Relayhttps://relay.sc/feed/transcripts/atom2017-02-21T11:58:34+00:00https://relay.sc/transcript/happy-hour-february-17th-2017-summaryHappy Hour: February 17th, 2017 Summary2017-02-17T20:01:00+00:002017-02-18T00:08:01+00:00CanadianSyruphttps://relay.sc/contributor/CanadianSyrup TL;DR (Too Long; Didn't Read)
Today's guests were Senior Writer, Will Wiessbaum, QA Tester, Michael Falkland, and Streamer Clifford aka MikuThe Xi'An apparently have different tastes when it comes to food, some of it would be considered not edible to humans, but delicious to Xi'An. Also the Xi'An favour texture more so than flavour.Also Will couldn't go into detail, but they seem to be planning some gameplay around how the Xi'An hold things in comparison to humansArtemis was referenced in the show, asking if it'll ever be findable. Artemis was a ship that was piloted by an AI which held a crew in deep sleep. They lost contact with the ship and it's been missing ever since, if you can find it, that's a question you might have to answer yourself.The next concept sale is the Hurricane which goes on sale next Friday. Price is unknown.If Imperator Kastigan and Messer were pitted against each other in a game of BopIT, Messer would win says Will.The Squadron 42 Script is hovering around 1200 pages and is still being tweaked.
The show is live! Tyler is on vacation so it's just Jared hosting today. Special guest today is Writer, Will Weissbaum. Also joining the stream is QA tester, Michael Falkland from Austin. Today's guest streamer is Clifford Aka Miku!
Clifford streams Star Citizen as well as other games. He broadcasts on the new streaming site, Beam which has gained popularity quickly.
Today they're playing 2.6 live as they're expecting another PTU patch today and that might cause the stream to be interrupted if they tried 2.6.1 [What does a Senior Writer do?]
Everything Dave Haddock does, just a little worse. He works together with the other writers to create the narrative for Star Citizen. Anything from voice lines heard in game, to lore of the universe, to narrative props you will see in 2.6.1 in Echo 11.
[Is Xi'An food edible to humans?]
Some of it. Xi'An's have a drink that to humans is almost inedible, but Xi'An's love it.
[How do the Xi'An feel about spicy food?]
One thing they're looking at with the Xi'An is how they taste things differently. They might pay more attention to texture rather than flavour.
[Are the weapons and everyday items that they use in terms of grip is similar to humans or different?]
That's something they can't talk about as they're working on some gameplay designs that involve stuff along those lines, but there's stuff in the work.
[Who are the popstars of Star Citizen? The famous people]
Starwatch is one of their ongoing series which goes into the popstars of the universe and famous singers, bands, etc.
In 2.6.1 you'll see some artwork involving band posters in echo 11 to see as an example.
[Operation pitchfork, are there any special writings involving it in the universe?]
It's been a unique experience watching it grow into the community it is now. How it will affect the game is still something to be determined, but in some form it will be reflected in the universe.
[Can you describe your level of involvement on mission design?]
For 3.0 they've been working pretty closely with Todd Papy, Luke Presley on pitching settings and idea for the designers to work on. They like to be involved on not only writing the ideas for the missions, but how to use the mechanics in a unique way as well.
[Artemis, will it ever be findable?]
Right now it's lost in space, will it be findable is unknown. This is one of the reasons why AI has a main control isn't as popular due to the Artemis accident in which an AI pilot with a crew in deep sleep was flown out into space and contact was lost with it.
[The Galaxy is huge, but how is the culture broken down in it? As in oh this person is from Stanton, etc.]
There's definitely stuff like that going on. People aren't in the dark about what's going on around the universe, but it isn't instant as drones have to be sent through Jump Points to relay information. The initial first pass won't be as complex as having someone speak a different dialect as someone, but having groups like miners, civilians, etc and populate the universe and then later on they'll add more flair that defines them based off where they are from.
[Will players be able to build a name for themselves in the lore of the game?]
They're still exploring how much a player can affect the universe. They'll have it where people will get to know you by your reputation, but having it go on a larger scale of people knowing you by name where you haven't met them yet starts to get pretty complicated.
[Next concept sale?]
Hurricane will be on sale a week from today. Price is not known yet.
[Will there be any lore about Frost Lines?]
It was mentioned in the Jump Point that comes out today.
[Will players news make it into the game? Such as news vans broadcasting?]
It's too early for that, but it's something they'd like to do down the road, but that's far down the line.
On the newsletter, a brand new image of the Banu Merchantman [What is the lore behind the 9 tails and can we join them?]
He's not sure how much to talk about it because they want players to find out more about groups in game, but you will be able to do jobs for them in the PU.
[Can you give an example of Cathcart dialect?]
That is a tough question, Will isn't confident in his ability to talk in Cathcart.
Working with the linguist is a lot of fun because he always asks questions that they may not have had answers to previous or thought of and have to come up with something.
[Why do all the bad guys sound English?]
It's just what they have available at the moment, it's more of a logistics thing and that they'll have more soon.
[What's the deal with so many Maloy family members?]
He's not sure the relevance of that name.
[Will there be a big universe secret?]
[Do you write about the behaviour of the flora on planets?]
They do! They figure out what plants should populate certain areas on planets or environments.
[Do Writers have the best job at CIG?]
Jared says his job is the best because being able to go to events and meet the backers is the best. Will was neglected from answering this question. RED ONE, RED ONE.
[How has Martial Arts evolved in SC]
That's more of a design question.
They've discovered multiple Maloys and Will and Jared will try to figure out the reasoning.
Also there's about 15 Chris's between the four studios [Are you going to be able to come across people in distress and figure out what to do?]
Yes you'll be faced with scenarios like that.
[Will we see robots in the universe]
There's currently repair bots. Perhaps some cargo bots
[Do you prefer writing for good guys or bad guys]
Will leans more towards writing for the good guys, although it does depend on what he's writing about.
[Is there going to be someone prevalent like Darth Vader that we'll fall in love with in the universe?]
They don't know because it's hard to predict exactly which characters people will gravitate towards because what one person likes may be different from another.
[How do you go about writing?]
They do long term planning and high level planning. They also see what's needed ingame in terms of mechanics or lore, etc and working from there. Jump Points and the short stories on the site help a lot with getting different ideas out there.
[Who would win in a fight? Imperator Kastigan or Messer?]
Messer because of his military experience. If it was a game of BopIT it would be Messer again.
[How many pages did the Squadron 42 script end up at?]
It's still growing actually. One thing they've been working on now is onscreen text needs for Squadron 42 which is another can of worms, but they were over 1200 pages at the last count.
They're also filling in the wildlines such as backstory for characters that aren't necessarily apart of lore, but stuff you'd encounter through other means such as stuff on a wall, in conversation, etc.
That's the end of the show, Clifford will be streaming after the show at https://beam.pro/Clifford_aka_Miku
Will Wiessbaum will be on Quantum questions on Monday so tune in then to see him there.
https://relay.sc/transcript/around-the-verseAround the Verse: Super Hornet & Multi-Region Servers2017-02-17T00:21:00+00:002017-02-17T04:16:47+00:00StormyWintershttps://relay.sc/contributor/StormyWinters TL;DR (Too Long; Didn't Read)
Chris is back from the European studiosMonthly Report came out last week.First ever Valentines Sale is on right now including a free fly event.2.6.1 will feature the launch of Spectrum.Studio Update
200 staff at Foundry 42 UKShield generator, storage console, and mining module images Damage states for the Dragonfly Map of the Stanton system Asteroid, nebula, satellite, and space station imagesShip Shape: Hornet to Super Hornet
The original Hornet paid homage to the Hornet from Wing Commander which was a light fighter you started out in.At first the Hornet was to be a light fighter, but then after designs came back with it being heavily armed and beafy, Chris Roberts like it so much that it became the standard medium fighter for the UEE.The first Hornet came out in 2806 and replaced the Aegis Avenger.The goal has always for a player to feel as if the ship and everything about is it real, down to the buttons on cockpit and Chris feels this is was a big draw for a lot of people to the project.With the help of CGbot studios, Jim Martin, Ryan Churches, and Dave Haddock they created the demo shown at GDC and Kickstarter.The first pass of the Hornet was in 2013 for the Hanger Module by Chris Smith.The next was in 2014 with updating it to PBR2016 involved a complete upgrade to the Hornet and variants to bring them to the current standardsThe new Super Hornet will be in patch 2.6.1.The old damage system was hand crafted and had states of 25, 50, 75, and 100. The new shader system dynamically applies the artists designs across any part of the ship as its destroyed, making it much easier to create damage models that look and feel realistic and varied.Behind the Scenes: Multi-Region Servers
Game and platform run on public cloud, as has almost always been the case Evaluated different public clouds to determine best option short term and long term Huge overhead with running your own servers, cloud allows for lower cost and much greater flexibility Cloud also allows you to have servers close to your players rather than centrally located Three main types of virtual machines (hub, core, and game) Current model allows for many hubs, many game servers, but singleton core services.Core services currently being revamped and redesigned to become stateless and easy to scale to allow them to cope with any load they get. Original build machine was a single computer which produced 1 build per day, now CIG uses an internal cloud as a build system that can scale based on need. Ahmed and his team worked on multi-region servers through part of December, January, and early February Happy that they have a feature done that can be seen and enjoyed by the player base directly One database for all servers in the world, means you carry your game over when switching regions Current servers in North Virginia (US), Frankfurt (Europe), and Sydney (Australia) Players will be sent to closest load balancer, then closest hub server, then will be marked with a region ID and assigned to a game server. This can then be changed if the player wants. They did the work in 2 months but the previous 18 months of work was crucial to getting it done so quickly. Planning for failures and getting the network back up quickly All networks are laid out and they are ready to expand to all 14 or 15 regions from the current 3. Looking towards the long term and possibly having as many as 10,000 VMs reporting at the same time. Planning for that scale. Automation systems are done and they can scale with high reliability.
Chris Roberts (CEO, Director of Star Citizen and Squadron 42), Sandi Gardiner (VP of Marketing).
Sandi Gardiner (SG): Hello and welcome to Around the Verse, our weekly in depth look at the development of Star Citizen, I’m Sandi Gardiner and joining us back in the studio today is Game Director, Chris Roberts. Did you have a productive time overseas?
Chris Roberts (CR): Yes I did, but I’m glad to be back and the weather is a little nicer here, but it was a great trip. I spent some time with both the U.K. and Frankfurt teams and pushed ahead on some of the new systems coming online as we continue towards the release of Alpha 3.0 and Squadron 42. These systems are going to go a long way to support Star Citizens vast map size and huge array of player options. We’ll be showing off a few highlights when we check in with the studios during the up and coming weekly ATV updates in the next few months.
SG: Now you did mention the best part from last week's newsletter that you got to judge a bakeoff.
CR: Yeah [Laughs]. It was actually quite good. I had a big sugar rush, but it was the very first Foundry 42 cake bakeoff. The entries we got were spectacular, I’m not sure I got that much work done later in the afternoon, but well done to everyone there. I didn’t know we had that much baking talent in our U.K. office.
SG: There you go. The January monthly report was posted to the website last Friday and has a ton of information about all the progress that was made on Star Citizen and Squadron 42 heading into the release of Alpha 2.6.1 patch.
CR: Yup and thanks to all the Evocati, subscribers, and backers who have been testing the new Mega Map and multi-regional servers. The patch is expected to go live in the next few days so watch out for that.
SG: With the new patch out we wanted to give everyone an opportunity to get some new ships as well so we’re having our first ever Valentine's Day Sale right now.
CR: So on top of that we’re having a Valentine's freefly event through Sunday where you can check out one of our multi-crew ships, the Constellation which is sort of the grand daddy of the multi-crew ships in the game. So make sure to tell your love ones and visit the site for more details.
SG: Along with 2.6.1 we’re also launching our new chat and forum service Spectrum to the main site for everyone.
CR: Yeah this new service is bringing some impressive communication features which should make it even easier for hackers and devs alike to share ideas and interact. I’m really excited by Spectrum.
SG: Now it’s time for the weekly studio update so let's check in with the U.K. office to find out the latest developments from the Foundry 42 team.
Phil Meller (Lead Designer), Mici Oliver (QA Tester).
Phil Meller (PM): Hello and welcome back to Foundry 42 in the UK for our studio update. I am lead designer Phil Meller…
Mici Oliver (MO): and I’m QA tester Mici Oliver.
PM: Our team here in Wilmslow continues to grow and we now have over 200 staff here and while the team comprises nearly every aspect that goes into making Star Citizen and Squadron 42, here are some of the highlights of what the team has been working on lately.
MO: Our props team have a few components and ship parts to show us including a shield generator, a storage console, and a mining module.
[Shows off a Yorm medium-sized shield generator, looking finished or close to it; a storage console in whitebox; and a mining module rather fall along in the process.]
PM: So, our VFX team have been having fun blowing up ships again. Some people get all the fun.
[Shows off Dragonfly damage states.]
PM: And another example of the amount of detail that goes into our level environments is this in-fiction magazine cover from our UI team.
[Shows off Hitbox magazine cover featuring Star Marine.]
MO: As the game expands, and becomes more complicated, our design team uses some awesome internal tools such as this map of the Stanton system. We thought you might like it, so let’s take a look.
[Shows off Stanton system focusing in initially on Microtech before zooming out to see the entire system.]
PM: The artists are always adding detail and character to all areas such as asteroids, nebulas, modular satellites, and stations.
[Shows off intricately created asteroid, nebula, a variety of large satellites, and an artist creating a modular space station.]
MO: So there’s a look at some of the things that we’ve been working on.
PM: And now, back over to your hosts
Back to Studio
Chris Roberts (CEO, Director of Star Citizen and Squadron 42), Sandi Gardiner (VP of Marketing).
CR: Thanks for the update Phil and Mici! Fun to see that map sneak peek in there and some of the progress happening as we expand out the Stanton system for 3.0. There’s going to be so many things, and so many little areas, and so much content. It’s going to be pretty cool.
SG: And that magazine cover was a great example of the lengths our artists and narrative team go to, to expand out the immersiveness of the game.
CR: Yeah, especially with the new camera modes allowing players to zoom in on the environment and take in all of the little details. I’m always amazed by all of the great shots that I see online that people post of their play sessions.
SG: Coming up now, we have another edition of our ongoing series of Ship Shape.
CR: Yes, this week we’re going to take a comprehensive look at one of the ships that started it all - Anvil Aerospace’s Super Hornet. And, for 2.6.1, we have a new version of it which partly we’ll show in this little piece.
Ship Shape: Hornet to Super Hornet
Chris Roberts (CEO, Director of Star Citizen and Squadron 42), Chris Smith (Lead Vehicle Artist), Mark Abent (Gameplay Programmer), Ben Lesnick (Director of Community Engagement and Content Strategy), Kirk Tome (Lead Technical Designer), Dave Haddock (Lead Writer), Patrick Salerno (Associate Technical Artist).
Ben Lesnick (BL): If there was a single signature Star Citizen ship it would have to be the Anvil Hornet. The Hornets name sake was the F-36 Hornet from the original Wing Commander.
CR: For me when I started to do Star Citizen, obviously all my past games loom large and one of the inspirations for Star Citizen and Squadron 42 was my Wing Commander series as well as Privateer and Freelancer and so I felt like, “Well let's start with an iconic fighter”, and one of the most iconic fighters in Wing Commander which was the light fighter that you started in. The naming of the Hornet and quite a few other Wing Commander ships were always based on historical precedent because I took a lot from World War 2 or present day aerospace and military facts and so the Hornet was a light fighter in Wing Commander and so when I started on the Star Citizen I was like, “okay we need a ship, I need a ship to build, but I can fly around and I can sort of test out all the different things in terms of the flight model and how the look of it it’s going to be and how tactile, how visceral it’s going to feel.” So I thought, “Well let's come up with a fighter craft and call it the Hornet” as a nod to what I did in Wing Commander and a nod to historical ships whether it’s the F-18 Hornet today or back in World War 2 Days.
So that was essentially the inspiration. Originally I had given a brief to Rob McKinnon who is a Concept Artist that designed the Hornet and has worked on a whole bunch of stuff in Star Citizen. You see a lot of his designs ultimately in the game and I told them, “Well it should be a light fighter” and he would come back with these really cool designs, but he sort of gunned it up. He put this big ball turret on the top, and guns on the front with a cannon turret and it was like, super heavily armed, it really wasn’t a light fighter, but I liked the design so much that I was like, “Okay you know what, it doesn’t need to be a light fighter, this could be a medium or heavy fighter and we’ll call it the Hornet and it’ll be the base standard fighter for the UEE navy” which was the fiction that me and Dave Haddock who’d come up for the universe who you would fight on the side of in Squadron 42.
Dave Haddock (DH): The idea was that it was originally released in 2806. It was basically a replacement frontline kind of carrier dogfighter. The idea was the Avenger used to be their premiere dogfighter and then the Hornet came out and blew them out of the water and became the ubiquitous of the UEE navy.
CR: Once I had the design, I handed over to design with that, Ryan Churches design of the Bengal Carrier and also of the Vanduul Scythe which was done by Jim Martin. They were all handed CGbot when I was doing my early tech demo and prototype of what would eventually be carrying what I showed and the little movie we put together that hannes put this cinematic, five minute cinematic together and we headed to CGbot because I didn’t really have a team, it was a sort of loose affiliation of people helping me put this demo together and Sergio Rossi who used to work for me at Digital Anvil as an Art Director and Origins Art Director had a art company called CGbot which is mostly based in Monterrey, Mexico and had some people in Austin, Texas and he’s like. “Oh I’ve got some excess capacity and I’d love to help you out” and so we negotiated a very nice rate that he gave me because obviously this was very speculative and I said, “Well okay here’s the things i Need to build” and I gave him the Vanduul Scythe, I gave him the Hornet, I gave him the Bengal Carrier and they also did characters so they did the pilot character that you saw in the opening cinematic that you would have also seen in the cockpit of the Hornet and they also modelled an early version of the Vanduul.
They built those and then once I got those assets I, myself put them into the engine and was extending the engine to handle assets of that detail and fidelity with the articulation and animation that I wanted to see in the game because for me this was about proof of concept and visualising the feel, the tactical sense that I wanted the world of Star Citizen and the game itself to have and I think it’s one of the strengths we have is that our ships feel very real, they feel like you walk around them and you feel like you get into the seat and all the switches and all the bits work and they feel proper. It’s not just a cockpit that’s put in front of you, it’s not just an exterior view of your ship that the insides aren’t really figured out and so the Hornet was really the first one that did that and sort of showed what that could feel like and I think that was one of the big reasons why people responded to it.
Chris Smith (CS): The time first when I got the Hornet in my lap was when we decided to do like the first visual upgrade pass on it. It was already about two years at that time and then so the decision was made, we had to upgrade it a little bit. What I mainly did was take the landing gear components and stuff like that and uprezzed those. I didn’t do much on the mainship at that point, like the main hull, the wings, and all those things. The main features weren’t upgraded at that point, maybe the materials and the attachments and stuff like that.
Mark Abent (MA): Back then we didn’t have a lot of the technology that we have now. We just had some asset that an artist made and we just somehow had to make it work. So we had Chris Smith’s beautiful Hornet and then we had our hacked up versions over here. So we take his stuff, put it in, get it working how it want it to because we were still prototyping stuff so any one of us would be in that CGA mashing stuff together and to get what we needed it to be so we could go, “Alright Chris Smith, this is how we want it, take the beautiful Hornet and rearrange the hierarchy to how this should be”. So one day we come in and we have guns attached and then the next day we change the whole hierarchy and it would stop working. Then the following day we’ve got the parts breaking off and then we would have to redo parts of the item port system so we could get the hierarchy chain just there.
So then maybe next week we get the damage working and the hierarchy working so you could blow parts off, but now you can’t shoot. So it was kind of like that iterative process and then once… it took about a month to get everything there, it was a little bit buggy, but it was like, “Hey this is working, this is pretty cool”.
CR: Obviously after we had shown it at the 2012 sort demo, prototype, the Hangar Module was the first time that people actually were up close, get to see it. Now we worked pretty hard to get all the base ships like the Aurora, 300i and obviously the Hornet into the Hangar Module which we debuted at Gamescom back at 2013 which was a pretty cool moment and then not long after that we debuted a commercial for the Hornet which Hannes had put together which was still one our cooler commercials and it’s… A Hornet pilot being chased by various ships, an Aurora, an 300i, and then he comes back home and he revealed that he was bringing ice cream back for his Significant other.
It was really fun and then we sort of had this idea and I think this was one of the very early cases of coming up with idea of variants where we would have specialty versions of the ships. So there was a Tracker, or a Ghost and the Ghost was a stealth version and the Tracker was the AWACS version. Then the Super Hornet, that was the version of the F-18 Super Hornet that you have today where it’s a two seater, you’ve got a rico in the back. Maybe that person controls the gimballed turret or could control missile targeting and that’s certainly is going to become a much cooler role as Item system 2.0 comes out on the newer stuff, but that was the next update of the Hornet and Chris Smith sort of had taken the base Hornet and was working in these new variants that we had done designs and sketches on. CGbot helped out a little bit to add parts of it like the dome on the Tracker and stuff like that. So we updated it for 2013 and the Hanger Module and subsequent to that we started to roll out PBR: Physically Based Rendering which is a whole different, which is what the engine uses now and has been for a couple years, but it’s a way that the materials look much better, much more realistic, reaction to light. So metal really reacts like metal, Wood reacts like wood, concrete reacts like concrete.
So Chris had then took the Hornet and did a pass to bring up the materials to the PBR level and it stayed at that point until recently when he took a pass to take all our Hornets starting with the F7-C and then the Tracker and the Ghost and now with 2.6.1 it’ll be the Super Hornet to our new modeling with custom normals and poly mapping and UV2s and our special damage shader that we have.
CS: After that first upgrade pass it should pretty much remain unchanged aside from the PBR upgrade when we got that online and then it was decided that we do like another version of the ship, like the new 2018 BMW, it was supposed to be the next generation ship which was the F7-A and lucky for me I was tasked with doing that and that was great, it was fun since I had been involved with the Hornet for so long it made sense. I knew a lot about the ship already, I was very familiar with it.
So yeah I took on the F7-A and I sort of designed it up from the ground up and I kind of decided all of the things that bothered me on the original Hornet I sort of wanted to fix on this new one so that’s what I did.
So after the F7-A, the Mark Two was complete and I moved right onto upgrading the Mark One yet again, but this time it was a full upgrade. I wasn’t just upgrading pieces here and there, it was sort of rebuilding the whole ship with smart normals and the proper material PBR values and everything and so it could hold up with all the other ships that we’ve been coming out with for the last year and a half.
Since I had done the upgrade to the base Mark One Hornet, they all share parts so the change actually affects all the variants automatically which is great, it saves us time because it reuses the wing and the cockpit and everything like that. All that was needed was some material tweaks and colours and stuff like that.
After that, it was the Super Hornet and the Super Hornet was a little bit of a special case because A, it’s a two seater and B al ot of the parts aren’t directly shared with the original Hornet. There’s some tweaks and additions to the Super Hornet that the original base Hornet doesn’t have.
Kirk Tome (KT): We felt the Hornet line was due for an update and so we wanted to bring the Hornets up to the current standard of our latest batch of ships. We wanted to improve them both visually and technically. That did involve things like streaming the design shape. Taking a look at rebalancing the ships and changing their weapon loadout for example, their missile payload and also figuring out whether the current setup for the interior of the cockpit was going to be useful for our future multi-crew and item manipulation system that we’re applying in the near future.
We’re updating the damage tech on the ships so that they use our current UV2 damage so that they’ll blow up really nicely.
Patrick Salerno (PS): The old damage system used to have 25, 75, 50, 100 states. You would shoot the ship, after a certain amount of health, does a model swap, 100%, blows off. It was very cool damage, but it was very labour intense. We’d actually have to do a lot of hand modelling, each piece would end up looking very similar after awhile.
MA: If you picture my hand as the Hornet, a horribly drawn Hornet. Like each of these fingers would be parts and we should be able to shoot them and blow them off. In theory it sounds like an easy peasy thing, but we had it much more complicated than that. You could blow up this part of the thumb, followed by this part. So I could shoot here and it would take the whole thing away or shoot here and take the whole thing away.
PS: When the new shader came along, basically now we just blow off huge chunks. So wing, wing debris and when I’m taking a ship and I’m blowing it apart, I’m saying to myself, “which pieces detach from where and I’m setting up the proxies, I’m setting up the shields, I’m making sure things still animate and detach”. If there’s a turret or gun under the wing I have to make sure the helpers are attached to that piece of geo so it goes flying off with the debris and the destruction.
MA: It’s basically applying this streamlined texture around the whole ship and when you shoot it, you get these nice glow effects and decals that happen anywhere on the ship. With that we have this like underneath skelton carriage where if you shoot it so much, you’ll start seeing the bare bones skeleton of the ship.
PS: So now that I have pieces detaching, I have basic shader damage, I also need to go in and make sure that there are effects setup. Those basically represent a bunch of little cubes in that and they’re floating around and it kind of seems like C4 charges right , they explode and then you get the UV2 damage. So there’s burns and there’s wear on all the pieces that are exploded and melting and once those detach, it creates more randomized damage. So I can hand place squibs so even though say two wings detach on the same spot, there’s different charges in different spots and it looks more varied.
KT: The main impact is going to be visual. You will see that the lines are a lot sexier. You’ll see that when you die, explosions are more satisfying and it doesn’t feel as outdated as it used to.
CR: It’s really amazing to see all these back to back and there’s quite a difference in terms of detail and quality and the amazing thing was back in 2012 I thought, “Oh my god, this is amazing, I don’t think you could get something more detailed or cooler in a game back then and I sort of look at how we move along every year and how better we get and I’m always in awe at the ability and talent of our artists.
For us to build this world it feels that tactile with these ships that feel real, they don’t really feel like a fake or a digital ship, they feel like a real ship and that’s our goal is to lose yourself in the cockpit of one of these ships and you know, fly in space and live that fantasy.
Back to Studio
Chris Roberts (CEO, Director of Star Citizen and Squadron 42), Sandi Gardiner (VP of Marketing).
SG: That really takes me back to when we were putting together the original demo for the Kickstarter. Do you remember that?
CR: I do. Well, I don’t remember much sleep from it. Anyway, so much of Star Citizen’s development history is represented in the tech and artistry that can be found in the Super Hornet and the other Hornets. So, to see where we started and where we are now makes me really proud and even more excited where the project is going to go next.
SG: Speaking of what’s next, we’ve got a really interesting piece for this week’s deep dive featurette exploring some of the new server improvements that our engineers integrated into our network code for alpha 2.6.1.
CR: Yes, so have a look at how our new multi-regional server support and enhanced cloud architecture is allowing players to connect faster and easier no matter where they are in the world. This will be something we will be continuing to work on and roll out to other regions as it beds in and works well.
Behind the Scenes: Multi-Region Servers
Ahmed Shaker (DevOps Engineer), John Erskine (Studio Director), Mike Jones (IT Director).
John Erskine [JE]: Hey guys!
Ahmed Shaker [AS]: Hi John.
Mike Jones [MJ]: John.
JE: I’m here with Mike Jones and Ahmed. Today we’re going to talk about some of our server architecture and the cloud and some things that we’ve been working on from the operations and the Dev Ops side lately. Let’s start off first by talking about what we have today. Most people don’t know very much about what it takes to publish a game like Star Citizen. We’re in an alpha phase now and the game is available to anybody who is a backer. We have regular free fly events where even people who aren’t backers can check out the game. So, tell us a little bit about what is involved in actually running a game like Star Citizen today.
AS: Almost everything we use to serve the game or the platform to the players is run on public clouds and that has been almost always the case, as far as I know, and we have been trying different public clouds to see the perfect offering for what we need for the long term and also the short term. However, I believe IT under Mike Jones had been running our own internal clouds here as well. So, we still utilize the cloud technology whether it’s public or private on hardware owned by us.
MJ: The main thing Ahmed’s talking about is where do we put the servers and the server - or services - that we connect to when we play Star Citizen could be anywhere. It’s really just a computer on the internet.
So, we could host that here in our own servers - this is the way we used to do it in the old days. The problem with that model is that first you have to acquire a lot of servers and that’s a pretty big expense whereas with the cloud or hosted rental market we can only rent or buy what we need and then we can turn it off and stop paying for it if we’re not using it. With dedicated hardware we have a massive overhead in maintaining that equipment whereas if we’re using someone else’s, we don’t have to worry so much about that. If a fan goes out or a CPU or a power supply goes out in a virtual environment, these systems are designed to automatically roll over to the next available machine. So, this gives us a tremendous amount of flexibility at a much lower price point than if we had to acquire everything ourselves. One of the things that I think is really important to point out, and I hope that Ahmed can explain to you, is the additional flexibility we get in the network.
If we just hosted here, let’s say in Austin or at any of our studios, the players would be connecting to that one place. What we can do now by utilizing servers located throughout the world is that we could put servers anywhere we need them, wherever the players are, if that makes sense to do.
JE: Ahmed, do you want to tell us a little bit more about the services that actually comprise Star Citizen today.
AS: Absolutely. So, the game itself needs - any client that any player has needs another component. The DGS, the dedicated game server, we always call it DGS. However, you cannot have this connection between the player and the dedicated game server he wants to play with unless you have a lot of backend services taking care of a lot of business logic that the player needs. For example, the player needs to be able to declare his request for the game he wants to play. He wants to say that he wants to play with his friends, communicate with them, chat with them and these are the services that are being developed here in Austin by our backend services team - Jason Ely and Tom Sawyer.
Currently what we have, we have our layout - our VM mainly full in three main types. We have a hub server or a hub VM and a core VM and a game VM. The game VM is just a virtual machine that we acquire from our cloud provider, in our current case it’s EC2, and you would load it with DGS instances according to the amount of load that we decided on - how many instances would run on how many CPUs, how much memory, how much network, and they all get connected to the core services. The core box would have several services, most importantly we have GIM - the Generic Instance Manager - a lot of backers already are familiar with the name and know what it does, and we have the PCache, Persistence cache. Persistence cache sits before the Persistence database service that writes direct to the database, taking all of the traffic from all of the dedicated game servers and pushing it down to the database in more of a cubed organized manner rather than having all of the game servers hammering one single service.
The current model that we have, we can have as many hubs as we need, we can have as many game servers as we need, but we have only one singleton of every one of these services and that’s the current model. Because usually, due to my experience in startups you go out with proofing your concept, then having your MVP: Minimal Viable Product, make sure that’s what you need, and then you start moving from there.
So currently, the backend service team are working on revamping and redesigning all of these singletons into so many stateless, easy-to-scale, services that we can have whatever we want and cope with whatever load we get and that’s the main point that we are in the cloud. One of the main great things about being in the cloud is being able to scale whenever we want. Back in the days when you were trying to market the cloud, you always used to bring up examples from Black Friday. You have a shop that sells flour or sells toys, year-round you can be fine running on a single VM - on Black Friday you need 200. That’s when you go to the cloud, and we have the same concept because we need to be always able to provide resources and game servers to the players who play - no matter how many of them decided to play, no matter where they are.
JE: Do you want to tell us a little bit about how we’ve added functionality or added features over time and where that gets us today and I am particularly interested in understanding from your experience the level of complexity we have in Star Citizen today, already, compared to a lot of other games.
MJ: One way I like to describe that is a physical way that you can visualize. When we were developing the hangar module, of course we had fewer people, and everything we did as a company came together in one computer - a tall one but not a very big computer - and it sat under one guy’s desk and we got one build a day.
The needs of the publishing increased so rapidly that this one computer wasn’t going to be enough and when we took a look at this we realized, we would need a room full of computers to do this. So, this is what Ahmed talks about when we developed our own internal cloud. So, we’ve built a virtualization infrastructure where we can actually expand, much in the way the game server is run, we expand an internal build system that increases dynamically based on the needs.
JE: Tell me about what you’ve been working on lately. This is a major new feature that all of this infrastructure and architecture that we’ve talked about has gone through multiple generations and iterations and really set us up for something that you’ve been working on now with other engineers. Tell us about it.
AS: So, since December we started looking at - we released Star Marine and now we have a lot of players who want to play FPS and a lot of players have been asking us - where is the multiregion work? When we can we be able to play on servers closer to us? So, we all agreed this is the right moment. We have an FPS right now, so let’s have multi-regions. So, since December and including January and a little bit of February we have been working on the multi-regions servers to be able to have servers in as many regions as we want, without the player having to disconnect but he has to move from one region to another, because they all share a single database. So, the same player can play in the EU and then a few minutes later can switch and go back and play in the US and he’ll find the same information that he needs.
As any new feature that we come out with, as I was just explaining, we try to come out with a certain delivery between the PoC, a proof-of-concept, and an MVP, a minimum-viable product, and that’s what we have right now and I believe we have selection for the regions that we will start with and we have building or editing our automation tools, SaltStack, to be able to code with different regions, different naming, different availability zones which is a concept that happened inside AWS and how we can add resilience while we are adding availability at the same time so we always know if something went down over here or have a placement for it over there but also we are trying to get as close as we can to our player base. We have our current region in Virginia, North Virginia, US-East one and we will be adding Frankfurt and we will be adding Sydney. It’s been a lot of fun, every single minute that we spent on this project connecting these regions together, making sure that everything worked correctly. It was kind of different from any other changes that we did because we know that this will really enhance the way it’s experienced. We know that the players will feel that. There’s a lot of work that we get to do but we’re like, ‘We just did something really cool but the players won’t really get to notice it,’ but this one we really hope that you notice it, you like it and we can embrace it and expand it on it too.
JE: One thing I know about the multi-region work is that there’s really two levels to this experience from the players perspective of playing in the different region or being able to choose a region. One piece of it is where the game server is located. This is the DGS that you talked about, and the other piece which is invisible to the player is where the HUB server is located.
JE: So from my understanding is that as we roll out to these different regions that players will always connect to the HUB server that closest to them.
JE: Which gets them into our network at that point instead of going over the open internet and then from there they can play on a dedicated game server that’s either located in that same region or that DGS may be located in another region.
AS: So the way this feature is going to overlap utilizing the technology of using a new extension of DNS that would allow the DNS server to know a little bit more about the location of the requester, we would be able to use a service like Cal53 to send players to the closest load balancer to them and the load balancer it would take them to the most suitable HUB server that you have. The moment you get in this HUB, you will get marked with a region ID, that’s the NID you walked in with and the matchmaker will respect that choice. You came from region ID that means Europe, then you’re going to get sent to a game server in Europe. You want to go play with your friends, make your selection then go play in the US. So Hopefully this will be rolled out really soon and players will enjoy it and we’ll expand on it and listen to all the feedback and try to make it much better.
MJ: Ahmed makes it sound so simple.
JE: I know right? Makes perfect sense.
MJ: We’ve been working on this for some time and it has been a fun project, but there is a tremendous amount of network engineering and network security that goes into this and also performance tuning that has to be considered for this to work.
JE: When you said a minute ago, “Well we worked on this in December and January”, but it’s also the case that if it wasn’t for the 18 months that came before it that you couldn’t do this in two months.
AS: Absolutely, absolutely. That’s where experience kicks in and that’s how you learn the hard lessons from before. You have to play everything ahead, you have to make that you have sure areas where you can expand and then get surprised that you’re going to leave that current region you work in and if you want to talk a little bit about technical, AWS the largest organisational body we have is called VPC: Virtual Product Cloud. The Virtual Product Cloud cannot go across regions so you cannot have one single VPC which is a cloud and by the cloud meaning it follows one single network CIDR like, it’s a single internal network that you can divide in between, but you cannot only make a VPC have the same IP address subnet or the same networking between two different regions. So you have to make sure that you make your own tunnels and you have to make sure that your VPCs were aligned correctly so that they’re not going to collide, you will get to know whose coming from what, who needs to what and no other traffic will not get in the way and also be able to recover because definitely while you being in the cloud is such a great thing, it’s an amazing thing, but always design for failure, everything will fail.
You have neighbours, you have a lot of very complicated stack beneath you to know what’s going on. As Mike was explaining, the disks might go bad or anything could happen so we have been working on that so that even if we lost our tunnels we can recover in a few minutes from a lurch on it and make sure that we are delivering that traffic needed from the distant game servers to the core service that runs the matchmaking or database and all of that with the best achieved latency and the most attainable bandwidth that we can attain between these different regions.
I think we start to kind of like, was a big stretch, we’re going to Sydney, we’re going from Virginia to Sydney and we’re going to Frankfurt. Frankfurt is actually central in Europe when you look at it. We could have one in Ireland which makes it a little bit easier for us, but we said, “Okay, let's do it’. So we’re going Sydney, Frankfurt, then Virginia for the first rollout and all the networks are laid out and we are ready to expand, I believe there are 14 to 15, we are ready to expand in every single region of AWS when we feel we need to.
JE: Well that’s perfect for my last question which is to say, where are you going from here? What do you see on the roadmap after this? What does this set you up for and what do we expect to see in the future.
AS: Yeah I mean when it comes to all the regions I’m not sure If can state all of them? I think I can. They have Ohio, Oregon, California, Ireland, London, Sydney, Mumbai, Sao Paulo Brazil, I believe Tokyo Japan, Seoul Korea. So yeah, skies the limit and they keep adding more regions, I believe they’re going to have a new region in France and one more in China soon. So as you mention, the way it works because we are here to build this project, we always try to lay our foundation and the support that we get from you and Mike that we can take our time to build our own foundations and techs so we can capitalise on it in the future and be able roll quick features, that what we have been doing.
Right now going to any region is not going to be of any limit to us, and once we’ve rolled out more regions, this year is going to be a little busy for us because we have a lot of… As much as we were talking about how the backend services started with having a proof concept and moved then to MVP and these are going to get revamped, we have a lot of infrastructure elements that we need to look at. We have a lot of areas that we monitor certain aspects, we need to group some of them, we need to diverse some of them. We need to look more longevity solutions, we can scale it out because the way you look at it, we need to be ready to have 10,000 VM’s reporting at the same time without crippling us and that’s the reward that we get from having the DevOps department early on. I hope this answers the question.
MJ: Every year we say the same thing, but this one really feels we’re making some big headway. The automation systems are done now, we feel like we can scale with a very high reliability. We have far fewer panic nights where we’re staying up all night trying to solve problems. So definitely the work we’ve put in has paid great dividends and so now with expansion into multi regions, it just gives us more that we can do.
JE: Cool we’ll I’m really proud of the work that you and your teams have accomplished and I'm really happy that we have a chance to share this in more detail with our fans and I look forward to all the great things that are yet to come.
MJ: Thank you John.
AS: Good times.
JE: Thanks guys
Chris Roberts (CEO, Director of Star Citizen and Squadron 42), Sandi Gardiner (VP of Marketing).
CR: Really happy we got take a deeper look at the team. They are often the unsung heroes of the project because what they do is critical to making Star Citizen work, but it’s not sexy as building a spaceship or making environments or a character and there’s been a ton of effort put into implementing multi-regional servers and some of that backend matchmaking so it’s great we got to highlight some of that work.
SG: It is, well that brings us to the end of this episode of ATV. As always we’d like to thank our subscribers for contributing to all of our behind the scenes content.
CR: Yup, thank you guys, and I’d also like to express our continued thanks to all of our backers out there. You do so much to support Star Citizen’s development. We’re trying to do something unique with this project and all of you are a large part of that.
SG: Yes you are. We’d also like to invite you all to join us tomorrow at 12 Pacific for the latest Star Citizen Happy Hour stream to watch some live game and discussion.
CR: Yes, so this week, Senior Writer Wiesbaum will be stopping by to answer some questions. It should be a great way to kick off your weekend.
SG: And do you know what else might make their weekend even better?
https://relay.sc/transcript/citizens-of-the-stars-episode-3Citizens of the Stars: Episode 32017-02-13T18:00:00+00:002017-02-15T17:47:14+00:00StormyWintershttps://relay.sc/contributor/StormyWinters
Tyler Witkin (Community Manager).
Tyler Witkin(TW): Hey everyone and welcome to the third episode of Citizens of the Stars, where we take an opportunity to highlight one of my personal favourite aspects of the Star Citizen universe, all of you. Now choosing what to highlight on this new show can be quite difficult simply because of the sheer amount of community created content consistently flowing through our Community Hub. Now that’s a problem I don’t really mind having so keep it coming with that let’s jump over to Community Manager, Jared Huckaby for another installment of Citizen Spotlight.
Jared Huckaby (Community Manager).
Jared Huckaby(JH): Welcome everyone to another edition of Citizen Spotlight and with me today is master of the no bull shit tutorial himself, Mr Noobifier. Noob, how you doing man?
NOOBIFIER(N): I’m good, thanks.
JH: All right, so tell me is it NOOBIFIER, is it Mr. NOOBIFIER, is it ‘Jared already did this joke with STL last week’? What’s the deal here?
N: It’s just TheNOOBIFIER, that’s fine.
JH: All right, thanks Tim. So Tim, you’re the master of...thought I could do the joke. NOOBIFIER, I called you the master of the no bull shit tutorial. Tell the folks at home what that means.
N: So, I try to take everything, like the game is complex, so I try to take as much of it as possible… research it and formulated into a short as possible without cutting anything and putting it off to the side. So basically everything you need to know in as little time as possible cause your time is important to you.
JH: Right,well Star Citizen is a fairly complex project. Do you really think it can be summarized in only two minutes?
N: Well, that’s always my goal. I mean when I started this I started to watch other people’s videos and I noticed they were 20-30 minutes and I thought not to sound arrogant but I thought I could do better and that was my goal. That’s what I wanted to do so that’s kinda my mission statement and it became the no BS.
JH: Well I can tell you we’re all big fans of your videos here in the studio so we appreciate what you’re doing especially with, you know, your efforts in making Star Citizen in digestible two minute little bits.
JH: So folks at home you can check out all of NOOBIFIER’s videos, they’re on his YouTube channel and if I’m not wrong you’ve got over 160 videos on your channel, is that right?
N: Yeah, don’t tell my wife but yes.
JH: All right, we’ll talk the clock. All right NOOB, for thanks for taking the time to join us here on Citizen Spotlight and folks at home… we’ll see you next week.
Jake Ross (Producer), Tyler Witkin (Community Manager).
TW: Hey everyone, we are back with another installment of Quantum Questions where we put a Cloud Imperium Developer in the hot seat to answer as many questions as they can in just under two minutes. This week we have Producer Jake Ross vying for that top spot, let’s see how he does. All right Jake, are you ready for a round of Quantum Questions?
Jake Ross(JR): Yup, let’s do it.
TW: Do you have any strategy going into this today?
JR: I want to beat Ben and Jeremiah so I’m just going to blow through them, go as fast as possible.
TW: I like how you’re already talking fast, you’re like ready to go.
JR: Let’s do it.
TW: Two minutes on the clock starting now. What is your name and what do you do at CIG?
JR: My name is Jake Ross, I’m a Producer here in CIG, Austin.
TW: What does a Producer do?
JR: Lots of stuff but suffice to say communicate with people a lot.
TW: Fair enough, how does one become a Producer?
JR: For me by happenstance.
TW: Ok, what is your favourite department that you regularly work with?
JR: Pass, not going to pick between my favourite children.
TW: Fair enough.
JR: Not going to do that.
TW: Can you give us an update on the in-game economy?
JR: In-game economy, yes. So the pricing algorithm is nailed down, we’re pricing items as we speak. We also have the first twenty commodities defined, we have everything from diamonds to malt liquor, processed food, plutonium. Lots of stuff.
TW: Is it frustrating that your legacy will only ever be based on the style of your hair?
TW: What’s next on the Animation teams to do list?
JR: Let’s see, we just finished cockpit enters and exits at the combat speeds. We’re doing interaction... cockpit interactions now or the start up sequences. We’re also working on mission givers for the PU.
TW: Fantastic, now what’s the latest on Spectrum?
JR: Spectrum, we have the full release of Spectrum is incoming guys, it’s almost here. Right now we’re working on presence which is basically Spectrum when you’re playing the game and when you’re not playing the game, so it shows when you’re offline and when you’re not.
TW: Fantastic. What are you most looking forward to that’s being developed in Austin right now?
JR: Let’s see, the Kiosk that Rob Reininger designed. It’s with the UI team and the in-game code team now so we’re working on that, going to be super exciting.
TW: Awesome, what is your favourite ship?
JR: Used to be the Herald, now it’s a tie between the Dragonfly and another ship that hasn’t been announced yet. So, I’m sorry to keep you in the dark.
TW: And your most memorable moment at CIG Austin? With five seconds.
JR: Most memorable moment… I gotta say it was the procedural planet.
TW: We’re out of time. Great job Jake, we appreciate you taking the time from your busy schedule to stop by and answer some questions for us.
JR: You’re welcome, thank you very much.
TW: That makes 10 questions for Jake Ross which means he fell a bit short of his goal of dethroning Jeremiah or surpassing Ben. Make sure to tune in next week if Jeremiah will finally be taken down. Now if you have questions you want to contribute to Quantum Questions, you can head on over to the Subscriber area on the forums to do just that. See you next time.
Ben Lesnick (Director of Community Engagement and Content Strategy).
Ben Lesnick: Hey everybody, this is Ben Lesnick. Let’s check out the top five.
Number five, Lsobrado for his Good Morning Star Citizen video. A relaxing look at the sunrise at Yela. I mean one of the great things about Star Citizen is that the game is absolutely beautiful but, you know, a lot of games are beautiful. The great thing about the Star Citizen community is that they appreciate that the game is beautiful and they make these videos that just bring you into the world, it’s fantastic stuff. So, Good Morning Star Citizen.
Number four, Giand for his Star Citizen action pad. Let’s you use emotes and chat from your iOS device, he’s created a profile for action pad which is a tool that let’s you control PC things with your iPhone or iPad. So, he’s set it up so that you can control all the different shortcuts in Star Citizen from your phone, sort of like your own mobiGlas.
Number three, OldSchool for his web comic, The Citizens. The Citizens is absolutely hilarious, this is comics and gags and things based on bugs from the game and as anyone who has played Star Citizen or watched Bugsmashers, we’ve got bugs aplenty. So he has done some good work there.
Number two, Andre86 for his screenshots using the new camera controls. They say a picture is worth a thousand words so just check out these pictures, they are absolutely stunning. The ability of Star Citizen backers to capture the spirit of the game with their screenshots is wonderful.
And who is number one…you are number six. Our MVP is Whispers Thru the Jump Point for his Star Citizen universe news videos. What he does is take all the Star Citizen news from different sources like Around the Verse, Citizen of the Stars, the Comm-Link and he does his own news show in front of a green screen in the Star Citizen world. My absolute favourite is where he is composited himself so he is the pilot of a Starfarer, he just does a great job. He’s got such character and it’s a lot of fun, check it. Congratulations Whispers Thru the Jump Point, you’re this week's’ MVP.
Alexis Lesnick (Subscription Manager).
Alexis Lesnick(AL): Hello subscribers, Alexis here with the very first installment of Sub-Conscious, a new segment where we update you on the latest and greatest in subscriber news. If you aren’t a subscriber, well why the heck not, you can learn more about subscriptions at the link below. Last week we released our February subscriber flair, this month’s item is a painting called ‘Tears of Fire’ for your hangar which represents a key moment in UEE history. We hope you enjoy the artwork and stay tuned for your next reward.
Your ship of the month for February is the Hornet Wildfire, the Wildfire is one of the exclusive airshow variants that we made available for last year’s anniversary and it’s yours to fly free all month long. Finally you can look forward to the next edition of Jump Point hitting digital shelves this Friday. This issue features a look at the recent Star Marine release plus plenty of cool fiction including a look at the Star Marine community circa 2947. Have a happy Valentine’s Day and stay tuned for more updates and I’ll see you in the Den.
Tyler Witkin (Community Manager).
TW: That’s all for this week, thank you for tuning in. I want to give a quick shout out to TheNOOBIFIER for coming on and chatting with us in another installment of Citizen Spotlight and Jake Ross for taking the hot seat in Quantum Questions. Thanks again for all your support and we’ll see you in the ‘Verse.
https://relay.sc/transcript/happy-hour-february-10th-2017-summaryHappy Hour: February 10th, 2017 Summary2017-02-10T20:00:00+00:002017-02-10T21:44:34+00:00CanadianSyruphttps://relay.sc/contributor/CanadianSyrup TL;DR (Too Long; Didn't Read)
Today's guests on Happy Hour were Lead Writer, Dave Haddock, and Twitch Streamer, BadNewsBaronIt's possible there are alien races that haven't been discovered, but if they said there were, then they wouldn't be undiscovered. Also primitive races are protected by the UEE's fairchance act in that one cannot tamper with the progress of a less technologically progressed race.Mission givers will be diverse for 3.0 and beyond. Miles Eckhart won't be the only kind of mission giver out there, plus quest givers like Miles Eckhart may be "Good" or "Bad" depending on your reputation with them and what you're seeking so the "Good/Bad" guys won't be clearly defined always.Missions where there's different perspectives on a same mission, IE good/bad is still being discussed on how they would implement it for certain mission.The stereotype Xi'An's have about humans is that they're emotional and impulse. Xi'An's are the only non human race with defined stereotypes of the humans. The Banu love humans, but only because they love everyone that doesn't kill them.When it comes to getting benefits from an alien race for example, they don't want players to have to know an entire language just to get a benefit, but open doors to them for opportunities that a player may not have gotten if they didn't know the culture. They want to prevent players from getting left out in the cold because of time invested, but still make it interesting for those who do invest the time to learn the cultures.Creating large scale events ingame is something that will be looked at more in detail when it becomes relevant. They'd like to do big events, but also want to not waste dev time by creating an event that is a one time thing and then never used again, they want to be able to incorporate things in such a way that they can use them again, but be impactful when used a certain way.
The show is live! Today's Happy Hour guests are Bad News Baron and Lead Writer, Dave Haddock!
Bad News Baron is a fulyl time twitch streamer who started out with Star Citizen and ventured into becoming a Sci-fi variety streamer.
Today they'll be playing SC 2.6.1 Which is now available to more than just Evocati now [How do you go about making Lore for a system?]
First the first couple years it was piecemeal because the team was very small, and it was a matter of slowly chipping away at it for what people needed. It wasn't until the Starmap that they had to really solidify the rest of the systems. It was a daily sync up with multiple writers to figure out what made a system interesting and drum up ideas for others.
They try to pull as much real world science into the systems, but also adding little things that may bend what we believe is real, but isn't known yet.
[Will there be Alien races that have yet to be discovered?]
It's a weirdly loaded question because if the people know there's an undiscovered alien race out there, then how do you know it's there to be discovered? They have illusions to ancient civilisations on several planets, so maybe? It's one of those things you have to get in there and find out.
[Were there any characters you wrote for a specific actor?]
There were certain actors that fell into place really well, but none were specifically written for them. During filming He made adjustments, but other than that no.
[Do you storyboard first?]
With Squadron 42 you would do pretty intense synchronisation with the design team and had to make sure they locked down the design with Chris so that everyone is on the same page and that they don't jump into a script without having the scope down.
[Without giving spoilers, What is your favourite chapter of Squadron 42?]
It's tough because there's many sprawling moments that are sprinkled throughout the game. It's a good question, but he doesn't know.
[Who influences you when working with lore]
It's all over the map. He was always a StarWars guy, but he wrote a lot of fantasy too. The great thing with Star Citizen is being able to pull a lot of ideas from different genres and places you wouldn't normally expect to see influencing a sci-fi game.
[What is your involvement in 3.0?]
Collectively they are hitting on several things at the moment with the writing team, specifically the mission givers the ones who give you jobs. It's surprisingly broad task as there's a lot of space to fill because Crusader is big. There's also placement of props and setting up environments to invoke feelings from the player and giving a general feel of places and generally working with environmental teams on how to sell the look and feel of a place.
[The only style of mission giver we've seen so far is Miles, are these the only kind of missions we'll see?]
Definitely not, he was more of a test case. His backstory was that he runs a private security force and he straddles the line of legal and illegal. They've tried to make it so if you're legit, he'll give you legit, but if you want to wander into that shady territory he might offer you something.Chris's philosophy isn't about black and white, but rather shades of grey. There's going to be a lot of legit businesses that may do illegal things or illegal businesses with a legit front.There's a lot of sitting down with the directors of studio's to sit down and figure out what type of missions they want from escort, hauling, etc. Then from there which system do they want them to be in and then what purpose does that mission fulfil for the player and missionIf there's a lawful mission giver, is there a unlawful one to balance him out? Those are some of the questions they have to answer still.
[Do any of the missions that exist from miles or other characters that exist in the "Good" or "Bad" format depending on how you're told to approach it? As in the same mission, but from a different perspective?]
There's ongoing talk about that currently and how they want to implement stuff like that.
[Is Tess Banister an AI?]
No, she's a real human being stuck at a comm array.
[Because Tess is a small part of the SC universe and has gained a lot of popularity, will she become a bigger part in 3.0 and beyond?]
They like people have become attached to her, but that's something that's a bit more complicated since they only have a voice recording of her right now and would likely involve animating her at some point.
[Do you have a part in creating the environment for areas?]
To some extent, there's the general guidelines that they help define to give a planet a look and feel, but there's opportunities to really make something special in certain areas that they can relay to the Devs.
[Every Tuesday your team comes out with a Lorepost, do you have any idea of how they may be portrayed ingame?]
Hopefully they can do something like that for ingame events and recounting them, but a lot of it will probably boil down to technical aspects and how quick they could actually turn around and get that stuff out to the players.
The dream is to have it so if there's a major battle and people can see it on the T.V. later and go, "Hey I was there!"
[Will there be large scale events that progress the ingame story that is also influenced by the player actions?]
That's definitely something for much farther down the line, it's one thing they'd look into when that becomes more relevant, but they'd be interested in doing something like that.
There's also the issue that you don't want to waste content and have this big event, but never using anything from it ever again. It's very cool to have things like that which players can get involved with and make it feel like the world is dynamic and alive, but you have to find that balance.
[Will there be choices in Squadron 42 that will end up causing the death of a wingman?]
[Will there be things a player has to do in order to not offend a race or species?]
They don't know yet the depth of how far something like that would go, but Dave personally would want to have it to where knowledge of the culture may benefit you, but wouldn't be a determent to other players if they hadn't known it. They want to give players an incentive to go a bit further to gain a benefit, but not so much as they have to learn an entire language to be able to do anything special.
[Will there be answer to Earths myths, legends, etc in Star Citizen?]
[What are some stereotypes that our various alien races have about humans?]
The Xi'An's think humans are emotional and impulsive. The Banu love Humans, well actually they love everyone. The Vanduul... not sure yet. It's just the Xi'An's that they've made a stereotype about humans.
[Is there more than one human language or did we unify them?]
Realistically, there would be 1000's of languages in the UEE alone, but gameplay wise splitting it up would be very difficult to figure out logistically. The thought is that the UEE has a designated language.
[In games like Fallout or WoW, there's quite often lots of hidden jokes everywhere if you can find them, We saw the first one with the Big Benny's Stone Henge, but will there be more?]
Dave's a huge fan of them and wants to do them, but for him it's important that it doesn't come at the expense of the universe. If someone doesn't know the joke, does it take them out of the immersion or if you get it, it's funny and if you didn't, you wouldn't notice. They don't want to have too much of making fun of your universe because then it gets into parody and then it gets weird, it's a balance essentially.Tyler wants to see a red planet named "Red One"
[Will there be planets with more primitive technologies?]
Yes, technically that falls under the "Fair Chance" act where UEE protects growing civilisations so that you can't uplift them or mess with them.
[Of all the systems that have been made public so far, what is the one you are looking forward to the most?]
He's very curious to see Orion because of the aesthetic and it'll answer a lot of questions when it gets into the development spotlight. Cathcart is also interesting as well.
[Do you prefer writing dialogue for good guys or bad guys?]
Bad guys because he likes the shades of grey, he likes it when bad guys aren't all that bad and it's fun to delve into their motivations behind it and why they did them. It can be fun to do it with good guys and how they aren't always white paladins.
That's the end of this week's Happy Hour. Thanks to Lead Writer, Dave Haddock and Streamer BadNewsBaron for joining the show.
https://relay.sc/transcript/around-the-verse-ship-pipeline-pt-1-concept-to-greyboxAround the Verse: Ship Pipeline Pt 1: Concept to Greybox2017-02-09T20:44:00+00:002017-02-09T22:11:11+00:00CanadianSyruphttps://relay.sc/contributor/CanadianSyrup TL;DR (Too Long; Didn't Read)
2.6.1 Has gone live to the Evocati featuring improvements to ships, weapons, and gameplay modes as well as multiple bug/crash fixes, MegaMap for singleplayer and the long awaited Regional servers for Europe and Australia.Forrest has been working on the Hologram tech used for briefing pilots on capital ships which will be featured in Squadron 42.Studio Update
Rob Reiniger has completed the shopping kiosk design document and is now discussing the timeline for implementationThe kiosk interface supports shopping for items (clothing, weapons, components, etc.) and landing pad services (refueling and repairs)Animation team is polishing useable animations (table leans) and creating the female versions of pre-existing animations (work zones, table leans)Ship Animation team has been polishing the combat speed cockpit enter and exit animationsNext the team will begin implementing new interactive cockpit start up sequences for the different cockpit typesChris Smith and Josh Coons have been progressing with the improved Super Hornet and the Drake Cutlass Black respectivelyDevOps are working towards supporting multi-region server deployment and plan to use data centers around the world to spin up more servers in North America, Europe, and Australia.Ship Pipeline: Concept to Greybox
Luke Davis, Foundry 42 producer, has seen the ship pipeline move from disjointed outsourcing to a more efficient template driven in-house processJim Martin really likes the cheat sheets they provide that helps to guide him in the creative processLuke Davis states it's more about more about function of the design in game than making a pretty shipElwin Bachiller takes the concept model and rebuild it due to polycount and technology constraints while making changes along the way with some being in the white box phaseJim Martin states that once the process begins the collaboration keeps everyone honest and the creativity productiveOne of the biggest issues with concept is getting the metrics right and being in constant communication with the other disciplines to make sure everyone is happy with what they're responsible for on a given shipIn the whitebox phase a rough blockout of a ship is made and it can fly around, shoot, basically do the basic things you would expect a ship to do in order give to give an idea of the final product.Greybox phase is where they add almost all the art geometry using a technique that is like custom normals, but without the taxing cost of it. Closer to finalized animations are also added in this phase.More finalised animations in this phase: landing gear, ladders, cockpit canopies, etc. because they can't build the final geometry until they know how it movesTech Design gets more involved as it moves into greybox with the goal of making it flyable and giving the other disciplines something to work with.They also start on more nuanced set up: hook up thrusters, properly seat guns, ensure everything is functioningShips are built with view to the feeling they are to invoke: sleek, clean and luxurious vs. claustrophobic and unsafeCharacter can also be communicated through animations: smooth and quick movements suggest everything is okay, while jerking and scraping suggests some dilapidationThe team has improved their workflow between Art and Design so they don't have to worry about overwriting each other's work
Sandi Gardiner (VP of Marketing), Forrest Stephan (CG Supervisor).
Sandi Gardiner (SG): Hello and welcome to Around the Verse, our behind the scenes look into the development of Star Citizen. Our special guest host today is CG Supervisor, Forrest Stephan. Welcome back to the show Forrest.
Forrest Stephan (FS): Thank you for having me, it’s absolutely great to be back.
SG: It’s great to have you back and the big news this week is of course the Alpha 2.6.1 patch being released to the Evocati along with a host of bug and crash fixes. The patch includes nice improvements and continued tweaks of weapons and flight systems.
FS: Yeah that’s absolutely fantastic. It also has the single player Mega Map which makes hopping around between levels a heck of alot easier as well as multiple regional servers which know people have been waiting for, can’t wait to get this in the hands of the players.
SG: Yeah we had Will, and Adam, and Dave, they were playing around with it today having a blast.
FS: Having a blast, totally.
SG: Before we get to the show is there anything interesting that you’ve been working on lately?
FS: Always interesting things. So I’ve been helping develop the look and the tech with art direction and cinematic design for the holograms for capital ships. You know the bridge holo globes in the briefing rooms. With all this AR stuff happening, it’s great to actually see some hologram stuff in our game and actually develop some custom tech for it so it’s pretty exciting.
SG: Very cool and is that for Squadron 42?
FS: That is for Squadron 42.
FS: It’ll eventually show up in the PU, but the focus right now is to establish a consistent look, interface, design, a way to communicate the briefings to the player for the Squadron 42 campaign.
SG: I also heard that you were working on some dead body tech.
FS: A big part of the build up for 3.0, corpses are part of the set dressing. You know in the wrecks, the abandoned ships and we wanted a way to use our loadouts, our current characters instead of placing these temporary props so we developed a system to use a physics based approach to having designers place these dead bodies everywhere.
SG: I Don’t know why I find that exciting. I don’t know what that says about me, we can move on from there.
FS: Actually if we can show a video maybe you’ll see how fun it actually is.
So it shows how our system is able to generate impulses to get some fun poses. We can create a nearly infinite amount of variety of natural poses because it's all physics driven and it all kind of depends on the simulation.
SG: That’s very cool, and that will be a great tool for our artist. Now let's go to Jake Ross for what the Austin studio has been up to.
Jake Ross (Producer).
Jake Ross (JR): Howdy folks, Jake Ross here, Producer of CIG Austin with a look at what’s going on here this month here in the Austin studio.
Lead Designer Rob Reiniger has completed his game design document for the shopping kiosk feature and we’re now discussing timeline for implementation with UI team and the Game Code team, We’re very excited to have this feature ready to implement. We’re excited to wrap this up because it means pretty soon we’ll be able to use this interface for, not just shopping but things like items and clothing, weapons, and ship parts in the game, but also for performing landing pad services such as repairing and refueling your ship, loading and unloading cargo, and that kind of thing. This is a huge step in the right direction that will allow us to bring much of the shopping experience on our website to the in-game universe.
On the animation front, the PU Animation team has been trucking along nicely on the implementing and polishing the “usable” animations that will be used in both Squadron 42 and the PU. Currently we’re polishing up these “table leans” that we’re using for things like leaning on the table in the mess hall for aboard the Idris in Squadron 42. We’ve also been getting female versions of the already existing male animations like “work zones” and “wall leans” in the game as well.
The Ship Animation team has been wrapping up polish tasks for combat speed “enters” and “exits” into the cockpits. We’re hoping to wrap all of these up by the end of the month at which point we’ll be moving on to implementing new cockpit start up sequences for the different cockpit types. Which is cool. We’re still determining who our code resource will be … that we’ll be partnering with on that feature but once that is done we’ll be ready to hit the ground running implementing awesome new interactive system for starting up your ship before take off.
On the art side of things, ship artists Chris Smith and Josh Coons have been making good progress on the new and improved Super Hornet and the Drake Cutlass Black respectively. The updates that Chris is doing on the Super Hornet are to bring the ship in line with our current quality standards that we have now. And these are almost complete and we’re looking forward to getting these out to y’all in … 2 … release 2.6.1.
Over in DevOps land we’re working hard to start supporting multi-region server deployment. We’re very excited about this feature and we’re hoping in the not too distant future we’ll be able to deploy servers in more regions than we have previously to help improve latency among other things. We’re hoping to use data centers around the world to spin up more game servers in regions like North America, Europe, and Australia.
So, yeah, that’s all I have for you this week guys. Thanks. See you around.
Back to Studio
Sandi Gardiner (VP of Marketing), Forrest Stephan (CG Supervisor).
SG: Thanks for that Jake. The Cutlass Black rework is really shaping up. It’s actually one of my favourite ships.
FS: Is it?
SG: It is.
FS: I absolutely love when we go back and do these ship updates. It’s such a great way to see how far our ship pipeline has come. Right?
SG: Not only is the tech constantly improving but our artists keep getting better with every ship they make.
FS: It’s incredible.
SG: Speaking of the ship pipeline, this week's Feature Focus reveals the extensive process ever ship goes through.
FS: Oh, it’s incredible: you have artists, you have designers, you have directors, animators, programmers, and so many more people all involved from all the studios and have their hand in creating these ships from the concept to be flight ready for us to play with.
SG: Let’s take a look.
Ship Pipeline Part 1: Concept to Greybox
Elwin Bachiller Jr (Lead Ship Artist), Matt Sherman (Technical Designer), Luke Davis (Producer), Jim Martin (Concept Artist).
Luke Davis [LD]: Hi, my name is Luke Davis. I am the producer here at Foundry 42. I look after the ship environment and U.K. tech design departments. Here at CIG the ship pipeline has seen a remarkable evolution. Before I got here at Foundry 42 we were still outsourcing ship assets to various companies to help finish the artwork that we didn't have the capacity to do in house at the time, and it proved that we had … there were very various issues that came along with outsourcing our assets.
One of the biggest issues was the, the communication breakdown between the various departments, so whereas now we have the absolute luxury of being able to have various departments and disciplines within the same studio. Specifically the art director, the art team and the tech design team are all in the same building whereas previously what we had was a tech design department in Los Angeles, we had an art team here in the U.K. and we used to outsource ships for concept and the 3D assets to another company.
What we now have now is an official design document that our tech design team both in L.A. and in the U.K. sign off on and sort of go write this how many thrusters it should have, this is the exact animation template it has to use, this is what weapons it should be using and sort of give an idea on what roughly what the ship needs. It's minimum requirements not to define the shape or you know how it should work. It's just what should be in it.
Jim Martin [JM]: One thing I really like about the process here at … at Star Citizen is that they kick you off with ... with a 3D kind of cheat sheet of volumes saying we need engine size to be roughly this particular cube, we need a gun to be this size. They, they want to make sure that as you start thinking about it, you're kind of aware of what the, what the different shapes and what the different proportions are. And that really helps me out, because when I start a design after I've looked at reference and the past ships and thought about myself on course design-wise I'm going to go in and begin with a sketch pass. And that's my thinking pass. You know when I have a pencil in my hand and I have paper in front of me and I'm just noodling and drawing that's when I'm really getting my head around what I want the design to be or how it should balance or, or what the proportions could be. And so in my first physical pass with the Buccaneer I did a kind of big cheat sheet that was basically kind of pared down to the most simple components: engines, cockpit, guns, wings. You know let's move stuff around and let's kind of see if we can get a feel for it.
LD: So one of the challenges of the ship being in the concept phase is not just to make a pretty ship, it's to make sure that it works for what we want in the game. So you know you'll, you'll take what design wants, what Chris originally envisioned for the ship, and try and turn it into some sort of image.
Elwin Bachiller [EB]: What tends to happen when we get a concept into production is we're handed a series of images that have been finalized, final paint overs and just beautiful illustrations. In addition to that we also tend to get a concept model which is what the artist use to paint over and do his final renders. To actually make that usable we tend to have to rebuild that model. We can't just … I mean we can technically take that and put it directly into the game, but it would be very expensive, because the cost of models tend to not worry about poly count anything like that, and also it wouldn't conform with some of the technology we are using. So, we essentially have to just rebuild that model, but in most cases we aren't just rebuilding the model we're also making some changes along the way, especially as we discover changes that we have to make due to the white box phase.
JM: As the concept guy you're, you're used to getting the ball rolling, but then once the ball is rolling you want that collaboration with, with the physical design team that's going to be doing the, the actual 3D of the ship. You know and you want … because they keep you honest and then you also keep them honest and you know they'll … they may kick an idea to you and go, “Well, you know, the engines are a little too close we need to balance, balance”, then you’ll say, “Well I can do this”, so it’s sort of a really great back and forth that I think is really important to the process.
LD: One of the biggest issues that we have in concept is the actual metrics because you have Chris on one side wanting the ship to look a particular way as does the art director, the art director is constantly adjusting based on the feedback Chris provides and the biggest difficulty is trying to keep the gameplay metrics that we need to work in the game such as the animation template.
So animation have four current ships it provides… for each ship we have there’s a template attached to it and we have to make sure now not to make anymore templates except when it’s absolutely needed and if we can use an existing one that works. So we go, “Right you know what, we would like same entry animation as we did on the Gladius, now try to use that entry animation on that new ship. How would it work? What are the challenges that come with it?” and it’s just to make sure everyone’s involved in communicating with everything what their new risks and issues are as part of that pipeline.
EB: So what we tend to do is we’ll get the concept model if we have one and we will essentially build a rudimentary version of the ship. It doesn’t have anywhere near the detail that the final model is going to have, but it serves as a representation for us to start playing around with gameplay elements.
So once we have this rudimentary model, we can throw that into the game super fast and working with the tech design team we can start actually adding weapons to it, we can start actually adding a rudimentary cockpit and have positions for the animations to work properly. So we can actually go into the game, walk up to this very blocky looking ship, press a button and then climb into it and start flying the ship really early on within the first week and a half to two weeks of production and this is what we call the white box phase.
MS: For the design side of that, that’s mainly just setting up some basic helpers and hardpoints. Get some thrusters on there, make sure it flights, make sure it putters around and that’s also when we do a lot of the initial placement for thrusters. So we need to make sure they’re distributed evenly across the ship, they’ll be balanced, that’s going to handle right and get the kind of performance that we want it to.
LD: So once the disciplines have had a look at it, and that’s the main part of the whitebox is that people look at it and go, “Right, I’m ready now, I’m ready for when the ship goes into production so it is further down the production”, the UI team have a look at it and gone, “Okay, they’ve done the metrics right, the screen layout is completely correct, we don’t need anything new, we are good to go”. The VFX department go, “Right, you know what, the thrusters are in the right place, and the removeable thrusters are correct, they know what type of ship items it’s using, we’re good to go as well”. Then that’s the main bit of the white box phase.
MS: Then it’s handed back to our ship artists and they just build it out and make it look fantastic during the greybox stage.
EB: On the Greybox phase, that’s where the artists tend to do a lot of heavy lifting on the geometry so we’ll actually start building very close to final geometry. We’ll start adding bevels, or as max usually calls, “chamfers” all over the ship into order to use custom normals on our ships which make it look as though its higher geometry than it actually is.
Custom normals is a technique that we use, essentially we call it custom normals, but the geometry that we have, each vertices on the surface has a direction which determines how the light bounces off the surface. So typically there’s a technique called subdivision modeling where you’ll take a surface and an edge and you will sort of reinforce that edge by adding multiple loops to either side of where you want the light to bend and that will give you a sort of nice flat surface on one side, and then a crisp little bend, and then a flat surface on the other side so it looks really smooth.
We really can’t afford to add that much geometry because it makes everything a lot more expensive to do it with that technique so what we do is we’ll take the vertices and instead of reinforcing the edges, we’ll add a single chamfer, and we will then tell the vert to have the tangent pointing it exactly where we want them to go and it will give us the illusion of having a reinforced edge without having a reinforced edge. So it gives us a much cheaper asset in terms of geometry, but the quality is just as good and it ends up making the ship look really cool, but that’s essentially what we do in the greybox phase is build as close to final geometry as we can using only two tones to break up the surface. So we’ll have a light grey and a dark grey or maybe a high spec value, a low spec value, just to get a basic breakup of the colours and how we’re going to break it up on the exterior walls.
We’ll also do more finalized animations in this stage. So we’ll go ahead and build full landing gear and actually do the folding up and closing to make sure everything closes perfectly and looks beautiful. And we’ll do this for landing gears, we’ll do this for ladders, we’ll do this for the cockpit canopies: anything that moves on the ship is something that we end up animating within the greybox phase mostly because we can’t build the final geometry without knowing how it’s going to move. So it’s really important for us to work on animation and building simultaneously.
LD: Because when you go into greybox you start needing to … Tech Design get much more involved. They have a working ship, or … in whitebox form, and their job is then to go and make it flyable in the engine. And of course it’s only going to be a flyable whitebox, but it’s flyable nevertheless. And it’s trying to make it work for all the other disciplines. The goal is at the end of the Tech Design greybox phase, is that other disciplines have something to work with.
MS: Once I get it back from there it starts getting into more of the nuanced set up. So really getting final thruster items hooked up and not just placeholder items. Making sure all the guns are seated properly. Making sure everything is functioning - giving the player the right line of sight. Making sure they have the right speed or convergence angle. Just all that real core tuning that starts to really build a ship out and give it its character.
EB: So we try to produce a ship thinking about the kind of experience and feeling that the player is meant to have. And you can really see this exposed in a lot of our bigger ships that have large interior environments. So some ships are meant to feel very sleek and clean, luxurious - so you’ll have a lot of clean walls, a lot of brightly lit areas. And some ships are meant to feel really claustrophobic and unsafe. The Caterpillar is a great example of that: it’s dark, it’s dank; there are a lot of sharp edges sticking out.
So we can also communicate that character with our animations. So one really good example of that would be the way … something as simple as the way a door opens. If you have a very smooth, quick movement on the door it gives you the sense that everything’s working properly; there’s no mechanical problems with it. Whereas opposed if you have a door that jerks a little bit and looks like it’s scraping across the side as it moves out you get a sense that the ship’s a little bit more dilapidated. That kind of thing.
So when we build ships here we try to build our proxy animations to have some of that feeling in them. So if a landing … if it’s a ship that’s not meant to be perfectly smooth and perfectly refined - the Buccaneer's a great example of this as well - we would like the landing gear to deploy and feel like it’s dropping before it gets caught because it’s not a perfectly smooth transition.
So that’s … those are just a few of the ways that we try to add character and personality to the ships.
MS: One of the things that we’ve done really well with building out the Buccaneer is … even before the first whitebox was checked in Elwin had been planning out a new … just a new way of laying out some of the files or ... updating our current method of laying out the file inside 3D Studio Max that has really sped up the process on doing hand-offs between art and design where an issue can be called out. “Okay, cool”. The feedback goes back and forth. And I can still work, set everything up, without ever having to worry about their work overwriting mine or mine overwriting theirs. So it just removes a lot of roadblocks and that way it lets us - even with any uncertainty - it lets us be agile enough to jump onto the Buccaneer or the Cutlass or whatever other ship or task is coming up when the time comes for it.
LD: The Drake Buccaneer is now considered greybox complete in the production pipeline. There’s still many steps remaining before it can be considered flight ready and we’ll be back later when it is.
Sandi Gardiner (VP of Marketing), Forrest Stephan (CG Supervisor).
SG: A lot of really great info in there and it’s fun to see how everything comes together.
FS: Yeah it really is. And of course us developers can only do so much, we rely a lot on the feedback that you, the backers, provide to us. All of your testing is vital to the project so keep playing, contributing through the Issue Council and the forums.
SG: And Star Citizen would not be what it is without your support.
FS: And the support of our Subscribers.
SG: That is very correct. And it’s thanks to them that we’re able to share the in-depth, behind-the-scenes shows we bring to you weekly. Thank you all so very much.
FS: And that’s our show for the week.
SG: That’s our show. Who knew? Make sure to tune in tomorrow 12pm Pacific for the latest Happy Hour stream to what some live gameplay and discussion with Lead Writer Dave Haddock.
FS: Oh, awesome. And until then …
Both: We’ll see you around the ‘verse.