Star Citizen’s biggest event of the Year: CitizenCon took place over the weekend, October 8. It included many presentations from top level game designer showing off the latest tech progress concepts for the future and even a two plus hour long chat with Chris Roberts just getting into the details of everything going on with the progress of Star Citizen.
So in this case, we have summarized all presentations under related titles. We tried to gather all the most important and interesting updates and new features that players have been waiting for a long time. You will find everything related to the Alpha 4.0 updates and upcoming big Pyro system features with details.
Planet Pyro Update
The first presentation of CitizenCon focused on the planets of Pyro. This is expected for a long time and was an absolutely beautiful showcase. What made some of the planets and moons more in interesting that the giant land formations and landmarks. Those could actually be seen from space. There were some massive craters or scars on the side of the planet that exploring closer would reveal entirely different biomes as you may check in the picture below.
really cool stuff extremely high fidelity and after watching it it made me realize well they’re probably gonna have to do a pass on some of Stanton’s planets after this. The presentation also showcased a reel of the outlaw lifestyle in Pyro system. The ambiance of Pyro gives the vibes of a place where there are illegal events more frequently.
The planetary tour included shots of PlanetSide settlements and some extremely impressive visuals of Ruin station at the main Hub of Pyro. You can even see a Javelin parked outside the station for scale and it looks absolutely epic. The whole Ambiance of the system compared to Stanton is kind of like Mad Max compared to Blade Runner or something just totally different vibes.
The second presentation of CitizenCon 2022 was about investigations. This new feature was a presentation about a concept for a new Mission tree so very little had actually been developed. But the main idea is a new investigative mission tree that doesn’t hold your hand, instead has you look for clues to solve mysteries by either finding hard evidence or enough circumstantial evidence to make a good prediction about a case.
It’s certainly interesting new update. if the missions themselves would particularly wouldn’t be much intriguing but integrating some of their tools or assets to other bigger missions might be more interesting.
Underground Facilities Update
3rd presentation was focused on the new underground facility locations. These locations currently serve as Mission points in the game but are just woefully lacking and simple at the moment. The updated designs show massive complexes with multiple entry points, hangers, above ground offices, underground roads and tunnel systems with bulkheads and all kinds of production and server rooms.
The facilities are designed to handle hour-long missions and they look like they could handle that and maybe more. The artwork looks fantastic and I hope these locations get a real priority going forward considering their design can be used throughout pretty much all the systems down the road.
Sadly it does seem like most of the work is still in the very early concept phase. So it could be quite a while before we actually start seeing these in game.
Flight Mechanics and Speed
The fourth presentation was about completely Reinventing the traversal and combat speeds in the game. Currently, ships can engage each other while flying at over 1,000 meters per second which to be honest just is a less enjoyable experience. There’s lots of jousting instead of actual turning and dog fighting. The enemies are often so far away that you’re just shooting at UI markers instead of actually seeing the ships which was not the vision for the game. That was a long time argued problem in Star Citizen.
Standard Control Mode
So the developers have created Master modes that allows pilots to switch between two different flight modes. There’s SCM AKA standard control mode which will be basic flights. This is maneuvering at lower speeds with shields and weapons available.
Quantum Control Mode
The second mode will be QMC or QM for Quantum mode, which will allow for faster speeds and entering Quantum travel. However, in this mode Shields and weaponry will not be available. Quantum mode will allow you to travel at the faster speeds that you’re currently used to.
It will allow you to travel around 14,000 meters per second, of course depending on your ship. If your ship can handle that, this way normal travel times and flying around speeds shouldn’t be affected too much such as leaving atmosphere or something of that. nature
Quantum Boost Mode
Quantum mode is also getting a Quantum boost mode as well, which is like a mini Quantum travel mode. With this mode, players can use to quickly travel between points that are closer instead of having to spool up the Quantum Drive and calculate a jump for a much near location. It should be really useful and quick for getting around asteroid belts and things in orbit of a planet. This will be actually a great help when travelling around a planet or a moon which is normally too far for normal travel.
and just make basic Mission running a lot simpler and easier to navigate now a big part of having these new master modes is going to be a better defining ship roles between light Fighters medium Fighters heavy Fighters and interceptors an example was even given of how interceptors are going to be designed to switch between modes more efficiently.
so they could catch targets where other ships might have longer spool up or charge up times when swapping into say SCM basically having these two modes gives the developers a lot more tools on how they want to balance ships against each other and just Define their roles more specifically.
Overall, the system sounds really good to me they’ve been using it internally for squadron 42 and it plays well according to the devs.
and there isn’t an ETA on when this new system will make its way into the persistent universe as it basically has to launch for for all the ships at once which is a pretty massive undertaking now on one hand it feels absolutely crazy that it’s taken 10 years to figure out what makes good space combat in Star Citizen but on the other hand star citizens combat and flight model has already pushed above and beyond anything else in the space combat or even adjacent genres this really does seem like the final push to really cement its combat formula and set it up for the final fine tuning of what space combat and Star Citizen will be
There is also a very brief mention from Yogi about larger ship combat style meta wanting to focus more on World War II Type tactics like shot prediction.
and stuff which sounded cool to me but it’s also really hard to discern exactly what that means at this stage large-scale ship combat meta is still a huge question mark for many since there isn’t really a good way to experience it on a regular basis in the the game.
The fifth presentation was about the loreville redesign this was basically an art showcase loreville was the first major city in Star Citizen so it’s getting an overhaul to update its design standards.
The redesign looks absolutely brilliant and is probably going to be much more impressive when coming in to land there. Not much was shown about the internal redesign of the new Lorville city but the train system is getting some work.
Ship Systems Progress
The sixth presentation was about Resource Management both for ships and buildings. This means the systems that make facilities and ships run; how they work and how they maintain them, reroute them or even disable them.
Specifically it includes power energy resources, life support, item maintenance, relay handling, access control and gravity. The demonstration of operating the life support system to vent atmosphere were extremely cool. It can be used to put out a fire or even suffocate somebody in their room.
Pulling circuit breakers in power relays will start to disable Shields or other parts of ship’s systems. In this case, knowledgeable Engineers can really do a lot to help or hurt a ship.
Systems like life support will use consumables that need to be replaced to filter air and such. So, larger ships are going to have a lot of operating costs and bigger maintenance tasks to do just to maintain their flight capabilities.
Gravity Generators of the ships
Disabling gravity generators looks super cool and something that people have been wanting to see for a while. This system also have a low gravity setting. So in theory, you could maybe use less power for your gravity generator and if your crew doesn’t mind operating in Low Gravity mode you can basically just kind of like float around a bit more now in larger ships.
The crew will actually have to do stuff to keep ships operating at full efficiency having burned out fuses will see less power hitting certain systems and thus those systems will only be able to function at reduced capacity until they can be supplied with additional power.
now the first iteration of this that players will get to experience will include interactable and accessible items on ships, relay gameplay, changing fuses on relays, resource balancing, lots of new UI updates to assign specific roles to engineer duties on a ship and an external engineering screen.
The first ships being upgraded with the systems for resource management will be the Hammerhead the MSR and the whole a this all seems super cool and it’s one of the main design and even balanced features of large ship functionality there’ll be an actual real cost to operating massive ships and needing a crew to see it perform at full capacity will make a lot more sense.
The seventh presentation was showing off the latest ship stuff that they’re working on the New Concept ship went up for sale and it was the Crusader Industries Spirit.
Everyone seems to like the look of the Crusader ships and this one is designed to compete in the Cutlass Market. This is one of the most popular ship sizes in the game as it is perfect for flying around with a few friends. It’s got three variants from bomber to VIP transport.
It seems cool and I don’t think anyone was disappointed with the overall concept.
Crusader Spirit is a new series of concept ships. The ships will be having 2 crews on the boards. The ships will be able to transport large volume of cargo as well as small vehicles.
The ship is said to have high speed and mobility. It has a few variants with different specializations. The 2 seats are for pilot and co-pilot.
The 3 different variants of the Spirit Series are:
- A1 Spirit – A Bomber type of ship
- C1 Spirit – A Cargo ship
- E1 Spirit – A transport ship with 6 passenger seats
New Ground Vehicles
There was a few new gray cat ground Vehicles announced with the new STV being drivable now which looks nice and there’s also going to be an update to the PTV as well. These new vehicles were fine and seem to be rounding out the ground vehicle offerings just from different manufacturers.
We also got a nice deep look at the Drake Corsair. And to be honest it looks fantastic. The pilot and copilot seats look just simply incredible. The front mounted guns look devastating and it has an elevator that goes up to the roof of the ship which I now want on basically every other ship because it’s awesome very cool showing.
and I can’t wait to fly this one in game now the community also gets to vote on which company will be manufacturing a new mining ship in the pick a ship challenge over on the RSI website.
New Mining Ship
This will be a larger multi-crew mining ship which is smaller than the massive Orion but larger than the mole. Everyone, of course, wants Drake to make the ship but that wasn’t an option. Argo RSI and misk are the three manufacturers that you can choose from.
RSI seems to be winning the poll so far and I kind of like that the Orion which is designed by RSI looks extremely cool and I wouldn’t mind seeing a smaller vessel of a similar visual style now. CIG just has to actually figure out what multi-crew mining is supposed to be exactly now after a bunch of these pre-recorded pre-edited presentations were finished.
CitizenCon: Chris Roberts’ talk for future updates
Chris Roberts the man responsible for all of this craziness and Richard Tire Squadron 42’s game director came out to basically show off and talk about Star Citizen in a largely unscripted manner.
A huge amount of really cool info came from this segment. Although, having it at the tail end of a long presentation and listening to two developers chat in circles for two hours admittedly had me nodding off at times. You will find the most important details about the the features, updates and upcoming mechanics from below.
New EVA Mechanics
The new Eva system that they showcased basically when you go outside your ship into space right now you kind of jet around in a clunky unrealistic manner. The new Eva system looks incredibly well thought out with a head first movement system where your hands will naturally pull you along surfaces and sustain momentum with pushing animations.
Although still in early blocky phases, It still looks pretty good. Nonetheless, the new mechanics was described as even having some really cool handle grabbing. That would occur when you’re near an access point that has things to hang on to.
Seeing the demo just made me really want to have Eva combat and shipboarding even more they also discussed how not all suits are going to be designed with Eva thrusters so if you end up in space without thrusters and you have say a tractor beam tool you could pull yourself towards objects or push off of things to get around if you had to really really cool stuff.
Player movement updates
The new ladder and ledge grabbing system were also demoed and it looks extremely robust. The new movements system will allow you to climb any wall or surface by pressing probably space bar. The system looks like the movement and climb mechanics of GTA games.
Jumping onto and off of ladders at any point, looking around while climbing a ladder and ledge grabbing mechanics looked very good. The system is not earth-shattering compared to something like Assassin’s Creed but still extremely solid and a welcome addition to their game which is going to have just frankly tons of traversal. This will be very useful when your ship is bugged on the air when landing.
Personal Radar and other UI updates
The personal radar and UI was demoed as well. While this new feature might not seem as impressive to an outsider to anyone who spent considerable time playing Star Citizen with its current user interface. Well what was shown here looks like absolute Mana from Heaven the inner thought system for interacting with the world is getting simplified greatly without losing its functionality quality.
In fact it’s kind of gaining functionality while also becoming just way more intuitive.
Simply hitting F on stuff now does the thing that you would expect it to do now. And if there’s an additional option you can actually access this as well this is such a massive quality of life improvement over what the current system is.
I cannot wait for this to get into the game. The personal radar system was also shown I believe this is going to be tied to your suit or helmet so depending on what you’re wearing will determine whether or not you have a radar it’ll have several different like quick pings and charged up ping abilities and this will be able to Ping objects in your environments with quick scans.
It can also be used to spot enemies the nuances of how the system works are still a little bit fuzzy using the system can make you a Target because I guess you’re giving off emissions so there’s cons to using the personal radar.
You’re not just going to be scanning everybody else apparently. If you scan them, they’ll also so have your location but again I think there’s some nuances to how that works.
Overall it looks good and I’m excited to see how it gets iterated upon. It’ll be infinitely useful for both combat and just exploration in general now the star map rework was mentioned quite a bit as it’s tied into many of the features that were demoed. Unfortunately there was just no images shown apparently they are hard at work with a cool new system that integrates with most of your ship’s nav system better.
It all sounds great and unfortunately it’s still one of the most needed upgrades to the Star Citizen basic experience. And it seems like it’s still a ways off if they aren’t even showing early prototype stuff yet.
Pretty much all games out there have to help you navigate your environment. Well, Star Citizen is getting one and it looks cool they showed what it looks like in the CitizenCon. Rendering out an Idris and for places that are known such as City.
The system will have maps that are pre-discovered so that you can plan your routes and navigate to shops and areas that you need to get to. New areas, however, will be mapped as you explore them and you can even find and download maps for those locations. The system looks good and of course it’ll be an essential tool for FPS gameplay.
the AI system was also demonstrated with testimonials from Chris and Richard saying that they’re really good. Again FPS AI is a super touchy subject for me and I’ll believe the AI Tech when I experience it for myself. The demo was cool and the way the AI searched the environments looked very believable and thorough.
It showed the various AI combat profiles as well of defensive, pusher and flanker. All working together to keep players on their toes. It seems like they’ll definitely be a challenge for stealth-minded players. It’s hard to say how effective they’ll be against top tier combat oriented players though. Again, I don’t think players will be able to properly experience the quality of AI until server meshing is properly in the game. But this does look pretty promising. Sadly, no alien creature AI was shown. I think everyone certainly wants to see those Pyro crabs or the Microtech Yeti…
Mobiglass is yet another very important part of the Star Citizen. The new Moby glass UI was briefly shown. it was from Squadron 42, so some of the tabs that you might see from the persistent Universe weren’t all there. It does look better in general but not a massive change from what you’re currently used to.
I think a lot of the upgrades are also going to be under the hood like using the new building block Tech to make it versus the old Tech.
The main takeaway here funny enough was actually not addressed during the show but was pointed out on Reddit and that was the little button that says “Remote Retrieval” under the Gladius spaceship.
A developer confirmed in a live stream chat that the button is basically like the car retrieval in Cyberpunk. So you press it and the ship comes to you.
Obviously that’s a massive feature and it’s somewhat comical that they didn’t address it on stream since it’s such a huge quality of life Improvement. I would assume that just like everything else from this presentation something like this could be very far away from actually being implemented in the Pu even if ship retrieval is working in Squadron 42 right now.
It’s a smaller test environment with far fewer variables than the persistent Universe I can only imagine how many things will break in the Pu but being able to remotely call your ship to your location is without question going to be one of the best quality of life upgrades for the game.
I would even argue that a remote piloting option might be needed for the Pu if you’re in a tight spot and really really need to maneuver a ship in properly.
Player character stats
Probably the most controversial subject of the entire talk was the skills section. The developers announced that players in both Squadron 42 and the PU will get upgradable stats and skills.
Players will have four physical attribute stats that will level up or potentially level down depending on your in-game activities. These will be;
Strength could be leveled up by say lifting boxes a lot and its benefits could be adding to how much stuff you could carry in your backpack.
Agility would affect things like speed of weapon swapping or even aiming down sight speed.
Endurance would determine some of the boosts to survival times and harsh climates lack of food and water and even your ability to sustain higher g-forces during space combat.
Fitness would control things like stamina and your ability to run and swim for longer periods of time. For example; a bounty hunter who spends more time running after bounties would likely have more stamina of benefits.
Now the second part of this was more labeled as techniques although you could call it skills. These would be things like takedowns where a novice player might start off with just kind of a crude sloppy takedown.
But after practicing a lot would get faster at it and also unlock new takedown abilities. There are plans to extend this to melee combat as well.
So players to focus on melee combat more may be able to engage in different moves than somebody who doesn’t fight with a knife very frequently.
Now personally, I think I’m actually against at least part of what they have planned here firstly the concept is not new. It’s certainly borrowing from a lot of old school MMOs and much more recently the Tarkov system of leveling up stats.
What I don’t like about it is that it’s gonna give new players another hurdle to climb time before they can start trading blows with veteran players who already have a massive knowledge advantage over them. it’s just going to be one more punch to the face for Star Citizen new players. they’re supposed to be making this game more inviting for new players not harder to get into.
ads speed, weapon swap times, carry capacity G-Force endurance
it may sound subtle but that means a lot when players are evenly matched against each other and a game with so much on the line much more so than a game like tarkov where if you screw up and die well you can get back in and it’s not the end of the world.
Star Citizen there’s going to be much more on the line I mean how often do you want your life and death to be the result of someone else’s invisible stats being slightly better than yours. I don’t know if Star Citizen is the right place for this type of system it also opens the game up for so much stat padding potential players are going to figure out little scripts that make their characters do the thing that they need to do for hours on end to max out their stats.
I think the devs are creating a lot of headaches and balance issues for themselves down the road it seems fine for squadron 42. For the persistent Universe it feels kind of off-brand and sort of against what Star Citizen has portrayed itself as.
Overall those are the main highlights of the presentation. We tried to give you the all major changes as well as small but important features. There new systems, mechanics, features and update will change the game and gameplay completely.
There’s other little things here and there like a new community Hub on the RSI website. It’s certainly worth checking out the individual videos on the Star Citizen YouTube channel if you want deeper dives into basically everything.
It was overall a pretty good CitizenCon. That’s why it is an important event for Star Citizen community. Nothing was mentioned about the state of the 3.18 update probably because they were expecting it to be in PTU testing by this point. So it was probably wise to just kind of gloss over that whole situation no whole C was shown which I thought was a little bit surprising as it appears to be mostly done according to the progress tracker.
The presentation gives us plenty to chew on while we wait for the delayed 3.18 patch. The game is getting foundational Tech soon and then some more foundational changes to the core elements of just how the game is going to play. Please let us know what you think about the CitizenCon of 2022 in the comment section. If you are new to the game, we highly recommend you to take a look at our Star Citizen Beginner Guide as well.