January 30, 2017

Andreas Betsche

Stellar Stars – Why this multiplayer rogue-lite from Singapore deserves more attention

January 30, 2017 | Andreas Betsche

Stellar Stars has a lot of good things to offer. The typical thrill of rogue-like games where death is final. Fast paced jumping and fighting in a 2d sci-fi fantasy world. A catchy soundtrack. Cute characters in pixel graphics with unique skills and magical abilities. Various enemies and boss fights that require good tactics and sharp reflexes. Procedurally designed stages of increasing difficulty. Leaderboards and ranked seasons. A single player campaign. And the joy and fun to team up with three other players and go an a hunt for stars.

Stellar Stars
Team up with some friends and go hunting stars!

The multiplayer mode – although it is very fun – is the game’s biggest problem. Being the core element of the game there simply aren’t enough players online. Unless you find a friend for local play (yes, that still exists!) or private matches, you’ll mostly be staring at a never-ending search screen. Yes, there is a single player mode, but it mainly serves as a training mode. Although very small in size, Stellar Star’s community is very active and operates a Discord server to chat and find team mates.

Stellar Stars Loading
You’ll be seeing this screen a lot.

Everything in this little indie gem is very well executed and developer Whitesponge is continuously updating and improving the game. They even provide free content with new characters. Once you team up with friends you get to play a light-hearted version of Binding of Isaac. Too bad the game hasn’t received the attention it deserves. I hope this review can change that and convince some of you to join the party. Stellar Stars is  available for Windows on Steam. I strongly recommend to use a controller.

Still not convinced? Check out some gameplay in this trailer:

Andreas Betsche

Andreas Betsche founded Virtual SEA in early 2016 after researching Cambodian mobile games for his Master’s thesis. He has a background in Southeast Asia studies and has worked and lived in Cambodia, Malaysia, and Indonesia. Since he has been actively playing games since the early 90s, combing both worlds in Virtual SEA brought together both of his passions.

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