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Author Topic: MIT Game Labs - A Slower Speed of Light  (Read 1865 times)


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MIT Game Labs - A Slower Speed of Light
« on: January 03, 2013, 12:43 PM »
Earlier this week I've started playing with a new open sourced "game" from MIT called A Slower Speed of Light.

From the website:

A Slower Speed of Light is a first-person game prototype in which players navigate a 3D space while picking up orbs that reduce the speed of light in increments. Custom-built, open-source relativistic graphics code allows the speed of light in the game to approach the player's own maximum walking speed. Visual effects of special relativity gradually become apparent to the player, increasing the challenge of gameplay. 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). Players can choose to share their mastery and experience of the game through Twitter. A Slower Speed of Light combines accessible gameplay and a fantasy setting with theoretical and computational physics research to deliver an engaging and pedagogically rich experience.

Popular Mechanics already has a better write-up on it than I have time to put together, so take a look over here for the details and some videos.

What's interesting for developers and gamers is MIT's plans to release the source code in 2013. So that what amounts to a "relativity game engine" will soon be available for incorporation into other games.

This promises an interesting opportunity for space simulations in that it may soon be possible to escape from the "space opera" mindset of interstellar travel as used by all those StarTrek and Star Wars clones and begin constructing FTL-based games that more accurately reflect relativistic physics and visual effects.

Exciting! :Thmbsup:

« Last Edit: January 03, 2013, 06:06 PM by 40hz »


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Re: MIT Game Labs - A Slower Speed of Light
« Reply #1 on: January 03, 2013, 05:41 PM »
That looks really neat. :Thmbsup: