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BitesBack / Mar 12, 2016 / Star Citizen


Greetings Citizens,

On the fence about Star Citizen? Why not give it a try and see what we’re building! For the next week, we’ve enabled Free Fly access to all accounts… FOR EVERY CURRENTLY FLYABLE SHIP IN THE GAME OO-AH-AH-AH-AH! This means that anyone can jump in to Star Citizen Alpha 2.2.2 today and fly limited ships like the Scythe, Mustang Omega, and more! The Free Fly event gives everyone access to three unique parts of the Star Citizen experience:

Star Citizen Alpha 2.2.2 – Also known as Crusader or the “mini-PU,” this is the nucleus of the world we’re building! Featuring multiple space stations and environments, scripted missions, places to explore and more, Alpha 2.2.2 is your first look at a much larger universe!
Arena Commander – Arena Commander is a ‘game within a game’ that we’ve used to develop our flight mechanics and ship combat balance. Take on human opponents or an AI swarm in single seat fighter.
Social Module – Interact with other players while you explore our first landing zone, ArcCorp! The Social Module is intended as a starting point for our world building,

You can register for an account here to get started. If you already have an account from a previous Free Fly, you’re all set! Just log in via the Star Citizen launcher. This is the first Free Fly that includes Crusader, so there’s more to explore than ever before. For the next week. Free Fly accounts will have access every ship currently available in the game.
BitesBack / Mar 04, 2016 / Star Citizen


Hi everyone and happy Friday!

We've been feverishly working to get 2.2.0 ready for you, and we're excited to announce that we're pushing 2.2.0 to Live!!

- Patch Notes: https://robertsspaceindustries.com/comm-link//15211-Star-Citizen-Alpha-220
- Known Issues: https://robertsspaceindustries.com/faq/liveknownissues
- Comm-Link: https://robertsspaceindustries.com/comm-link/transmission/15218-Star-Citizen-Alpha-22-Available

We also have an official feedback 2.2.0 thread here: https://forums.robertsspaceindustries.com/discussion/320849/2-2-0-on-live-the-official-feedback-thread.

As always, if you find a bug or encounter an issue, please take the time to visit the Issue Council at: https://robertsspaceindustries.com/community/issue-council/star-citizen-alpha.

Thanks everyone and see you in the 'Verse!
-WL
BitesBack / Nov 22, 2015 / Star Citizen


Greetings Citizens,



Welcome to week five of the Star Citizen Alpha 2.0. Development updates and yes we’ve finally made it to PTU!



Yesterday, right in the nick of time for the Star Citizen Anniversary Livestream, we released 2.0 to PTU to our first group of intrepid testers who have been rewarded with a “sneak peek” for being so helpful with our Issue Council. The fan feedback over the coming days will be gold to the CIG team and will really help us take the stress testing up a notch so that we can safely release 2.0 to the rest of the community in an incremental fashion.



In fact, that feedback is already paying dividends! This afternoon, we patched the PTU to address some crash bugs and issues with the flyable Avengers. Thanks to the feedback from our vanguard test group, we’re pleased to announce that we are upping the test group significantly in time for the weekend. 15,000 backers, selected based on their activity level in Arena Commander, will be receiving wave two invites shortly! Remember, this is still early testing: expect lots of issues… but all those crashes and disconnects will help make for a better game for everyone.



The team have been working around the clock and over the weekend to get you this build but we won’t let up the pace until 2.0 is available to everyone and want to thank you all for your patience and understanding in what it’s taken to get here. This release really is a landmark in Star Citizen and video games history as we’re now pioneering technology that’s never been undertaken to this scale before and it’s all thanks to the belief in the backers who helped fund the team to make the dream a reality.



We hope you’ve enjoyed reading these reports with all of the gory details thus far, and depending on how things go with PTU, we will keep you updated on progress for increased backer numbers and when we are going fully Live.

The bullet points below really say it all this week…
Gameplay and Engineering

Bug fixing and polish

UI

Bug fixing and polish

Art

Bug fixing and polish

Animation

Bug fixing and polish

Audio

Bug fixing and polish

Blocking Issues

None for “baby” PTU!
Working on any issues needed to increase backer numbers and eventually go Live.
BitesBack / Nov 14, 2015 / Star Citizen

Allthe credit for this gos to BoredGamerUK So please sub his youtube.

So I’ve got pre-made Ultra Quality as well as Performance .cfg which you can grab below or use as a foundation. But it’s worth spending a little bit of time and writing your own.
Ultra Quality Preset – Download
Performance Preset – Download

Warning: Editing stuff in the user.cfg can cause the game client to have problems logging in if values are set incorrectly. If you think something like this might be happening to you, cut or move the file to your desktop and try logging in.

When you write a USER.cfg Basically need to Save a txt document with the name USER.cfg into
INSTALL FOLDER\Cloud Imperium Games\StarCitizen\Public

If user.cfg stops working, rename it to User.cfg. If that doesn’t work, rename it to USER.cfg

Anything you then write or type in their will attempted to be set on game launch
Typing ; before a line will mean that line is ignored, this can be used to describe or put down notes during testing. So everything below You could copy and paste into your USER.cfg and then go down the list and set correctly.

; Custom USER.cfg – This is a command that used to unlock the console to allow commands, I just leave it here in case they change it in a patch so that you need it again!
Con_Restricted = 0

; This Setting basically sets the basis for your config (1-4) 1 is Low but best performance & 4 is Very High Graphics but most intensive. It sets loads of settings & it’s important it’s at the top of the .cfg so that anything below it overwrites parts of it, 3 gives great quality and performance.
sys_spec = 3

; Remove Maxfps to have a less stable max framerate (but it will be at it’s highest), I suggest setting at an achievable level, slower PCs go for 30, Fast PCs set at your monitors Refresh rate. If unsure delete the line it.
sys_maxfps = 60

; If you get screen tearing set VSync to 1 (See Below)
r_VSync = 0
[​IMG]

; Sets the default Gamma
r_Gamma = 1.00

; Setting Texture Sizes, Change The r_TexturesStreamPoolSize based on you Graphics Card Memory 256 for 2GB or Less, 512 for upto 3GB, 1024 for upto 4GB, 2048 for upto 6Gb. If you have over 6GB you can run 4096.
r_TexturesStreamPoolSize = 512

; Set e_ShadowsPoolSize to half of TexturesStreamPoolSize.
e_ShadowsPoolSize = 256

; This setting is how much love is given to shadows, Recommend set to 128 for the most performance 512 is default and you can setup to 4096 for pretty shadows.
e_ShadowsMaxTexRes = 128

; This is again some love to shadows (0.1 – 100) 0.1 will give you best performance while 100 will give you the best shadow quality, I can’t really notice the improvement above 40.
e_ShadowsResScale = 40

; This Setting @ 1 reduces a tiny amount of realism on shadows, almost unnoticeable for some performance increase, but if you want the best looking shadows Change to 0.
e_GsmCache = 1

; AntiAliasing – (0 – 3) Where 0 is NO AA & 2 is More AA than 1, it’s quite resource hungry and you should be using it if you are want jagged lines to be smoothed out. At Higher Resolutions like over 1440p AA becomes less needed as the higher res smooths the lines out naturally, setting over 2 can cause issues and ghosting. 3 is SMAA.
r_AntialiasingMode = 1
; At 0 there is currently a bug that causes intense brightness, I suggest setting at 1.

; Anistropy makes textures look better at angles and distances, (0 – 16) 0 is the best for performance & 16 is the best for Quality. It doesn’t use too much processing power.
r_TexMaxAnisotropy = 16
r_TexMinAnisotropy = 16

; Sharpening – This makes lines look crisp and sharpened / but conversely can make lines look more jagged. I recommend setting this to 1 if you are running in 1440p or higher or if you like the way it looks. 0 is none and 1 is max & Default is 0.25
r_Sharpening = 0.25

; This just makes sure that Mouse Smoothing & Acceleration is turned OFF!
i_Mouse_Accel = 0.0
i_Mouse_Smooth = 0.0

; These are Blur & annoying Visual Settings – Turned Off Here but they are normally Set to 1 by Default. I really dislike Blur, Bloom, HeadBob and colour bleeds in game so I set them all to 0.
r_MotionBlur = 0
r_DepthOfField = 0
r_ShadowBlur = 0
g_radialBlur = 0
r_HDRBrightLevel = 0
r_HDRBloomRatio = 0
hud_bobHud = 0
r_ChromaticAberration = 0

; SSDO is a post process that makes stuff look prettier and more realistic, SSDO is better than SSAO so I make sure SSAO is off. But SSDO can be set to 0 for Performance and up to 2 for Quality, leave SSAO at 0.
r_ssdo = 0
r_ssao = 0

; This when it works in the Cry Engine adds Better Visual Quality to certain objects but is quite hungry. Turn to 0 for more Performance
r_SilhouettePOM = 1

; FOV Settings – FOVs can be set from 25 to 160, CL_FOV is your main FOV. Lower FOVs will reduce the amount your can see on screen, but can give greater performance. Also VR / Multi-monitor setups will want to find an FOV that works for them. VR wise I would suggest 105 – 120. Multi-Monitor I am working on the figures now but I would expect 100 – 160.
CL_fov = 80

; If you want to run Windowed Full Screen Mode then set this to 1
r_FullscreenWindow = 0

; Adding These Lines of Code will fix most Crashes for 1.3
; Enables navigation information updates on a separate thread 0 - off & 1 - on
ai_NavigationSystemMT = 1

; Enable particle threading
e_ParticlesThread = 1

; Use a thread to perform sub-objects meshes merging
e_StatObjMergeUseThread = 1

; Enables threaded rendering while loading
gfx_loadtimethread = 1

; The number of internal physics threads
p_num_threads = 1

; Enable the JobSystem. 0: The Jobsystem is disabled, each job is executed in its invoking thread. 1: The JobSystem is enabled, each job is invoked in one of the worker threads.
sys_job_system_enable = 0

; The Following Options Choose which Thread to run processes on, you can experiment but for 1.3 these settings will reduce crashes.
; Specifies the physical CPU index main will run on
sys_main_CPU = 0

; Specifies the physical CPU index physics will run on. On my i7 4790k I change this to 2.
sys_physics_CPU = 1

; Specifies the physical CPU file IO thread run on. On my i7 4790k I change this to 4.
BitesBack / Nov 14, 2015 / Star Citizen


Greetings Citizens,

Star Citizen Alpha 2.0. development update. Week Four… let’s go!

Well it’s been a fun week working on the game. As much as it can be stressful at times, it’s easy to forget what an amazing project we’re all working on thanks to you guys with your incredible support. Everything else aside, we are all really happy to be part of the team building the dreams in to a reality! The First-Person Universe will be something that has not been done before in the history of video games so any project this ambitious is always going to be a challenge – and who doesn’t love a challenge! Nothing worthwhile comes easy.



Star Citizen is a game we’re building to be enjoyed for many, many years to come and we’re now reaching at a turning point on a very special journey together with the 2.0 release. We hope we don’t leave you waiting much longer for this first real taste of what Star Citizen can become. It was a tough decision to make in putting our efforts behind this one huge release because it always had the potential for added risk for delays in production but we know it was the right decision to make for good of the project because it will give us the right foundations to build upon for the long term. A Publisher might not have been so brave because they don’t have the BDCE (Best Damn Community Ever!).



Get out your lucky pants and three-leaf clovers out because Murphy’s Law was in full force this week! No, it’s not a new game feature – we suffered some unfortunate news in our Lead FPS Programmer falling off his bicycle and breaking his wrist! This certainly wasn’t in the schedule so with him out of action for a few weeks we’ve had to pool some resources from other areas to help pitch in with getting 2.0 out of the door. It’s certainly not what we needed at such a critical time in the project but these things do happen.



In better news, we’re very nearly finished with our Excludibir process, with just one more QA report thus far of missing assets from the Release build with the Gladius causing a black screen hang on the Tutorial of the game. So that’s been addressed and should hopefully be the end of it for 2.0.



The new ship UI screens we posted footage were very warmly received last week which is exactly the kind of feedback that really gets a buzz around the office and makes our community such a great group of people to work for. We are never totally sure on how something will be received until it’s out there so that was certainly a good way to dip our toe in the water with this one to check the temperature with you guys. We have now finished up the last of the gameplay code hooks so that is in full test now to make sure that clicking all of those buttons will actually do something! Please note that the sections that are labelled as “System Offline” in the video will not be functional in this release but will be coming in subsequent patches as we iterate on it.



The item component for EMP is being hooked up and in put in to full test this week so we’re eagerly anticipating the results of that and Design have been busily reviewing the new IFCS Flight Modes – SCM (Space Combat Maneuvering), Precision and Cruise. These are coming all along nicely but it’s always weird to begin with when first testing out a new control system. It often takes time to get familiar with them and we want to ensure that you guys get a solid base so that we it feels comfortable and fun and can then iterate from there.

The worst bug of all bugs that’s been a thorn in our side over the past week has been server degradation. It took the whole QA two days to track this very nasty issue down but one of our programmers has just at the time of writing this report committed a fix which we hope will be verified as fixed in the next QA build. The issue was gradually preventing players getting in to a game server after an extended play period so we came to suspect a leak and had to go about back-tracking the sequence of events leading to the issue to look for what might have caused it. It was an awkward one to repro because it needed a large amount of players testing for hours on end. We eventually managed to trace it back to an issue with the ship selector and the player accounts so we really hope that this fix will alleviate a number of related issues that we were experiencing on the server-side. It’s been a perfect example of how one small discrepancy in the build can have huge knock-ons!

Speaking of knock-ons, we’ve also unearthed some new Blockers on our Release builds with the as listed below in the bullets but fortunately we have workarounds for them all in our Profile Builds so have been able to continue our work – however, this sadly means that the build is not ready for public consumption yet!

Production, QA and Dev are doing some serious triage work on the remaining unresolved issues and looking for any creative problem solving to get a solid release candidate together. We’re making some tough decisions to agree upon what is classed as a “must-fix” for Release. The triage will help us minimize the chance of any further unnecessary knock-ons and get you something to play sooner rather than later!

Below we have a list of high level items that you might like to scan over to see what the various teams have been focused on this past week…
Gameplay and Engineering

Fixed a major issue where the server performance would degrade over time
Fixing memory leaks in the new zone system when destroying vehicles
Working on fixes for Quantum Travel
Working on a fix where multiple ships going to the same destination don’t end up inside each other
Working on a fix for being teleported back to the start point when emerging from Quantum Travel
Implementation and balancing of a new fuel type – Quantum Fuel
This depletes in Quantum Travel and requires players to refuel or risk being stranded in deep space
Network optimizations
Performance optimizations
General bug fixing

UI

Bug fixing and polish
Removed the tool tip to heal other players when you are near an injured player, since we have temporarily removed the ability to do so until we fix the animation for the medpen.

Art

Bug fixing and polish

Animation

Bug fixing and polish. ADS is much improved, and I’m looking forward to doing more FPS combat playtests around the stations outside of the Armistice zone.

Audio

Mastering and implementation of recorded dialogue
Designed custom convolution reverbs, mainly for interior spaces
Polishing of audio across the whole of the crusader map
Working on improving the sound design for EVA
Continued improvements for ship fly-bys
General bug fixing

Blocking Issues

Server degradation preventing causing spawning issues (fix committed)
Quantum Travel causing a crash on Release
Player not able to pick up a weapon for FPS at Security Post Kareah on Release – BREAKING: This is fixed!
Climbing in to small and medium ships causing the player to spawn at point origin (0,0,0) on Release
Low repro cases of Quantum Travel failing to deliver the player to the intended mark on Release
Refueling is broken at CryAstro
BitesBack / Nov 07, 2015 / Star Citizen


Greetings Citizens,

What has happened this past week in Star Citizen Alpha 2.0. development I hear you cry?

Well we’ve still been tweaking, polishing, and refining any remaining pieces of content whilst the rest of team go to battle with the list of Blocker and Critical bugs so this week’s report will read a little more like a QA report! We are battening down the hatches and getting on with some good old fashioned bug smashing!

The 2.0 release stream is in lockdown now and the Star Citizen Team are doing everything in their power to get this build ship-shape for you guys. Each developer has to be extra careful in testing their work and getting it peer reviewed with risk assessment for approval by Production before it’s allowed in to our precious stream. This is welcome news to Production because we’ve encountered some really frustrating bugs recently, that on top of our more persistent issues we could really have done without. Huge new technological systems like Large World, EVA and Multicrew Ships taking a little longer than expected is no big surprise, in fact it’s more or less expected! But what you don’t want (or at least do your best to reduce) is delays on the logistical side of managing the build process.



One issue we had recently was with our exclusion system – Exludibur! – a system that we use to configure what is and is not in any given build (without an exclusion system, we’d be releasing hundreds of gigabytes of un-optimized, partially-completed game elements with each release!) So when some of the environmental geometry had not been listed for inclusion in the QA build from the 2.0 release stream, it was no surprise that when it got tested that it simply wasn’t there in the game! And what makes it worse is that when that happens, the code still tries to call the geometry that isn’t there, gets very upset, and crashes! We still managed to test our main Game Dev stream to progress with our work but it’s things like this that still take time in our Production and we need to focus to get it right.

Another issue we might have been able to avoid was to do with a new Main Menu that we’re making for you. As you may or may not know, we have internal versions of the build called “Profile” that can sometimes produce slightly different test results when compared to a “Release” version of the game. Release is the best for the most authentic testing conditions but we sometimes need the Profile build for some debug options or to get around issues such as a black screen hang that was happing in one of our Release builds earlier in the week. The black screen was due to the introduction of a new main menu screen that wasn’t hooked up in that mode and therefore unable to test. The Profile build however was able to bypass the issue, so we could continue our work and test the rest of the content in the game. Again, it’s just another consideration in the Production that we have to make sure is checked off to get it ready for release.



I’m sure you’re all wanting to hear a little more about the Main Menu now – right? So the call for the Main Menu was a decision made to improve your user experience by helping players get in to the game more quickly with the initial boot up and also when coming back out of any standalone gameplay such as a gamemode in the Arena Commander simulation. We are now allowing the player choose whatever they want to load with this new menu, and avoid having to wait for content that they’re not looking to access. You guys have been speaking up about this on the forums, so we’ve listened and are doing something about it! We hope you approve of it once it’s all implemented in 2.0 and I’m sure you’ll let us know if you don’t! Just please note that it’s a first iteration.



In other UI related news, we have been putting the finishing touches on the ship screens which you will see in one of this week’s update videos which shows you the all new and improved Avenger, Cutlass, and Constellation. These are again a first iteration with lots more work left to do (ie. Adding the wireframe ship to the Avenger) and the “System Unavailable” messages should give you an indication of cool things still to come with this multi-layered system for managing your beloved spaceships.



So that’s just about it for this week’s report. We really hope that we won’t need to write another, or many, of these reports because we are certainly “close” to the 2.0 release, it’s just really, really hard to predict just how close we are. It’s a tough fight in the 2.0 trenches but we have an incredibly talented and dedicated team that no amount of bugs can keep down for too long! So thank you for your patience, we will keep you posted but please know that it IS coming!

Now here are the high level items broken down for you by the team…
Gameplay and Engineering

Looking at a Quantum Travel bug where two ships can come out of travel inside each other
Improved engineering screen FoV for multicrew ships
Continued work to improve the EVA experience
Improving weapon movement for FPS combat
Fixed up an issue where dying in FPS combat left the weapon floating in the air
Performance optimisation
General bug fixing

UI

Added support for notification of REC awards
Lots of bug fixing & polish:
Multicrew ship screens
mobiGlas Mission Manager
mobiGlas Journal
Added respawn countdown
Quantum Travel HUD
Visual skinning of transport elevator console panel
Mission Manager live updating, when you have it open
•* More polish and bug fixing

Art

Final environmental polish and LODs
Final lighting changes to Crusader map
Final VFX polish on Ship damage, Crusader map and EMP
Finalizing LODs for Avenger
Optimisation for Retaliator

Animation

Further refining base character locomotion
Additional work on finalising stocked and pistol locomotion

Audio

Dialogue session has been completed so the mastering of these assets is now progressing
Working on improving the sound design for EVA
Continued improvements for ship fly-bys (see video update for more details)
General bug fixing

Blocking Issues

Probe for Quantum Travel marker isn’t working properly so the player can’t travel to a mission location
Missing space station geometry due to Excludibur (now resolved and verified fixed)
Missing geometry for Arc Corp elevator due to Excludibur
Server crash when spawning Multicrew ships
General server stability issues with 17+ players in-game; but vastly improved from just 2 players when playing two weeks ago!
Black screen hang on boot in Release (now resolved and verified fixed)
BitesBack / Oct 31, 2015 / Star Citizen


Greetings Citizens,

Welcome back to our third weekly update on Star Citizen Alpha 2.0. development!

We’re getting just as excited as you guys are to get this release out so the team are pushing hard every single day to make that happen! The patience and understanding of game development in the Star Citizen Community is often astounding and refreshing to hear so we wanted to let you know that it really drives the team on to hear such words of encouragement. We are really not that far from delivering this huge amount of new content to you all but game development is a complex process that takes time to pull everything together and stabilize it to be ready for a good user experience. We totally understand any frustrations you may have in waiting for such a tantalizing release so we will always do our best to give you visibility on the progress of it, warts and all, so you’re not left in the dark and we’ll keep addressing the main priorities and look to release it the very moment that it’s good and ready!



We’ve described much of the content that’s been implemented already, so you should have a good idea of all the cool new features you’re going to be getting your hands on, we’ve got the ships and environment ready and we are very much in to the polish phase of the release with the addition of things like energy Recharge Stations to various satellites. The vast majority of the gameplay experience is there to play and we’re really locking things down in terms of avoiding any major new additions to the code base in order to stabilize the build and avoid the risk of knock-ons.



Performance improvements are a typical part of any video game release. Despite making things as optimal as possible along the way, there’s always a big push towards the back-end of the development cycle in order to bring everything in to acceptable frame rate levels… and we’re not quite there, yet! If we released it to you now, it really wouldn’t do any of the content justice because it needs to play nice and smoothly and be relatively crash-free. Some crashes are inevitable with introduction of new codebase systems coming online so essentially just bugs that we just need to churn through as fast as we can.

Read more

BitesBack / Oct 29, 2015 / Star Citizen


THE FUTURE OF FLIGHT

Since the initial release of Arena Commander, we’ve increased top speed, scaled down the availability of boost, and reduced the power of maneuvering thrusters. While these have all had drastic effects on the game, none have been a fundamental change in the way the game actually works – which goes to show how much stat balance can affect a system! However, behind the scenes, we have been working on some deeper changes to the flight model, and are nearing a point where some of that work can be put in front of players.
Flight Modes (aka IFCS 2.0)

The flashiest new feature is the additional flight modes: Precision, Space Combat Maneuvers (SCM), and Cruise. These are all IFCS profiles that focus ship behaviors toward the highly different goals of close tolerance adjustments, combat actions, and long distance flight respectively. Though you can only use one flight mode at a time, coupled/decoupled and the collection of flight assists can still be used to further customize handling.
Precision Mode

When you take off you’ll start out in Precision Mode. In Precision Mode, the maximum velocity is significantly reduced and the throttle and acceleration are rescaled to provide improved control when maneuvering in close proximity to other objects. This makes take off and landing much easier, but will also improve control around other objects such as asteroids, derelict craft or when approaching other live craft during In-Flight Refueling or Boarding maneuvers.

Read more