EVE Online is getting a mobile spinoff

The vast sci-fi universe of EVE Online is coming to your smartphone. This evening EVE developer CCP Games announced a new spinoff of the massively multiplayer game, that will be released in a handful of countries in “the near future,” before getting a full global launch sometime next year. The free-to-play game is called Project Aurora, and is being developed by Finnish mobile studio PlayRaven.

The new game looks surprisingly like EVE, which first launched in 2003 and offers a dizzyingly complex universe for players to explore. “For years and years we have wanted to bring the EVE universe to mobile devices in a way that is tailored to the platform and EVE fans,” CCP CEO Hilmar Veigar Pétursson said in a statement.

Here’s how the developer describes the upcoming spinoff:

In Project Aurora, players must work together to dominate the center of the galaxy, and become the most powerful corporation in the universe. Project Aurora will be a massively multiplayer​ ​mobile​ ​universe,​ ​filled​ ​with​ ​epic​ ​player​ ​stories.

Those player-created stories are a large part of EVE’s appeal. The game often makes headlines for massive in-game space battles that result in the loss of ships that cost thousands of real-world dollars. Players have formed their own religions. It’s so complex that someone even wrote a book about EVE’s player-driven history and politics.

Aurora won’t be the first spinoff of the popular game either; CCP has also delved into virtual reality with the space shooter EVE Valkyrie. Last year, in an attempt to reinvigorate the aging game, CCP announced plans to make EVE a free-to-play experience. “We’ve been doing everything we can to bring more people into our spectacular sandbox,” the developer said at the time.

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