Chucklefish has put together a developer blog detailing what people can expect from Starbound update 1.0, the one that usher the game out of Early Access.
The main feature of the Starbound 1.0 update is a completed story arc. Previously, people have only been able to begin the game’s storyline, but not see it to completion. The full version of the game will offer more story missions, information about your character’s situation as a Terrene Protectorate’s Protector, and NPCs for people to aid. Players will find clues by undertaking missions and exploring planets. These help them find 8 instanced missions. Taking these quests on allows a player to fight major bosses and expand the Outpost.
For people who don’t want to be bound to Starbound’s story, Chucklefish has made an assurance that other game progress isn’t tied to it. The armor, colony, ship, and story progressions are all separate. There are also no artificial gates or gear requirements, allowing people to choose how each mission is completed.
Starbound 1.0 will have other important features added. Planets now can have multiple biomes, instead of focusing on one biome with some sub-biomes to experience. New dungeons, microdungeons, and villages have been added, with Hylotls finally getting their own areas. Side quests will be available, with a battle arena, generated NPC quests, museum, and tech test chamber mentioned.
Ships should feel homier after Starbound update 1.0. You can put together a crew, which can be made up of mercenaries hired from The Beakeasy or colonists who are so satisfied that they decide to join up. These crew members can become medics, mechanics, soldiers, and stylists. You can upgrade your ship after you have a certain number of crew members or have purchased licenses at Penguin Bay.
There will also be more things to make. More crafting tables, each with their own uses and recipes, are available. Each table also has tabs, to help you sort what you might need to make. One new table is a fossil station, which lets you play a minigame to get a fossil. Eating will become more important, as hunger has returned to Survival mode. Food can rot, so refrigerators will be necessary to preserve items. Pets are more advanced, with collars that will give them abilities. More weapons and equipment will be added. Back armors will be able to be augmented, to add skills.
Finally, Starbound will work better with Steam after the 1.0 update. Dedicated servers are planned, as well as the ability to drop in/out of a friend’s singeplayer game through Steam invites. Also, the game will receive Steam Workshop support for mods.
A release date for Starbound update 1.0 has not been announced. The game is immediately available via Early Access for Windows, Mac, and Linux PCs.