Elite Dangerous developer, Frontier Developments, wants to make sure that their game will get an absolute spot-on simulation of how Pluto and its moon Charon will look in 3301. This was stated in the latest news letter released by the developer.
Pluto will have experienced exactly “five more orbits and five more heating/cooling cycles between today and the era of Elite: Dangerous,” so the developer is stating that they are taking into consideration NASA’s latest images of Pluto and its moon through their New Horizons probe.
“The pictures reveal the way Pluto’s various ices have melted and reformed, likely due to tidal heating from gravitational interaction with Charon. “The statement reads. “[This} which means around five more orbits and five more heating/cooling cycles between today and the era of Elite: Dangerous,”
“It’s possible the renewed surface [the heart-shaped spot on Pluto] could spread to cover the entire body by 3301.”
Assistant Art Director Jon Bottone said they try their best to simulate the actual thing by reading real world statistics and images and try to predict and simulate the planet or moon’s condition in 3301. Although for the Earth and the other near planets and moons’, the developer uses “real height map data.”
“We use real world data whenever it’s available to make objects as real as we can make them,” says Bottone. “With a few exceptions, the surfaces you see are derived from the custom simulation based on things like the distance from the star and Newton’s second law”
“In the case of Earth and our terraformed Mars, we’ve used real height map data, simulated the levels of the oceans and added life to the surface in order to make the geography as accurate as we can make it. Those height maps are invaluable to making familiar planets look real, and if NASA is able to release that data for Pluto and Charon – or any other planetary body –we should be able to incorporate that in the future too.”
Elite Dangerous will launch later this year for Xbox One and PS4.