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What is a Space Sim?


DarkOne
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Hey Everyone

I am trying to get some community feedback on this question to get a feel for what people consider to be a space sim? I personally think if you are in some type of cockpit and you have a view of outerspace that is a space sim and 3rd person view in a 3D environment is one as well. I don't think top-down, side-scrollers and RTS based space games are Space Sims. But this is just my opinion what do you think?

I am trying to define this so I can make sure I cover the right material for the Space Sim Wiki that I will be starting and asking for help with 🙂 I was planning on cataloging all of the Space Sims ever. Yes it will be a fun undertaking and some fun actually because there will have to be a lot of digging to get some information some sims that are over 20+ yrs old now.

Thanks for the feeback.

-D1-


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Pinback
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I think your right to go with the 3d to start with,but I do think that some 2d and r.t.s games would have to be included at some point in the future.maybe as separate categories in the wiki

What about 3d game that take place on planets eg Hardwar,star fox,Rescue on fractalus ect.


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DarkOne
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Games like Hardwar that are on planets are still futuristic in nature so I will include them. I think I already started a small write up on Hardwar and think I downloaded the ISO (which is free I believe now) still debating whether to upload it to the server since its a hefty 500+ MB.

I don't see why not add other space style games like 2D when the 3D games are pretty much done. This will be an on going project for a while so if anyone has any in-depth knowledge of a certain game please let me know and I will grant people access to the wiki and let them edit away 🙂

-D1-


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 Anonymous
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personally think if you are in some type of cockpit and you have a view of outerspace that is a space sim and 3rd person view in a 3D environment is one as well.

Think that sums it up right there. Maybe adding Nexus, Homeworld and Sins of the Solar Empire type games would be right too because in certain areas of the game you can zoom in enough and it feels somewhat like a Space Sim instead of a Space Style RTS.


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spelk
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I think Space Sim can be loosley applied to any game in which there is an element of play in space.. the 'sim' aspect usually infers theres a simulation element to it, whether it be the physics, travel, exploration or economy. You've got a number of "fighter level" combat simulators which break down into free-form exploration or mission based, you also have "capital ship level" combat simulators (I'm thinking the likes of Nexus, Star Command III etc) and then you have an array of Real Time Strategy games where you control a whole fleet, and you often create more smaller units at your whim. You could expand it further to encompass the 4x strategy games, however they start to lose the 'Sim' aspect because their exploration and combat tends to be boiled down to an abstraction of what happens, rather than simulate it.

Space Sim, covers a lot of ground, but I'd use that to take in a lot of games genres that take place in an around Space (although not excluding some planetfall), and that have an element of Simulation to them. The Space Sim genre is considered a niche area of gaming anyway, so it probably needs all the help it can get, and your site is making a step towards that.


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Fald
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I define it as a game where you control a single space craft, with or without smaller dependant ships.


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 Anonymous
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Fald wrote:
I define it as a game where you control a single space craft, with or without smaller dependant ships.

Do you mean co-pilots?

spelk wrote:
I think Space Sim can be loosley applied to any game in which there is an element of play in space.. the 'sim' aspect usually infers theres a simulation element to it, whether it be the physics, travel, exploration or economy. You've got a number of "fighter level" combat simulators which break down into free-form exploration or mission based, you also have "capital ship level" combat simulators (I'm thinking the likes of Nexus, Star Command III etc) and then you have an array of Real Time Strategy games where you control a whole fleet, and you often create more smaller units at your whim. You could expand it further to encompass the 4x strategy games, however they start to lose the 'Sim' aspect because their exploration and combat tends to be boiled down to an abstraction of what happens, rather than simulate it.

I guess that needs to be broken up even further with a 'Space Arcade Sim' and a 'Space Simulation'. Because I don't think you can classify Freelancer and Nexus in the same game type because they both play entirely different.


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Bas
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I think Freelancer reserves an own area. Also because it is widely known.


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DarkOne
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Bas wrote:
I think Freelancer reserves an own area. Also because it is widely known.

It does have it's own area I just moved it to be a subforum of the general area. I was just trying to keep the most actively developed games with frontpage exposure. If i see FL getting more action I will move it up. But right now just trying to focus on the current games and ones in development to get people talking about them.


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OmegaOPS
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I think this really is answered by each indivuals definition of "Simulator", I'm old school I define what I play from what I have played, back when my 486, Xwing, and my Gravis Pheonix would spend hours in total rapture, when I would spend more money on a publisher known as "Janes" then on my clothing. I think about Descent, Starlancer,Freespace, WC (all) XvsT, and wondering if I would have enjoyed them half as much if 3P had been more then just a camera view, in retrospect I don't think I would have, I was totally immersed living my virtual fighter pilot life, waiting for that next cutsence with Mark Hamil, or Jon Rhys, telling me there was trouble. So at least to me if 3P is the norm it doesn't qualify as a "sim", that does not mean I won't enjoy a well put together game (I played EnB from Alpha to Closeing and EVE from Alpha, an 2 years after that) it just means my expectations are differant.


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Bas
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Darkone wrote:
Bas wrote:
I think Freelancer reserves an own area. Also because it is widely known.

It does have it's own area I just moved it to be a subforum of the general area. I was just trying to keep the most actively developed games with frontpage exposure. If i see FL getting more action I will move it up. But right now just trying to focus on the current games and ones in development to get people talking about them.

Eh, there are enough mod & server news mate 😛


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sgchr
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I believe space sim is a first or third person shooter in space. Other than this, games will fit in different categories. Like a space colonization game or X3 who deals heavily on economics, could be a space sim, but there are more like economic space simulators than space sims. If you have to shoots it, it's FPS with 3rd or 1st perspective, than it's a space sim. That's my opinion.


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DarkOne
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If you have to shoots it, it's FPS with 3rd or 1st perspective, than it's a space sim.

I could see games like Freelancer being called a FPS in space because there is no real simulation aspects like space construction, colonization and economy building. X3 personally would have been a great mixture of all of them if they just speed the game up and the combat engine.


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LtBlack
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~S~

To most of the players I have stayed in contact with believe that all space sims are best played as first person with the use of views (10x), (straight forward, straight back), (straightup, straightdown, left (3x) right (3x). Best of all they can be used as a great teaching tool that should be used. The future is going to be in space and alot of the space sims games now and pass are still around, playedand being made and played because of those points. Teaching players that space is a FULL 3d area and that has undiscovered areas and what it takes to get there.

Interactive panals, (switches, lights and various pieces of equipment), needs to be implymented into the games now. But making them simplistic is the key. Space Sim games are always going to be around, regardless of what equipment we use to play them. So why cant we use them as a teaching tool and have fun at the same time 🙂


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DarkOne
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LtBlack wrote:

Interactive panals, (switches, lights and various pieces of equipment), needs to be implymented into the games now. But making them simplistic is the key. Space Sim games are always going to be around, regardless of what equipment we use to play them. So why cant we use them as a teaching tool and have fun at the same time 🙂

There is a lot of people that would want this feature including me. I know that as I get older the more games have keys assigned and sometimes it is overwhelming. Or come out with a relative cheap console that will have several toggles/switches and lights to set the atmosphere. Hmm maybe there is a market there for that type of hardware.


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LtBlack
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~S~

There are lots of flight sim chairs out there that have already made boxes with all of that stuff mounted to it. The problem still is PROGRAMING THOSE *** BUTTONS LMAO!!!

It takes me 2 hrs to program a good profile in the X52 and so far it is the only stick that I have had any success with. Their key program works great, but some changes in the ini files are needed.

I also have old keys boards that I take apart and use.. They are usb and they still work as another input device. If any of you have an old usb board, they are great for those 4 handed moves that are a real pain when those other keys are always getting in the way...


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