I’ve been on a video game kick lately, diving back into the Civilization games and listening to a lot of the Gaming Historian on YouTube. As such, it seemed like a good time to look back at another video game post, one about the planet simulator SimEarth.
SimEarth was one of those games that I found instantly appealing—a massive simulator of an entire planet, going through all its geological, biological, and civilizational phases. Even growing up in a household that rejected the theory of Darwinian evolution (a theory I still don’t accept, although I acknowledge that adaptation and mutation are both possible and happen frequently), the prevailing scientific understanding of our world made for a fun video game.
The possibilities were endless. Want to be a Deistic god and let the world run on its own? Go for it. Want to interfere frequently in your planet’s development? Do it! Want to make starfish or Venus fly traps sentient beings capable of forging an advanced civilization? Why not!
I used to be able to make pretty compelling planets in this game, with rich histories and multiple species in succession rising to sentience, before heading off an intergalactic journey of the stars. Apparently, I lost any skills I had, as my last game a couple of years ago (detailed below) ended in nuclear winter. Oops.
With that, here is 27 May 2020’s “SimEarth“: