Developer’s Journal #1 – First Look

Apparently, if you make the best game in the world, and then hide it under a rock in a dark corner of the internet, it’s like a tree falling in the woods when nobody’s around. I’m coming late to this, “actually give the world half a chance to find out your content exists” thing, but at least I brought content.

What happens when you travel faster than the speed of light? You can’t, with your tomfoolery nonsense. Well, what if you could?

Forget how it could happen, for a minute, and let’s just ask, “What would happen if you could?” If there’s a target somewhere over there, reflecting light to my eyes, and I suddenly “jump” faster than light over to the target, it’s not clear how I could do that, but special relativity suggests I arrive before the last light in my frame from the target was emitted or reflected,* before I “jumped.”

I get there before the last light at my time “coordinate” left the target; I’ve time traveled. That might be “why” it probably can’t happen, because we could break causality. Well, causality is going out the window, today.

Actually, it doesn’t even have to. When you’d arrive at the target, after the “jump,” you’d be outside the “past light cone” of yourself before you jumped, but now we’re launching into a physics lesson, and you want to see game play.

Well, here it is:

What if you could experience hyper-relativistic time travel in virtual reality, on the mobile phone already in your pocket, with a simple accessory that costs you less than $15?

It’s done, already! No, the game still needs a good bit of work, but the physics module is basically already done and mobile-ready. The hardware-limited development has already been implemented and tested. Phew! The physics descends from the OpenRelativity project by the MIT Game Lab, (who, I should say, I have no affiliation with or endorsement from, but I have to thank them profusely for their awesome open source physics module). Beyond the work by the MIT Game Lab, though, I’ve added a couple hundred repository commits worth of new features, including:

  • Relativistic collision mechanics,
  • Handling for acceleration and gravity (with Einstein’s principle of equivalence,)
  • Lighting,
  • Generalized space-time geometry support, (like for black holes,)

…and mobile-ready versions of all of the above, along with many general optimizations and improvements. Oh, and time travel. Let’s not forget what the game is about. (Much of the relevant work went back to my open source fork of the OpenRelativity project—infinite thanks, MIT Game Lab—but not the time travel, yet.)

What does that leave? Well, mostly level design and other playable content, but also something for you: beta testing!

I’m not quite ready to announce when the beta will start. It might take a couple of months. I’ve added a contact page up in the navigation bar, though, and anyone should please feel free to reach out to me to be considered for joining the beta test. (Please do not leave these requests in the public comments.)

“To infinity, and…!” my email inbox.

(More updates soon, and regularly.)