It's as if game developers collectively decided that they were fed up of PC games not being about space. So now, a lot of PC games are about space. At least, the ones that aren't roguelikes are. Space Engineers (opens in new tab) , for example, which is a newly announced physics-based sandbox game about being an engineer. In space. You've probably worked out how they decided on that name.
"Space Engineers is a sandbox game about engineering, construction and maintenance of space works," explains the game's description (opens in new tab) . "Players build space ships and space stations of various sizes and utilization (civil and military), pilot ships and perform asteroid mining.
"Space Engineers utilizes a realistic volumetric-based physics engine: all objects can be assembled, disassembled, damaged and destroyed."
The developers say they're staying mindful of realism - at least as much as you can in a game about speculative future space engineering. "Think about modern-day NASA technology extrapolated 60 years into the future. Space Engineers strives to follow the laws of physics and doesn't use technologies that wouldn't be feasible in the near future."
Space Engineers is currently in alpha development, and is planned for a Steam Early Access release soon.