Hello! I'm Tom. I designed a game called Gunpoint about rewiring things and punching people, I'm on a weekly gaming podcast called The Crate & Crowbar, I wrote these two short stories in the Machine of Death collections, and I used to write articles like these for PC Gamer. I'm now prototyping two new games, Heat Signature and one about grappling hooks.
Pentadact: If only there were a Radiolab episode about this.
Pentadact: Cheers! Right now collision is done per-pixel...
BadBannana: Hmm, Arstotzkan Coffee actually sounds really good...
I forgot part of the plan for this: your near-lightspeed space ambulance would also be indestructible and have perfect inertial dampening. So to decelerate, you just try to crash into all the debris you were trying to avoid as you picked up speed. So it’d go:
More Amateur Hour
Eagle0600: This sounds like a decent mobile game. Especially the deceleration, which I'm going to describe with a word I stole from elsewhere: "Lithobreaking."
Jason L: I think I've spotted a problem. We know what happens when a midsize rock going a few klicks per second hits a planet. If a relativistic mass hit a planet at relativistic speeds, there wouldn't be a planet left to cure anyone.
Coincidentally, I had never known of Queen's '''39' until a month ago. It's a melancholy sci-fi folk song about the twin paradox by the astrophysicist rockstar, what a world, and it is fantastic. I learned of '39 and Pokarekare ana at about the same time, and they tag-teamed my brain for five days solid.
(I learned of '39 thanks to Idle Thumbs' Kerbal Space Program stream. It's 3.5 hours long, but I feel it's worth watching if those who read this have time to watch things; I don't, but I've watched it twice and listened to it more. It's great both for Idle Thumbs content and for KSP LP. Part of that is that there's a punchline with a two-hour-long setup, taking the stream out in a blaze of glory.)
Philippe: Tom, I think you missed MIT's "A Slower Speed of Light"
"These effects, rendered in realtime to vertex accuracy, include the Doppler effect (red- and blue-shifting of visible light, and the shifting of infrared and ultraviolet light into the visible spectrum); the searchlight effect (increased brightness in the direction of travel); time dilation (differences in the perceived passage of time from the player and the outside world); Lorentz transformation (warping of space at near-light speeds); and the runtime effect (the ability to see objects as they were in the past, due to the travel time of light)."
Daedalus: I really want a space sim that incorporates relativity. Also one that incorporates Newtonian Mechanics would be nice to ^^
Jason L: Not relativity, but check out Independence War/I-War 1 and 2 for some fascinating Newtonian space combat. You (mostly) command ships in the 100-meter class from multiple crew stations, with complex systems modeling, a unique point-defense shield system and a three-drive hierarchy. The first game and its superior expansion pack Defiance are pretty strictly linear and puzzle/gimmick-oriented, though with mostly fantastic puzzles, while the sequel is open-world.
Jason L: I'll add that I made myself nostalgic and went back to watch some of the pre-rendered cutscenes from I-War. They still hold up! At least, as well as they did at the time. The stupid (Mishima's decision) and ugly (people, President King''s voice acting) bits were so from the start, but they're fun to watch thanks to mostly good plotting and performances and a lively camera. Most of the presented sci-fi information gubbins is dense and plausible too!
On the other hand it's sad that these are still funnier, scarier, more interesting than most cutscenes 15 years on in genres more focused on human beings.
Also. the adversaries, the Independence Fleet, are typically referred to as the "indies". Cue much tittering.
Jonas: This sounds like an amped-up version of Hover (my favourite Microsoft game ever). I can't wait for someone to make it.
Jason L: Hah! Days later, ASSoL's devs release their framework.
humfuzz: Here's a really great relativity-centric game: http://testtubegames... ...aptor.html
It's a top down puzzler where you're a raptor travelling at near-light speeds. You have to dodge cannonballs using relativistic effects and solve colour changing puzzles, etc.
Jordan: Cool idea, gameplay sounds similar to Ridiculous Fishing though.
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