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I'm trying to put together a new planetary system. A larger than earth planet, in a binary-sun system, and I'm wondering if anyone knows of a set of books, websites, or software that would make my job easier? Deciphering seasons (length and intensity), temperatures (based on distance from star, etc), and more...

What would be my options here? Or are there any?

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closed as too broad by SevenSidedDie, Oblivious Sage, Phil, Ernir, wraith808 Jul 9 '13 at 17:19

There are either too many possible answers, or good answers would be too long for this format. Please add details to narrow the answer set or to isolate an issue that can be answered in a few paragraphs.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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Stars Without Number has good planet generation rules, including a whole range of factors, although I'm not sure if it goes into the insane level of detail you want. It's free & legal to download from here –  Dakeyras Jul 8 '13 at 22:57
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There are so many options. Grab any pre-90s sci-fi game (though some more recent would do too) and flip to their star system creation chapter. Traveller is the exemplar, but again, there are so many. –  SevenSidedDie Jul 8 '13 at 23:53
    
Hello, randomblink, welcome to the site. Because we're an expert Q&A resource our rules are tighter than on most sites, and this question is likely to be closed as "too broad" - it invites lists of resources, rather than a definitive "right" answer. I'd recommend rephrasing it to ask more about exactly what your world is like and what you need; this should let someone give you a single answer that fills your needs. –  Tynam Jul 9 '13 at 9:28
    
True you might what to try the sci-fi and fantasy stack exchange. My small amount of remembered knowledge though; I don't think binary star systems can really have possible habitable planets because of the extreme temperature ranges and the strange interplay of gravity between the 2 stars. –  Joshua Aslan Smith Jul 9 '13 at 13:12
    
It's not impossible to have a planet inhabitable to earth-like life in a binary system, though it does complicate things dramatically. probably the easiest way to do it is to have 2 very intense suns very close together relative to the distance between them and the planet. The latter allows the planet to effectively just orbit the center of gravity of the system of the two suns, dramatically cutting down on the gravitational wierdness, and the high energy output of one or both suns lets you be that far out and still warm enough. –  Matthew Najmon Sep 11 '13 at 0:36

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Traveller: The New Era did go into this sort of detail but it was a bit dry and not much fun.

When I ran Rogue Trader I cheated and copied a bunch of planetary data from the old Amiga and PC game Elite II: Frontier because that had the detail I needed on star types, planet types and numbers, and so on. While I didn't make use of stuff like surface temperature and length of seasons, that data was there if I needed it.

I'm not familiar with any other open world space games but I imagine most of them have something similar; Frontier's was notable because it had the appearance of being plausible and realistic.

Assuming you don't have access to any of the games in the Elite series there is a recreation of the starmaps from the game here.

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The closest I have is the SPACE book by GURPS (which goes into a decent amount of details) and an old D&D World Creator book. But I want a complete system. I would LIKE to pop open an app, fill out some basic details (planets size, it's mainly water, etc) and have it generate the other pieces based on scientific principles. Realistic. shrugs –  randomblink Jul 10 '13 at 15:04

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