It’s that time of the week again where a new video from Around the Verse is published on the Star Citizen channel to give gamers a look at the content being developed at Cloud Imperium Games for the upcoming space simulator.
Chris Roberts spent the first portion of the video explaining what the hold up was regarding alpha 3.0 and talked a bit about the design schedule before getting into the holo-projection progress.
The new delta patcher will also be implemented soon so that means no more downloading massive files every time there’s a new update. Instead the patcher will only patch what’s been updated for the game.
Roberts also spends a little bit of time explaining why alpha 3.0 is delayed, and moved out of its original summer launch window. He also reveals that starting next week they will be doing a “Burn Down” segment instead of the Around The Verse series due to the team focusing more on polishing up and optimizing for the release of 3.0.
The Burn Down reports will basically be video compilations of the team production meetings, centering around the progress and development issues that they’ve been running into regarding bug fixes and optimization for Star Citizen leading up to the big alpha 3.0 roll out.
The rest of the Around the Verse video centers on the final feature sets for the graphical viewports based on the render-to-texture system.
They demonstrate the render-to-texture system in an action runtime of the game, explaining how the system can be used to render complex visuals to a number of different objects in the game world, such as panels, billboards, or consoles.
They go very deep into the technical weeds detailing this particular feature. Of course, many of you might be wondering what the purpose of this technology is and why they’re talking so much about it? Well, this tech will allow for real-time CCTV equivalent viewports, as well as the ability for players to make comm-calls to other players, enabling them to actually render and showcase player characters in their current state, including custom clothes and other features.
Not only does it allow you to see real-time 3D renders appearing in a 2D display, or as a 3D holo-comms display, it also fits into the standard shaders system they’re using so that it will be able to render changes in lighting, flickering, and other post-processing effects both in the cinematic sequences and in the actual game when players attempt to use it in the persistent universe.
According to Chris Roberts, this sort of holographic display is the first time a game engine will be utilizing this feature in a real-time runtime, and at a CG level without it being pre-rendered or relying on a raw video file playing over a vector map. Near the end of the video he states…
“Our graphics team have really created something [where] I haven’t seen any other engine [that] allows us to do proper holographic tele-presence. None of it is pre-rendered or faked, it’s all live – and possibly for longer term gameplay it’s pretty exciting.”
The alpha 3.0 release isn’t scheduled to go live until the early half of September 8th. Cloud Imperium Games is scheduled to put out 3.0 by September 8th. So we’ll see if they can stick to the schedule this time around and release the alpha to backers as intended.