The Kepler Colony: Journey(s)


This is the WIP thread for the game The Kepler Colony: Journey(s)

So the Earth has been destroyed, but you managed to escape on a large colony spaceship headed towards the only identified habitable planet, Kepler 62e. The catch: The journey is 1300 years long!

Depending on the type of spaceship, you will have completely different stories to play through, each looking at life from a different perspective.

This game will effectively be 15 different stories in one, with over-lapping in some playthroughs but at least 5 completely different stories. The game will be the sequel to The Kepler Colony: Evacuation, which was completed on 22nd October 2017 and will be submitted to CoG very soon.

You will be able to play the game as a continuation of Evacuation, or as a totally independent game with settings of your own choosing (with more varied settings unlockable as you complete more of the game).

A demo will be posted in due time.

The Kepler Colony: Evacuation (OUT NOW!)


This game will be based predominantly on 10 story arcs, listed below. I have brief ideas for each arc, but I would be willing to listen to suggestions from the forum for specific ideas that could be explored. Use the arc description to help. The rough word count is in brackets at the end. If you are unsure of any of this, take a look at the prequel; Evacuation.

A Cryogenic ship with cybernetics allowed. (20k)
B Cryogenic ship with robotics allowed. (20k)
C Cryogenic ship with neither robotics nor cybernetics allowed. (20k)
D Habitations ship with cyberntics. (10k)
E Habitation and robotics. (10k)
F Habitation only. (10k)
G Cryogenics and habitation specific. (10k)
H Habitation only specific. (10k)
I Small spaceship population. Less than 20,000 (10k)
J Large spaceship population 20,000 plus. (10k)


This seem much more ambitious than evacuation but I’m sure you’ve got the knowledge and talent to pull this off!!!

Games like this are why I came here in the first place. Thats real replayability.





What if both robotics and cybernetics are legal?


Congrats on finishing Evacuation, Andy! And this one looks awesome. Good luck.


@cascat07 The default would jump to the Robotics scene, but I will add some cybernetic references and a little overlap between the two.

@cyanide While ambitious, the word count will be less than Evacuation (okay, probably a little more by the time it is done!)

@Samuel_H_Young Finally, eh? :smiley: That’ll be 5 years by the time it’s actually released!


Yeah, that’s crazy. I have some vague plans of revamping Paradox in the future but right now my focus still lies on The Magician’s Task, The Magician’s Enigma, and then Winter of the Bovine. Can’t wait til Evacuation comes out, btw.


So let’s get the ball rolling: Scene one: a. Robot controlled Cryogenic spaceship where all but a handful of pasdengers are asleep. A very small group (5-10) of people wake once a month/ every 6 months / once a year to make sure everything is ticking along okay with the robots. Then after a week, they return to their deep sleep. You would play as a member of this group.

What can happen? What can go wrong? What would life be like knowing you are working and giving your life to keep others fresh for the new planet that you may never see…?


Running into something is probably the biggest problem. Another would be any delay in retiring to the sleep will probably eat through the food stores on the ship faster than the builders predicted. As the equipment gets older certainly cryopods and what not will fail. Some people may not be able to go back to sleep or are emergency woken. They of course will live thier remaining days on a ship full of frozen people potentially going nuts and turning into a serial murder or something. Passengers would be a good film to watch for inspiration.


Some good thoughts here! Passengers is a great film that sadly took up my original idea for the robot maintained ship - a worker(not passenger) who couldnt get back to sleep so would have to live their life on the ship alone. (I was first planning this game in 2012 and started writing in 2013 - a few years before passengers was released). I think the robots have to be heavily involved in both problems and solutions we encounter.


Ooh…If I remember correctly my spaceship usually ended up with about 40k passengers, though only 2000 in habitation in those two luxury modules. I figured I’d stick the crew that is essential during the voyage in one of the modules and those 1000 celebrity tickets in the other (no sense putting the celebs in cryo since they are not vital to the new colony and they might provide eye-candy to the essential crew during the voyage too.). :grin:
I always allow robotics but disallow cybernetics.

True, radiation hazards and rogue comets are probably the most dangerous, discounting the possibility of actual intelligent aliens of course.


I was thinking of something a little more mundane like micrometeorites, dust clouds, and radiation. Space is pretty big and the most dangerous times for a collision would probably be exiting the solar system and entering the Kepler 62 system. Depending on how fast the ship is going even a very small rock could cause a lot of damage.


But that’s why we have a navigational deflector, oh wait we don’t, sorry my bad. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:
True, let’s hope the sensors are up to the task of collision avoidance.


Setting the scene more: the cryogenic sleep is administered first with a gas to make you sleep, then with coolants reducing your body temperature slowly. The entire process from awake to in stasis takes an hour but you are asleep within a minute or two. Being a crew member, your cryogenic pods are in a separate enclosure to the majority population. Only the robots have access to the other passengers, although there is an override protocol for emergencies. Your tasks are to check all terminals to make sure everything is running correctly, to review incident logs which vary from unusual robot behaviour to slow response times from equipment, to test various equipment to make sure it functions correctly, to monitor and make adjustments to climate and bio-system controls as necessary, to record a journal of personal experiences relating to the artificial gravity (achieved through a constant acceleration drive), to review the automatic course corrections, to ensure all external sensors are functioning correctly, and to maintain social relationships with your work colleagues. These tasks are shared between you and your colleagues.


I didn’t realize you were using a constant acceleration drive. If that’s the case you don’t actually need cryogenics because the passengers would arrive in 14 ship years. Well it would still be good to conserve resources and sanity but they wouldn’t be sleeping for thousands of years.


Wouldn’t cryo help with conserving resources though? At the very least the resources it conserves even for 14-15 shipboard years would be food, oxygen and living space on the ship.


Well that sounds like a major potential spanner in the works. On the off-chance there are some astrophysicists here, can anyone explain how this works and if it is accurate?
How is it possible to travel a distance of 1200 light years in what feels like just 14 years when you are travelling slower than the speed of light? Also, what are the numbers to place in the equation.

s = acosh(gx + 1)/g

I’m guessing that s is distance, a acceleration, g is 9.8m/s
Correct me if I’m wrong, too - just trying to get my head around it.

Assuming this is all right then I need a major rethink of how this is going to work for the game - just as well I haven’t published Evacuation yet! I’m thinking I will need to reduce acceleration to 0.1g or remove it entirely, then switch to a rotating ship to great gravity. Not ideal but it will work.

Edit: Okay, now I will keep constant acceleration, but it’s being reduced to around 1/500g. That will give a feeling of the original 1300 years to the passengers (actually, it’s closer to 1400, but I’m taking artistic license here). I’ll also change the ship to rotating for artificial gravity - we’re back to my original idea from 2013!

Edit2: Thanks for pointing this out, @cascat07 - Pretty good timing as it’s still easy to change!


You’re welcome. It also brings us down a bit from theoretical physics and technology territory. If we can constantly accelerate that’s also means humans have unlocked the secrets to infinite energy, which might make colonization it bit too easy for plot purposes.

We only know about this formula through speculative math from Einstein. I expect even if we could go that fast bumping into say hydrogen atoms would causing miniature nuclear explosions. It also causes mind bending disconnect when you try to imagine how the passage of time is based on perspective and velocity.

I recommend the new drive fire in short bursts and that is part of what you need the crew to wake up and monitor.


For simplicity of writing, I’m going to go with a negligible constant of acceleration of 1/500g (negligible in the sense of gravitational effect). That’s the equivalent of 70 metres per hour, which should be a smaller force than most friction, meaning that things are not randomly rolling to the back of the spaceship. That’s also a low enough acceleration that some sci-fi talk can explain away. (Fuel harvested from particles in the atmosphere, or something… excuse my scientific ignorance for now, but rest assured, I will research this!)