Wing Bystander: Star Citizen (Kinda) Playable Next Week

Garages are always more exciting in space.

Are you ready to leave your boring old terrestrial life behind and start anew among the stars? Well soon, you’ll be able to, but only in the “broke college grad” sense where you take refuge in a garage while selling superfluous organs to pay off loans. OK, I may have read a little too far between the lines on that last part, but Star Citizen‘s first playable module is very much one small step into Chris Roberts’ insanely ambitious new galaxy – not so much a giant leap. You get a hangar. You can explore it (!!!!!!). That’s pretty much the whole thing.

Speaking with Eurogamer, Roberts said that Star Citizen’s first playable module will be in the hands of backers next week. In it, you can explore your hangar, hop into (but not fly) any ships you might have backed, and even drive a buggy because walking is for pitiful Earth Citizens.

Not terribly exciting, but an important first step nonetheless. On the upside, multiple modules will be doing bombing runs on our free time in the coming months. One of them will even include ships giving in to their latent animal instincts and fighting like dogs. It’ll apparently be out before the year draws to a close. Just in time for Space Christmas? We can only hope.

Star Citizen certainly sounds excellent, but can Roberts and co realize their heaving goliath of a vision – largely on crowdfunded money, no less? That’s been the question of the hour since day one. Next week, we finally get to see a brief glimmer of how it’s coming along. Are you excited about running around in a garage?


  1. BobbyDylan says:

    Looking forward to slipping into the seat of my Connie and making pewpewpew noises.

  2. rebb says:

    Fxck Yxs !

  3. UpsilonCrux says:

    Another Star Citizen snarkticle

  4. zappeo says:

    I’m going to sit on the pilot’s seat (is sitting already an implemented feature? I’d love a sitting feature) for hours and pretend I’m in space giving both middle fingers to everybody who’s not.

  5. bstard says:

    Hmm that video on their main page has an honorable message, but the rhythm of it stinks very much. Please have someone who has a little poetic feeling have a look at it.

  6. Quasar says:

    Looking like a good news day for men in space suits standing on the right hand side of sci-fi rooms.

  7. Talahar says:

    It should be noted that this is very much early in development, so no one should expect a perfectly
    working piece of software right out the door.
    Rough edges and complete breakage are both a matter of high possibility.
    Of course even this knowledge will not hinder the uneducated masses from creating whine threads on the official forums. :D

    • Harlander says:

      Hell, I’ve got a bachelor’s degree and I fully intend to kvetch if it’s buggy :p

  8. rustybroomhandle says:

    It’ll be just like Dear Esther, but IN SPACE!!

  9. tikey says:

    I’ve just realized that there are new stretch goals.
    One of them is a battlecruiser :drools:
    I hope capital ship piloting/command is well implemented. I’ve been longing for a good cap ship sim for ages.

    • Taidan says:

      The $13 Million stretch goal was “Command and Control Center – Supervise the battle from the deck of your Idris or Destroyer (class TBA) with advanced C&C packages that allow you to tie all of your ships together and assume central command from the 3rd seat.”

      They hit that one back at the start of July.

      • Synesthesia says:

        Oh dear.

        I would be having full body nerdgasms if i didn’t feel so skeptical at this fulfilling all of its promises.

  10. Iskariot says:

    I will wait for the finished game.
    In the meanwhile I will satisfy my spacesim needs with the most beautiful X Rebirth when it is released in November.

  11. BobsLawnService says:

    I will continue to be cautiously optimistic until all the promised features have been released.

  12. Ninja Foodstuff says:

    I have a question about this game: are you basically stuck with the ship you start with, or do you have the option to upgrade later? And does upgrading involve playing the game or spending real cash?

    • Tiller says:

      Players not part of the pledging (and the lower tier pledges) start off with an Aurora either through completing the Star Citizen Campaign and gaining citizenship, money, and the ship for their service or they opt out and owe a loan for the ship that must be payed off. Every ship has a niche but all can be upgraded, reconfigured to another model type of the same ship, overclocked, and tweaked to whatever degree you’re willing to go and dump game credits into. While an Aurora is the “starting ship” a good pilot should be able to make good use of them, and fighting is only one small part of the full game. From there you can move into any ship in the game so long as you can aquire one.

      Everything in the game is bought with in game credits earned from doing in game stuff including new ships. The crowdfunding campaign is the only period where you can buy ships for cash and other trinkets because they need incentives for people to drop money and that ends sometime in November. Though you can earn upgrades and ships through trading, missions, finding and salvaging from a wreck, or stealing vessels after boarding it and pirating someone elses cargo.

      There is no cash shop, but you can buy in game credits with real money up to a monthly limit. However, the limit will prevent people from just dropping money in the game so they have to wait a few months before those credits add up to something expensive. You won’t be able to even purchase the most powerful stuff in the game with credits either. There are many things like a Bengel carrier needs to be found and refurbished or highjacked plus alien vessels like the Vandul’s need to be taken out with minor damage, salvaged, and completely refitted to support a humans body. It was deemed an option so people can stay in the game if they didn’t play often, but that doesn’t mean its not Pay to Win to a degree.

    • Taidan says:

      According to that which hath been spoken so far, You will mainly be buying your extra ships, and upgrading their equipment, with in-game cash. I’m pretty sure they’ve stated a few times that once you’ve bought your copy, every ship in the game will be obtainable without having to spend real money..

      The best way to look at Star Citizen is as a single-player game which has an optional multiplayer option thrown in on top. (Details here: link to ) You can even run a private, moddable server, if you want to play with a few friends but don’t want to deal with the wider internet.

      That said, it looks like there will be a lot of Real-Money-Transaction stuff going on on top of that, mainly for cosmetics and they will probably still sell ships as they are doing at the moment. It’s all pretty murky so far, so a bit of wariness probably wouldn’t hurt.


      Actually, what Tiller said above sounds a lot more informed. I’d take that information over anything I’ve written.


  13. Cik says:

    I’ll be siting in my cockpit with tissues in-hand (wink).

  14. Triplanetary says:

    Any estimates on when the game’s pledge funds will exceed the GDP of Tuvalu (2012 est.: $37 million)?

  15. Arglebargle says:

    Obligatory snarky comment. And good luck to you early adopters….Maybe they’ll come through.

    Someone should really ask Roberts how he funded the Wing Commander movie. And where he required obligatory team-bonding meetings to be held back in the Origins days.

    • Liudeius says:

      I don’t doubt that Roberts will deliver a game worth our investment,
      I just doubt it won’t be pay to win when certain players are starting out with a net hangar worth of over $4000 and will be able to buy in game items from day one.

      • Triplanetary says:

        So stick with single-player if you’re that worried about it. The game, as advertised, won’t be purely competitive anyway.

  16. Liudeius says:

    I’m going to do SOOO many doughnuts around my Aurora LX.

    I think you can also swap around loadouts and play with the ship animations, so it will be pretty neat. Like going to a car dealership and playing with the buttons before a test drive.

  17. NickNerd says:

    Oh man, Space Christmas is my favorite holiday.

  18. kaffis says:

    I think it says something about this game that this article went 3 days without a pun thread.

    On that note, I do believe the Hangar Module will be the star-t of something space-tacular.