shared horizons

Kerbal Space Program Update Celebrates the European Space Agency

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Private Division and Squad, the publisher and developer behind realistic space sim Kerbal Space Program, announced a partnership with the European Space Agency (ESA) for an upcoming update. The free Kerbal Space Program update, Shared Horizons, will release on July 1 on PC (later on consoles), adding ESA-themed items and two new missions that celebrate the ESA’s accomplishments.

BepiColombo is the first new mission from Shared Horizons. It chronicles the ongoing mission between the ESA and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency to Mercury. Players are tasked with lauching a ship and landing on Moho, the Kerbal version of Mercury, using objectives pulled from the actual ESA mission.

The second new mission is Rosetta. Rosetta is based on the ESA’s successful mission of landing on a Jupiter-family comet in order to gather important research information. The update also adds the Ariane 5 rocket as well as ESA-themed space suits, parts, and new scientific experiments.

“We are excited to partner with the ESA to bring their actual missions and spacecraft to Kerbal Space Program for the first time,” said Michael Cook, Executive Producer, Private Division. “It is an honor to work hand-in-hand with such a world-class space organization, and we cannot wait for fans to experience these monumental missions with the Shared Horizons update.”

“Here at the European Space Agency, many of our engineers and scientists are very familiar with KSP,” said Günther Hasinger, Director of Science at ESA. “Both Rosetta and BepiColombo are highly complex missions that have specific challenges; however, each prove to be very rewarding for ESA and the global scientific community. Because of this, I am very happy that these ground-breaking science missions can be experienced on Kerbin as well as on Earth.”

Kerbal Space Program is available on PC (Windows, Mac, Linux), PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. The Shared Horizons update is coming to PC on July 1, and launching later on consoles. A sequel, Kerbal Space Program 2, was announced last year and scheduled for launch later this year.

Minecraft Education Edition

Minecraft: Education Edition is Free for Educators to Support Online Teaching

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Schools around the country and the world are closing to help slow the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, which means many students and teachers are using online tools for education. Microsoft is helping teachers and students stay connected by offering Minecraft: Education Edition for free to all educators through June 30.

In order to qualify, teachers will need to have a valid Office 365 Education account, and fill out this form. You’ll also need to make sure your school is eligible. If you receive access, you can download Minecraft: Education Edition for Windows, Mac or iOS (iPad). If you don’t have a valid account, or just want to check it out, you can still download the game and try a free demo lesson.

Microsoft has also put together a remote learning toolkit that includes 50 lessons, activities, and projects that educators can use with Minecraft: Education Edition. A new category of educational Minecraft worlds are also available in the Minecraft Marketplace. All of these worlds are free to download through June 30.

“Distance learning requires students to be engaged in content in news ways,” said Becky Keene, Minecraft certified trainer and educator. “As they work remotely, they need to have activities and environments that motivate them to learn. Minecraft supports almost any content area, and students can show me their learning without missing a beat!”