Star Citizen CitizenCon 2016 Full Report – New video is impressive

Star Citizen CitizenCon 2016 Full Report – New video is impressive

CitizenCon returned to L.A this year and once again it was an opportunity to share what’s been happening with Star Citizen‘s development.

Fans gathered nice and early at the L.A venue and there was a lengthy pre-show segment. We’ll skip over that and just get to the juicy stuff when Chris Roberts took to the stage to show off what’s coming up for backers.

Chris Roberts sporting a fetching back number.
Chris Roberts sporting a fetching back number.

Chris started by thanking the community for their support and then jumped into the presentation which showed the studio’s development timeline. It all started way back in 2012 and today there are 363 people working on the game. There was a heavy emphasis on thanking the community for their support and he quickly moved onto what they have planned for the community side of the Star Citizen project.

The 2016 platform update slide popped up focusing on sharing content and receiving feedback from the community. This they say is the core of Star Citizen. They want players to experience the game but also connect with other people both inside and outside of the game. Some of these efforts have been up and running for a long time such as the Organizations System, the forums etc. So what’s next?

Star Citizen Spectrum

The next stage of community engagement is Star Citizen Spectrum. This is a real-time web application that offers “all community communications” in Star Citizen. The system is modeled after contemporary communication platforms built on a “modern technology stack”. There has been a focus on usability and to also provide tools for community customisation.

The first part is “Rich Modern Chat” in real-time where fans will be able to react to comments from members of the community. They wanted to modernise the traditional forum model which will work in real-time but essentially it’s a souped-up forum system. Spectrum is private messaging, forums, alerts, and knowing when friends are on and offline. Organisations will have access to all these features. Most importantly it will have voice capability outside of the game and voice can also then be transmitted into the game.

Spectrum is a web app and desktop application and will also be the CIG launcher and large patch downloads will be a thing of the past when this rolls out. It will also work on mobile and tablets.

The first release is due in a few weeks according to the team but it will be improved in phases. The initial release will be browser only.

Star Citizen Spectrum
This is the current version of Spectrum.

Next up was a video entitled the UEE Militia Mobilization Initiative. The Polaris class corvette was the latest ship to be revealed and this was effectively a plug for ship sale. Chris did step in to say this is to support the game’s development and should only be for those who really want to support the game.

Squadron 42

Chris says the single player campaign has grown in scale since they revealed it. Squadron 42 has 28 chapters with 60+misions, 340 speaking roles, 20 hours of performance capture, 40 distinct ships from fighters to dreadnoughts. There will be dogfighting in space and in the planetary atmosphere with systemic space and FPS gameplay.

Not all the Squadron 42 actors who have taken part have been revealed so there will be some surprises.

Squadron 42 features listed
Squadron 42 features listed

Still being worked onfor Sqaudron 42:

  • Pathfinding logic
  • Full animation integration
  • Improved combat logic
  • Mission system integration
  • Enhanced fighter AI
  • Object Container Streaming
  • CPU and GPU optimisations

All chapter and gameplay features are in grey-box or better and they’re taking a single chapter to shipping quality. They are continuing to build technology and systems for the long-term for the whole Star Citizen universe.

Chris stressed that they “want to do it right” so there will be no shortcuts. Squadron 42 will not be coming out in 2016.

It was then time to move onto the next few updates including 3.0 right up to 4.0. Note, no definitive timeframes have been specified for these milestones.

Update 2.6 Progress

Coming up will be:

  • Updated arena Commander
  • Additional Star Marine features
  • Crusader maps expanded content
  • Flight model rebalanced
  • Lobbies and leaderboard refactored
  • New music logic system
  • Updated 3rd person camera
  • ‘Stay in Game’ without going back to the lobby

Star Citizen  3.0

Star Citizen 30

  • Trading
  • Cargo Transport
  • Piracy and Smuggling
  • Mercenary
  • Bounty Hunter
  • Stabnton System roll-out
  • New ships

Star Marine

Star Marine Star Citizen

  • Star Marine will have new locations.
  • Sation Damien (4v4), Echo Elevenm (12v 12)
  • Deathmatch and control modes
  • New armor weapons and grenades
  • Tactical visor
  • Friendly player identification
  • Loading system
  • Achievements and Ribbons

Chris them moved on to the 3.0 update which includes the Stanton System rollout, new ships and basic professions.

Next up were further roadmaps slides going forward for the next year although Chris stressed there are no set dates for these updates.

After Star Citizen  3.0

star citizen mining

  • Mining
  • Refining processing
  • Refueling
  • Escort
  • Additional Solar System Locations
  • News ships

Star Citizen 3.2

star citizen 32

  • Salvage
  • Repair
  • Mercenary – Covert ops
  • More Locations
  • New ships

Star Citizen 3.3

Star Citizen 33

  • Farming
  • Rescue
  • More locations
  • More new ships

Star Citizen 4.0

Star Citizen 40

  • Travel to multiple star systems
  • Exploration and discovery
  • Science and research
  • New ships

Moving on, it was time to watch a demo of Procedural Planets in the v2 demo which you can see in the full video below. This was 100% live in the engine and real-time according to Chris. You’ll see a mission answering a distress beacon from a planet’s surface and there’s even a surprise lurking under the sandy dunes as a sandstorm rolls in which also demonstrates the kind of planet weather systems they are looking to add. It’s impressive stuff and probably the best demo they have shown so far due to the scale and content.

Procedural Planets Demo Only

Full Event

Following the tech demo, they took a trip behind the scenes look at the planetary terrain system. The presentation concluded with the team singing happy birthday to Star Citizen and next year’s CitizenCon will take place in Frankfurt.

These presentations are always impressive, but as a backer, it’s hard to get too excited for the final game when it’s such a long way out. Assuming CIG can keep going, the final product could be outstanding. However, how it will all slot together to become one amazing universe is still not clear and CIG is going to have to keep selling ships to keep the funds coming in to make this a reality.

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  • Paul Younger

    Founder and Editor of PC Invasion. Veteran PC gamer of over 22 years.

    • NickW

      It’s good to see this roadmap locked down, so to set expectations, but for me it’s reliant on their end-of-year release of 3.0. If they can get this out, it will be the true testimony and foundation for everything listed in the slides. Having said that, I have really enjoyed playing the current Alpha 2.5; even as a simple sandbox, it’s been incredibly fun with the emergent gameplay, and often visually beautiful. And watching this being developed from scratch has been very informative 🙂

      If you’d like to join up, use below link for some free in-game credits:

      https://robertsspaceindustries.com/enlist?referral=STAR-VK4V-QSYM

    • Patrick

      $750 for the Polaris is a total cash grab…which worked since they made 1.5 million bucks in one day. That said, I appreciate all the suckers out there who keep this train running because I enjoy playing SC for the already overpriced $60 I spent on it. If it weren’t for the suckers, SC would be dead in the water.

      • Leperray

        Do you call suckers people who spend 100K$ for a boat, 5K guns or one year Golf licence for 20K$? People do what they want with hard earn money.
        Those so called suckers make this game a reality. If you paid 60$ too bad… you could have pledged for SQ42 and MMO for 45$ only. Nobody asked you to spend more.

        • Patrick

          Yeah, I call all those people suckers. And no, it was $60 for SQ42 and SC. Get your facts straight. I also said I appreciate all the suckers who spend big on this game, so thank you…sucker.

          • Leperray

            What a charming person. You must have a lot of disrespect for yourself for giving name to others just because they do not act like you. I wish a pleasant day.

            • Patrick

              Why reply to someone if you didn’t want a response? I am a charming guy, full of respect for myself so if it makes your day, I’ll edit that last bit out. And thank you, I am, and will have a pleasant day! See you in the verse sucka!

      • Mydian 13

        That 750$ ship is 95% off the in game price. You will never own one, and from what I see, I’m sure you have a hard time finding or keeping friends who might own one. But hey, us suckers are going to need crew down in the lower decks.. glad there will be base backers like you who can’t afford more than the cheap entry package.

        • Patrick

          I’m not a sucker who spends a small fortune on a pre-alpha. I’ve got principles, which don’t include buying Chris Roberts a new suit and tie when they release a new glitched out ship. By all means, keep spending! Be proud of yourself for keeping the SC dream alive, I’d love to see it come to fruition. They made all that $$$ on the Polaris and we still haven’t caught a whiff of 2.6. My comment from a month ago must’ve really struck a nerve with ya, sucker. LOL!

          • Mydian 13

            Calling people names does offend me, but your a troll, and it was easy enough to figure out. My point was about how poor you are, and how you will be cleaning toilets if you ever want to see the inside of one of the larger, expensive ships.. because you won’t be doing it as captain. You can’t afford it, he’ll, I’d be surprised if,you could afford McDonalds.

            • Patrick

              Keep feeding the Chris Roberts money machine, sucker. I earn plenty of cash from my nice cushy job which gives me plenty of time to put suckers like you in their place. Like I said, keep spending! It gives me the chance to play SC forever because of suckers like you! You don’t own any of those expensive ships, it’s Chris Roberts that OWNS YOUR ASS. Honestly, why do you think it hurts me that you spend ridiculous amounts of money on a pre-alpha, I find your stupidity hilarious. I know your just trying to justify spending thousands of dollars on a pre-alpha, and that’s OK! I can’t wait to hear more about it! Oh, and your use of commas is atrocious! LOL!

              • Mydian 13

                Why are you so angry? Look, ok, you can afford McDonalds, whatever. Get over yourself. Play for free forever, but your still not stepping foot on the bridge of one of the cap ships unless a captain decides to be nice to you. Spend your cushy job money on hookers and blow for all I care. I never said I spent money or didn’t. You assume a lot, and I’m sure it has everything to do with being brave behind a computer screen. Anyone can be brave behind a kepyboard. Your funny.

              • Patrick

                “You assume a lot”

                Says the guy who claims to know what’s in my bank account, and what I spend my money on. You’re defending an overpriced game, you obviously spent big $$$ on it. And yeah, anyone can be brave behind a keyboard, which is why I’m assuming you replied to my post from a month ago! Believe me, I am in no way angry. I’m loving your replies, it’s been a slow day at the office. Please keep SC alive with your rent free basement dollars, I really like playing it. LOL!

              • Mydian 13

                Nice pivot. It almost looks like you are calm again. But I’m tired of you, go ahead and get the last word, I know how desperately you need it. It’s all yours keyboard cowboy.

              • Patrick

                Don’t see how that was a pivot, maybe you could use a dictionary on that word. Either way, now you’re a coward and a sucker. Not only does Chris Roberts own your ass, but so do I. LOL!

    • Leperray

      I do not regret any $ pledged to make this game done with high quality standard. I will keep supporting it. Live game play during Citizencon was amazing!