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Play OverviewPlay Overview

Starbound (2018) is an action-adventure game from the developer of Terraria about the exploration of space. It's a world viewed from side-on, with simple visuals that enable it to offer complex systems and hundreds of items for players to discover their own adventures. You play in a procedurally generated space universe where you can explore and discover new weapons, armour, and items. You can also visit towns and villages inhabited by various intelligent lifeforms.

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 Ellen Robertson and updated 3 months ago.
Kids not old enough for this yet? There are lots of games similar to Starbound. Here are some similar younger-rated games:

Play StylePlay Style

This is an Adventure and Strategy game with Action, Fighting, Platform, Shooting and Simulation elements. You can play this by yourself or as a 8-player online game.

You can play this game in the following styles:


Play Time: This game will take between 20 hours and 25 hours to complete.


Age RatingsAge Ratings

Content Rating

Rated PEGI 12 for arcade violence. The player’s character uses a large sword to attack the occasional non-detailed human character and fantasy characters, hits will result in small amounts of non-realistic pixelated blood. Characters disappear when killed. Similarly, the player’s character when attacked by a large fantasy character will die and disappear in a small pixelated red cloud.
Users Interact: The game enables players to interact and communicate with each other, so may expose players to language usually associated with older rated games.

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.

Skill Level

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.


Starbound usually costs £11.99.


Steam Store PC £11.99
Steam Store Mac £11.99
XBox Store PC Free Free

Xbox Game Pass

There are no additional in-game purchases, loot boxes, adverts or subscription costs.

DetailsGame Details

Release Date: 20/03/2018

Out Now: Mac and PC

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Players: 1 (8 online)

Genres: Adventure, Strategy (Action, Fighting, Platform, Shooting and Simulation)

Accessibility: 0 features documented (Tweet Developer )

Components: 2D Side-On, Day and Night, Open World and Pixels

Developer: Chucklefish Ltd (@ChucklefishLtd)

Taming Gaming Book Written by parents for parents, the database complements the in-depth discussion about video game addiction, violence, spending and online safety in the Taming Gaming book. We are an editorially independent, free resource without adverts that is supported by partnerships.

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