Bohemia Interactive's Take On Mars is an exploration simulator where players can drive rovers around a realistic depiction of the red planet.
The simulator for Windows PC allows players to control rovers and landers on the surface of Mars while performing scientific analysis. Players will receive missions that require them to document what they see, analyze rocks, soil and atmosphere, assess radiation hazards for future colonies and determine the chemical composition of areas on the planet to see whether life can be supported.
Speaking to Polygon, Take On Mars' project lead, Martin Melicharek said the development team tried to simulate everything as realistically as possible so that those who are interested in Mars can learn more about the red planet while also enjoying the simulation. The development team modeled everything in the game using known data about Mars and its rovers, from the rovers themselves (the larger rover in the game is composed of 150 individual parts that exist in Curiosity, Spirit and Opportunity) to the planet's temperatures, air pressure, day/night cycles and time (the Martian day is 40 minutes longer than an Earth day). The Mars globe is even oriented according to the current Mars time, and if a rover gets stuck on some rocks or breaks a wheel, then the mission is over, just like it would be if such a thing happened in real life.
"It's definitely experimental," Melicharek told Polygon. "Lots of people have asked, 'Why this? It's doesn't seem like it would be very popular or appeal to many people,' but I think it's something on its own. Anyone who is interested in Mars will find this interesting."
Take On Mars will launch in late July, and free downloadable content will follow shortly to allow players to explore one of the moons of Mars. For more information, visit the game's website.