GENERAL


Is there a roadmap?


A short-term roadmap can be found here:

https://trello.com/b/ip2zVHUa/reentry-an-orbital-simulator-roadmap


Please note that this does not include my visions and my planned features, and some NDA features. Its intent is to give you a general state of the development work currently being done, and where we are on the path to version 1.0. I have many plans for this simulator, and reaching 1.0 is just the beginning.



I have some suggestions and/or bug reports, how do I submit them?


The easiest and most direct way is to post it in the #suggestions channel over at the official Reentry Discord group. I'm active there, and we have a team of Test Pilots who registers and handles suggestions and feedback. Posting the log file also helps.



What will Reentry - An Orbital Simulator 1.0 look like?


I'm currently on a journey towards Reentry 1.0. The plan for 1.0 is to have the core features of the Mercury, Gemini, CSM and the LM spacecrafts covered, and that they have a stable implementation. In addition, the game mechanics will work, and the simulator will have more missions and content, and a mission editor so you can create your own missions and campaigns. You can read more about this in the Roadmap and in the Early Access section below. After 1.0, the goal is to improve the existing spacecrafts, add more content, and hopefully multiplayer modes and Virtual Reality support. In addition, new spacecrafts might find their way into Reentry. These additions might be added directly to the core of the sim, or as optional DLCs.



Will you add the Space Shuttle?


Having my own implementation of the Space Should would be a dream come true. My initial vision was to have support for the Space Shuttle, however Project Mercury, Gemini, the CSM, and the LM will need to get into a more complete state before I will consider adding the shuttle. This does not mean I won't do it, I just can't prioritize it just now. There are a few really good Space Shuttle simulators out there, and I recommend you to check them out!



What about Russian spacecrafts?


It makes sense to have Russion spacecrafts in Reentry. I have been looking into this for quite some time, and if there is one that I would like to implement, it would be the Soyuz TMA or the TMA-M variant. However, getting the documentation I need (in English), and the data I need seems to be very hard. I have access to the Souyz TM manual, but that's about it. If you have manuals, please reach out and send them my way so I can do some research!



Will Reentry be translated into other languages?


This is something I aspire to do. I have started working on the logic to make this possible, but I really need to complete the core of the sim before doing this. The reason is that so much is being changed over time, and as I learn things, so it would be very counterproductive to do this.



Why are there differences between the Steam and the Windows Store versions?


These are two very different platforms. While Steam aims for the desktop market, Windows Store can be compared to stores for the mobile market (AppStore etc.). Due to code execution security, many SDK and functional calls are different or not allowd on Windows Store, making it impossible to port parts of the project. I have done my best, and for most user, the two versions will feel identical. The major differences the support for SteamVR (meaning no VR in the Windows Store version) and TrackIR. This list can grow as features are added. In addition, the certification process and the manual steps required by the app certification team in Microsoft leads to delayed and slower updates, making the process slightly harder than for Steam versions. Due to this, I submit only a few of the updates I roll out through Steam to the Windows Store publishing pipeline (multiple updates are packed into a larger update) . This does not mean that the majority of the new features are skipped in the Windows Store version, but simply that more of these features are packed into less frequent but larger updates.




EARLY ACCESS


Why Early Access?


Reentry - An Orbital Simulator is a physics-based space flight simulator where you will learn how to operate and fly spacecrafts used in real life. The project is in active development and currently has the spacecrafts from Project Mercury (beta stage), Project Gemini (alpha stage) and Project Apollo (Preview stage).


In such a complex simulator as this I believe in a development process where the community is involved early, and through Early Access I hope to both get feedback on what's already in the box, as well as suggestions on improvements, details and feature requests.

I'm constantly working on new features, as well as adding more and more details and improvements so you can get a simulator that is as close to reality as possible.



Approximately how long will this game be in Early Access?


Given the complexity of building a realistic space simulator, it is hard to give an accurate estimate. This game will evolve over time, and reaching 1.0 is just the beginning. The journey to version 1.0 is all about getting all the current spacecrafts (Project Mercury, Project Gemini and Project Apollo with the Lunar Module) as a stable release candidate during 2020. However, this does not mean the game can't be expanded further with other space programs like the Space Shuttle or the Russian programs as an expansion to the simulator. 



How is the full version planned to differ from the Early Access version?


In the full version (1.0) of the simulator I wish to have the following improvements and features ready:
- Complete the simulation of the Command Module and the Lunar Module of Project Apollo
- More historical missions for all the space programs
- A full campaign where you start with the basic suborbital flight and end up having landed on the Moon
- Custom missions and Steam Workshop support
- Broadcast spacecraft telemetry so you and your friend can fly a mission, where one controls the spacecraft and the other plays mission control. This will allow you to create your own flight plans, and execute them
- EVA's
- More system failures and emergency procedures



What is the current state of the Early Access version?


Reentry - An Orbital Simulator has been in development since 2015. The simulator is already in a fully playable state where you can complete missions and enjoy the simulator.

It currently allows you to sit inside a highly interactive virtual cockpit for Project Mercury, Project Gemini, the Command Module of Project Apollo, the Lunar Module and the Lunar Roving Vehivle. Almost every switch, fuse, gauge and button can be modified and will trigger a reaction in the simulator.

The simulator also has a high resolution representation of Earth so you can see landmarks and details on Earth from orbit, as well as a realistic view of the stars surrounding you.



Will the game be priced differently during and after Early Access?


The price will most likely increase when the game is released, and during development. The simulator might further expand with DLCs etc.



How are you planning on involving the Community in your development process?


I'm actively seeking community feedback and suggestions through the various feedback platforms and through Discord.

There are many details and systems to simulate in Reentry, in addition to the realistic physics on launching into space, orbiting Earth and landing on the Moon. Community feedback helps me prioritize the tasks and features I wish to implement, as well as fixing serious issues and bugs.

There are many other space enthusiasts who might know some details I don't, as well as have feature requests I haven't even thought about. By involving the community, I can learn about these and add features and functionality based on the feedback.

My goal with Early Access is to work with the Community to create an accurate, realistic and fun space flight simulator.




VIRTUAL REALITY


What about support for Virtual Reality?


A simulator like this needs VR support, and this is why I decided to release a preliminary support for Virtual Reality in Mercury Missions. It leverages the SteamVR SDK (so this is not working on the Windows Store version as it does not support the SteamVR SDK). I have had support for VR in internal branches for a long time but have not yet had the time to focus on it. I decided to just release its current state for Project Mercury, so those who wish can start helping me in testing this. This is in an experimental phase and requires an HMD with motion controllers. Gaze is considered (do you wish to have support for Gaze? Let me know!) but it is not ideal for Reentry.





MULTIPLAYER


How will Reentry support multiplayer game modes?


Work has started on releasing a player driven Mission Control for Mercury (the Mercury Control Center). This allows a Mercury Astronaut (a player) to host the game session as a multiplayer game. Telemetry is being broadcasted from the spacecraft to the Mission Control Center. Other players can join in and work as a team to execute planned missions, and react to failures.


What about co-op for Gemini and Apollo?


Co-op would be great for spacecrafts that supports more than one astronaut. This is something I wish to support in the future, and could be possible by using the Mission Control Live logic as the basis. More research has to be done in this field.