What is Star Atlas and How to Play It?

what is star atlas and how to play it?
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The starbound blockchain game with plans for a fully decentralized community

Last updated 09/30/2022

Star Atlas is a game that people have been excited about for a long time now. It heralds the next generation of blockchain gaming that will see the industry move beyond simple GameFi mechanics to a high-spec and interactive virtual world. While we all wait for more information about when the full game will be playable, take a moment to find out what Star Atlas is and how to play it.


Star Atlas describes itself as ‘a grand strategy game of space exploration, territorial conquest, political domination, and living among the stars.’ It’s part of the new breed of blockchain platforms that blend gaming with the metaverse. They also plan to become an entire online community that is run by, and for, its own decentralized autonomous organization.

What is Star Atlas?

Star Atlas is a futuristic play-to-earn MMORPG built on the Solana blockchain. It’s based in the year 2620 and its developers created it using the Unreal Engine 5. The first of several PC gameplay modules is set for release in 2022.

It’s a fantasy game based in a metaverse-style virtual world. Spacefaring players can interact with each other, go on quests, claim territory and start their own societies. The team behind the game has given us this rough overview, but the community still awaits more detail.

Michael Wagner is the CEO of ATMTA Inc., the development studio behind Star Atlas. The four other co-founders are Danny Floyd, Jacob Floyd and Pablo Quiroga.

Very little gameplay footage has been released yet but at the recent 426Live event, the team dropped some alpha for fans.

A look at Star Atlas gameplay

Star Atlas is a Triple A game, meaning it approaches the level of quality we find with console games. Initially, players will need to purchase and hold an in-game NFT to get involved. Of course, they will then own these assets and can sell them whenever they want.

The Star Atlas team has informed us that they’re currently building ‘an open, freely accessible world’ for all users to enjoy, with zero costs attached.

How to play the game

You’ll need to head over to the Star Atlas website to start playing the game. Once you’re there, you need to connect to the game with your Solana wallet. To buy NFTs before you play, you’ll need USDC or the in-game currency ATLAS. You’ll also need SOL to pay your gas fees for transactions.

After choosing your faction, purchasing a ship, and buying all of the required resources such as fuel and food, you can begin playing.

The game revolves around conflict between Humans (MUD), Androids (Ustur) and Aliens (ONI). Securing domination for your faction, whether its control over planetary resources or political power, is one of the main aims of the game.

Mining and trading are other big features in the game. Extracting minerals and ores from the ground can be a lucrative career path in Star Atlas. But without secure trade routes, it’s difficult to sell your products. This is why belonging to a strong faction that controls space is important to success in the game.

Beyond these broad outlines, the Star Atlas team has released very little information on how the game will work on a granular level. So it’s at this point that instructions on how to actually play and earn with Star Atlas dry up.

As we get closer to launch and people begin playing the game, we can give greater insights into actual game mechanics.

This being said, players can play a minigame called SCORE, where players can deploy their fleet in order to earn APR. In actuality, this means you stake your NFTs to earn rewards.

NFTs and tokens

There are a few NFTs associated with Star Atlas. These are:

  • Ships – these vary in rarity, traits and value. Players need them to play the game and travel through space.
  • Collectibles – skins, posters, charms, crew gear and pets are all examples of collectibles. They often have in-game utility as well.
  • Structures – space stations, power plants and mining drills are all examples of Structures in the game that will be able to utilize to earn money. Be careful opponents don’t destroy yours.
  • Badges – these NFTs give players in-game benefits and access rights.

The native tokens are ATLAS and POLIS. ATLAS is the in-game currency and players require it to buy things in the marketplace. POLIS is the game’s governance token and gives players the ability to vote on strategic decisions that affect the community. You can buy both from decentralized exchanges and you can earn ATLAS through gameplay.

Does Star Atlas have a DAO?

Star Atlas does have a DAO and the game’s creators see it as one of the most important features of the entire Star Atlas ecosystem. When DappRadar caught up with Michael Wagner earlier this year, the CEO had this to say about them.

Decentralized Autonomous Organizations are blockchain-native governance systems that use automation to coordinate the directives of participants. DAOs are relatively new as a concept globally and they differ from traditional corporate structures in that they prioritize the member-ownership. These structures are the next step in the coordination of human capital and labor and this step is as historically important as the invention of the corporation itself.

Michael Wagner, Star Atlas CEO

The ultimate goal is to have a fully autonomous gaming ecosystem where the needs of the community are met via direct democratic voting. The voting rights are given to the community based on how many POLIS tokens they stake. But it’s not only the amount of tokens users stake that matters. The length of their staking period also contributes to it as well.

Star Atlas will utilize ‘multi-signature wallets and on-chain proposal voting’ so that ‘members decide economic and political control of the entire Star Atlas Metaverse.’

What was the 426Live event?

In July 2022, DappRadar attended the Star Atlas 426Live event. While there, we were treated to insightful presentations from members of the Star Atlas development team.

We learned how the game keeps its players’ assets secure and how the newly-launched native Galactic Marketplace functions. The team showed us the new Star Atlas custom PC cases, headphones and mouse pads.

And we learned that users can earn rewards for referring friends to the game. It’s called the StarPath and it uses Web3 technology to give benefits to people who benefit the Star Atlas ecosystem and community.

TIE fighters, anyone?

What is the Star Atlas Pre-Alpha Showroom?

The Showroom is Star Atlas´ first playable pre-alpha demo. It launched on September 29th via the Epic Games store for its NFTs owners, allowing them to view in-game items they’ve purchased within the game’s environment.

Epic Games’ creative tool, Unreal Engine 5, drives the Showroom pre-alpha demo. Star Atlas also launched the Foundation SDK, which is an open-source tool for Unreal Engine 5 developers to integrate their titles into the Solana blockchain more seamlessly.

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