We’ve been waiting a long time for the 3.13.3 patch for Star Citizen. It’s the big Nova patch—or one of them, at least—and it has delayed everyone’s holiday plans. Back in December, we reported on the release of the 3.13.2 patch, which had a couple of noteworthy changes. At the time, we also covered the news that more patch-related delays were on the way; however, the team has been very quiet over the last couple of weeks.
The latest alpha release of Star Citizen, version 3.13, is now available for download. A lot of new activities, mechanics, and features have been added to Star Citizen Alpha this month, as well as many fixes for problems that existed in the game, such as the missing carrier landing sequence. I’ve also caught up on some of the backlog of game development I’ve been neglecting and been able to provide some commentary about the new features.
Following the release of alpha 3.13, the Star Citizen community is vigorously debating the game’s stability, bugs, delays, communication, and the overall direction of how Star Citizen is being developed. There are many advantages to staying on top of the Star Citizen developments, and it’s only available through online subscriptions to the development team’s official forums. As one member put it:
As is customary for CIG, the developers are reflecting on the release of alpha 3.13 and the Invictus Launch Week event of Star Citizen, giving their views on what worked, what didn’t, and what lessons were learnt with each feature’s release.
The post acknowledges some missteps, including issues with volatile cargo containers, problems using trolleys with certain ships due to ramp shapes and positions, the reputation system taking too long to fully implement, a poor reception for the two-seater ROC Greycat DS mining buggy, and a “deceptively complex” AI service used to map live positions of mission-spawned NPCs amon. The developers are working on hover trolleys to solve problems with wheels not hitting ramps; better communication for cross-team features like the reputation system, mission systems, and dangerous cargo; and updating inventory behavior, the cargo system, and cave setups to help the Greycat DS achieve its intended purpose.
CIG claims that Invictus Launch Week went well overall, and that the event also allowed the team to add dynamic shop modifiers, which alter a shop’s inventory dynamically depending on in-game activities, as well as triggers that generate missions when store inventories reach certain thresholds. However, because to the enormous size of the process required to make changes to these dynamic systems, modifications could not be made fast, thus CIG is promising improved collaboration across teams to handle big-scale events like Invictus.
Long-time MMORPG fans may recall that Star Citizen was initially Kickstarted in 2012 for almost $2 million, with a 2014 release date anticipated. It is still in an unfinished but playable alpha as of 2021, after raising approximately $350 million from players via years of ongoing crowdfunding and sales of in-game ships and other assets. It is now the most crowdfunded video game ever, and it has been met with unwavering support from fans and skepticism from detractors. Squadron 42, a co-developed single-player game, has also been frequently postponed.
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