Space Engine

Space Engine is little nifty simulator. With you can roam through simulated universe. Pretty much every celestial object is present and all known areas of the universe are presented, and the rest of it is generated procedurally.

While Space Engine is a bit intensive graphically, it’s well worth it. Some people may feel a bit overwhelmed due to its vast size; it is an universe you’re exploring in the end. Exploring is the keyword here, as SE is not a game. It has no gameplay mechanics or anything, but that’s beside the point. The newest version does include a controllable spaceship, which is a nice touch, but the implications for Space Engine’s use for computer games is phenomenal. For example, a space game with procedurally generated space would most likely fit into a CD. The beauty of this is that you need to change one variable in the code and the whole universe changes. Imagine a space exploration game that changes ever time you start a new game.

As the unknown regions of space are generated, findings very interesting pieces is both time consuming and extremely interesting. I’ve witnessed 2 Terra planets next top each other in the same solar system, and gas giants with moon with life. Moons with atmospheres are interesting to follow, as their day cycle is something differs depending on the planet they’re orbiting. Finding black holes is even more tedious, but they’re there. It took me two hours of careful searching to find one by my own, and I had to seek for spots where light would bend or curve otherwise.

Take a look at it, as you really aren’t going to lose anything by downloading it and diving into the sea of stars. It might not be similar time sink as some crafting games, but if you enjoy exploring millions upon millions possibilities, Space Engine is right up your alley.

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