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Around the Verse: Vanduul Blade & Shops 'n Trade Written Thursday 17th of May 2018 at 12:00am by Sunjammer, Nehkara and

As per usual, anything said during the show is subject to change by CIG and may not always be accurate at the time of posting. Also any mistakes you see that I may have missed, please let me know so I can correct them. Enjoy the show!

TL;DR (Too Long; Didn't Read)

Project Update

  • Progress made on mining mechanics: VFXs for laser arc highlights, rock breakage levels, rock destruction; adjusting the look and feel of the tractor beam; tweaking the UIs, working on button interaction and keybindings

  • Implemented test cases to help teams get FPS AI working in the PU: revealing issues not apparent until the AI are placed in "real world" scenarios

  • Early VFX work done for several ships' death masks including the Aegis Avenger and the Anvil Hurricane

  • Working on ballistic weapon VFX improvements including a more natural muzzle flash and less intrusive tracers

  • Sound design being worked on for some FPS guns, e.g. the Gemini 55 and the Scalpel sniper rifle

  • Environmental work continues on the hangars: more areas in the greybox design phase; adding thematic panels for visual interest, AI interaction opportunities, and narrative choices; blocked in door animations

  • Working on biomes for Hurston and its moons: acid biome using the asset tinting; improved rock distribution; improving savannah biome’s trees and lighting; testing wind and detail bending

Shopping Kiosk

  • Item shopping kiosk is a in-world screen that the player can use in any shop to purchase items

  • Took inspiration from elements of the VMA, the PMA and the commodity kiosk system

  • Final implementation will not look like the VMA or PMA on the mobiGlas and will have additional flow

  • When using the kiosk the player's ship is preselected and items can be further filtered by item port e.g. coolers

  • Additional functionality includes displaying price and stats, comparison with owned items, and ability to buy/sell

  • Developed a branding system so the kiosk will reflect the shop's branding

  • When a player buys an item they can equip it immediately or store it in their "global inventory"

  • The kiosk is an important first step for the economy and will tie into mining, etc.

  • Future development will depend on the feedback from players and internal usability testing

Ship Shape

  • Ship shape will now be shorter and biweekly, rather than monthly.

  • Avenger re-work will be in 3.2 and has been undergoing EMP tweaks and work on cargo room LODs in addition to work on the livery.

  • The Origin 600i will also be in 3.2 and has undergone a lighting pass to the hub area.

Vanduul Blade

  • Blade is an agile light fighter with four size 2 guns and eight size 1 missiles.

  • Blade will be deployed by the Kingship.

  • The main landing gear deploys out of a section of folding ribs on the underside.

  • The look is organic and features a lot of spikes as well as a red pulsing glow.

  • Cockpit controls are all holographic.

  • Entry into the Blade is similar to the Scythe.

  • Vanduul tend to not invent their technology but rather scavenge from other races, and are adept at understanding how things work and integrating them with their systems.

  • Basic foundation for most of their tech is a biological-looking mesh that holds everything together.  It is made from resources scraped from worlds via their Harvester ships.

  • Instead of building out (adding pieces on), the Vanduul build inward by creating a shell and then placing pieces inside of it and then holding everything together with the mesh.

  • Vanduul look was changed somewhat as they want to be able to have huge fleets on screen at any given time and the old style was very expensive to render.

  • They will take the style for the Blade and work backwards to slightly update the Driller and then apply the look to the entire rest of the Vanduul fleet.

Full Transcript

Intro With Chris Roberts (CEO, Director of Star Citizen and Squadron 42), Sandi Gardiner (VP of Marketing). Timestamped Link.

Sandi Gardiner (SG): Hello and welcome to another episode of Around the Verse. I’m Sandi Gardiner.

Chris Roberts (CR): And I’m Chris Roberts.

SG: This week Jared’s back with an installment of Ship Shape on the Vanduul Blade.

CR: Yes and we’ll see what’s in store for the immediate future of shopping kiosks - I know you all want to know - but first let’s go once again to Ricky Jutley for this week’s Star Citizen Project Update.

SG: Yes let’s take a look at where we are on the road map and what the devs have been up to.

Project Update With Ricky Jutley (Producer). Timestamped Link.

Ricky Jutley (RJ): Thanks guys. Let’s get things started and take a look at the roadmap.

More progress has been made on the mining mechanic. Larser arc highlights are in and working but the VFXs are just placeholders and will be replaced once new tech is complete. Right now we have three levels of breakage for rocks; with a fourth still to be added. And we’re still tinkering with the physics to get them just right. Rock destruction VFX work is also ongoing, with work being done on specific states like “in progress mining”, “safe mining”, and “incorrect/dangerous mining”. Again the visuals here will be replaced with new tech once it’s available so the beam you’re seeing isn’t the finished article. Implementing feedback from Chris Roberts, we’ve been adjusting the way the tractor beam looks and acts, as well as making further tweaks to the scanning and mining UIs which will be finalised onced the Prospector’s boom arm is complete. It has been determined that your weapons will be offline while in “mining mode” due to the power allocation. And we’re still working on the button interaction and keybindings that will switch and control the modes.

Test cases are being implemented to help various teams get FPS AI working in the PU. In this example you see the AI running on a server with an outpost being used as the test level.  As you can see the AI don’t behave as expected due to many factors that do not become apparent until they are placed in real world scenarios such as running over a network, or being within the zone of a rotating planet. These levels highlight issues like this and provide teams a testbed to work more rapidly on fixes.

Early VFX work has been done on the death masks for several ships. Here you see first damage pass effects for the Aegis Avenger rework. And damage effects are being worked on for several other ships including the Anvil Hurricane. That’s some pretty cool explosions. This team has also been working on ballistic weapon VFX improvements including a more natural muzzle flash and less intrusive tracers as seen here with submachine guns.

And sound design is being worked on for some of the FPS guns planned for Alpha 3.2 - like the Gemini 55 and the Scalpel sniper rifle.

Environmental work continues on the hangars that you’ll be seeing in the various space stations with more areas in the greybox design phase - such as the drone bays seen here. We’ve also been adding thematic panels to add visual interest and open up opportunities for interesting AI interactions and narrative choices in these locations. Finally door animations have been blocked in which add nice dramatic touches.

Work continues on the planet Hurston with its multiple biomes being visually developed and tested; and its landing zone, Lorville, really starting to come together. Here we see on an acidic biome: the asset tinting applied here - as seen in last week’s update - really helps this biome allowing less assets to do more. And the distribution of rocks continues to be improved. Also some visual tweaks are being made to the sulphur pools that dominate this environments.

And here are some work in progress renderings of a savannah biome with trees and lighting getting some attention. This area is also being used as a testing ground for wind and detail bending. You can see the visual and geographic diversity that’s being developed for Hurston and its moons beginning to take shape.

Finally we get more glimpses of the Hurston trash biome. If any of the sets really represent the environmentally compromised planet it’s definitely the trash biome.   

As Lorville’s visual development continues the environment art team is putting together these prototypes for artistic direction, mood, and to show what VFXs will be needed.

That’s all for this week. We’ll see you next time for more PU progress. Back to you in the studio.

Back to Studio With Chris Roberts (CEO, Director of Star Citizen and Squadron 42), Sandi Gardiner (VP of Marketing). Timestamped Link.

CR: Thanks Ricky. So we’ll have more PU updates in the coming weeks and you can always follow along with the roadmap - week to week - on the RSI website.

SG: One of the features set for Alpha 3.2 that we’ve been tracking on the roadmap these last few weeks is Item Kiosk Shopping.

CR: Yes as you’ve seen in previous project updates the functionality, UI, and visual presentation of the kiosk continues evolve. Let’s see where the teams are on this system, which will open up the ability to purchase a lot more items than we have room for in some of our stores; what’s planned for 3.2’s release; and beyond in this week’s feature.

Shopping Kiosk With Karl Jones (Lead Systems Designer), Zane Bien (Global UI Creative Director), Hugo Silva (Senior UI Programmer), Mark White (Production Assistant). Timestamped Link.

Karl Jones (KJ): So right now we’re working on shopping kiosk. And what’s that going to be is that’s an in-world screen that the player can walk up to - in any shop and location - and actually purchase items from that shop.

Hugo Silva (HS): For the item kiosk work we actually took some inspiration from the VMA and PMA. We started adding those systems in terms of displaying items - displaying the ship items - and giving the option to select the items that we wish to research. We took, of course, some notes from the commodity kiosk system that we currently have. And adding those two systems to one step actually showing the characters loadout and also the vehicle loadout, and presenting with items that we available in that store for that particular - let’s say - cooler, or engine, or missile that we want to browse.

KJ: By the time we’ve finished the implementation it’s not going to look like the PMA or the VMA on the mobiGlas. It’ll obviously have a complete reskin. There’ll be additional flow.

HS: When trying to explain how the VMA and PMA actually work is that we have a request - the user makes a request. We going into what we call our “persistency”. We make a request for - let’s say player number one requests the items that he has on his vehicle number one. And the server will return to us a bunch of items that belong to that vehicle - to that character - and we then, with those items … well we basically need to transform the data and make it presentable for the user in a really nice way.

How this applies to the item kiosk is let’s say a player goes into a store. He has his Gladius preselected. He goes into the store and and he wants to see which items apply to Gladius. Let’s say he picks a cooler. Player will need to request to persistency “I want to see every cooler that works on my Gladius for this ship”. And the server will return to us all the items and then we have the data that we can then present to the player in a nice way in the item kiosk shops.

We already have a dynamic platform that we can use to create loadouts may they be for, let’s say, a character, or be a ship, or a ground vehicle, or something like that. We can reuse these systems to actually load in, let’s say, items that we have available in a store.

So going through that steps of following some systems that we already have in place would be the easiest step to actually getting a new system up.

Zane Bien (ZB): So essentially the user interface is an extension of the personal manager and vehicle manager where their navigation scheme is largely the same, however there’s some key differences that we need to take into account for the shops. So, for instance, displaying price, factoring stats and the comparison functionality, as well as the flow for just purchasing in general. And selling.

So in terms of the actual skinning of the UI we’ve worked on a branding system where this kiosk can be in multiple different shops and what we want to have is the actual branding being reflected on the kiosk but in a way that it’s scaleable for us. So if there’s 20/30 shops, 50 different shops, 100 different shops we can just slot in different branding and styles that will make a big impact on the experience.

HS: We are trying a new kind of presentation for these item kiosk shops. The user will go to the item kiosk he will preselect like, “I want to buy items”. He will have, for example, his ship loaded in automatically. He will then get to pick the item port that he wants to actually make a purchase for, let’s say, a cooler. He will then see the one he has equipped on that vehicle. And then he will see a list of items that are available on the store. Every time he clicks an item on the store he will get to see, like, statistics for that item; how that item compares to the one he has equipped; and also the availability of to buy that item - to actually buy it and equip it to the ship or to actually just buy it and store it somewhere and do whatever he wants to do with it.  

KJ: The first thing you’ll do on a shopping kiosk is you’ll choose whether you want to buy something or whether you want to sell something. ‘Cause the sell functionality is going to be important for us going forward as well.

HS: The player could actually go to a store. Let’s say he finds a sweet deal on, let’s say, a couple of missiles and he says like, “Okay I have this couple of missiles but I don’t want to equip them right now in my ship. Let me just store them somewhere … “ - in something we call the global inventory - “ … and let me just keep there for a couple of days or so until I actually need that.”

KJ: The shopping kiosk is obviously important for immersion and allowing the player to access some of the things - that are currently outside of the game - in the game. In fiction. But it’s also important for … as one of the big first steps for the economy. Certain shops in certain locations are going to sell items that potentially made from materials that are local. So this is going to tie into the mining system and everything. So a particular weapon is made from a particular metal that is minalbe locally so that’s going to be in abundance at this location. But it also … it might mean that they’re cheap there but it also means that maybe you can’t get them elsewhere where that material isn’t minable. And then, obviously, the knockons there are if I go and buy some stuff from there I could potentially sell it where it’s rare. The economy side of things really kicks off when we start to look at supply and demand of things like that to that level.

ZB: So where we’re at right now is we’ve had our initial sign off on the general flow and the functionality that we mocked up in our prototype. So it may not be perfect off the bat, but it helps us to … as artists and as engineers to visualise what are the exact requirements, how is this thing supposed to work, and how’s it … how does the … how’s it flow?

Mark White (MW): It’s all about giving players options. It’s speeding up gameplay effectively. It means they don’t have to spend forever looking through different menus. And it also really helps the new players. So someone new to the game might not know they have to physically buy something, go to a different app in the mobiGlas, equip it that way. With this item kiosk they know “I’ve bought this thing. I’m equipping it to this spot. And it’s done.” And it’s all simple and easy for them to use.

ZB: So this release will have our first iteration of the item shop kiosk.  It will be reflective of our prototyping, our art and implementation but it will be the first pass.

MW: So right now we’re at the step where you can purchase items and it goes into your global inventory. We’ve also go the system working so you can select an item port and it shows the weapons/stuff to buy. Next up for us is to get the shop items and what you own side by side in a list so that way see “This is what I own. This is what I’ll be replacing. And this is what my options are.”

ZB: In terms of future development we will take a look at the feedback that comes through from the playerbase testing the UI and our internal usability testing as well. So future development will have future iterations … there’ll be things that we want to adjust and tweak in terms … in order to optimise flow and the experience in general. So there are things that we can’t really foresee now and most of the time that is the case but we’ve gone as far as we can in the time that we’ve had allotted. And we have a solution that we think will work well but it really comes down to how is the … how does … how is the player ultimately going to experience this.

HS: Where we’re currently at - is probably the most exciting part - is we have base functionality already working. So a person can go into a shop and actually see the items, can actually buy them, and stay with them - it already makes the call to persistency. The fun part now comes with we are starting to reskin the item kiosk so instead of having that look and feel of VMA and PMA they’re going to have their distinct feel of like, “Okay this is an item kiosk.” It’s going to have theming in terms of stores. It’s going to have slightly different layout than the VMA, than the PMA. It’s going to be familiar enough that players know how to use it but it’s going to be a little bit different not to just reuse assets. It’s going to be unique so to speak.

Back to Studio With Chris Roberts (CEO, Director of Star Citizen and Squadron 42), Sandi Gardiner (VP of Marketing). Timestamped Link.

SG: Thanks guys. With the Alpha 3.2 not far away we’ll see further improvements to the shopping kiosks in upcoming project updates.

CR: Yes, it’s always a work in progress - so to speak - we have a whole bunch of stuff that we need to do so 3.2 is going to have the basics but we’ll to continue to improve in 3.3 and onwards ‘cause shopping kiosk will be one way we’ll be able to allow you to purchase a lot of items that we may not always have shop space/floor space for. So it’ll always be a combination. So 3.2 will be the first time you’ll have a kiosk that you can actually buy larger items that we let you buy in most of the shops now. And … but it’s a lot work.

Also due out with 3.2 is the Vanduul Blade. Let’s go to Jared Huckaby for another installment of Ship Shape taking a look at this menacing fighter.

Ship Shape With Jared Huckaby (Community Manager), Geoff Coffin (Senior QA Tester), Robin Karlsson (Junior 3D Vehicle Artist), Michal Kozlowski (Senior 3D Vehicle Artist). Timestamped Link.

Jared Huckaby (JH): Greetings citizens, and welcome to an all-new edition of Ship Shape where we take a look at what's making its way down the ship pipeline towards release into the Star Citizen universe.

I'm your host Content Manager Jared Huckaby.

Now, you might be asking yourself, “Hey, I thought Ship Shape was a monthly thing,” - well it was but as with many things, the only constant in video game development is change. So, we're gonna be trying something new here over the next couple episodes with a shorter, more refined biweekly format.

So, what does that mean for you guys? Well, it means you'll still get the same Ship Shape content that you would have gotten throughout the remainder of 2018, we're just gonna chop them up into smaller and more digestible portions so you don't have to wait as long between updates. I know... you want ships, I got shapes. It's not my best metaphor.

On today's division of Ship Shape, we'll be sitting down with some of the team members in our Wilmslow, United Kingdom studio who've been working to bring the sleek Vanduul Blade to life. Let's get started by taking a look.

Ship Shape: The Vanduul Blade

Geoff Coffin (GC):  The Blade is a small single-seat fighter. It's kind of like the Scythe but smaller. Whereas the Scythe has a couple of size five guns, the Blade actually has four size two guns instead. It's just a little bit smaller, a little bit more easily destroyed, but at the same time it's still got a vicious punch that you'd expect from the Vanduul.  Essentially it's the Vanduul equivalent of the Gladius.

Robin Karlsson (RK):  So the Vanduul Blade it's a very agile single-seat fighter with four weapon mounts of size two gun turrets and eight size 1 missiles on top.  It’s a multi-purpose fighter really, it's just one of the smaller Vanduul ships that are supposed to be coming out of the bigger ships - gets deployed by the Kingship. The idea behind the Blade’s landing mechanism is that the wings fold in towards via cockpit and then there's a panel that pops off underneath the wing itself on both sides and then acts the landing gear and in the back there’s the ribs which just fold out and reveal the main landing gear in the back which just acts as a counterbalance to the rest of it as otherwise it would just tip over.

The Blade otherwise is very curvy, similar to the other Vanduul ships. There are curves sweeping in and out of each other. We have lots of the animated elements and some biomechanical influences like from HR Giger.

GC:  It's fast and aggressive as Vanduul ships tend to be. It's also got a fairly interesting profile where it's almost shaped like the batwing. It's got this little U-shaped curve to it. Basically it's just a fast, aggressive ship. It's not particularly durable but you know it's a bad guy ship - you're supposed to blow it up.

RK:  Some of the organic elements - it glows, it pulses continuously throughout the ship to give it a lot more live and then there are some animated ribs that open up to reveal the landing gear.

GC:  I don't want to call the profile sinister but definitely it's nothing that humans particularly design their ships for.  In addition to this, it's got the sort of accoutrements you'd expect from the Vanduul - it's got like little spiked blades on the front of its wings, it's got some spikes on the back of the wings where they're like vents just poking out the back, four little spikes coming out of it. It's a spiky, evil, sinister-looking ship with red glowing lights all over it. I mean, very clearly you look at it and you’re like, “That’s a bad guy ship.”

RK: The interior of a Blade is very organic and feels similar to be exterior - the same kind of basic curves going everywhere.  It's bit more intricate as it's an interior and it needs to be. The dashboard is completely hologram based except for the joysticks to steer the ship, everything else is just holographic which gives it a bit of a distinct look from the rest of the ships. Some other ships are rather similar with lots of holographic - I think the Vanduul style pushes that a bit further.

GC:  One of the main things is how you get into the ship. With the Vanduul ships you have the seat which is kind of on a runner and the hatch will pop down and the seat will slide down to you and you grab onto the seat and it'll pop back up again taking you with it. The Blade has exactly the same thing where even though the ship’s smaller, we're trying to keep it the same metrics.  So, it’ll come down, you'll get into it, you'll be able to go up and you'll sort of rest on this seat rather sitting down in a seat in the ship.

In addition to that, the cockpit area is… I don't want call it Spartan, but I'm going to call it Spartan. There aren't - it's not got loads of screens in there like you'd see with a lot of other ships. The Vanduul kind of have like little holo projectors which will which display your information for you and it's not cluttered up with lots of screen stuff. It's cluttered up with evil bad guy stuff so you know there's evil vents and pipes and stuff everywhere but, you know, that's fine.

It's also got a similar flowing organic feel to the structure between the glass panels. So, rather than having hard angles, it's all smooth curves which again fits in with that Vanduul design philosophy.

Michal Kozlowski (MK):  We did follow the lore of Vanduul quite closely and we actually developed some new ideas while working on it - how do they actually make their technology? Where does it come from? How does it run? How is it put together?

That's quite an interesting way of looking at Vanduul. I think trying to move away from portraying them as those mindless just warrior-like frenzied creatures and then put some intelligence and some interesting aspects of the culture that make them maybe a little bit more… I don’t know… I wouldn’t say sophisticated but definitely not mindless and quite intelligent and purposeful in what they want to achieve.

They are scavengers. They don't create their technology, they absorb other race’s technology and make do what they want with it. So, they are really really capable in understanding how stuff works and making stuff work for them by modifying it and like combining stuff together. Obviously they are not - like the visual aspects of their stuff - they don't care about that stuff… like they don't have art, they don't have, you know, pop culture or anything like that they’re just out there to basically conquer and absorb and assimilate and just be stronger. That's why their weapons - they don't necessarily have a consistent style per se as you can very often see some other races and some other technologies inside. For example, see a weapon that has a laser emitter that's clearly based on Banu technology. You can see completely different lines, completely different styles than what you would call Vanduul style. You can see some human stuff in there because, for example, there was a battery or a generator that they really really - you know, they looked at it, they reversed engineered it and connected it to some other stuff and, you know, it works and if it works that that's already happy about it.

Everything is put together using some sort of biomechanical… I call it paste but it's basically this is like all the resources that they scraped and refined from the planets they conquered. They use those ships called Harvesters, they just set them down and they just basically take everything and refine it and they create - I don't think it's silicon. I don't know if we actually really know what it is, but it's very very strong and and it has this kind of biological look to it and they basically put whatever the weapon they wanted - they put it together and then they stick everything with almost like an outer framing so it don't doesn't fall apart. So, that's like their equivalent of our I would say welding so all the weapons and a lot of their tech is surrounded by this biological mesh or biological structure or framing around so basically it's sturdy and sticks together and you can actually use it.

When I was talking to Dave Haddock, our director of narrative, about it because when we create stuff I don't personally like to create stuff in vacuum I like to have explanation for everything - something that came up which I really really like is this idea of Vanduul, they don't build outwards like humans would. So, a human is going to get a component and attach another component on top of it and an another component and it's kind of growing outwards. What the Vanduul like to do is they create a shell, a volume, and they put stuff inside of it. So almost building inwards, that's on the interiors you can see a lot of weird pillars coming in and holding stuff together in the middle and they kind of work like that.

As people have seen, the Vanduul changed quite drastically in looks. We had this very very noisy, very very grungy almost a scrapyard look to them initially and that was how the first wave of the concept art and a lot of the models was created a few years ago. There wasn't necessarily anything very wrong with it, other than it was incredibly inefficient and incredibly expensive to run. We wanted to have massive fleets and that's our goal - to be able to run a lot of those ships at the same time, almost swarm-like formations, so we had to really really cut down on polygons.

When Matt and Colin a couple of years ago created the Vanduul Driller, the big carrier of the Vanduul fleet, and the new style was much more organic and smooth curves. We followed that with other ships and we had to rebuild all the other ships according to that and that also affected weapons. You can see the old style of Vanduul weapons on the some of the ships that are currently in PU and you can currently fly like the Scythe and Glaive.

RK: Tried to balance all the smooth curves will be more spiky aggressive shapes. There was also also the issue of scale where there isn’t really that much you can can use to get the scale reference for it. There is the cockpit of course with the glass windows but other than that there's not much you can really gauge scale by.

GC: One of the things with the redesign was at one point there was some experimentation with getting a real room where you could get out of the seat and walk around the back of it, but at that point the ship started getting a bit too big - it was starting to approach the size of the Scythe - and obviously being a light fighter that was making it too big, so that got scrapped and it got scaled back down again a little bit. Essentially the core of the ship has stayed the same for all of the different iterations.

MK: The Blade is still it's one of the last ships we've made. It has a lot of the ideas. What we want to do now is we want to kind of go back again from Blade to Driller to get all those ideas and then expand them over the whole fleet again just to add a few more things. Blade has a little bit of that. We want to create a few more common bundle visual elements and maybe add to it a little bit later and add to other ships but it's probably the closest one - the closest ship right now - to what we actually want the Vanduul to look like but it might change a little bit visually in the future obviously like anything else is bound to change. We reserve the right to change the stuff, it's definitely not final. We'll see what works - it's a very iterative process, especially when you're working on the whole fleet almost at the same time which is kind of what I'm tasked to do.

GC: As a bit of light fighter, it's gonna go in fast, it's going to fire a lot of guns, it's going to harry smaller targets. You might use multiple of them in conjunction if you've got like a bigger ship to try and pepper it and take it down so something else can come in and strike the killing blow on larger targets. It'll be your general-purpose dog's body for a fleet. It'll fight wherever you want it to and it'll general give them a bit of a bad time.

Back to Jared

JH: Now... I heard it. A few of you scoffed at the line, “It's like a Vanduul version of the Gladius,” remark but let me tell ya... a while back when we were doing those Electronic Access invitationals here across the studios, my boy Vinny Sinatra in the QA department was mowing through the rest of us so quickly he didn't even bother to take the names and what ship was he flying? The Gladius. Now, that’s one of the most exciting aspects of Star Citizen's continuing development. That finding an effective mix between pilot and ship. Ships like the Gladius and the Blade can seem underwhelming at times to folks like me who need every single advantage they can get on the battlefield in order to not, you know, embarrass themselves. But for those at the top of their game and for anyone that values speed or maneuverability over raw firepower, ships like these too often end up being just as devastating as any other. The Vanduul Blade is scheduled to enter the Persistent Universe in the upcoming Alpha 3.2.

Now, also coming in that very same Alpha 3.2, let's do a quick update on two ships currently making their way through the pipeline. First, the Aegis Avenger rework. In progress now, it continues its development with EMP tweaks, work on the cargo room LODs, and this look at the work being done on the Avenger renegade livery. While the team working to bring the stylish Origin 600i to life are making progress with the captain’s quarters as well as a lighting pass to what's being referred to internally as the hub area. Now, still with plenty of work left to do on both these ships, it's exciting to see them moving closer than ever before to their intended release into the Star Citizen universe with next month's Alpha 3.2 content patch.

And that my friends is what we have for you this episode but don't worry because I'm gonna be back once again at the end of this month with updates on even more Star Citizen ships, more Star Citizen spaceship stuff, and more well… everything that will make Star Citizen the best damn space sim ever. For Ship Shape, I’m Jared Huckaby - I'll see you in two weeks everybody.

Outro With Chris Roberts (CEO, Director of Star Citizen and Squadron 42), Sandi Gardiner (VP of Marketing). Timestamped Link.

SG: Thanks Jared! Always fun to get a look at alien ships

CR: Yes, it definitely is and as our designers have really locked in on the style of the Vanduul, their ships are becoming very distinct and very threatening and cool-looking.

SG: Threatening… For more Jared tune into Reverse the ‘Verse live tomorrow at 9:00 a.m. PDT and if you missed it on Monday, check out Calling All Devs for more Q&A.

CR: Yes because that also have Jared on it and you can never have enough Jared. Anyway, so big thanks to all our subscribers for sponsoring the shows, giving us this platform to share the development process with all of you.

SG: Tickets to CitizenCon are still available and we couldn't be more excited to share the development process with you in person with a full day of developer presentations and interactions.

CR: Yeah. Well, after last year being successful we're going to expand the format and it’s going to be bigger and cooler than before - like basically the UK ship department and all the ships they ever do - and it's gonna be at the Long Center in Austin, Texas which is also a very cool venue. So, we have a lot of fun in store and can't wait to see hopefully a bunch of you there in October.

SG: For our latest concept ship, the Hercules Starlifter from Crusader Industries, we have a short story contest running to give all of you aspiring lore makers out there a chance to craft your own Hercules adventure and win one for your fleet.

CR: Bet you can't say that too fast.

SG: I know, seriously.

CR: It's gonna be fun to see all of the creative uses the community comes up with for the ship. It was always fun seeing what people could do with their Cutlass on 3.0 so imagine what it is on a ship as big as the Hercules. And also, thanks to everyone who participated in our Intel screenshot contest these last few weeks. Congratulations - winner Hasgaha, NarayanN7, and Captain_Raoul who all took home their own Intel Optane solid state drives by capturing and sharing some spectacular in-game shots. I have to say outside of the three winners, there are some amazing shots in the whole screenshot contest. Every one of the series, I think there was three rounds, had… I mean it was really hard - for me personally - to pick and I think a lot of the people here at CIG felt exactly the same way, so I would say people that haven't gone to the screenshot contest-

SG: Check it out on Spectrum!

CR: Check it out on Spectrum, because the in-game photography that people are doing is amazing

SG: And that's all for this week. Thank you to all of our backers for making this possible. Until next time, we will see you...

Both: Around the Verse!



For whatever reason, this author doesn't have a bio yet. Maybe they're a mystery. Maybe they're an ALIEN. Maybe they're about to get a paddlin' for not filling one out. Who knows, it's a myyyyyyystery!



Writer and inhabitant of the Star Citizen subreddit.