Create & destroy on an unimaginable scale... with a space simulator that merges real-time gravity, climate, collision, and material interactions to reveal the beauty of our universe and the fragility of our planet. Now includes VR support for Vive and Oculus Rift+Touch.
Recent Reviews:
Very Positive (159) - 91% of the 159 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
All Reviews:
Very Positive (4,084) - 93% of the 4,084 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date:
Aug 24, 2015
Developer:
Publisher:

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Early Access Game

Get instant access and start playing; get involved with this game as it develops.

Note: This Early Access game is not complete and may or may not change further. If you are not excited to play this game in its current state, then you should wait to see if the game progresses further in development. Learn more

What the developers have to say:

Why Early Access?

“Universe Sandbox ² is in active development, but it's already a fully-featured, stable, and smooth-running space simulator. And it now officially supports VR with an HTC Vive or Oculus Rift+Touch.

We're proud of what we have to show, and we know many fans are eager to explore and experiment with the universe.

We're constantly working on features, improvements, and bug fixes, and we release frequent updates.”

Approximately how long will this game be in Early Access?

“It's hard to give an accurate estimate. Building a universe simulator is a job that's never complete.

We have a long list of features and improvements that we're very excited about implementing, and which will keep us busy for a long time to come.”

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

“Some of the features and improvements we'd like to add:
  • Space megastructures
  • Basic life simulation
  • More dynamic terraforming & improved climate simulation
  • Better collisions on a wider range of scales
  • Missions and objectives
  • Steam Workshop support
  • Achievements
  • Language localization
  • Improved human scale mode
  • More intuitive VR experience with features equal to desktop version

What is the current state of the Early Access version?

“Universe Sandbox ² has been in development for almost five years, and for the past two years, we've had users pouring hours into testing, exploring, and enjoying the sandbox. It is already a fully-featured, stable, and smooth-running simulator.

We've fixed most of the serious issues and have made a lot of progress on optimizations for a range of hardware. Because it is a large-scale sandbox, though, it does have its share of bugs and could use polish in some areas.

The VR version of Universe Sandbox ² is a more recent update, and we are working on adding more features and functionality to match the amount of control and fine-tuning that is possible in the desktop version.”

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

“The price will probably increase once Universe Sandbox ² leaves Early Access.”

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

“We actively seek community feedback from the in-game feedback as well as from our forums and social media.

Community feedback helps us prioritize our long list of planned features and focus on fixing the worst bugs and issues. We make an effort to address every issue that comes our way.

We also add simulations and features based on community requests, like the recent addition of custom-colored planets, and an index for the likelihood of life on planets. We also recently added a tool for easily recording and sharing GIFs on social media.

We are actively working on Steam Workshop support, which will open up doors to community-created simulations. Further down the line, we plan to also support sharing of custom models and textures.”
Read more

Buy Universe Sandbox ²

 

Recent updates View all (44)

January 12

2017 Retrospective


2017 was another great year for Universe Sandbox ². Our big milestone was Update 20, which – as we explained in our announcement – replaced the whole foundation for Universe Sandbox ² and opened up tons of new possibilities. We also launched on the Oculus Store, expanded our team, and continued to see positive reviews pour in. Our sales once again surpassed our expectations, which has helped in our team expansion and keeps us looking forward to a long list of great features and improvements.

It may not have been the flashiest development year for us, but what we accomplished was extremely important and we're very proud. Plus we expect some flashy stuff to arrive soon enough.

Here's a look at our achievements in 2017 by the numbers:

3
# of new spacecraft models.

Find them in Add > Objects:
  • Voyager 1 & 2
  • Arrival
  • Cassini

4
# of team members who joined us on our journey to build the universe.

Warm welcomes to:
  • Mat | Quality Assurance
  • Jacob | VR Developer
  • Barry | Graphics Developer
  • Erika | Astrophysicist, Climate & Simulation Developer

9
# of significant updates to Universe Sandbox ².
  • Prettier Moons & Bug Fixes | Alpha 19.5 | February 08, 2017
  • TRAPPIST-1 & the Seven Planets | Alpha 19.6 | February 23, 2017
  • Voyager & Two Icy Moons | Alpha 19.7 | April 19, 2017
  • A New Foundation & VR 2.0 | Update 20 | June 22, 2017
  • Total Solar Eclipse | Update 20.1 | August 14, 2017
  • Ciao, Cassini | Update 20.2 | September 14, 2017
  • A New Exoplanet & Interstellar Messenger | Update 20.3 | November 21, 2017
  • Oculus Store Launch | Update 20.3.1 | December 7, 2017
  • Scales & Scholars | Update 20.4 | December 21, 2017

12
# of new & improved textures.
  • Ganymede
  • The Moon
  • Mimas
  • Enceladus
  • Callisto
  • Rhea
  • Titan
  • Dione
  • Iapetus
  • Tethys
  • Vesta
  • Mercury



26
# of new simulations.

This year we made an effort to add even more simulations for historical and current astronomical events. Explore the newly announced exoplanets in the TRAPPIST-1 and Ross 128 sims; watch 2012 TC4 and Apophis skim past Earth; and say hello to our first known interstellar visitor, 'Oumuamua, and goodbye to Cassini, the spacecraft that illuminated Saturn.
  • 2 TRAPPIST-1 sims
  • 2 Vsauce sims
  • 3 Total Solar Eclipse sims
  • 7 Voyager 1 & 2 sims
  • 2012 TC4 passes Earth on October 12, 2017
  • Cassini's Collision with Saturn
  • Potentially Hazardous Asteroids
  • 400 Nearest Stars
  • Ross 128 with Earth-sized Planet
  • Just Chariklo
  • 'Oumuamua in 2017
  • Solar System - Now & Real Time
  • Planets Between the Earth & Moon
  • Apophis Encounters Earth in 2029
  • Earth’s Most Stable Quasi-Satellite, 2016 HO3
  • Solar System Planet Comparison



35
# of pages of release notes for Universe Sandbox ² updates in 2017.

Check out What’s New.

587
Highest # of concurrent users in Universe Sandbox ² in 2017 (happened on December 25).

This isn't quite as many as our all-time high in March 2016 (our first big sale after our launch on Steam the summer before), but it's the highest since. We're happy to see that we continue to bring in new players and keep our fans coming back for more.

1,008
# of tasks closed in our task management system.

Tasks keep track of all the bugs we want to fix and the improvements and features we want to add, as well as higher level goals like design work and ideas we want to explore. Once we complete whatever the task asked for, like fixing a bug, we pass it on for approval to Mat, our QA, then close it and move onto the next task.

1,186
# of positive Steam reviews of Universe Sandbox ² written in 2017.



1,413
# of new tasks opened in our task management system.

While it would have been nice to close a task each time we opened a new one, it’s unfortunately easier, generally speaking, to imagine an improvement or feature than it is to implement it, and it’s easier to spot a bug than it is to fix it. Development on other games may look a bit different, but with Universe Sandbox ², we don’t hesitate to write down any idea that comes our way. We still focus our efforts toward specific milestones, but at the same time, we don’t stop ourselves from dreaming up a development road that goes past the horizon.

3,673
# of commits made to our project.

A commit is essentially a package of code changes that a team member adds to the project. It could include one small change, like adding a parenthesis, or it could include hundreds of lines of code.

>100,000
# of copies sold on Steam and other platforms.

Or, on average, one copy sold every five minutes.

5,361,590
# of views of Vsauce's Which Way Is Down video featuring Universe Sandbox ².

Universe Sandbox ² is used (starting at 45 seconds in) as part of an exploration into how gravity works. We're big fans of Vsauce and were super happy to see Universe Sandbox ² in one of their videos. The icing on the cake: when Michael said "This simulator will blow your mind. I love it."



18,472,265
# of views in 2017 of all YouTube videos specifically about Universe Sandbox ².

(Take this number with a grain of salt. It’s hard to say how accurate this value is from SteamSpy, but it’s a fun number regardless! And this doesn’t even include the above 5+ million views from the Vsauce video.)

What's Next?
What we don't see in the list above is all of the work we did in 2017 that has yet to be released. There's a lot of it. Planet grids, lasers, Steam Workshop, localization, stellar evolution, and on and on. Check out our roadmap from last year to get an idea of what we're working on.

We're moving closer to our next big release, Update 21, and we're excited to show off what we've been doing. Once Update 21 has come and gone, we'll share a new roadmap for 2018 that we expect will be no less exciting than last year's. Stay tuned! And as always, thanks to all our fans for joining us on this cosmic journey. Your continued support and enthusiasm make all of this possible.
16 comments Read more

December 21, 2017

Scales & Scholars | Update 20.4


 
Update 20.4 features five new simulations:
  • Check out our Solar System in its current state in real time
  • Cram all of the planets between the Earth and Moon (see clip above)
  • See the asteroid Apophis's close call with our planet in 2029
  • Spend some time with Earth’s companion, 2016 HO3
  • Explore the scale of the planets in our Solar System
This update also features tons of new descriptions so you can learn more about the astronomy, physics, and history of the simulations.

There is also a new texture for the minor planet Vesta.

Check out the full list of What’s New in Update 20.4.

We are still hard at work on our next big release, Update 21 (see roadmap). Stay tuned after the New Year for more information.

Happy Holidays!
40 comments Read more
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About This Game

Universe Sandbox ² is a physics-based space simulator that allows you to create, destroy, and interact on an unimaginable scale.

It merges real-time gravity, climate, collision, and material interactions to reveal the beauty of our universe and the fragility of our planet. Universe Sandbox ² is the long-awaited sequel to the original Universe Sandbox.

Universe Sandbox ² includes the desktop version and a VR mode with support for the HTC Vive & Oculus Rift+Touch. This is a free, automatic update.

Simulate Gravity

N-body simulation at almost any speed using Newtonian mechanics. Real science, real physics, no supercomputer required.

Collide Planets & Stars

Epic, mind blowing collisions of massive planetary bodies.

Model Earth's Climate

Watch sea ice grow and recede with the seasons because of the tilt of the Earth: change the tilt and change the seasons. Or move the Earth farther from the Sun and freeze the entire planet.
Learn more...

Terraform Planets

Add carbon dioxide to a planet's atmosphere to heat it up. Then add water...

Deform Surfaces

Impact planets with asteroids and comets and leave behind massive, molten craters.

Supernova a Star

Make a star evolve by cranking up its age or mass, then watch a supernova unfold.

And more...

  • Historical simulations - ride along with Juno, New Horizons, & other spacecraft
  • Material System - build planets out of Hydrogen, Iron, Rock, & Water
  • Solar flares & volatile trails
  • Procedurally generated stars & planets
  • Pulsars
  • Light-warping black holes
  • Dark matter

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    Minimum:
    • Processor: 1.6GHz dual-core
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 512 MB Video Memory, Shader Model 3.0
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Storage: 2 GB available space
    Recommended:
    • Processor: 2.6GHz quad-core
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 1 GB Video Memory
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Additional Notes: For VR, see recommendations from Vive or Oculus
    Minimum:
    • OS: OS X 10.9+
    • Processor: 1.6GHz dual core
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: OpenGL, 512 MB Video Memory, Shader Model 3.0
    • Storage: 1 GB available space
    Minimum:
    • Processor: 1.6GHz dual core
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: OpenGL, 512 MB Video Memory, Shader Model 3.0
    • Storage: 1 GB available space
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