Starlink: Battle For Atlas is now available for Nintendo Switch, Xbox One and PlayStation 4. A toys-for-life game that syncs up digital action with physical toys, it lets you pilot a space ship through a massive solar system, exploring several varied planets teeming with aliens. It’s like a family friendly version of No Man’s Sky spliced with the toyetic DNA of Skylanders and Disney Infinity.
While playing, you can change out parts of your ship by swapping pieces in and out, and seeing your combinations reflected in-game. If that sounds like an exciting prospect, then you’ll probably want to know more about the different toys you can buy for this game. That being said, Starlink: Battle for Atlas can be played without the physical toys, but that’s no fun.
All that being said, you may have a few questions about how it all works and what you'll need. Here’s our buyer’s guide to Starlink: Battle for Atlas.
Starter Your Engines
A Starter Pack is necessary for anyone who wants to play Starlink: Battle for Atlas with the physical figures and ships. Whether you pick it up for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One or the Switch, each one comes with a ship, a controller mount, one or two pilots, two or three weapons and a poster. With the starter kit you get to enjoy the game at its most basic level.
So while you’ll be able to finish the entire story campaign, you’ll miss out on some optional content such as puzzles and chests that require specific weapon elements to complete. You’ll also miss out on the joy of physical customization, that is to say, stacking together three wings on either side of a ship to create some kind of Frankenship.
The Starter Pack for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One come with character pilot Mason Rana, the starship Zenith and three weapons – Flamethrower, Frost Barrage and Shredder. The Starter Packs for Switch include Fox McCloud of Star Fox fame as an exclusive guest pilot. The vulpine veteran of space combat is no mere cameo though, he participates in the main campaign and even has a mission that pits the members of Star Fox against their nemesis Wolf.
Mason Rana, the Frost Barrage and Flamethrower are still included in the Switch Starter Pack, but Zenith is replaced by Fox’s iconic Arwing and Fox displaces the Shredder weapon. Both the Shredder and the Zenith are included as digital items in the Switch bundle, but if you’re a completionist who wants all the toys, you’re SOL as they are only available in the starter kits for other platforms.
Starlink: Battle for Atlas is also available from digital stores. You won’t get any toys, naturally, but they’re still fully playable, with swapping of pilots and parts accessible from an in-game menu. Standard editions are well, standard, while deluxe editions come with digital versions of all of the ships, pilots and weapons.
Assemble The Fleet
At $25, Starship Packs come with a ship, a pilot and a weapon. Each pack is not console-specific, meaning they’ll work with any version of the starter kit you’ve got. Collecting all six of them, including exclusives from GameStop and Target, will set you back around $150. They are:
Lance ship with Hunter Hakka pilot and Imploder weapon
Neptune ship with Judge pilot and Levitator weapon
Nadir ship with Shaid pilot and Nullifier weapon
Pulse ship with Calisto De Silva pilot and Volcano weapon
Cerberus ship with Razor Lemay pilot and Shockwave weapon (GameStop exclusive)
Scramble ship with Levi McCray pilot and Fury Canon weapon (Target exclusive)
Weapon Packs retail for $10 and come with a pair of devices to reign destruction on your foes or solve puzzles with and can be snapped onto your ships' wings any time while playing the game. The four Weapon Packs are:
Crusher and Shredder Mk. 2
Hailstorm and Meteor Mk. 2
Iron Fist and Freeze Ray Mk. 2
Shockwave Weapon and Gauss Gun Mk. 2
Pilot Packs cost $8 each and contain one pilot. Every pilot has a unique ability in the game. There're four of them out there, though two of them -- Razor Lemay and Levi McCray -- come in retailer exclusive Starship Packs. The pack pilots are:
Co-op Packs simply package controller mounts you can clip onto second controller to play with another person locally. That means if you have a friend interested in playing Starlink: Battle for Atlas with you but intend to share your figure collection with them, you can buy this.
In Space, No One Can Hear Your Credit Card Scream
So, how much would it cost to acquire a full set of Starlink: Battle for Atlas toys? Between the $75 Starter Pack, $150 worth of Starship Packs, $40 worth of additional weapons and $16 for the two pilots not covered by other packs, that’s $281, give or take based on taxes and the exchange rate or regional pricing of your local retailer. Add a co-op pack for a friend and you’re looking at $301.
Of course, there’s no real reason to spend that much. If you’re just curious, begin with a Starter Pack and see how it feels to play with a plastic toy attached to your controller. I think it’s fun to see a physical representation of your on-screen avatar, but your mileage may vary. Otherwise, the rest of the ships, pilots and weapons are available as paid digital content.
Besides, you don’t need to get all the toys, just the ones you like. Regardless of how you choose to enjoy Starlink: Battle for Atlas, there’s nothing wrong with playing now and spending for more later.