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Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

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coopasonic
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Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by coopasonic » Fri Jan 04, 2019 3:29 pm

Apparently I'm going to be the guy posting about games nobody else is playing. My son has been begging me for this for a long time. He sees it more like a 3D Factorio, but it isn't really anything like Dactorio in my eyes. It's much more like Minecraft with better graphics (Subnautica type aesthetic, but space-themed) and a sort of survival thing, though it doesn't really get into survival. You aren't hitting rocks with trees to get started which again is more like subnautica. You have technology and limited resources and need to ladder into access to more and more resources and technology until??? well I don't know. It has multiplayer support, supporting up to 4 I think. I have only played with two.

The game is still in Early Access but has a release date set for next month. The downside is that a week or so before the release a new patch will invalidate all alpha saves so anything you do before that will be lost. I am cool with that as we are just messing around learning the game.

The tutorial in the current version is total crap. Now that I have a clue I need to restart the tutorial and see if I can complete it. The game is still a bit buggy with clipping issues being the main problem in the few hours we have played.

We are close to interplanetary travel and we will be doing that next as we need resources now that aren't on the first planet, but I feel like we could still putz around the first planet for a LONG time exploring and finding research items. It's actually kind of similar to No Man's Sky in the planetary exploration. There is no wildlife that I have seen so far, but there is aggressive flora. We've been murdered by multiple plants although we know what to look out for now, at least on our home planet.

There is solar, wind and bio-power. Bio requires pretty constant harvesting of plants. Solar and wind have the obvious limitations, though nights are pretty short. We have a buggy and a couple rovers to wander the planet (which is small enough that you could probably circumnavigate it in 20 minutes (just a guess but the visible curvature is significant from the ground).

Steam says a bunch of you have it, but nobody is talking about it. One of my friends recommended against it on steam, I think by the avatar it might be Lorini. I'm curious to hear her thoughts on it.
-Coop

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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by Paingod » Fri Jan 04, 2019 3:34 pm

A link for the lazy.

I looked this one over a while back, but couldn't get fired up about it. The palette is very No Man's Sky, which doesn't click with me. Already having No Man's Sky and a few other games like Empyrion to poke at with a stick didn't help.
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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by Blackhawk » Fri Jan 04, 2019 3:47 pm

The big thing that makes an exploration game like that work for me is a first person view. I want to feel like I am exploring, not watching a tiny figure exploring.
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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by jztemple2 » Fri Jan 04, 2019 4:48 pm

Astroneer is high on my desired games list, but I'm getting it only after it leaves Early Access.
"A plan is a list of things that go wrong. I like to keep my lists short. Just be ready." - Rico Rodriguez

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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by Tao » Fri Jan 04, 2019 6:19 pm

jztemple2 wrote:
Fri Jan 04, 2019 4:48 pm
Astroneer is high on my desired games list, but I'm getting it only after it leaves Early Access.
+1

I have been watching this for quite some time now and am excited they are getting ready to move to live, I just wasn't willing to bite while it was EA.
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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by Lorini » Fri Jan 04, 2019 9:54 pm

Yeah I could have recommended against it because as you found out the tutorial is terrible. I couldn't finish it. Astroneer is a game I'd like to like but can't.
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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by Apollo » Fri Jan 04, 2019 11:38 pm

Blackhawk wrote:
Fri Jan 04, 2019 3:47 pm
The big thing that makes an exploration game like that work for me is a first person view. I want to feel like I am exploring, not watching a tiny figure exploring.
I completely agree. Besides, I already have games, like the previously mentioned Empyrion, to scratch this game's particular itch.

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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by coopasonic » Sat Jan 05, 2019 6:46 pm

OK, that was... brief. I've played for about 16 hours and there isn't really anything interesting left to do. I was hoping for some actual base building or tech tree progression, but there is really very little to the progression. You can unlock pretty much everything in a weekend and once you have everything unlocked there isn't much you can do with it. Travel between planets and build the same stuff on those other planets. Note: there are only a handful of planets and the resources available on each is fixed so you open the spreadsheet, find where iron is, fly there and gather iron then fly back. It isn't *really* that simple as with the basic small shuttle you can only carry what you can have on your person which is only 14 small things so you have to plan what you take very carefully. Early on you are using solid fuel thrusters so you aren't traveling willy nilly, you need to find some rarer resources to build those.

Anyway, I'll see what they do coming out of early access, but based on what is in the alpha it just isn't enough.
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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by jztemple2 » Sat Jan 05, 2019 7:55 pm

coopasonic wrote:
Sat Jan 05, 2019 6:46 pm
OK, that was... brief. I've played for about 16 hours and there isn't really anything interesting left to do. I was hoping for some actual base building or tech tree progression, but there is really very little to the progression. You can unlock pretty much everything in a weekend and once you have everything unlocked there isn't much you can do with it. Travel between planets and build the same stuff on those other planets. Note: there are only a handful of planets and the resources available on each is fixed so you open the spreadsheet, find where iron is, fly there and gather iron then fly back. It isn't *really* that simple as with the basic small shuttle you can only carry what you can have on your person which is only 14 small things so you have to plan what you take very carefully. Early on you are using solid fuel thrusters so you aren't traveling willy nilly, you need to find some rarer resources to build those.

Anyway, I'll see what they do coming out of early access, but based on what is in the alpha it just isn't enough.
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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by coopasonic » Sun Jan 06, 2019 8:29 am

I checked out a "base building" video to see what people were doing there as apparently that is a thing. It's all terraforming for underground bases. The terraforming tools are apparently pretty robust. If you are into that sort of thing, that might help. I am not.
-Coop

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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by Papa Smurph » Sat Jan 19, 2019 5:31 am

I too was underwhelmed by the amount of content. It's a cute game, and fun while it lasted, but it didn't last long enough at all. They are hinting at a whole new set of worlds and a story in the 1.0 release, which is supposedly in a couple of weeks now. If that happens, I'll be pretty excited, but it seems ambitious for a team that has struggled to get small amounts of content into the game. Supposedly these are industry veterans, so I'm hoping for the best.

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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by coopasonic » Wed Feb 06, 2019 10:25 pm

Lorini wrote:
Fri Jan 04, 2019 9:54 pm
Yeah I could have recommended against it because as you found out the tutorial is terrible. I couldn't finish it. Astroneer is a game I'd like to like but can't.
For the record, it has exited early access as of today and the tutorial has been significantly improved. I've played for just a little bit and it's pretty much the same so far, but I've seen a couple of new things already that show promise for the future.
-Coop

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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by jztemple2 » Thu Feb 07, 2019 1:11 am

I was over on the Steam store site and checked out the bugs forum. Lots of posts from people who are having problems with the 1.0 release, problems they say were not there before. I'll hold off and wait for the dust to clear :coffee:
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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by Lorini » Fri Feb 08, 2019 10:41 pm

The tutorial still makes no sense. I have no clue how to build the ramp. I click on it and nothing.
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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by coopasonic » Sat Feb 09, 2019 7:53 am

Lorini wrote:
Fri Feb 08, 2019 10:41 pm
The tutorial still makes no sense. I have no clue how to build the ramp. I click on it and nothing.
When you hold control with the excavation tool out, whatever plane you are targeting when you click the mouse button is what you will create when moving the mouse, so you need to find or create an upward angle and then use the tool to extend it to where you want to go. *That* took me a while to really figure out, but it is key to navigating underground, much more than anything on the surface. I know my description may not make much sense, but once it clicks, you will be good.

You can also just alt-click the ground directly under your feet to go up, but that doesn't leave a reusable ramp, just a column of dirt.
-Coop

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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by Lorini » Sat Feb 09, 2019 9:28 am

Thanks Coop I will try that out when my frustration levels out :).
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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by Papa Smurph » Sun Feb 10, 2019 9:28 am

coopasonic wrote:
Sat Feb 09, 2019 7:53 am
Lorini wrote:
Fri Feb 08, 2019 10:41 pm
The tutorial still makes no sense. I have no clue how to build the ramp. I click on it and nothing.
When you hold control with the excavation tool out, whatever plane you are targeting when you click the mouse button is what you will create when moving the mouse, so you need to find or create an upward angle and then use the tool to extend it to where you want to go. *That* took me a while to really figure out, but it is key to navigating underground, much more than anything on the surface. I know my description may not make much sense, but once it clicks, you will be good.

You can also just alt-click the ground directly under your feet to go up, but that doesn't leave a reusable ramp, just a column of dirt.
That is a pretty good explanation, but it's a hard concept so I'll take a crack at it too and see if it helps.

Your excavation tool has three modes: dig down, build up, and smooth out. Dig down is the default mode and easy to understand. It just works. The other too modes require a canister that contains soil that has been dug out (I think, I haven't tried without a canister in a while).

One you have that, shift (by default) will build up soil, piling it higher and higher. Generally, don't do this for long, but it can be useful for creating a slope. Why do you want a slope? Next section...

The super important but difficult to use mode is smooth out. Ctrl (by default) turns on this mode. Whatever slope your "cursor" is showing when you press the mouse button is what everything else is smoothed to as you move the mouse with the button held down. So, if the ground is sloped down, it will build a ramp down. If the ground is sloped up, it will build a ramp up. It can also be useful if the ground is level for covering over holes.

Hopefully this helps it make sense.

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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by Lorini » Sun Feb 10, 2019 1:29 pm

There was a piece that seemed like a ramp that I was trying to pick up. What was that doing there?
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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by coopasonic » Mon Feb 11, 2019 10:53 am

Lorini wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 1:29 pm
There was a piece that seemed like a ramp that I was trying to pick up. What was that doing there?
I don't know what you are referring to offhand here, but there aren't any structural pieces beyond the platforms that are very distinctive. There is salvage/detritus that can be ignored for most of the game. Later on you can drop them into a shredder to exchange for materials, but this mid-late game. Otherwise, you just check them for non-salvage pieces that can you can steal. Usually small to medium solar panels and wind turbines and single use battery things.

I have been on the starter planet, 2 moons and one other planet. At this point it is basically down to the grind to see what the new end game is. I say grind, but I still enjoy it. New mechanics give you a reason to explore more than a small part of the surface and delve to the core of each planet/moon. I haven't yet built a base on another planet, but I am considering it. I have to find the right place first.

It is definitely more engaging than it was in early access, but it's not really significantly different. I've really only seen one bug. I am randomly bounced into the sky about once every hour or two and about half the time fall to my death as a result. One time the camera failed to follow me when I exited my ship, which was... weird. I was able to get back into the ship and leave again and it was back to normal.
-Coop

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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by Papa Smurph » Thu Feb 14, 2019 12:05 am

Hey Coop, I've seen you in game several times now. Are you interested in any multiplayer? I'm usually playing with my wife, but if I'm on alone I'm game to join up with you. Although it sounds like you are much further along than we are, so it might be a bit spoilery for me...

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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by coopasonic » Thu Feb 14, 2019 10:44 am

I think I am pretty close to being done with the game, at least for now anyway. I have one planet left to visit and a few achievements (ie the rest) I want to knock out, but Far Cry New Dawn comes out tomorrow and I will be switching to that for a while.

Honestly I am not sure what multiplayer has to offer at this point. Early on having two people to gather resources and explore can be useful, but late game I'm pretty much just on a mission to see what happens when you do the thing that wasn't in early access. I guess I am still doing the same resource gathering and build up on every planet so I can generate the necessary power so help is good there, but I only have one planet left to do that and it's the Very Hard one.

I am not much into Astroneer's form of base building and since they removed the wind storms, there's hardly any reason to build any kind of underground bunker anyway, so there's not much interesting to see in my world except end game tech piled up around my initial landing pad on the first planet.

In summary, you are welcome to join, but I am not sure why you'd want to.
-Coop

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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by Lordnine » Thu Feb 14, 2019 12:34 pm

Is there any sort of driving force in the game? Like an actual story or ending? One thing I really loved about Subnautica was how thought out the world actually way. Building games without that need to be really deep for me to commit time to them.

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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by coopasonic » Thu Feb 14, 2019 3:10 pm

Lordnine wrote:
Thu Feb 14, 2019 12:34 pm
Is there any sort of driving force in the game? Like an actual story or ending? One thing I really loved about Subnautica was how thought out the world actually way. Building games without that need to be really deep for me to commit time to them.
There is really no story to the game at all. As you explore the first planet you find an alien structure and you need to figure out what to do with that. Once you solve that, it opens up another mystery and that drives you to another mystery and that sends you on an "adventure" that is probably 30+ hours of gameplay to resolve if you focus on it. I am close to the end of that now and am very curious to see what comes of it. I don't know if it goes beyond that. However there is no narrative to the game in any form at all. The only text in the game is text that is absolutely necessary to the game, the names of resources, descriptions of what resources are on what planets and the names of blueprints.

So it goes the bare minimum beyond sandbox, but just the minimum. I got bored of the game in early access pretty quickly when the mysteries were not present, so the mysteries have made the game worth playing for me. I played for 16 hours in early access and now have 33 hours in the 1.0 version with probably 4-5 hours left unless something else opens up. Again this is without doing any sandbox-y stuff, pretty much driving for resolution with minimal extraneous activity.

edit to add: I loved Subnautica and can't wait for Sub-zero which appears to add more to the narrative on top of Subnautica. Some of that discovery from Subnautica would be welcome here, on the other hand in this game you don't have as much of the same problems of locating specific things ot progress the game. The things are resources and they are generally easy to find. There are lots of wrecks similar to Subnautica but they are generally much less useful or revelatory.
-Coop

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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by Lordnine » Thu Feb 14, 2019 4:43 pm

Thanks for the write-up. That sounds like something I could enjoy playing in co-op but probably wouldn't get much out of playing single player.

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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by Lorini » Wed Feb 20, 2019 1:46 pm

This time I got as far as trying do something with the aluminum and the printer. Totally confused about what goes where.
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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by coopasonic » Wed Feb 20, 2019 2:27 pm

Lorini wrote:
Wed Feb 20, 2019 1:46 pm
This time I got as far as trying do something with the aluminum and the printer. Totally confused about what goes where.
Everything goes wherever you want. The game is actually surprisingly simple. Everything needs power, you need oxygen, the rest is whatever the heck you want to do. There is a bit of a resource ladder but it is pretty simple and most of it is documented in game (Astropedia or whatever - I think it is the rocket ship icon in the escape menu). It can be a bit confusing with 4 different printers that each have different items they print but for the most part it goes by the size of the item produced... then there are different sized platforms with various tools requiring different minimum sizes. Some things don't require platforms at all.
-Coop

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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by Lorini » Wed Feb 20, 2019 4:38 pm

Do you play with a controller or keyboard and mouse?
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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by coopasonic » Wed Feb 20, 2019 6:03 pm

Mouse and keyboard.
-Coop

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Re: Astroneer (Subnautica crossed with Minecraft)

Post by Lorini » Mon Feb 25, 2019 7:13 pm

Well I don't seem to be able to ramp up out of caves so my days may be over. I got everything else but I can't make a solar panel without aluminum and no aluminum without laterite.
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