I posted a question to the facebook page a few days ago, asking people whether they would like to have the freedom to modify the outcomes of certain people and events in the game, or would they prefer the sinking to occur on a strictly predestined timeline. (For the original post, click here)
The post got a wide array of feedback, ranging everywhere from the ability to all out prevent the sinking, to being nothing more than a 3rd person observer of the sinking. And, in terms of numbers, the fan base seemed to be polarly torn on the question. The option was suggested that alternate modes would be made where the player can be exposed to two different 'universes', one where the player can change anything, and one where the player can do little to nothing. The problem with that is that it would require a very large amount of work for our small crew- essentially requiring us to make two different games. We're already planning to put 3 or 4 game modes in this project, so adding another would be overload.
However, what I think will be the final decision on this question, is the original choice I was going to go with before making the post. To be specific, let's go over it.
The ship sinks in 2 hours and 40 minutes; no changing that. It breaks in half, most people go down with the ship, and rescue doesn't arrive until too late. There is a fictional storyline throughout the game, which the player will have complete control over. There is a very limited number of fictional characters in the game- only involved directly in the main plot- and all of those will be under the influence of the player as well. There will be one or two historical figures you may be close with, whom you will be able to influence their time during the ship, but if you do not interact with them, you will see them go about the sinking just as they would have in 1912.
In short, you will have influence over the main plot (of course), and only slightly on the historical figures tied in to the plot itself. There will be a number of opportunities to take part in team efforts by the ship's crew that really occurred during the sinking (i.e. keeping the power going, the evacuation, etc), but, sorry to make you feel inferior, but it's nothing they couldn't do without you :p