Space time.

Michaël Samyn, March 29, 2012

Today was spent in space. I made an endless space simulator for the beginning of the game. The idea is to suggest the underlying premise that the action takes place on a remote space station. I didn’t want to use a cut scene of a fixed length because I want players to decide for themselves how deep into space they want to travel. If you like, you can spend hours in this scene before starting the game.

I had first created a program that generates solar systems with a sun in the middle, a random number of planets circling around it and moons circling the planets. It wasn’t even close to realistic but still the enormous size differences between suns and planets and the distances between solar systems made the scene far from evocative.

So then I made a program with simple particles and a planet here and there and its lovely and mesmerizing.

It doesn’t look anything like the arresting view we get from Jupiter and its four moons through our newly acquired telescope. Actual navigation through space must be maddening, crossing the vast emptiness between planets and obsessively staring at your destination for months, years on end. But that’s stuff for another game.

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