Online Manual

Open Space Mayhem (O.S.M.)
Version 0.1.0
Copyright © 2018 Big Green Star LLC





Welcome to Open Space Mayhem (a.k.a. “O.S.M.”), an open-universe 3d space adventure game. This version is an early alpha release.  The intent of the release is to let users experience the game earlier in its development.  This release supports limited functionality, as described more fully in later sections.  Gameplay is in one of the planned play modes, what’s being termed Surveyor Mode.






Note: Use of this software is governed by the end user license agreement in the file "EULA.pdf".  This agreement shall become effective upon installation of the software.  If the user does not agree to the terms of this, they should uninstall the software.  Please refer to the document "EULA.pdf" for terms of this agreement.

To install the software, first copy and unzip the download package in a folder of your choice.  Within the unzipped contents’ folder, double click the file [Installer Folder]"Installer\Install_game.bat".  To uninstall double click the file [Installer Folder]"Installer\Uninstall_game.bat", where [Installer Folder] is the folder the download package was unzipped into.

At present only Windows 7 (64-bit) and later is supported.




The gameplay mode supported by this release is called Surveyor Mode.  In this mode, the player has control of a single ship with significant upgrades in place for movement speed and is able to journey around space and look at objects.  Interaction with objects, beyond bumping into them, is not supported in Surveyor Mode.  The intent is for this mode to allow experiencing the larger game universe without first needing to earn upgrades to the player’s ship.  The plan is that this gameplay mode will continue to be enhanced beyond the early alpha release(s).  Other gameplay modes will be added in later releases.


Scope of Game

O.S.M. is an open-universe game.  The dimensions of the game universe are a cube roughly 11e+18 (11 billion billion) light years on each side.  The galaxy the player is in is a spherical galaxy about 1 million light years across containing over 5e+15 (5 million billion) stars.  At the top speed available in Surveyor Mode it would take almost 6 days to travel across the galaxy.  Currently there is just the one galaxy.

The galaxy is populated with stars, proto-stars, star clusters, binary (and more) star systems, planets, moons, asteroids.  Liberty was taken with the allowing of star colors outside what is observed or even possibly given current understandings of stellar physics.  But hey, I like green stars and the variety of other colors make for some exotic and beautiful vistas.  With 5 million billion stars, there’s a lot of variety.



Game Control

This release of the game only supports control through keyboard shortcuts.  Addition of menu-driven controls, including support to settings adjustment and game save/restore, is planned for addition in a later release.

Following is a list of supported keyboard controls.  The assignment of these is fixed in this release:

w,s,up,down:                       move up

d,a,right,left:                        move right

left/right shift,z:                   thrust (multiplier if ctrl pressed)

ctrl-g:                                     gear adjust

ctrl-s:                                     toggle sensor HUD

ctrl-1:                                     toggle auto slowdown

ctrl-n:                                     toggle navigation HUD

escape:                                  toggle off current (object list) HUD

ctrl-v:                                     viewpoint select

mouse-wheel:                      viewpoint distance change, changes to forward

                                               projection view when moved to small enough value

ctrl-c:                                     toggle crosshairs

ctrl-h:                                     toggle main HUD

ctrl-up:                                  move up in object list HUD

ctrl-down:                             move down in object list HUD

ctrl-0:                                     log current location

ctrl-o:                                    cycle object list/line-of-sight HUD configurations

ctrl-p/alt-p:                           HUD font size change

ctrl-r/alt-r:                             Rotate to selected object

ctrl-end:                                Barrel roll left

ctrl-PgDn:                             Barrel roll right

ctrl-Ins:                                  Toggle on/off autorighting

ctrl-b/alt-b:                           HUD brightness change

ctrl-m/alt-m:                         Move to selected object

ctrl-x:                                     exit game

ctrl-e:                                     Refresh sensor HUD (if displayed)

alt-e:                                      Toggle on/off regular refresh of sensor HUD (does

                                               initial display if not already displayed)

ctrl-k:                                     Toggle gravity

ctrl-j:                                      Toggle auto entry of orbit

ctrl-f/alt-f:                              Toggle follow of selected HUD object

alt-a:                                       Cancel orders

mouse-wheel:                       Changes viewpoint distance from player ship


When gravity is enabled all objects will begin orbiting about the object with the strongest gravitational influence.  Orbit is circular and direction is governed by the object’s forward direction at time orbit is started.  Orbit is entered instantaneously.  The player may alter their orbit direction by moving in a new direction.

If an object is followed prior to enabling gravity the player ship will pace that object through its orbit.  The player ship may maneuver while maintaining this pacing of the target object.

The ‘gear’ of the player ship governs how much acceleration and deceleration is applied when the control for these is pressed.  The lowest gear is 0 and acceleration/deceleration here is very small to allow maneuvering at close ranges.  The highest gear is 8 and used for interstellar movement speeds.




Game Files

Several game data files are kept in disk in editable/readable forms.  The intent is to facilitate user modification of these if desired (rather than requiring use of a ‘game editor’).  Currently modification is manual and without tools, or external documentation.  It is planned that future releases of the game will add tools and documentation for the modification of these.

Files are in the folder “C:\osm\game_data”.  Currently this is a fixed location.

Below is the list of editable game files:

  • Initial_Game_Data.txt: Governs non-random objects in game.
  • Navigation_Point_Data.txt: Populates the navigation list HUD
  • Ship_Scaling_Data.txt: Governs ship scaling and position adjustment.
  • Logged_Location.txt: Logged coordinates saved here
  • Object_Group_Data.txt: Governs groupings of meshes.
  • Saved_Game_Data__Current.txt: Not currently used. Game currently always restarts to same state as specified in “Initial_Game_Data.txt”

Note: If the user decides to modify any of these please be aware that the game can easily be destabilized through changes to these files.  There is virtually no error reporting exposed.  It is recommended that a backup of the data be made prior to any modifications.  As a convenience in restoring these files, the original contents of “C:\osm\game_data” may be retrieved from the folder “C:\osm\game_data__original”.

More details on these files and their structure will be added in future releases.



Gameplay Example

To help in illustrating control of the game, an example playthrough snippet is provided below.


After starting the game the player will be near by a moon, a water planet, and a space station.  Several ships will be near this station with one, a cargo ship, approaching.  The cargo ship will halt near the station for a bit then begin moving off.  It will move to a position away from the station, wait for a time, then return.  It will continue to repeat this cycle.

The player may observe this by first pressing the down and left arrow keys to turn the ship towards the station.  Prese ctrl-s to activate the Sensor HUD.  Press ctrl-down_arrow until the cargo ship is highlighted.  Press ctlr-r to initiate rotating towards this object.  As the ship moves the player’s ship will auto-rotate to track the moving ship.   Press alt-r or alt-a to cancel the follow orders.

Press ctrl-f to initiate following the cargo ship.  The player needn’t have already rotated to the ship.  The player ship will follow the cargo ship as it moves.  Press alt-f or alt-a to cancel the follow orders.

Press ctrl-down_arrow until a planet is highlighted.  Press ctrl-m to begin moving to the planet.  After a time the planet will appear in front and the player’s ship will slow as it approach, eventually stopping an clearing the move-to order when it reaches the planet.

Press ctrl-e to refresh the Sensor HUD display and select a moon and repeat the move-to command.

Press ctrl-n to select the Navigation HUD to select navigation points and use the move-to command to move to these.  This will put the ship out of the original star system for several of the navigation points.  The navigation point 48k light years will take several hours to reach btw.  It’s included as an illustration of the scale of the game.

Press ctrl-g to change the ‘gear’ of the ship’s drive.  Change the gear to 8 (highest value).  Press ctrl-1 to turn off auto-slowdown, and press shift to accelerate.  The ship will leave the star system and travel between the stars.

Change the view using ctrl-v.  Change the viewpoint distance (from the player ship) using the mouse wheel.

As the ship travels between stars press ctrl-s to activate the Sensor HUD (if not already active), and ctrl-e periodically to refresh the Sensor HUD.  Press alt-e to activate auto-refresh of the Sensor HUD.  Press ctrl-e to halt auto-refresh and update the Sensor HUD.  Press ctrl-down_arrow/ctrl-up_arrow to select a star.  Press ctrl-m to move to this star.  Press ctrl-e as the ship approaches the star to check for planets.  Move to these as desired, using ctrl-e to refresh the Sensor HUD as a planet is approached to check for moons.


It is planned that instructional videos will be added later to further showcase control of the game.



Music and Sounds

This release of the game does not support generation of sounds or music.  The addition of these is planned for inclusion in a later release.



More Information

The game’s website is:

Please refer there for notices on updates and other news.