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a game by Fractal Softworks
Platform: PC
Editor Rating: 7/10, based on 1 review
User Rating: 8.0/10 - 2 votes
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See also: RPGs, Simulator Games, Best Indie Games, Space Games, Games Like Battle Brothers

Space was made for sandbox games. There is unequivocally no question about that. So what do game developers do when such a compatible concept is laid out before them? They create Starsector, of course - a game dedicated to facilitating players into telling their very own space operas. Traverse the stars and become a hero in the universe or villain.

The stigma attached to most of these space exploration games is that they are either brilliant or terrible. There doesn't seem to have one released that is just average. So we enter the gameplay of Starsector with a polarized approach - either we'll come out feeling like the King of a planetary empire or derp rodent of a backwater moon. Which will it be?

Take Over the Final Frontier

Starsector purposely conveys a liberal approach to gameplay. Lacking a detailed narrative and presenting loose lore - players are encouraged to tell their own stories while plummeting into the cold depths of space. All we know is that we're more than 1000 years into the future, and 7 different factions are in an endless spat for control of this - well, star sector.

You're thrown into the game choosing what kind of story you'll be telling. There are a few customization options at the beginning. Being able to pick an avatar and name yourself - and choose your occupation. Suddenly, away you go with your little fleet of ships! There isn't much intuition to tell you what you should be doing, but the core focus of gameplay presents the idea nearly right away.

Starsector is a space combat game - almost bringing the survivalist factors. You'll be tasked with fending off enemies to keep your fleet alive and grow it against the intense hordes of foes vying for power. The fleet will travel around exploring colonies, fulfilling quests, and purchasing resources to repair and extend your armada.

It does feel a bit aimless, but the combat is pretty gripping. You'll take complete control of your ship to engage enemies without being stuck to a traditional RTS battle style. Players can dodge, fire, and maneuver to gain a competitive advantage and ultimately victory. But here is where we hit a snag. That aspect of gameplay is just about the only thing that holds Starsector together.

All Those Who Wander Might Be Lost

It's worthwhile to note that Starsector is not yet a completed game. It's been in early access for numerous years while the minuscule team of developers chips away at the ambitious project. Honestly, the foundations of Starsector are all there. The mechanics will serve as an immersive and intriguing space opera - it only needs to be fleshed out more.


Starsector is reminiscent of Mount & Blade: Warband - almost like a version of the game in space. It faces the task of refining its already diverse gameplay. There are excellent combat, shipbuilding, city management, and trade mechanics - and we have every faith it's going to get there. While it needs work at the moment, we'll put this game down in the good books of space exploration.


  • Excellent space combat
  • Liberal exploration and trade mechanics that can be built upon
  • The game puts the player first to tell their tale


  • The little direction in what to do at the start
  • General gameplay needs to be fleshed out more to immerse players
  • The game could do with an ultimate aim or reward for success

Download Starsector


System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

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