SpaceShot’s free version

Today is the official release of, a free version of the online skill game launched last year by SpaceShot that awards free spaceflights to winners of its weather prediction game. The free version is funded through advertising, such as Google AdSense ads, and offers a wide range of prizes, from a zero-g flight and $2,250 scholarship to a trip for two around the Moon plus $100 million. (Needless to say, the former will be much less difficult to win than the latter.)

SpaceShot’s founder, Sam Dinkin, describes his thinking about the formation of FreeSpaceShot in an essay in this week’s issue of The Space Review. The ad-supported model is based, he said, on the “forced listening” technique used in radio contests. The focus here is on children, even though they might be too young to immediately take part in the flights, in order to both maintain their enthusiasm for space and perhaps rekindle the parents’ interest. (Another reason to keep parents interested and involved is to comply with federal regulations like the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Rule.)

FreeSpaceShot still has some rough edges to work out; I noticed this morning some dead links, including to the FAQ and a free lesson plan for those in grades 3-8. It also remains to be seen if children will find a competition like this worth playing on a regular basis, so that FreeSpaceShot can build up the traffic and advertising revenue needed to award the prizes.

4 comments to SpaceShot’s free version

  • Thanks for pointing out the links!

  • Thanks for pointing out the broken links. As a little company, we could definitely use some help from the community in improving our product in all ways.

  • freespaceshotplayer

    Sam, i would do some more serious testing of your website. There are a lot of dead links and sometimes you can see the stats of your opponent and sometimes you don’t. I also suddenly got a play for level 45 when i lost at level 50 and started at level 60 and i had just won once. And before i won i made another guess and this was apperently used for my level 50 play, while i expected it would be for another level 60 play.
    If i where you i also would specify on your website that if you disclose your email adress you won’t sell them to all sort of spammers. Or are you planning to finance this game by selling email adresses?

  • Stats should be working consistently and now have handsome graphics drawn by Brandi Walsh of Brick House Media. We award free game counters to players who go unmatched and get a bye to the next milestone and almost always let players keep “bank errors in their favor”.

    We are paying for the prizes from ad revenue. Email address is optional if you don’t want to provide us with it.

Leave a Reply




You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>