So I couldn’t resist this one. Reentry is a spaceship simulator for the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo space flights. Its aim is for full switch fidelity, using the exact procedures they used in the 60’s during those space programs.
As you can see from the welcome message, it’s a one man show and clearly a labor of love, so happy to see some money go to someone with a love for all things spaceflight.
Ok, let’s check out the menu of toys - will there be an accurate count of how many 7/11’s you get in orbit?
An Academy, a Campaign ‘A Bridge to the Moon’ and some missions, both historical and freeplay - and for early access looks pretty good so far:
Let’s get my Freedom 7 Al Shepard hat on, and give this a go:
Ok, let’s dive in completely unburdened by either knowledge or training. Hey, they know my name - I’m qualified!
Let’s light this guy up!
Documentation to read, I love it!
You bring up the mission pad, and then pick a procedure. For the Freedom 7 we’re doing a quick one, so it’s at the 5 mins prelaunch Final Checklist point. The sim can be set to ‘Run’ the checklist (top right in the screenshot below), and then it lights up the buttons for me to press. Perhaps they should have sent a chimp?
You essentially get a free camera inside the cramped cockpit, and can move around with the cursor keys or the mouse wheel to zoom or free look. It’s sort of like the FSX or X-Plane view controls. You also get a handy (and hideable) ‘view selection’ for jumping between positions quickly (handy in multi-crew capsules I imagine).
Aargh, OK, taking screenshots plus during the countdown is stressful, as no pause button that doesn’t hide the screen (so I can take screenshots). 30 seconds till ignition!
Ok, We’re off!
During key stages of the liftout you hear the actual NASA recordings of the call-outs. I have actually no idea if my oxygen is ok, but it’s probably on here somewhere.
Hmm, it’s looking pretty dark out there. Also, on the way up it’s pretty shaky and vibrating hard so difficult to read the gauges.
The Mercury capsule has a window plus a ‘periscope’ for Earth observations. I bumble my way through the checklists to find out how to open it.
You get all sorts of external and orbital views.
Oh, uh. A test. Apparently I have to try out some manual maneuvers using the RCS system. In theory I would know the controls for those by now. Strangely, bringing up the Settings/Controls page doesn’t actually pause the sim, so I button mash. The Right Stuff indeed!
Ok, Houston, can you repeat the last transmission. Without math this time please.
Houston not so impressed. Activity cancelled!
I have to rush through the retro burn, retro eject checklists, trying to take screenshots on the fly. I fail to to take any on re-entry, so just imagine a lot of fire and orange please. Remember the saying, ‘Aviate, navigate, communicate, screenshots’, in that order.
I really think I missed a step. It’s great the landing bags are out, but a main parachute would be ideal soon. Hmm, which switch?
Mains! Hooray - Freedom 7 lives!
Ok, guys, come pick me up. Do I get a tour of the USS Lake Champlain, as I love my carriers?
So, my school report. Not good. Plus pretty sure that periscope isn’t meant to be out still.
But I lived! The first frog in space - book it!
Ok, so now I’m qualified for the Apollo Command Capsule, right? Hmm, it does seem to have a few more buttons
Now off for some reading. Loving it so far!