I recently discovered StarMade, which looks an awful lot like a stand-alone Minecraft mod pack, but trust me when I say, this is more than just a Minecraft texture pack. StarMade is really fun.
If you ever played the game Noctis, a DOS-based space sim where you flew around space, landing on whatever planet you wanted, just to see what was there, you’ll find that same sense of wonder here. You start by building a space ship from blocks, Minecraft-style, with different blocks providing different functions. You need a few requisite parts (like the ship’s core) but you can pretty much build it out however you want. I built a really basic design and set out to find a planet to land on.
Instead, I found asteroids. I landed on one, exited my ship and floated around it, just to see what it was like, and then blew parts of it up with my cannons. I flew off towards again, headed towards the nearest planet, when I got jumped by AI ships. These ships blew off two of my cannons and forced me to find a safe spot to do repairs. I found my respite on a desert world.
That’s my ship, on the surface of this desert-themed world. Gravity was in effect here so I bounced around and explored the surface before returning and getting in my ship to fly across the landscape instead. It was then that I noticed something interesting.
Unlike asteroids, planets are disc-shaped. This makes sense from a game-play perspective but was a temporarily saddening from an immersion standpoint. Of course, all was forgotten when I saw my next planet.
Now that’s an alien world. I wanted to set up some kind of camp here, with my first goal being a garage for my ship. I dug blocks of the ground up and made my ship’s shelter, only to find…
… my ship didn’t fit in the shape. Crap. I rejiggered my garage, and after some finicky backing-in, parked my ship in its shelter.
I really like StarMade. There’s that exploration aspect that was so fun in Noctis, combined with Minecraft-style building and customizable space ships. You can even buy and sell at shops in space. Something tells me this won’t be the last thing I write here about StarMade.
Have you played StarMade? If so, what did you think of it?