Space Media Ventures announced a ground-breaking game that may change the way people experience the universe. “Neil deGrasse Tyson Presents Space Odyssey™,” a downloadable game of planetary exploration, kicked off its presale campaign on June 13, in conjunction with the E3 gaming industry convention.
The campaign is designed to bring in a community of space enthusiasts, gamers and world-builders of all ages to help Tyson create the ultimate gaming adventure.
“Neil deGrasse Tyson Presents Space Odyssey” will take players into space to explore the surface of planets. First stop is Proxima b, the closest known exoplanet to the solar system, about 4.2 light years from Earth. Proxima b was just discovered in 2016 and intrepid gamers will now be able to explore it. “I’m delighted to bring the wonders of space to everyone, and one of the most potent ways to accomplish this is through the visual and immersive power of gaming,” said Tyson. “I’m excited to be part of the creative team bringing this educational game to life that is based on real science and driven by real physics. “Space Odyssey” embodies a shared vision of creators, storytellers and science lovers who want to get people of all ages into space and exploration in ways that encourage curiosity and imagination.”
Space enthusiasts interested in participating in the limited-time presale event can select from several different packages, ranging from $29 USD to $10,000 USD, with a variety of perks and rewards. Those who participate in certain Kickstarter levels can gain early entry to the invite-only beta, exclusive access to the development team, in-game currency bonuses and limited edition and one-of-a-kind goodies. Some of those items will be autographed and personalized by Tyson.
“Space Odyssey” will allow players to travel through the cosmos to scientifically accurate planets, moons and exoplanets based in real science. The game will encourage players to engage in physics-based challenges and missions, or create their own, either as a single player and collaboratively. “Space Odyssey” will provide a dynamic world-building environment where they can “mod” cooperatively. The gameplay will all come under Tyson’s playful direction.
“Space Odyssey” will take players to planetary surfaces, allowing them to experience these worlds and add to them as real science and their collective imagination allows. Beyond Proxima b, the odyssey will continue as the game expands with the ongoing addition of new planets and moons to explore.
Tyson will be with you virtually. Players will enjoy a voice-activated digital assistant to help them in their journey: Neil’s real voice married with a powerful, cloud-based knowledge engine, which will be present throughout the player’s journey and ready to answer any astronomical question it can.
The game will also include involvement from other space authorities, including the “StarTalk All-Stars” (StarTalk is Dr. Tyson’s television show on National Geographic Channel and radio show and podcast), the National Space Society, Sky & Telescope.
Tyson’s vision is to build a large and engaged community of space and science enthusiasts, and encourage the community to participate in the game’s creation. “We want Space Odyssey to be a shared creation. Our vision is to inspire people to explore the wonders of space and science by allowing a community to be a part of the game’s development,” said Space Media Ventures Creative Director Mark Murphy.
Tyson will announce the launch of the Kickstarter campaign during a panel called “World Builders” that he is participating in at the E3 gaming convention in Los Angeles on June 13. The other panelists slated are David Benioff (co-creator, executive producer, Game of Thrones on HBO), James Gunn (writer/director, Guardians of the Galaxy movies), Kiki Wolfkill (executive producer, Halo), Randy Pitchford (creator, Borderlands) and television personality Chris Hardwick, who will moderate the panel.
The anticipated ESRB rating for “Neil deGrasse Tyson Presents: Space Odyssey,” is E for everyone.
About Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson
Neil deGrasse Tyson is a world-renowned astrophysicist, author, and science communicator. Since 1996, he has been the Director of the Hayden Planetarium in NYC, part of the American Museum of Natural History, where he founded its Department of Astrophysics in 1997. Tyson served on two White House commissions, one in 2001 on the future of the U.S. aerospace industry, and another in 2004 on the future of America’s Space Exploration Policy. He was awarded NASA’s Distinguished Public Service Medal same year.
From 2006 to 2011, he hosted the television show NOVA ScienceNow on PBS. Since 2009, he’s hosted the weekly radio show Star Talk, which has since also become a television series on the National Geographic Channel. In 2014, he hosted the television series Cosmos:A Spacetime Odyssey, a 21st century version of Carl Sagan's 1980 series Cosmos: A Personal Voyage.
Tyson is a graduate of the prestigious Bronx High School of Science, after which he earned his BA in Physics from Harvard, and his PhD in Astrophysics from Columbia. He has also been awarded twenty Honorary Doctorates, and is the author or co-author of 13 books, most recently Astrophysics for People in a Hurry
About Space Media Ventures
Space Media Ventures is a media company dedicated to developing games and immersive experiences that delight, inspire and deliver a sense of wonder about the universe and beyond. The Space Media Ventures team is comprised of world-renowned astrophysicist Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson, seasoned entertainment industry professionals and storytellers who are pushing the boundaries of edutainment.