Starbound's Universe Is Getting A Complete Overhaul

By William Usher 9 months ago discussion comments
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Class structures, quests, safe havens and Metroidvania style planetary progression are just a few of the things on the table for Starbound, the runaway space-survival success for Chucklefish Studios.

The independent developer (who is now branching into becoming their own publisher, too) released an updated outline for where Starbound is headed and what gamers have to look forward to in updated versions of the game.

As noted in a February 23rd entry on the official Starbound website, lead designer Tiy dropped in to state the following...
“As we said before, the current progression is entirely temporary, existing to provide temporary gameplay whilst we work on the engine. Today I want to share more with you about the games new structure and the beginning of the game.”

“Instead of progressing through the game sector by sector, you’ll advance by upgrading your tech to allow you to visit planets that were otherwise inaccessible due to hazards. An example being a planet with no breathable air. Progression will be less linear and more akin to the kind of progression you find in modern metroidvanias.”

This is great news.

In my previous impressions piece for Starbound, I noted how the game offered grand adventures with no real direction. You progressed in a non-linear way, but also in an aimlessly fruitless way, too.

I like how they want to breakdown the universe into only three sectors: a casual zone, a hostile zone and a PvP zone. That makes sense.

I also like how they want to introduce progression for hazardous planets. For instance, if you visit a moon in the game – and since it has no oxygen – you need the proper equipment to traverse the moon without running out of air and dying.

The team wants to address the slight conundrum of lacking player progression by giving gamers more direction and focus in the way they build and advance their characters. For instance, the team is introducing columns for those who want to focus on agriculture and farming, adventuring and building. That seems kind of cool.

So now if you want to be Martha Stewart in space, you can. You want to be the galactic Guy Fieri? You can. You want to be a space jockey version of Mike Rowe? Hop to it, buddy.

One of the more exciting aspects is the trading zone – where people who either venture the galaxy or have built up their own little empire on a planet – can head to the zone and sell their goods for pixels, paving a way for a diverse commerce of goods and currency. That seems interesting.

Right now, there is no way to sell anything in the game, so whatever you have that you think is worth anything, you just have to hold on to it. There is, however, an ore refinery so you can convert unused ore into pixels; but I think a trading zone is far better idea.

With the new patch rolled out to help the team handle updates a lot easier and Chucklefish getting their new studio up and running, I expect we'll see great things coming out for Starbound in the near future.

The game is currently available right now on Steam or through the official website in its Early Access form. If you don't want to deal with early development builds, you might want to stay away for now.
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