How does your child play this? Alone, with friends, with family? How did they discover it and what kept them coming back for more?
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You start on a spacecraft after the destruction of Earth and must develop your craft to go on an intergalactic peacekeeping mission. Your shuttle orbits a habitable planet and an adventure begins that takes you hurtling across the universe. It's a combination of specific quests and overarching narrative-led open-world game-play.
The result is a game that's all about curiosity. What seems simple soon expands into a huge play space. You start with just a few tools but soon discover there are all manner of ways to interact and work with the environment. Like Terraria, it invites players to use their imagination, and provides a world that responds in surprising ways when they do.
Our examiner, Andy Robertson, first checked Starbound 4 years ago. It was re-examined by Jo Robertson and updated 3 months ago.
Rated for younger players in the US. ESRB rated EVERYONE 10+ for Alcohol Reference, Crude Humor, Fantasy Violence and Mild Blood. Players use swords to attack and defeat fantastical creatures (e.g., mushroom men, blobs, cave monsters); successful hits are indicated by health-point numbers and tiny splashes of blood. A small blood splash can also be seen when the player's character is defeated. A few game items contain references to alcohol: a Mug Hat resembling a frothy mug of amber liquid; and a Brewmaster's Hat depicting two cans attached to a baseball cap. In one sewer-like level, a golem creature can be seen dropping brown coil items that resemble animal droppings.
8+ year-olds usually have the required skill to enjoy this game. Still, it's important for parents and guardians to consider the maturity required to process the game content. You need to be able to persevere and have the imagination that inspires you to take on big challenges. There's some detailed control of the characters and the building of structures. This is kept relatively simple because of the 2D visuals. Youngers players can enjoy the game in Creative mode. Older, more skilful, players will focus more on progression.
Release Date: 20/03/2018
Out Now: Mac and PC
Content Rating: PEGI 12
Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds
Players: 1 (8 online)
Components: 2D Side-On, Day and Night, Open World and Pixels