists in various types of houses.
You can also recruit crew members for your spaceship and BUILD YOUR OWN SPACESTATION (I haven’t gotten that far, sadly). All of the planets and galaxies are randomly generated, and have different types of atmosphere, climate, threats etc. For example, there is a toxic jungle planet nearby to me at the moment, but I don’t think I’m quite ready to face that one just yet. And not only can you fly above the planet, but you can dig, dig, dig right down to the core – but be prepared to face whatever might be waiting for you down there!
Whilst exploring on my own, I managed to find a little village of llamas, who were apparently all Scottish (??!), a tiny frog town and some mushroom houses that were occupied by mushroom people… all on one planet. Whilst playing with my friend, we found a ‘Glitch’ town (medieval themed, but occupied by robots), and may have accidentally stolen a few items to furnish our own homes, which led to a long (and fatal) showdown with the guards.
This is the first in what I hope will be a fairly long series of posts, sharing my Starbound adventures.