Though the well-known Steam game distribution platform that made it quite popular, Universe Sandbox is not exactly a game per se as it lacks many of the common elements for a typical game, like levels, bosses, progression, challenges, a requirement of certain skills, etc. It can be defined as an interactive digital toy, but its best definition is still “an astrophysics sandbox” where you can create and destroy planets, solar systems, galaxies, or even galaxy clusters.
The best thing about this application is that it lets you simulate interactions between astronomical objects or even entire galaxies with impressive complexity and thoroughness. Such aspects as trajectories, masses, gravity data, density, velocity, speed, spin, heat, etc. can be thoroughly controlled and accurately influence other parameters, just like in reality. Also, various stats and attributes are closely tracked as you change any parameters of the simulation.
Since it’s a physics-based simulator that offers a high degree of both accuracy and complexity, it’s a great educational tool suitable for teachers and students alike. With Universe Sandbox, you can learn new stuff and not just play around for hours with orbits and galaxies, though the gameplay part is, indeed, very entertaining due to its endless features.
Another nice thing about this tool is that its free version lets you explore any of the included simulations for as long as you want, and the premium features can be tried for free for 60 minutes. Therefore, you’ll have the possibility to clearly see for yourself how awesome Universe Sandbox is.
- Climate simulations and terraforming are also included in the latest version
- Free trial version available
- Very complex and thorough
- The menus of the interface could've been a bit more intuitive