Series Info...Audience Participation

by Sam Witt
March 7, 2001

As we move closer to the date when Horizon Station will go live, I've decided to engage in a bit of shameless self-promotion.

So, what exactly is Horizon Station? At it's core, the game is about survival. It's about trying to make your way in a damaged world, struggling to put the pieces back together. It's about people and robots and aliens and their efforts to make peace – or war. It's about discovery and wonder, but it's also about horror and isolation.

There are a lot of things that I'm going to do with Horizon Station, some familiar, some pretty strange and innovative. I want to tell stories in this setting, but I also want to provide the tools and motivation for others to get in there and start telling tales, too.

The basis for Horizon Station is the idea of a lost space station, an exploration mission gone horribly wrong. Imagine a city floating in space, surrounded by a dense ring of asteroids. Now imagine that a few dozen of these asteroids plunged through the asteroid belt and knocked massive holes through our floating city. And there are some aliens out there, too, and they don't seem to be too friendly...

Interestingly enough, I'm not entirely sure what else the game will be about. I have some fairly extensive ideas written down, scattered across the hard drive of my laptop and scribbled down in the margins of my ever-present notebook, but these are only options for some of the things that could happen with this game. I, after all, am not going to be making all the decisions about how this plays out – you, the players will have a lot of input in that.

So how's that going to work? Horizon Station will not appear full-grown come April. It's going to come to you a piece at a time, starting with a series of Stages that will reveal more of the background of the Station. What happens during these stages will affect the future of the game, and the direction that it takes will be based in large part on what the players do (or don't do) during these early stories.

I'm going to do my best to maintain this concept through the evolution of Horizon Station, blending the choices and actions of the players into the overall scheme of things. No doubt it will be trickier than I envision, and I'm sure that there are some compromises that will have to be made, but I intend to heavily involve the player community in the development of this project. There's even something in the very first Stage that will... nah, that's a surprise I'll leave for those who take part in that story.

And there's no need to wait for Horizon Station to be up and running before you start making your voices heard. Use the link below to post in the MetaStatic forums, or email me.

In keeping with my theme of audience participation, I'm very interested in what readers have found interesting, boring, or just plain silly about this series of articles. Want to see more detail about Horizon Station? More articles about the relative value of wombat meat among the natives of New Zealand? If you want to see something different in this space, or you're a fan of more of the same, then tell me.

your opinion...