Star Citizen NPC Collision Avoidance Update Will Improve AI Navigation
Star Citizen NPCs

Cloud Imperium Games rolled out a short and sweet update for Star Citizen. The latest update covers the latest progress that the team has been making on the high-end space sim.

This week’s episode is pretty short, clocking in at just under nine minutes. They briefly cover some core topics, including NPC locomotion and entity avoidance, thruster damage effects, planetary effects, and object container streaming improvements.

The early section specifically focuses on collision avoidance for the AI system.

They give a brief overview of how they’re using procedural collision system that hooks into the character locomotion system that allows the designers to move the characters around objects, other characters, and moving through rooms, halls, and structures.

Star Citizen AI Pathfinding

The procedural collision system works in tandem with the path navigation system, where NPCs that follow set paths will dynamically react to an entity in its path and move – at a specific distance relative to the volume of the entity – to avoid colliding with said object. This system works with single entities and with multiple entities in the pathway.

They demonstrate how the AI dynamically adjusts its path to ensure that it avoids colliding with objects, but also at the same time never completely veers away from its targeted destination. You can see it in action below.

They also discuss some of the improvements to the object container streaming for alpha 3.5.

The networking team are specifically optimizing the streaming in order to reduce the frame stalls that would take place where players would encounter noticeable hiccups going into and coming out of the quantum travel, as well as coming into view of large satellite stations or hubs.

The idea is that the team are reducing the load on the system as entities are streamed into memory, so that there are fewer stop gaps between the objects loading into memory and players encountering the load time stalls. Ultimately this will continue to improve the overall performance.

They’re also looking into reducing server disconnection and server and client crashes that were spawned from the OCS either causing loops that would lead into a crash, or the OCS hanging on load times, which would ultimately result in disconnection or crashes.

The last piece of the video outlines the progress being made with the thruster damage, which was in the early prototyping phase a few weeks ago. So it’s being finalized for implementation into alpha 3.5.

You can keep track of the development for Star Citizen by visiting the official website.

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