Why Asteroids: Outpost failed to get my rocks off

Asteroids Outpost

As Tyler and I recently "argued", there are a lot of new survival games out there in Early Access. Most aren't great, and in their not-yet-finished states are often buggy affairs with a lot of missing parts. Still, there's usually some enjoyment to be found in even the earliest of Early Access survival games, be it a couple of enjoyable features, some interesting ideas, or perhaps just some entertaining activities, such as bashing yourself in the face with a rock you keep holstered in your own butt.

Asteroids: Outpost, another Early Access survival FPS, doesn't seem to have any of those bright spots lurking amongst its space rubble. After finding a server and picking a spot for a base, you're tasked with gathering ore, which comes from the constant barrage of very, very slowly falling meteorites. In fact, I'm not sure barrage is the right word. Do you typically have to wait for a barrage?

Your base has a turret, which auto-fires to keep these meteorites from destroying your new home, but a meteorite shot by an auto-turret does not produce ore. Nor is ore produced by a meteorite that is allowed to crash to the ground. Ore is only produced by you manually firing your turret. So, that's what you do. You sit in your turret and shoot dozens and dozens of meteorites as they slowly tumble from the sky.

Asteroids Outpost

Having shot rocks, I prepare to shoot rocks again. The same rocks.

You're not done shooting rocks! To gather the ore, you leave your base, run to the chunks of ore you've shot down, and shoot them again, this time with one of two mining guns. These guns run out of ammo quickly, and you run out of oxygen quickly, so you have to make several trips back to your base to recharge.

Once you've shot rocks and then shot them again, and then gone back and shot more rocks and then shot more rocks again, you can build new prefabricated modules for your station. You can also visit the Ore Exchange terminal in your base, which sounds like a place to sell the types of ore you don't need and buy the types of ore you do need. It's not, though: you can only sell ore, and use the resulting cash to upgrade your spacesuit or vehicle. So, if you need 550 iron ore, you're gonna have to shoot it all yourself, even if you have a ton of gold ore you don't need.

Asteroids Outpost

If I could show you something besides me shooting rocks I would, I swear.

What else is there to do? Well, I visited someone else's base. They weren't home, and even though their force field door did nothing to stop me from entering their base, I couldn't recharge my oxygen so I suffocated in there. I also died from being hit on the head by a meteorite. And, I spent a good long while trying to collect enough ore for a vehicle pad, so I could drive a car around.

Unfortunately, Asteroids: Outpost completely crashes when you alt-tab out, which I kept doing because I do that a lot, and I kept forgetting not to. Also, I was trying to repair my base with a repair tool and wound up deleting part of it, and when I tried to replace it, instead of walls it just had orange sparkles.

Asteroids Outpost

I don't think I can live inside sparkles.

Then I thought... you know what? If I have to shoot any more rocks and then shoot them again, I think I'm going to cry. Then I quit. Well, I tried to. I probably should have just alt-tabbed.

Asteroids Outpost

That's not soon enough.
Christopher Livingston
Senior Editor

Chris started playing PC games in the 1980s, started writing about them in the early 2000s, and (finally) started getting paid to write about them in the late 2000s. Following a few years as a regular freelancer, PC Gamer hired him in 2014, probably so he'd stop emailing them asking for more work. Chris has a love-hate relationship with survival games and an unhealthy fascination with the inner lives of NPCs. He's also a fan of offbeat simulation games, mods, and ignoring storylines in RPGs so he can make up his own.