Into The Stars Gets Bumper Update, Includes Babies

In space, they say, no one can hear you scream. Which is just as well if you’re raising a baby on board the Ark-13. Since we first visited Fugitive Games’ first-person space captain-a-thon Into The Stars [official site] in January, it’s been successfully Kickstarted and thrust full-speed into Steam Early Access. It’s now received a pretty wholesome update, adding a load of new features.

In what is its largest update so far, Into The Stars 0.1 now includes a ‘Civilian Management’ system which grants players control of their ship’s inhabitants. Four components directly affect the Civilian City population’s well-being: health, happiness, order and rations – the first three of which are directly influenced by your competence (or not) as captain.

Rations can be distributed in values marked high, normal or low and have a direct bearing on your City’s growth population. Which means babies. Which means even if you’re shit at combatting permadeath, so long as you’re good at philanthropy you might just make it to the elusive Titus Nova – your mission objective.

All of the above relates back to keeping your civilians happy. If film, tv, books, and, well, video games, has taught us anything, though, is nigh on impossible amid perilous space expedition. That said, if you’re willing to try, Into The Stars now incorporates three states of civilian well-being: happy, unhappy and angry, indicated by helpful emojis on the management screen, all of which tie into the aforementioned health, happiness and order elements. Keeping the equilibrium, then, is pretty important.

Other new features include ‘Skorn Wreckage’ – remnants of Skorn encounters with previous Ark ships, ‘Gas Clouds’ – pockets of gas lined with valuable resources, and ‘Hidden Storage Containers’ – space pirate loot stashes, all of which add variety to the exploration aspects of the game; all of which echo the game’s Oregon Trail influence as noted by the developers from the outset.

Speaking to PCGamesN, Fugitive director Ben Jones talked of how fervent the community has been since Into The Stars entered Early Access. “It’s everything we thought it would be and more,” said Jones. “It’s a crazy process. We can’t build all this stuff. I think one of the things that surprised us is the amount of expectations for things we hadn’t had planned. And also expectations for things that we consider more a component of complete games.”

Into The Stars is available on Steam Early Access for £14.99.

6 Comments

  1. jasta85 says:

    glad they are still adding features, it felt pretty bare bones up until now. I really hope they add some depth to the combat system as right now it’s purely a matter of timing (made easy by combat pause).

  2. Maxheadroom says:

    saw a review/lets play (forget who’s) on this a while ago and while it looked interesting the combat put me off, has any of that changed?

    • trjp says:

      I tried the latest release yesterday and can confirm the combat is still far-too-prevelant and rather crap.

      I’m not sure that will change – they seem to have chosen that style of gameplay/combat and are likely to keep it – and as-such I won’t be bothering with it because it’s just DIRE

  3. Eleven says:

    This was the only Kickstarted game that I have been disappointed by. I could have kicked myself for not funding FTL, which turned out to be my favourite rogue-lite in years, and this was all but promising to be the next FTL by repeatedly name dropping it in their marketing pitch. It turned out to be a very by-the-numbers Oregon Trail clone, complete with random inexplicable events (your colonists have died of space-dysentery!) and simplistic mini-games (rock-paper-scissors combat, oh my)

    The quote from the developers is telling: “I think one of the things that surprised us is the amount of expectations for things we hadn’t had planned”. The community is “fervent” because the developers weren’t entirely clear about how the game was going to actually play in their pitch, and this resulted in a lot of wishful thinking from their audience, myself included, for a game the developers had no intention of making.

  4. TheSplund says:

    Kinda pretty but rather noisy. Still it will appeal to many and has the advantage over Elite:D (which I enjoy) of seemingly having a lot less dull moments (which aren’t that bad a sthing)

  5. vorador says:

    If my experience with Early Access games tell me something, is that you buy them by what they have, not what they promise to have.

    So i think i will wait. Sounds really good, but is still barebones.