Starseed Pilgrim appeared like a meager apparition on the Steam store, just looking for a friend to keep it company. The minimalistic banner and tiny price drew me in, like always.
Stupid Steam — and stupid me for expecting to disregard Starseed Pilgrim like so many other purchases I’ve made on on Valve’s platform. I buy, I have a 20% chance of enjoying what I buy for a couple of hours, and I then I just go back to whatever I legitimately like playing.
I don’t know where this game falls into the above cycle.
A Confusing Journey
The Starseed Pilgrim Steam store page is cryptic, simply reading:
Starseed Pilgrim is a game about tending a symphonic garden, exploring space, and embracing fate.
You are a gardener, tending to empty noise and empty space to fill them both with colour.
You are a refugee, building your own world away from the spreading darkness.
You are an explorer, discovering new places, new rules, and new fascinations.
The Universe Is Bigger Than You Know.
I didn’t think much of it at the time. It sounded like a colorful, perhaps musical farming simulator and I was all for that. “Yes,” I screamed, “Take my $6 and let me farm music and colors!”
Let’s be clear: This game is not a colorful, perhaps musical farming simulator. If I’d watched the preview video, I’d have known that — but impulse purchases aren’t called impulse purchases for nothing.
You see, I’m not really sure what Starseed Pilgrim is. After playing the game for 8 hours, I’m still not really sure what it is. I’m not sure why I keep playing it either, but I do. I do and for some reason I’m enjoying it, and I want to continue to do so.
What’s bizarre about the above, is that I’m not all that sure what I’m doing in game either. Things are coming together, I’m slowly figuring things out and making progress. The problem is that I don’t know what I’m progressing toward. I’m slowly grasping how things work, how to get where I want to go, but I’m still not sure what I’m doing. I don’t know why I’m doing it and I don’t know why I’m having fun with it.
It’s an enigma.
I’d initially bought the game on impulse, and ten minutes in I decided to look at reviews to see if they could maybe give me a little advice on what was going on. They didn’t, of course: This isn’t the kind of game you spoil for someone.
Funnily enough, the fact that everywhere that has reviewed it has basically said the same thing means you can draw the conclusion that they’ve not gotten very far. No information means they’ve not progressed, correct? You can generally tell when a reviewer hasn’t really delved into whatever they’re reviewing, but sometimes there are exceptions. Starseed Pilgrim, honestly, is one of those rare exceptions.
Nope. Not Spilling The Beans.
I can’t tell you what it’s about. I can’t tell you what you do, just watch the trailer on the Steam page. If you are the type who doesn’t like artsy indie games, you probably shouldn’t bother, but..
If you are the type of gamer who likes to figure things out on your own, to learn the nooks and crannies of a game, and explore using the information you’ve gathered so far — Starseed Pilgrim is for you.
I’m usually not the type who likes artsy indie titles, but I am the type who enjoys exploration and not being spoonfed. I enjoy figuring things out myself, getting those fantastic “A-ha!” moments and feeling like the only thing really holding me back is my own inability to complete the task at hand. I love going from unable to able to complete puzzling tasks in games.
Starseed Pilgrim is for me.