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Around the ‘Verse: Episode 2.13 Written Thursday 7th of January 2016 at 01:00pm by CanadianSyrup

The first episode of Around of the ‘Verse for 2016 is here! The Relay transcript inside. Todays transcript consisted of nearly nine thousand words and took two and a half hours to complete, The Relay...

The first episode of Around of the ‘Verse for 2016 is here! The Relay transcript inside.

Todays transcript consisted of nearly nine thousand words and took two and a half hours to complete, The Relay signing off…

Transcript by CanadianSyrup, Shiver Bathory, Erris, and Stormy Winters

TLDR (Too Long; Didn’t Read)

  •  Sandy is in Manchester, with Erin Roberts this week.
  •  2.1 will stay on the PTU for now, till it’s more stable.
  •  There may be some ‘surprise’ content added to 2.1 Live release.
  •  Squadron 42 and lots of iteration on the Persistent Universe to be expected this year. Multiple people working on a plan of what exactly to deliver this year.
News from around the ‘Verse

Los Angeles

  •  Aware of many stability issues with 2.1 right now, engineers are all hands on deck to get those issues fixed.
  •  They’re going on a crusade to make Crusader better.
  •  Very close with the Reliant. Daniel Komensky is modeling the landing gear
  •  John Pritchett is working on the EVA system more.


  • First day back as of recording so not too much progress, but what to look forward to
  • Hurston is getting a pass on it’s landing zone layout by Tony and plans for other locations to have smaller landing pads so they can get that out sooner compared to the bigger ones.
  • Animation team in Austin put together a list of things they want to do for 2016 including 3 different enter/exit animations such as Combat, Relaxed, and Emergency.
  • Ship landing style guides are in progress, each manufacture will land their ship a certain way IE. Misc, Anvil, etc.
  • Chris gave the engineering teams across the studio’s a list of things to accomplish and they’ll be busy in organizing that list and seeing what can be done, if they can be and how long it will take and finally scheduling them into their task list.

Foundry 42 UK

  • Chris and several other key CIG members are at the studio along with others coming shortly in the next couple months to help synchronize things amongst the studios
  • There isn’t a lot to report due to everyone getting in the swing of things after the break. Lots of meetings and plans being laid out for the new year, but next week will have a lot more to talk about

Foundry 42 Frankfurt

  • Only just recently got back in the office.
  • Engine team is working more on the procedural tech.
  • A lot of teams are focused on roadmaps and schedules for the year ahead
  • Cinematics has some new heads and faces in place and working on new stuff
ATV Interview with Jeff Pease
  • When JP first started at CIG, the game was the size of a console release game.
  • CIG have QA ‘specialists’ that focus on various sections of the game. JP specialized in the Lobby system, Tyler is an FPS specialist, etc…
ATV: Behind the scenes
  • Engineering colour scheme has switched to yellow as people associated yellow with Engineering
  • Two lighting schemes to define atmosphere, more dark light for the engineering area and more neutral white light for the technical area
  • Further the technology of process and manufacturing metal, something more high tech with the feeling of an old mining industry
  • Hydraulic jack systems like paraseismic absorbers
  • Defining materials to provide a set library for artists to choose from
  • Breaking up repetition, makes different areas look different
  • MVP for this week is the noobfier1337 for his video explaining the weapon and hardpoint system of alpha 2.0
Sneak peek
  • In this week’s Art sneak peek they show us the Reliant again but now entering the Texturing Phase. It appears to have a basic metallic texture instead of the straight up graybox we saw last time.

Full Transcript


SG: Hey everybody, welcome to Around the ‘Verse. I’m Sandi Gardiner and I’m coming to you from Foundry 42 in Manchester England.

ER: And I’m Erin Roberts and I’m filling in for Ben this time. It’s my second outing so hopefully I live up to expectations.

SG: And I’m here in rainy manchester, slightly cold.

ER: This is quite good for this time of year

SG: Well I’m wearing my thermals in your office so I’m not sure what that says and I’m drinking lots of tea.

ER: It’s a bit wet, but it’s not too bad. We just had the warmest December since records began, or was it the wettest, or one of the two.

SG: I think wettest. If you don’t already know, Star Citizen Alpha 2.1 is currently available on the PTU and our bug smashers are working hard to prepare for a live release with the help of thousands of backers.

ER: It’s going really well. We obviously were trying to get it out just before Christmas for you guys, but there’s one of two issues we want to fix up rather than just put something out we weren’t happy with. We kept it on PTU so you get the best of both worlds so people can play 2.0 which we felt was more stable and 2.1 for people who want to see the new features so that’s kind of cool. I think you will be pleased what we’re going live with for 2.1. Some of you guys who have been playing 2.1 will see some stuff and we may add in a surprise in there as well for people later on next week.

SG: This week we talked to CIG Austin’s Live Ops Technician Jeff Pease.

ER: And we’re going to take a special look at our concept guys with Paul Jones our art director. We’re going to talk through some of the way we do stuff and maybe give you a glimpse of stuff they’re working on

SG: But first it’s a new year! The development had a good break over the holidays and now we’re ready to get back to work

ER: 2016 is going to be a big year for us. Obviously I know everyone is looking forward to Squadron 42, were working hard on that. We’re also going to be updating the Persistent Universe like mad now that we’ve got 2.0 finished. It means we can actually iterate and get a lot new content out to you guys so that’s the focus of the organization. Actually right now we have about 8 or 9 people from across the different studios all working together on creating and finalizing a plan of what we’re just going to get through this year and delivering to you guys.

SG: We’ve got a great show this week so let’s take a look first at what is going on around the verse.

News from around the ‘Verse

Los Angeles

EKD: Hey everybody, welcome back to rainy LA.

DV: It is really rainy

EKD: it’s pouring on us, I don’t know what happened.

DV: El Nino

EKD: The skies opened and here it is. We’ve got some updates for you, I’m Eric Kieron Davis with

DV: Darian Vorlick

EKD: We’ve got many things to talk about, why don’t you kick it off?

DV: So first of all, wishing everybody a happy new year, I hope 2016 is turning great for you guys. So our news for this week, starting off with 2.1. Stability being our primary concern. We’re aware of many stability issues that are going on and so our engineers are pretty much all hands on deck to get all the stability issues hammered out. It is seriously all hands on deck for any stability issues that pop up. We got Paul Rindell, Mark Abent, all other engineers. Allen, Ariel.

EKD: And while it’s generally important that stability is a very big part of us making games. Right now we’re really on a kind of crusade to make Crusader better…

DV: yeah, Wow…

EKD: That was for you Darian

DV: No..

EKD: We’ve talked about the Reliant a lot but we’re really really close. We’re modeling damage right now, we’re modeling the landing gear. The landing gear is being worked on right now by Daniel Komensky, one of our artists over there alongside our lead Elwin. There doing a great job, our Reliant is looking good. I know you guys got to see it a couple weeks ago. It has come along way from then which I’m excited about.

DV: It’s looking pretty cool. Finally our flight engineer John Prichett. So this is the guy that develops all of our flight systems, IFCS flight controls. He’s actually working on fine tuning the EVA system based on the feedback… The kind of the demos that we’ve shown you guys of how the EVA functioning. So we’ve been trying to do some fine tuning, make it actually a lot more enjoyable and a lot more, what’s the word I’m looking for… Visceral! I guess, smooth?

EKD: Sure! Good feeling. And John because he does IFCS and does all the movements for ships it blends perfectly in with the EVA system. They talk to each other, they’re very similar and it’s been a big thing on his plate as we’ve gotten out of the IFCS updates.

DV: And it just started pouring really hard!

EKD: And with that so we don’t get rained on I think we’re all set. Thanks for checking in, see you next week, I’m Eric

DV: I’m Darian!


JR: Hey guys, Jake Ross here. Associate Producer of the Persistent Universe and I’m here with this week coming back from a little break as we all are and now we’re raring to go and get things started in the new year. We’re shooting this on Monday so we’ve been back a grand total of less than 8 hours so not a lot to report on, but we are looking ahead very much so. One thing I can tell you is that we are looking to do a pass on our Hurston landing zone layout. We are kind of going back not the drawing board, but Tony wanted to kind of get his hands in it and tweak it himself so he’s kind of taking it back and revamping it. These hero locations like Arc Corp, Hurston, Nyx, they require a lot of attention so one thing that we’re doing is we’re kind of re evaluating the landing zones we’re going to be releasing here in the near term because there’s just so much work that goes into them.

So we’re trying to figure out, okay, we have these big old landing zones here, let’s work on some littler landing zones and get a little more content out in a less amount of time. Hurston is kind of undergoing some rework. Tony and Mark Skelton and Rob Reiniger are going over that layout and making sure everything is good to go there before they pass it off to the designers again for whiteboxing, so we’re doing that. The ship animators have come up with a ship animation team wishlist for 2016, things they want to work on and improve you know because our ship animation team is in Austin. Our ship artists are kind of spread out between LA, Austin, and the UK. Our designers for the ships are all over the places, well so there’s a lot of disparity between you know what goes on in the various studios so we’re syncing that up.

The ship animation team will want to work on things like landing sequence style guides so a Misc ship will land a certain way and an Anvil ship will land a certain way, they want to kind of standardize that and work with the design team on that. They also want to do variable turret seat height design driven solutions for variable turret seat heights. Some of the turrets in the various ships are supposively reusable across the variant manufactures, but the art isn’t quite following some of the metrics we’ve put in place so we’re trying to communicate a little better on that and make sure we’re all following the same templates and stuff. So that’s one thing that they wanted to tackle.

The last thing, there’s several things in that list, but last thing i’ll mention here is the three different speeds for enter and exit animations. We shot combat speeds, relaxed speeds and emergency speeds for getting in and out of cockpits for all the different ships. We currently only have one speed in place and we want to get those other two speeds in place as well because some of you guys are wanting to be able to get out of your seats more quickly so we’re wanting to incorporate that as well.

Last thing I’ll mention is we have Chris Roberts himself put together an engineering task list for 2016 for all the various disciplines across the company in engineering department. We’ll be working here with the networking team, jason Kneeling heading that up to take a look at that list and make sure what we’re being asked is achievable and putting estimates on those tasks and scheduling those in. It’s a lot of scheduling, it’s a lot of looking ahead, but it’s all you can really do when you’ve only been back for one day. Next week we should have a bigger update for you guys, but that’s kind of what we’re working on this week so, thanks, see ya.

Foundry 42 UK

Ahoy there shipmates and welcome to the UK, it’s been a busy start to 2016 over here. We’ve been busy trying to get the 2.1 build live to you guys and also planning ahead for the next couple of releases. We’ve also got quite a few guests over with us at the moment. We’ve got Chris Roberts for a couple of weeks to just to sync up with the Design Team and the Engineers.

We’ve also got the writers over at the moment so really drilling into Squadron 42 episode 1 and we’ve got even more guests coming next week with Hannis coming out with the cinematic schedule as well as getting all the Artists together and really look at the plan ahead for this year. We got Forest coming over from LA to take a look at characters and yeah, lots and lots of meetings to start the new year with. We’ll be looking now to basically solidify our plans and really start to drill into more of the requirements and getting all those tasks laid out and getting the resources assigned to them. Lots of busy planning at the moment as well as work on the actual live release.

Quite a shock to the system getting back after the long break over the holidays for a lot of people. Lot of people are sort of getting into gear and figuring out what it is they are going to be doing since the break and we kind of just getting our teeth into lots of different things. Next week I’ll be bringing someone else along with me so you guys don’t get too bored of seeing just me, but that’s it for this week. Sorry it’s kind of brief, but yeah we’ll fill in some more of the tracks and the bits and bobs next week. Okay, see you in the verse!

Foundry 42 Frankfurt

Hey everyone Brian Chambers from Frankfurt. Just got back from the holiday break, most of the teams rolling in now getting settled short time but needed time to relax and hang out with friends and family. So not a tremendous amount to update on since we just got back. Some of the stuff we are working on though; Engine Teams are already going to town and pushing more on the procedural stuff you saw. They already have some more stuff done which is pretty cool. Not sure when you’ll see it but you definitely will.

A lot of the team is right now focusing on roadmaps and schedules and plans for this upcoming year. It’s a perfect opportune time with a new year let’s look at the timelines, let’s look at the schedules, let’s look at the priorities. Kind of get all the stakeholders in place to dig through all that and see where we’re all at and anything’s changed and what we want to modify and so on. Cinematics team is still pushing on some stuff, I just saw some scenes they were putting together. Got some new heads and faces in that’s looking really good.

Yeah besides that on the holiday break it was nice actually had some time to dig through forums and Twitch and so on and read a bunch of stuff from backers and from fans which is rare that I have time to do that just because we’re so busy in the office, in the process what I found was my brother in law actually who’s old school PC gamer has actually been streaming Star Citizen on Twitch for I guess a while and he’s nuts doing it five, six eight hours a day. Want to make a mention to him, his name is Stoutman_PR. I know a few of you will check him out he’s having fun playing the game it’s like you know the rest of you guys.

Here’s to 2016 hope everyone had a good holiday and good new year and we look forward to what we’re going to put together this year and show you guys. Take care.

ATV Interview with Jeff Pease

Jared Huckaby: Thanks guys on this week’s AtV interview, i’m sitting down with Jeffrey Pease, QA specialist; Jeffrey how are you doing?

Jeffrey Pease: Good to have you back out here. Doing good hungry but that’s normal ‘cause i’m a twig. I am hungry all the time!

JH: Would you like us to get you something to eat?

JP: No no no, it’s a normal state of being for me, i’m accustomed to.

JH: Alright, well in a little bit afterwards we’ll just be eating, it’ll be at the end of the episode. Now Jeffrey you’re pretty vociferous on our website and on Reddit, where folks know you mainly as Bearded-CIG. So if you’ve ever wanted to put a face to Bearded-CIG this is Bearded, QA Specialist. We had Tyler Witkin on the show a couple weeks ago. Tell us what he didn’t, tell us about a day in the life of Quality Assurance.

JP:  It’s going to end up being different for all of us. When I first got here the game was about the size of, a console release game would be. We had a couple of maps, couple of game modes, couple of ships. I’ve tested console games in the past that were about the size of what we were testing when I first got hired. And I knew that also having experienced testing on MMO games at SOE I knew that we were going to need to either have a much bigger QA team or have us all specialise on different parts of the game. Because ultimately it’s just way too big for anyone to be an expert on everything and you end up having better communication when you have that one dude who is responsible for stuff.

I ended up being the first specialist because we had a producer walk into the QA area and be like “Hey we’re going to be doing a new version of the Lobby System and we need someone to test it”. I immediately went “I’ll do it”. Because I knew that it would give me a chance to prove that the specialist system was useful. It would, and it would also allow me to interface with the Server Engineers closely and then that would allow me to further get into, helping with the backend stuff and being able to bug things in regards to things like that. Now I’ve transitioned into stuff that we can talk about later, because that’s not really your question.

A day in the life of what Tyler does, Tyler is our FPS specialist because after I had proven that the specialist system ended up being useful our QA Lead and our QA Manager were like “Alright I really like what you did with the Lobby System we should have specialists for everything”. Well we don’t have a big enough QA Team to have specialists for everything but we can be really general. So Tyler is the FPS specialist, because he likes playing FPS games, he has a good idea as to what’s supposed to go in the FPS stuff. I’m terrible at them, I have a friend that’s really good at FPS games. We had this one game we had where I was literally pointing my sniper rifle where his head popped up and he still killed me first. All I heard was him go “Oh crap” And I died.

JH: So what are you a specialist for?

JP: I am a combination of sort of the Lead Specialist and while it’s a bit of a misnomer because i’m not considered QA Leadership, i’m considered more of a mentor in that I help provide information to people in the event that they are not sure what’s going on and I also sort of crafter all of our documentation, and i’m also the specialist for the Lobby System and a lot of our backend systems so if anything breaks with like the General Instance Manager, the game servers, things like that, if a server crashes i’m the only person on the QA Team that currently knows how to look at our server logs. I’m teaching somebody in the UK how to do that. I also use some of our analytics to find things like memory leaks and generally am the only one that looks at our concurrency graphs to find major issues that are causing server crashes or disconnects to try and help improve the stability of the game and then try and convince the producers something live until we can fix more things and I usually lose that fight but that’s cause we’re in alpha.

JH: It is a different beast because we are supporting a live game during development. If this were a traditional release we absolutely would hold on to every little thing until it was perfect to put it out. But at this point you know it’s a, we’re a beast with many masters in a way. We have to serve many aspects of development all at the same time with challenges that no other game especially no other game of this size would have.

JP: Yeah, yeah. It’s a whole lot of fun to try and troubleshoot things that break ‘cause I am a real big fan of trying to gather ridiculous amounts of information and try and make sense of it all. It makes the job rewarding and just problem solving, when you figure out what the answer to that is you’re all like “Yes I got it!”.

JH: Now we’ve introduced Which Glitch a couple of months ago, to show off some of our more humorous or interesting glitches, bugs. Somebody wanted me to ask you if there was something, what was your favourite glitch or bug that had happened prior to the invention of Which Glitch, something that you wish we all could have seen that had happened at some point

JP: So the QA Team even before Which Glitch started we had a habit of just saving things that were just hilarious in our hard drives and just because it’s we’re like “Man this is awesome we should save this just because it’s funny”. I believe my favourite one which was on like  the first or second episode just because I had it saved on my hard drive and was like “This needs to go out there”. It was, I had ran into a Vanduul Scythe and its blade fell off and got embedded in the cockpit geometry of my Aurora so it looked like I was running around with the Buster Sword from Final Fantasy trying to murder things. Then one of the UK testers took that from the bug that I wrote and then put the Final Fantasy combat music to the video and then shipped it backed over to us and were like “Here watch this”. It’s probably one of my favourites.

JH: And what’s one that drove you crazy. One that pushed you right to the edge made you question whether you were in the right business?

JP: Oh God. Every now and then we’ll have issues on the backend where just something will cause the stability to barf all over itself and you just can’t find steps for it. You’re like “I know this happens. I can’t figure out what I’m doing to get it to happen”. Those end up being the most frustrating because you, a lot of the times if the programmers can’t figure out what’s wrong with it, they’ll send it back to you asking for more information and you’re sitting there going “I..I…” Like we have some server crashes that are happening right now that nobody knows how to get them to happen we just know that they happen because we can see them crashing and I know what like, the I can get the information from the backend in regards to what the server logs looked like and the callstacks. We don’t know what’s actually causing them, it’s so frustrating because I want to help make the game more stable for the players and nobody knows what’s causing them to happen

JH: But we’ll figure it out

JP: Yeah.

JH: There’s no hope. Star Citizen will never be fixed!

JP: Never! There’s no hope! We’ll figure it out. Right now it’s, we have more important things to work on.

JH: Alpha 2.0?

JP: Yeah that.

JH: Which may or may not be out by the time you see this, we don’t know. So where did you come from before this?

JP: I worked at Blizzard for five years, before that I was at SOE, before that I was at SCEA. SOE and SCEA I was QA, moved on to be a Game Master at Blizzard for five years. Similar to what I do in Q. I was really good at the game side of stuff for Customer Service there in, if you had something go wrong in game, I was the guy you wanted to talk to ‘cause I was one of the best at looking at the server logs there. Then moved on here because I, my dad got me my first Wing Commander game when I was like in middle school, and then got me Wing Commander 3 when I was in high school and when I saw Star Citizen had an Austin location I was like “I need to work there!”

JH: Alright, alright. Final question; what’s this, what’s going on here?

JP: It grows too fast to be worth the time to shave.

JH: That’s it?

JP: Yeah

JH: Alright, alright. At least it’s all one colour I have the multi coloured thing

JP: I have like one white hair that’s like it’s somewhere in this area.

JH: You don’t colour it’s just all that dark all the time?

JP: Yeah. Sometimes the colour changes if I stay out in the sun too long, except it gets darker which is weird. I’ve done that, like I spent a day outside and someone was like “Did you dye your hair?” and i’m like “No” They’re like “It’s really dark”. That’s kind of the opposite of how that’s supposed to work right?

JH: That’s it for the AtV interview, it’s been a pleasure, back to you guys.

ATV Behind the scenes: Shubin

Paul Jones: So welcome back, good to see you guys again. It’s Maple Jones, Art Director for Foundry 42 and here with me is Gary Sanchez again. We’re going to do another little in depth segment about some of the content we’ve been working on the past few months. Today we’re going to cover Shubin, obviously those fans have been around with us a long time will be aware that Shubin mining platform has been part of Squadron 42 probably since we first started. It’s a 6 km long base with huge lasers that mine asteroids tethered to this base.

We’ve done…there’s been quite a lot of concept done on this on the exterior. The exterior is done by Andy Lay, interior by John McCoy and Yan Urshil. One of the problems I’ve had is sometimes through availability I have to switch concept artists, you know, the difficulty for me is basically that sometimes the artist’s style are slightly different or maybe I haven’t given strong enough direction that does happen sometimes, hold up my hands.

Most of the time, it’s decent enough direction the concept artist will understand what I’m driving for and what Chris wants, we arrive at something good. With Shubin, for the interiors we originally started off with two interiors, it was called the small room set and the large room set and it did exactly what they said on the team, one for was for small rooms, one was for large rooms, like hangars, one was for corridors and stuff. You know, we quickly found we were suffering from visual fatigue, there was a lot of repetition.

Orange was our sort of accent colour but it was coming too repetitive and obviously we’re striving to make a triple A experience wanting that depth, we want it, you guys want it, between us…me and Gary..Gary’s been driving a lot of this. We’ve been working hard  on taking as Gary would say, the spirit of the John McCoy stuff and kind of advancing it. It’s not on the screen at the moment but originally we started off with a corridor, we’ll get to that in a bit, because corridors, I see them as the backbone of any sort of interior space.

From that everything sort of branches off and it makes it a lot easier if you sort of figure out style guides, colours, all of that good stuff. Like I said, we suffered from visual fatigue, there wasn’t enough variety going. It was kind of cool, I mean the corridor we had and the segments we had were good but after working on the Idris and the stuff Nate and team has done on that, we basically started to head towards more the archetypes so what is it again Gary, the four archetypes, technical….

Gary Sanchez: Technical, habitation….

PJ: Habitation…

GS: And…

PJ/GS: Engineering.

PJ: So, those are the three we’ve been working on just recently and you’ll see stuff today that possibly Chris won’t have seen yet. It’s not fully signed off, he knows we’re going in this direction, we’ve been really trying to sort of push this as an environment set because this won’t only be used for Shubin there will be other mining places or we may re appropriate it and turn it into like some mobile mining base or something, who knows, but basically we’re trying to create the variety, create the modularity, it will the designers the flexibility to give the fans as much variety as possible basically.

So, in our journey this is sort of basically how we’ve been splitting it up and like I mentioned we had orange everywhere it was orange, orange, orange, orange so we basically you know just simple thing we’ve just been changing up the colour palette. For engineering we’ve basically switched to yellow just to continue, you know, a lot of people associate yellow with engineering it’s more like JCB, it’s like Caterpillar it’s that, it’s that….. sort of industrial feel so that’s kind of our signature colour in one area, I mean Gary you’ve put this together

GS: So, to show that the more industry are part of Shubin is more dark and more like an underground industry, engineering area. So, as per say we took some kind of modern industry we put something more high tech and personal from the game and we also differentiate the two level of Shubin with making some transition props and room to harmonize all the design of all Shubin, but we it was a request for the gameplay to have two different levels so the challenge was to harmonize all the props but we still are still having two atmospheres in the Shubin area so the underground engineering and technical, habitation area are more and more high tech. So, this is the main spirit of….

PJ: So, this basically shows your….

GS: The tools and some…

PJ: Security assets and then basically engineering area. Basically the larger of the amount of colour is your base colour.

GS: It’s based on also on the lighting because we play on two lightings to define atmosphere so more dark light for the whole engineering area and more neutral white light for the technical area.

PJ: So, here these two existing concepts worked on by yan or sean.

GS: I think it’s yan and this one is..

PJ: That’s John McCoy’s, so basically we’re taking a lot more style cues, this is quite industrial but we really liked what Yan had done with the large numbers and the big graphics so really just sort of taking more of that and taking it inside. Also for the technical area getting closer to John McCoy’s original idea and metals, slight orange accents, cool lighting, light greys and a dash of, what have we got there, white…it’s hard to see on this screen at this angle. So, that’s pretty much the route we’ve been taking. So we’ll show you a few more pieces, what have we got…

GS: So, we define each object and each props of the industrial engineering area, like real industrial object but with a touch that is defined by some materials, to break with some, too much old industrial code, so we keep some carbon fiber to define the pipes, to define some tools, so there is also all the graphics,

PJ: And also, just pop back, in the line work as well you know, one of the original sort of like ideas I guess I had with this set was there was always to be a small amount of radius on the objects, it wasn’t to be super harsh. Angles, ninety degrees or split you know, harsh, folds in metal whatever, there was always going to be a slight radius, a softness, so Gary’s kept that in mind.

GS: So we research the, we keep the industrial code of the more modern industry existing from our days, even for the graphic stuff like, this is from coming from NASA and we modify to see what kind of sign it’s research about what kind of sign we can translate to the industry and engineering area to have an immersive feeling. So we define some structural elements

PJ: Yeah, because the Shuban cardas, always had this feeling of it was essentially an exoskeleton cage, it was fully modular, and from that either interiors or exteriors were bolted on to this cage. But we were finding with the original stuff that it wasn’t coming out real enough, like it was still looking like a game. It was a well-rendered game, it looked good but it needed more fidelity

GS: Yes, and we would like to put a little bit also further the technology of process and manufacturing metal, so we try to go on the next step after pressed metal, we wanted something more high-tech, but keeping the feeling of old mining industry

PJ: Yeah, because Shubin is, you know it’s, it’s sort of a floating factory, but it is high-tech, you know, there’s a lot of high tech equipment that’s being used on the exterior, the exterior a little more high-tech than we have the interiors, so it’s kind of just again what I’d call second round concept. Basically you know Gary’s doing an awesome job of harmonizing it, of you know, bringing everything into line, making it feel coherent and you know, you’ll see as we go along that basically artists you know, it’s not paint by numbers, you know there’s still a certain creativity involved, but you know, hopefully we will advance on a lot of questions that they may get stuck on.

GS: So we begin to introduce some hydraulic jack systems that will be like paraseismic absorbers, so

PJ: Kind of like a shock absorber isn’t it? yeah

GS: Yeah, to show that even just to have pressed metal is to go further, to say okay we have some structural high-tech equipment that will define and keep the spirit of mining industry, but going further with the modern technology that exists from our old days, or the dirty look like innovation in our old days for biggest building. So we try to redefine some props and make the hull identity with some props, some security barriers, here we begin to see also, we work a lot with some mood boards, to see what is the new technology from our days, how we can translate it, how we can go a little bit further,

PJ: And this has all come about because I was falling this, you know the archetypes, you know there would have already been a mood board originally, but this is sort of what we call second round mood board, you know, it’s an advancement and really just helps us figure out what our direction, what’s important, what are the key what are the key things when we’re working in this area.

GS: So there is the texture of the UI, all the small elements that will make some reason, and break a little bit the repetitive things into corridors, so we try to to make some of them into all these parts and with some research through the mood board.

PJ: So what we have here is an engineering corridor. This is built by the artists here and you can see that it’s in a pretty good solid state. Floors, walls, ceilings, supports, but you know, it’s at this stage where you know, often you know we need to take it further so you know, again we’ll go to a second round pass of concept. And you know, Gary’s been the master of this, of like sort of taking it and really working up the detail you know, it’s a lot more important these days for us to define the materials you know in the past it used to be that, I think that the artist had a lot more leeway with it in the sense, they would have a concept image and you would leave it up to the artists to build the material and oft they would go, here we’re a lot more, we’re trying to define a lot more, you know, obviously we’ve got a lot of things to worry about, memory budgets and streaming and you know, not duplicating textures and just being optimal.

And this is all part of the process, you know, is defining materials, and you know, providing a library for this set so the artist can choose from whatever it is for example, say 15 materials like, okay I know it’s this brush matte, or it’s this polished plastic, or it’s this hexagonal whatever it is. And you know, it’s all about streamlining the process basically. We obviously have a lot of work to do for Squadron and for Star Citizen, and anything we can do to sort of cut down on iteration time, is as good as possible you know.

We’re obviously, we’ve all got a lot of experience, but you know Star Citizen I think has tested everybody, and you know, we are developing new techniques constantly as we go along, same for the interiors, the ships have had, are ahead of environments in a way in terms of the development, you know, environments definitely are on track now, we now just have to start building final arts, or getting to that point, but that being said. from this we’ll flick over to something we did earlier, not that one, not that one, one second, this one. And so here, this is basically what we’ve been working on in terms of just you know, tightening up the feel basically, really sort of pushing that high-tech technical feel of Shubin, so you’re almost like inside a swiss watch. It’s… there’s a lot of stuff that’s been added in this image I mean, Gary, feel free to jump in and give us a little more info about the kind of things you’ve been working on in this image…

GS: Yeah, we found some interesting with the 3D environment and asked an artist to make some textures, that I take like that for the pipes. Also to have some small components around these kinds of pipes that gives some more high tech feeling, all these kinds of details around the door and changing also the pattern into something more modern. We keep so the industrial code of the industry, but we’re trying to put it a little bit further with some high-tech feeling through the materials, through small components, and a walk on lighting too to have this underground spirit for Shubin, and generating our…

PJ: So for you know, for the eagle-eyed people out there, you’ve probably noticed this sort of rear section of this image, of this corridor, is a little bit pasted in. This is, you know, what often happens is that Gary or you know, concept artists will produce an image, and it might not be quite what I’m after, so I’ll draw all over their work or, you know, photoshop some elements in that I’m happy with. Of course, my time is quite limited, so it’s generally done quite swiftly but it, you know, it’s really for me it’s about getting the direction across basically of what I want as fast as possible. As you all know I’m not just working on interiors, it’s ships, it’s the full shebang. But here it’s you know, again, it’s just sort of, this is essentially a toilet block. This’ll be part of developing the Shubin believability. You want toilet blocks, kitchens, you want vending machines or, depending on what the area is, chances are this is sort of coming out of some industrial area and coming into a break room, you’ve got certain highlights of, actually that is an exit figure, it should be really a toilet figure, but, and then we’ve also got some light, some essentially chinese text there, but that just sort of represents a direction that we’re sort of investigating in terms of having english and some kind of iconography or maybe another language basically, so we’re going to work with the writers more on that to just figure out how we get that dual layer, but again it sort of lends itself to that. You’re in high-tech, it’s advanced, multiple languages, and so these are the things we’re kind of working with, again we’re sort of figuring out lighting, mood, materials,

GS: reiterating through decals, to know how all the Shubin area has been constructed, so we know through the decals where is a part that has been conceived in the first part of the construction, and how it has been implemented shoe by shoe, so for having more storytelling

PJ: So obviously we’ll try our best in this session not to give away any spoilers, so we’ll just be concentrating on sort of the theory behind the visuals that we’ve been creating. We have like a transit hub, this is not giving any of the story away, but it is, it’s an important room for many reasons really, because it helped define the architecture. It’s also helping define the large room architecture, and so Gary’s been working heavily on this as you can tell so it kind of looks like a madman, but when you zoom in, everything’s got a good theory which Gary can give you a bit more info about.

GS: So the main thing, it’s before going too much into art work with atmospheric feeling and things like that, we are trying to give some immersive feeling to the room, like it has been manufactured for real into the game, through some components and through a real manufacturer conception. So we were inspired with Paul about hydraulic system, that are like shock absorbers…

PJ: So we’re kind of thinking as if all the interior spaces essentially have shock absorbing system, so say Shubin, and I mean it’s all theoretical right, but it ties into the fiction of the world, so say Shubin facility gets hit by a large asteroid, every segment has its own internal shock absorption, so theoretically they’d reduce damage. In reality, it makes for good visuals you know,

GS: Yeah, it helps to make something looking interesting between some big industrial element, with some high tech textures on it, so we are keeping the code of industrial things but with some conceptual engineering component, so this is what could be interesting in this kind of large room, to play with scale on different industrial component. And we try to define before the artwork what will be the place of each manufactured component, if it’s fitting with the gameplay and all this kind of harmonization, before going too  far on art, and then we can begin to make the artwork.

PJ: This is all, this is all based off whitebox we’ve had from the design department, so you know, we already know the sort of spacing and everything works for AI and gameplay etc… so it’s really about sort of how do we make this huge space interesting visually, how do you make it striking. But also still keep that mechanical, high-tech feel.

GS: So here, it’s a preview of the foyer, so where we can see some holo tables, some scanner parts, industrial hydraulic systems, for the transit area, with nothing too much on it. But the idea was to play with some industrial component, with some high-tech feeling and some small part of this engineering area.

PJ: What else have we got. So this, you know, depending on various areas that you’re in you’ll go through various security terminals or scanners, so again, this is coming up as sort of various props. These aren’t fully signed off but, the feel of them, design of them, the complexity of them, this is something that maybe you know, you stand in the middle of and it rotates around you and scans you. You have a couple of these in a row, so, be sort of like security or immigration, it’s got that kind of feel. If we move on to another area…

GS: So, here it’s more the feeling of technical and habitation area. We wanted to give so we refine some components of the engineering area but conflate with other colour codes and materials code,

PJ: So yeah, this is very similar to what we’ve already seen. It’s, from a sort of yellow we’ve got to a white, or a light grey, but now we’re in the technical area, the habitation area, you know we’re going to more plaid and interior basically, a little more, a little less industrial, a little less hostile, but again, still riffing off on this sort of exoskeleton scade, cage and then everything bolting on to it or into it so Gary is basically worked on the whole series of what do you call them? Variations, obviously we don’t just want a long corridor of the same panel, basically we’ve given the artists and you’ll see here a whole tonne of variations they can pick from and depending on what the Designers want to do in the level we’ll be able to sort of influence it with the pieces of art that we throw in.

GS: So we’ve seen the technical habitation so remembering some of the industry feeling that we found on the Engineering area so we can see sometimes on some wall some pipes appearing for maybe some control or checking in. So we have also some data and some more computer feeling also to have something more like a real technical area that combine industrial but also more advanced feeling. We have also this kind of panel that maybe helping advertising in Habitation Area so we have all this UI and graphics things that can contribute to give the feeling to be in a real Habitation Area

PJ: This isn’t our so this will be replaces to something

GS: Yes, it’s inspired by something existing but after the Graphic Artist will do also our own advertising keeping with Star Citizen spirit but as a first loop of the process we use some graphical image that seduce us then to modify it but its, giving the feeling of

PJ: It’d be nice to have like, it’d be nice to have. Obviously you’re going to have characters walking around but we want to go for the, we want. Any good game environment you want to have believability, you want to have multi layered reeds, so it’s not just the environment it’s effects, it’s advertising whatever it is. We’ll be able to could that we come out with some kind of branding that Shubin uses or some kind of company that they always use for their advertising so it’s always, could be always like could be a bit like work harder or more rocks more whatever it is more money kind of thing so we’ll be able to inject an extra level of personality to the environment.

GS: We have also created some researchable breaking the rhythm of the repetition corridor with creating some area that look totally different so there is some panel like Emergency or things like that, that could make or break into corridors.

PJ: Do you have, do you have that sheet where you got about eight, eight… ok we’ll get to that..

GS: So the final source some bays are for the wall panel and making some research how it could work what we can find graphically and also what kind of filament we can plug on this wall and so you see a little bit of the variation we have shown to you, there is more but we show an extract here

PJ: Pardon? What was that?

GS: So you can see here that, it’s essentially the same cross section but we’re always, we’re always looking to build on top of that and ultimately we’ll be able to build additional, here it’s essentially it’s a flat wall, not a flat wall but it’s linear through just swapping it out certain areas we’ll be able to push in or push out or add framework or create more interest but as an initial pass the Artist will build these block them out throw them in, see how it feels. But again they’ve got a good direction so we won’t be losing time on them trying to figure out materials or what the style guide is it’s all pretty clear so theoretically iteration should be a lot faster. This is an idea for breaking, obviously this is similar to what we saw on previous image except they were yellow but this huge shock absorber it’s punching through this floor piece and you’re going from a single to a double aim and just creating visual interest it’s not gameplay related it’s just for us, we want this to be an interesting place to walk around.

PJ: So we create all sorts of border like that, trying to define what would be the panel, the graphics thing, the area first globe but it helps to creating the different panel and different world variation so we work like that for the manufacturer of spaceship where we define the split line and things like that we do the same for environment.

GS: Yeah we could go on forever there’s a lot of content for Shubin. We’ve got quite a bit more to develop on this, but this gives you a good insight into what Gary’s been doing and where we’ve been pushing it. We hope you guys like it, thanks for watching.


SG: The first MVP of 2016 goes to the noobfier1337 for his video explaining the weapon and hardpoint system in the alpha 2.0, lets check out the video.

ER: That’s actually one of many really cool videos that we have all been watching over the christmas period. You guys do an absolutely fabulous job of just looking at what we do and you know, checking stuff out and actually giving us a bunch of ideas right back when we see, you know, the sort of work you guys do as well with us.

SG: And Erin and I are back next week, well hopefully we can entice Erin back next week but it wouldn’t be right to leave you without an art sneak peak. Check it out!

Sneak peek


SG: Be sure to tune into Reverse the ‘Verse at 11:00 am tomorrow on twitch where the guys back in Los Angeles will discuss that sneak peek and the events of last week.

ER: And as always thanks to the subscribers for making this show happen.

SG/ER: We’ll see you next week on Around the ‘Verse!

Contractor: Alright ready? After three, happy new year. Everybody slot arms and that sorta stuff…Ready? on three. ONE TWO THREE!

CIG Crowd: Yay!


Director of Transcripts

A polite Canadian who takes pride in making other peoples day brighter. He enjoys waffles with Maplesyrup, making delicious puns and striving for perfection in screaming at the T.V. during hockey games.