(updated March 30, 2015) 

Welcome to the future!

This is a whole new direction for me, so I wanted to give my Star Citizen Journal a completely unique look (and feel). I'll still update other parts of my website, but I'm going to be focusing mainly on Star Citizen from now on. [Note: as I posted in my home page's Time for a New Focus column, I also considered Elite Dangerous, but I just don't have the time to cover both games. I've been following Star Citizen's development since October 2012, so I decided to stick with the one that I was the most familiar with. We're very fortunate to have two space sims of this caliber being developed right now.]

I'm hoping that many of you will want to join me in this new adventure . . .

 

 

Latest Journal News

March 30:

  • Minor updates, mainly due to recent additions and changes/clarefications from CIG.

February 23:

  • Made some minor updates (reflecting my recent CCU to a Cutlass Red).
  • Expanded the Role Playing section, to include my Firefly Starship Dream . . . with a video.

January 24:

  • Made it through my first Cross-Chassis Upgrade. The CCU process is way more complicated than it should be, but I was able to eventually end up where I wanted to be. [Why can't we just select the ship we want to upgrade to, and then select the ship we want to trade in?] I had to figure out a convoluted upgrade path and then upgrade one step at a time, which meant going through the entire process 3 times . . . upgraded my Aurora LX anniversary edition to a 300i, then upgraded the 300i to a Hornet F7C; then upgraded the Hornet to a Cutlass Red (with my Aurora's 2-year insurance). ] I'm enjoying my Cutlass, but it is very awkward to fly (turns very slowly and handles like a barge), so it is nearly useless in combat. But as soon as the Freelancer DUR is flyable, I'll happily CCU my Cutlass Red for it.
  • My CCUs also came with the additional bonus that I now have my choice of 4 different hangars. This is because each upgrade increased the total amount of what I have pledged as a backer, and backing for a higher level ship, like the Cutlass includes a hanger upgrade. The cool thing is that I can switch back and forth between hangers as much as I like.
  • I'll be adding screenshots of my Cutlass Read and my new hangars in the near future. I'm currently downloading the entire 20GB AC, as I was an alpha tester for the latest AC patch, so I had to download the entire AC again.
  • Added the official "Imagine" video (see below a bit), and a few new videos to the Links sections.

January 02:

  • Added more in the Flight section, including what six-degrees of freedom actually means (and how I have my HOTAS set up for 6DoF).

Latest Star Citizen News

March 20:

  • Arena Commander was updated to Star Citizen 1.1 [Link to full patch notes]
  • The Aegis Dynamics Retaliator is now Hangar ready
  • The Gladius light fighter is now flyable in Arena Commander.

February 19

 

Flying my updated Origin 315p in Arena Commander

October 29, 2014: I've been following Star Citizen since I first heard about it, way back in early 2012 and I enlisted (registered) on the RSI Community Forums on October 2, 2012 (ArwenEve, UEE Citizen Record #26,883), so I'm one of the earlier Star Citizens, (today there are 635,173 Citizens). But I remained a silent member of the forum for two years, and just quietly watched the early development from a distance. From the very beginning, I really liked the concept of the game, but I felt that it was way too ambitious in scope, and I was concerned that the game would would never become the game I was hoping for.

The truth was, as much as I love games, I had become a pretty jaded PC gamer. Over the years I had believed too many game developers and had swallowed their hype during the game's development, only to have all my hope shattered when the released version of the game was only a shadow of what I had expected. Plus, I was trying to pay off some medical expenses, and save up enough to replace my old computer until mid 2013, so I couldn't really afford to invest anything in a game that was still in early development. But I sill occasionally visited the official site so that I could follow Star Citizen's development. The turning point for me came a few weeks ago, when I saw how large the development team had become, and I listed to how passionate the team was. For the first time I began to have faith in Roberts Space Industries (RSI, the developer) and I let myself finally get excited about Star Citizen. Now I wish I had become actively involved much sooner.

I've always loved Star Trek, so I thought that the following video was a good way to show the faith that I now have in RSI, and in the future for PC games . . . may Star Citizen live long and prosper . . .

 
 

I finally became a Star Citizen Backer on October 9, 2014 (almost exactly two years after the their initial Kickstarter funding began). This was my first crowd funded pledge EVER, so I spent days trying to figure out how all this worked and then I spent hours more trying to decide what ship package to get. Once I knew what I wanted (within my very limited budget), I took a breath and made my Star Citizen Pledge.  Now I'm actually playing the beta game, which currently just includes my Self-Land Hangar module (where I can visit my ship) and the Arena Commander module (where I get to practice flying a few of the ships in races and in combat).

I hope you enjoy this journal, and that it gives you a better idea about this game. This is just a small part of all I've learned about Star Citizen, as there is a huge amount of information that has been generated about this game. The problem is actually that there is too much information, which can make it very difficult for anyone not very familiar with Star Citizen to understand all the various elements, or how they will eventually be combined to work together in the released game.

My goal at this point is to provide a basic background about Star Citizen . . which includes the parts that I'm currently playing, but also the parts that are still just promises. Most of the information that I've posted here came directly from the Star Citizen official website, but some came from developer chats and interviews. The images I've posted are a combination of in-game screenshots and developer concept art. I hope that this journal will give others a better understanding of this game.

IMPORTANT! Star Citizen is still in early development . . . the Hangar Module and the Arena Commander are both still in alpha; and everything else is in pre-alpha or still just in the planning phase. So some of what I've covered here may end up changing quite a bit before the Star Citizen is released (and some features may not make it into the released game, but will be added sometime later).

Once the game is released, I plan on writing a fantasy story about my character's adventures in the Star Citizen universe. For the first time ever, I'll be writing a story about my experiences in a multi-player game, so I'll be including my interactions with other player characters for the first time. Perhaps I'll meet you out there in the 'Verse' somewhere, and your character will have a part in my story.

 
My updated Origin 315p Explorer in my hangar

Updated 01.24.15:  I did my first Cross-Chassis Upgraded (CCU) by upgrading .my Aurora LX anniversary edition (my second ship) to a Cutlass Red (which retained my Aurora's 2-year insurance). I'm enjoying my larger ship, but the Cutlass is very awkward to fly (turns very slowly and handles like a barge), so it is nearly useless in combat. But as soon as the Freelancer DUR is flyable, I'll happily CCU my Cutlass Red for it. My CCUs also came with the additional bonus that I now have my choice of 4 different hangars. This is because I had to go through a number of CCUs and backing for a higher level ship, like the Cutlass includes a hanger upgrade. The cool thing is that I can switch back and forth between hangers as much as I like.

I had bought my RSI Aurora LX Anniversary Edition on 11/22/14. My original pledge package included the Origin 315p Explorer, which is a single crew vessel, set up for exploration. It is compact and fast, with a touch of luxury . . . like a sports car. The 315p was my second choice, as I really wanted the MISC Freelancer, but that was a bit more than my budget could handle. I was initially planning on upgrading my 315p to a Freelancer, but I really like this ship, so I bought an Aurora LX, with the plan to upgrade it to a Freelancer DUR. Now I'm nearly there, as I just have to wait until the Freelancer DUR is a flyable ship in Arena Commande. Then I will be able to purchase a cross-chassis upgrade (for like $5) from my Cutlass Red to a Freelancer DUR. Until then, I'm going to enjoy both my 315p and my Cutlass Red. [Note: Currently there's just this one generic (male) character for all players, but full character customization will be in the released game.]

 
Taking my new Cutlass out for a test flight in Arena Commander's Dying Star
(I currently own a Cutlass Red, but only the Black version is available in AC right now.)
 
 
 

What is Star Citizen?

Star Citizen is the most popular crowd funded project in history (it is in the Guinness Book of World Records), and there's no end in sight. During CitizenCon 2014 (Star Citizen 2nd anniversary, October 11-12) they hit both the $57 and the $58 million crowd funding marks in a single weekend. You don't have to make a pledge . . . you can just wait until the game is released (sometime in 2016). But if want to get involved early, and experience portions of the game while it is being developed, you can make a pledge that also includes access to the beta version of the game (there are no more slots left for alpha access).

Star Citizen is a PC Space Sim. That is what Chris Roberts calls it.  But what is Star Citizen all about? It is expected to be unlike any other game that has every been released. It a combination Spaceship Combat Flightsim, Role Playing Game, trading game, First Person Shooter, plus a whole lot more. The game's sandbox covers a virtual universe, with a mixture of real and fictional systems in the Milky Way galaxy (initially starting with 100 star systems, and expanding to over more system after the game is released). So, you're going to be spending a LOT of time in spaceships (usually flying one), as space flight is the primary focus of this game. The game involves way more than just flying a spaceship, but if you have no interest in owning and piloting spaceships (which means actually controlling your ship, and dealing with at least a fair amount of space combat), then this is probably not a game you would enjoy playing.

Star Citizen is being developed as two projects, that will be seamlessly combined in the released game:
1.) Squadron 42 is the single-player, Wing Commander style campaign, but it also, which includes some optional co-op game play (for instance, another player can play the role of your wingman, taking the place of your NPC wingman). When you see people discussing S42, they are referring to this part of the game. This is where you create you character, and it also acts as the game's tutorial (through training missions). Once you have created your character, and taken care of some basic stuff, you are not forced to complete the full campaign before you can move on to the persistent universe part of the game. [See Role-Playing Freedom for more on this.]
2.) Star Citizen is the multi-player persistent universe online game, which is populated by both real players and NPCs. There will be a slider, that allows you to alter the ratio of Player vs. Player and Player vs. NPC encounters . . . but you will always encounter a mixture of other players and NPCs. When you encounter another character, it may be very difficult to tell if that character is another player or an NPC (a computer generated AI character). [See PvP/PvE slider for more.]

You create your character, like other RPGs, but you NEVER level up. Instead, your ships sort of level up, as you upgrade them (or replace them with better ones). But your game still centers around your character. Your ships, their upgrades, and your cargo are all just assets . . . assets that can be lost (how much you lose when a ship is destroyed or stolen depends on how much of it is insured). Unlike most RPGs, your character is not immortal, as this game includes perma death, where your assets go to your beneficiary (your new character). Plus your non-fatal injuries are also persistent (you might get combat scars, bionic limbs, etc.). And you can pretty much take any path that you want. You can be a pirate, a bounty hunter, an explorer, a merchant . . . just about anything (and you can switch paths at any time). Plus there are player Groups (which are like Guilds) and Corporations that you can join (or you can create your own, or you can go it alone). 

 

Trying out my Origin 315P's comfy seat (currently my ship is grounded to my hangar, but I should be able to fly it real soon).

Some Star Citizen Terms and Acronyms:

  • AC - Arena Commander: This is the in-game flight simulator module, where you can practice flying ships, in races and in combat. [Originally called the Dogfighting Module (DFM).]

  • CCU - Cross-Chassis Upgrade: Allows you to upgrade an existing pledge ship and retain your extended insurance. [Also allows you to retain your Alpha Access, if that was part of your original ship's package.] To do a CCU upgrade, both the ship you are upgrading from and the ship you are upgrading to must be flight-ready (flyable in AC); AND the ship you are upgrading to costs more than the one you are upgrading from; andAND the ship you are upgrading to is available for purchase in the pledge store.

  • CIG - Cloud Imperium Games: the real-world parent company of RSI.

  • Instances: Star Citizen’s multiplayer design combines a persistent universe on a single server (the "Galaxy Server") with temporary multiplayer “battle” instances. See Chris Roberts on Multiplayer, Single Player and Instancing. Note: even though these are generally referred to as "battle" instances, an instance does not have to involve combat. There will be Orbital Instances, around planets (and space stations, etc.) that have a lot of traffic. There will also be landing zones instances and other planet/station instances.

  • LTI - Lifetime Insurance: An early pledge reward, that came with some early ship packages. If you own a ship that has LTI, you won't ever have to spend UEC (game currency) to insure that ship's hull. Replaces your ship hull in the event of destruction or theft. Note that LTI only covers that specific ship's hull . . . you still have to pay for any insurance to cover that ship's cargo and/or that shop's upgrades.

  • PvP/PvE slider - game setting slider that adjusts the ratio between Player vs. other Players AND Player vs. NPCs encounters in the PU. It is my understanding that this only has an affect in determining which instance you enter, when you encounter an area that contains multiple instances. For example: if an area of space has 80 players in it, and 60 are in instance A, while 20 are in instance B, having your slider set towards PVE will place you into instance B.

  • PU - Star Citizen Persistent Universe: the multiplayer part of the game (this is the main Star Citizen game).

  • REC - Rental Equipment Credits: game money/credits that you earn/spend in AC.

  • RSI - Roberts Space Industries: The subsidiary/division of Cloud Imperium Games Corporation  . . . RSI is also the name of Star Citizen's official website. RSI is also a fictional in-game spaceship company, which has a large role in the game's lore (invented the quantum drive).

  • S42 - Squadron 42: the single player, Wing Commander style complete campaign, consisting of 50 missions (which is where you create your character); once you finish the campaign (or whenever you op out of it), you enter the PU part of the game.

  • SHI - Standard Hull Insurance: Exactly the same as Lifetime Insurance (LTI), except that it only lasts for a set period of time, so it must be renewed periodically with UEC (game currency). If you let your SHI lapse, you will not receive a ship replacement when your ship is destroyed or stolen. Insurance time is based on game time, and is only tracked while you are playing Star Citizen. Game Time will be faster than real time, and it is currently expected to be as much as 12X (when you play the game for 1 real hour, 12 hours passes in the game). If the game runs at 12X, 1 year insurance means that you would be able to play the game for 2 real hours a day, every single day for an entire year until your 1-year policy runs out. [365 days*24 hours = 8760 game hours/12 (1 real hour = 12 game hours) = 730 real hours/2 hours per day = 365 real days = 1 real year]

  • UEC - United Earth Credits: In-game currency, used to purchase ships, upgrades, insurance, etc.. You earn EEC during game play, such as selling goods or information.

  • UEE - United Empire of Earth: The governing body of all civilized human territories.

 

 

Why I'm excited about Star Citizen:

Why are so many people willing to spend so much money backing a game that won't be released until sometime in 2016? The average total pledge per backer is now over $100 ( US Dollars, as of Oct. 2014), which can be really hard to understand, since the game is expected to sell for about $60. The main reason why this crowd funding project has been so successful is that there are hundreds of thousands of gamers who believe enough in this game, that they are willing to help fund its development(of course there are also some rewards for being a backer, which I'll cover a bit later). When I saw these concept images (Sept. 2013), I began to really have faith that Star Citizen might be the game I was hoping for:

From Letter From the Chairman: ". . . first concept art of our female explorer. For our first female character we didn’t want a cheap pinup; we wanted a badass space explorer who can hold her own on the fringes of civilization!" [Link to a more recent concept image.]

Below are some of the reasons why I decided to support Star Citizen:

Credibility:

  • Star Citizen is TOTALLY funded by gamers like me, who have made pledges to support the development of this game. There is no outside publisher who is more interested in its shareholders than on what gamers want. In essence, the gamers are the shareholders. No publisher is going to force the developer to release Star Citizen before it is ready, or limit any of its content, just to maximize their profits.

  • Chris Roberts is creating this game, and this is not his first PC Space Sim . . . he created the Wing Commander (1990), the Privateer series (1993-94), Starlancer (2000), and Freelancer (2003). He then took a 10-year break from creating PC games, due to burnout (but also because the technology at the time was not capable of making the game that he want to make). The Star Citizen development team is the most open and transparent team I have ever followed. They actually listen to us and have made changes and additions to the game based on some of our feedback (we actually get to vote on some of the new content). Chris is passionate about Star Citizen, and so is his team. This is a PC game that is being made by PC gamers, who are creating a Space Sim that they all want to play. The development team, which is made up of a number of small studios, now numbers about 280 people (Oct 2014), spread over a bunch of small studios.

  • Development has been very transparent. I've been a beta tester on many games and the developers of Star Citizen have been more open and honest with their backers than what I have seen in most closed betas (where testers have to sign a non-disclosure agreement), and Star Citizen is an open alpha/beta.

  • CIG actually listens to its backers. Very early in development, since Star Citizen was planned to be mainly a combat game, with the emphasis on combat professions. Sure, you could spend some time exploring, but that was really planned to be a full-time profession. But then CIG did a survey and around 80% of backers said they wanted to explore, compared with roughly 40% who were more interested in combat. After Chris Roberts saw those numbers he started to expand the non-combat aspects of the game, so we'll now have as much freedom to be an Explorer (or a merchant), as we have to be a Mercenary or a Bounty Hunter.

  • I made a Pledge and become a Backer because I believe in Star Citizen, and I wanted to support the development of this game. I would never have supported Star Citizen if I had not felt that the developer's goals were credible. The team seems to have one goal . . . to make the best Space Sim game possible, and I wanted to get on board so that I could begin to experience this journey.

Terra Landing (concept)

Realism:

  • Star Citizen is being developed exclusively for computers, with its maximum settings aimed at high end gaming PCs. Chris Roberts has stated from the very beginning the Star Citizen is a Computer Game, and that this game will never be 'dumbed down' for consoles (his quote). This is the first things that got me interested in the game. I'm so sick of playing RPGs that were developed for consoles, where PC players are forced to mod the game, just to get a decent PC-scaled user interface, or to make the mouse work correctly, or to get decent looking graphics. It is so refreshing to see a game being developed for computers, which is not being held back by consoles.

  • Detail and graphics: detail is as much as 10 times higher (10x more polygons) than many other current top games. The Cry3 Engine has been heavily modified so that it can cover the vastness of this game, and still retain it realistic appearance. This includes converting from the original 32-bit Cry3 Engine to Star Citizen's 64-bit version.

  • Newtonian Physics model: Mass, force, and energy all have real effects on how the ships move through space. The ships have a main engine (or engines, in the larger models), but they are also controlled by individual thrusters (my 315p has 12), which rotate to control your direction. This is all linked through a fly-by-wire computer system (which you can also disable); but you and can also control individual thrusters.

  • Realistic Ship Damage: Hull and shield strength fully modeled, and damage is not just based on percentage damaged. For instance, if a thruster is damaged, you will no longer be able to maneuver your ship as well. A new ship looks like it just came from the showroom, but it shows signs of wear as you use it.

  • Insurance Options: If your ship is destroyed (or stolen), you no longer have a ship. If you have purchased insurance on your ship, it will be replaced, but you will lose any cargo, and any ship upgrades (unless these items were also insured).

  • Realistic Injuries: If you get hurt in combat, your character gets lasting scars, and if a limb get damaged bad enough, you'll receive a bionic replacement. When you get hurt during combat, you may have to stop and treat your injuries in order to survive. If your legs are damaged, you will have to crawl. If an arm is damaged, you may not be able to hold your weapon. If you are hurt bad enough, you may pass out and wake up in a hospital ship . . . or you may end up dead. And all this is fully animated. For more on this, see Design: Healing Your Spacemen

  • Perma-Death: Your character only has so many virtual "lives" (severe injuries that they survive) . . . once they use up all their lives, your character dies and your assets go to your beneficiary, who becomes your new character, who retains a small portion of your reputation (good or bad). For more on this, see "Death of a Spaceman."

  • FPS Combat is only in 1st person, because 3rd person view is not realistic (it would allow the player to look around corners, while keeping their character hidden). Note: you will be able to switch to 3rd person in some areas, just not during actual FPS combat and exploration.

  • Immersion (aim is to make you feel like you are a space pilot): when you are sitting in the cockpit, your real actions (like moving your joystick or throttle) will be mirrored by your player character.

  • Economic Model: based on supply and demand. If a colony that produces an important mineral is attacked, that mineral will become scarce, which might affect the availability of something like missiles.

  • Effecting Meaningful Change: Even though the sandbox is huge, you character might still have a lasting effect on the game. For instance, if you are the first to discover a new system, you get to name that system.

  • Seamless transition from space sim flight to FPS game play: For instance you could fly your ship through space until you intercept another ship; then get up from your command seat, exit your ship, and jet pack over to the other ship and board it. Or land at a base, exit your ship, and walk around the base on foot.

Baker System (concept)

Scale:

  • Sandbox Size: 100 Star Systems on release, with more being added as needed. And these are not just a bunch of generic, procedurally generated systems, but are unique systems, with a lot of hand placed details. There are expected to be 800 places you can land/dock within the initial 100 systems. And the 100 systems is just the starting point, and will grow as the game is updated. Star Citizen is an ever expanding virtual world/universe, with an estimated 10 year plan for growth. In an interview with Polygon (11.11.14), Tony Zurovec, director of PU, stated: "The plan is for the Star Citizen universe to be absolutely enormous, but that's a long-term goal. Over 400 star systems are currently envisioned, most of which will have a variety of planets."

  • Space is huge . . . as in the hard-to-wrap-my-brain-around huge. The Star Citizen universe will be somewhat compressed, so our solar system won't be done on a true 1:1 scale, but is expected to be 1:8 scale. The speed of light is denoted as c (1.0c = 186,000 miles per second), and in Star Citizen, cruise speed (or fast travel speed) is expected to be 0.2c. At 0.2c, it would take 20-30 minutes to cross our solar system, if it was at 1:8 scale (the system is an ellipse, so it depends where/when your are crossing it). The fastest ship in the game is expected to travel at 300 meters per second (in normal travel mode) . . . at that speed it would take you 249,000 days to cross our solar system (based on a 30 minute crossing time at 0.2c).

  • Huge Range of Scale: This doesn't mean that you're looking at unapproachable backgrounds; the largest carriers are over 2 kilometers in length, and you can walk through them. The same is true for Shubin Mining Base, which is even larger . . .  around 6km long. (The base is also the setting for some of Squadron 42's missions.) Plus there will be planets that you can land on. And all these locations will include areas that you can explore on foot.

  • Squadron 42 and Star Citizen are connected: I really like the fact that you begin the game in a single player campaign and that your actions have some effect on how you start out in the multiplayer persistent universe. The character that you create in S42, is your initial Star Citizen. And S42 is much more than just a tutorial. It is currently planned to consist of 50 missions, and the full campaign is estimated to take 50 to 100 hours to complete (which is longer than many full games). If you don't want to complete the full campaign, you can move on to the multiplayer game, but you will have to take out a loan to purchase a ship. (At the end of the campaign, you should have enough UEC to purchase an entry-level ship to start Star Citizen with.)

Longevity (replay value):

  • There will be NO subscription fees . . . once you buy the game, it is free to play. Plus the developer plans to continue improving and adding to the game well after it is released (initially planning on bi-weekly FREE updates). This includes adding and changing game content . . . for instance, not all the Stretch Goals rewards are going to be ready by the time that the game is released.

  • Squadron 42 Single player campaign includes an optional coop mode, where your friends can replace your NPC wingman, And Star Citizen's PU multi-player also includes coop, where other players can work together on the larger ships.

  • Player Mods; with the ability for modders to host their own private servers. And the best mods might be added to the main game (like a player-created ship).

Customization:

  • Character Choice: be whomever you want to be, and go wherever you want to go. Plus you can change careers at any point (a merchant can become a pirate, or an explorer). Includes being able to customize your character's appearance (and gender), and purchase a variety outfits.

  • In-Depth Ship customization: with different load outs and upgrades, plus there are plans to for custom paint schemes.

Goss II Cassel Landing (concept)

Combines best of single and multi-player:

  • The developer has focused on making a MMO, where the game itself makes it difficult to exploit the game play (through more severe consequences for your actions). I've never been interested in multi-player games, because they always  seem to get out of control, there are way too many really annoying individuals, and players often band together to control parts of the game. The fact that this is a massive  multi-player game (MMO) was the main reason that I didn't support Star Citizen sooner. But then I learned that this game is being designed in a manner that should minimize the types of disruptive behavior that often plagues other MMOs.

  • Chris Roberts on Multiplayer, Single Player, and Instancing: "I wanted to combine things I like about the promise of a MMO, but avoid the aspects that I’m not so keen on like splintered player groups, griefing and grinding."

  • In 10 For the Chairman - Episode 42 (10.20.14): Chris Roberts stated that "the player base is only ever going to make up at most 10% of the population of any given place, and what's happening in the economy etc., so in terms of being able to dramatically affect an area or economy, it's going to be pretty hard." He also says, "because we have such high fidelity, we can't have too many people in one particular instance [snip], even with a best case scenario at the moment of 50-100 players, there are only so many people that can be crammed into one instance." Plus matchmaking will limit a group, like an Organization, to a maximum percentage of any battle instance.

  • Plus, individuals who become too disruptive will have a bounty put on them (making them a target for the game's bounty hunters, which include NPCs as well as real player). My hope is that this mixture of NPCs and player controlled characters will make the game feel much more realistic, than if it was just a single player game.

  • Your success in combat is going to depend as much on your strategic decisions and your skill with a space fighter, as it will with your ship upgrades and how much real money you spend (pay to win). For instance, you could spend a lot of real money and  enter the game with one of the best ships; but if you're not a very good pilot, you're not going to be very successful.

A Bit More about Pledges (and why it took me so long)

The image above shows Star Citizen's live stats on 10.30.14. Star Citizens are the number RSI forum accounts. What the UEE Fleet number comes from is not certain; it could perhaps be the user accounts with access to Arena Commander, but the Fleet number is generally accepted to be the total number of ships that have been sold (either as part of a pledge package, or as a single ship purchase). Assuming the latter, if you take the Funds Raised to date ($59,091,194) and divide it by the number of ships, we get an average cost per ship of just over $120. The majority of Backers have spent less than half that amount, by purchasing just one entry-level ship package (like the Aurora), but some Backers are buying multiple ships, including some very expensive models. A LOT of gamers have spent a LOT of money to fund Star Citizen . . . a game which will not be released until 2016. To better understand the reasons, you have to better understand Star Citizen's pledges.

  • Ok, so if this new game is going to be so wonderful, why did it take me so long to support it? Yes, I followed Star Citizen for two years until I finally had the courage to purchase a pledge package. The truth was that the only thing keeping me from making a pledge, back in 2012, was fear. I am pretty conservative when it comes to purchasing games. Skyrim was the last game that I preordered, and that didn't work out so well for me (Skyrim isn't a bad game, but I bought it long before I owned a computer that could run it well.) Since then, I have waited until the game's been out a while, and don't order anything that doesn't get good reviews (from other gamers). And then along comes Star Citizen. As much as I liked what I read about this game, I just did not have enough faith to pay for a game that 'might' be released in 3 or 4 years. Besides, back in 2012, I was trying to save up enough money so that I could purchase a new computer.

  • Making a pledge was something I was just not comfortable with. What if I spent money for a pledge, and then the game was never released? The answer is that I would have spent money for a promise that was never delivered. I had to get to the point where I actually believed that RSI would be able to release the game they were advertising. That finally happened in early October. I'm happy with my decision, but I'm not going to try to convince you to make a pledge for Star Citizen. The safest way is to wait until after the game is released, and then see how well it is accepted. Until the game is released, the main purpose of this journal is to provide some information about Star Citizen . . . and this includes explaining how pledging works, so that you can decide for yourself.

  • Pledge Rule Number One: Never pledge more money than you can afford to lose. Making a pledge for Star Citizen is a gamble, as there is no guarantee that any game that is being developed will actually be finished, or that the finished product will meet your expectations.

  • Rule Number Two: The main reason anyone should make a pledge is because they want to support a game that they believe in . . . what they get in return is given as a token of thanks from the developer (such as a better ship).

  • Assuming that Star Citizen is finished and released as planned, generally speaking, the sooner you make a pledge, the greater the rewards (and the less it will cost). Star Citizen will likely retail for around $60, and the least expensive pledge still only costs half that much. The $30 pledge package includes an Aurora MR starter ship, along with the digital version of the full game (and a few other tokens) . . . but this package doesn't include any Beta Access to the game, so you won't have any early access to the game. The least expensive way to gain Beta Access is with the $40 Aurors MR Plus package. [Remember, as I mentioned earlier, there are no longer any packages that include Alpha Access, but you can purchase a pass for some modules. For instance, I was able to purchase an Arena Commander Pass for $5.]

  • Melt Down Option: This is something that most outsiders are not aware of (I didn't know about this until after I had made my pledge). When you make a pledge, you are not stuck with your ship/package. You can trade in your ship for a better model, and the trade in value of your ship/package is exactly what you paid for it. For instance, if you made a $40 pledge for the Aurora MR, and later decide that you really want the $80 Origin 325 A Fighter Package; you can "Melt Down" your Aurora Package, receive a $40 credit, and then apply that credit towards the cost of the 325A Package . . . so you only have to pay the difference ($40 in this case) to upgrade to a better package. [Of course you also have the option of keeping your Aurora Package, and buying the 325A stand alone ship for $70 (since you already own a game package). Then you would being entering the game with both ships.]

  • Alpha and Beta Access: This is essentially early access to the game. The full game will not be playable until it is released in 2016, but Backers do get early access to some of the modules during Star Citizen's development. I currently have access to the Hangar and Arena Commander modules. Go to The Modules section for more info on the modules.

Asteroid Hangar (concept)

 

Star Citizen Development

System Requirements:

  • Minimum System Requirements (August 2013, given for the Hangar Module)
    Note: If your system just meets the minimum requirements, you will have to run at the game's minimum graphic setting, and your game play still won't likely be smooth during combat. Also these are estimated system requirements and may change by the time the game is released.
    OS: Windows Vista, Windows 7 or Windows 8
    CPU: Dual Core CPU Intel: Core2 Duo 2.4Ghz AMD: Phenom X2
    GPU: NVidia Geforce 460GTX AMD Radeon HD5850 DirectX 11
    RAM: 8GB of system memory
    Internet connection: The PU part of the game can only be played online (unless you set up your own server version of the game). Squadron 42 will be playable offline, unless you want to use the optional coop game play.

  • Recommended Requirements (should give you decent graphics and a good gaming experience):
    Intel i5 2500, i7 2600, 2700 or better with a GTX 670 or greater

  • To run at Maximum settings at 1080p: a R9 290x or GTX 780 will be required.

  • To run at 4K: a pair of mid-high end cards in SLI (680/770 or 7970/280x or better) or a single very high end card (GTX 980 Ti or R9 390x etc.) will be required.

OriginM-50 Interceptor (AC screenshot)

Developer and studios:

The Developer is Roberts Space Industries (part of Cloud Imperial Games); but Star Citizen is the combined effort of several studios, in the UK, the United States, and Canada. Each studio is working on a different aspect of Star Citizen:

Cloud Imperium Game Studios:

Independent Studios (the ones that I've been able to confirm so far):

Development Milestones:


In AC 1.0, my pilot can do a basic EVA (space walk) after ejecting, and now has a working laser handgun.
  • April 2012 - Chris Roberts (with his business partner, Ortwin Freyermuth) founds Cloud Imperium Games Corporation to make Star Citizen.

  • August 10, 2012 - Chris Roberts announces Star Citizen game at GDC Online conference in Austin, TX.

  • September 10, 2012 - The Star Citizen website is launched.

  • October 18, 2012 - Chris Roberts launches Kickstarter campaign for Star Citizen, with a funding goal of $2 million.

  • October 25, 2012 - Pledges hit $2 million. Star Citizen is successfully funded (but an outside developer is still needed).

  • November 19, 2012 - End of Kickstarter Campaign, with $2,134,374 pledged. Crowd funding continues on RSI Webpage.

  • August 29, 2013 - Hangar module beta released to Backers (initially only for Aurora MR, Origin 300i, Hornet, Freelancer and Constellation).

  • September 1, 2014 - Arena Commander module (formerly called the Dogfighting module) beta released to Backers.

Platinum Bay Landing Zone (concept)

Future Roadmap (from PAX Australia Fan Event 11.01.14):

[Note: Dates are estimates so are subject to change!)

Late 2014:

  • Arena Commander 1.0 (single crew ship combat)

2015 (Approximate Order):

  • FPS Module

  • Planetside/Social Module Launch

  • Arena Commander 2.0 (multi-crew ship combat)

  • Squadron 42 - Chapter One

  • Planetside Expands to Persistent Universe Alpha

2016:

  1. Star Citizen is released

[Note: in Dec 2014 PC Gamer magazine article, Chris Roberts stated, "It'll be at least another 18 to 20 months before the game is ready for release . . ." So the earliest I would expect to see the released version would be Q4 2016.]

 

 

 

The Modules

NF-Astro Armada (concept)

Note: Star Citizen is being developed as a number of separate Alpha and/or Beta modules, which will all be combined together seamlessly before the game is released. There are a limited number of Alpha slots, and they were all full by the time that I became a Backer. But my Pledge Package does include Beta Access, and I also spent an additional $5 for an Arena Commander Pass.

Hangar Module: This is where you can view your ships (if you bought a ship package), which includes being able to enter them. Video on latest hangar update [08.15.14]: Star Citizen - Your New Hangar!

My package came with a Self-Land Hangar (Self-Land is a hangar manufacturer in the Star Citizen universe). As I understand it, if you buy an Aurora Package or an Origin 300 Package, you get a Self-Land Hangar. My hangar is one large bay (Bay A), with room for three of the smaller ships, but this hanger is modular, so it will automatically expand (with additional bays) as you add ships to your fleet.

Arena Commander [sill in Alpha]: This is an in-game flight simulator, where you can practice flight (in free flight mode); combat against AI ships or in against other players); or racing (single player time laps, or multplayer races). There are 2 small free-flight/combat maps, and 3 race courses. Since this is a training simulator, your character is not injured or killed when your ship crashes or explodes. Arena Commander V0.8 Launch Trailer

There were no Apha slots left by the time that I made my pledge, so I purchased an Arena Commander Pass for an additional $5. I haven't yet gotten up the courage to try multi-player in Arena Commander yet, but I'm working on it. Right now I'm just trying to figure out how to fly the 300i (which is my loaner ship until the 315p is flyable (which should be within a few weeks). Space ships sure are different than flying a little Cessna ... and I'm not use to getting shot at!

FPS Module [to be released in early 2015]: Like Arena Commander, this is an in-game training simulator. The FPS module is where you'll be able to practice FPS combat (on foot, with hand weapons). Combat will only take place in 1st person view, to prevent 3rd person camera cheats. There will be a lot more info on the FPS module at PAX Australia (11.01.14). Star Citizen - FPS Teaser

 

 

Game Lore

Fujin (concept)

Star Citizen is NOT Wing Commander Online (even though Squadron 42 is often referred to as "the next Wing Commander).Star Citizen is set in a totally different game universe, with its own unique lore . . . including its own unique alien civilizations. [Note: This is likely because EA owns the legal rights to Wing Commander.] The Star Citizen universe takes place in the year 2942 . . .  over 900 years in the future. This virtual game world is a a mixture of real and fictional systems in the Milky Way galaxy (initially starting with 100 star systems, which will be expanded after the game is released).

RSI has released an entire book's worth of detailed information, in several ongoing narrative stories, which can be found on their website. In this section, I'm only going to list Star Citizen's most important events, which will give you a little background on this game world's history.

Star Citizen Universe's Time Capsule [Source: RSI Spectrum Dispatch]:

  • 2075: Dr. Scott Childress and his team complete the first self-sustaining quantum drive engine, capable of achieving 1/100th the speed of light. For the first time, humanity could explore the solar system with unprecedented speed (voyages that had previously taken months could now be made in hours).

  • 2113: RSI develops the first Terraforming machine . . . a machine that can “process the atmosphere of a planet to convert it to a sustained oxygen environment, making it habitable for humans.”

  • 2120 – Mars is selected by the Governments of the World as the first Terraforming test on a planet.

  • 2125 - A technical glitch, blamed on the Terraforming AI, caused the breathable Martian atmosphere to become instable and collapse, which killed 4876 colonists/scientists. This became known as The Great Mars Tragedy.

  •  2140 – RSI introduced the Zeus, a 3 passenger, short-range model, as the first mass produced personal starship.

  • 2157 - Terraforming finally succeeds on Mars, and the planet is officially classified as an oxygen-sustaining environment. The colonization of Mars rapidly moves forward, and the first extraterrestrial human child (Abeni Okon) was born later that year.

  • 2214 - RSI announced the Poseidon, the next generation fusion engine, capable of achieving 1/10th the speed of light.

  • 2232 - The Artemis launches, with 5000 colonist on board in cryostasis), as the first starship to take humans beyond our solar system. Its 200 plus year voyage was to GJ667Cc, a Super-Earth planet. Artemis was the Greek Goddess of the hunt, but this Artemis' hunt was another tragic failure, as the huge starship and all 5000 souls disappeared. The ship's AI Core (named Janus) was blamed. Evidence of the ship and its crew were discovered centuries later on several distant worlds. [Read "The Lost Generation Series," part of RSI Spectrum Dispatch].

  • 2262 - the Goodman, a Type-IV cargo vessel, was the first of a number of ships that disappeared in an area of space that became known as the Neso Triangle, which was soon declared a no-fly zone.

  • 2271 - After years of study, Nick Croshaw discovers that the Neso Triangle anomaly was actually a gap in time/space. He became the first NavJumper, in turn becoming the first human to travel to another solar system, which was named the Croshaw system in his honor.

  • 2380 - Terraforming begins on some planets in the Croshaw System. Three more jump-points had been discovered (two in Croshaw, one in Sol). World leaders agree that a new level of unity is necessary for humanity’s successful expansion into new systems. . . the United Nations of Earth (UNE) is born.

  • 2438: We are not alone.

[more coming soon]


For an in depth look at Star Citizen Lore, watch Star Citizen Alpha Boot Camp's: "Lore of Star Citizen: Link to Part 1

For a more condensed recap of Star Citizen Lore, watch Game Lore : Star Citizen

 

 

Starship Flight

MISC Freelancer

Star Citizen is first and foremost a Starship Simulator, and realistic space flight is a VERY important aspect of this game. So this is something that you're going to have to get use to if you want to play Star Citizen. Controlling a spaceship can be rather difficult to get the hang of, so it helps if you understand a bit about how this is modeled (and then you put in a lot of time practicing).

If you're use to regular flightsims (the kind that simulate flight through air), you'll likely be able to catch on a bit faster. But space flight modeling in Star Citizen is a LOT more involved than just removing gravity from an atmospheric flight model. Space flight in this game is based on Newtonian Physics, 6-degees of freedom, and Fly-By-Wire (FBW = computer assisted flight). Ok, so what does all that mean?

The Six Degrees of Freedom (6DoF) [with my HOTAS settings]:

1 - Pitch (rotate around y) [joystick y-axis (forward/back)]

2 - Roll (rotate around x) [joystick x-axis (left/right)]

3 - Yaw (rotate around z) [joystick z-axis (twist)]

4 - Horizontal strafe (move along y) [throttle's POV right/left thrusters]

5 - Vertical strafe (move along z) [throttle's POV up/down thrusters]

6 - Thrust (move along x) [throttle w/decoupled back]

The forces generated by each thruster on a ship are modeled.

  • Also inertia, mass changes and counter thrust are all modeled. My Origin 315p has 12 maneuvering thrusters, plus its main forward thruster/engine. . . and it is one of the small ships.

  • Thrust is the push that moves your ship in the opposite direction that a thruster first. In space there is no atmosphere , so there isn't any frictional drag to slow you down. To slow down, you have to use counter thrust, which is thrust that pushes opposite of your direction of travel..

  • Firing your main thruster(s) [powered by your ship's engine(s)] moves your ship forward (this is controlled by your throttle). Once you are moving forward, if you don't adjust the throttle, or make a course correction, and assuming that you don't hit anything (like an asteroid), you will keep moving in that direction and at that speed. In most of the smaller ships, the main thruster is fixed, but in some ships, the main thrusters rotate to aid in vertical takeoffs and landings (and also for more rapid directional changes).

  • To slow down, you use some of your small maneuvering thrusters to add opposite thrust (in this case to push away from your ship's nose). The fastest way to stop is to reduce the throttle to zero and hit the "Space Brake" button. [The Space Brake isn't an actual brake, it is just the controller command that fires thrusters that are rotated in the opposite direction of your forward direction.]

  • As you can imagine, it would be really difficult if you had to rotate and fire each thruster separately (none of us would last long in combat) . . . so your thrusters are controlled by your ship's FBW system (computer assisted flight). For example, if I want to turn right, you just have to move your joystick to the right, and your ship's computer adjusts the thrusters to turn the ship to the right.

  • Damage is also fully modeled, so if some of your thrusters are damaged during combat, your ship will respond differently and it will be harder to control. Because the force of each thruster is actually modeled, this all happens dynamically and the effect on your control is is felt instantly.

Ultra-realism vs. fun: Even though the intent is to make space flight realistic, some restraints were added, in order to make the game a bit more playable (especially since you will be flying in a game universe which is populated with a bunch other players). For instance a maximum speed was added to prevent constant acceleration (where your ship would be traveling too fast to control; and players would be rapidly using up all their fuel).

Blackouts and Redouts are also modeled, so you have to be careful of how much force you put on your character during flight.

Decoupling allows you to rotate your ship without changing the direction of travel. This is useful during combat if an enemy is firing at you from behind, as you can rapidly swing around and return fire. But staying in decoupled mode does make you an easier target, so you want to switch back to coupled mode fairly soon.

Currently (11.20.14) there are about 60 different starships in Star Citizen (including all the distinct variants), which will all fly a bit differently. Plus there will be considerably more ships by the time that Star Citizen is released.

Chris Roberts explains Flight Model and Input Controls on the RSI site.

Here's a portion from one of the early Star Citizen promotional videos where Chris Roberts explains Star Citizen - Physics


Still in Development:

  • "Manual landing gear deployment and retraction is an integral part of the new landing system; deploying your landing gear will now initiate a landing state which will swap out your hud and provide optional auto landing support should you want it. Once landed, you'll manually retract your gears to initiate take off again." Source

 


Traveling Modes:

  • Normal Travel Mode [similar to Star Trek Orbital Speed, which was 5000 MPH]: This is the travel mode that Arena Commander uses. Currently, the fastest ship in the game can travel at 300 meters per second (~ 670 MPH).

  • Auto Pilot Mode (or Cruise Speed) [similar to Star Trek impulse speed, since it is less than the speed of light]: The speed of light is denoted as c (1.0c = 186,000 miles per second), and in Star Citizen, cruise speed is expected to be 0.2c (37,200 miles per second). You enter auto pilot mode after you plot your course to your destination. This is basically fast travel mode and is how you travel long distances within a system. During autopilot mode, you'll be able to walk around your ship, look out the windows, and do things like check your navigation map, while your ship is hurtling through space at 1/5 the speed of light. [The reason given for having to remain in autopilot is that you will only be able to travel in a straight line since your body could not handle the G-forces associated with direction changes at such these speeds.]

  • Jump Point Mode: There are no warp engines in Star Citizen, so the only way that you can travel from one system to another is by entering a jump point. These abnormalities in space connect different systems through wormholes (space tunnels). You need a ship with a Jump Engine to navigate through Jump Points, as these engines somehow enlarge the wormhole, making it large enough for a ship to travel in. There are different size Jump Points, and larger ships are too big to enter the smaller ones. Only a few Jump Points are large enough for a carrier size ship to navigate. For more on Jump Points, see Spectrum Dispatch - UEE Queries: Jump-Points.

Note (I covered this earlier, but it needs repeating here): The Star Citizen universe will be somewhat compressed, so our solar system won't be done on a true 1:1 scale, but is expected to be 1:8 scale. At 0.2c, it would take 20-30 game minutes to cross our solar system, if it was at 1:8 scale. In normal travel mode, it would take you 249,000 game days to cross our solar system (based on a 30 minute crossing time at 0.2c). And there are expected to be 100 systems in the initial release.


More on the Ships: [coming soon]

 

 

Your Avatar

Banu Interior (concept)

Your avatar is the character you control in the game. Most people refer to this as your player character, but I prefer the term avatar (see My Avatar Page). When you are flying around in space, your ship is not your avatar . . . you avatar is the person you are on the ship (most often the captain/pilot of your ship). You control your ship through the actions of your character. Yes, you may be sitting at your computer, moving a joystick; but your avatar is actually mirroring your actions.

I'm also using the term avatar because of the way that Star Citizen combines character animations with your viewpoint. With most RPG/FPS games, your viewpoint is controlled by moving the camera around. In Star Citizen this is done a bit differently: the camera is attached to your character . . . fixed at the location of your character's eyes. When you are in 1st person view, you can look down at your feet, or up at your helmet visor, and anything that you do will be visible by any other player who is looking at you. This is because your character uses the exact same animations, whether you are in first person or third person view. When you are hurt and limping, other players will see you limping, and in 1st person view you will feel like you are limping, as you head bobs with your limp.

Star Citizen does includes a vanity mode [3rd person camera view], so it will be possible to view your character. But the game is meant to be played in first person, so during FPS combat (as opposed to ship combat), you cannot even switch to 3rd person view. This was done to prevent unrealistic combat awareness . . . such as being able to see around corners or over the objects you are hiding behind.

In the beginning of SQ42, you create your character, and this is the same character that you will be when you complete SQ42 and enter the Persistent Universe. According to Chris Roberts: "The Character creation screen will be done “in-fiction”. You’ll start the game in 1st person view looking at two bathroom doors – one with a male sign and one with a female sign. Which door you walk through will determine what sex you are when you walk into the washroom. Walking up to the mirror, you’ll see your reflection. Wiping the condensation off of the mirror with your hand (or some similar mechanic) will change / reveal your facial appearance. When you’re happy with how you look, you will exit and return to the UEE recruitment office and officer."

But, unlike most other RPGs, Star Citizen takes role playing beyond the traditional death/reload. In Star Citizen your character will eventually die (assuming that you play the game long enough), so there's an additional step at the end of character creation: "You’ll fill in your name on the MobiGlas form and also specify your beneficiary in case of death: this could be a family member, son, daughter, uncle, aunt or someone entirely new (although not another player character)." So, when your character eventually dies, you don't have the option of reloading a saved game, but your game doesn't come to an end either. Instead, you continue playing as a new character . . . the one you listed as your previous character's beneficiary.

Later in the game, you'll be able to purchase a variety outfits, armor/space suits, weapons, and other personal items.

Another thing that separates Star Citizen from more traditional RPGs is that your character NEVER levels up. Instead, your ships sort of level up, as you upgrade them (or replace them with better ones). But your game still centers around your character. Your ships, their upgrades, and your cargo are all just assets . . . assets that can be lost (how much you lose when a ship is destroyed or stolen depends on how much of it is insured).

 

 

Role Playing Freedom

Xian Karthu-al (concept art)

Freedom to choose your own path: Once you arrive in the Star Citizen Persistent Universe (after completing SQ42), you have total control over what you do. You can can pretty much be whomever you want to be, and go wherever you want to go.

Watch the Imagine: Star Citizen video for a better idea as to the freedom that you'll have in Star Citizen.

Here are some of the professions/roles you will be able to play:

Fighter Pilot: Join up with the militia and help keep mankind safe from Vanduul attacks on the frontier.

Explorer: become a space pioneers or just explore the distant stars

Merchant/Trader: With thousands of possible trade routes and hundreds of goods to ship, there’s credits to be made by clever merchants.

Pirate: Raid commerce, hijack data, intercept key personnel and more.

Bounty Hunter: collect credits by chasing targets on both sides of the law.

Salvage: pilot a massive factory ship to reclaim metal hulks, or board them and search for individual components and treasure.

Mercenary: hire yourself (and your ship) out for combat jobs.

Miner: set up a mining operation on an asteroid.


Privateer, Marine, Explorer Characters

Once you have created your character, and taken care of some basic stuff, you are not forced to complete the full campaign before you can move on to the main (the persistent universe part) game . . .but there will be some penalties for leaving SQ42 early. [more on this coming soon.]

Note: Professions are not rigidly defined, so your character will be able to fill several roles, if you want. Plus you can change careers at any point (a merchant can become a pirate, or an explorer).

Your choices will also determine who your allies are. Plus there are player Groups (which are like Guilds) and Corporations that you can join (or you can create your own, or you can go it alone).


Citizen vs. Non-Citizen:

Based on the Writer's Guide - Part Two:
Everyone is born a civilian, but Citizenship must be earned.
Some benefits for being a Citizen may include the following (this is currently just the working list):
- Ownership of a Multi-System Corp
- Run for political office (on a local or UEE level)
- Vote for UEE issues (Senators, Referendums, etc.) & Local Elections/Legislation
- Work for the UEE government (like the Advocacy)
- UEE trade licenses that permit trade with the Xi’An or Banu are easier to obtain
- Local Law Enforcement might let you skate on smaller crimes (unofficial perk)
- Pay a slightly lower tax rate."

According to Chris Roberts; "Citizenship is a big deal in this universe. Citizenship isn't your birthright. There's a little bit of Starship Troopers in there, but that in itself is modeled on the Roman system. You can win citizenship through military service, or you earn it through civic duties, or by becoming a merchant and buying it. That then opens up a new level of other things you can do in the galaxy."


For years now, I've dreamed about the perfect computer game. At first, after playing my first real RPG (Morrowind), my dreams of the perfect PC game revolved around a Middle Earth like place, where I would have miles and miles in a virtual game world, where I could explore and carry out quests, and fight off creatures like orcs and goblins . . . and my game home would be a little cottage in the woods. That version of my dream began back in the Spring of 2002.

Six months later, I watched the pilot of the Firefly series and I was instantly hooked. If you're not familiar with Firefly, it was the best science fiction space series I have ever seen . . . even though it was cancelled after just one season. It was a quirky combination of western and outer space, directed by Joss Whedon (also directed The Avengers ). A couple years later a theatrical movie was released, called Serenity, which wrapped up much that was left hanging at the end of its first season.

As I watched this series, my dream game changed. Middle Earth had morphed into space, and my little cottage had become a starship. I was now dreaming about a game, where I could be play the role of a captain of a ship like Serenity, where my journeys would be as much fun as the destinations . . . where I would have crew members to interact with, whom I would be able to rely on when things got a bit tricky. But then the worse possible thing happened . . . my dream became larger than what I believed would be possible (mainly because PC game developers had become less creative).

Here's a little video that I found, which captures some of the reasons that Firefly awakened me to what is now my Star Citizen dream:

When I first saw the Star Citizen promotional trailer back in 2012, I was excited with the concept, even though it seemed to be more combat focused than what I had been dreaming for. I was also dealing with a lot of medical expenses and trying to pay off my college loans, so there was like zero chance of replacing my old, ailing PC for at least a few more years. So my dream still seemed impossible.

Even though I couldn't afford to make a pledge, I faithfully followed Star Citizen and watched in wonder as this game slowly grew into the game that I've been waiting for. And my medical issues were now mostly behind me, so I had finally saved up enough to purchase a decent gaming PC (and was able to make a pledge for one of the less expensive ship packages).

I'm going to start out with a Freelancer DUR (once I can CCU for one). My first ship will be my Space RV which I'll use to roam the verse, spending most of my time exploring and trading. Once I save up enough credits, I hope to purchase a Constellation Aquila . . . which will be my Starship Home. I'm sooo looking forward to taking off and exploring places that I've only been able to dream about.

 

 

 Links and videos:

 

Some of my Favorite Star Citizen Videos:

Note on Star Citizen published videos (from Chris Roberts): "Every Star Citizen trailer features 100% in-engine content using actual game assets. Our aim is to show you the game we’re building, not to stun you with pre-rendered cutscenes. But with the attention to detail we’re putting into Star Citizen’s world, you’re forgiven if the two seem like one and the same!"

 

 
 
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