If you've been following Starbound's development for the past year, you've been waiting for a few big features before you let yourself progress to the "painfully addicted" stage. That time may be soon, as the impending winter update has a massive list of changes, overhauls, re-balances and extras that we've been eager to get our hands on.
One of the biggest new features in the Starbound update is a complete overhaul of the combat system. The smack-retreat-smack method in the game has been, at best, unsatisfying, and at worst, plain awful. The new system adds breakable shields, 360 degree melee attacks, parrying, an improved status system, and a completely new weapon class, staves. New enemy types are also jumping into the mix, like sharks!
Wait, sharks? On land? Not necessarily. New biomes are also coming in the update, one of which is underwater. To reach those new biomes you'll get a brand new fuel system and planet navigation computer. And to give you a reason to reach those new biomes, quests and missions are being added. And to get those quests and missions, you can find special Outpost planets that are basically like that one episode of Firefly where they were on a space station and Jayne got his famous hat.
A few other notable additions. The full list has a lot, lot more.
- Hundreds of new items
- Personal ship AI, S.A.I.L.
- Ship upgrades that let you add on new room modules
- Matter manipulator upgrades, including one that lets you drain water
- New tech system that lets you choose a combination of skills
- Stargates -- I mean, warp gates
- Huge cooking update with over 100 new recipes
- Scriptable UI windows
- Bug catching. Nab them and put them in jars
- New crafting recipes
- New costumes
The winter update is scheduled for a wide release sometime in January, though if you're super curious and at least half as impatient, you can opt-in to the nightlies and get your hands on them now.