It has been a long time coming, longer than I’ve wanted it to be, but the timing couldn’t be more suitable. A genre of games that was believed niche or lost is returning to power thanks to the existence of crowd funding and the results could not be more promising.
This is going to be the decade of the Space Simulators. Combat, Trading, Exploring all you could ever want to do outside the reach of our atmosphere, in a future far far away, that time is among us my friends and if you’re not excited you will be by the time you finish reading this article.
I will expand on the following topics in full-length articles to follow this one, but here is what I aim to cover in the next series of posts:
I would like to start our trip with a bit of history, the games that have defined this genre and what they actually represent. We will start off by looking at David Braben and Ian Bell‘s original Elite:
It not only set the standard for space simulators back in 1984 but it also recorded itself as the first true 3D game (there were other 3D games released before this one in 1980 and 1982 but they were simulated 3D, this had a truly 3D engine).
We will also take a look at the X series of games, which although not very popular, they are highly remarked within their closed community.
And last but no least we are going to talk about the game most people have heard of, EVE Online – the first space MMORPG and probably the largest. EVE’s contribution to the genres is immense and provided a good platform to evolve to the next form of space simulators.
EDIT: Full length article here
Reviving the past: The present of space simulators
Here I am going to outline what kickstarted (pun intended) the rebirth of this type of game. I’m not going to spoil it for you but it has to do a lot with the popularization of crowd-funded games, the gamer’s desires and the advancement of technology.
We are going to also talk about the 3 main contenders that have reignited everyone’s interest and desire for this type of game: Star Citizen, Elite: Dangerous and EVE Valkyrie. We’re also going to look at how these games came to be and how new technologies, how advancements in computer graphics, programming techniques and Virtual Reality have contributed to their new-founded success and finally we are going to look at why there is such a big desire for this type of game.
Reviving the past: Elite Citizen in a Valkyrie
Here we are going to explore each game in detail, what it offers and for what audience it’s targeted. We’re looking at details like the combat, the trading, the graphics and the experience. There are significant differences between the three as well as similarities with early fan circles developing around each, causing sometimes heated arguments on the internet as well as constructive opinions and criticisms at each other.
The past is revived: What are our expectations
And finally we cannot close off without asking the question “what does the future hold?”. Will this rebirth set a stage for future gaming or will it just be a dying fad? Will the players embrace this rebirth or will they kill it before it reaches maturity?