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  1. #1
    Activated Node seshFriend's Avatar
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    The emerging age of massive space sims

    Starting this thread to discuss games that are massive universe space sims that all seem to be coming out in the near future.

    First - Elite: Dangerous
    Continuation of old school space combat series Elite which is pretty important being cited as an influence for pretty much every space combat sim after.
    http://www.elitedangerous.com/

    Second - Star Citizen
    This one is in development by a company headed Chris Roberts, a legend in the field having created Wing Commander and Freelancer.
    https://robertsspaceindustries.com/

    Third - No Man's Sky
    This one is being created by an indie studio Hello Games. The best way to describe it seemingly is sci-fi space travel minecraft.
    http://www.no-mans-sky.com/

    It is safe to say we are in the age of zombie survival games. Are space combat sims the future? Will this be the PC gaming experience that silences critics of the PC gaming market? Will we finally stop seeing millions of zombie survival game clones?

    Personally I'm very excited and will probably buy all three of these games, in fact I already bought Star Citizen. If there are any I missed please mention them here.

    Discuss.

  2. #2
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Grizzly's Avatar
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    Space sims have no present
    Only a past filled with horror
    And a future they can only dream of

    ---

    Obligatory: some of the older space sims still shine! Freespace 2, for example, is still being developed by fans. The IP was, unfortunately, cancelled because Interplay did not advertise it (seriously, lots of Freespace 1 fans did not know there was a sequel in the first place! - this is from before the E-xsplosion as you can geuss). But regardless, it remains Volition's best game to date, and is very much worth playing. Get it on GOG, then apply fanmade sauce.
    Last edited by Grizzly; 30-08-2014 at 10:06 PM.

  3. #3
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Heliocentric's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grizzly View Post
    Space sims have no present(Just fixing a typo).
    Only a past filled with horror
    And a future they can only dream of
    Just like Burritos but in reverse, they never live, they are not, and then they are no more.
    I'm failing to writing a blog, specifically about playing games the wrong way
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  4. #4
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    You forgot Limit Theory! I am as hyped for Limit Theory as I am for No Man's Sky.

    http://ltheory.com/

    I absolutely recommend watching the dev blogs. Josh is an extremely talented individual and clearly loves what he does.

  5. #5
    Activated Node Jorum's Avatar
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    I am hoping Star Citizen doesn't collapse under it's own ambition because the fully modelled ships are just gorgeous.
    Watch a video of people walking around inside a Constellation for example and all the bunks and tables and tell me you don't want your own goddamn spaceship house. Also look at this beauty: https://robertsspaceindustries.com/p...an/Merchantman

  6. #6
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus rockman29's Avatar
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    I don't think No Man's Sky is in the same kind of series as the other two, but I could be wrong. Not sure.

    Elite and Space Citizen look a bit more hardcore.

  7. #7
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    Whilst Enemy Starfighter isn't looking to be as open world as the other ones you listed, it's still definitely a very spacey space sim.

  8. #8
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Kadayi's Avatar
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    Albeit I'm hugely sceptical about No Mans Sky of the 3 it looks the most interesting to me. Star Citizen feels like it's probably going to collapse under its own weight and elite just looks like it's for joystick fanatics only.
    Why yes you're right I'm deliciously evil

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  9. #9
    Network Hub EPICTHEFAIL's Avatar
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    I would like to mention Evochron Mercenary as being another indie contribution. True, it has been out for several years now, but it still offers amazing scale, though it is somewhat dated with regards to the gameplay.

    Oh, and ED isn`t joysticks-only at all. It is very M+KB friendly, if you spend a minute or 2 in the options menu. It also has a rather fun flight model, and about half of the available weapons are hitscan, which is quite refreshing to see IMO.

    I still have no idea what NMS is supposed to be, though the trailers thus far indicate something like a first-person version of Spore`s space stage, minus the endless tide of untextured phalluses. Regardless, it is PeasantStation-only, so I don`t really give a toss.

  10. #10
    Lesser Hivemind Node TheDreamlord's Avatar
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    There is also Starpoint Gemini 2 which is currently in beta in EA and which I caved in and bought last evening from humble store since it's 66% off.
    It looks quite nice and it has some interesting concepts. Think maybe a lighter version of X3?
    I spent a couple of hours with it and I'm happy with the seven odd quid I spent on it, but I will wait until full release to explore further.

  11. #11
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus soldant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kadayi View Post
    Albeit I'm hugely sceptical about No Mans Sky of the 3 it looks the most interesting to me. Star Citizen feels like it's probably going to collapse under its own weight and elite just looks like it's for joystick fanatics only.
    Pretty much why I'm not buying into Star Citizen. The more I hear about it, the more unlikely it seems to reach those goals, and the more I wonder if it'll just end up trying to sustain itself with microtransactions as time goes by. Also worth noting that the original goals for Freelancer were kinda similar and it didn't reach anywhere near that potential (great game though). I'd like to play Elite but I don't want to break out the joystick for it. Tempted to try though!

    Quote Originally Posted by EPICTHEFAIL View Post
    I would like to mention Evochron Mercenary as being another indie contribution. True, it has been out for several years now, but it still offers amazing scale, though it is somewhat dated with regards to the gameplay.
    E:M wasn't bad but it had a terrible combat model that basically killed it for me. Sliding past each other to 'trick' the AI isn't fun. I hate the silly "But it's realistic!" argument because pretty much nothing else is.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheDreamlord View Post
    There is also Starpoint Gemini 2 which is currently in beta in EA and which I caved in and bought last evening from humble store since it's 66% off.
    Actually this one is really good, it basically feels like the true successor to Freelancer at this point. Full release is next month and they have lots of other neat concepts planned for expansions.
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  12. #12
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    Star Citizen is extremely likely to be a repeat of Freelancer: an ultimately good (but not amazing) game that fails to meet the absolutely ludicrous buildup and hype. They're just adding too much at the same time instead of concentrating on the core mechanics that need to be polished and fun. It's all well and good if you can model every thruster and put them in the simulation, but if the ship handles like a barge (which it did last I tried), nobody will play.

    Elite has good potential but they need to get off their high horse regarding their procedural generation. Yeah, it's neat that they're generating their systems using relatively correct physical simulations of solar system formation, same for gas giants and all that, but it doesn't mean much if the game's as bare as it is now. The vast majority of the time you're alone in space with your giant cockpit and there's maybe a planet or two in the background. The starter ship's not much fun and there's a cruel lack of guidance on all levels (tutorials, economic data for trading, etc.).

    No Man's Sky seems to have a more focused premise. They're just making a big sandbox universe and letting you explore it. With the amazing art style and smooth transition to land, I can see myself just running around exploring for a while. I wouldn't need much in terms of "gameplay" if the procedural generation is varied enough, and I have a feeling they won't be charging absurd prices for the game like bloody ED and SC.

    Limit Theory has to be my favorite though. The guy obviously loves what he's doing and knows what he's doing, and the systems-driven mechanics look simply amazing. I don't expect the game to have the level of polish of ED or SC due to time and budget constraints (it is after all running on a budget 250x smaller than SC's), but I also expect something much deeper and less focused on being flashy.

  13. #13
    Lesser Hivemind Node TheDreamlord's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by soldant View Post
    Actually this one is really good, it basically feels like the true successor to Freelancer at this point. Full release is next month and they have lots of other neat concepts planned for expansions.
    Really, it's out this September? That's great, I didn't know! You have a source?

  14. #14
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    Space sims are new zombie games.

    Honestly, I can't even recognize them from each other, maybe except No Man's Land, but that's because it have planets full of vibrant colours and awesome animals.

  15. #15
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus soldant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheDreamlord View Post
    Really, it's out this September? That's great, I didn't know! You have a source?
    I submit this video as evidence.
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  16. #16
    Lesser Hivemind Node TheDreamlord's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by soldant View Post
    I submit this video as evidence.
    Fantastic! I really don't like buying early access games (I have a total of three, SPG2, E:D and Next Car Game), because I don't see the point in playing an unfinished product. One month wait is more than acceptable though. Cool! Thanks for the link.

  17. #17
    Network Hub EPICTHEFAIL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FriendlyFire View Post

    Elite has good potential but they need to get off their high horse regarding their procedural generation. Yeah, it's neat that they're generating their systems using relatively correct physical simulations of solar system formation, same for gas giants and all that, but it doesn't mean much if the game's as bare as it is now. The vast majority of the time you're alone in space with your giant cockpit and there's maybe a planet or two in the background. The starter ship's not much fun and there's a cruel lack of guidance on all levels (tutorials, economic data for trading, etc.).


    As an ED beta player I feel I have to point out that most of those complaints are down to the fact that it`s a beta. Frontier have announced the ability to see and interact with NPC ships in supercruise mode, as well as more varied mission types, news announcements that inform you about profitable trade routes and so on. Besides, there is already a whole tab in the galaxy map dedicated to showing trade routes and the categories of wares that can be traded for a good profit. And yeah, the Sidewinder does suck, but that`s kind of the point.

  18. #18
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Wenz's Avatar
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    Not a space sim but the next aquanox is coming out sooner or later.
    post in progress

  19. #19
    Network Hub rsherhod's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by soldant View Post
    I submit this video as evidence.
    I'm not convinced that they'll make a September deadline. They've yet to release the single player campaign. Also lots of the options don't do anything.

    I'm very much looking forward to playing the campaign when it comes out, mind.

  20. #20
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    Somehow I fear that multiplayer aspect will turn these games into griefers heaven.

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