Journeys is a diary of one noob’s playthrough of the beta version of Starbound. Using no wikis or guides, readers will experience what it is like to be a sentient android stuck in a vast, randomly generated universe.
I feel pretty dumb for deciding to make this a weekly article. My potential failure did not dawn on me until I tried to load up my game this last weekend. As I started up the game, I was greeted with blank character selection screen. Ram Grind was deleted. With the release of a few new patches, Chucklefish (the developer) decided it would be best to delete my character. There is even a disclaimer on the start-up screen about character deletions. Oh well. Luckily, catching up to where I was last week goes much quicker now that I know what I am doing.
Week 2 :
The Search for Iron A Son is Born!
Ram Grind Jr. is the name of my newest character. Like his father, he has a thirst for exploration! Unlike his father…he sports an exposed brain. Since all the worlds in Starbound are randomly generated, even for new characters, I am unable to return to Alpha Omega Kass 7449 V. However, this new planet seems to be just as good, if not better than 7449. To catch up where I was last week, I quickly constructed a new home. Using my knowledge of spacial recognition and advanced geometry, I add a second floor to accompany my various crafting benches. After my crafting table is set, and my campfire is lit, my quest texts give me the task of creating a forge to smelt some metal. Metal in Starbound is extremely important, as it allows players to construct better equipment, which helps them explore and collect much quicker. It also allows for the creation of advanced weapons and armor, which is desperately needed to explore the more difficult planets. Using my campfire and some cobblestones, I am able to create the forge. Splendid music plays as I complete my quest, and then I am tasked with finding some iron ore to smelt. Onward!
Going against the mold of every 2D game ever, I proceed to head to my left. After a few hills and humps, I encounter some pink Togepi-esque creatures. Turns out, their cute appearance matches their temperament, as they are neutral and do not attack my soft human brain on sight. Hopping along, I find a cave. Caves are the easiest way to find minerals, as the usually lead to deposits of copper or iron.
Purple, tentacle-like vines greet me as I make my way down through the crust of this planet. Water deposits and strange noises are my only friends in this dark cave. Helping me guide my way are some torches and a flashlight which I acquired from my ship. Lighting and water in Starbound behave in unique and realistic ways; water can be drained and it flows over bumps fluidly, and torchlight moves and flutters. My flashlight on the other hand offers a solid beam. As I continue my expedition, I encounter a few deposits of copper and iron ores. While my descent starts off peaceful enough, my first hostile enemy emerges. These chubby salamander-like bipeds have a charge move that hits for a lot of damage. Not only that, but it can knock Ram Grind Jr. a good distance. Oblivious to this threat, I choose to engage the creatures. After a few sword hits, the beast hits me with a charge move, which sends me plummeting into the depths, where I make small crater on impact. Death #1.
Death in Starbound in handled quite nicely. Killing enemies, completing quests, and finding treasurers rewards the player with Pixels. These are a generic currency used in creating more powerful equipment and weapons. Upon death, you lose a small handful of pixels and are sent back to your house. While this is a minor inconvenience, I’m sure the developers will eventually add a hardcore mode, such as permadeath or loss of items. As I revive at my bed, I decide to take a break from the treacherous caves, and explore more of the outside world.
Past the cave, I encounter signs of civilization! Their house seems to be a safe-haven from the sala-men, and they appear to be friendly enough. As I enter their home, one of the two friendly flora-persons is attacked by a new type of enemy. These black-bellied dog men make short work of the citizen as the other one flees in terror. Using my bow, I am able to pick off the beast, harvesting it’s meat, which can be cooked and consumed to help stave off hunger. Alone in the house, I do what any reasonable, self-aware android would do, I rob them blind. The chest on the top floor is filled with pixels, leather and some iron! Making away back to mi casa, I put my newly collected ore in the forge and rest my head down on my bed. The faint glow from the forge keeps me warm as the night approaches. Tomorrow, we go deeper!
Next week: Deep, Dark Depths