One of the greatest space games ever made is having a very brief Steam sale right now, and it is absolutely an essential pick-up if you’re waiting eagerly for the Starfield release date. Outer Wilds is a very difficult game to talk about without spoiling even just the core concept, so if you want to go in completely blind and have somehow missed the core conceit, we recommend it while the Outer Wilds sale is still on.
Outer Wilds relies very heavily on two brilliant systems: a 22-minute time loop and a handcrafted solar system. You’re tasked with uncovering why that solar system’s sun turns supernova, and need to take each run’s knowledge into the next to determine how, or if, you can stop it.
This concept isn’t what makes Outer Wilds so impressive though, it’s in the execution. You’ll wander around multiple planets that all follow the same 22-minute set path, but the mysteries they hold, and your ability to use your own sense of ingenuity to unlock them make it a truly impressive experience.
The fact Outer Wilds barely tells you anything, and instead gives you a web of puzzles, stories, and challenges to unfold in any order you please on multiple runs, makes for an adventure that feels distinctly yours despite the relatively small, handcrafted universe you’re placed in. One minute you’ll be reading alien glyphs, then on your next run you’ll charge straight to a specific planet to uncover a mystery before it’s lost in that time loop. In giving you real direction, Outer Wilds lets you go in any.
Relying on physics also makes it a whole lot of fun to get around the solar system too. You’ll encounter planets with different levels of gravity, black holes, and your spaceship feels like a GTA 4 vehicle in the best way possible.
It’s difficult for me to say too much about Outer Wilds without completely spoiling the encounters and secrets of the game, but it’s the definition of what makes videogames special as an interactive medium. After leaving Game Pass recently, now’s the time to grab it if you haven’t.
You can nab Outer Wilds until Monday, August 7 for a lovely 40% off, bringing it down to just $14.99 / £12.59, making the short, sweet, and incredibly inventive space adventure even more worthy of your time.
Still looking for more? While a good Starfield wiki can be a handy source of information, our new Starfield Database goes further, offering you daily news, searchable databanks, and even interactive tools.