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Surviving Mars: Below and Beyond released back in early September, and to say the reviews have been poor would be quite the understatement but they're continuing to try and improve it.

Released on November 4 was the first content update for Below and Beyond, where they said the first focus was around making it easier to use the Underground, Asteroid Lander and Elevator. Not only that, they're trying to give you more of a point to doing either for your main colony. That is probably the biggest issue with the expansion, it added other places to explore and build, which sounded nice but for so little gain.

Main Highlights Include:

  • Elevator Grid resource transfer: The elevator now transfers excess power, water, and oxygen between the Martian Surface and Underground. This enables you to start expanding in the underground while relying on your production on the surface.
  • Elevator Auto mode: You can now set a minimum amount of resources you want on the Surface and Underground. While the elevator is in auto mode it will automatically request resources when under this minimum. You can also still manually request resources.
    - Requesting resources for the Elevator is now done on the side where you need the resources, instead of where you send them from. With arrows indicating from where to where the resources will be transported.
  • Reworked cave-ins: Cave-ins no longer require a specific tech to clear, and blocked tunnels that required the landscaping tool are also removed. To still maintain an element of gradual exploration, we introduce the new Collapsed Tunnels which do still require the tech to be cleared.
    - Increased room for exploration in the underground, greatly reduced the number of tunnels blocked while the new Collapsed tunnels are placed such that they lead to larger new areas to explore or extra anomalies to find. We also increased the number of anomalies in the underground.
  • Exotic Minerals upgrades: We introduced a few upgrades to surface buildings that cost Exotic Minerals;
    - Improved Photovoltaics; doubles power production for solar panels
    - Exotic Mineral Treatment; greatly increases health and sanity recovery from Infirmaries (and Medical Posts if you have In-dome Building Pack).
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So far it hasn't really moved people on their reviews, with the expansion still sat on a Very Negative user rating on Steam.

If you don't own Surviving Mars it's available for Linux from Humble Store, GOG, Paradox and Steam.

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I am the owner of GamingOnLinux. After discovering Linux back in the days of Mandrake in 2003, I constantly came back to check on the progress of Linux until Ubuntu appeared on the scene and it helped me to really love it. You can reach me easily by emailing GamingOnLinux directly. Find me on Mastodon.
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1 comment

Nezchan Nov 8, 2021
Yeah, from what I've seen of it so far, there's still no reason at all to pick it up. From what I'm seeing it seems like even though they're making it less superfluous, it's still quite unbalanced, buggy, and frankly expensive (more than 2/3 the price of the game itself) for what you're getting.

Honestly, if they just made spreading plant life in Green Planet a bit less grindy and slow compared to the rest of the terraforming, I'd be happy with that.
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