Creating a Good Space Game

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Good space games – what are the ingredients? In this video, I’m talking about what makes a good space game brilliant. I go into depth about different space games, from No Man’s Sky to Elite Dangerous to Starfield. I also talk about how to make a great space game, from clever level design to captivating graphics.

If you’re in the market for a new space game, be sure to check out this video! I discuss the different aspects of a great space game and give you some tips on how to make your own game if you are making one. Whether you’re a fan of space games or just looking to learn more about them, this video is for you!
I spend 50 minutes talking about space games and I hope you enjoy this talky format video and learn a little something about space games!

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Coverage includes ps4, PS5, XBox series X/s, Xbox one, pc, Switch, and digital storefronts like Steam, as well as companies like Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo.
Buy, wait for a sale, rent, or never touch it. The Patented Karak review system to see if a game is worth a buy upon release or if I recommend waiting.

94 Comments

  1. I would love to see space game which approached ballistics and physics relatively seriously even if actual controls were fully automated. What I mean is turning spaceship around and using main engine to start braking thousands of kilometers away from target, vertical decks orientation to use acceleration to generate artificial gravity etc. Basically what The Expanse did if we want to stick to space opera references

  2. Whatever it is, Star Citizen is on the edge of cracking it

  3. One of my favourite sci-fi show was Stargate universe,stuck on ship heading for a pattern located in the big bang radiation and the crew scratching for supplies along the way a game along those lines would be good for me

  4. No mentions for the X series of games. Their UI is a bit clunky here and there, but they carried the torch for a good couple years before the space game resurgence in the early 2010s.

  5. One of the issues I had with Star Wars Squadrons and Eve Valkyrie, was that how busy the arenas were with wrecked space ships and the like. In a combat situation it made no sense to see a Star Destroyer put into a situation where no commander would put their ship. In comparison, the films and the earlier X-Wing and Tie Fighter and the Freespace games were set in open space where the capital ships or the space stations themselves were the obstacles you had to face. Just because you can now populate an area doesn't mean you have to.

  6. I grew up on a MS DOS game back in the 1990s by the name of : Wing Commander . It’s such an awesome game largely because of the worlds it created felt real . Yes mark hamill played col. Christopher Blair via live CGI in wing commander 3/ 4 and prophesy . Wing commander will always be one of my favorite space games

  7. What I think is a bit funny is that I recently picked up Sailwind and it scratches many of the itches that a space game does for me. You have challenging navigation, a tiny bit of exploration and if you want to, there's trading. It's your typical space game, just set on an ocean

  8. YT: keeps demonetizing and false age rating ACG videos
    Also YT: hates long videos because of low engagement
    ACG: Here's me rambling on for 1h on space game
    ramble on man! 😀

  9. Yo acg you use a Pop filter? If not you should.

  10. I'm b*tthurt starfield is an xbox exclusive

  11. A mash up of Freelancer, Wing Commander 3, Mass Effect 1 , 2, 3 and yes Andromeda, FreeSpace 2, Everspace 2 with some elements of Chorus and Dead Space. The downside of Mass Effect is the lack of planets you could land on later in the series. Need more planets to land on or transition into and fly around. Scan or fly all over the planet(s). Start colonies and see the progress every time you come back and it's based on how long you have not visited.

  12. Freelancer is my favorite, and got me to waste money on the $hit Citizen lies that it would "be a new Freelancer". Starfield will be the best space game ever if they can best capture a RPG life as a space traveller, and my fav game idea is a Star Wars RPG that plays like Starfield.

  13. For me a perfect space game would include these:
    Planetary trade, space ship battles, mecha battles (Gundam), exploration of planets and systems, space armies, fast travel (warp travel / light speed), communities, futuristic, multiple species (not only variants of humans), lore, customisation, terror, curiousity, story, enemies of different levels but you can take on at any point with consequences, consequences, multiple choices that genuinely affect the game, combat, threat, empires, death star??, Wonder, growth, variety of weapons (melee, guns etc), scale, distinct customisation, docking, graphics, frame rate for consoles minimum 60fps, resolution 2k minimum if not 4k, engineering of repairs, resource hunting, shields, jet packs, dog fighting, exocit species, super planetary weapons (death star), multiple job roles, crews with the ability to join someone else's, online shared play if you want to, sense of scale. And much more that we possibly could have but we can only dream.
    If there's a game that have quite a few of these on it please let me know, hopefully on console PS5 or even Xbox but if it's only on PC please let me know and also the specs I'd need to run it at least a recommended.

  14. Some magical tech that lets us accelerate to near C, would allow us to do relativity as an interesting game mechanic. a space trading game or empire builder, where you go from star system to star system… traversing 10-30 years each trip, and the world you visit has actually experienced that time, economies change, needs change… you have to anticipate where a planet is heading to provide them resources, tech, and news they might want to buy.

  15. Great Idea for a video.
    But it required editing to include footage from the games mentioned.
    That would've been nice.

  16. I think sense of scale doesn't necessarily require multiple star systems or even an entire solar system to give the right impression of space. Its moreso about the sense of vast emptiness and how quickly you can move through it, especially without any kind of special assistance. IMO Outer Wilds (not Outer Worlds) is probably the best space game to come out in the last decade or so and the total span of the solar system in that is only like 30km. The game creates a sense of scale by making the solar system impossible to traverse without your ship and taking even minutes to traverse even with it. You could totally make a space game that creates an appropriate sense of scale that takes place exclusively in the upper atmosphere of earth just by adhering somewhat close to reality in terms of speed and size.

  17. I found COD: IW to have a surprisingly good approach to this

  18. Callisto protocol was pretty good. I don't understand the hate it's getting tbh.

  19. Fire podcast. Great discussion Karak! I’m loving this video style

  20. I wish Volition stopped messing around with Saints Row and dig up their FreeSpace IP…

  21. In my opinion, X4 is the quintessential space game. By a long mile. It doesn't have everything(like planets) but man… you'd just have to play it to know. Then bring in the Star Wars mod ?? Come on

  22. I liked the idea. I really think you were hampered by refusing to talk about star citizen, especially in the discussion about having a “home”, something sc does really well. Also would have preferred footage more specific to what you were talking about. Still, great video.

  23. Ironically outer wilds tight short and sweet.

  24. Ares, Escape Velocity, Master of Orion, Wing Commander. Is there a great space game in the last two decades that isn't a spiritual successor to these archetypes?

  25. For me, the specific thing I want is the science fiction, gameplay, and storytelling method of SubNautica but set in a solar system. Think of Subnautica being chapter 1 and discovering a solar system to explore in the same way when/if you escape. I'd never play anything else.

  26. Space games are fun we just don’t need to many in a year cause that then drains people of wanting to play the newest space game coming out.

  27. I'm waiting for the release of Everspace 2, it will blow out everything else out of the water. The true heir to Freelancer. Unfortunately the release will wipe any progress made during Early Access so i have no interest in touching it until the final version.

  28. Generic Middle Aged White Guy Playing Games says:

    45:10 NMS does do towns. They added it in an update.

  29. Great stuff, would be even nicer if you could put some clips from individual games you are referring to. Or at least screenshots.
    I don't mean the background animations are bad, but would be a nice addition to have the actual games go by as well as you mention them.

  30. Im just gonna say it.. we need a Firefly game..

  31. For me it’s keep the damn controls as simple as possible. Not this 200 keystrokes and using the whole damn keyboard.

  32. Your podcast is currently my favorite, especially when Reg, Johnny, Silver, and Abzie (I’m sure I butchered the spelling) are all available. I just turned 40 so it’s easier to relate to you guys because a majority of your cast grew up in the same era as me( 80’s/90’s kids/teens). Keep it going man!

  33. Prey 2017 has one of the best atmospheres and is such a good game

  34. I feel like prey was and will forever be my favorite space game of all time. I can’t ever imagine anything ever topping that. I play that the mooncrash dlc a minimum of twice a year. I’m excited for the dead space remake.

  35. What makes a good NEED FOR SPEED game?

  36. I am still sad that we have never had the kind of Star Trek game I have truly wanted. I have been dying for a game where you literally start fresh out of the academy, get assigned to a ship, then proceed to have to perform mundane tasks in-between a few set piece narrative elements that draw from something like Mass Effect a bit. This part of the game is somewhat on rails because you are a low ranking officer. But as you climb the ladder you start having career decisions to make. After becoming Captain, you have a great deal of control of the ship and staff decisions. You can take on diplomatic missions, scientific missions, and of course respond to distress calls and risk combat situations that would remind me more of NMS and Elite. Giving you the capability to play the game in a scientific/micromanaging gameplay path, a well-written narrative gameplay path, and a combat gameplay path.

  37. Brilliant video, ACG – a series would be very welcome.

  38. SpaceBourne 2 came to my mind first. Played the beta and it's the best Space game I've played in a long time

  39. Really like this format, would love to see more!

  40. Just started the Mass Effect trilogy(first timer), and I just love the way they made traveling to new galaxies so fun and it’s a simplistic mechanic, but awesome. Pre-made planets or not, it’s cool.

  41. Codename MAT, epic space game, I completed that game once I figured how to accurately warp between planet sectors.

  42. There's so many good space games. Though that's a broad question that can encompass many genres. For example, Halo is often set in space
    But is it a space game? Rebel Galaxy is all in space, but it's more like a ship management game lol. Alien Isolation us a survival horror but us also a space game. Etc. Is a space game a game set in space or does it have to involve likely things you do in space?

  43. One major thing I have to point out is that we have to make a distinction between a space game and a space sim. A lot of the responses people gave were closer to looking for a space sim rather than a space game. The distinction is a fairly major one which I think would benefit the discussion to hash out.

  44. Star Valor and Starsector are great examples of (still developing) "good" space games! Heck, I'd go as far to say that they're "great" space games!

    Star Valor appeals to the min/maxers and theorycrafters, whilst Starsector appeals to isometric space simulation fanatics. They're both very different but still familiar whilst offering totally different types and amounts of depth that make each game unique! I highly recommend them both, especially in their current states, because they're still under development and are taking player feedback and suggestions into serious considerations. Take the leap and become a part of space sim/simcade history 😎

  45. I see a lot of people ubsubscribed from the channel due to this video. But I got to say I love doing them. EDIT that has now reversed lol. It just took awhile I guess
    The patrons and people on spotify and itunes always want some discussion videos so I loaded this out to them first but here it is on youtube. The general open-ended question was "what makes a good space game?" It was left insanely wide open so that the person answering could decide what that even meant and just go for it in terms of whatever answer they had. Then I discussed their comment.
    Just something laid back for your tuesday.

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