There’s a star man waiting in the sky, and he’s got a gun.
Chris Roberts has talked details on Star Marine, the FPS component that will glue together the spaceship and planetary wandering segments of Star Citizen seamlessly. Where most FPS developers concern themselves with the weightiness of combat, Cloud Imperium are also tackling weightlessness – perfecting zero-g in CryEngine before they release a version of the module to backers.
“Since the days of Wing Commander, I’ve dreamed of integrating a first person shooter with a space sim,” wrote Chris Roberts. “It’s such an exciting idea: you might land your fighter on a carrier and then race into battle to repel alien boarders… or you might put down on a seedy border world and fight off pirates eager to steal your cargo!”
It’s the dream replacement for between-mission menus and cutscenes – one nobody’s ever had the money to build before. Instead of playing a ship, we’ll play a character in a ship – ready to hop out onto a planet or into the vacuum.
That last possibility has been a bit of a nightmare for Cloud Imperium’s teams, who’re building a traditional FPS in tandem with zero gravity shipless combat – something no other CryEngine game has shipped with before.
When Star Marine is released to backers, it’ll include a zero-g sport named SATA Ball. Two teams spawn at opposite ends of a large room and fight to gain control of a ball at the centre – shooting to stun, firing grappling hooks, and taking cover behind objects suspended in the air. It sounds compellingly crackers.
It’s a way off – Cloud Imperium won’t put Star Marine out in the same basic state of fidelity as Arena Commander, and even when they do they’re expecting “many bugs, glitches and things that just overall need polish”.
“Recent weeks have focused on getting our ducks in a row based on our internal testing,” said Roberts, “which has lead us to revamp everything from overhauling the network backend to improving character animations to revamping the zero-g portion of the game to better match our lore.”
Of all the games Cloud Imperium are taping together under the Star Citizen banner, which do you most like the look of?