Out of Space Review

Developed and Published by Behold Studios, Out of Space is a strategy game where you need to move into a new home – but in outer space. From the team that brought you Knights of Pen and Paper, Out of Space feels like The Sims merged with Overcooked. With bright colours and cute graphics, you have to put your planning skills to work if you’re going to move into your new house whilst dealing with these issues that can only happen in space.

There is no story here, only an objective; you and up to 3 others locally have to move into your new house in space. That means you need to unpack, clean the house, sort out the power supply, maintain your hunger and keep yourself well-rested. What has that got to do with space? Well, let’s just say more often than not you have to evict some slimy alien critters from your new home. But these critters multiply fast and they like to leave their slime all over the place.

The goal is to power each of the rooms by placing batteries in the power sockets. They are usually one per room and the game gives you your first battery. But this is just one of the many plates you have to keep spinning. To obtain other batteries you need to purchase them. You get money by recycling rubbish and disposing of aliens. Rubbish appears in small garbage bags as you sweep up the alien slime. You will also notice that some of the doors have been slimed and the only way to clean them is with a bucket of water. You get provided with a bucket and an outside tap to fill it with. Once cleaned you then open the new room by pulling the lever to the door.

Usually, each room has an alien (or multiple) as well as a lot of slime on the floor. You need to clean the room, set up the furniture, buy and place a battery into the socket and setup any appliances. Seems easy enough, but whilst you are doing this you have to keep on top of your tiredness and hunger. Sometimes the game will start you off with a way to obtain food. Usually a plant you need to water which provides a fruit to eat to stave off the hunger. But you need to keep it watered to make sure it keeps bearing fruit – so another plate to spin. Then the meanest of it all is the need to sleep, and from the multiple sessions I played you do not start in a room with something you can sleep on. You need to move quickly and find a room with a bed or a couch as a priority as if you don’t get to sleep in time your character will pass out. They take a long time to recover this way and in that time aliens have multiplied and slimed up the place. They can even remove the batteries in some rooms which you will need buckets of water to fix. If you do sort out a bed you can sleep and recover very quickly in comparison.

So I mostly played this solo which really gave me that Sims feel, maintaining food and sleep whilst trying to achieve a particular goal. But it’s only when you realise you need to keep on top of everything do you get that real Overcooked feeling of constant pressure. Stepping on the slime hurts you as does coming in contact with the aliens. If you get hurt too much its game over. So sweeping up slime and using the mop to stun the aliens is usually the toughest plate to keep spinning as it’s never-ending.

Even after you sweep up the slime, stun the aliens and put them in the recycler, and use buckets of water to kill the alien eggs, after some time they will come back. You can try and gain an advantage with the money you gain from recycling garbage and aliens by buying other items. You can buy a sink to go in a certain room so you don’t have to keep backtracking to fill up your bucket. You can buy food so you can get a quick fix when you forgot to water the plant for food. Or you can buy another bucket and recycler to try and speed a few processes up.

               Playing it solo is tough as you have to be on top of all the jobs and if you’re standing still for a second then you’re letting the aliens win. But playing with others gives you a bit more balance as you can discuss tactics with each other on who should be doing what. The game as of yet doesn’t have online play and so it’s local only up to 4 people. You can choose from 5 different animal heads for your character and the difficulty comes in the form choosing the size of the ship, with the larger being harder.

Conclusion

Out of Space is a fun game to play and on your own, it’s about careful planning and high pressure. Playing with others it is about great communication and cooperation whilst still maintaining that high focus. I worry that the singular objective will harm the replay value of the game. As a party game once you have conquered the biggest ship I am not sure it would be something to play repeatedly. But then that is easier said than done I’m sure.

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This game was tested and reviewed on Xbox. All of the opinions and insights here are subject to that version. Game provided by the publisher.
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Good
  • Cute fun graphics
  • Intense strategic gameplay
  • Interesting party game
Bad
  • The tutorial seems to miss out a few key things
  • Opening doors makes you drop your item
  • Needed more variety in objectives.
6.5
Okay
Gameplay - 7
Graphics - 7
Audio - 6.5
Longevity - 5.5
Written by
Gaming, or, games in general, are in my blood. Just shy of an addiction but still an obsession. From opening my mind on the Commodore 64 I have kept up with the generations of gaming, currently residing on the Xbox One. Gamertag: Grahamreaper

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