Universe Sandbox ² Featured in Vsauce Video

Friday, November 3rd: We’ve released Updates 20.2.3 and 20.2.4, which add two sims from this Vsauce video as well as a few improvements and bug fixes. See the sims in Home > Open.

Hey, did you hear that? Michael from Vsauce just gave some high praise of Universe Sandbox ²: “This simulator will blow your mind. I love it.”

Vsauce is a science and education YouTube channel that has attracted over 12.5 million subscribers with “videos that feed the curious and illuminate the amazing.”

We’re very honored and humbled to be featured in their latest video! Check it out below.


For the latest Universe Sandbox ² news, follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

Universe Sandbox ² GIF Contest

Update December 16: Contest Closed!

Thanks everyone for your submissions! We will be announcing the winner in the next couple of weeks. 


So it’s clear at this point that you all love blowing up planets. But now we want to see exactly how you blow up planets.

Which is why we’re having a Universe Sandbox ² GIF contest!

Submit your GIF before midnight PST, Thursday, December 15, and you’ll be considered for the Grand Prize: a $50 Steam gift card and shoutouts on our social media. Please see below for full instructions on how to submit a GIF. 

Of course, you don’t have to show us exploding planets. We love to see how our fans explore and utilize all of the tools and features in Universe Sandbox ². Be creative. So how do you submit a GIF for the contest? Easy!

How to Submit a GIF via Facebook or Twitter

  1. Open Universe Sandbox ² and start colliding planets (or delicately balancing orbits)
  2. Record your GIF (press F9 to Start/Stop, or click Video > Start/Stop Video Capture)
  3. Click Share once the GIF is processed
  4. After it’s done uploading, select either Share on Facebook or Tweet (alternatively, select Copy URL to Clipboard and manually share on Facebook or Twitter)
  5. Your Tweet/Facebook post MUST be public and MUST include the #UniverseSandbox hashtag in order to be considered for the contest! (If you’re sharing on Facebook, you will have to add #UniverseSandbox yourself; it is automatically included in Tweets)

How to Submit a GIF via Steam

  1. Open Universe Sandbox ² and start colliding planets (or delicately balancing orbits)
  2. Record your GIF (press F9 to Start/Stop, or click Video > Start/Stop Video Capture)
  3. Click Video > Open Video Folder to show where the GIFs are stored on your computer
  4. Upload your GIF to the Universe Sandbox ² Artwork page, no Facebook or Twitter necessary
  5. Visibility MUST be set to Public and it MUST be uploaded to the Community Hub, not your profile

Happy GIFing!

More Love for Universe Sandbox ² VR

Universe Sandbox ² - Earth Explosion VR

When we began work on the VR mode for Universe Sandbox ² at the end of last year, we weren’t really sure how it would turn out, or what people would think of it.

Now, a few months after our VR launch, the picture is a bit more clear: Universe Sandbox ² in VR is awesome, and people love it.

That may sound like it needs a dose of modesty, but take a look at what people are saying below. Space is a great setting for experiencing the sense of scale that VR allows, and a number of users have talked about the wonder (and sometimes dread) that comes with floating next to a true-to-scale Sun. Quite a few users have even said that Universe Sandbox ² has been their best VR experience. But again, no need to take our word for it.

The first Tweet here is from Dean Hall, the creator of DayZ.


Ctrl V is a VR arcade opening up in Canada very soon, for those who’d like to try out VR before purchasing their own headsets. Universe Sandbox ² will be one of the titles available in their libraries. The team at Ctrl V recently tried out Universe Sandbox ² for the first time and sent us this wonderful email:

We here at Ctrl V, are speechless… This game is phenomenal on so many levels. The level of detail and customization available exceeded all of our expectations.

Everyone on our team has both tested, loved, and gotten completely lost in the beauty of this game.

We had never anticipated that a non-shooting VR game would steal the spotlight, but your wizardry has managed to do just that.

— Ryan from Ctrl V


Steam Reviews

This is just a selection of Steam reviews which have praised the VR mode in Universe Sandbox ². It’s impossible to capture them all, because they keep rolling in every day.


…this is the most unbelievable experience you will ever have, VR or otherwise. […] You will not come back from this experience the same. You’ve been warned.

— Brutalface, Steam review

This is perfect for VR. […] If you have VR, you know that some things just make you smile and laugh a little because something cool just happened. This happened almost constantly with this game.

Of all the VR games/Experiences I have (which is pretty much all of them) this is at the top of my list. Get it!!!

— JeffyThanatos, Steam review

Universe Sandbox ² - Uranus VR

I’m a grown man and I literally shed tears when I stood next to Earth spinning peacefully in the vastness of space and looked back at our life-giving Sun so far away and yet so close.

A breathtaking experience for anyone even slightly interested in space exploration.

VR is a must. Completely changes the experience.

— Milo.[HUN], Steam review

My mind was sufficiently blown the first time I entered Universe Sandbox ² in VR. It remains so every time I reboot.

— Shark, Steam review

This on the HTC Vive is the most amazing thing I’ve ever experienced. The absolute scale of the universe and the accurate depiction of our solar system is totally awe-inspiring. Words, videos or pictures don’t do it justice. It has to be experienced to fully understand how awesome this is.

— stareye2004, Steam review

Played in VR on the HTC Vive and the sense of scale was incredible. I played around with a couple of stars the size of my fist, trying to get them into a binary orbit, but I accidentally collided them and then *boom* my entire room filled with a massive explosion that I was just a speck inside. Just incredible.

— shazow, Steam review

Universe Sandbox ² - Planets VR

Sooooo great with HTC VIVE… One of the best experiences in virtual reality. I usually play it lying on the floor… Love the Big supernovas once you make two stars explode.

— navalguijo, Steam review

Wow… Incredible with HTC VIVE… A complete fantastic submersion in space dynamics. One of the best experiences in virtual reality!

— bilbo.deforce, Steam review

After more intense and exhausting room-scale sessions wear me down this is what I’ve came back to for end of the night relaxation. I’ll sit in the middle of my VR space and mellow out to the beautiful soundtrack and play with the fabric of creation. Pretty damn cool.

— dixon.jonathan, Steam review

One of the most amazing things I’ve witnessed in VR.

— d e s u, Steam review

Incredible in VR, must buy if you have a Vive. Great soundtrack. Developers continue to push out amazing updates for virtual reality.

— iaqo_dan, Steam review

If you don’t have VR, don’t worry, we’re still developing the desktop version of Universe Sandbox ² and expect to release Alpha 19 soon, which will feature some really awesome new Roche limit and tidal heating effects. If you’re itching to try this out, you can opt into a preview version of Alpha 19. Learn more here: Alpha 19 Preview.

Feeling the Love for Universe Sandbox ²

Since our release on Steam Early Access two weeks ago, we’ve been seeing new videos and articles about Universe Sandbox ² every day.

But even better than the huge increase in exposure is seeing how much people are enjoying it. We appreciate each and every YouTube video and write-up that features Universe Sandbox ², but we can’t mention them all, so here’s a short list of some of our favorites.


Nerd³ made the most popular YouTube video about the original Universe Sandbox, and now he’s back to experiment with Earth in Universe Sandbox ². He “fixes” its axis, floods every continent, then hurls it toward the sun.

This is one of the more recent videos in ZeRoyalViking’s series on Universe Sandbox ².  We had the pleasure of chatting with him in person at PAX Prime last week. Looking forward to seeing his future videos!


Have you heard of PewDiePie? No? He only has a small following on YouTube, with over 39 million subscribers. What does he have to say about Universe Sandbox ²? “This game is so ******* cool.”


Jacksepticeye, “the most energetic video game commentator on YouTube,” had nothing but good things to say about Universe Sandbox ²: “I just love this stuff. I could explore this game alllll day.” Jacksepticeye has almost 6.5 million subscribers, and right now this video is the most watched Universe Sandbox ² YouTube video with over 2.1 million views.


And this is one of our personal favorites — Justin and Griffin from Polygon have a blast playing through Universe Sandbox ² for the first time.


Rock Paper Shotgun:  Premature Evaluation: Universe Sandbox 2

In this Early Access review from Rock Paper Shotgun, one of the most popular sources for indie game news and reviews, Marsh Davies writes: “It’s easy to use, beautifully tutorialised, and hugely fascinating.”

Kotaku: Universe Sandbox 2 Lets You Build, Destroy The Universe

My favorite quote from this write-up, published shortly after our launch on Steam Early Access: “Within a minute of booting it up, I’d already smashed Earth into a second, identical Earth and watched both erupt into flame, blossom thousands of tiny volcanic flowers. ‘That escalated quickly,’ I said, realizing even as the words came out of my mouth that it was an understatement.”

Geek DadMy Top 10 Indie Games at PAX Prime 2015, Part I

At PAX we were able to talk to Mike LeSauvage, contributor for Geek Dad. In this article about Universe Sandbox ², Mike writes: “This was the first game I tried out after PAX, and my kids became instantly enamored with it, with my eight-year-old declaring it to be more fun than Splatoon!”

Brash Games: Universe Sandbox ² Early Access Review

Dan Jackson writes, “This will leave you mesmerized only after 5 minutes of navigating the tutorial and once left to your own devices you will lose yourself in the vast expanse of our known galaxy. […] I highly recommend this to anyone with a similar interest or if you’re just curious to see how the universe works. You will not be disappointed.”





And to top it all off, here’s a humble recommendation from the writer and director of the films District 9 and Elysium, Neill Blomkamp:

Listen to an Inteview with Dan, Creator of Universe Sandbox, on The Zachtronics Podcast

Zachtronics Podcast

Dan sits down for an interview with Zach on The Zachtronics Podcast, a series which explores indie game development.

They start out by talking about the humble beginnings of Universe Sandbox a long time ago as Dan’s personal project throughout middle school and high school. Then they get into discussions about the ideas and passions driving the current development, the limitations which present interesting problems and require creative solutions, and the future of Universe Sandbox ².

Listen to the full interview at the Zachtronics website: The Zachtronics Podcast: Episode #4

Interviews From PAX Prime 2014

PAX Prime 2014 is long gone now, but we thought we’d share with you these interviews with Dan, creator and lead on Universe Sandbox ², in case you didn’t catch them back in September.

In the backgrounds of these videos from TimmyTechTV and GeekGamer.TV, you can see our booth and demos of Alpha 10 of Universe Sandbox ².

TimmyTechTV’s YouTube Channel

GeekGamer.TV’s YouTube Channel

We are now up to Alpha 12.1 of Universe Sandbox ².

Buy it now to get instant access to the Alpha through Steam as well as free updates up to and including the final release:

Screenshots from Universe Sandbox ² Users

While you patiently wait for Alpha 12 (available by the end of October), here’s a round of awesome screenshots from Universe Sandbox ² alpha testers.

Earth & 2000 Moons

Earth & 2000 Moons

High-Impact Collision

High-Impact Collision



Terraformed Mars

Terraformed Mars

US² - Rocky Planet with Rings

Rocky Planet with Rings
US² - Heated Planet After Collision

Heated Planet After Collision

Thanks to all those who have shared screenshots from their simulations in Universe Sandbox ².  You can see more on our forum.

For a preview of Alpha 12’s features, check out our previous blog post.

If you do not yet own Universe Sandbox ², buy it now to get instant access to the alpha and receive free updates up to and including the final release:


Scott Manley Simulating the Universe for Fun

Watch “Astronogamer” Scott Manley run through a series of simulations in Universe Sandbox ² as he discusses a bit of the science behind it all:

Thanks, Scott!

Remember, Universe Sandbox ² is still in alpha, so there are many fixes and improvements that are on their way.

Buy Universe Sandbox ² and get instant access to the alpha on Steam for Windows, Mac, and Linux and pre-order the finished game:

Universe Sandbox ² at PAX Prime 2014

We are very glad to announce we are showing Universe Sandbox ² next week at PAX Prime.

We’re joining more than 65 indie developers in the Indie MEGABOOTH from August 29th-September 1st here in Seattle, Washington, USA.

So if you’re going to be at PAX, make sure you swing by our booth. Universe Sandbox ² looks even more amazing on a gigantic TV.

If you aren’t lucky enough to be in Seattle with PAX tickets in your hand, don’t worry: The public alpha release of Universe Sandbox ² is only getting closer.

You can check out the full MEGABOOTH lineup here:

indiemegabooth logo

Universe Sandbox to exhibit at the WA Science Teacher Conference

We will be showing off Universe Sandbox 2 at the Washington State Science Teacher Conference on March 12-14, 2010.

I’m really excited about this opportunity.

This conference is organized by the WSTA (Washington Science Teacher Association).

The picture is of the AFSC booth at the WSTA 2007 conference.

This will be our first exhibition.