Steam Series - Starbound
Some funny looking person
Starbound is a galaxy based 2D (2 Dimension) sandbox style game. It features singleplayer, multiplayer, and you can create servers for people to play on. The game can be seen as a mixture between Terraria and Minecraft. It also follows a pixel-like art style. Let's give you the usual run down of interesting stuff I've noticed, and what makes the game unique.
Starbound is riddled with features that you might know and love from other games. It also has a host of its own, giving it some interesting depth and character, splitting it apart from other games.
Blocks - The world is made up of tiny individual blocks, metal ores and other ore materials. There is two versions of this, the ground you walk on and the back wall. You can harvest these with pickaxes or your matter manipulator. With a simple left click to dig into the side you're walking on and passing over. While right click allows you to dig the background out. This makes house building extremely easy with simple left clicking, holding shift for an individual block placement, and holding the right mouse button to place the back wall.. Unlike Terraria, where you must craft the back wall out of the material you've dug up.
Combat - Combat has a few things that I've noticed outright and I've not seen it in other games. It has a host of weapons to start off, axes, swords, shields, guns, bows, crossbows, spears, and staff weapons. Guns can be from pistols, to SMGs, to grenade launchers and rocket launchers and anything in between! Staff weapons aren't really magic related, they're more like a technological magic, such as having the ability to teleport giant boulders to your position to crush enemies with.
Blocking - Blocking is very simple in this game, right clicking with a sword or shield, will raise the weapon against your body or the shield up, blocking an enemy's attack. Blocks have a duration bar, attack enough times and you'll have your guard broken, blocks can also defend you against any type of projectile, even boss fights. This will also work well with depth for melee combat in multiplayer.
Energy - Energy powers many things, your suit's tech, your ranged weapons, tools such as grappling hooks. Energy is represented in a green bar, it will empty depending on the consumption of energy on the item you're using. Grenade launchers might allow you to fire 3 grenades before the energy needs to refill, your light rig tech will slowly decline it. Your energy levels will vary depending what armor you're currently wearing. There is even a set that is specialized for energy use.
Solar Systems - Solar systems are the main locations of the game, they're endless and can be explored constantly. The sun's in each system are related to what kind of planets you'll find. A radioactive star might yield radioactive planets, a colder star might have its system make up of icy planets with frozen seas.
Planets - Each planet you'll encounter won't ever be the same from the last. Planets are broken down into biome types and difficulty. To help beginning players, you'll tend to see many forest biomes, with the easiest difficulty, while some of the more dangerous ones are volcanic planets, with extreme temperature, dangerous creatures, and hostile weather. (I.E Meteor showers or acid rain) Each planet is randomly generated and might have unique additions, like an abandoned research building from one of the races, or a cultist temple created from bits of old tech blocks. If you dig into the ground of a planet, you can go very far down, even going near to the core of a planet. You might find that the interior of a planet might be different from the layers of its outside. You might find odd blocks made of flesh, or you'll find tar and old bones scattered through out. You might even find some farm-able/consumable food that you can make use of.
Survival - (Removed Feature Currently) Starbound has a survival system alike Minecraft. You need to constantly eat food or you'll starve and die. You have a bar that displays your hunger level and your character will speak about their condition. You'll also have to defend yourself from hostile creatures on each planet that are native to it and the weather, should that light rain fall turn into acid rain, the desert planet you're on has a sandstorm with debris.
Temperature - (Removed Feature Currently) Temperature is gauged by a thermometer. when nightfall approaches, or when you're on a snowy planet, your temperature will begin to drop. Its best to create a campire (or carry one) or place some torches down to heat you back up. You can also craft warm clothing to keep you warm permanently.
Your character - This game has some really unique customization. You have several races to pick, each race is largely equal with some added flair as unique racial armors that will grant special abilities, and weapons. and you'll also have backstory to what your character has done, or had happen to them, to isolate them. Customization boils down to: clothing, personality (the pose they take when they are standing), colors, and hair or head type.
Down below are the races with enough detail to understand their ways of life.
Glitch: An unknown robotic race created by an extraterrestrial race long ago. They are stuck in a medieval era age, their clothing, buildings, and leadership are all medieval themed. Glitch will state their type of emotion when speaking. When Glitch mate, they build another glitch together, this can lead to some being free minded. Free Glitch are seem in Glitch society as outcasts and acts against their nature.
Floran: A violent, carnivorous plant race, they enjoy eating meat and stabbing things. They are friendlier to the Glitch race, due to Glitch teaching them such things as mathematics and science. They are very tribal, and they tend to live in giant trees. Most of their houses are filled with primitive furniture, and animal furs and skins.
Avian: A race of humanoid birds, they're flightless by nature. They are styled to an Aztec way of life, they are friendly to all of the races. You might find their burial grounds on many planets, guarded by hostile zombie-like(by the way they walk and their quest to protect the crypts) Avian guards.
Apex: An ape-like race that used to look similar to humans, until they chose vast technological advances that devolved them into an ape-like race. Their style is futuristic, and their way of life is very similar to the book 1984, they have branches of Government that they refer to as the MiniKong and "Big Ape".
Hylotl: A race of aquatic people, they have an almost porpoise/fish look and have fins. They are styled after feudal Japan and wear such things a kimonos. They are evicted from their home planet by the Floran, and tend to be sacrificed by Avians. They are a peaceful race and do not seek conflict.
Novakid: A starlike race, they have brands of an icon on their face that powers their star-like body. They are western themed and the only race to start off with guns and can craft guns. They give off a slight glow in darkness. They are known for their short attention spans and struggle with grasping interracial social interactions.
Humans: Normal human beings, they are from Earth and follow a modern/futuristic style.
Your Ship - Your ship can be used as a home base, you can build and live inside of it. It also acts as your form of transportation around the galaxy. You teleport down to planets you've traveled to through the use of an on-board teleporter. You click an arrow on your hud that'll bring you back to your ship, or send you down to a planet. You also need to keep your ship stocked with fuel in order to travel.
Non player characters- NPCs make up a lot of what this game has to offer. Traveling to planets, you might meet a temple of hostile cultists practicing their dark arts. Or a village of Avians happy to sell their goods to traveling players. Each race of NPCs have their unique style villages and npcs. Guards will defend each of these villages and towns. They will ask that you holster your weapon while traveling around. Attacking any NPCs or guard will make the town hostile, guards will attack on sight, civilians run in terror from you, or they might even try to fight you. You can also talk to NPCs and get a thought from them. Races will act accordingly to what race you are. Florans will praise seeing a Glitch player and ask them such things as "How to maths". While Florans might let a human know how delicious they are to eat. While a Glitch player might walk into a Glitch village and be taunted by the guards for being an outcast. (Note, unless you attack the friendly/passive NPCs they will not turn hostile to you.)
Danger : Do not attempt love on the wildlife
The Winter Update and changes from it.
The Winter Update changed Starbound dramatically. I won't go into all of the changes and spoil the fun things. Here are a few that they've changed.
Survival - Survival is no longer in the game. The reason why I still added it up above in features, because there might be a chance that survival is remade and overhauled and placed back into the game. Currently at June 2015, survival is still removed from the game, (if it is added back, I will update information accordingly.)
Ships addons - Ship expansions are now added, this allows you to live completely in your spaceship and forever traveling the stars. I recommend if you're going to play Starbound with friends or on a multiplayer server, be sure to make your ship your home. You wouldn't want to lose a nice house you've made with all of your items in it on some planet in the server. If you plan to play Starbound alone, feel free to build your house anywhere or use your ship.
Temperature - Technically temperature is still around but not how it was before. Instead you now will unlock tech that gives you protection against certain environments. There's a suit for Heat, Radiation, and Cold. Each suit supplies oxygen and allows you to go into water and breath.
Pets - Each race has a unique pet. These pets will require a food bowl and a pet shelter to sleep in. Pets will have a unique taste with food. Icons will show if the food they eat is their favorite with a heart icon, or its a grumble cloud when they don't like it. You can buy a bowl and shelter at the Terramart in the Outpost. Make sure to keep your pets well fed!
Ship AI - Each ship is equipped with an AI computer to help you begin, depending on your race each AI is accustomed to their style and humor. Example: Glitch's have a Glitch Wizard AI.
Bosses - Are overhauled and no longer require a craftable item that summons them. You now complete quests in the hub outpost, earning your way up to finding the location of a boss and fighting it. The boss maps vary, some might be an intricate maze to get to them, or simply an open field and being approached by them. Boss levels are protected from being destroyed, this prevents players from cheating the boss fights and easily beating them.
Ship types between each race
The soundtrack for this game is a type of classic almost-orchestra like music. There are many calm toned songs that make exploring space a relaxing endeavor.
You can even own instruments found through out the planets. They will include such things as flutes, pianos, electric guitars, drums, bass guitars, and so much more! You can create your own band of players and play many songs together as a formed band.
You can even use a website that has songs in ABC format. You can download and install them to play in Starbound.
I'm a huge fan of sandbox games. Especially sci-fi themed ones. Starbound is a perfect game for those seeking a sandbox game in space, or just generally love Minecraft, Terraria, and other sandbox themed games.
I hope this hub was appealing to you and you might try Starbound
Starbound can be found on Steam
It is still in early access as a beta, the developers constantly update players on any new additions and updates to the game.
I highly recommend using the Starbounder wiki for any help, recipes, and items.