After years in early access releases and a fair amount of buzz, Astroneer is almost here. The finished version of System Era’s survival sandbox title arrives February 6th on Windows PCs and Xbox One, and it might be intriguing even if you’ve burnt out on the genre. The central allure remains the ability to reshape its procedurally generated planets with your mining tool. You can dig tunnels (as deep as your oxygen supply will allow), carve pathways and otherwise remake the world to harvest resources and lay out your base.
The finished Astroneer includes expected features like cross-platform multiplayer (including persistent servers that let friends build bases asynchronously) as well as a few additions that should spice things up. There’s a narrative mode for people who want some direction, six new themed planets, more gadgetry “recipes” and cosmetic customizations. Some of these are virtually par for the course for survival games, but they’re still welcome — they help flesh out a game that already reeled some people in based on its uncommon mechanics.