By Craig Pearson on September 3rd, 2013 at 3:00 pm.
Oh wow. I can’t not get excited whenever I poke my head into Limit Theory’s devblogs. Developer Josh Parnell is so casual and relaxed about building a space sandbox that sits alongside Elite, Eve, Star Citizen, and X Rebirth. He really should be more full of himself. In the first video below, when he’s showing off a procedurally generated planet surface, he points out that until a few hours before he hadn’t ever attempted to code water. He was flying over a lake. I nearly wept procedural tears. My joy was short-lived when he pointed out that players probably wouldn’t be able to fly on planet surfaces, which makes the level of detail both laudable and ridiculous.
And that’s not even the most exciting bit. What’s really, genuinely, off-the-scale exciting is the work he’s putting into the history of the universe. The engine will build an “abstract model” of the world as well as building an abstract model of the interactions. So it can simulate what’s going on in a very large region of space to give you a huge, living background to play in. That’s exciting for all kinds of reasons, and very apt for an Elite-style adventure game. And this will (hopefully) allow the game to simulate the history of the universe you’re playing in before you arrive. Like Dwarf Fortress, it’ll have a backstory in place that’s been generated according to the game’s rules.