StarMade is an open ended sandbox game for the PC. During its ongoing alpha phase, it's a free-to-play title, with pre-purchase of all later versions being available on platforms such as Steam, or the game's website. It offers both single player and multiplayer game modes.
The game puts the player in a very large, randomly generated universe. They then need to build themselves a ship with various blocks and then find out what they want to do. The entire game is made out of blocks much like Minecraft which is one of its inspirations.
The game's web page, forum and official wiki can be found here.
Starmade provides examples of:
- Alliance Meter: You can declare war on player-made factions. If you attack a shop owned by the Trading Guild, they will send ships to attack you, and if you continue attacking them, you can no longer buy things from their shops.
- Binary Suns: Some of the generated star systems have two stars at the center.
- Damn You, Muscle Memory!: For some time, if you were used to playing Minecraft, you'd find yourself making a lot of messes due to the mouse controls to place and remove blocks being the exact opposite. Eventually, a setting to remedy this was introduced.Duncan Jones: My brain just cannot get used to this right-click left-click change.Simon Lane: This right-click left-click thing is just, bullshit.Lewis Brindley: I don't know what possessed the creators to switch those round when we're so used to the other way.
- Deflector Shields: You can purchase shield generators for your ships. More can be bought to create a stronger shield, but each shield needs power to function which means you will need more power generators.
- Evil Is Not Well-Lit: Pirate space stations are very dimly lit compared to the other generated stations.
- Evil Makes You Monstrous: Pirate-controlled space stations are covered in tentacles made of purple metal and glowing ice crystals, at least until an update replaced these stations with more reasonable (and more sinister) stations.
- Fantasy Metals: All the minerals in the game (save for cinnabar) are fictional. However, some have names that closely parallel a real-life mineral, such as Jisper resembling jasper.
- Faster-Than-Light Travel: The jump drive block allows you to jump a distance while displaying some cool effects. However, by default, the jumps are not that far and you wouldn't leave the system in one jump (the jump drives are also energy hogs and can take forever to recharge). But if you really want to feel like you are piloting the Millennium Falcon and making "0.5 past light speed" you can always crank up the maximum distance in the configuration files.
- Flat World: Averted. As of Update 0.15, planets are dodecahedrons.
- Hyperspeed Escape: When you are outgunned and/or outnumbered by an enemy player or some pirates and your Cool Starship is being shot up to bits, this may be your best option.
- Blind Jump: A common form of Hyperspeed Escape, since setting coordinates can take several seconds. This will jump you the maximum distance in the direction your ship is facing. With the Starmade universe being relatively densely populated, this carries a reasonable risk of ending up in a star or next to a pirate station.
- Item Crafting: The player can set up factories and use them to create items.
- Lava Adds Awesome: Lava can be found inside of asteroids, as well as added to ships and other structures as (admittedly very cool) lighting that does not hurt the structure.
- No Plot? No Problem!: The game is currently a sandbox without much lore or any plot whatsoever. There are official plans to allow some form of career, but not much is known beyond that.
- Obvious Beta: Played straight in older versions, but completely averted in more recent releases. It is still a work-in-progress game, so this is to be expected.
- Procedural Generation: All the planets, asteroids and structures you can find are generated. The map is generated as the player explores.
- Point Defenseless: Averted. The BOBBY AI used on almost all turrets have shockingly high accuracy (even being able to shoot down missiles), and this accuracy increases with difficulty. However, poor turret design can cause this trope to be played straight.
- Space Base: Space bases can be found throughout the map. The Pirates strike from their space bases. The player can also build their own.
- Space Battle: You will have lots of these.
- Space Friction: Asteroids are subject to this. Ships can enable it for themselves using a "motion dampeners" setting in order to decelerate without using thrust. It can also be set to activating whenever the ship is not being piloted, to prevent it from accidentally running away on inertia. Could arguably double as Anti-Frustration Features.
- Space Pirates: You can find pirate space stations armed with turrets, each one contains some random treasure. Pirates can also send out random attacks at you. They are the only NPC enemies in the game currently.
- Space Station: Many structures can be found throughout the map or be built by the player themselves. Derelicts are good sources for scrap material.
- Stealth in Space: A cloaking device is one available ship component.
- Wide Open Sandbox: You start the game spawned next to a store and you're free to do whatever you want. Mine asteroids, fight space pirates, recreate your favorite spaceship or just explore.
- Macross Missile Massacre, Beam Spam and More Dakka: Ships can be built with as many weapons as can be afforded, and fire them as long the power generators are up to par. Thus, all of these are very valid options for ship design, and look quite awesome in action. However, there's no DPS advantage to many small guns over one one large, and excessively many outputs are less power efficient, meaning it's a somewhat situational design choice.