Everspace 2 to feature planet exploration

Everspace 2
Everspace 2 (Image credit: Rockfish Games)

Everspace 2

Source: Rockfish Games (Image credit: Source: Rockfish Games)

What you need to know

  • Everspace is a popular space shooter available on Xbox Game Pass.
  • The developer recently revealed a new open-world game.
  • Everspace 2 is coming to Xbox One in 2021, but it may be delayed due to coronavirus.
  • You can purchase Xbox Game Pass through Amazon.

Recently at Gamescom 2019, Rockfish Games, the creators of Everspace, announced Everspace 2. Unlike the rogue-like prequel, this game is an open-world space shooter with classic role-playing elements and persistent player progression. Everspace 2 is coming to Steam Early Access in December and should hit Xbox One in 2021. However, this timeline may change given the coronavirus outbreak.

While Everspace was a good experience, it didn't allow you to explore planets. Luckily, Everspace 2 fixes that. Today, a press release Windows Central received said the following. It discusses the benefits of having preset planets instead of procedural generation.

Being able to explore new and strange planets has always been one of the biggest dreams for many space game enthusiasts. In space simulations, where exploration for hundreds or even thousands of hours is the main pillar of the game, there is no way around procedural world generation, and we've already seen some great examples for this concept. However, there are some fundamental downsides to it. For starters, working with high-quality, pre-baked global illumination solutions in procedurally-generated environments is not possible, especially if the game world is truly seamless. Secondly, game designers have much less control over gameplay and environmental design in procedurally-generated game worlds, which only gets worse when trying to implement a proper story campaign, featuring cutscenes and scripted events. In fact, we spent a lot of effort and time managing randomization and player frustration in the original Everspace. Since we dropped the roguelike formula in favor of a persistent open world with fixed handcrafted locations in Everspace 2, we can now take the overall experience to a whole new level, especially on planet locations... However, having handcrafted planetary locations with super... height maps, high-quality illumination solutions, large setpieces featuring lots of surface details as well as lots of interesting activities going on in the sky and on the ground, comes at a price: They not only take a lot of time and effort to create, they are also very memory-heavy... What it means though is that we're not able to implement a large number of explorable planets, rather, we're focusing on a few that are most important to the story and the overall game experience. Also, there is no way around the fact that these sections will impact load times by a few extra seconds but hey, we like to think seamless atmospheric descending is totally overrated anyway.

It's a shame there won't be endless planets like No Man's Sky, but quality is better than quantity. We can't wait to get our hands on Everspace 2 later this year, and can't wait to see how it looks on the Xbox Series X.

Asher Madan

Asher Madan handles gaming news for Windows Central. Before joining Windows Central in 2017, Asher worked for a number of different gaming outlets. He has a background in medical science and is passionate about all forms of entertainment, cooking, and antiquing.