Notch's next game, a space adventure modeled after the retro trading game Elite, finally has a name, and it appears the Minecraft creator hasn't learned from his past experiences. Or else he just likes dancing on a knife's edge (we always thought he seemed like a dangerous type).
Mars Effect seems designed to draw the ire of EA and BioWare, and rightfully soâ€”even the logo could easily be mistaken for Mass Effect's. It was just a few weeks ago when Notch and Bethesda announced that they'd settled over the use of the word Scrolls in a game's title, because of Bethesda's series The Elder Scrolls. Notch seemed relieved at the time, though now he appears to be purposely tempting the powers that be.
The game's new official site says they hope to include "waist high walls" and "a game ending that makes sense," among the more serious "hard science fiction", "space battles against the AI or other players", "abandoned ships full of loot", "seamlessly landing on planets", "advanced economy system", and "mining, trading and looting."
"After several weeks of trying to come up with a good name for the game, we finally decided not to learn from previous experiences and pick a name that's already kind of in use by a huge existing franchise," writes Notch. "After playing around with names like 'Elight', 'Wind Commander', and 'Steve Online', we finally settled on the very catchy name 'Mars Effect'."
He also mentions that your ship will have a fixed power output, and activating advanced systems like a cloaking field will necessitate shutting off other systems, like lights and computers. Each ship is also equipped with "a fully functioning emulated 16 bit CPU that can be used to control your entire ship, or just to play games on while waiting for a large mining operation to finish."
Think EA and BioWare will have a sense of humor about Mars Effect? Just happy to get a new game from the mind of Notch? Let us know in the comments or on Twitter.
Update: Apparently this is probably an April Fool's Day joke, although some of the elements said to be in Mars Effect will likely make it into the actual game, whatever it may be called. To be fair, it's not April Fool's Day here yet. We had our guard down.