Wobbly physics crafting game Planetoid Pioneers [official site] makes perfect sense when you see it, but it takes a lot of words to explain fully. Here are those words: it’s a 2D physics building game set upon and inside planetoids in which you must survive, gather resources, fight enemies and craft vehicles, with a creative mode in which you can make your own sprites, construct your own planets and creatures, and share them with others via PNG image files. It’s on Steam Early Access now as a ‘Contributor Edition’ designed for those who want to make things for the game, but there’s more you need to know below.
That’s not all that needs explaining. There’s also that the items you create for the game can be shared via the Steam Workshop (or anywhere online and then dragged and dropped into game), but that developers Data Realms are also operating their own Steam Item Workshop which will offer a curated selection of user-created work. The creators get a cut of those sales.
Planetoid Pioneers is being made by folks who made Cortex Command, and therefore they’re pretty familiar with the early access mode. That game was similarly 2D, physicsy, unfinished at launch and, in the eyes of some, unfinished still when finished. I never played it enough to diagnose its problems, but I liked Data Realms’ first game for many of the same reasons I like the look of this one. Mainly that they both have robots and the robots fall and tumble in a comical way. I wrote more about the game after last year’s Gamescom, if you’re looking for more examples of what it can do.
The last thing you absolutely need to know before you consider buying this version of the game, however, is that it currently costs more than the final game will. “At the beginning of our Early Access period following our launch on April 15th this year, we will be asking for significantly more than what the ‘full’ game that leaves Early Access will cost,” says the game’s Steam page, before explaining that the higher price is because the Contributor Edition offers the “opportunity to use the included Crush2D tools to make and contribute to the official game during the Early Access period (and be in the game credits for it).” That doesn’t make sense to me, though I can see the benefit in scaring off anyone who’d hope for a polished experience.
The game is currently $40/£30. Here’s the shouty trailer compelling you to buy the game:
And here’s the talky-developer trailer telling you not to buy the game, unless you want to make stuff for the game: