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Updated: 17 min 15 sec ago

Jump Point Now Available!

Fri, 04/21/2017 - 17:45
Jump Point Now Available!

Attention development subscribers: the April 2017 issue of Jump Point is now available in your subscription area. This month’s Jump Point features the development of Banu Defender! That, plus a look at Basilisk, a visit to the Hadrian System, behind the scenes of Star Citizen’s sound design and the fourth chapter of an all-new Star Citizen serial from lead writer Dave Haddock! Grab your copy today.

Interested in becoming a development subscriber? You can learn more here.

Banu Defender

Fri, 04/21/2017 - 17:06


A Guide to Visiting the Banu Protectorate

Welcome, Citizen, to the official “A Guide to Visiting the Banu Protectorate”, 65th edition. There are new, fun, and informative additions to the Guide, such as tips on negotiation and personal safety.

Enjoy your time in the Protectorate and thank you for making us your choice in planning your voyage.


Sincerely,
The UEE Diplomatic Corps



Why visit the Banu?

The Banu are not only the first alien species that Humanity had contact with, but they have been a consistently peaceful and respectful neighbor who have fostered a close relationship with the UEE and her citizens through economic trade and cultural exchange. On top of all that, they are a rich and vibrant people well worth a closer look.

Known best for their industrious nature, Banu pride themselves on their artisanal craftsmanship and astute business acumen. Rather than the traditional family units or corporations typically found among Humans, the Banu instead have a societal structure that combines both into one single unit – the Souli. Often translated as ‘guild,’ the Souli is the foundation for life in the Protectorate, where Banu work and live together. Each Souli specializes in a specific industry and can vary widely; from a ship manufacturing Souli, to a trade Souli, even a Souli that raises Banu young. There is a Souli for everything. This regimented division of labor translates directly into the skilled expertise present on Banu worlds, markets and trade-vessels making for a memorable visit.

Where to go?

Travelling throughout the Banu Protectorate offers a variety of exotic sights and sounds. From the flotillas of Yulin to the hallowed halls of Trise, you can find adventure and mystery around every corner. So where do you even start? We’ve assembled a handy guide of some of the systems to make planning your journey even easier.

Bacchus II​ – Skip between the thousands of archipelagos and islands across this vast
ocean world to experience what many consider the quintessential Banu world.

Geddon I​ – Fancy a little danger? Visit the arcologies among the beautiful desolation of this geologically active volcanic world to see how mining soulis are harvesting planetary resources for trade goods.

Gliese IV – Ever wonder what an uninhabited planet looks like? Traverse the unkempt
wilds of Gliese IV, perfectly habitable to Humans and Banu, but completely unoccupied.

Kins II – For you history buffs, no trip to the Banu Protectorate would be complete
without seeing the ancient structure on Kins II. Completely defying any existing Banu
engineering styles, these sites have long baffled xenoarchaeologists about who (or
what) built them.

What to do when I get there?

Of course, the Banu don’t spend all their time working and trading. With a strong belief that you should always live in the moment and focus on the present, they take their relaxation almost as seriously as they take their work. There are plenty of options to choose from when it comes to diversions and there’s sure to be something to match almost any taste. Maybe you would like to try your hand at one of the bustling gambling halls where goods are exuberantly exchanged in games of chance. If you’re passionate about sports, the Banu have taken a strong liking to the Human game of Sataball with many arenas to be found throughout the Protectorate — just be warned that it’s common for Banu to cheer for both sides in a match!

For many who visit the Banu, the biggest draw will be the markets which many consider to offer some of the best shopping anywhere in the universe. Not only can you peruse the elite craftsmanship of the various Souli, but because the Banu trade with many other species, you can often find exotic goods from almost every corner of known space and some items from even farther than that. Wandering down the crowded stalls of a Banu Flotilla can be a treat for the senses, but to get the full experience you will definitely want to have the fun of purchasing an item of your very own. For those looking for just a small keepsake of their travels, a popular item to purchase is a tholo, a small three-sided token representative of Cassa, the Banu patron of luck.

- These trinkets are sold as decision-making devices, so ask a question, then roll the tholo to get a ‘yes,’ ‘no’ or (what roughly translates to)‘run’ as an answer.










And after all that exploring and shopping, make sure to stop by one of the dining Souli to experience some of the Banu’s hospitality firsthand and partake in one of their large communal meals. While Banu typically eat with their hands, some places that cater to Humans will have silverware available.

In the Marketplace

When visiting any Banu population center, from the smallest enclaves to the thriving cities, you will notice one thing: they are always built around a central marketplace. Human anthropologists theorize that early Banu societies must have grown around crossroads, placing themselves along the confluences of travellers allowed them to maximize their exposure to goods moving around their planet. The more popular crossroads attracted more and more Banu until permanent settlements began to take shape around them. Interestingly enough, these are just theories and not even Banu ones. The most comprehensive historians of the Banu culture are actually Humans and that only goes back as far as our first interactions with them. The Banu belief that one should always live in the present has created a cultural mentality that disregards facts of the past. To that end, while technical knowledge will be preserved (until they come across a better design), all other facts (historical figures, key events, even their own homeworld) have been lost to the ages. So, while Humans place great value on deeds and noteworthy
actions, to the Banu it is the accumulation of material goods that truly represents a life well spent. No where is this clearer than in their markets.

From stalls packed to the brim with odds and ends to the immaculate showrooms aboard a Merchantman, there are a few things to keep in mind when trading with the Banu:

  • Negotiating is a must. It is considered very strange to accept an initial offer.
  • Even though an item or a ship can look the same on the outside, it’s worth taking a
    closer look as Banu manufacturing can vary widely from Souli to Souli. It may be worth
    shopping around till you find the one that matches your price and quality standards.
  • As trade between our two species grows, many Banu are making products specifically to
    cater to Human tastes. For example, there are now numerous ship Souli who are
    constructing Human flight ready versions of ships like the Merchantman and Defender.
  • It is traditional for Banu to offer hospitality while negotiating and you will often see traders
    gathered around a slomaddon, a large ornate brewing vessel, each of them
    having contributed an ingredient to the drink, sloma.

If you are offered a cup, be polite and take a sip, but make sure to drink responsibility
         — sloma can sometimes be quite potent.

  • Most Banu will consider a deal final once the transaction is complete. Make sure you
    inspect everything closely and double check the terms of your agreement before leaving.
  • A good tip for finding a reputable dealer is watching where other Banu shop. If a Souli doesn’t have very many customers there might be a reason for it.
  • If you see something you like, go ahead and buy it! Banu traders are often transient and may not be there next time you return.
Safety and Security

Here are a few tips and pointers to keep in mind during your visit:

  • Many Humans find that bringing earplugs or other hearing protection can be helpful since the Banu’s hearing isn’t as sensitive and noise levels can get quite high.
  • While many Banu will deal with you honestly, they have what can be described as a lax view of crime and expect visitors to look after themselves, so keep your wits about you at all times. Some travelers find hiring local Banu mercenaries or Defender escorts to be a sound investment.
  • If you are the victim of a crime, you will be expected to hire a security Souli to investigate the matter for you. In cases of theft, many are willing to take a percentage of the recovered goods as their fee.
  • One of the biggest dangers that Humans can encounter in the Banu Protectorate is slavery. We strongly advise people avoid the “Servant Markets” of Kins II for this reason. However, please note that if you are captured by Banu slavers you will most likely be offered the opportunity to purchase your own freedom. There are few companies that offer travelers slavery insurance in case of emergency.
  • Please note that while many visitors have read the popular book A Human Perspective, we would like to remind people that this is a work of fiction and should not be counted on as an accurate source of information on the Banu.


A Guide to Visiting the Banu Protectorate

“A Guide to Visiting the Banu Protectorate” is prepared by the United Empire of Earth Diplomatic Corps for the use of UEE members, both public and private. Logos & photos used with permission. All Rights Reserved.

[/article] Download UEE Guide




Discover the Defender

Learn more about the Banu’s unique culture and their premiere fighter in this brochure.

Read the brochure

or

Download $(function() { Page.init(); window.Page = new RSI.Game.About(); });
Introducing the Banu Defender

In the Banu Protectorate, tradesmen are known for hauling precious cargo across long distances in their Merchantman ships. While the Merchantman boasts a cavernous cargo area, it lacks the offensive capabilities to ward off large numbers of attackers.

Meet the Banu Defender, a multi-crew fighter whose patchwork design features both Xi’an thrusters, Tevarin shields, and four Singe tachyon cannons. Though cargo space is limited, the Defender features modest accommodations for its crew and provides easy access to components. The Defender gets its name from the role it serves: the first line of defense against enemy attacks.

That’s why the Defender makes the ideal companion to the Merchantman: one to do the heavy hauling and the other to perform the deadly dogfighting. Every Banu merchant knows an investment in defense is an investment in their livelihood.

Now, you can purchase both ships as part of the Banu Pack! This exclusive 2-ship pack is available for a limited time. The Defender and Merchantman can also be bought individually in two models: Standard and War Bond. This special sale ends on May 1, 2017.




About the Sale

The Defender is being offered for the first time as a limited concept sale. This means that the ship design meets our specifications, but it is not yet ready to display in your Hangar, fight in Arena Commander or fly in the Alpha. All revenue collected from Concept Sales goes directly to supporting the development of Star Citizen; to building a game with a scale and depth that’s never been accomplished in games before. Your contributions directly finance the hundreds of developers striving to create the Best Damn Space Sim ever and the team engaging with the Best Damn Community Ever. Concept Sale profits don’t go to shareholders or personal pockets; they go directly into developing a better game. Star Citizen wouldn’t exist without the continued support of our backers.

The sale includes Lifetime Insurance on the ship hull and a pair of decorative items for your Hangar. A future patch will add a Defender poster and then once the in-game model is finished you will also be given an in-game Defender mini ship model! In the future, the ship price will increase and the offer will not include Lifetime Insurance or these extras.


Disclaimer

Remember: we are offering this pledge ship to help fund Star Citizen’s development. The funding generated by sales such as this is what allows us to include deeper, non-combat oriented features in the Star Citizen world. Concept ships will be available for in-game credits in the final universe, and they are not required to start the game.

Additionally, please note that the Defender will be entering the ship pipeline now, it will ultimately be released after other concept ships have been completed. All decorative ‘flare’ items will also be available to acquire in the finished game world. The goal is to make additional ships available that give players a different experience rather than a particular advantage when the persistent universe launches.

Around the Verse

Thu, 04/20/2017 - 18:13
Chris Roberts and Sandi Gardiner are all about the Banu. Also, the Los Angeles studio shares their update. Learn how you can earn a trip to GamesCom here: https://robertsspaceindustries.com/account/referral-contest

And for info on becoming a subscriber, go to: https://robertsspaceindustries.com/pledge/subscriptions

Loremaker's Guide to the Galaxy

Wed, 04/19/2017 - 11:38
Writer Adam Wieser shares the importance of the Croshaw jump point and how it got its name. Learn why traveling to the Croshaw System was once considered dangerous in this week’s episode.

Remember that you can always explore the Star Citizen Universe yourself in our web-based Ark Star Map.

DataCache: Nemesis

Tue, 04/18/2017 - 18:04
Nemesis

2947.04.05_19:47SET
To: scire_facias
From: Nergal
Subject: Eagle Eye

I’m in need of some covert comm surveillance of an Elysium-based anti-Tevarin hate group. Heard from a few members of the Orion Network that you’re the best at this. I’ve got plenty of credits to bring to the table in exchange for your services.

Now, if your reputation is half of what I’ve heard it is, you’ll find this out anyway, so I’ll save you the hassle. I’m an Advocacy analyst stationed in Jalan. My job is to sift through the spectrum to look for potential people of interest, which led me to discover some anti-Tevarin messages directed at Senator Suj Kossi from a group calling themselves Nemesis.

The group organizes anti-Tevarin protests across the planet, and have drawn bigger and bigger crowds whenever Senator Kossi holds an event on Elysium. Their hateful rhetoric can also be found bubbling up all over spectrum. I’ve been keeping tabs on them for a few months, but so far, they’ve operated within the rule of law.

However, their leader, who calls himself Matthys, recently vanished with a handful of his most ardent supporters. I ran it up to my superiors, but they wouldn’t commit to anything without more concrete evidence. These guys have been too smart for that. That’s why I decided to reach out to you.

I can understand your apprehension about working with me, but we both know that doing what’s right isn’t always lawful. I attached all the active casefiles I have on Matthys and Nemesis so you can see who you’re dealing with.

- Nergal

< attachment: Nemesis.txt >

________________________________

2947.04.07_01:14SET
To: Nergal
From: scire_facias
Re: Eagle Eye

nergal,

intriguing …

but i’m like 95% sure this is some bold ass entrapment scheme. only one way to know for sure

unfortunately for you, i’m not into money. attached is a list of people. send me all their casefiles each & every last one of them. none of this ‘i cant access that file for this reason or that.’ you need to prove that youre willing to play ball before i join the team.

fyi, i already got a few files on that list … so dont think you can sweep out the info on them without me noticing. think of it as a test.

- scire_facias

< attachment: shoppinglist.txt >

________________________________

2947.04.09_06:30SET
To: scire_facias
From: Nergal
Re: Eagle Eye

Fine. Took me a bit to gather all the info, but it’s all there. You damn well better not screw me on this. I’m putting my career on the line here. Don’t think there won’t be any retribution if you ruin it.

You raised the stakes, so I’m raising them back to you. I want current location and any known associates for Matthys. After sending you this, I better not hear that you couldn’t find anything.

Contact me immediately if you uncover anything I can use to shut Matthys and his thugs down. Otherwise, I expect weekly reports on what you find. If one of them sneezes over comms, I want to know.

- Nergal

< attachment: casefile.txt >

________________________________

2947.04.18_14:29SET
To: Nergal
From: scire_facias
Re: Eagle Eye

got something

your gut was right, but matthys isn’t the mastermind you thought. the attached stream should clue you into why nemesis went dark.

couldn’t trace who was on the other end of the exchange. signal had high-grade encryption and was spun through a ton of proxies. all that work was almost enough to impress me. shifting sifting through the noise to see whos on the other end might be possible. just not part of our original deal.

im open to pursuing it, if you’re willing to part with more info. even cut you a deal.

- scire_facias

// OPENING ATTACHED STREAM //

… // ENCRYPTIONFORGE //
… run:slice
/ COMM MESSAGE ID: $Hw549-Ik71, prtcpnts: Jasper Matthys; Unknown /

MATTHYS: Sir, we found one.

UNKNOWN: Excellent. Where?

MATTHYS: Sitting on the saddle point of a remote mountain pass. Looks like the shrine’s location would perfectly align with the summer solstice just as you predicted. Creeps me out thinking about all the evil rituals they probably performed here. I’ll send you the exact nav points as instructed.

UNKNOWN: Make sure to follow the encryption instructions exactly as I gave them to you.

MATTHYS: I know, I know.

UNKNOWN: That very well may be but it’s worth reiterating, it’s essential that no one else finds out about this.

MATTHYS: Don’t know why, plenty of people would thank you for what you’re doing.

UNKNOWN: I’m not much for adulation. All I want is to keep the Rijoran blight from re-infecting Tevarin minds. Which brings me to my next question, had the shrine been disturbed before your arrival?

MATTHYS: No way.

UNKNOWN: You sound confident.

MATTHYS: The entrance was blocked by rocks that hadn’t been moved in ages. Couldn’t even see it at first. On top of that, the shrine was cut into one of those strange rock formations that’s all over these mountains. Hell, we would’ve driven right by this one if we weren’t being methodical with our scans.

UNKNOWN: Was there anything inside?

MATTHYS: We’re still pulling everything out of there. The place was packed to the ceiling. Looked more like a storage facility than a shrine when I first stepped inside. I’d guess some Tevs used it to hide anything they didn’t want destroyed during the Purge. No idea what half this shit is but it’s gotta be worth a small fortune.

UNKNOWN: I was very clear when I hired you that nothing was to be removed.

MATTHYS: Selling this haul could bankroll my crew for years.

UNKNOWN: Selling it might generously fund your little group, but it could also help spread that foolish ideology across this Empire, inspire Tevarin communities to stand up against the Empire. Is that what you want, Matthys?

MATTHYS: No, sir, but—

UNKNOWN: You will return the artifacts to the shrine and use a core to melt every single vile piece into slag. Nothing, and I mean nothing, must survive. I don’t care how much it’s worth. Do you understand, Matthys?

MATTHYS: I do, but my crew might—

UNKNOWN: Your crew needs to be reminded about what’s at stake here. If they really want to end the threat of a resurgent and rebellious Tevarin population, then this is what must be done. If not, then they might not be as loyal to the cause as you think.

MATTHYS: Guess that makes sense.

UNKNOWN: Now that we know these shrines really exist we must move fast to eliminate the rest of them before anyone discovers what we’re doing.

MATTHYS: It’ll be a great victory for Humanity if we do.

UNKNOWN: Turning the entire site to ash is more important than you could ever imagine. It’s the only way we can ensure the Rijora remains lost to history.

// END STREAM //

This Week in Star Citizen

Mon, 04/17/2017 - 12:35

Greetings Citizens

It’s been a busy week.

Last week saw the release of ATV with our always stellar UK Studio Update and the addition of what was almost certainly our largest, most in-depth Ship Shape segment of all time: the Aegis Javelin. ATV has grown and evolved by leaps and bounds over the last year, and a large part of that is due to the continued support of our Subscribers, and the tremendous work of team members across the world dedicating their time and efforts to pulling back the curtain and showing you more of what we’ve been working on than ever before.

So to you and to them, I just wanted to add one more, “Thank You” to the pile. You’re the best.

Yeah, you.

Okay, maybe not YOU, but definitely you.

Also last week we published our March Monthly Studio Report and our biggest schedule update, ever, including a behind-the-scenes video detailing just some of the considerations made when putting together a production schedule at any level. Doing this was something Chris was extremely passionate about, and I don’t have to tell you how contagious that passion for making Star Citizen can be. It’s one of the many reasons we enjoy working on a project like this.

If you haven’t checked out Chris’ Letter from the Chairman and the 3.0/2017 Production Schedule Report, I’d highly recommend you do so.

I also got to visit a replica of the Hotel Room from the end of 2001: a Space Odyssey this weekend and I’m still excited about it so I’m including a line about it and picture here and nobody can stop me. I’m even gonna bold it.

This week brings us continuing episodes of Citizens of the Stars and Loremaker’s Guide to the Galaxy, an ATV on Thursday from the LA Studio, and the return of Happy Hour Gamedev on Friday. What’s on this week’s Gamedev? Well, if things go how I think they’re gonna go, it won’t be like anything you’ll ever see from any other game studio, so check that out. Of course, thinking about it, that’s every episode of Happy Hour Gamedev so far, isn’t it?

Subscribers can look for a thread about the next Subscriber’s Town Hall to go up in the Den sometime this week, and a thread for the next 10 for the Chairman Special Edition to go up in the weeks after that.

And in case you missed it, the price for our next concept ship, the Banu Defender was announced over the weekend in the Ship Prices announcement thread. It’s $185 dollars, and the ship and the Banu race will be revealed to the world on Friday.

With that, I’ll see you in the ‘Verse.

Jared “Disco Lando” Huckaby
Community Manager

The Weekly Community Content Schedule

MONDAY, APRIL 17th, 2017
            Citizens of the Stars   (https://www.youtube.com/user/RobertsSpaceInd/) TUESDAY, APRIL 18th, 2017
            Weekly Lore Post   (https://robertsspaceindustries.com/comm-link/spectrum-dispatch) WEDNESDAY, APRIL 19th, 2017
            Loremaker’s Guide to the Galaxy   (https://www.youtube.com/user/RobertsSpaceInd/) THURSDAY, APRIL 20th, 2017
            Around the Verse   (https://www.youtube.com/user/RobertsSpaceInd/)
            Vault Update    FRIDAY, APRIL 21st, 2017
            Happy Hour Gamedev – Noon PST (https://twitch.tv/starcitizen)
            RSI Newsletter

Community Spotlight: April 17th, 2017 – Stream Citizen

There are many ways to spread the word that Space Sims are back, be that in webforums or chatrooms, news articles or reviews, but perhaps one of my favorite ways to share our mutual love of Star Citizen is through streaming. There are many folks out there that showcase Star Citizen to others through their streams on a variety of platforms, including Twitch, YouTube, and Beam, and you can get a real sense for how the game is progressing by watching the reactions of players live. This week, we shine the spotlight on these industrious individuals who share their love of Star Citizen through streaming.

Visit the Community Hub




Talung

A self-proclaimed “gamer from the days of the Sinclair Spectrum and somehow still remaining a complete noob at most games,” Talung can often be found streaming Star Citizen and was recently partnered with Twitch.

You can find his stream channel at twitch.tv/talung.

Grakees

A fan and backer since May 2013, Grakees streams Star Citizen throughout the week. You can join in the fun at twitch.tv/grakees and experience the HUGS. He’s big on hugs. Watch out.


Sgt. Gamble

You may remember Sgt. Gamble from our CitizenCon 2016 Pre-Show gamestreams. His streams often have an infectious energy that his viewers enjoy.

You can check out his channel at twitch.tv/sgt_gamble.

RedLir

RedLir streams nearly every day of the week, often highlighting his adventures in Star Citizen. As a member of TEST Squadron… well, what more do I really need to say, right?

You can catch his streams at twitch.tv/redlir.

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Citizens of the Stars

Mon, 04/17/2017 - 11:38
Welcome to Citizens of the Stars, our new weekly program exclusively about you, the Star Citizen Community. Whether through bug reports on the issue council, feedback on the forums, or the creation of content inspired by the game, Star Citizen is only possible because of the community. Citizens of the Stars not only highlights these contributions, but also puts a dev in the hotseat for a round of Quantum Questions, which addresses some fun facts about the dev and game. This week’s Citizen Spotlight shines on the Moon Shiners and all the stellar Star Citizen content they create. Will Junior Technical Designer Robert Gaither take the Quantum Questions top spot?

Remember, many of the questions used are taken from our Star Citizen Subscribers in this thread here. Don’t forget to add yours for inclusion in future episodes, vote for the ones you want to see answered, and remember to keep them short and concise if you want your best chance of having them answered in under two minutes.

The links for this week’s content are below:

Letter from the Chairman: The Road Ahead

Sun, 04/16/2017 - 08:33
Letter from the Chairman: The Road Ahead Greetings Citizens,

After many months of estimating and planning I am excited to share with you the Star Citizen Schedule and Roadmap for the rest of this year.

First, I would like to take a moment to thank the outstanding producers around the company who have worked with the Directors and Leads to bring this schedule to the point we feel comfortable sharing it publicly. Creating a proper production schedule is a Herculean task in and of itself and then knowing that it will be visible to over a million eager supporters around the world is a daunting prospect. The schedule you are now looking at is built from the estimates of hundreds of developers around the company, collected and integrated against our overall objectives for the game. To give you an idea of the work that goes into building and maintaining a schedule of the complexity needed for Star Citizen, I would like to share a video with you, it’s well worth your time to see just how much work and thought is needed to schedule manage something of the scope of Star Citizen.

The next Release is a major milestone for us, as it will be the first time the community will get to experience the Planetary Tech in a Live build. Like the Star Citizen Alpha numbering change from 1.3 to 2.0 for the move to Large World, with its 64-bit precision and Local Grid physics tech, that allows us to deliver a game of our detail at a solar system scale, 3.0 represents a giant jump in gameplay potential from the code in the 2.x branch. For a start, it will contain about nine months of our main development branch beyond 2.6.x as well as almost two years of Planetary Tech development that the Frankfurt Engine team embarked on in the last half of 2015. The Planetary Tech opens up a whole new landscape (pun intended) for adventure. In the same way that Large World and Physics Grids created new possibilities in gameplay by allowing players to go from walking around a space station to boarding a ship, flying it hundreds of thousands of kilometers, exiting their pilot seat, walking to an airlock, opening it and EVAing over to a derelict station, all from the same point of view, the Planetary Tech takes it one massive leap further. When you see a Planet or Moon, you will be able to fly there, land and explore on foot, or from your ship or a ground vehicle you have brought with you. All seamlessly, all with the incredible first person detail that Star Citizen is known for. With this we are delivering something that goes way beyond the initial promises and conception of Star Citizen; we will be simulating a First person Universe with almost no limits. It’s a great illustration of how with the support of a Community as great as Star Citizen’s anything is possible.

With the debut of 3.0 at the end of June we’re starting with the three Moons around Crusader; Cellin, Yela and Daymar. In addition, we’re hoping to also get the Planet-like Asteroid Delamar and its landing zone Levski in as a “Stretch” goal. Then as we move through the year the universe will expand to include all the main landing zones for Stanton. We had originally hoped to deliver most of the Stanton Landing Zones with the first release of Planetary Tech, but that proved optimistic once the talented team at Behaviour, who had built ArcCorp, Levski, Grim HEX and had begun work on the remaining landing zones of Stanton, moved off Star Citizen and onto another Behaviour project in December. We had been steadily shifting our reliance away from external resources and we felt it would be unfair to block them from the opportunity to work on their own game. Unfortunately, replacing an Environment team of over 20 is no small task, which has set back the progress we had originally planned to make on the landing zones of Stanton. As of today, we have just abut replaced the team with internal hires and we are continuing to hire additional environment artists as fast as we can find ones that meet our quality bar. The Environment Team is now some 37 artists strong, so long term we feel we are better situated to deliver the vast amount of locations that Star Citizen and Squadron 42 needs.

Rather than make everyone wait for the landing zones to all be completed we decided the best course of action would be to get the Planetary Tech and the other improvements in everyone’s hands as soon as possible. Our goal for 3.0 is to again do what we found so valuable when building Arena Commander: involve the community as soon as possible. More than any other process, it is YOUR feedback that helps further Star Citizen’s development… which means that we need you on our moons with this next release. The worlds we’re creating are massive, and giant planets mean we need a lot of eyes (and mice, keyboards and flight sticks) making sure they’re up to par. How big do I mean? It takes about four and half hours to circumnavigate the Cellin in a Dragonfly at full afterburn or twelve and half days of walking! If every single person registered through RSI today stood on the same moon at the same distance, they wouldn’t even see each other. There’s a lot to explore and a LOT to test in this massive step forward for Star Citizen.

While the Planetary Tech is maybe the biggest headline, it is just one of the many new pieces of tech that will debut with 3.0. With the increased detail of the Weekly Studio reports, you’ve been seeing glimpses of fundamental systems that we have been building that will dramatically increase the ability to interact and be immersed in the universe of Star Citizen. Systems like Item 2.0 with its new Player Interaction Mode that allows for a much wider variety of actions and gameplay, such as managing a wider array of your ship’s functions to using and manipulating items like you can in real-life. Or the Entity Owner Manager that will allow us to persist proper state on Players, Ships and Items no matter where they are, even if not in memory or owned by a Player. If your ship is shot up, it will still be shot up when you log back in or return to spot you left it on a Moon. Or the completely new dynamic Physics Grid System that handles the needs of planets and the wide-open reaches of space. You can stand on a Moon as it rotates on its axis, watching the sun rise and fall! Or Cargo and Kiosks that will open the possibility of Professions by allowing Players to earn money as a Trader, Hauler or Pirate. Of course Haulers need protection and Pirates need hunting, which creates opportunities for Mercenaries and Bounty Hunters via the new MobiGlas Mission App. Or the debut of Subsumption’s Mission system which provides a scalable and flexible system that is tightly integrated with our new AI systems, allowing us to generate challenging encounters and scenarios on the fly as well as creating a structure for multipart and narrative missions longer term.

I could go on for a few more pages as there are so many new features and content that will be arriving in the next release but in the spirit of TL;DR go to here; to see a detailed list of the Star Citizen Alpha 3.0 Features.

Star Citizen 3.0 Alpha is just the first step though. We’ve decided to share our longer roadmap through the rest of the year, so you can have visibility on what parts of the Stanton System come online and when, along with the associated gameplay. Our plan is to have two more releases in the LIVE branch of Star Citizen this year after 3.0 that fill out the Stanton System beyond what we outlined last year.

It’s a pretty big deal to share the schedule of our longer term roadmap, but we felt that it would help with everyone’s visibility on when certain features and content can be expected and understanding when things take longer or priorities shift due to unforeseen problems. We would not be here without all of your support and in some ways the Community is an extension of the development team providing the funding and the feedback on the huge undertaking we are doing.

No one has ever attempted to build a game as ambitious as Star Citizen and I doubt any Publisher would have the patience or stamina that it requires to build something that breaks molds the way Star Citizen does. 3.0 with its Planetary Tech is a testimony to the power of Crowdfunding and an enthusiastic, empowered Community. Myself and the team and eternally thankful to be able to build Star Citizen the right way, being able to take the time to engineer things for the long term, a way that will allow the universe to flourish for years to come. Together we are making history.

See you in the ‘Verse!

— Chris Roberts

Monthly Studio Report

Fri, 04/14/2017 - 21:13
Monthly Studio Report: March 2017

Greetings Citizens!

Welcome to the monthly report where we collect updates from our studios around the world into a single comprehensive place to summarize the various progresses (and setbacks) they’ve experienced.

Last month we debuted our new style of Monthly Report, utilizing the weekly Studio Reports found in Around the Verse to create an overview of progress made in the last four weeks. In addition to our continuing progress with Squadron 42 and the PU 3.0 undertaking, we released both 2.6.2 and 2.6.3 to the entire community, and have now focused those attentions to the upcoming Star Citizen Alpha 3.0.

With that, let’s review some of what each studio did this month.

CIG Los Angeles

CLOUD IMPERIUM: LOS ANGELES



SHIP ART AND DESIGN

The ship team spent a lot of the month working on the Drake Buccaneer. Art created a custom dual weapon mount and generated all the LODs, while the tech content team implemented UV2s and Damage. Tech design made their flight balance passes to get it ready for flight with sound and then passed it along to VFX. The ship team has also made a lot of progress on the newly revamped RSI Aurora. The whitebox phase in now complete, which includes a proxy layout of the space, establishing the animation positions, placing the screens, and making sure the characters could hold the controls. The final geometry of the cockpit has begun in an effort to improve the inside of the ship. Now that tech design has implemented all the art updates into the ship’s new archetype, the RSI Aurora is heading into greybox.



TECH DESIGN

The tech design group completed the design for the Multi Function Display (MFD) screens, which controls power, heat, coolers, shields, weapons, countermeasures and missiles, in preparation for Item 2.0 functionality. These designer prototypes are meant to help understand what’s needed and see how everything will interact with each other.



UI

As soon as these designs have been approved, the UI team will create an interface to take advantage of the functionality that engineering is implementing in the back end. Once this system is in place, a ship that is staffed by a knowledgeable crew will be able to operate their ship beyond the default system settings and min-max the various ship systems to suit not only a player’s style, but potentially save a player during a potentially devastating attack.



QA

This month QA aided LA Development by checking a variety of fixes for 2.6.2 issues. They also provided support to Austin QA with PTU & LIVE sanity checks, smoke tests, sweeps and deployments, and helped new hires get up to speed with the game. As for feature work, the team swept ship destruction VFX, Item System 2.0, implementation of recent loadout changes, and tested multiple iterations of new targeting and ESP code. For a quick reminder on Quality Assurance terms, a Sanity Check basically ensures that the game loads. This is now automated, but can take about an hour or two to investigate any errors that arise. A Smoke Test checks the basic functionality. This process takes 6-8 people about a day if there aren’t any major issues. A Full Sweep means checking everything possible, a process which requires a much larger team and can take over a week. Full Sweeps are the most arduous, rigorous, and intense, but also incredibly important.



ENGINEERING

The engineering team started a new shop entity that uses DataCore components to allow shops to be easily streamed in with object containers, with the aim to be finished in the next sprint. The plan is to make shops more dynamic and reactive to the economy by retrieving their inventory from the back end. The engineering team added a new attribute to vehicle XMLs that allows designers to specify the interior grid type of the vehicle (small, medium, or large). This optimization will reduce memory storage as all ships previously defaulted to medium size.

As discussed previously, a new Light Group entity was developed, equipped with a state machine to serve as the ultimate light switch. Now that implementation of the core state-switching functionality is complete, the next step is to start using the Light Group in our vehicles and environments and replace all instances of the old layer-switching method of light management. This new light group entity reduces the number of lights used, which has dramatic impacts on performance. For example, hundreds of entities were reduced down to 90 or less with no visual impact on the Drake Caterpillar.

A framework is being developed in IFCS (Intelligent Flight Control System) for the autopilot to handle situations like take-off and landing sequences. This also applies to AI control, so they’ll be providing the AI developers with a set of tools for controlling the ships, like a “move-to”, “change speed to”, etc. This will improve the stability and predictability of ship motion under optimal conditions.

The Room System and Atmosphere Containers were updated with several new features, better debugging tools, and several bug fixes. The room system has only been implemented in a few locations, but these changes will allow the implementation of rooms and atmospheres throughout the various locations and ships in the game. At the moment, the entering and exiting of airlocks are scripted events. They don’t factor in atmosphere of any kind. This new system will be able to replace this setup with an actual room and atmosphere that allows for a dynamic experience.

In addition to the room system changes, a new feature allows the designers and artists to set wear and dirt parameters for loadouts. This functionality comes in two levels: overall and individual values for specific items. Wear and Dirt values are used by the render node to set shader parameters that make items look old, dusty, scuffed up, and burnt out. This task also used Loadout Editor side work, where the team added UI support to edit wear and dirt.

Recently, the team started on the Entity Owner Manager. This system will be responsible for managing ownership and lifetimes of all the entities in the game and is a core feature required to take gameplay from a multiplayer game to a persistent online experience. It will work in conjunction with the back end persistence systems to indicate dynamic changes to the world that need to be tracked and persisted across sessions. The Entity Owner Manager will also work with various game and engine systems, including Debris, Salvage, Criminality, Streaming, Missions, Cargo, Shops, and more to help create the persistent experience across clients and servers.

The team has been working on scanning subcomponents, which required some slight refactoring of the object databank. After the changes, the databank can support the storage of “child” entries, which will be the subcomponents on ships/players/etc. In doing this, the thread safety of accessing data within the databank was also improved. This allows calculations to be moved onto other threads, which will help improve performance. This focuses on two big elements: the ping component and angle of focus. The ping component is the method in which a player or pilot will send out a wave to see if there are any objects of note within their scan range. This could be a ship, an asteroid, or even traces that mark whether a player entered or exited quantum travel. Since other players can detect these traces, we think that this could have some pretty heavy game implications. For example, if you were an outlaw, it would allow you to track potential prey. Angle of focus allows players to adjust the angle with which they’re scanning. A smaller angle will also provide more range, but only contacts within the angle can be detected. The underlying radar query logic is being refactored to use zone queries rather than a huge iteration of registered radar objects. This will make the scanning system much more efficient.



TECH CONTENT

Since the tech content team supports and implements every pipeline within Star Citizen and Squadron 42, one of their main focuses have been performance improvements. For instance, the team changed the mesh vertex and position formats, which massively improves streaming of these meshes as well as reducing build size.They’re also improving the Python integration within our editor, which allows for faster development of Python tools which are used by every department across the company. The tools can script any sandbox process they want. For example, it can place asteroids and generate modular outposts, which saves a tremendous amount of development time on otherwise tedious and time consuming tasks. The tech content team completed a character animation tool that tracks and reports the number of various wild lines each character will have in the universe. With over 1200 pages of script for S42, which include all story lines as well as wild lines, a tool was needed to continuously generate reports on how many were completed and what was left to solve. Once the various lines are all in, the system will be able to pull lines based on player action and situation, but also randomize the potential wildline responses so the NPCs aren’t repeating the same line every time.

All helmets have been converted to a dot skin format. The conversion was important to allow a unified LOD ratio across the character skins. This means no more helmet-less people running around the ’verse. To ensure this is easier in the future, Tech Content also created a tool that rigs skins and exports automatically which will drastically reduce dev time from an entire day to just a few minutes.

Heads were also successfully converted to use the human skin shader developed by the graphics team. Since there are 44 different areas of blended wrinkles and blended diffuse, the texture cost was quite high, at about 100 MB per head. With this change, roughly 90% of the original texture memory cost was saved without discernable visual impact.

With the implementation of the female character progressing rapidly, thousands of animations have been transferred from male to female to complete her motion set and provide a data for animation to iterate on.

To help the cinematics team focus on content needed for Squadron 42, a tool was written to allow for visibility of scenes before they even hit the engine. This allows for fast exporting of animations and preview renders which are then automatically uploaded to Shotgun. This makes it easier and faster to review the many hours of cinematics for Squadron 42.



NARRATIVE

The narrative team has been developing some additional 3.0 missions. They’ve also begun documenting posters and props to populate the world of Star Citizen. The team also created an equivalent Time Capsule approach for the Xi’an history from birth to present day as a means of expanding Xi’an history and society documentation. Breakdowns of ethno-groups in the Star Citizen universe has been in progress to take full advantage of the character customization technology 3Lateral showcased at GDC a few weeks ago.



CHARACTER ART

The character team is working on the ingame mesh of the Heavy Outlaw. Next, it will go onto rigging and implementation. The light, medium, and heavy female marine armor and the undersuit has been sent to rigging and implementation. Once the male base suits were done, an adjusted wrap technique was used to save development time. We’ve also made progress on the Female Explorer suit, which has now moved through the high poly phase, so she’ll be exploring the universe in no time. On the Squadron 42 front, both the EVA deck crew and the Marine BDU have gone through the high poly phase and are onto the in-game mesh and texturing phase. We’ve continued developing the Vanduul and the medium and heavy versions of the OMC outlaw faction. Lastly, the mechanized Titan Suit is in R&D along with other alien concept sculpts.

CIG Austin

CLOUD IMPERIUM: AUSTIN



DESIGN

The ATX Design team focused on getting 2.6.2 out the door, which has mainly consisted of adding new subscriber flair items and fixing some minor bugs. Additional shop-related elements have been updated as the shopping system continues to grow. The team is also in the process of revising the Stanton System Map. Also, Landing Zone AI and Usables are undergoing additional development.

New subscriber flair will be rolled out in the coming months. One of the new items is called the ‘viVid Display,’ which can display game locations holographically. Players can use the ‘viVid Display’ to find out more about locations, including their intended visuals. Other flair items include a series of ship schematics, which will showcase the level of detail that goes into ship design. These light board displays can be hung from any poster style port in your hangar.

The Shopping System will be revamped in our next release. As the Item 2.0 system advances, the Item Port structure has been changed as well so it can fall in line with the end goal. These fluctuations have re-addressed things like how Shop Mannequins and Item Bundles are set up. The team’s goal is to create a base mannequin object that the shopping system can apply loadouts to. The items on a given mannequin would be purchasable by themselves, or as a bundle for a discounted price. In the past, every outfit was only purchasable as an entire set of items. On top of that, a bespoke mannequin setup had to be generated for each unique outfit display. Fortunately, advancing tech will soon allow the Loadout Editor to quickly create various item combinations within a given shop. That loadout, comprised of items in the shop, will then be assigned to the shop’s inventory as a “Bundle.” The Shopping System will then spawn these bundles directly onto an empty shop mannequin with no additional effort by the designers. A process that took hours will soon take minutes, allowing different item combinations to be quickly generated for display on the mannequins. While this might seem like a minor change, this will actually unlock a multitude of options for the design team to create realistic shops.



ANIMATION

The PU Animation Team just finished a small Mocap shoot using the in-house OptiTrack system. This was a pickup shoot to help fill in all the gaps from the Performance Capture shoots done at Imaginarium studios and captured transition animations for both male and female characters. These animations included sitting down at tables with trays, going through the chow line, eating, drinking, rummaging, or sitting in cockpits and turrets. A Usable is an object that a player or NPC can interact with like a chair, wall, table, or any other set piece, but also include props such as cups, plates, bottles, crates, and anything else that can physically picked up by a person. Obviously, animation can only get these game assets so far. The biggest challenge right now is making all the usables function in game. It is up to code, tech and designers to make them work, which is why Austin Animation is working closely with our Frankfurt and UK studios. The team also amended metrics for door control panels, bathroom toilet facilities, and chow lines in the Idris mess hall. Tech is being put in place that will allow an NPC to navigate to a usable set piece and perform a variety of actions (like grabbing a usable prop off the set piece, setting other usable props onto it, walking away with the prop, going to and interacting with another usable set piece, setting usable props on top of usable props, then getting up and navigating to a third usable set piece to dispose of the usable prop with all the usable props on it). Once this one test case is fully functional, we will be able to use these universal animations with different usables throughout the game.



SHIP ANIMATION

The Ship Animation team has finished the major animation tasks for the Drake Cutlass Black. Characters can now enter and exit the pilot and copilot seats properly. For the copilot, the team used a new cockpit template called the “Stick.” This template positions the player in a pose like that of a helicopter pilot which was required to fit the new geometry of the Cutlass cockpit.



DEV OPS

DevOps added additional logging to better track issues and allows the team to dump the status of the users download session at the moment they experience the issue. The DevOps team then works directly with the Community Relations team to debug the issue or issues the user is experiencing. A great example of this is the latest version of the Patcher. As some of the Windows 10 users may have already noticed, the 2.4.9 version of the Patcher brought back music that had been missing. The exact cause of the issue was that the Windows 10 sound settings were set to 192kHz which caused the Patcher to crash if you had the music turned on. You can now enjoy all of Pedro Camacho’s music again!



QA

The QA Department has been heavily focused on 2.6.2 testing. With the addition of Multiplayer Megamap and Serialized Variables, multiple cross-studio playtests between the ATX and UK studios were performed in order to check for any unexpected behaviors, such as increased desynchronization and lag between clients, massive performance changes (good or bad), and crashes.

Since the new Drake Buccaneer came online sooner than expected, we were able to perform frequent testing to ensure the ship was operating as expected for its inclusion in 2.6.2.

In the development stream testing, Squadron 42 testing continues, as well as a range of tests with ground vehicles on planetary surfaces in a multiplayer environment. Various development tools are also being tested, such as the Procedural Planet Editor (PlanED), and the Subsumption Editor.



PLAYER RELATIONS

The Player Relations team was very busy in both the US and UK this month helping with 2.6.2 and 2.6.3. We spent a lot of time with Evocati and QA working on getting the final bugs worked out, then managing our public PTU playtests. In the coming weeks, we will be increasing and updating our PTU test numbers, so we’ve spent a lot of time working on how to roll that out, too. Lastly, we also had a great summit in LA with other department leads and stakeholders to work out our plans for the rest of year, and we got to spend a little time working with our Turbulent friends as well.

Foundry 42 UK

FOUNDRY 42: UK



PROGRAMMING

The player interaction sprint is proceeding at full speed. Rather than outlining a whole mesh, they have created a system where sub-objects can be highlighted allowing players to choose individual parts. This is especially useful in cockpits, where players can interact with individual buttons and switches to access things like ship functions and resource distribution. The team has also been ensuring the new interaction system works seamlessly with the multifunction displays (MFD). The new placement system has also come online, so players can choose where and with what orientation objects can be set down. If the placement position is out of range, players now automatically go into a throw state.

Different actor states have been added to the Player Status System, so the player finds it harder, or even impossible, to do things like jump, vault and mantle depending on how fatigued they are. Mass has been added to the suit and weapons as another way to influence the player’s stamina. We’ve also added a breathing state component to bring together the player’s status with the procedural breathing animation and sound. The team is now starting work on new gameplay elements like suit punctures, oxygen recharging and depressurisation.The team invested time in the conversation system tech by creating a tool to help simplify complicated conversations when there are multiple actors in the same scene.



UI

The UI team began the front-end skeleton framework for Kiosk shopping. This includes properly setting up all UI components such as lists, grids, buttons, TextFields, and other various assets. Once this is done, the engineers will hook these components up to the game data and get it presented diegetically in the game world. The team is also supporting the player interaction system to unify the way the players will interact with in-game UI screens across the game. This means the same underlying system used to interact with a MFD in a ship seat will be applied to all in-game terminals, wall-mounted displays, and kiosks. This will make interaction with in-game displays feel much less clunky and constrictive. In anticipation of the Graphics Team’s work on the new render-to-texture (RTT) tech, the UI team has done a round of testing using current helmet interiors to see how well the UI looks rendered onto an interior glass surface.The new RTT tech will eventually allow the UI to render properly in the rendering pipeline, making it feel much more integrated with the game-world than it is currently. They have also checked how well the text will read at various sizes and how any post-processing effects, such as motion blur or chromatic aberration, might potentially negatively impact the legibility of the text and symbols. The UI team is also looking at potential impacts the new incoming dynamic field of view system might have on the UI. This new system will allow such things like the HUD and 3D helmet interior to remain roughly the same size on screen when setting a lower or higher field of view.



AUDIO

The Audio team has been involved in all gameplay features like the Buccaneer, surface outposts, Squadron level development, and the actor status system. Work has continued on the Audio Propagation system to make audio respect walls, doors and paths. In the current system, audio triggers play from their point of origin and either being occluded or un-occluded, but always play from their source position. The new propagation system will allow a sound playing inside a room to be heard by anyone listening from outside the room, either through the door, window, or any other opening. This extends to other rooms, so a sound playing 4 rooms away will navigate the doorways and the air in between in order to reach the listener. Also, the first and second pass of the mix management system have been completed. This is a virtual mixing console that can be applied to certain areas or rooms and allows the creation of mix snapshots that can apply volume, filter or effect settings on any parts of the audio mix with faders in DataForge that can be tweaked in real-time. Setting up and organising these areas, and mix snapshots, will allow for easy adjustment of the audio mix. Finally, a lot of progress has been made on the WordUp dialogue tool to manage the huge amount of spoken lines in the PU and S42.

For fun, here’s a piece of original Star Citizen music called Atomos for you to enjoy.





CONCEPT ART

The Concept team has been finishing the Gemini ballistic shotgun and establishing the look of a new ship weapon manufacturer, Preacher Armaments. Preacher prides themselves on making high-quality, reliable and effective weapons that are favored by bounty hunters, police, and militia. In 2940, the conglomerate Eon Group bought out Preacher from founder Kino Walton and immediately ramped up manufacturing. Preacher Armaments is aggressively making its way into stores across the universe.

Concept work for the Banu Defender is complete, as well as on two additional ships that will be revealed in the future. Work continues on the truckstop interiors, satellite interiors, New Babbage on microTech and dressing for the modular habitation modules. Here is a glimpse of a WIP Truckstop interior. Truckstops will serve as waypoints for haulers and other travelers making their way through the system giving them a chance to restock, refuel, and stretch their legs.



ENVIRONMENT ART

The environment team has been refining the surface outposts with technical, engineering, and habitation spaces coming together with their preliminary dressing passes. The exteriors are now mostly complete. The team is also looking into lighting variations for the procedural system to add more complex setups for the lighting states. The greybox for the truckstop space station is continuing and now that all the building set pieces have been established, the detail phase has begun. On the Satellite sprint, we’re close to being Whitebox complete on the communication archetype, which means the modules and classifications that were specified by design have been visually explored.



SHIP ART AND DESIGN

Our ship team has been continuing work on the Hull-C and Reclaimer, which includes the new light controller work that allows for easier set up of different lighting entities and switches them between property states (e.g., on, off, emergency) depending on various circumstances such as a player interaction or sufficient pull from a connected power pipe. The Javelin continues to be polished for both Squadron 42 and Star Citizen. The team is also completing the capital ships of the Vanduul Fleet.



VFX

As you’re aware, the VFX was completed on the Drake Buccaneer and the ship was released in 2.6.2. Meanwhile, the RSI Constellation Aquila is going through its flight-ready pass. The MISC Prospector finished a thrusters first pass and damage R&D blockout. The new GPU-driven thruster trails have completed its initial implementation phase. On the Weapon VFX side, the style guide has been improved by bringing in a new system that defines the visual style of a weapon based on manufacturer and energy type. The Apocalypse Arms Scourge railgun, Kastak Arms Devastator plasma shotgun rework, and Klaus & Werner Gallant energy rifle rework finished their first pass. The layered impact library has been rolled out. Previously, impacts were per weapon and per surface type, but the new setup allows us to layer up individual elements which gives more flexibility and less maintenance.



ANIMATION

The animation team has been exploring a lot of technical previs this past month. Part of that work includes improving the functionality of the shouldered weapon state to get the railgun ready and playable for 3.0. The team also polished the prone set so it will be ready for code to work their magic on fixing any edge cases and continued to work on Breathing & Stamina to create a solid look and feel for a player breathing across multiple states, such as normal, tired and hyperventilating. The weapons-free jumps are getting a pass to bring the animations more in line with the mocap rather than the technical first pass implementation. The Devastator shotgun, Gallant, Arrowhead, and Railgun weapon reloads have been improved. Meanwhile, the Derby Studio continued with Facial animation for SQ42 and Star Citizen cinematics. They attended a facial shoot down in London for 3.0 and members of the team visited the LA studio for some facial animation R&D meetings.

Foundry 42 DE

FOUNDRY 42: DE



WEAPONS

This past month, we completed all the rockets and rocket pods ranging from size 1 to 3 as well as the first art pass for the Knightbridge Arms Ballistic Cannons. The various sizes can now be used to test out the new modularity system and various upgraded levels and combinations. The FPS weapon artists finished a second art pass on the Klaus & Werner Arclight II, Gallant, and Arrowhead which now include new venting mechanisms that add more visual interest to the reloads. The first art pass on the Kastak Arms Ravager-212 and a second art pass on the Kastak Arms Devastator with an additional layer of detail was also completed.



LIGHTING

The lighting team began determining a way to integrate lighting on modular surface outposts, so it feels coherent across potentially countless outpost layout permutations. The challenge with this task is that every room could have a different arrangement of props and objects, which dictates where lights would logically be placed, as well as the theme or mood of that room. For example, crew sleeping quarters should have a different mood than a hydroponics lab. To do this, the lighting team tested for possible issues (such as light leaking through walls or certain lighting variations looking incorrect when placed next to others) by integrating simple lighting variations into the procedural system. The team also focused on creating a visual target for our main room types (habitation, hydroponics, mining, and storage) to see how far we can push the lighting to match our concepts and goals for the interior look of our surface outposts. When these are finished, we can then determine how to break the lighting down into modular components that can be fed back into the procedural system.



TECH ART

The tech art team worked on multiple skinning tasks, including clothing for both the PU and SQ42 (to widen the range of character customization) and a skinning pass on the final Vanduul mesh (so the animators can work on their animations).The team created a tool that allows the team to quickly update the exact grip placements for individual weapons. Artists can now use a reference mesh, create an offset, hit export, and immediately see their changes live in engine. This will allow them to iterate much quicker than before. In addition, they developed a tool for the animators to redirect their walking animations to turn animations. This fairly simple tool that will ultimately reduce the time the animators need to spend on certain specific animations.



DESIGN

The Level Design team worked on the modularity of Space Stations and Surface Outposts. As an initial proof of concept, the team has decided to move forward with five versions of the outposts. Ultimately with this system, we’ll be able to create a large number of outposts with different layouts and purposes, but first, the systems, props, and placement of planets need to work as intended. The Truck Stop is our first test of modularity in Space Stations. Soon, customizable hubs will be able to create variations using add-ons and procedural prop placement which can add flavor to various rooms. The modularity of Space Stations also extends to how the rooms connect to one another through the use of pre-made flowcharts. Design is collaborating with engineers to get it functioning in-game as intended. The system design team has been continuing their work on the usables system, as well as working with the cinematics team in helping to establish the final look and feel for the conversation system.



ENGINE TEAM

The engine team finished the physics grid refactoring, which is used to store each individual physical object in the world and to allow for fast neighbour queries. The old legacy CryPhysics grid system worked by projecting the entire world onto a fixed 2d array of cells of uniform dimension. For memory reasons, the old system was configured to huge cell sizes to allow for our massive worlds, which lead to severe performance problems when dealing with lots of small objects as well as lots of entities returned due to the fact the grid would ‘wrap-around’ every few thousand kilometres. To address these issues, the new grid system was designed to have a sparse and fixed hierarchy of nested 3D grid cells of various sizes where objects will get inserted into different levels of the fixed hierarchy depending on their size. That way, the engine can efficiently handle objects the size of a planet (several thousand kilometres in radius) all the way down to small pebbles just a few centimeters across. Initial performance tests in Stanton have proven the new grid to be vastly more efficient (10x less entities returned for small queries, and queries in general faster in the magnitude of 1.2x – 2x) while using slightly more memory than the legacy system.

The team has also been developing the core foundation of our AI movement. While motion capture animation is perfect for cut-scenes and all types of linear animations where things are fixed and predictable, mocap-data can’t be used directly for animations that need to be truly interactive. To use mocap-data in interactive situations, longer motion-clips must be broken into shorter clips and generated into multiple variations of the same motion-style. As an example, a simple walk-cycle needs the ability to walk at different speeds, walk in circles, walk on slopes, and walk in different directions. A typical AI-character in Squadron might have about 1000 of these motion-clips. It’s impossible to create unique animations-clips for every given situation. That’s why we developed a blending technique called Parametric Blending.

Parametric Blending enables all these clips to be controllable at runtime. It takes the concept of “simple” animation-blending and moves it to the next level. The goal is to make the outcome of a transition or an interpolation predictable for an undefined number of assets. Each motion-clip contains a combination of physical and stylistic properties (what we call the “natural” motion-parameters, because they are inherently part of the motion itself). To control a character in a game, these “natural” motion-parameters need to be passed to the animation-system, and let it generate the motion we need. Once there are enough animation-clips, they’re placed into a blend-space. The most important aspect of a blend-space is that each animation-clip represents a point in a coordinate-system and all points are connected by an index list. In a blend-space, blending is treated as a geometrical problem. The relationship between animation-clips is extremely important for the blending to work. The placement of the assets into the blend-space is fully automatic due to how the animators set up their locators before export. In a single blend-space, there can be more than 100 unique animation-clips and they can be controlled like a single animation. In a 2D blendspace, the travel-speed is on the X and the turn-speed is on the Y. This means we can generate all motions between a slow-walk and fast-walk while maintaining the correct turn-speeds. Blend-spaces are not only limited to simple motion-cycles, they’ll be used for most AI motions in our vast universe, enabling our AI-characters to move fluidly and realistically in the world.

The engine team also did improvements to the objects blending with terrain. The underlying terrain and objects shapes are now taken into account to blend procedurally distributed objects more naturally with the planetary generated environment.



QA

The QA team has been testing the Loadout Editor. The Loadout Editor is heavily used by our devs across all four locations, so it made sense to increase the depth of testing on a daily basis. The first version of the Solar System Editor (also known by its shortened name: SolEd) is being tested as well. The Engineers went over SolEd’s functionality and gathered initial feedback from the team. QA documented the feedback and will work closely with the engineers on the best ways to address and test specific feedback in the near future. They also supported the Engine team with testing of a few things such as the updated Planet Physics grid and the Refactoring of Texture Streamer logic.



AI

The AI team this month completed some work on Mission related functionalities for both the PU and Squadron 42 designers. They also improved the setup for complex conversation scenarios, where multiple characters need to interact with one another. The first step to achieve that was to allow the subsumption logic to run on top of players. That allows logic on predefined story scenes to be executed and also ensures the AI system can fully communicate with players and interact with them. The subsumption tool also had some improvements on the conversation setup. The team also kicked off work on “Conversation Sub Activities.” The sub-activities describe the logic for multiple characters in one view, to make it easier for designers to synchronize interactions between the characters and the environment. Essentially, those conversations will still result in unique sub activities that run on the different characters so that each individual entity can still handle further events/situations on their own.

The first pass on refactoring of the perception for the spaceships was also completed. There is currently a general perception component on characters that can handle several types of senses. A normal Human will have his own vision and hearing senses, but once sitting down inside a spaceship, they will also be able to interface with the spaceship radar and group the information about the different senses into its perception component. This will allow for progress towards more “character-controlled” behaviors on spaceships, since strict dependencies between the game code and specific behaviors running on the vehicles themselves will be removed.



CINEMATICS

The cinematics team is making steady progress across multiple chapters, from implementing new scenes to polishing existing ones. The team also assisted in defining the look of the conversation system and participated in the various sprints push this system along. The goal is to allow for a cinematic feel while still maintaining flexibility and immersion.



VFX

The VFX team in Frankfurt has continued working on planetary effects. The systems for implementation have been progressing nicely thanks to the close collaboration between the VFX artists and Engineers. They started implementing some of the new effects on the planets, including various atmosphere and weather effects, as well as more specific effects for various types of assets that will be distributed with the object scattering system.



ENVIRONMENT ART

The Frankfurt environment team has been primarily focused on finalizing the Crusader’s moons. The procedural assets distribution system has seen a lot of progress and is still improving. All the separate pieces that make-up our procedural planets and moons are truly starting to fall into place. The team is now moving on to get the Levski landing zone integrated onto Delamar and will be the first big landing zone on a procedural entity. This means a new procedural planet/asteroid and the exteriors architecture of Levski will be created. The challenge is to merge the procedural terrain and the landing zone in a way in which they feel like they belong together.

Turbulent TURBULENT

This month, Turbulent launched spectrum 0.3.2, which includes major performance updates to help render messages and threads in the client. Hopefully, this will allow users to switch faster between lobbies and channels, as well as take less CPU and render time than in the 0.3.1 version. 0.3.2 also brings two new features. First users can now re-order communities in the top left of the sidebar by dragging and dropping the community to the new location.Second, the other feature is the channel thread list, so now threads that contain media information and videos have thumbnail images allowing users to preview the content.

There has also been mobile optimization and keyboard fixes that will hopefully be ready for 0.3.3. This should fix bugs Android users have been encountering when typing into the chat. The new patch also adds nested threads to the forums Users can now create a new thread and change a discussion type from a classic chronological timeline into a nested discussion. This gives us two benefits. First, we can now sort by up votes and get a nested reply tree behind it. Second, users can gain more control into choosing discussion types. The post creator will have the option of choosing if it’s a nested thread or not.

Turbulent will also archive the old forums on Friday, April 14. We’ve expanded our category list to bring all those discussions from the old forum to Spectrum. This will not be an import, but a recreation inside the new system. This month, the team also worked on the new delta patcher. Turbulent is responsible for building the actual application that hosts the patching libraries, so we’ve worked hard over this month to get this new application setup. It requires a whole new application stack called Electron which lets the team patch the game data with this new launcher internally.

Another major project started this month is a redesign of some of the elements of the RSI site. This is a massive overhaul of the website to address how it caters to new users. We can’t talk much about it now, but there will be updates as the design progresses. There has also been progress on updating the Ship Stats page. The ship stats are supposed to reflect the intent design of a ship and not necessarily the exact stats that are currently in game, but at the same time, there are things that are missing. The team is changing how the back end manages this by re-designing some of the tech view, specifications view, and holoviewer.

Community Community

Some of our devs attended Austin’s biggest media festival, South by Southwest, and participated in a special panel last month. Before that, Community Manager Jared Huckaby and Lead Community Manager Tyler Witkin attended PAX East where they got some hands on time with our incredible backers. CIG team members haven’t been back to meet our East Coast backers since 2014, so it was good to visit again. In addition to meeting many content creators at the PAX event itself, they were also able to attend a Boston Bar Citizen with fans from all over. The importance of these events cannot be understated, as they’re not only a great chance for you to meet the team, but it really energizes the team to directly interface with all of you. And speaking of Bar Citizens, the team was also honored to attend meet-ups in Brisbane, Australia; Austin, Texas; and Santa Monica, California. There are Bar Citizens happening every week. Learn more about them here.

Subscribers this month saw the Space Station flair series begin in addition to receiving their very own Big Benny’s machine as part of the annual Subscription update. The March Jump Point was also released with a focus on the Anvil Hurricane. The issue also includes plenty of lore, part of an original Star Citizen serial, and more!

On Citizens of the Stars, the team checked in with some of the best screenshot artists, original video makers, and news reporters in the community while also spotlighting plenty of other backer projects. Don’t forget, if you’re a subscriber you can contribute questions to Quantum Questions and vote for which ones are asked to the weekly development guests. Check out the thread in the Subscriber’s Den on Spectrum.

During this month’s Happy Hours, the team showed how our designers prototype new systems by building a basketball game mockup live, and our very own Ben Lesnick took a dive into Chris Roberts’ Privateer to talk about how this classic game has influenced Star Citizen.

Star Citizen joined the worldwide celebration of Space Week with many developers, including Sean Tracy and Erin Roberts, appearing on the Twitch front page to talk about the worlds being built in Star Citizen.The team at Turbulent also held a live Town Hall to answer questions about Spectrum and their other platform work. Spectrum continues to update with more functionality on the horizon. As of today, old forums are being closed and archived. Posts will still be available to read, but Spectrum will be the new home for any future discussions.

Last week, the team held a special ‘Drake-over’ sale to celebrate the Buccaneer being flight-ready. With the Dragonfly and Cutlass finishing up, the current Drake lineup is almost done. Also on the ship front, a lot of work has been put into our next reveal, the Banu Defender. Stay tuned to learn more about both the Defender and the Banu race! Additionally, an update to the Referral Program is in progress. Expect to hear more about this soon, including details on a special contest.



Conclusion WE’LL SEE YOU NEXT MONTH…

   $(function() {      Page.init();  window.Page = new RSI.Game.About();      });    

Spring Star Ship Sale

Fri, 04/14/2017 - 21:10

Spring is Here!

Whether you’re new to Star Citizen or a Persistent Universe pro, our Spring Sale has something for you. Start the season off right with our discounted Starter Packs and Basket Full Of Mini Ships. Want to see what all the buzz is about first? Then try the Super Hornet Free Fly before you buy. Even though spring is the time for new beginnings, this sale comes to an end on Tuesday, April 18.

Get Started

There’s an update on its way to Star Citizen, so it’s a great time to join the Persistent Universe. Take advantage of our discount starter pack and download Star Citizen for only $40 with your choice of either a Mustang or Aurora ship.

The Aurora is the ideal beginner’s ship. This newly redesigned spacecraft favors durability over speed. Looking for something with a bit more edge? The Mustang pushes power ratios to the max with its ultralight material alloys. Some consider the design unsafe, but devoted Mustang owners say it’s worth the risk.

New Reliant Kore Starter

The long-awaited Reliant Kore starter package is finally here! This second-tier starter is perfect for those ready to spring into action. At a price of only $75, you can’t afford to wait. This starter ship comes with more than one seat, so invite a new friend for a trip through the ‘verse.

The MISC Reliant is loaded with Xi’An technology, like Xi’An thruster tech. The Kore variant features additional speed and dogfighting capabilities to help keep you safe on hauling runs. MISC designed the Kore to support its Hull series, which is optimal for the occasional skirmish during trips. The vertical flying-wing shape makes this spacecraft especially unique.

A Basket of Mini-Ships

If you’re already playing Star Citizen, then get an eggcellent basket of five mini ships for a shell-shocking price of $160! This offer includes the Merlin, Archimedes, Argo, 85x, and Dragonfly. These little ships have a BIG job ahead of them: helping Citizens explore the massive procedural planets arriving in Star Citizen Alpha 3.0! Each short-range vehicle is also available individually for $50 or less.

The Drake Dragonfly features a rare open canopy design that’s capable of being operated on land and in space. If you’re in need of a short-range fighter, then the P52 Merlin is the ship for you. The Merlin variant P72 Archimedes racer is for those that prefer an emphasis on luxury. If you’re considering a career as a merchant, the Argo MPUV is an excellent utility vehicle capable of hauling people or small batches of cargo. The 85x from Origin Jumpworks is a luxury ship, perfect for short range excursions. Get cracking on this deal before it’s gone.



Spring Sale

About the Sale

The Spring Star Ship Sale sale will run through Tuesday, April 18. Reliant Kore packages will be available in the store without the included discount after this time.

Disclaimer

Remember: we are offering this pledge ship to help fund Star Citizen’s development. The funding generated by sales such as this is what allows us to include new features in the Star Citizen world. Concept ships will be available for in-game credits in the final universe, and they are not required to start the game. The goal is to make additional ships available that give players a different experience rather than a particular advantage when the persistent universe launches. Additionally, please note that all decorative ‘flare’ items will also be available to acquire in the finished game world.

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Spring 2947 Free Fly

Fri, 04/14/2017 - 13:30
Spring 2947 Free Fly Greetings Citizens

This weekend from April 14th to April 18th we’re giving everyone the chance to FLY FREE one of our flagship… ships, the Anvil Super Hornet.

If you already have a Star Citizen account, you can log in and the ship will be available to you in all game modes.

If you don’t already have a Star Citizen account, you can register one for free, download the game, and log in with no purchase necessary through April 18th.

We look forward to seeing you in the ‘Verse!

April 2947 Subscriber Flair!

Fri, 04/14/2017 - 12:38
April 2947 Subscriber Flair Greetings Subscribers!

This month’s subscriber flair is part of a brand new series of holographic space station models. This model represents an exact replica of the Deep Space Scanning & AstroGraphical probes constructed and operated by the Imperial Cartography Center. These stations can be found in all corners of the UEE, constantly monitoring the system for potential jump points. Each ICC probe is part of a network that allows an ICC cartographer to study a wider section of space from their control center.

If you’re an active subscriber, the flair will be attributed to your account today. If you subscribe over the weekend, the model will be attributed to your account on Monday April 17th. More information about subscriptions can be found here!

Around the Verse

Fri, 04/14/2017 - 00:00
Sandi Gardiner and Forrest Stephan share the UK studio update and a look at the Aegis Javelin.

And for info on becoming a subscriber, go to: https://robertsspaceindustries.com/pledge/subscriptions

Bugsmashers!

Wed, 04/12/2017 - 13:40
Can Senior Gameplay Engineer Mark Abent smash a bug that kicks players out of Star Marine when their weapons are fully loaded? Watch to find out.

Advocacy Archive

Tue, 04/11/2017 - 18:10
Waitaha ADVOCACY ARCHIVE
INTRA-AGENCY MESSAGES 2947-04-11_08:14 SET
TO: SA JULIE NADIR
CC: SC LEN TEXIERA
FROM: ASC FREDDY AGUILAR
SUBJECT: HIGH PRIORITY — DEVELOPING SITUATION

A strange one just came in from our friends in Customs. They had a hauling ship try to jump the line. After finally disabling the ship and establishing comms, they discovered that the person flying the ship was covered in blood.

Local law jumped protocol and moved in to secure the ship. They found the ship’s pilot, Jerome Flabian (PersonalFile #HS5-44246-773), bludgeoned to death on the cockpit floor. To make matters more interesting, the woman flying the ship, Naomi Thampi (PersonalFile #NB1-31452-081), hardly acknowledged the body or the armed police when approached, just repeatedly demanded to know how much longer it’d take her to clear Customs.

Considering the time it will take this information to reach SAC Texiera on Earth, I’ll be overseeing the operation until otherwise notified.

Nadir — Take control of the crime scene. Don’t let the locals give you any flak over jurisdiction. The ship’s flight manifest shows that it traveled from Genesis into Corel, so it’s ours.

Let’s get to work.

Freddy Aquilar
Assistant Section Chief
Office of the Advocacy
New Junction, Lo, Corel

2947-04-11_10:29 SET
TO: ASC FREDDY AGUILAR
CC: SC LEN TEXIERA
FROM: SA JULIE NADIR
RE: HIGH PRIORITY — DEVELOPING SITUATION

I’ve brought Naomi Thampi back to the station and put her in Interrogation Room 2. To say something is seriously off with her would be an understatement.

All she’s done since I picked her up is complain about the line at Customs and how her cargo’s losing credits. No matter what I ask, even a simple question like her name, all I get in response is something about the current market value of manganese or something similar. Getting anything worthwhile out of her, let alone a confession, may be trickier than expected.

That said, her hands and clothes are covered in physical evidence. Davis is with her now taking scans and samples. He’s also going to draw blood for a toxicology screening.

My immediate reaction is that she’s on something, but I’ve never seen someone so disassociated from reality but aware. Once Davis is done, I’ll let her stew for a bit and just observe. Let’s see what some alone time does for her.

Julie Nadir
Special Agent
Office of the Advocacy
New Junction, Lo, Corel

2947-04-11_12:41 SET
TO: ASC FREDDY AGUILAR
CC: SC LEN TEXIERA
FROM: SA JULIE NADIR
RE: HIGH PRIORITY — DEVELOPING SITUATION

My team finished a sweep through the ship and a preliminary records search. The pilot wasn’t the only victim. We found four more bodies in the bunkroom.

Evidence is still being collected so an official incident report is still a ways out. Local law weren’t exactly careful when taking the ship, so there’s a lot of contamination at the scene. Plus, we were delayed by Customs officials insisting that we clear the massive ship from the queue since it was causing major delays. Anyways, here’s what I have so far.

Regtags list the ship as Waitaha. It recently received a permit to mine the asteroid belt in Genesis. The government is stingy with those permits so it was a plum opportunity. Personnel files show the ship staffed a regular crew, but one of their usual engineers wasn’t available. Somehow Thampi landed the gig. We’re still looking into exactly how that happened.

We pulled IDs on the ship’s remaining four crewmembers: Ben Lateef (PersonalFile #OH8-31148-310), Cian Parker (PersonalFile #LW5-47162-163), Julia Lai (PersonalFile #BW8-43201-947) and Aisha Mehldau (PersonalFile #XE2-71582-349). All died of asphyxiation in their berths. Looks like Thampi cut off oxygen to the bunkroom once she was in control of the ship.

Finally, we searched Thampi’s locker and personal belongings. The only thing of note was a small lockbox that we had to hack open. Inside was a plastic vial filled with some kind of fermented substance shaped into small balls. It’s been sent out for analysis.

Will keep you two updated on any further developments on my end.

Julie Nadir
Special Agent
Office of the Advocacy
New Junction, Lo, Corel

2947-04-11_14:36 SET
TO: ASC FREDDY AGUILAR
CC: SC LEN TEXIERA
FROM: SA JULIE NADIR
RE: HIGH PRIORITY — DEVELOPING SITUATION

My initial interrogation of Thampi is complete. It took mere minutes to get her to confess.

Honestly, “confess” may be the wrong word to describe what happened. She feels like her actions were completely justified. I wouldn’t say she bragged about it, but she freely admitted to what she did. In fact, she actually seemed annoyed that I was “fixated on it.”

During Thampi’s period of isolation, she repeated, ad nauseam, a list of ores and their market price. When I finally entered the room she demanded to know their current values at the New Junction TDD. Since she ignored anything else I said, I finally decided to look them up for her.

Upon hearing the answers she grew agitated, and then repeated the phrase, “I told them they’d drop.” When pressed on what she was talking about, Thampi admitted to arguing with the rest of Waitaha’s crew over their return to Corel. She was convinced commodity prices would fall and insisted they return as soon as possible before it happened.

Thampi never articulated the position of the rest of the crew. She only said they didn’t share the same urgency as her in returning to Lo. So Thampi grabbed her wrench, “took care of the pilot,” and then commandeered the ship. She also admitted to cutting off oxygen to the bunk to “keep everyone else from waking up.”

Following this matter-of-fact confession, Thampi asked when she could return to the ship and sell the ores. Her only concern was that their prices would continue to drop and that she was “missing her window.”

When I left the interrogation room her tox screening was waiting for me. Looks like there’s a significant amount of a foreign substance in her system that’s been identified as “E’tâm.” Are either of you familiar with it?

I’m not, but whatever that stuff did to her is just terrible …

Julie Nadir
Special Agent
Office of the Advocacy
New Junction, Lo, Corel

2947-04-11_15:18 SET
TO: SA JULIE NADIR
CC: SC LEN TEXIERA
FROM: ASC FREDDY AGUILAR
RE: HIGH PRIORITY — DEVELOPING SITUATION

Same shit that’s in Thampi’s system is in the lockbox. Here’s what I’ve dug up so far on E’tâm.

It’s a Xi’an drug, goes by the street names ‘Flow,’ ‘blinder’ or ‘ticktock’ by Humans. Side effects include hyper awareness, cognitive enhancement and hyper focus, so it’s become popular among students and workers.

Recently, there’s been an increasing number of cases involving E’tâm in Corel. Most involve people so engrossed in a task that they neglect to eat, sleep or take care of other basic bodily functions, thus prompting a call to authorities from a friend or relative in an effort to get that person help.

So far, no other cases quite like Thampi’s have popped up, but I’ll keep looking. Let’s hope this is an isolated incident.

Freddy Aquilar
Assistant Section Chief
Office of the Advocacy
New Junction, Lo, Corel

This Week in Star Citizen

Mon, 04/10/2017 - 17:52

Greetings Citizens

Over the weekend, Several developers from the LA office, including Tyler Witkin, Jared Huckaby, Ben & Alexis Lesnick, Steve Bender, and myself went to a Bar Citizen hosted by some of the LA citizens. It was great to be able to meet some local citizens, and it was my first Bar Citizen since relocating to Los Angeles. I tricked Zyloh into eating a box of M&M’s mixed with Skittles. His reaction was great, but he gave me a terrible, scolding look the rest of the evening.

Let’s see what is going on this week:

Today’s Citizens of the Stars episode has Tyler Witkin introducing Jorunn, a man dedicated to the Bar Citizen movement around the globe. Then, Ben Lesnick puts Dennis Daniel, IT Manager for CIG LA in the hotseat for this week’s Quantum Questions. Learn what kind of machines we play Star Citizen here in the office, and learn the science (or magic?) used in communicating across five studios.

On Wednesday, our bi-weekly show “Bugsmashers!” is back! Bug hunter extraordinaire Mark Abent investigates why some players in Star Marine are able to travel extreme distances in the system after picking up a weapon. I think this is a bug I don’t want Mark to fix!

Thursday’s episode of Around the Verse visits our Manchester Studio, where we pull back the curtains and take a deeper look at Star Citizens development. This is my favorite studio update because of all the new artwork, and in-game footage Erin and the team always show us! Also, make sure to tune in for some exciting news about the Referral Program revamp! New rewards and a competition you won’t want to miss.

Star Citizen Alpha 2.6.2 introduced support for 4K extra-wide resolutions and TrackIR, and on this week’s Happy Hour Showcase, we’re excited to bring both of these to the broadcast. Join Community Manager Jared Huckaby and special guests, Senior Producer Eric Keiron Davis, LA QA Manager Vincent Sinatra, and community broadcaster DeejayKnight as they play Star Citizen live with the fans and answer your questions following Around the Verse the day before. The floor is open to questions this Friday at 12pm Pacific on twitch.tv/starcitizen.

See you in the ‘Verse!

Tyler Nolin
AKA Admiral Sloth
Community Manager

The Weekly Community Content Schedule

MONDAY, APRIL 10th, 2017
            Citizens of the Stars   (https://www.youtube.com/user/RobertsSpaceInd/) TUESDAY, APRIL 11th, 2017
            Weekly Lore Post   (https://robertsspaceindustries.com/comm-link/spectrum-dispatch) WEDNESDAY, APRIL 12th, 2017
            Bugsmashers!   (https://www.youtube.com/user/RobertsSpaceInd/) THURSDAY, APRIL 13th, 2017
            Around the Verse   (https://www.youtube.com/user/RobertsSpaceInd/)
            Vault Update    FRIDAY, APRIL 14th, 2017
            Happy Hour Gameplay – Noon PST (https://twitch.tv/starcitizen)
            RSI Newsletter
            Monthly Report

Community Spotlight: April 10th, 2017 – Bar Citizen

It’s no secret that the Star Citizen community is the best there is, the best there was, and the best there ever will be! For years, the community has taken it upon themselves to organize regular Bar Citizen events, providing an opportunity for Citizens around the world to meet up, make friends, and talk shop. In our opinion, this level of camaraderie is unparalleled, and we could not be more excited about it.

Below you will find a few of the recent Bar Citizens that took place, and remember, you can visit the community created website barcitizen.sc to find out if there is an event in your area!

Visit BarCitizen.sc




Los Angeles, California

Organized by Wolf Larsen, Star Citizens and CIG staff met up for drinks, fish and chips, and good times!

Atlanta, Georgia

Organized by Chanticrow! Is that a webcam I see set up at the table? We would love to see that footage! Looks like a great event!


Houston, Texas

Organized by Modern Man and Anchor, this Bar Citizen event looked like a fantastic time with some familiar faces!

Ixelles, Belgium

Organized by TradTeam, this event just leaves you jealous that you were not there. Great event y’all!

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Citizens of the Stars

Mon, 04/10/2017 - 12:04
Welcome to Citizens of the Stars, our new weekly program exclusively about you, the Star Citizen Community. Whether through bug reports on the issue council, feedback on the forums, or the creation of content inspired by the game, Star Citizen is only possible because of the community. Citizens of the Stars not only highlights these contributions, but also puts a dev in the hotseat for a round of Quantum Questions, which addresses some fun facts about the dev and game. Jorunn is in the Citizen Spotlight to talk everything Bar Citizen. Can IT Manager Dennis Daniel become the new Quantum Questions champion?

Remember, many of the questions used are taken from our Star Citizen Subscribers in this thread here. Don’t forget to add yours for inclusion in future episodes, vote for the ones you want to see answered, and remember to keep them short and concise if you want your best chance of having them answered in under two minutes.

The links for this week’s content are below:

Gloria Theater Tickets Announcement

Fri, 04/07/2017 - 16:39
Star Citizen is back at GamesCom and Gloria Theater for 2947! The Fifth Annual Star Citizen Gamescom Party!

For those of you who joined us in Cologne last year, you will be happy to hear that our plans for this year are very similar at this stage. Gamescom runs from 21st through 26th August. We will have a fun and interactive booth in the game halls, opportunities to meet the team in the evenings, and a live show at Gloria Theater on the Friday 25th. Join your host Chris Roberts as we showcase some of what we’ve been working on this year, and deliver some never-seen-before gameplay!

Ticket Details

The 750 tickets for Gloria Theater are €30 each and will go on sale with the following format:

  • Saturday 22nd April 7PM CEST: 200 Tickets available to Concierge and Subscribers only
  • Saturday 22nd April 11PM CEST: 175 Tickets available to Concierge and Subscribers only
  • Sunday 23rd April 7PM CEST: 200 tickets available to all backers
  • Sunday 23rd April 11pm CEST: The remaining 175 Tickets available to all backers.

The show will start in the evening on the Friday, with timings to be confirmed closer to the date.

Tickets will be available here:

When & Where

Friday, August 25th – Times to be confirmed closer to the event.

Gloria Theater, Apostelnstrasse 11, 50667 Köln.

Space is limited, so be sure you get your tickets fast! This will be an evening event, going through until late.

- Frequently Asked Questions Parking

There are many car parks close by and within walking distance from Gloria. Top 3 below:

  • Parkhaus Wolfsstraße:
    • Open: Mon-Sun 24 hours
    • Address: Wolfsstraße 6, 50667 Köln
  • Gertruden-Parkhaus:
    • Open: Mon-Sun until 1am
    • Address Breite Straße 169-177, 50667 Köln
  • Parkhaus Bazaar de Cologne:
    • Open: Mon-Sun until 1am
    • Address: Große Brinkgasse 5, 50672 Köln

Additional parking available on the street, with a parking ticket necessary until 11pm.

What to Bring

PLEASE remember to bring your printed ticket or a digital copy stored on your phone in addition to your photo ID. If you have a Citizen Card or any Star Citizen clothing, bring it (cosplay encouraged).

There is a bar at the venue for drinks, and a small selection of snacks available from the café. Attendees are highly encouraged to eat meals prior to the show.

Each year, fans have kindly offered gifts for the team. Unfortunately, since many of us are flying back to the United States the next day we are unable to accept anything at the event. We truly appreciate the thought, though!

Is the Gloria Theatre wheelchair accessible?

Wheelchairs should be pre-registered with us by entering a support ticket (link to Contact Us) to ensure suitable entry is available for the event. The hall is located on the ground floor of the theater. While wheelchair users will be given priority access, it is worth noting there are no disabled toilets on the premises; however, these can be found in public buildings in the neighbourhood.

Central Library
Josef-Haubrish-Hof 1
50676 Koln
http://www.stadt-koeln.de/leben-in-koeln/stadtbibliothek/

Can I bring my own food and drink?

No, this is not allowed for the venue – Please stop by one of the traditional German restaurants nearby before the event.

Will there be seating available?

No, this will be a standing event.

Is there an age restriction for the venue?

Yes, the event is 18+

Can people bring their own seating for the wait?

You may bring a small foldable seat to use while outside the theater, however use of them inside the premises is prohibited, so you would need to use the coat check once inside. Please only bring what you’ll need with you to the event, as well as your Star Citizen merchandise!

Is there a Coat Check?

Attendees will be encouraged to store their belongings in the visitor’s cloakroom. Coats, jackets, bags, umbrellas etc., may be asked to be checked if they are large; with deference to everyone’s safety and ease of access. This storage costs €1.50 per ticket (Remember to keep this safe!)

Does my ticket also grant me access to Gamescom?

No, you will need to purchase a separate ticket to attend Gamescom at Koelnmesse. Our party at Gloria Theater does not require you to attend Gamescom. They are separate events.

Please visit the GamesCom Website for their tickets.

What do I do before the show?

Rather than queuing up for hours beforehand, we encourage backers to meet up nearby. Keep an eye on Spectrum for posts on this topic closer to the event date.

If there are unsold tickets from Saturday 22nd, will they be available to all backers when tickets are added on the 23rd?

Yes. On Sunday 23rd the ability to purchase tickets will be unlocked to all backers, which will include any previously unsold tickets.

Stay In The Loop!

Look out for latest news, contests, and additional information about where Chris and the team will be during Gamescom. Whether you’re with us in Germany, or back at home, keep up to date with all things Star Citizen by following our various channels on social media:

Gamescom and Gloria Theater Tickets Announcement

Fri, 04/07/2017 - 16:39
Star Citizen is back at GamesCom and Gloria Theater for 2947! The Fifth Annual Star Citizen Gamescom Party!

For those of you who joined us in Cologne last year, you will be happy to hear that our plans for this year are very similar at this stage. Gamescom runs from 21st through 26th August. We will have a fun and interactive booth in the game halls, opportunities to meet the team in the evenings, and a live show at Gloria Theater on the Friday 25th. Join your host Chris Roberts as we showcase some of what we’ve been working on this year, and deliver some never-seen-before gameplay!

Ticket Details

The 750 tickets for Gloria Theater are €30 each and will go on sale with the following format:

  • Saturday 22nd April 7PM CEST: 200 Tickets available to Concierge and Subscribers only
  • Saturday 22nd April 11PM CEST: 175 Tickets available to Concierge and Subscribers only
  • Sunday 23rd April 7PM CEST: 200 tickets available to all backers
  • Sunday 23rd April 11pm CEST: The remaining 175 Tickets available to all backers.

The show will start in the evening on the Friday, with timings to be confirmed closer to the date.

Tickets will be available here:

When & Where

Gloria Theater, Apostelnstrasse 11, 50667 Köln.

Space is limited, so be sure you get your tickets fast! This will be an evening event, going through until late. Times to be confirmed closer to the event.

- Frequently Asked Questions Parking

There are many car parks close by and within walking distance from Gloria. Top 3 below:

  • Parkhaus Wolfsstraße:
    • Open: Mon-Sun 24 hours
    • Address: Wolfsstraße 6, 50667 Köln
  • Gertruden-Parkhaus:
    • Open: Mon-Sun until 1am
    • Address Breite Straße 169-177, 50667 Köln
  • Parkhaus Bazaar de Cologne:
    • Open: Mon-Sun until 1am
    • Address: Große Brinkgasse 5, 50672 Köln

Additional parking available on the street, with a parking ticket necessary until 11pm.

What to Bring

PLEASE remember to bring your printed ticket or a digital copy stored on your phone in addition to your photo ID. If you have a Citizen Card or any Star Citizen clothing, bring it (cosplay encouraged).

There is a bar at the venue for drinks, and a small selection of snacks available from the café. Attendees are highly encouraged to eat meals prior to the show.

Each year, fans have kindly offered gifts for the team. Unfortunately, since many of us are flying back to the United States the next day we are unable to accept anything at the event. We truly appreciate the thought, though!

Is the Gloria Theatre wheelchair accessible?

Wheelchairs should be pre-registered with us by entering a support ticket (link to Contact Us) to ensure suitable entry is available for the event. The hall is located on the ground floor of the theater. While wheelchair users will be given priority access, it is worth noting there are no disabled toilets on the premises; however, these can be found in public buildings in the neighbourhood.

Central Library
Josef-Haubrish-Hof 1
50676 Koln
http://www.stadt-koeln.de/leben-in-koeln/stadtbibliothek/

Can I bring my own food and drink?

No, this is not allowed for the venue – Please stop by one of the traditional German restaurants nearby before the event.

Will there be seating available?

No, this will be a standing event.

Is there an age restriction for the venue?

Yes, the event is 18+

Can people bring their own seating for the wait?

You may bring a small foldable seat to use while outside the theater, however use of them inside the premises is prohibited, so you would need to use the coat check once inside. Please only bring what you’ll need with you to the event, as well as your Star Citizen merchandise!

Is there a Coat Check?

Attendees will be encouraged to store their belongings in the visitor’s cloakroom. Coats, jackets, bags, umbrellas etc., may be asked to be checked if they are large; with deference to everyone’s safety and ease of access. This storage costs €1.50 per ticket (Remember to keep this safe!)

Does my ticket also grant me access to Gamescom?

No, you will need to purchase a separate ticket to attend Gamescom at Koelnmesse. Our party at Gloria Theater does not require you to attend Gamescom. They are separate events.

Please visit the GamesCom Website for their tickets.

What do I do before the show?

Rather than queuing up for hours beforehand, we encourage backers to meet up nearby. Keep an eye on Spectrum for posts on this topic closer to the event date.

If there are unsold tickets from Saturday 22nd, will they be available to all backers when tickets are added on the 23rd?

Yes. On Sunday 23rd the ability to purchase tickets will be unlocked to all backers, which will include any previously unsold tickets.

Stay In The Loop!

Look out for latest news, contests, and additional information about where Chris and the team will be during Gamescom. Whether you’re with us in Germany, or back at home, keep up to date with all things Star Citizen by following our various channels on social media:

Around the Verse

Thu, 04/06/2017 - 12:08
Chris Roberts and Eric Kieron Davis share the recent Drake Interplanetary controversy. Learn about the upcoming planetary outposts and hear the latest from the Austin and Turbulent offices.

And for info on becoming a subscriber, go to: https://robertsspaceindustries.com/pledge/subscriptions

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