Sandbox games have the potential to keep you entertained for extended periods of time, due to the fact that you are free to do as you like, and there are usually very few restrictions gameplay-wise. Hence, titles like Minecraft and Dwarf Fortress are insanely popular, mostly because everyone can have a unique experience while playing them and things rarely get repetitive.
Design spaceships and explore an entire galaxy
StarMade is basically Minecraft in space, so it should theoretically attract a rather big crowd, as long as the gameplay is just as smooth and permissive. The main idea is that you are free to roam through space from planet to planet, instead of being stuck on a single, albeit large map. Thanks to the voxel-based world, the entire thing is procedurally generated as well, so no two maps are ever the same.
To begin with, you must get acquainted with the general lack of gravity, since you are no longer stuck with walking when you are not on the surface of a planet. On the other hand, galactic distances are a pain to travel at free-float pace, so you need other means to get from point A to point B. The most obvious solution is a spaceship, because it would go pretty well with the rest of the environment.
Plenty of components to customize your ship
As such, you are free to build and design your own spaceship from scratch, much like you can do with the houses in Minecraft. However, instead of tables and a fireplace, you can now toy with engines and thrusters, although even these come in block form. The greatest advantage is that there are no size limits in space, unless you value your spare time.
As previously mentioned, mostly everything is procedurally generated, including the planets, various asteroids, and the map itself. You can go anywhere and mine the planets for materials, engage in laser duels with other spaceships, and generally have a good time while you’re at it. The graphics look nice enough not to be annoying, but you still have to bear the sight of cube-shaped dirt and rocks.
A huge world waiting to be explored
When it’s all said and done, StarMade has everything a sci-fi fan could want, plus all the freedom you can get. The game still needs a bit of polishing in some areas, since there are some frame drops every now and again, but the potential is there and you can certainly enjoy yourself a lot.