Quantum, Quasar, and Virtual AI

Star Citizen Logo

The long anticipated update to Quantum, the Universe Simulation, the brain child of Tony Zurovec, Directory of Persistent Universe was released today. We first got an introduction to this system during last year’s CitizenCon. Tony brings us up to date and Tony’s choice of metaphors from Quantum Physics is becoming clear. Enjoy!

Tony’s big brain…

The Bounty Hunter’s patch 3.13

Christoper Blair

With the update to the reputation system CIG has filled out the bounty hunters game play with a new UI and mostly all new missions, including some missions which are on the ground in some of the caves – also new for this patch.

An early issue with the insurance claim system failing to insure critical ship component upgrades and the return of the dancing hornets(spoke too soon) are two confirmed IC issues that seem to have been quickly fixed after a hot patch.

There are some notable improvements with the HUD for Quantum Travel as you no longer need to set a way point to jump to various targets and game locations, just point and click. Setting a way point still lays out intermediate jumps automatically for you to follow, but long gone is the pain in the ass by the seat of your pants navigation when the Skyline star map fails to fully function. The star map is still quirky.

Wait time on bounty missions after arriving at your target’s location is a bit too long in most cases. Stealth is working great. There are reports of torpedoes failing to resupply on the Eclipse, but I could not duplicate the problem, instead, noticed rock bottom prices. That stuck ladder on the Eclipse – WTF.

So far the servers have been stable and I have yet to see a dreaded disconnect or crash. So much improved that finally cargo may be an option.

We will be “Yela Yell” with much less frequency!

Return of the Knife Fight

Christoper Blair

Today CIG laid out their strategy to bring back hardcore PVP players in a somewhat lengthy discussion that confirms that they really have heard the message. To do it right turns out to be a rather large project so we expect to see the fruits of CIG’s latest strategy sometime post 3.11, a 3.12 perhaps?

For the 3.10 patch first steps include new tech to model atmospheric flight with changes to the thruster efficiency curves and drag modeling using individually simulated aerodynamic surfaces. Fixed weapons are seeing a buff in their “self gimbaling” capability (convergence) to improve aim. Jerk has been nerfed from infinite to something finite (still fun, we hope) so that thrusters will not respond immediately to changes in acceleration. Hopefully this will result in smoother handling with reduced jitter.

The concept of “capacitance” is expected to provide the next layer of complexity needed to enable the “knife fight” by capping use of critical resources. For example, a ship could circle strafe for a time, but the ability of a ship to continue to excessively strafe would slowly be nerfed, presumably by limiting the amount of power to the thrusters, e.g. the capacitor discharging/recharging.

When flying above SCM speeds weapon accuracy, gimbal assist speed, and missile lock speed will be negatively affected.

Return of Knife Fighting

The Flight Model

YouTube user Kreion reviews the Star Citizen FM

A somewhat pejorative term in recent patches, this term is often used to refer to the “users” experience flying CIG’s ships, abstracting away the underlying systems. I will admit it took me years to understand what was going on. My early years were plagued by questioning folks claiming that uncoupled flight was the only true 6DOF and that somehow flying in space was a magical place for space ships. My irritation at these folks did get me banned from what is now known as Spectrum for a short time.

Nothing to see there, move along, move along.

After we lost the “knife fighter” rendition of the FM after the 3.0 patch folks lost all interest in AC and the really cool instances in Squadron Battle and Battle Royal – just disappeared. I was again at a loss to understand what had happened.

It was clear that a group of self proclaimed skilled pilots with not much to offer but tropes labeling anybody who disagreed with them a Care Bear, were making a lot of noise. Still, I failed to break through the noise. These folks had nothing technical to offer.

I found little to protest with CIG’s onward experimentations with the FM/IFCS as many of the updates made sense (other than hover-mode). Clearly the model needed to evolve. The loss of HUD features that were removed waiting for new UI tech provided CIG some political cover. My initial reviews of the post 3.0 FM pretty much centered on WOW, at last, I can control my ship! But those knife fights never returned.

Obviously something was wrong, with alpha. Go figure. So I am happy to see someone spelled the issues out, clearly.

Spoiler Alert! The SCM mode limiter was a good thing!

Dual Joystick Setup Series

buzzzkiller emoji

Many of the vids on this topic are dated and stale. It was nice to run across this fairly new series by BuzZzKiller. He clearly describes the ins and outs of almost every option available for use with Star Citizen. So without further ado:

You can use the builtin playlist located in the upper right.