Developer Keen Software House announced that its building-focused sandbox game Space Engineers will be leaving Steam Early Access next week, February 28.
It has been a long road for space engineers; the game, which originally launched on Steam in 2013, has been in Early Access for almost five and a half years by the time its official version 1.0 releases next week.
This long gestation period is not too surprising, however, given that Space Engineers is an incredibly ambitious game. Described as a “sandbox game about engineering, construction, exploration and survival in space and on planets”, it gives players the ability to build everything from planetary outposts to space stations. and spaceships, piloting them into the depths of space to explore further and hopefully survive.
It can be played solo, co-op, or competitively, and there’s a Creative Mode for those who prefer tinkering without the all-pervading stress of Survival Mode (and enemy NPCs).
The list of features of Space Engineers is long. Its systems include volumetric physics, as well as electricity, oxygen, gravity (both natural and man-made), even deformable environments – all designed for a richer, more authentic experience. And on the tool front, you’ll find refineries and component assemblers, solar panels, various pre-made building blocks, pistons, thrusters, weapons, automated freighters, mod rack, and more.
Everything has been going well during Space Engineers’ long period of early access, with the game, which has amassed over 3 million PC sales, and still has 200,000 monthly active players according to Keen Software. An Xbox One version, first announced in 2014, is also in the works, and the developer says completing it is a “top priority for our team.”
When space engineers launch on February 28, he will understand the complete overhaul of survival mode which has been in production for some time. However, Keen says that even after full release, he “won’t stop working on Space Engineers.” It plans to add new features, blocks and scenarios in future updates, and promises to “take space engineers to places that are exciting for gameplay, immersion and challenges.”
“This is not the end,” he said of next week’s launch, “This is only the beginning!”.