Universe Sandbox 2: Best early access game in space

August is the month for early access space games and Universe Sandbox 2 is in the lead.

It looks like space is the place for an enjoyable alpha experience.

The early access of Universe Sandbox 2, released on Monday, is currently the best received early access game on Steam for August. Understandable, since the nonlinear gameplay can never be “ruined” by bugs or glitches. The fact that it’s a sequel to an already-successful indie series is just another feather in its cap.

The first Universe Sandbox, released in 2011, developed a strong following after over 15 years of development. The game received positive reviews in part because of its accurate physics simulations and educational applications—but mostly because it made players feel like gods.

The sequel includes improvements such as magnetic fields, pulsars, and space elevators. The developer, Giant Army, also boasts improved physics and a new soundtrack. Find out more about changes in the sequel on Giant Army's development blog.

Technically, Conflicks is the highest-rated early access game this month at 100% positive reviews. But at 20 total reviews, Steam’s algorithm places the epic chicken space battle RTS at "positive," just a notch below the highest-ranking “very positive.” Duskers, the post-apocalyptic space exploration game, is also well-received with 95% positive reviews out of 90 total reviews.

Universe Sandbox 2 faces steep competition from a collection of amazing space games just in this month alone. However, its occupation of a rarely-visited niche genre may maintain its popularity for years to come.

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Published Aug. 27th 2015

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