Star Citizen 3.0 release promises revolutionary features

Intergalactic camping trips or hanging out with friends exploring planets is just as valid a play style as bounty hunting or piracy

Jan 08, 2017
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For an Open World Universe Sim (yes that is now a real thing), Star Citizen has broken a lot of records. Today it’s funding has reached a record $141,095,135 in donations from project backers. To break down the numbers yet more, in December 2016, Star Citizen was raising an average of $75,000-$85,000 per day. Their website says all money goes toward development but there have been some controversial statements made by project detractors that the entire project is an elaborate scam.

These views appear to be in the vocal minority however as evidenced by the continued strong growth not only money raised through crowd funding but the size of the actual crowd itself. The project started in 2012 on their own website one week prior to launch of the crowdfunding campaign on Kick-starter. Since then the number of “citizens” has grown to an incredible 1.7 million. Nearly two million people signing up to join “the verse” is no small achievement despite what detractors might argue.

Star Citizen is rather empty at the moment but AI subsumption promises to change all that. 


Star Citizen has long had an active and passionate community. The games creator is Chris Roberts, known for earlier titles such as Wing Commander and Freelancer. Those titles have earned him considerable benefit of the doubt with many sci-fi fans who long for a return to the golden era of PC gaming. Perhaps this is why Star Citizen has been able to withstanding continued criticism from detractors. Chris Roberts has said from the very start his goal is to create a community not a game.

CIG Chairman Chris Roberts at PAX Australia to discuss Star Citizen.


The project weathered a PR nightmare when disgruntled ex employees leaked details of the CIG (Cloud Imperium Games) corporate culture to the media. They claimed Chris Roberts had to sign off on every step of the project and demanded control over every design element, game asset, character, concept and more. These alleged former employees were unhappy with how this level of micromanagement and control was holding up and unnecessarily delaying the project. While there is no doubt Star Citizen will be a generation defining title when it is complete, the challenge will be getting to that point – and getting to that point in a timely manner. The longer the project delays, the more polarised and unhappy elements of that community Roberts is building will become.

Planetary landing and exploration in soon to be released Alpha 3.0 promises much if CIG can deliver the goods.


Alpha 2.6.1 and beyond

The recent release of Alpha 2.6 and the highly anticipated (albeit long delayed) first person shooter module dubbed ‘Star Marine’ was made available for download last month. Backers were able to get their hands on new locations such as Echo 11 and Station Demien and explore space with new ships coming through the development pipeline.

Community backers are quite engaged in ways rarely seen for similar crowd funded projects. CIG has noticed this and continually looks at ways to grow and support the community and find new ways for early backers to contribute beyond simply play testing the various iterative development stages.

Toward that end, the devs have added a neat new ‘Director mode’ to their camera controls and this feature has already begun to spawn a variety of quite interesting 4K projects on YouTube.

Where to from here and what does 2017 promise the patient “citizens” of the verse? Chris Roberts has released a media statement (via DualShockers) about plans moving forward for Star Citizen 2.6.1 and beyond.

There are many exciting things in store for Star Citizen this year. We’ll continue to modify and improve our game engine to better suit Star Citizen’s unique needs. Gameplay will get deeper as new systems come online to provide players the chance to do more than pew-pew. I also expect exciting advancements as we integrate our revolutionary tech, like subsumption and procedural planets, into the game. On the Community front, we’ll be releasing Spectrum, our new and improved community platform, and revamping our current shows and adding new ones in an effort to best communicate with all of you.

This week Star Citizen devs got back to work after some much deserved time off. Presently the Production Team is huddled with the different team leads updating and detailing out the tasks we have for this year. You’ll begin to see some of these details once we’ve had the opportunity to refine the Star Citizen and Squadron 42 schedules.

We were happy to see positive feedback from the Alpha 2.6 release and impressed by the number of stunning videos and images being created with the new camera controls. We have been digesting both our own and your thoughts on Alpha 2.6 now that it has been live for two weeks. We are planning releasing an incremental patch, 2.6.1 with some of the features that slipped out of 2.6, bug fixes for increased stability (although 2.6 was possibly our most stable patch to date) as well as continued balance and gameplay tweaks. Expect to hear more details on timing in the next couple of weeks.

2016 was a noteworthy year in Star Citizen’s development. 2017 with Squadron 42 and Alpha 3.0 is looking to be even better.

It’s already clear a lot of what was teased at last year’s much hyped Alpha 3.0 demo is starting to take shape and will likely drop all at once.

With AI Subsumption (allowing for the introduction of AI, crowds and AI driven behaviour) the verse will begin to feel less empty. Walking around Arc Corp or GrimHEX at the moment just doesn’t feel alive due to the complete lack of any NPCs.

Procedural planets promises full planetary landing and atmospheric flight with the tantalising idea that in the not to distant future (no pun intended) players may have the ability to ‘homestead’ or have some control establishing basic module buildings on player surfaces.

Organisations could potentially fly to a distant planet, land and start up their own offworld pirate base but not with the same level of fidelity as the dev constructed player landing zones. Your homestead won’t be no Mos Eisley but it could be a Lars homestead for you and your buddies to chill and catch that twin sunset drift over the horizon.

It’s the little details such as this which drive the funding goals of Star Citizen because they get gamers excited about experiencing not just a level or series of missions but the opportunity to experience an entire universe of possibility. The term “Living, breathing, open world” is massively overused by game developers when describing their game. I still remember when the EA devs on the Godfather game (PC) back in 2006 used those exact words to describe their title. I got hyped at the possibility of living in a 1940s New York battling gangsters and just doing my own thing – however my hopes were dashed when I realised all living breathing meant was it had NPCs that ran away when you shoot at them. What intrigues about Star Citizen is not flying around blasting other players or NPCs in space battles but landing on a remote planet and just watching the sunset. Intergalactic camping trips and just hanging out with friends exploring planets is just as valid a play style as bounty hunting or piracy. If Star Citizen can stay on course as it has throughout 2016 then 2017 looks to be a promising year for not only the Star Citizen backers but PC gamers everywhere.

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  • Eric

    Fake

  • KillZ2MucH

    Great Article.

    • thanks! Much appreciated 🙂 We will write more on Star Citizen so stay tuned or follow us on Twitter https://twitter.com/PixeLemonade

      • AStormApproaches

        Great to hear! I must admit that this entire website in no way seems like a shill site made to hawk Star Citizen and other related products. Nope, doesn’t look like that at all.

        • It’s only 5 days old, more original content will be added each day. All sites have humble beginnings

          • AStormApproaches

            ok well just a tip, write your own filler articles instead of plagiarizing them from news.com.au

            Also maybe don’t promote your shill pieces with the same reddit account where you talk about being a digital marketer.

            Oh and have a little patience before stacking your view count with obviously fake numbers.

            I just hope CIG didn’t spend too much backer funding on this.

  • ZombieWaylandFlowers

    Hype much?

  • Urrid

    I can’t wait to SCAM some people out of their hard earned cargo in the ‘Verse!

  • Leperray

    QUOTE: “by project detractors that the entire project is an elaborate scam.
    These views appear to be in the vocal minority”

    To readers, the vocal minority is mainly made of… 1 troll (I wont name to give him free advertising, do not feed the troll) which have a personnal agenda against Chris Roberts and spend it all life spiting at CR… really, several hours a day, 365 days per year. This troll did and still continue to do whatever possible to hurt Star Citizen community of backers and CIG staff. He is followed by less than 10 guys who create alternate alts every so often because they are banned one after the others by most web game site.
    A good example are those “disgruntled ex employees leaking details” that have been proved totally false and forged, even using false ID card 🙂

    This points done, the article give a good description of what is Star Citizen. This is an MMO in Alpha, updated several times per year. Beta is expected around 2018.
    Squadron 42 is the solo game part, planned to be released in 2017. The modern equivalent of Wing Commander, done by CR decades away.

    And for those that can not wait, you can play Elite Dangerous or the incoming new Mass Effect. SC community is very open (of course some members are not like everywhere). The more Space game on shelves, the better 🙂

    • nawledgelambo

      10 people? your numbers are more than a little off, buddy.

      Totally false? Ask James Pugh if he enjoyed his time at CIG.

    • elbarto

      For the ex-employee controversy, do you have links with the proof that it was all fake and they used false ID? I followed the PR exchange between CIG and escapist back in 2015 but i haven’t seen any follow up since.
      Thanks

      • Leperray

        Hi Elbarto. I suggest you use google to find it. The ID card was a generic card used by millions of employees in the U.S. Unfortunately, this Generic ID card… was never used by CIG. They do not have such card, at all 🙂

        Second, the Escapist, who bring the light of those so called scoop, was threaten by CIG to provide any proof or to shut up. We never, ever heard anymore of any details from the Escapist. Do you know a journalist on this planet, with proof in hands, that would shut up and not provide a huge blow to those they pointed out at first if they can? Simple, there is none. The file is empty and as you follow up the story, you also know that the famous troll was directly in link with the Escapist “journalist” and those… fake proof.

        Are ther some not satisfied employees that left CIG or were fired? yes. How many are vocal and which percentage of fired employee can we count as serious insider informer? I would suggest to take with a grain of salt, all ex-employees comments if you ask me… from any company.

        But enough of that drama. Purpose of my message was to put in perspective the negativity of very few against the community of gamers.
        I tend to move along. What we are all looking for is SQ42 and multiple patch to SC, until final release.

        • nopecat

          You made that all up in your head. That is not what happened.

          CIG threatened to sue if the Escapist would not take down the article and apologise. The Escapist did not back down and CIG did not sue (so far).

          Your version of reality is laughable as the documents are out there for everyone to read.

          • Leperray

            Okay. I got it. You are one of those few jumping on every SC article to troll. Your direct exchange with Master troll say enough about you. Thanks for coming.
            The ID card has been proved and I never spend time commenting troll comment, this is a waste of time.

            So for information to Readers only: As Markus’s said, all evidence are on the net… and nobody ever heard of the Escapist again. since October 2015, despite SC being a so called scam, con, JPEGS (pick one of your choice or all of them).

            They never talked again this story. One good reason, their attorney told them to shut up for good as they have nothing but speculation from anonyme sources… Meanwhile, old and new backers continue to vote with their wallet… 141M$ and growing. This is close to 40M$ extra since The escapist article. Clearly people at large are idiot and do not read the right blog 🙂 or they are educated enough to take their own decision based on documented information… I am wondering which one to pick ? 🙂

      • Markus Neibecker

        you can always got to https://www.reddit.com/r/DerekSmart/ There you find each and every info about this stalking, harassing women hating piece of human garbage including the story you’re looking for.

  • nawledgelambo

    lol at all of this.

    lol again at you editing the article to suit your readers needs to garnish those website clicks. You’re not a writer or even a marketer, you’re just spineless.

  • nopecat

    You forgot to tell them that Chris Roberts already tried to make this game before and failed because he promised too much and delivered too little. He was known in the industry as a micromanaging ideas man that had no experience in producing a game and seeing it through to finish.

    That project was Freelancer and it cost him his company and job. He is not even credited in the game, only as Special Thanks.

    Is history repeating? You decide.

  • Leperray

    A suggestion to readers : Nopecat is a known troll, minion of the Master troll we never name to not make free advertising to this toxic guy. In short, do not waste time answering him 🙂
    And stay tune for more educated article from Pixelemonade team who clearly are making balanced article!

    • nopecat

      “Nopecat is a known troll, minion of the Master troll we never name to not make free advertising to this toxic guy”

      You got some serious mental issues. It’s a fucking video game not the holy crusades. Seriously kid, go outside and play with your friends.

  • Brian Grant

    The games five years in now and not one piece of it works the way Chris Roberts said it would. Star Marine is a great example of how this game has gone. Though most 2015 Chris Roberts promoted it showing unique features like the push pull system , gadgets, the ability to shut off gravity for immigrant gameplay, and a complex damages system. Several maps to include the enders game type station and a in fiction game call stator ball. As CIG went into there big end of the year funding drive events this was all weeks away (I was at PAX east in 2015 when Chris looked us all in the eye and Lied his butt off). a month or two and dozens of excuse’s later after the fund drive ends for the year CIG pulls the plug.
    Fast forward a year later and CIG hypes releasing this again. Only now its released as a husk of what was promised and barely works.
    That’s Star Citizen , CIG , and Chris Roberts in a nutshell.

    • Ed_Stark

      Your post is barely coherent. What the fuck is immigrant gameplay? Should Chris Roberts be funding a wall for the ‘verse?

      Take your meds.

      • Brian Grant

        yes having my spell checker screw up the word Emergent totally invalidates everything I said.

        • Lemonscampi

          No, talking utter nonsense to people more informed than you invalidates everything you said.

          • Brian Grant

            Please feel free to point out what I said that’s nonsense. The five years of development? Debatable perhaps depending on what kind of revisionist history you want to apply. The history of Star Marine? Nope if anything I left some of the features they claimed would be in 2015 release out.

          • Jairus Strunk

            5 years is a radar blip for game development. Final fantasy xv took 10. and has no where near the content star citizen is supposed to have. That’s the problem with crowd funding, everyone gets so impatient. It’s much easy for the triple A companies that can slowly build a game for 10-15 years before announcing it’s release planned for 2 years later. LMFAO.

        • Ed_Stark

          No, the baseless inanity of your remarks totally invalidated everything you said.

    • Spoondawwg

      Guy,

      You realize you can’t create a game of this scale inside of 2 years right? This is why developers don’t allow people a direct view at what goes on behind closed doors. Because jackasses like the OP here think you can basically create huge games with massive depth as fast as it takes to create something like a VR psuedo-game where its basically a room with a handful of things to do.

      Your argument has 0 facts and is barely coherent.

      Also let me unfuck your math for you –

      SC was pitched in October of 2012, today’s date is the 8th of January. This is ~4 years in. Development did not immediately start in October 2012, it takes time to setup an entire organization with all the trimmings, I am not even going to go into detail because you probably wouldn’t even get the scale of something like setting up an international game development studio or even just a medium-sized business with all the infrastructure required to actually get it going.

      You are so out of touch its almost comical.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Video_game_development

      here’s a list of games that has spent “awhile” in development –

      Shenmue: 1994-2000 (6 years)
      StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty: 2003-2010 (7 years)
      Galleon: 1997-2004 (7 years)
      L.A. Noire: 2004-2011 (7 years)
      Spore: 2000-2008 (8 years)
      Too Human : 1999-2008 (9 years)
      Team Fortress 2: 1998-2007 (9 years)
      Prey: 1995-2006 (11 years)
      Diablo III: 2001-2012 (11 years)
      Duke Nukem Forever: 1996-2011 (15 years)

      Have a good one,

      • Brian Grant

        Let me un fuck your math . It was Chris Roberts himself that said the game was in development for a full year BEFORE the crowd funding. After that five years not 1 piece of this thing is anywhere near done. Hell they are still fucking around with the flight model on year five. But you go head there white knight and get you some more of those $1000 jpegs. In the end Star Citizen will go the same way Freelancer did.

        • Randy V.

          Let me assist you with a reality check. The game studios Cloud Imperium has only recently become fully staffed. Real development only started about a year AFTER Kickstarter, Chris himself was quoted saying that and its obvious to see that all the original work has been completely redone. Star Citizen is not just a game its the start of a game company, the entire infrastructure for a MMO from the ground up, and not just another clone but an entirely new way of gaming.

          You seem to want a playable game fully balanced right now… thats not how it works. Beta is for balance Alpha is for core workings. Never has a game done what Star Citizen has, they are making sandboxes for us to play in to get feedback both technical and from us. This stage of development is normally behind closed doors, so not sure exactly what you are bitching about.

          You used the term White Knight… so you are one of the fools that listens to Derek Smart… the guy that talks a big game… but has never made one. Fools follow fools and its ironic that Derek Smart is calling Chris Roberts the fool… Chris is the literal king of space combat, and no one would disagree. Derek Smart is the king of fools, and there is ample evidence to prove that, you being part of that evidence Brian.

          • Brian Grant

            When did the term White Knight get associated with Derek Smart? That terms been around a lot longer than Star Citizen. I based my opinion on what CIG has done and what Chris Robert has said and done.

        • Leperray

          Another minion of the Troll master. Same words, same twisted conclusion. even JPEGs are part of the comment… 🙂
          Of course, independant information and video provided by Pixelemonade are a scam.. a conspiracy may be, Nothing is real 🙂
          Clearly, the concept of creating modules that are all part of a whole final game is out of comprehension for some.
          Squadron 42 will be out in 2017, 5 years after the end of kickstarter on Nov 2012 with a team of less than 12 people. And amazing performance indeed.

          Brian Grant, do not bother answering me really. But do so if you want. because you were missing a few words in your first comment : Scam, con are two of them 🙂
          Readers have made their choice already and still ignore haters campaign… 141M$ so far.

  • Zuri Zwade Boyce

    Really good read thanks.

  • Jimmy Dyke

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freelancer_(video_game) this says it all he lies and never finishes his projects! this game is the whole basis for star citizen! all over the rsi website he states this will be like my dream of freelancer… which failed

    • Leperray

      Oh my God… It look like this article bring the most out of scope guys around. Quoting another comment from Jimmy Dyke :”… rsi is saying they uphold people being racist i have the emails and im taking my case to court”

      🙂 really. Give me some popcorn.

      • Jimmy Dyke

        yeah that helped me get a refund of 440$ after 1 year so i say my case stands strong but i got away without any farther action needed thanks for trying to troll and enjoy that popcorn its on the house…
        Billing Support Team (Cloud Imperium Games)
        Aug 26, 11:02 BST

        Hi JimmyBeard,

        Thank you very much for your reply and we apologise for the delay (we have been very busy recently).

        I can confirm that I have actioned the refund of your account for $440.00 via PayPal / Stripe Debit / Credit card. Please note that depending on payment methods and banks used and involved, the refund process may take a maximum of 30 days to appear on your balance.

        Your account has now been completely de-activated and any referral rewards that were applied to either yourself or the referrer have now been reversed. Thank you for your past support of RSI, and should you require any further assistance please let us know, thank you.
        Kind Regards

        Roberts Space Industries

        • Leperray

          Jimmy Dyke, another alt account of Nopecat or one of the 10 followers of the Master Troll, newly created with 26 comments.
          That is the beauty of internet, I can pretend to have got a refund of 1M$ and copy/paste the same electronic “refund letter”… “letter” which is as legit as the Escapist so called proof of ID card of Ex-employee… 🙂

          CIG have a single refund policy. No refund, unless backer are in bad health situation or unemployment, checked case by case.

          The 2 years campaign of the Master Troll failed miserabily (like eveything he attempt by the way) to stop pledges from backers. There none vocal majority answer: +35M$ in 2016 🙂
          By TOS, CIG does not have to refund. Period.

          Vaporware, scam, con are hard to swallow by people that do test and play alpha modules everyday… so the last option is the refund campaign with one goal pursue since the last two decades by Master troll: malign the reputation of Chris Roberts.

          Your first comment about CR say it all. Copy/paste of Master Troll blog. Try harder.

          There is something you can not stop. SQ42 coming in 2017 and patchs added to SC MMO in 2017 and 2018 until status switched from Alpha to Beta.
          In the meantime haters hate… this is entertaining between two patch 🙂

          • Jimmy Dyke

            i give you proof you deny it! i tell you the truth you deny it! i dont need more than that to know leperray is a troll! let it be known!!! i infact have gotten a refund from rsi after taking my time to complain about the game and the racism! that has insued on their game, and yes i did get a refund after alot of back and forth! they do infact give refunds! its stated in their website because the game is not launched you can ask for a refund not saying with your bitch boy additude they would do anything for you at all i only had an account for less than 1 year and did not use it more that 3 times in that period so unless you can throw some fact in your claim you cant get a refund then please by all mean shut the fuck up

          • Jimmy Dyke

            lol im arguing the fact a company gave me my money back fucking troll got me

          • Leperray

            🙂

            Ok my god…. he is now self trolling himself 🙂 Thanks you make my day.
            Do you have an ID card as proof please? If not sure how it looks, ask the Escapist 🙂

            I upvote you this time. That is so funny.

  • Astirian

    Nice clickbait puff piece. Look at the URL, now do a Ctrl-F for “3.0” and you’ll see what I mean. You just used the article title and SC controversy to guarantee hits. Lovely. I’ll wager you’re pretty good at SEO too. I hope it buys you a new pair of shoes. Do us all a favour and get some journalistic integrity, if that’s even a fucking thing anymore.