Debate Magazine

Star Citizen: Still Can't Work out What It's Supposed to Be...

Posted on the 15 February 2019 by Freeplanet @CUST0D1AN

Star Citizen: still can't work out what it's supposed to be...

slave up, bitches

six years down the terminal development road, "Still can't work out what Star Citizen's supposed to be?"
  • Is it a team game?
  • Is it a slave renderer?
  • Is it a racing, flying, swimming, stamina sport?
  • Is it a way to spend a few hours with friends you like?
  • Is it a never-ending ever-expanding second-life simulator with all the essential life-values and implications of simulated reality that might take hours to do the most basic of things or get from A to B?
  • Is it just a way to kill shit? A lot...

Basically, in March of 2019, nobody knows.
And it seems like 'nobody at CIG knows' either. Maybe the decades-distant concept is happily tucked away in Chris Roberts' head for later exploitation and rendering. But it's not like he's telling anyone in any understandable detail. Ask anyone who represents the project publicly, you'll get some standard response like it's a MMO space-sim or it's a NPC-economy driven sandbox (it's neither of these things) or it's a follow-up to the mil_game Squadron 42, part one of three...
Why such diversity of dev-response?
Nothing's been defined yet. Seriously, Chris seems to know what he's doing with his gaming masterwork aka the single-player serial-objective story-game Squadron 42 (episode i). He should do, he's been making versions of this game for decades. Freelancer. Wing Commander. Even his stab at films based on the gaming franchise. He's on home turf even if he's having trouble translating his dream to the 2020's gamer expectation. SQ42's a 3D-ised resolution of his life's work as a game maker, and it'll be cheesy. Accept this from minute one. Even with half of Hollywood's top actors reading the lines they've been asked to deliver for this thing. It'll be shit, in terms of cinematic kudos. It might even win the gaming equivalent of the Razzys'.
But what is this other thing, that backers threw $200,000,000 into, called Star Citizen?
It doesn't even have its own interaction interface yet. Apart from the totally inappropriate one borrowed from SQ42. It's a first-person product set in a VERSE that's 900 years beyond Cyberunk 2077 (ffs) and it's got nothing in the way of comparative gaming meat-on-the-bones. Star Citizen remains a potential concept for a decade in the future, once SQ42i and SQ42ii and SQ42iii have launched. What's even the point of Star Citizen's part-finished gameplay-less star system called Hurston when all the real art and all the real tech's being thrown into SQ42's couple of gaming levels that very few outside of the Wilmslow office have ever seen. And know this, "SQ42i will share no levels with SQ42ii or SQ42iii," so kiss your Star Citizen focus after SQ42i... nothing's finished and there's everything to make.
Plus, I suspect that there's NO FUCKING WAY anything in Star Citizen will match up to the bespoke fidelity of the gaming areas that'll be in SQ42 part one, two and three. And Star Citizen's gonna have to wait that six years (or more) until Wilmslow's done making Chris's story-gaming chef-d'oeuvre. So that means more delays, while the sandbox is brought up to the geometric standard of the story. What of the obvious story incursions that haven't been mentionoed for Star Citizen but are clearly on the way?
You think there won't be some over-arching corporate story in Star Citizen (some time in 2030) with dictator-like digi-actors directing your supposed sandbox freedom?

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