Satisfactory Early Access Impressions

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Published by Darkpsy 4 months ago , last updated 4 months ago

Coffee Stain Studios.  This is a name most commonly associated with such titles as Sanctum 1 & 2 and Goat Simulator.  Now, the independent developer is setting their sights a bit higher with Satisfactory.

Satisfactory is an open-world factory building game.  The player (called the Engineer) is tasked by FICSIT (pronounced Fix-it) to explore a previously unexplored world and send them resources, research and development samples, and build highly complex factories to automate the resource gathering process.  Seems simple, right?  Not so much!

Here's the game's trailer which better illustrates the concept behind Satisfactory:

I've been playing the game for hours.  Some days I just can't put it down!  I had obtained the game for the sole purpose of writing an article about the game, but once I started up the game, I was instantly hooked.  My factory isn't the best in the world, but I wouldn't consider it the worst!  Let's go into some of the features that stand out with Satisfactory.

Early Access

After a closed alpha period under NDA (Non-disclosure agreement), Coffee Stain Studios opened up the sales of the game on the Epic Games Store on March 19th, 2019.  Currently, Satisfactory can only be purchased using the Epic Games Launcher.  If you've played Unreal Tournament or Fortnite, chances are you know what the Launcher is.  If not, you can head to https://www.epicgames.com and click on the Get Epic Games button in the top-right corner of the screen.

The decision to launch in Early Access was an easy choice to make, according to the official website.  Coffee Stain Studios wants to involve the players in the development of the game as much as possible.  Through the use of an in-game feedback tool and various social media channels, Coffee Stain Studios can gather feedback from the playerbase which will in turn help them create an awesome game.

Early Access doesn't mean there's not enough to do.  In fact, I had forgotten the game was in early access!  Sure, there's the odd performance hiccup here and there, but that's to be expected.  The world of Satisfactory is huge!  The world is meticulously hand-crafted, which means a lot of love went into the creation of the strange alien worlds.  Included in the Early Access are:

  • 6 tiers of milestones that unlock machines, blueprints, resources, equipment, and vehicles
  • 3 starting areas on a large alien world that's over 30 square kilometers in size
  • Vehicles with automation capabilities
  • Equipment and weapons
  • Alien creatures
  • Multiplayer support (still a bit buggy, but definitely usable)

The Early Access also comes with an Experimental option which can be used to push out content much faster.  Experimental is sure to be quite buggy at times, so saving often is definitely key.

The Updates

The first of major updates, named Update #1, was release in mid-May 2019.  Update #1 included Quartz Research Chains, Sulfur Research Chains, and Conveyor Lifts.  The second major update, aptly named Update #2, was originally scheduled for May 2019, however it is now slated to be released sometime this June.  Update #2 will expand on Update #1 and add Tier 7 Milestones (Nuclear and Uranium), Trains, and will overhaul late game areas.

Further down the road, Coffee Stain Studios will continue to iterate the game and make changes/improvements.  It's currently planned to improve on the core gameplay experience, add the remainder of the FICSIT Milestones and Tech unlocks, more buildings, complete narrative, further optimization, and finally; add mod support!

The Future

Coffee Stain Studios has stated the game will be in Early Access for a least a year, possibly longer.  The studio is hoping to iterate on the game and make continual improvements for years to come.  In a game like this, it's hard to determine what constitutes "version 1.0". 

Get Involved

If you haven't purchased the game yet, what are you waiting for?  This game is awesome on so many levels.  Although I'm not an electrical/bio/mechanical engineer, I'm finding that playing the game definitely brings out my creativity and logic.  It isn't easy figuring out where to place your machines, and that's part of the fun!

Coffee Stain Studios is collecting feedback both in-game and on their various social media channels:

Head on over to the Epic Games Store and pick up a copy of Satisfactory.  You definitely will not regret it!

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