Starbound — a hardcore survival adventure
Whilst I wait in limbo for my replacement motherboard to arrive and grace my new PC build, I find myself dabbling away in random games and not really finding anything to pass the time in. Apart from Dungeon Defenders with my partner anyway, and that's pretty sporadic as he's very muchly into Apex Legends at the moment.
Today I decided to try Starbound for the hundredth time.
I played hundreds of hours of this back when it was in early access and I loved it. Until they hardcoded the hotbar into some weird left-and-right-hand concoction just as they released it. Blugh.
Anyway, I've attempted to just "get over" my disappointment with the hotbar and I was succeeding, except every time I played I would get these insane frame drops and game freezes. I'm not the only one. Reddit, Steam Discussions, the Starbound forum... those with both old computers and brand new beasts... there are hundreds of people complaining about these issues.
Today I thought I would do something different... I launched the game in 😱32 bit mode😱 just to see what would happen. The answer? NO FRAME DROPS. NO GLITCHES. NO FREEZING FREEZES.
Excited by the prospect of playing this without the frustration of frames dropping all the way to zero every thirty seconds, I went back into the menu and rolled a Hardcore Survival character!! 😁
I named her the ever optimistic The Doomed One and prepared to take her as far as I could whilst I wait for my new PC to finally function. May this be the time-waster I've been searching for while waiting for my new motherboard. 🤞
I skipped the intro/tutorial, but basically, I am the sole survivor of some intergalactic peacekeeper group after Earth was destroyed. On my broken ship with only a snarky AI and a cat to keep me company, we break down above an unknown planet and I'm off to start my new life as a wandering nomad.
After landing on the planet, I established a quick base for protection. Every animal I've come across on this planet so far has been a hostile menace.
One of the very first items I craft is a Hunting Bow so I have more of a chance of harvesting meat and special items from the various beasties I kill. I'll need it until I get a little farming area set up, which I probably won't do until I find a planet to call my home.
My goal at the moment is to find 20 core fragments, which I can either find deep within the bowels of this planet or after defeating a little mini-boss in a cave somewhere. That's the usual setup for the beginning of the game anyway.
Instead of following the goal, I decide to just mine a bit and explore underground. xD
I find a secret door which my AI tells me is a challenging area. Considering I'm not wearing any armour or anything yet, I decide to not take the challenge yet. I'm in Hardcore mode! I don't want to die yet.
I found some delicious mushrooms while exploring underground, then after running scared from a monster and falling down a hole, I survive, heal up, and make my way out of the depths.
After smelting all of the ore I found, I had enough to make some pants and a helmet for armour, but not enough to make a chestpiece.
Adamant that I wanted a full set of gear, I returned to the depths with plans to find enough iron ore to finish my first set. xD
But fate had other plans, as I found the area with the mini-boss that drops the core fragments I need to continue the main story.
I absolutely cheesed the miniboss, of course, by standing on a wooden platform and shooting him with my hunting bow. Soon he and all of his little minions were dead and in the crates surrounding him I found a gun!
It's not the best gun ever, but it's nice to have another weapon to use. And, of course, I picked up his core fragments.
Even though I had the core fragments, I didn't want to progress just yet. I ran back under the ground until I found more iron ore, then rushed back to my little base of operations to craft my chest piece.
At last, I had a full set of beginner's armour! I'm still squishy as hell and don't feel ready for anything super challenging, but I'm a bit more protected at least.
I ran around the planet until I found the gateway where I would use the core fragments I discovered...
...and portaled to a great space station!
Here I will be able to do several quests, one of which unlocks a few movement perks for me so I can dash around a bit quicker and double-jump and things. Things that will make planet traversal and danger-dodging much smoother. 😁 I just need to find a little bit more gold to unlock one of the things. I had enough silver and copper for the other two perks.
After running around the space station and picking up all the quests, I at last made my way past the space station to where a little old lady sat in a hovering wheelchair and told me many things.
She's a protector just like me, but she's old and broken now. As I'm the last functioning protector in the galaxy, it's up to me to save the galaxy from evil and certain doom! But first I'll need to repair my ship!
I'm not really up to galaxy saving, not yet, but I'll happily get my ship repaired so I can explore the galaxy! 😁
I visit the repair-man who tells me what I need, and that's my next destination for when I feel brave enough. The Erchius Mining Facility. First "dungeon" of the game. With a boss inside that I can't cheese like I did with the miniboss.
Will I survive this beast and repair my ship? Or will my hardcore adventure come to a very swift end before it even truly begins?
Until next time! 😁