Cloud Imperium Games has released the newly playable Alpha 3.3 to the Persistent Test Universe (PTU). According to the press release, Alpha 3.3 marks the third of Cloud Imperium Games 2018 quarterly updates to the Star Citizen Alpha Persistent Universe.
Star Citizen is a massively multiplayer online experience that empowers players to build a life in the stars while engaging in first-person shooter and vehicle battles, exploring massive celestial bodies, and discovering adventure in an ever-expanding sandbox galaxy.
Alpha 3.3 launches several massive technical upgrades to the game including:
- Object Container Streaming, a processing tool that controls how much of the game’s massive universe must be loaded by player’s CPU. Object Container Streaming is an important behind-the-scenes technical milestone that enables the rapid creation of future content and locations, including the Planet Hurston and its main city, Lorville. Both locations were revealed at CitizenCon and will launch to backers shortly via incremental patches. Object Container Streaming also powers huge performance gains, with testers seeing an average 100% gain in frames per second (ie. up to 60 FPS from 30, 120 from 60, etc.)
- Co-developed with Faceware Technologies, ‘Face and Voice over IP’ allows players to connect their webcams and control their in-game character’s facial expressions with their own, creating a new level of immersion never before seen in video games. Face and Voice over IP are available to all players in the Star Citizen Persistent Universe.
On the content side, players can look forward to tangling with new FPS AI enemies, who now populate the vast regions of the ever-expanding Stanton System (which currently clocks in over thousands of playable square kilometers). Players can traverse the ‘verse to seek out missions, fight AI-controlled enemies across new moons, visit all-new truck stops and space stations, and dogfight with new and improved AI controlled ships. Finally, the update also added new ‘Scramble Race’ missions that pit players against each other in high-octane races across Star Citizen’s massive moons.
Chris Roberts, CEO and Project Director, Cloud Imperium Games, said:
“I’m so proud of the work the team has done to deliver Object Container Streaming and Face over IP to all our backers. They are both massive technical milestones and major pieces of backbone tech for Star Citizen and Squadron 42 that we’ve been working on for well over a year. Object Container Streaming testing results have been great, and we’ve seen a marked increase in client average frame rates and memory use, with some players even seeing frame rates in the triple digits. In 3.3, Star Citizen players can fight against our all new enemy AI in both dogfighting and first person shooter battles, race each other across moons and planets and test out all our new ships. I also can’t wait to get our new planet, Hurston, and it’s major city, Lorville, out to everyone. That’s coming soon!”
Alpha 3.3 also adds 10 new and reworked vehicles, several weapons and armor sets, and more collectible and functional items expanding Star Citizen’s playable content more than 80 flyable ships and 300+ character items.
We’ll be sure to update this story with the full CitizenCon 2018 keynote as soon as it’s available on YouTube!