Tellus: Save the Earth is a resource management simulation that challenges players to improve the quality of life for all Earth’s inhabitants. This is achieved through research and development in five key areas: energy, production (industry & food), health, ecological awareness, and earth observation.

Winner of SAVEEARTHGAME Playable Game Design Competition sponsored by the IEEE Committee on earth observation and Digipen.

Tellus is an interesting game that I got promoted to lead designer on in the fall of 2011 shortly after my internship. It’s a mix of Sim Earth with an emphasis on earth observation technology. Your primary goal isn’t to get the most money or be the best leader, but to increase the quality of life on earth over a 40 year period staring form 2010 to 2050. The world is split up into 19 regions and each region starts with a representation what it is in real life, all the way down to the technology that that region actually has.

Most of the design work I did on this game is based on portraying real events and processes that accurately represent what the current world works. It includes such things as research timers and defining the stats on each building so that it accurately models the way real world works. I also helped create the prefabs for the newer water-based buildings that were created to provide more balanced set of options for players. Since most of the world’s population lives near a coast line this is an area where we expect to see much development in the future. More recent design work is helping to develop a real time event system that will cause random disasters (tornados, hurricanes, etc.) and boons such as research breakthroughs and social movements in the different regions. These will result in stat loss/gain, building destruction or increased bonuses to the effected region.

Buildings include:

All current Aquafactories (Oil Platform and Deep Sea Mining) and Aquaculture (Aquaculture and Advanced Aquaculture)

Revamped coal plant with a brand new model.

There’s still plenty that I want to add to this game to make it more engaging. This game has plenty of potential as our creative director/instructor David Wessman has been in talks with an earth observation specialist that was a reward from the SAVETHEEARTH prize package as well as members of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy.