Astronaut Alone: All Letters

Spread throughout the game Astronaut Alone, developed and written by Casey Jarmes, are a series of letters written by the player character to an unseen, far off love. These letters, out of order, explain mechanics and elaborate on the protagonist’s backstory. It is recommended, for a proper experience, to play the actual game before reading through this page.

  • Day 1:
    • As I write this, I’m sitting in the cockpit of my ship, mere minutes away from takeoff. This four-month mission through the back reaches of the charted Galaxy will be one of absolute isolation, my ship traveling too fast to receive radio transmissions from Earth. I have packed more than enough games, books, and films to keep my mind from going, but I fear the isolation will be the death of me. I have decided to write a letter every day and give each of them to you when I return home. Until then, the memories we have shared will keep me sane.
  • Day 2:
    • I did an inspection of the ship’s inventory this morning to pass the time. A majority of my cargo is comprised of molecularly engineered nano steel girders. In addition to being incredibly strong, the extraterrestrial metal these girders were forged from has an astounding unique quality: when it is heated to temperatures higher than -200 degrees celsius, it locks in place, unable to be moved by any force, including gravity.
  • Day 3:
    • My ship is only able to keep the girders from locking in place and tearing the ship apart by virtue of the liquid nitrogen tanks the girders are stored in. Liquid nitrogen is more than cool enough to keep me safe. Earlier today, I spilled some nitrogen onto the floor of the ship and slipped. It reminded me of that time we went to Curly Joe’s.
  • Day 4:
    • Do you remember our first date? I took you to Curly Joe’s Roller Rink, a crappy old establishment with wooden floors warped so badly by time that they resembled the Himalayas. I skated off to get some drinks for us and tripped on my way back, dousing an old woman in flat soda. I was so embarrassed. Then again, you said yes to a second date, so I guess it wasn’t that bad.
  • Day 5:
    • The ship is also carrying some odd chemicals mined from deep space moons. One of them is green and bounces back any object that comes in contact with it. Part of me wants to pour some of it on the floor of my ship and turn it into a giant trampoline. Apparently, it’s painted on the exterior of ships to protect them from debris.
  • Day 6:
    • The other chemical I’m hauling is this sticky purple stuff, kinda like glue but a million times more sticky. It’s used to stick metal sheets together.&&I was given a small tube of it to use for repairs. I accidentally glued my hand to a door and spent six hours trying to get it off.
  • Day 7:
    • There’s a port window on the side of my ship. I spend most of my time just staring out it. It’s so beautiful, out here. It’s not like Earth, where light pollution from the Mega-Cities hides the stars. Out here, you can see everything. You can see a painted sky dotted with infinity, twinkling with every color imaginable, a perfect sight never seen by another pair of eyes. I wish you could see it for yourself.
  • Day 8:
    • My route takes me by a supermassive blackhole. The blackhole’s gravity is so massive it actually bends space around it, allowing the ship to halve its travel time. I’ll be staying far enough away to stay safe, but it’s still scary. I’m close enough to the black hole now that I can see it. Or, more accurately, I can’t see it. I can just see the blackness.
  • Day 9:
    • Nothing can escape from a blackhole. Not even light. The force of gravity is strong enough to bend time. A moment in a black hole is the same as an eternity outside of it. You’ll be trapped, dying, until everyone you’ve ever known is dust. But make no mistake, you will die. The pull on your toes will be so much stronger than the pull on your head that the black hole will stretch your body until it tears you in half. After that, every atom of your body will be crushed in its core until no remnant of you remains.
  • Day 10:
    • Sorry about the last few letters. I’ve been feeling a bit depressed. The isolation is really getting to me. It’s funny. Back home, I’m normally the optimist. I’m normally the adventurous one that you keep from floating away on a hair-brained scheme. Things will be better when I’m home. I promise, I’ll never be away for this long again.
  • Day 11:
    • I wonder, how’s Pogo doing? He was just a little pup when I last saw him, an adorable little doggie I bought so you wouldn’t be alone while I was gone. You know, I bet he won’t even recognize me. I hope you recognize me.
  • Day 12:
    • I always wanted to see the stars as a kid. That’s why I joined the corps, so I could become a pilot. My unit never went farther than Mars, but even that was more amazing than anything on Earth. I think I’ve seen enough stars for a lifetime now.
  • Day 13:
    • A lot of guys I know had problems adjusting to civilian life after they leave the corps, but not me. I think it’s because I met you when I did. You were my everything. To me, you were more beautiful than all the stars in the sky. With you, I was okay leaving space behind.
  • Day 14:
    • The Company only put one crew member on the ship to save on costs. I get it, the ship mostly runs itself and I’m only around to do repairs. Still, I wish they’d put someone else on this bucket of bolts so I had someone, anyone, to talk to.
  • Day 15:
    • The ship got damaged by a bit of debris yesterday. I don’t know how, the Company told me the ship was completely covered in that green goo that protects from this type of thing. Whatever. The damage was small and I was able to fix it.
  • Day 16:
    • I was given a high tech space suit to use to fix damage to the exterior of the ship. The thing is amazing, absolute top of the line. It protects me from heat, from cold, from injury. It even has an oxygen recycler so I don’t have to worry about running out of air. If I wanted to, I could stay in the vacuum of space for days. Of course, I would eventually die from thirst.
  • Day 17:
    • My suit came with a nifty jetpack. It doesn’t hold a lot of fuel, but it is enough to get me back to the ship if I ever lose my grip. Swapping out tanks is easy, so I usually strap a couple refill tanks to my belt every time I go out.
  • Day 18:
    • You don’t want to ever end up in outer space without a jetpack. Back when I was in the corps, I saw a man lose his grip on the ship while doing repairs and just float away. His body is probably still out there, drifting endlessly. Don’t worry, that won’t happen to me.
  • Day 19:
    • I remember the day I realized I loved you. It was such a minor thing. We were walking through the park, I was staring up at the stars, and you took my hand. I looked into your eyes and realized I didn’t need the stars anymore. I didn’t need adventure. I just needed you.
  • Day 20:
    • Do you remember my brother’s wedding? That ceremony was so beautiful. Must have cost a fortune. Luckily, he had deep enough pockets to afford it. I know this isn’t very romantic, but not enough people think about money when starting a relationship. I don’t know why you chose me, out of work with only a meager military pension, to start a life with. I wish I could have provided for you more.
  • Day 21:
    • I know it’s hard, me being away for so long. But the Company is paying me enough money for this run for us to live happily ever after
  • Day 22:
    • I was an idiot, not proposing. I promise, I’ll do it the minute I get home. I was so worried about having money for a wedding and a house and a life before marrying you. But you know what I’ve realized, floating here in the stars? That doesn’t matter. Even if we had nothing, we would have each other. And that would be enough.
  • Day 23:
    • I’m almost halfway to my destination. As soon as I get there and drop off the construction materials for the company’s luxury space condos, I’ll turn back. We’ll be together soon. I can’t wait to hear your voice again.
  • Day 24:
    • My ship was struck by an asteroid. I survived, thankfully, but the damage to the ship is irreparable. The contents of the cargo hold are currently spread across the emptiness of space, as are the letters I’ve been writing. A distress beacon went off as soon as my ship was hit. If there are any other ships in the area, they’ll find me. If not…I’ll deal with that when I deal with that. For now, all I can do is wait. I think I’ll search for the missing letters. It’ll give me something to focus on so I don’t lose my mind.
  • Day 25:
    • The company, those greedy bastards, didn’t mention the damn asteroid field to me. Probably because they knew they would be able to find a pilot dumb enough to fly through an asteroid field orbiting the event horizon of a black hole. Speaking of the black hole, I have some stellar news. The remnants of my ship are slowly being pulled into the black hole. I don’t know how long I have until it’s too late for me to escape.
  • Day 26:
    • I haven’t had food or water in three days now. The air from my suits oxygen recyclers is getting stale. I’m still going. I’ve heard stories of people doing impossible things when their lives are on the line, going months without food. I hope I’m one of those people, because there isn’t a ship set to fly by here for another year.
  • Day 27:
    • I’m scared. I’m so so scared. Not of dying, of never seeing you again. Of never holding you and telling you how much I love you. There are so many things I should have done differently, so many things I should have said.
  • Day 28:
    • I gave up on the letters and threw them away. I watched as they floated away. I don’t know why I cared, it’s not like anyone will ever read them. I’m just going to sit by my ship and wait for death. If you are, through some impossible chance, reading this, I am dead. Find my love, pass on these letters. Let my dying words be the following: I always loved you.
  • Day 29:
    •  
  • Day 30:
    • You found me. You found me. The black hole, it kept me in stasis long enough for you to come looking for me. You followed the letters. You saved me. I love you.

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