We thought we knew how Voyager would end.  The power would gradually, inevitably, run down.  The instruments would shut off, one by one.  The signal would get fainter.  Eventually either the last instrument would fail for lack of power, or the signal would be lost.

We didn’t expect that it would go mad.

Doug Muir, Death, Lonely Death

Voyager 1 was launched 46 years ago. It's currently 15 billion miles from Earth, looking, learning, and sending us reports. But something happened a few months ago: the data stopped making sense. Voyager is now "transmitting a repeating pattern of ones and zeros as if it were 'stuck.'"

Six years ago, I designed a game to celebrate the 40th anniversary of that launch. Golden Record is card-based storytelling game. Players work together to send an update to the record, gathering together the most important cultural artifacts humans have created since 1977.

goldenrod coloured folded paper zine printed with black ink. the cover is a circular swirl of lines and the title "Golden Record"
Golden Record, a minizine game

I’m a little sad we may never get a chance to send our followup golden record. There’s so much more they need to know about us.

Voyager is going mad.