Liftoff: First Star Citizen Dogfight Looks Pretty, Buggy

By Nathan Grayson on April 14th, 2014 at 10:00 am.

So it was promised, so shall it be. Chris Roberts said he’d lift the lid on Star Citizen‘s long-awaited dogfighting module in April, and now here we are. Previously, a sleepy hangar was The Final Frontier, but below you can watch Roberts take one giant leap into space’s infinite, gleaming black. It looks absolutely beautiful, but yeeeeeeeah this is still a very, very early game.

And here, for those who have a galaxy’s worth of time on their hands, is the entire panel:

That was very nice looking… when it worked. Hopefully Star Citizen’s dogfighting module is in a more stable state when it lands in backers’ hands, because this demo had rampant interface glitches, AI issues, targeting problems, ship invulnerability/hyper vulnerability, and a crazy spinning physics glitch – all of which crashed and burned at the end when Roberts was unable to respawn and the reveal concluded on a somewhat awkward note.

Now, this is an alpha. Bugs are totally understandable. But the stakes are ultra-high for Star Citizen due to its stratosphere-scraping development cost and the fact that dogfighting is kind of the core of a space sim, at least in the classic sense of the genre. This module, then, will inevitably serve as a proof-of-concept for some. Competitors like Elite: Dangerous and Limit Theory, meanwhile, can’t match Star Citizen’s engine or space-age ShinyTech, but there’s more oomph and speed in their combat at the moment.

I did like bits of what I saw quite a lot, though. The extent to which each ship is apparently simulated, for instance. Losing parts will shift your center of mass, and as Roberts demonstrated on numerous occasions, ships are definitely destructible.

I think once this all comes together, it could be really impressive. Right now, though, the dogfighting module is looking less like one giant leap and more like a small step. I’m sure it will be more polished when it launches in full, but maybe brace for a bumpy takeoff. Just in case.

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180 Comments »

  1. Premium User Badge

    Gap Gen says:

    I imagine that the top footage is some kind of space game show, with a studio audience whooping every thing the pilot does right. There’s an aging celebrity in a sequined tuxedo, offering quips in a regional accent. A countdown timer to a gunge machine hidden above the cockpit.

    • tailzdru says:

      This,

      The cheering and whooping made me feel slightly nauseous.

      • Stardreamer says:

        Exactly. In Britania all you’d be able to hear would be the polite lifting of eyebrows and a small, delicate round of clapping at the end.

        • Kaeoschassis says:

          What exactly does the polite lifting of an eyebrow sound like…?

          • Geebs says:

            Like…. England

            *union jack parachute jump*

          • Antsy says:

            For your eyebrows onleeeeeeey…

          • Premium User Badge

            Fitzmogwai says:

            A brief moment of absolute stillness, laden with irony.

          • Premium User Badge

            Gap Gen says:

            The straining of a thousand ropes and pulleys as MechaChurchill winks to the camera, puffing on a factory chimney.

          • Antsy says:

            Poor MechaChurchill, saw off the alien invasion only to be ignominiously tossed aside and replaced by Clembot Ascii.

          • dom.stb says:

            Well played commenters, well played.

      • MrThingy says:

        The whooping and idiotic cheering is actually in-game sound.

        You need DLC to remove it.

        • Shadowcat says:

          What about when I climb into the cockpit, and all the voices are chanting “Helmet! Helmet! Helmet! WoooooooOOOOAAAHHH’RAAYYYY!!!!!”

          I kinda want to keep that bit.

          • Shadowcat says:

            I did have to laugh when, after the crowd had finished going bananas at the whole “walk to the ship, climb the ladder, get in, flip helmet” malarky, he crashed almost immediately and was dumped back into the hangar, and you could almost hear half the audience thinking “ah crap, do we need to go through all that again…?”

          • waltersphnesphne says:

            You do understand that he purposefully aimed the ship into that object, BEFORE switching to 3rd person view, in order to show the audience the games damage states.

      • Bull0 says:

        I thought it was quite cute. The way they started chanting “helmet, helmet” before the silly helmet flip thing, for instance. NO FUN ALLOWED etc

        The most off-putting thing for me was the demoer (was it Chris himself?)’s terrible aim.

        • Premium User Badge

          Gap Gen says:

          If there’s not a mod that adds HELMET HELMET I’ll be very disappointed.

          • Geebs says:

            What’s really needed is a mod that gives a one in ten chance of the pilot screwing up the stupid flip animation and socking themselves in the jaw. That would make it all bearable.

            (also one that plays Helmet in your helmet so you can helmet while you Helmet)

          • Bull0 says:

            @Geebs Agreed, that would be pretty amusing to see (the first time, at least)

          • leelochops says:

            Or this ‘Lard’s Classic Cut’ needs to be played at every launch:
            http://www.cix.co.uk/~lemoncurry/ra/DavidBowie-SpaceOddity.mp3

          • Premium User Badge

            particlese says:

            Better yet, with all this ship simulation business, they should make donning the helmet a surgeon simulator style minigame.

        • CookPassBabtridge says:

          This whole thread is probably the best comment thread in the entire galaxy

        • Screamer says:

          Indeed, he seems as deft at aiming with the console toy controller doohicky than I am :D

      • dE says:

        It’s funny. It made me realize why SC is being showered with money.
        A canned helmet animation… WOOOHOOO YEAAAAH YAY FUCK YES GOTY
        The same canned helmet animation… OOOH YEAH THIS IS IT, BEST THING EVER
        A random crash bug (which happens, no big deal)… YAY YYOOOOHOOOOO OH YES OH YES OH YES MORE MORE MORE INSTANT CLASSIC
        Punch in the face…. OH YEAH, AGAIN, DO IT AGAIN, WOOOOHOOOO

        I mean, I get enthusiastic. I get fun. I don’t quite get being drunk enough to not know your own name anymore. But they kept cheering for crashes, glitches and bugs. Anything. Chris Roberts has managed to tap that small portion of humanity that is enthusiastic about all the things. Good for him, good for them. I’ll inch even further away from SC and the crowd it draws.

        • SanguineAngel says:

          It’s a bit like when everyone applauds in the pub when the bar staff smashes a glass by mistake. What you’re witnessing there is revelry! People in a jovial communal atmosphere being more likely to take things in good humour.

          • CookPassBabtridge says:

            Is this the mythical ….”happiness”… you speak of?
            I shall not believe it. WITCHCRAFT

          • HadToLogin says:

            Strange – first thing I notice when bartender breaks something, he’s rushing to replace it faster than you can say “WTF you’ve done you stupid motherlover, I’m gonna rip your fu… oh, thank you for that free bottle of beer kind sir, stupid accident I know”.
            But after that, yeah, there’s laugher.

            Maybe they took audience from people who didn’t actually paid for those bugs :)

        • Reapy says:

          While I agree with you that the game is a lot of flash and not much substance yet, I think at a reveal thing at PAX East you kind of just go nuts and have fun. I went for the first time this year and it was pretty amazing, I was totally able to let go of all the cynicism I have about gaming and just have a good time. I have huge amounts of doubt towards how good SC will be, yet I’d probably have been chanting ‘HELMET HELMET’ with the crowd had I gone to that panel.

        • Premium User Badge

          particlese says:

          Everything is Awesome!~

      • Solidstate89 says:

        Fucking Boston, man.

    • Antsy says:

      The Generation Ship Game? Look I haven’t had my coffee yet!

      • Premium User Badge

        Gap Gen says:

        The crews of two generation ships compete to reach a star system before their life support systems fail critically or the cabin-fever addled grandchildren go insane and murder everyone. The winner gets colonisation rights, the mineral rights to whatever asteroids exist in the system and a new fridge.

        • LionsPhil says:

          And a CUDDLY TOY!

        • Antsy says:

          “Hoverbike, blaster pistol, um…cutlery set, spacesuit repair kit, holiday for two at Proxima Centauriparc and um, erm….”

          BEEP

          “Aw bad luck, you forgot the Goblin Teasmade”

          • CookPassBabtridge says:

            Totally read this comment in Eddie Izzard’s voice

    • prian says:

      They needed something to cheer about.

      The first presentation (the live unveiling) started more than an hour late and almost immediately upon starting the game crashed. Badly.

      The whole presentation was challenging with Chris Roberts fumbling with controls and not knowing how to do basic tasks like start the game or launch into space.

      So when things did kind of work then the fans (after all, it’d be fans who went to see this) reacted enthusiastically. Some of them have thousands of dollars put into Star Citizen so it’s either cheer the small stuff or cry in a corner about wasting thousands of dollars on a dream that doesn’t seem to be coming true.

    • jangove says:

      I hated that whooping. And I think it is true that is slightly more likely in the States (here) than in the UK, although I lived in London long enough (about two years, although somewhat spread out over a period of a bit less than five. Work related) to know that the idea that either the English, the British generally, or Europeans as a whole are magically more polite or restrained is largely bullshit. Especially in office environments I’ve seen behavior that would cause the EEOC to descend upon a company in a manner like unto a fist of divine wrath and blot it utterly from the face of the Earth. Which I’ve also seen, come to think of it. An American outpost of a London company. Granted, traders are generally the most loathsome people in the world to begin, those not also neo-Nazis being second only to neo-Nazis.

      Having said all that, two observations”
      1) I think some of that was Pax. It is a really loutish crowd, as a cursory examination of their forum will attest, and the dickwolves fiasco, and the general willingness to destroy people just because Mike has said something offensive and then thrown a tantrum. While I will grant that not everyone who attends is part of that crowd, they are going to set the tone.
      1b) I hung out on the PA forums enough to form an opinion. Agree, disagree, I am not going to prove my bonafides to you, hypothetical person who takes personal umbrage at the very idea that criticism of PA in anyway is allowed under international law.

      2) Even granting the above I’ve been to enough things like that to know that for all the shouting at least three quarters, and probably more like seven-eighths of that audience was wincing and muttering under their breath shutupshutupshutupshutup.

      Personally, I was a little (like, a very small amount) annoyed that this was being demoed at PA. I understand it, but having backed SCI wasn’t in love with having something I support involved with Penny Arcade (at any of its nine million levels) as currently constituted. In some ways, due to the ways in which PAX and PA aggressively claim to be about community — in way I grant are often both genuine and laudable — I think that the negative aspects become both more distressing and harder to separate.

      [Edit: on reflection, I probably shouldn't have raised the PA/PAX issue at all, given how much heat it is likely to generate. I find that fact too irritating to simply nuke this out of hand, but I won't be following up -- I hope -- and if this is out of bounds I apologize. ]

      • Milkboyslim says:

        This as not a PAX event. This was a CIG backer event pre PAX. People that were there said it was fine and that the idiots made it seem way worse then it really was. Please it as this loud and more in Germany at Gamescon last year. When they revealed the Hangar modular….

  2. Stardreamer says:

    First vid sounds like the speaker is Lumpy Space Princess…

    Space Adventure Time!

    [Edited to correct moronic naming error!]

    • ran93r says:

      Good call!

      • CookPassBabtridge says:

        I think someone may have slipped me some drugs because this entire article and comment thread is making me feel like I want to hug everybody

  3. John Connor says:

    I used to think Elite: Dangerous was a wannabe riding on the coattails of Star Citizen’s record-setting kickstarter, but after seeing their respective demos… Star Citizen’s video seemed like a joke. Where has that budget gone, exactly? Marketing? Because they’ve been outdone.

    The only thing Star Citizen has going for it now, in my eyes, is the fact it will have on-foot combat as well. Fighting your way back to your ship after a deal gone bad and barely escaping into hyperspace is my dream gaming experience. Unfortunately, I am much more skeptical Star Citizen will really deliver that now.

    • Gesadt says:

      well the game is in alpha, if the budget is “gone” as you say, well theyre in big trouble. hopefully its only starting to get used up. furthermore paying salaries for tens (perhaps even hundreds) of people costs quite a bit. add to that various licenses, contractors and keeping people on payroll for years to come untill the game is finished.

      • BobbyDylan says:

        Last count CIG was employing about 250 people.

        For comparisons sake, Frontier employs 212 (according to Wikipedia).

      • TacticalNuclearPenguin says:

        It’s also worth noting that youtube is chock full of videos of the coming PAX days in which people happily played the multiplayer in the Logitech stations.

        They rushed it and they screwed up the first reveal, but the thing works. What’s FAR more important is that everything they shown so far oozes with passion and soul, even the much dreaded ( On RPS only, off course ) helmet animation. Bugs are far easier to stomp than passion is to “implement”.

        As bugs go away you are assured to have something good underneath, having it the other way around would be a bigger issue.

        As time goes on it will be harder and harder for the naysayer to validate themselves and i have all the patience needed to wait for that.

    • P.Funk says:

      Oh yes, one alpha video and you’re ready to call a winner.

      Get real. Its people like you that guarantee most developers won’t show early footage half the time and why Ubisoft spends millions making “demo” footage of games that are fake mock ups that will never look the same when released.

      Fickle.

      • BobbyDylan says:

        A winner? When did this turn into a Battlefield / cod (Or Failstation / toybox) competition.

        Why can’t both games be great, and the winner be space sim fans?

    • Docs says:

      Believe me, Elite Dangerous was in that state at some point too, just like every game. This only really proves that they were a little smarter about marketing by only showing pre-recorded early previews of gameplay rather than trying to do a live demo and that the game is a little further on in development. (Bare in mind, development for a new Elite game had been going on and off for years, so they likely at least had a bit of a foundation to start).

      The main reason they had issues with it was because the server they had set up in Boston died just before the livestream, which meant they had to use their server in Austin which was running a slightly older and more unstable build. The stream was delayed so they could re-patch the game to this version. The build on the show floor that people got to try was apparently a lot more stable than the livestream one.

      Personally I’m excited for both games, but the multi-crew ships in SC are the main thing that I want to try. Being able to crew a big capital ship with a bunch of other people on engineering, weapons, navigation, command and control and electronic warfare sounds pretty awesome.

    • Aaarrrggghhh says:

      “Because they’ve been outdone.”

      To be fair: Elite has a much more limited scope regarding size, fidelity and gameplay mechanics. “Outdone” is a far fetched term when Elite doesn’t have stuff like individual thrusters that behave physically correct, g-force simulation, etc. This all takes time and money that Frontier didn’t have to spend developing their first prototype. ED is way more “conservative” in it’s approach to gamedesign and technology used.

      • BobbyDylan says:

        Not really. Elite plans for explore-able ship, and land-able planets where you can get out an piss about. Not sure about the FPS combat, but I thought this was also a goal.

        However, Frontier are working to create a stable space sim first, then add the rest in time. The only thing that I know Elite isn’t doing is a narrative driven SP campaign.

        • Aaarrrggghhh says:

          “However, Frontier are working to create a stable space sim first, then add the rest in time. ”

          That’s the point. All those system are already been worked on as they have to be in day one, especially for the singleplayer campaign. A lot of these features _might_ come to Elite, but they wont be in day1 and currently aren’t worked on. All their employees are currently working on a single aspect of the game while the CIG team has to work on more stuff simultaneously.

        • Lukewarm says:

          Elite doesn’t aim for the same amount of detail, fidelity or immersion. Yes, in the end both games will have many things in common, but Star Citizen will be more complex in almost all respects. Which doesn’t say anything about Star Citizen being the better game. In fact I see the risk that developers and players might get lost in the complexity CIG strives for, will E:D shines with rock-solid and smooth gameplay mechanics. Anyway, for now it means that many things in Star Citizen take longer to develop than in Elite.

      • EPICTHEFAIL says:

        In what sense is it more limited? FD plan for around a hundred billion procedurally-generated systems, all of which should be available for landing/atmospheric flight once the PL expansion is available (which should be some time in 2015), and they have also mentioned walking around ships, stations and planets, as well as (potentially) some FPS combat being introduced at a later date. Given that CIG have put so much emphasis on what should really be a secondary feature at best, and the rest of their game being basically Privateer and Wing Commander with better graphics, I would put Elite in the lead as far as ambition and scale go.
        As for G-force and thruster simulation, well, they have mentioned the possibility of thruster damage affecting flight behaviour, and G-force would just be annoying and pointless anyway, so no great loss there.

        • TacticalNuclearPenguin says:

          The number of systems means little especially if helped by procedural generation, and all the things you already mentioned are part of SC aswell.

          It’s not a new Wing Commander only because they’re showing dogfighting as the very first thing, otherwise Elite would be the very same game, don’t you think?

          Most importantly, all the features you mentioned don’t take anything away from the fact that there still is a different level of ambition, a more simulative approach means that stuff is harder to implement, you don’t simply get reduced maneuverability when a thruster is hit, the drawback you suffer is still part of the simulation and not an arbitrary ” Now your right strafing will be somewhat worse, we’ll slow it 30% and add some jiggle to make it look realistic “.

          The G-force simulation is also meant to be there as a limiter, ships have a lot of turning potential even with full IFCS, humans can’t, how much do you want to risk is the whole point of it, it’s an extra layer of complexity, a gameplay element that rewards skill and judgement. Plus, what turns me a little away from Elite is indeed the flight model, allowing you to coast without thrusting doesn’t mean that you’re having a FULL newtonian physics setup, just that you’re allowing a part of it and nothing much more complex than that.

          Add to that that ships are designed from the get go with thrusters positioning in mind, type of thruster ( pivoting or fixed ) and other technical consideration about it’s whole equipment, or cargo space or whatever that have to make sense from an engineering standpoint. No wonder people are so hyped with ships, when they are designed to make sense and be something more than a cool skin on a mesh.

          Then there’s the multicrewing part of the deal, which is their biggest core thing, the vastly different level of graphical prowess, simulated economy and an interesting trading system, ship boarding, FPS, you name it, on top of any feature ED planned to have ( most for the future ).

          I’m not fanboying for SC either and i plan to play both games, i just can’t stand uninformed negativity. You can twist it anyway you like, but the truth is that SC for better or worse is a far more difficult game for developers.

          • EPICTHEFAIL says:

            I`ll admit, I might be fanboying for Elite a bit because I utterly despise the faux-Star Wars gameplay and aesthetic of SC, but Elite will include all of those features you just listed, with the exception of pointlessly sucking away processing power to achieve the same basic goal of affecting manoeuvrability based on battle damage. The way I see it, ED and SC`s gameplay are pretty much at an even keel with the exception of pew-pew lazorz vs. more realistic weapons, but Elite allows you to run off to the other side of the galaxy and set up your own little base 50 thousand lightyears from the nearest civilised space. Well, perhaps it won`t have multi-person crews, but I frankly see no point to it over simply hanging around with your budies each in their own ship.

          • TacticalNuclearPenguin says:

            That’s perfectly agreeable, as of now the extra thing Elite has that i would love for SC is a totally seamless space, even if it’s impractical and probably just a thing that’s “good to know it’s there”.

            As soon as Elite will let me in cheaply i’m not going to esitate, i just kindly ask people to have patience and wait for SC, it’s going to take longer and there’s little to do about that.

            Just don’t help the negativity ahead of time, because the big publisher world is interested in SC to fail for a reason and that wouldn’t be a good thing.

            Should it REALLY suck when it actually matters, then i’ll send an excuse letter with cookies to anyone i have harassed with my rants.

          • derbefrier says:

            dont forget the Squadron 42, the co-op, singleplayer campaign. It also seems your counting features that may(meaning not even 100% gonna happen) make it in to expansions for elite when they are already confirmed and being actively developed for Star Citzen. Elite may get to the complexity of star citizen eventually but its not gonna start out there.

            I’ll be playing and enjoying both games of course but it is what it is

        • Lukewarm says:

          A few examples:

          - In E:D you collect your loot by flying close to it. In Star Citizen you actually have to pick up.
          - In E:D you shoot cargo bay doors open. In Star Citizen you have to board and overtake the ship if you want to secure most of the loot.
          - E:D will have millions of procedurally generated worlds, Star Citizen will have hundreds of handcrafted worlds to achieve more detail and diversity.
          - Star Citizen will have extremely detailed ship-interiors from the start, simply because Chris Roberts thinks they are important for the immersion. Frontier will add ship interiors later because they focus more on the space part. Which in reverse means that Frontier can develop the space mechanies earlier and faster (since they tend to be less complex than their counterparts in Star Citizen)
          - Star Citizen will have a full fledged single player campaign.
          - Lots of other things Star Citizen will have while E:D wont. Plus: I hope we don’t have talk about which game has more details and fidelity: http://imgur.com/a/Z1Fie

          And how are g-forces pointless and annoying? If I’d go through all features that Star Citizen will have exclusive, you’d probably tag everything as “pointless”.

      • dreamscape says:

        I would suggest you read the following FAQ

        http://elite-dangerous.wikia.com/wiki/Elite:_Dangerous_FAQ

        Elite: Dangerous has a much larger scope than Star Citizen and is technically much more challenging to create.

        • jangove says:

          Sigh.

          What is it with all the dick waving?

          Is it just because of the profile of SC? They’re both pretty, both are promising, and since you are under no obligation to give money to either, the fact that some people have given money to a different one than you hypothetically did/would/will does you no harm that I can discern.

          I suppose I just don’t have the right makeup to understand why one garnering a great deal of attention is so grating. Perhaps there is some behavior from SC backers that I haven’t observed –that is a genuine, as opposed to rhetorical, perhaps there — but otherwise I just don’t get it. I haven’t spend money on Elite yet, although as soon as something I can access at a price I can afford has a date I will (before that, I would inevitable rationalize paying the whole way. When my X55 shows up I will probably break down no matter what). Beyond that, what is they big deal? Is it just a desire that Elite get more attention? If it were about the whooping, I could understand it, but this predates the whooping.

          And neither is FS3 nor is the other I-war3, neither can be called the second coming anyway. If we get both of those, I’m prepared to grant that title of John the Baptist might be up for grabs…

        • Lukewarm says:

          Where is the larger scopre? Because E:D generates an entire galaxy out of ones and zeros? That doesn’t say anything about the real scope, does it?

    • Bull0 says:

      Yeah, as others have said, it’s an alpha video. Without wanting to be rude, nailing your colours to the mast at this early stage is a mistake. Definitely makes it seem as though you don’t know what you’re talking about.

    • Stevostin says:

      If you don’t compare release to release, then it’s obviously invalid. SC has been shown at PAX early before dogfight module is released. On the feature level I played none but I haven’t seen the G or neither ship detailed modeling in Elite. All in all both games seems to be played quite differently. I bet most of us will play both, with joy.

    • Premium User Badge

      DarkLiberator says:

      You do realize that Elite: Dangerous has been in development since 2007 essentially while SC had nothing but a tech demo at the start of its crowdfunding campaign? It does take awhile for video games to be made and SC is not projected for “official” release till late 2015 assuming it doesn’t get delayed. Not sure what your point is.

      • Pecisk says:

        Wrong, all code and graphical assets are done within year since KS, so FD clearly have delivered they goods faster than CIG.

        What ED had was clear concepts to start with, conceptual networking ideas, code concepts for PG engine, etc. Still, everything needed to be done from start, and it was done starting from Feb 2013.

        • Lukewarm says:

          So both game have the exact same game mechanics and the exact same art assets, and Frontier delivered delievered tham faster? Or are both game very different in their aims and features, which makes it impossible to draw a fair comparison between the two?

        • Milkboyslim says:

          Get your facts straight:
          Elite dangerous, has been in development for close to ten years off and on. So they should have a head start. As stated here. By one of Frontiers Designers for Elite dangerous.

          http://forums.frontier.co.uk/showthread.php?t=6859
          http://forums.frontier.co.uk/showthread.php?p=349538#post349538

          “Mike Evans:

          I’m sure it’s been said before on the forums but technically everything you’ve seen of Elite so far has been created post kickstarter, not before. Those ten years of skunkworks development got the engine in the right place to start development, but the actual game, the meat of it, was created once the kickstarter finished and proper production began. ”

    • Baines says:

      Won’t you feel silly when Chris Roberts fights his way to, and then blasts off in, his ship that he built with the Kickstarter funds.

    • Lukewarm says:

      Really? They have been outdone?

      http://imgur.com/a/Z1Fie

      Really?

      The first videos of E:D didn’t look like much either. Are you aware that this is an alpha? This is all WIP. Besides, the turn rate was increased for the event, which is why the ships are more agile than they should be.

      • DatonKallandor says:

        Yes really. The parts of Star Citizen that look good are essentially skyboxes. You know, the stuff that even Xbox360′s could handle to dazzle people into making them think the games looked good? Good looking Skyboxes (aka “graphics” to game reviewers) is what earned the entire Unreal Engine series of games (Mass Effect being chief among them) and the various Halo games high “graphics” scores. Skyboxes are easy.

        The stuff that’s hard, like weapon FX, animations and functional UI are terrible in the SC alpha. There’s a reason nobody who wants it to look good made a gif of the weapons firing, or the general flight behavior.

        • Lukewarm says:

          I have posted actual screenshots from the demo that is currently avaiable for play at the Logitech booth at PAX East. You either don’t know what a skybox is, or you haven’t looked at the screenshots.

          The only skybox you see in these screenshots are the distant star fields. Everything else, the planets, the asteroids, the space stations, the debris, the ships, the cockpits are actual 3D-models with proper, dynamic lighting.

          As for the rest of your insightful contribution: The turn rates were increased for the demo to achieve a more accessible gameplay. This is not the actual and especially not the final flight model. And the weapon effects and the HUD aren’t final either. It’s an alpha! Does that mean anything to you? Trust me, I have seen much worse alphas.

          • DatonKallandor says:

            The parts that aren’t skybox are the ship models (which look good) the close asteroids (which look like asteroids) and the stations (which look okay, but not great). The huge beams, the planet, the far asteroids, the sun and the starfield are all background skybox elements, which are easy to make look great.

          • Lukewarm says:

            You can actually fly towards these objects. Must be an amazing skybox. However, I could get an confirmation from the devs, but I have a feeling that you might not believe their statement.

  4. Curry the Great says:

    I wish these kinds of things were more like a concert of classical music. Where there’s no whooping and screaming the moment the conductor raises his hands and when people howl for the awesomeness of that cello solo. Just people watching a guy show and play his game with a critical but lengthy applause at the end.

    The wooping and screaming is kinda typical for the whole air that surround the game though, isn’t it? I think few games have managed to create such hype that people devolve many hours to just talking and speculating about it. I hope all the money these people gave Roberts will actually make for a good game. Thanks crazy hype people!

    Between the awkwardness of Roberts’ voice and the incessant screaming it’s very hard for me to watch the video.

    • Aaarrrggghhh says:

      “The wooping and screaming is kinda typical for the whole air that surround the game though, isn’t it?”

      American audience. They cheer at basically everything. You can show them how Sam Fisher twists his knife in a guys body and they still cheer and shout.

      • P.Funk says:

        Its not much better in Canada. Yes I did see Snakes on a Plane, and yes our audiences danced like good little puppets at the appropriate tug of the strings.

      • Jeroen D Stout says:

        Yes, whereas in England all sports are observed in absolute silence. There is never a disturbance. If someone scores, there is a polite applause after which everybody goes home for their din-dins.

        • SanguineAngel says:

          Also, any instance of an (obviously inadvertent) physical foul is dealt with promptly with a genteel round of apologies and handshakes and sincere good sportsmanship. At half time each team retires for a cream tea.

        • Aaarrrggghhh says:

          Give such a presentation in America and give it in Europe. Compare the audience reaction and you will see a clear difference. We have never been talking about sports.
          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Straw_man

    • EPICTHEFAIL says:

      At this point i regard SC as the space sim equivalent of Call of Duty, complete with legions of drooling morons who insist on praising the game at every opportunity, despite the extent of what we have seen thus far being… a metal box, and a small level with basic dogfighting. Excuse me if I sound unimpressed when the only things CIG have shown are a Cryengine tech demo and gameplay that hasn`t evolved at all in 20 years, while its main competitor has an actual beta running and a fairly complex core gameplay in place already.

      • SanguineAngel says:

        Let us not forget the equally passionate tribe/sect who rush to criticise or choose sides in a conflict that wouldn’t exist but for their own efforts to establish a divide.

        In this instance I think it’s a case of “don’t hate the game, hate the players” to distort a common phrase!

        It’s worth remembering that there are probably more people out there just excited about both games than there are trying to proletize & disparage

      • Smoky_the_Bear says:

        Yep the people actively looking for this to fail just so they can take to the forums with a smug sense of “I told you so” are far worse than the people getting overexcited. At least the over excitable people are doing so because they have passion for video games and want to see this succeed. The people looking for this to fail are cynical idiots who aren’t proper video game fans and just want to be able to score points and look clever on internet message boards.

      • Jenks says:

        Sometimes a commenter name tells you everything you need to know about what’s coming.

  5. steamcamel says:

    It was nice to finally see it in action, but I really wish they would stop letting a pack of hyenas into these presentations.

    • MrThingy says:

      * adjusts rear-view mirror on ship .. *

      “WHOOOOO! YEEEHAAAA! WOOOOOO! GET SOOOME”

    • derbefrier says:

      I was right in the middle of a fucking reptile zoo, and somebody was giving booze to these goddamn things.

      • TacticalNuclearPenguin says:

        Why weren’t you armed and why the “That’s why you don’t use CryEngine TROLOLOL” guy ( and some others ) is still alive?

        You’re totally accountable.

        Btw, that dude so passioned about fish collection mechanics was the clear winner.

      • LennyLeonardo says:

        It’s okay, they were just admiring the shape of its hull.

  6. MrSean490 says:

    I watched the full live stream. The amount of false starts they had was quite surprising. The resolution of the video is a bit low so it’s hard to see all the details in the game but it looks nice. But damn there are some serious technical issues they need to work through. Some gameplay bugs as well. I’m glad they aren’t releasing the dog fighting module to the backers yet because it really needs more time in the oven. E:D is much more put together, but given how much E:D are charging for people to test a game for them, I’m glad it’s where it’s at.

    • Pecisk says:

      ED doesn’t charge you anything – if you want to support game, do it. If you want to support it with 200 gbp, do it – and you get alpha access. If you can’t, there’s beta levels or simple copy of the game – which comes out in summer. It is that simple.

      Alpha access is limited for same reasons why CIG will roll out DFM in phases. You have to work with feedback, and if it’s overwhelming, it is no good.

  7. Sheogorath says:

    I was tempted to get into Star Citizen, but then I saw the “permadeath for ships that you paid real money for” thing and my NOPE alarms went off.

    • Docs says:

      There’s in-game insurance, standard hull insurance that covers just the ship as it is when you get it will apparently be something they want everyone to have. (I believe all of the backers ships now come with something like 3 months of insurance to start with anyway).

    • Aaarrrggghhh says:

      I really don’t know where you read that. There is no permadeath for ships you have paid money for (unless you fly an uninsured ship into enemy territory. But then that would be your own fault). There isn’t even “real” permadeath for characters. If a character dies his/her stuff get’s transfered to his/her heir.

    • TacticalNuclearPenguin says:

      If you “buy” a non LTI ship with, say, 6 months insurance, then yes, you are supposed to renew it or you’ll lose it.

      Thankfully, hull insurance is designed to be horribly cheap and LTI is just the very same thing, but forever and free. A little thanks to the early backers and nothing more, and it might not be possible to purchase anymore.

      What you really need to watch out for, however, is cargo and upgrade insurance. That will be more expensive, but it will be vital to protect any modification you’ve done to your ship and any cargo you’re carrying, it’s however going to cost more depending on the “risk level”, so if you want to travel to a very risky system you’ll have to pay more to be covered. Some systems are so risky that such insurances won’t cover you no matter what.

      BUT! Even in this particular situation, hull insurance is still going to be valid and you’re still going to get your ship back, that goes for both standard and lifetime hull insurance. Off course, it’ll come back with vanilla loadout and no cargo.

      All insurances are optional, but you’ll obviously want to at least insure the hull.

    • ilves says:

      Well, once the game launches EVERYTHING will be done with in-game currency, you won’t be able to straight up buy ships with real money, thats only for pre-launch support of the game. But yes, things can technically die, but hull insurance is dirt cheap (or so they have said) so as long as your insurance is in force you’ll get it replaced. So what you have heard is technically true but not really in practice and only applies to early backers.

    • Lukewarm says:

      Well, if you can’t even comprehend that basic piece of information correctly, it might really be better for you to stay away from the mens games.

  8. LionsPhil says:

    Three minutes in, and I’m already sick of seeing that helmet-flip animation.

    • Premium User Badge

      JiminyJickers says:

      Me too, who would really flip their expensive flight helmet everytime they put it on. Its silly.

    • BobbyDylan says:

      You should try the Hangar module. It’s full with “enter” and “exit” animations which are awesome about once. Now, I roll my eyes that I can’t skip the slow ass avatar pissing about with the door handle.

    • Premium User Badge

      Ninja Dodo says:

      They really need to make that random with a lot of variations (and shorter) or optional like a manual taunt.

      If you wanted to have fun with it you could also make it fully player controlled, so you can get into your chair and put on your helmet in various creative ways. Or just make it skippable with a fade in/out or something. These mundane little bits of business are only fun if you get to do them yourself in non-discreet varied ways (see also Papers Please), not if you just sit and watch.

      • SanguineAngel says:

        This is really oddly specific but I think I’d like it if it were a rare occurrence – maybe like 1-3% of the time and was something you picked out of a choice at character creation that acts as a little character quirk.

    • Dances to Podcasts says:

      I remember that this came up in World of Warcraft, a decade ago, with mount animations. They now appear out of thin air. Strange how people keep reinventing the wheel all over the place in this business.

    • HadToLogin says:

      Heh, that’s the main reason why I play as punch-characters when I replay Fallout 1, 2 – those few-seconds anims of holstering/drawing guns when I use some bookcases, doors, computers, whatever.
      Even if it’s only one second, see if for 3600th time and you know you just lost an hour watching same cowboy-holsters-his-pistol animation.

  9. P.Funk says:

    Am I the only one kind of heartened that Chris Roberts is willing to show off buggy alpha footage? We all complain at the ways that the likes of EA and Ubisoft manipulate us with fake preview videos to hype us up. Isn’t it good that the behemoth of Star Citizen can be seen to be both progressing and yet still be imperfect? Isn’t it better we ground ourselves now, early on, and see that the development will lead to a great if not perfect game as it always was going to be? Isn’t this a more realistic way to observe this game come into existence than the usual parade of mega hype the Triple A scene gets us into before the inevitable let down come Wot I Think time?

    Eh? Eh?

    • Ich Will says:

      IT shows an attitude from the devs that is very positive in these times of vertical slices and carefully choreographed “gameplay” that may as well be a cutscene for all the relevance it has to the real game.

    • LionsPhil says:

      I suspect it speaks of the weird layman understanding of how software is written, that it’s buggy because they’re incompetent/lazy/malicious and this will continue as a trend. (And yet also that you can just spend time at the end to debug it and to optimize it and to make it sunshine and flowers with your magic wand of effort. Conventional software development wisdom is to bugfix as early as possible.)

      • P.Funk says:

        What a delightfully noncommittal comment perched elegantly atop a fence.

        • LionsPhil says:

          If you’re looking for absolutes in a complicated topic, I’m afraid you’re out of luck.

          Well. Or looking for tabloid news reporting.

    • Marblecake says:

      This.

    • SuicideKing says:

      Yeah. I mean, to not expect a buggy alpha is just flawed. That said, didn’t they delay the dogfight module to avoid this?

      Anyway, still at least 8 months away from the standalone, and a year away from the full universe, so they should have loads of time. Looks beautiful already.

      • derbefrier says:

        kinda, the reason they delayed was to get the server backend up and going for the persistent universe and from what i have read was the main reason for the delay. the way they presented it to backers was they had a choice. put some form of dogfighting out using cry engines default multiplayer code just so we could have something to play or delay and do it right so hey wouldn’t have to backtrack and start over once their infrastructure was setup. Most agreed it was the right choice to delay. Do it right the first time, don’t rush things just to appease the impatient among us.

        • SuicideKing says:

          Yeah…so i guess the client was still rough around the edges. I guess the real test will be when it goes public…

  10. Morcane says:

    And that is why you don’t use CryEngine, didn’t you hear? Anonymous drunken American #5452532590 tells us it sucks.

  11. staberas says:

    Yeah, not rlly impressed . I mean Rogue systems did the same thing and their demo looked 3 times better than this. I dont know its maybe the audience yells that maybe turned me off.

  12. goettel says:

    Backing Elite left me plenty cash left to just anachronistically BUY this: looks like it’s shaping up fine.

    Good days!

  13. Trondur says:

    I don’t see the dogfighting module being released this or next month. Expect it to be around the same time the hangar module was released last year. Multiplayer looks too buggy at this point. At least they’re being honest with their footage, which can be appreciated, speaking from a backer’s standpoint. I’ll gladly wait for a smooth release of this module, even if it is a few months away. Dark Souls 2 comes out in 11 days so that’ll keep me occupied till then hopefully.

    • derbefrier says:

      yeah I am thinking the same thing. We might see it next month if we are lucky I think but I am in the same boat. Dark Souls 2 will keep me entertained for the next couple months so I aint worried

    • Lukewarm says:

      The game has been running at the Logitech-booth over the weekend. The problem was that the Multiplayer-server crashed right before the event. They had to switch to the Austin-server, which was running a newer build, and during the patching process a few things went wrong and the server had trouble respawning players. That problem was solved after the event and since then – according to the local audiences – the game has been running quite fine.

    • Milkboyslim says:

      DFM/ ARENA COMMANDER.

      Will be released last week of april or early may.

  14. jack4cc says:

    …What’s wrong with those people? Was there free beer involved?

  15. Shadowcat says:

    That missile lock (?) animation is completely batshit insane in the worst possible way. I can’t fathom how anyone thought that was a good idea. I imagine the next Annoying User Interface feature will be to have Clippy pop up and say “It looks like you’re trying to attain missile lock! Would you like help?”

    • LionsPhil says:

      Like many things in this, it seems designed to be TOTALLY AWESOME to see once in a video, with no thought of how much it’ll grate by the point you’re a few hours of play in.

      • Premium User Badge

        Martel says:

        That’s the exact impression I got about this whole thing. Like the launch sequence. That’s fun precisely 1 time.

    • SuicideKing says:

      Yeah i was thinking the exact same thing. The last thing you need in a dogfight is an unnecessarily animated distraction on your HUD.

      I loved the lasers, though, very FreeSpace.

      • Kentauroi says:

        Yeah it reminded me of my reliable old Subach and Prometheus S combo.

        In terms of the missile lock animation I think the problem is how the targeting icon flies out of nowhere to lock onto the ship. The size might also be an issue, but I they could make it much better if they instead used a circular reticule that is always around the target when locking on and shrinks in on it as it attains a lock. Even better, just have a small reticule to begin with and have audio cues and possibly a colour change (like white fading to red) to indicate a lock. The less moving parts distracting you from the fight the better.

        • SanguineAngel says:

          What you describe is how every missle lock reticule I have ever encountered in a game works. A timed animation to signal when lock is achieved. So functionally it’s just the same but instead of shrinking onto the target these 3D segments appear around the reticule until 100% so I struggle to see any actual difference except the obscurity of the size.

          Some people have suggested it’s get old quick but it seemed no more or less annoying than any other animated missile lock reticule ever

          I quite liked it personally. I imagine it’s in for some tweaking in any case

          • SuicideKing says:

            It…i don’t know, it just draws too much attention to itself, i feel.

          • Stardreamer says:

            It’s too slow and too obvious, is the problem. Speed it up, make it a touch more discreet and it’ll be fine.

        • derbefrier says:

          the good thing about this is they have already shown thier willingness to incorporate feedback from backers so expect things like this to change alot over the course of the alpha.

        • SuicideKing says:

          Yup, completely agree (even with the Subach/Prometheus combo! Though i preferred pairing the Kayser with the Subach). Just a subtle indication that lock has been achieved will do…

          Though interestingly now that i think about it, even the FreeSpace missile lock is similar, though of course far less flashy and with an audio cue.

    • uh20 says:

      there should be an automatic-manual missile-lock clutch in the center, and dont forget sport mode, where the missile glows in the tube for a short while before firing in a cool path; spelling your name in open space.

    • Colej_uk says:

      Yeah it was annoying after it happened the first time, they really don’t need an animation that fancy to communicate a lock. They especially don’t need to be working on fancy HUD animations this early on either.

    • Farcelet says:

      It took me a while to figure out he wasn’t launching the alphabet at the other ship. Now I’m disappointed.

  16. SuicideKing says:

    Would you feel G-forces in a stable orbit?

    • uh20 says:

      no? at least as long as you are currently in a stable orbit.
      of course any movement made (or even capture by more than one orbit) would be straining against the current orbit and would give some G-forces, with the current gravity being the multiplier.
      you would also not be affected by atmospheric stuff, only by sudden increases of speed (or by getting yourself into some wobbly orbits) could you get yourself hurt by G’s

    • P.Funk says:

      You feel G forces anytime your body is deviating radically from the direction gravity is throwing you. G force does not necessarily mean gravity, but instead the perception of gravity. Spinning space stations would create the effect of gravity by exploiting this. Its the same way you experience a G force when the elevator rapidly starts or stops. Its not as if the Earth’s gravitational field has changes suddenly at the 12th floor. There’s also the vomit comet and many other examples.

      Basically, fighter pilots pulling 9 Gs aren’t warping gravity, they’re just experiencing a force pressing upon them that is 9 times in excess of gravity on earth for reasons too complicated for me to try and give the appearance I know enough about them to explain from the time I have to browse wikipedia right now.

      EDIT. WHy do I even bother. First sentence of wiki on G-Forces:

      “g-force (with g from gravitational) is a measurement of acceleration felt as weight”

      Simple, neh?

      • jangove says:

        Stupid wiki.

        I took time to register just to point out that “g-forces” is really just something of misnomer, and what we experience as gravity is more properly “acceleration caused by gravity.” Hence the preference for “free-fall” over “zero-g”; at no point are you ever going to be free of the forces of gravity. Although I suppose if you are far enough out from a source of gravitation you might as well be.

        All of which wiki your update rendered pithily irrelevant.

        [Edit]
        On the other hand, I can’t be the only person annoyed by a game that claims “realistic physics” while introducing accelerations that can cause that kind of effect. Or those kinds of maneuvers generally. I don’t object to the game at all — I love these kinds of games — but I object to blathering about realism.

        Come to that, does center of mass really matter for a space craft? I genuinely have no idea — assuming a reasonably rigid frame and the absence of resistance, shouldn’t that be largely irrelevant? I think I’m wrong, but I can’t seem to remember why.

        • TacticalNuclearPenguin says:

          As long as mass matters, center of mass does aswell!

          In any kind of maneuver you’re generating some Gs, and the more you generate the more a mass imbalance becomes apparent.

        • kaffis says:

          Center of mass matters when you’re actually modeling the forces applied by thrusters. If the thrust is not applied in-line with the center of mass, you’ll not only propel the ship forward, but you’ll apply an angular acceleration, as well.

          Thus, as the center of mass changes from getting a wing blown off, your maneuvering thrusters will have to adjust so that one side throttles back (or the other provides counter-thrust with maneuvering thrusters) to prevent the ship from spinning towards the “heavier” side when you apply forward thrust.

    • Premium User Badge

      Gap Gen says:

      Just to be clear, this is another reason why manned space fighters will never exist in reality. Putting humans in combat craft is incredibly wasteful.

  17. HisDivineOrder says:

    Watching clips of that presentation, I can’t help thinking the game is going to crater on impact. People are going to be up in arms. Pitchforks in hand. He’ll talk about how his team got death threats and how it’s hard to do things when people are calling you up in the middle of the night and heavy breathing on the line.

    But he won’t accept that he went well beyond what he should have in hyping and taking money for this game he originally asked for far less to make to completion. Blowing hype out of proportion and taking too much money from the public, no matter how willing they are to give it beforehand, is always a bad idea. The sooner these Kickstarted games realize this, the better off they’ll be.

    Start simple, stay simple. Don’t course correct mid-kickstarter or you’re going to make a hype balloon so big it’ll eventually pop. Ouya learned that the hard way and Oculus is about to…

    • TacticalNuclearPenguin says:

      I don’t know, there are a good variety of reason why i’m hyped so much about SC, yet i didn’t feel anything like that with Ouya or the Rift, mostly because their limitations were in plain sight to those willing to look for them.

      With SC, when it comes to reading the comment of the naysayers, i don’t see arguments that appear to originate from a thorough research and understanding of what they REALLY are trying to do, what are the real promises and compromises as opposed to some overblown fan theories that are trying to pass as confirmed features.

      Even when people got up in arms against A:CM i couldn’t fathom a reason for that, as if it wasn’t obvious enough from the very start. The most popular argument to explain the pre-release hype was that “it looked better”, as if looking slightly better could make it good.

      I guess i’m passing now as someone who thinks he’s more clever than others. Fine. maybe i’m not good with words and i’m giving the wrong impression, then let me put it another way: when and IF i’ll read the comment of an individual who’s deeply informed about SC, all it’s actual goals and all it’s recent achievements, that yet still thinks with good reason that this game is going to fail, then and ONLY then i’ll shut up for good.

    • Milkboyslim says:

      We are way passed that point..

    • waltersphnesphne says:

      Wow, sounds to me like somebody aspires to a life of mediocrity

  18. ChromeBallz says:

    I seem to remember other games where Robert’s promised everything but wasn’t able to deliver. SC has been following the same pattern as those other games for quite a while now and it’s strange how people can’t see it.

    Just because it’s crowdfunded doesn’t mean it’s going to be the next gift from god. Roberts has been known to have mighty ambitions but very poor managerial skills to actually achieve them…

    • Premium User Badge

      DarkLiberator says:

      So you’re a time traveler? You seem to be very knowledgeable on what precisely SC will be like at launch.

      • Pecisk says:

        He’s talking about former expierence with particular developer. As anything, it should be taken into consideration. It doesn’t mean SC will face same faith. Just people need to be more cautious and vigilant.

    • Lukewarm says:

      I remember even more games by Chris Roberts that where exceptional – and even one game that was delievered in just nine months. What is about people that they only remember the failures but not the achievements?

  19. Sathure says:

    The bugs are to be expected this early in. The game has only been in development for about one and half years. Considering how large and all the different systems in the game. PAX Attendees got to play it at the Logitech booth. Reports are that it was perfectly stable so the presentation aspect seems to be chalked up to Murphy’s law. There are numerous videos from the booth.

    I’m heavily looking forward to both, but Elite seems to get a much more positive spin here on RPS. Considering it was in development for almost a decade before the Crowd Campaign started it’s expected it’s going to look a little bit farther along than a game that’s had 1 1/2 years. I’m excited to play both however, just waiting for Elite to not cost me an entire weeks budget to get in..

    • TacticalNuclearPenguin says:

      “Elite seems to get a much more positive spin here on RPS. ”

      It’s british and it has got less money, plus their CEO doesn’t look like your tipical american drunkard.

      That’s all it takes to win here.

      Jokes aside, none seems to remember how much negativity ED got back in the days of obscurity, with zero information and the huge vaporware cloud looming all over it. Now they show a steady development and suddenly SC, that always put out a lot of stuff mid development with a lot of community participation, is seen as a capitalistic and scammy attempt to “sell ships” and go away with the money, only because there’s nothing yet to play even if it’ll take a lot to develop it and it didn’t start as early as ED.

      All because Braben was simply more cautios and only shown stuff when it was done. This kind of “caution” speaks quite loud about the quality of the gaming community nowadays.

      Besides, wanna know why SC sells ships? Because they’re well engineered, passion oozing things that are supposed to make sense and to actually work in a simulative context that takes their elements into consideration, be it the center of mass, or thruster positioning/power, or mass itself with and without cargo and so on an so forth. They feel alive, their in-lore manufacturer has a back story that ties into the whole universe’s story, even for the weapons and cargo modules. They are a manifestation of the designer’s love for this game, in exactly the same way as their goofy and excited livestreams can show.

      Then it’s obvious that people want more, especially since they spent so little to actually have the game complete with pre-alpha access, and that’s why Elite is getting less money, because it’s colder and ancient approach is driving a lot of people off.

      Then again, it’s convenient for the naysayers to state that the latter is receiving far less founding because of an imaginary more “honest” nature.

      • insectecutor says:

        Chris Roberts is British. He made Stryker’s Run on the BBC Micro. Now he’s making this. Must be a strange life.

        • TacticalNuclearPenguin says:

          Not saying he isn’t, they also have a british studio led by his brother working mostly for SQ42.

          But still, different vibes and all that. I guess i’m just angry that i have to pay for ED in bloody pounds!

          Epic game btw!

    • Pecisk says:

      “I’m heavily looking forward to both, but Elite seems to get a much more positive spin here on RPS.”

      Because SC has been hyped for almost year now beyond limits in other media? While FD actually dilvered playable version of ED. Yeah, ED alpha costs, but it was done because of limiting test group, as they have to work with their feedback.

      Also some things need clarification – ED was started a little bit more than year ago, right after Kickstarter. It was in *plans* for 8 years, with concepts written down, prototype code written, but all graphics, all actual code was done during this last year. So yeah, FD just worked faster while CR looked around for outsorcing.
      It would be good for media to be critical towards both games, true. ED just did their homework and provided playable alpha first, and gave it to test to media too. Now SC DFM is reality, we can hear more actual comparitions of flight and combat models, graphics, etc.

      • derbefrier says:

        you know most articles i have read have been fairly critical of SC’s ambition and is often filled with nice little buzzwords like “feature creep”. I know the fans(mostly the fans) and the devs themselves have done a good job hyping up the game during its initial kickstarter but the media has been consistently cynical in their coverage of Star Citizen ever since it started raking in all of the money and kept adding more and more stretch goals. To be fair as you said the media was skeptical of ED until they got to play it. I expect the same to happen with SC when the DFM is released in a month or two.

      • screecwe says:

        They were sitting on a completely finished engine that was tailored perfectly for their needs, as well as all the planning/features planned out in a studio that was already at capacity. CIG had to pull apart and engine, and rebuild it which has eaten a LOT of their production time. They had to rewrite the entire network backend to function for their purposes. They had to rewrite the AI, as the Cryengine’s AI is designed for FPS. They had to ramp up multiple studios, hire tons of people, and they were delayed in getting new accommodations for their Austin team.

        Of COURSE Elite is further along in development.

      • Lukewarm says:

        CIG simply puts a stronger emphasize on immersion, which, amon others things, forces them to develop all ships fully designed and fully functional interiors. Frontier on the other hand has the freedom to do “the smart thing” and focus on core gameplay mechanics first. Plus: Frontier already had a development studio, CIG had to build that infrastructure from scratch. All in all Frontier had some advantages concerning the development process, and they have made the best out of it. Good job, but that’s no reason to suddenly write off CIG.

  20. Pecisk says:

    I was waiting for DFM reveal – even I am not hyped about SC and dislike their marketing model with presales, still I expected to be blown away a little bit due of delays and massive war chest CIG have now. Instead I am… quite bored to be frank. I even don’t know that claims about SC having better “shinies” hold any truth (keeping in mind that SC uses off the shelf CryEngine3 and ED has it’s own engine tuned). But as always, I just think SC is not a game for me – but I guess it will be for lot of others. Same as with ED and Limit Teory.

    Now I can compare flying models between ED and SC a little bit – first feels more action packed and lively. SC feels more like turrets in space. Again, to each of it’s own, but somehow I feel I won’t be playing SC any time soon. I don’t say I dislike it, or it’s bad – it is just not for me I guess.

    • TacticalNuclearPenguin says:

      CryEngine 3 is no more, now there’s CryEngine only, but that is a nitpick.

      Not really off the shelf though, as they rebuilt the whole net code which was the major reason for the delay, which sadly wasn’t really only about adding more shiny, or they’d have something even better to show now, arguably.

      A lot of parts of the engine have been rewritten to conform to the very different scope. So we have two sides: one is ED with a purpose built engine but with way less graphical prowess, the other is an heavily modified version of an already great engine to begin with.

      Some features will work better in ED and i think their engine is the reason they can go for a truly seamless universe, while SC on the other hand has an FPS portion which is obviously the easiest for them to implement and, if “their” CryEngine will work properly in the scope of the game, i’d say they have some decent overall technical level.

      SC and Kingdom Come are also the first games that i know to use the newest PBR technique found on the latest CryEngine iteration, so it’s not like they’re half assing it.

    • Lukewarm says:

      The turn rates were increased for the demo. Plus: It’s all WIP. Hoever, there are some busy discussions about the flight model in the forums (and I’m absolutely on the side of “moar speed, less turn rate please!”).

      P.S.: Make no mistakes. It’s not like CIG isn’t doing a lot of rewriting and research with the engine as well. For example the multiplayer-modules was completely replaced, the physics are in the process of getting more or less completely rewritten.

      • Milkboyslim says:

        Plus they are getting help from Crytek and have former Crytek dev working on the game to help them i that front. The engine is getting overhauled bit by bit. As it continues to change to better suit the game.

  21. ilves says:

    I’m a backer, and also work in software development, so I’m not scared away by that reveal. Pre-alphas be pre-alphas. In general the feedback from people who played the game at PAX said it was good. That said I’m not a crazy fanboy and am totally aware that this could still bomb, but based on the feedback and reports they give out weekly I think they’re still on track to do what they claimed at the start (as for whether the game will actually be FUN is a totally different matter). As for Elite, since everyone keeps bringing it up, I’ll probably pick that up as well, not sure why there is a fan competition for which is best… competition is always good.

  22. BobsLawnService says:

    Is that all they have to show for 2 years of development? It’s a bit embarrassing isn’t it? It’s really looking like a case of the Emperors New Clothes. I just hope that Chris Roberts is self aware enough to realize how pathetic this whole thing is looking and cuts back on the promises and starts working on writing a game now.

    I’m starting to feel really glad that I haven’t spent money on this.

    • Lukewarm says:

      Twelve to fourteen months of actual development. Principial development startend around February 2013, with some groundwork and concepts done before that and some assets taken over from the prototype.

      Besides, they had a server problem during the presentation, which was fixed after the event and according to local audiences the game has been running quite smoothly since then. Plus: The flight model was adjusted for better turn rates and easier gameplay for the event.

      Apart from that, yeah, the game looks pathetic: http://imgur.com/a/Z1Fie

      • BobsLawnService says:

        It is definitely pretty, but a game is more than just pretty models. Their are modders working in their basements who can deliver more than this. If they can’t even get simple dog fighting working after almost two years then they have problems and should stop talking and start delivering.

      • Milkboyslim says:

        How can a game in pre-alpha be or look pathetic? this person…you need to get your eyes checked (unless that was sarcasms..;p)

        Dude they have not been working on the Dogfighting for almost two years. They were working on the FIRST piece of the game. Which the hangar modular, were people were can look at their ships. Get your rabbit in line. They started on DFM full stream in the middle of last year . When the later was about to be released.

        Also show me these modders that are working out of their basements that can do better please? don’t bring up No man Sky or Enemy Fighter. Totally different games from CIG’s game. One is on a much larger scope then the other.

        Tell me which modders can produce this?: http://imgur.com/a/CF6UZ

        One more thing, CIG has a thing going so were the community members; /modders/modeler/artist/professionals alike are creating a ship to be in the game officially. An there is a modding area. There is some amazing stuff. But no where near the level of detail and polish of some of the stuff shown for this game. Never the less they are all highly talented.

        So its rude for you to say this. Given you would never say this to their faces.

        Gets your facts right.

    • waltersphnesphne says:

      The game is being developed in a modular fashion, in parallel. That means there are multiple studio’s working on different parts of the game simultaneously. The dog fighting module isn’t ‘all they’ve done’. It’s just all they’re prepared to show us at this stage (as they said from the very beginning).

  23. Lukewarm says:

    Nevermind

  24. waltersphnesphne says:

    You people bitching and whining aren’t very clever. First, the dogfighting module isn’t even alpha, there supposed to be bugs, every single game by every studio under the sun has glitches at this stage of development. Second, patching was later found to be the culprit, not the game build. Later people played the game on the showroom floor with a tenth of the glitches we saw during that demo. Grow up retards.

  25. jrpatton says:

    RockPaperShotgun: We’re going to boycott PAX!

    Oh, except if some interesting news comes from there…

  26. krisk7 says:

    Yes, they were using an unstable build due to server problems.
    There is a playable version on Logitec stand at PAX everyone can try.
    I wonder how many haters will have courage to repeat their statements without feeling rediculous afer the final game is released.