Fans of high-concept science fiction rejoice! Reports are hitting the interwebs that infamous Minecraft mastermind Markus "Notch" Persson is in the early stages of launching a new game titled 0x10c. The game will be launched à la Minecraft, an early beta with lots of opportunity for feedback from players to the game's creators. According to the man himself, it will also be a "hard science fiction" game (keep your minds out of the gutters, guys), meaning that it'll hew as closely to real science as it can. To wit, a description of 0x10c's background from the game's website:
In a parallel universe where the space race never ended, space travel was gaining popularity amongst corporations and rich individuals.
In 1988, a brand new deep sleep cell was released, compatible with all popular 16 bit computers. Unfortunately, it used big endian, whereas the DCPU-16 specifications called for little endian. This led to a severe bug in the included drivers, causing a requested sleep of 0x0000 0000 0000 0001 years to last for 0x0001 0000 0000 0000 years.
It's now the year 281 474 976 712 644 AD, and the first lost people are starting to wake up to a universe on the brink of extinction, with all remote galaxies forever lost to red shift, star formation long since ended, and massive black holes dominating the galaxy.
From the site's description of the game, it appears that players will be based on these ships, each of which will have a limited amount of power. This means you will have to think seriously about what functions you have up-and-running on your ship - a fancy cloaking device may eat up so much wattage that you have to shut off other functions to turn it on. Gameplay will include space battles, mining, trading, and "seamlessly" landing on and taking off from planets (I don't know about you, but that idea makes me geek out more than a little). Further, the computer on your ship will be a "fully functioning emulated 16 bit CPU" that you'll use to control your ship and/or play games in-game.
The game will take place in an MMO multiverse, and while the single-player game will have a one-time cost only, playing in the multiverse will involve some sort of recurring fee.
We'll have more about the game as it's announced.