Star Citizen is working on optimising its network code

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Star Citizen has a lot of elements at play. Primarily a space combat game, a genre which was left to rot in a pile with all those horrible licensed cart-racing games, there’s no doubt that the (eventually) finished product is going to put a strain on any system running it. But there’s also concern that a beefy system will need an equally beefy online connection for the Star Citizen universe.

And maybe you will! Or maybe you won’t as Chris Roberts emphasised that performance was favoured over decent connection speeds, in another Ten For The Chairman Q&A session. “Up until now it has been about performance rather than bandwidth and we’re seeing the effects of it in certain cases like players splitting up and going to several comm arrays at once and causing the server to bog down,” Roberts said.

We’re using the Dead Reckoning system which means not sending data that isn’t needed, along with other systems and refining them to ultimately have scalability in the future. The impact on bandwidth won’t be major, but performance on servers and clients is our big focus right now and later on we’ll continue to optimize the network code with a more careful eye when things are looking good on performance.

Roberts also answered questions on ship repairs, targeting modes and influences on Star Citizen. Here’s a transcript of his responses:

What games influenced the design of SC?

SC takes some elements from other popular online games such as World of Warcraft, EvE and DayZ. The objective is to make SC feel like a living universe and keep players invested in the game by the use of and tweaking of various mechanics from other games.

How will docking with other ships work?

Our thinking is that bigger ships with standardised airlocks would be able to do docking and the smaller ones may or may not be able to. It may also vary by manufacturer. In short it is still being designed.

Will there be enough time to actually repair a larger ship during a fight?

Yes, it’s a balance issue which is being worked on but it requires the multi-crew experience to be polished and balanced before the repair systems can be implemented properly.

Are there any plans to populate the space/night sky with celestial objects?

Yes. Longer term we will generate the “sky sphere” or “space sphere” from the data in the Starmap.

Will we see relative and nonrelative targeting modes for turrets?

We already have two modes for turrets although it was broken for a time it appears to be working again. That said we are working to improve turrets so that you have more better UI, better tracking, more information, faster turrets, more natural control, etc. Manning a turret should be fun and you should be able to be effective!

Music in ship like the Cutlass Commercial

Yes, though it’s not a high priority but will be implemented farther down the road after things like VOIP and mood music.

Current plans to continue FPS on Crusader map. Thoughts on continued development of Arena Commander.

Star Marine/Arena Commander of facets of the overall game. Both will be used to hone your skills for the Persistent Universe. Waiting for everything to be properly polished before enabling it, nothing has been thrown out. Both will be supported but are less important than delivering the main experience of the Persistent Universe.

Is it planned to expand the ‘use’ prompt to more things.

Yes, there will be a lot of options based on the environment and certain prompts that will dictate how you are able to use an object in the environment. It will be rolled out, hopefully, in 2.3 or 2.4 with Item System 2.0.

Could we have a system to create a character’s face on the website similar to the Star Map?

The generator is very heavily tied into CryEngine so it would be extremely unlikely to be released in that way. It’s also highly unlikely that it will be released as a stand alone module but it isn’t entirely eliminated as an option.

Right now, the current Star Citizen pot from crowdfunding alone is sitting at over $107.8 million. Or roughly seven Nkandla not-a-compounds.

Last Updated: February 10, 2016

Darryn Bonthuys

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