Is building a solar system realistic?

I am interested in building our solar system in BGE so that you can cruise through it on a space ship. Unfortunately when I make the planets their actual size and actual distance apart, I am running into lots of problems. Earth is about a million times smaller than the sun and 93 million miles away from it. When I put those numbers in, it is extremely hard for me to find earth and impossible to zoom in on it so that I can edit it. There would be other plants much much further away and when I go to far things start to get weird. Everything disappears so that all I can see is gray and zooming in on anything except the sun is impossible. Is blender just not capable of this or are there settings I need to change? Thanks for the advice!

you need many forms of LOD, and a very long draw distance for the actual celestial bodies, as you approach a planet, libLoad in ‘chunks’ that are in the camera view, I don’t think 1 giant mesh is a good idea at all, except at long distances,

I think you have a little misconception here.

The solar system is really large. Sun and planets are really small. When you want to represent a 1:1 visual model you have to live with the limitation that planets are just like dust and usually nothing more than a dot when not really close to them (close within the dimension of the solar system). In most of the areas there is not really much to see.

You need to define what you really want to get. Do you want to run a simulation of the solar system (nearly invisible planets) or do you want a visual representation (over-sized planets but looking good)? Do you want to show how planets look like, or do you want to show the effects they have to each other (gravity, paths etc.)?

Basically: Do you lean towards entertainment or towards simulation (or somewhere in-between)?

Other things to consider:

  • number precision: When you deal with AE you will not be able to deal with meters within the same formula.
  • spaces: you can create “local space” which allows to simulate a specific part of the “global space”. e.g. you can simulate a space station around the moon (local) with doors and gadget, while you still simulate the moon, planet within the “solar system space”. But it its not that easy. I usually do this with different scenes (interior scene, space station scene, moon space scene, planet scene, solar system scene, star field scene). Just a matter of synchronizing the cameras.

ive tried building the entire to a 1bu = 1meter scale and ran into some problems as well…it does something wierd with the normals on the planets and the normals get all screwed up and look like they are flipping but they are not. I guess becuase its just too big. Then i tried doing it where 1BU = 1 kilometer. Same thing with the normals. The only way i resolved the normals issue was to scale WAY down. I think when I went down to 1BU = 1000 kilometers I finally got the normals to stop acting glitchy. You still have to set your clipping right, and zooming in and out in perspective mode was still impossible, but it did work in ortho.

Another thing if you do it to any scaled amount like monster says is the sheer size of it and and the size of the nothingness in between. Think about it…if you keep your planetary distances and your speed of light to scale. It will take forever to get anywhere/find anything, even at the speed of light it would take you like 3 hours to get from earth to mars. And thats the closest planet to earth(except for maybe venus im not sure). Imagine going to pluto. And the planets are just a little dot in a whole lot of nothing. youd never just find one. I think if your going to do a whole system you better be going many times faster than the speed of light and know exactly where the planets are to even find one.

Not saying it cant be done at all. But I know it cant be at 1:1 scale because of the normals thing. Like I said the only way I got it to work at a scale was to scale way way down(microscopic). I would think if your going to do something with a whole system youd be better off making it more arcade styled. But this is just my opinion.