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The best space sandbox game plans an expansion and more for 2024

Astroneer developer SES is lining up a big 2024, with four content updates including a full expansion coming in its Year of the Glitch.

An Astroneer expansion is coming in 2024 - A person in a space suit with a small, green alien creature next to them.

News of an Astroneer expansion coming in 2024 might be the perfect holiday gift I wasn’t expecting to get. Developer System Era Softworks has a huge year planned for my favorite space sandbox game, which it’s dubbing the Year of the Glitch. With four content updates planned, culminating in a “full expansion” towards the end of the year, it’s going to be a big year for the base-building game. Blending the exploration and crafting of Terraria and Factorio with the space adventures of No Man’s Sky and Starfield, it’s an exciting time to be an Astroneer lover.

Astroneer is now in its fifth year of development since its full release (and we’re at seven years since its original launch in early access), and the base-building sandbox space game continues to go from strength to strength. It was “cracked open” even further in 2023 by the Astroneer custom games update, giving you more control than ever before over how you want to play, and things are only going up from here.

“We think it’s time to shake things up a bit,” SES says in its 2024 roadmap blog. “You might have noticed that this year has a name,” it continues, referring to the ‘Year of the Glitch,’ and explains that “Astroneers can look forward to four content updates (including a full expansion) as well as light refreshes for all current limited-time events.”

Astroneer roadmap for 'Year of the Glitch' in 2024, with four major updates culminating in an expansion in fall/winter.

“Every update in the Year of the Glitch will contain new content and lore building towards a mystery expansion planned for the end of 2024,” it explains. “We’d like to keep things under wraps for now, but one thing should be clear: the spring and summer updates are ‘smaller,’ as we’ll be focused on a much larger update for the end of the year.” While there aren’t any details revealed yet, the team says, “It’s going to be a big jump forward for Astroneer.”

In addition to this, SES says it wants to give its limited-time events a bit of love. “This year we plan on doing some balance passes, releasing new rewards, and in some cases making alterations to events. In fact,” it says, “we’re kicking off the year in January with a brand new one. Thanks again, and I hope you are all excited as we are to continue exploring the world of Astroneer.” I absolutely am – and if you are too, Astroneer is currently 60% off on Steam through Thursday January 4, 2024.

Alternatively, we’ve rounded up the best sandbox games on PC to help you stretch your creative muscles, along with the best co-op games if you and your friends are after something new to play together over the holidays.

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