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Around the ‘Verse – Episode 49 Written Thursday 18th of June 2015 at 12:02pm by Nehkara

Hello there fellow Citizens! Check here for our coverage of the 49th episode of Around the ‘Verse! Around the ‘Verse   Sneak Peek Two versions, choose which you prefer!   Images/GIFs http://i.imgur.com/WAp5pJk.webm http://i.imgur.com/vD4OYFL.webm http://i.imgur.com/f7VIEfw.webm  ...

Hello there fellow Citizens! Check here for our coverage of the 49th episode of Around the ‘Verse!

Around the ‘Verse


Sneak Peek

Two versions, choose which you prefer!




Transcript by Erris

Empire Report

– Peace talks on Charon collapse.

– Ship Insurance scams reach an all-time high.

– Hawksworth’s haute-couture causes controversy.


Around the ‘Verse

– Ben is flying Solo this week.

– Vanduul are everywhere at CIG this week – we got looks at the Void heavy bomber (carries torpedoes and boarding ships) and there’ll be more Vanduul ships to see in the coming weeks.

– Where is Star Marine? – Still no date. They’re working very hard on it, and now additional resources from around the company, including the new programmers in Germany, are working to try to get the netcode up and running and out the door.

– Keep checking comm-links, hoping to go to PTU in the not too distant future.

– CR is still in the UK working on mo-cap and p-cap shoots.

– E3 week in LA. CIG has been walking the floor to see some cool titles.

– Chris couldn’t make it to E3, but he sent along a video message for the PCGamer PCGaming panel (video airs)

(Check The Relay’s coverage of the E3 video including many images of a variety of Vanduul ships)

– CitizenCon 2015 tickets went on sale, and already sold out. Events will be awesome, event will be October 10th in Manchester (The Relay will be there). The con will be shared with everyone else via livestream.

News from the Spectrum

6:00 – Santa Monica – Darian Vorlick and Travis Day

– Preparing for Alpha 1.2.0 release of SC. Preparations of that include a full balance pass on all the weapons, all the items, all the missiles. All the feedback they’ve collected, there will be a full top to bottom rebalance pass.

– Also adjustments to physically based damage.

– UI designer Zane Bien is working on the HUD for the Vanduul Scythe.

– GOST (Game Object State system) – working on how to integrate that into the lighting system. If you’re in a Tali, once you get to a certain level of damage, warning lights will go off. If the damage gets critical, warning sirens and exit lights will turn on, pointing towards escape pods, etc…

– When you open a door or you power on a vehicle, certain lights will turn on.

– You walk into a room, and it sequentially turns on the lights as you walk through it, then turns them off again. All this sort of stuff is being integrated in with GOST.

– Little things that add extra realistic ambiance.

8:15 – Illfonic – David Langeliers.

– New grenades are being built. Can’t go into details of the functionality, but they’ve started work on three new grenades, on the art-side. Building high-poly meshes and such. We’ll find out about functionality in the coming weeks.

– Network optimization. Recently, with the item port system, there have been problems. Anything over 8 players was causing a lot of problems with players switching weapons and lagging out. Wormbyte helped out doing some profiling, found a cap in the default CryEngine network code that was throwing out packets once they were hitting the limit. After getting rid of that cap, they’ve been able to have some successful tests with more people online.

– Aiming down the sight on weapon – first and third person shared animations. One of the things that had to be done when fine tuning how all the guns aim down the sites, since everything is animation based, first they pulled out those animations and had them in just numbers, so designers could tweak how fast the gun comes up, how much recoil is on the gun, etc…

– Once they got those how they wanted, the animation team brought the animations back into the game and made them match up to the values the designers put in. That’s a lot of the work that’s going in now.

10:55 – Austin – Jake Ross and Emre Switzer

– Emre is joining from Milwaukee, finished his first week at CIG.

– He got involved with the CryEngine modding community in 2011, somewhere along the way he heard about Star Citizen. Got involved with it, started following the progress, noticed there was a position for a lighting artist, then he did some mod work, put it on reddit, it made it to the front page there, and some people saw it, liked it, got invited over to the studio, did an art test, and then got the job.

– First week he’s been working on getting stuff set up. On Wednesday he started working on Gold Horizon, which will ship in 1.2. So his work will be visible very soon.

– He’s doing an optimization run on all the lighting, doing a PBR run, making sure everything looks accurate.

14:10 – UK – Eddie Hilditch and Nicholas Etheridge

– World builders working on Shubin. They oversee levels, work with the design and levels, work with budgets and optimization etc… Asset builders build bricks, world builders build houses.

– They’re working on Shubin, which is huge. 6 km long mining station, and you can fly down to meter scale FPS areas, lots of landing pads on Shubin, more than 9, around 20? There’s the FPS level detail when you go down to the landing pads. There are vast areas on the interior as well, all seamless with no loading.

– Windows, stairs, lights, those things give a sense of scale to us, and give a sense of the massiveness of the Shubin station.

– Sounds like right now you can fly up to Shubin, land, and walk into the interior.

15:35 – Meridian Transit

– Sol System



– Are we ever going to talk about these postcards?

– And now, over to Pugh…. (ouch, Ben, ouch)


James Pugh with Gaige Hallman.

(Note: In the images shown in this segment, we see that there are 353,000 polygons in the Scythe)

JP – Thanks Ben, I’m here with Associate 3D artist, Gaige Hallman. Gaige, how you doing man?

GH – I’m doing good.

JP – Thanks for coming on.

GH – Yup.

JP – So what exactly does an associate 3D artist do?

GH – We do a lot of things. We usually take over tasks from hired artists and kind of handle the overflow. So we’re more of generalists for this company. In the past I’ve done some proxy rigs for the Vanduul, and then just handled cleanup and bugs, and now I’m handling internal damages.

JP – So it’s kind of like you have your own work and then another artist has something they need help with and they come to you guys?

GH – They just dump it on us, and we take care of it.

JP – Didn’t we see you on TNGS?

GH – Yeah, I was on team Shimapan.

JP – How was that experience?

GH – It was crazy. I was a full time student, and I was also graduating at the time it was going on, so it was just… a crazy time. But it was good.

JP – So the hectic nature of TNGS, has that helped you with the hectic nature of what goes on around here?

GH – I would say that, but at the same time I don’t think I’ll ever go through something like that again. Because I was just… no schedule should ever be like that.

JP – What was it like?

GH – Kind of like working two full time jobs.

JP – What’s this job like?

GH – One and a half full time jobs.

JP – Perfect, knew you were going there. So what exactly are you working on right now?

GH – Like I said before I’m doing the Scythe, and I basically build out the internal structure for that ship. And then I’ve worked on doing and assisting with UV’s, which shows what layers of the ship can be burned through and then the things underneath, and I’m basically doing the first pass on that.

JP – So who else aside from you is working on the Scythe?

GH – It’s me and two other people mostly, Patrick Selerno, he’s been doing most of the UV setup, and transferring those, and then Kirk Tomes has been doing the game setup.

JP – Does the Scythe present any interesting challenges other ships don’t, particularly the human ships?

GH – I would say so, because it’s a lot more organic in design, and chaotic. You’ll see in the upcoming Vanduul ships, the internals and the design, the way the ship functions is basically nonsensical in a sense, but it still makes sense. It’s kind of like an old 80’s action movie where things are sort of kit-bashed together, whereas the human ships are way more planned and sort of clean, and the Vanduul gives you much more interesting stuff to work with.

JP – How long you working on the Vanduul Scythe?

GH – I think now it’s been about two weeks?

JP – Two weeks? And did you get brought on by other people, did they kind of bring you together as a team?

GH – Yeah sort of, we’ll kind of hop back and forth on things cause we’ll have multiple things in the pipeline, so, basically I’ll be working on one thing and then somebody finishes up their thing for the Scythe, they can hand it off, I can take over that, and hand it off, and we just go back and forth till it works.

JP – So as you’re gearing towards the end of the Scythe and as we’re trying to finish that up, where do you see your little touches or if you do at all?

GH – Really it’d be in the design of the internal structure, which I would like to be proud of, but it’s just the first pass, so concept has been going down the pipe for new internals, like a fleshed out structure, so that’ll take over what I’m doing, but right now this’ll lay the base for what’s going in.

JP – Was it exciting to kind of get to set how the internals of a Vanduul ship would look?

GH – It was, it was fun to figure out, to try and figure out what would be different, but I was kind of limited because I had to use assets from the previous damages, which were human, so I had to sort of distort those in a way.

JP – So that’s interesting. You had to take damages from the human ships and kind of adapt them?

GH – I had to work with all those old textures and materials and stuff like that, without creating new ones, to keep it efficient. So it was a challenge.

JP – I imagine that you change some of them a little bit because it’s so organic like and it’s a different ship, it has to break different right?

GH – And there was a lot of discussion about completely redoing the way Vanduul materials work, and the way they would build their structures, maybe a more cellular design, but we couldn’t really do that in this early stage so… later it’ll probably come.

JP – That’d be interesting, if instead of things breaking apart they just kind of dent in and it feels more like you’re being bruised instead of broken, but…

GH – That would be totally possible but… not yet.

JP – Well, thanks so much for coming on thanks for taking the time to come talk to us, and we’re all really excited to see the Scythe and the other Vanduul ships.

GH – I am too.

JP – Alright, back to you Ben!



– Thanks James, I guess you could say you gauged him to be a pretty good 3D artist… *someone swearing in the background*


Ship Shape, with Lisa Ohanian

– Anvil Aerospace

– Anvil was founded in 2772 in Terra.

– Known for its relationship with the UEE military, and makes a lot of their ships.

– THe company currently has factories on three dozen UEE worlds.

– The Hornet has destroyed more enemy hardware than all other navy spaceships combined.

– Style Guide

– Tells about the Anvil brand.

– Page 1 contains marketing information, logo, tagline, flavour text, where they fall in the ‘spectrum’ (more military based). Also information on colour pallette, and some products they’ve created.

– Working on the Crucible.

– Second page of the style guide has inspiration images, callouts, regarding the shape of the cockpit, the snub nose, etc…

– Also an image of the Gladiator.

24:45 – Meridian Transit

– Castra System.



– Thanks Lisa, now here’s a segment I think you’ll all find a little bit in-Zane…

– Because it’s Zane talking about the Vanduul HUD.


Zane Bien

Hi my name is Zane, I’m a UI designer here at CIG, and today I want to take you through my design process in creating the Vanduul UI. It’s a cool little project I did to make the Vanduul ships and while you’re flying it feel very unique and alien, so lets dive into it.

The goal with this is I wanted to try to make the UI, the shape language of the UI, a very aggressive shape. WHen you look at it it feels very organic and you have these aggressive shapes. What I did here was to kind of make everything kind of flow into the center of the HUD, so you have all of these different pointy spiky crazy shapes all going into the center, as if it’s targeting on to something and focusing on a specific point. So you try to get these kinds of nice, sharp, almost tribal shapes with the Vanduul, cause that’s something that Chris likes with the Vanduul language at least is kind of the tribal look, the tribal feel to it.

With these elements up here you can see they’re repeating, I tried to take some of the cues from some of the ships where you have a lot of repeating shape to them and tried to bring that into the UI somewhat. I think it compliments it pretty well.

So in this particular design here we have two components that I’m displaying simultaneously. One component is the visor, and this is kind of the elements on the outer edges, and the center here will be mapped to the physical fixed HUD in the cockpit.

What I considered when designing this is that this actually isn’t going to be shown all the time. What’s going to happen is that the UI will boot in when you get into the Vanduul ship, then it will glitch out to the Human UI, so you’re not going to see this design all the time when you’re flying.

I wanted to be a little more gratuitous with how much screen real estate that this UI takes up. I wasn’t too worried about how cluttered, or how much it’s going to impede on your vision, cause it’s only going to be there in specific events, like boot-up, as well as when you get hit. And when you get hit it’s actually going to glitch out a bit.

So I wanted to get these ships, make it very obvious, so when you get hit you can actually sort of see it, you know, see some of the alien UI fighting through when your ship gets hit and your computer gets damaged.

So I think it’s going to be cool.

I hope you guys enjoyed this short deep dive (extended video coming soon™ ) into the Vanduul UI. I’ll be working on the Merlin next, and all the rest of the ship UI’s and displays.

My name is Zane Bien, I’m a UI designer at CIG, signing off.



Check out the forums for next week’s ‘star studded’ 50’th episode, CIG want to show off the backers that have made the game possible.

– Share your face, your rig, some kind of cool SC image. Wear clothes please.

– Scythe Q&A tomorrow. Go to the forums and post your question, they’ll answer the best questions Friday evening.

– All backers will be able to fly all ships available in AC for the next week.


Sneak Peek

– Shubin Interstellar… wind pressure? Looked like a weather map?

Tune in tomorrow at 11am PDT to Reverse the “Verse.




Writer and inhabitant of the Star Citizen subreddit.