Star Citizen: 3.12 is the best version ever

Star Citizen: 3.12 is the best version ever
When we accepted to be part of the Star Citizen universe under construction we knew well that there would be moments of play and moments of pause: periods in which we would have made the dawn for days, and others in which abused by bugs we would have inevitably given up, waiting for good news on the horizon.

And so it happened: about six months ago we uninstalled the game to free the mandatory SSD, and just in these days we made our first return among the stars of the galaxy signed Chris Roberts taking advantage of version 3.12. And it was more than exciting: even revealing.

Pleasant phase

The distance was not very long, but enough to give three big updates, and subsequent hotfixes, time to debut and settle down . However, it is not the increased number of features or new ships that impressed us the most during our most recent stay on the Star Citizen servers, but this new cleansing layer that has been applied to the whole experience, now much friendlier than in passed while still remaining an alpha, with all the ensuing bugs.

Even interpreting the road map, the willingness of the developers to tidy up everything that has been done to date appears increasingly clear, in order to arrive in mid-2021 with a product that is still incomplete, but finally appealing to a wider audience. The timing is on the side of the Cloud Imperium Games: the arrival of the new GPUs from Nvidia and AMD will push many to refresh their hardware, allowing many new gamers to start snooping on the Star Citizen homepage without big guilt . We must therefore be found dressed up, in order to conquer the new possible user with a glance: is Star Citizen about to enter its pleasant phase?

Anterior future

We have to admit, we wouldn't mind. It would then be a way to admit that the project will never end, as indeed it should be. Let's stop asking: "but when will it be complete?". It will likely only be when her servers are inevitably shut down. Think of that dramatic ending: "Star Citizen is ... finally ... complete!". The old man pushes the red button and the lights go out one after the other, then takes his coat, hat, cane and slowly closes the door behind him. Cindy Lauper at the ball and credits.

But that's it, useless to go around it: there will always be a new function to insert, a new system with which to expand its boundaries, a new physical engine to embrace, and who knows what they could combine with the technologies of tomorrow, machine learning for example. Star Citizen now has to keep growing, and it is, but it also has to fix itself, and finally it has started doing that too. It is not the state in which we optimistically hoped to find it when, a year ago, we started making the first estimates on development times, but Covid has slowed everyone down and could not help but slow down the already pachydermal Cloud Imperium Game, which however seems to have found a new and better roadmap just at the end of the year.

Clearer menus and traction rays

The new version of Star Citizen released in mid-December, 3.12, has revealed in fact the best of 2020 thanks to the very important new gameplay and graphics introduced. In line with what has been said before, several menus have been rethought, including those of the elevators, the commands are more reactive and finally the entrances to the spaceships through the holodeck are highlighted, in order to help those who beginners cannot even enter on your own flying car. These changes, including those introduced in previous versions, make Star Citizen much clearer in its basic functions than it was at the beginning of the year.

In the commercial districts, it is now possible to find a new chain of shops dedicated specifically to mining, the first profession in Star Citizen that can finally be said to be almost complete. Here it will also be possible a new accessory for the multi tool that will allow us, through the use of a tractor beam, to move materials, bodies, weapons with extreme ease. The same beam can be used in zero gravity to attach to surfaces and spaceships, in order to move in EVA more efficiently.

Nebulae and Raffinerei

In space we can instead observe the new Gas Clouds Tech at work, technology that has allowed the inclusion in the sidereal black of volumetric gaseous formations large hundreds of cubic kilometers that will affect the color of the area, the visibility of the pilots and in the future who knows, even the driving model of the spaceships. The visual effect is wonderful, able to totally transform the game in its spatial phases. Even the planets and some moons (but in the coming months the process will be completed with all the stars present in the Stanton system) have undergone a drastic make-over that has made them much more fascinating, realistic, complex than before.

Graphic novelties involve ship combat and give a new look to shields under pressure from enemy blows, and explosions that are now more intense and spectacular. Wandering around Stanton you will soon discover the different changes of some space bases, in order to make way for the new refiners to be used to work the materials collected with mining. The refineries extend like metal branches around the bases and are the perfect example of how complex a universe like that of Star Citizen is to be created, where everything occupies a well-defined space and must be placed in a logical, realistic, but above all reachable way. physically by the players. Stanton is still the only explorable system in the game, but it is now clear that the work is finally coming to an end and this means that soon we will start talking about the rest of the galaxy. Extending the Star Citizen space will not take the same amount of time it takes to build Stanton, which is also used to fine-tune all the technologies that will make building subsequent systems much faster.

Reputation

The biggest change introduced with 3.12, which we sadistically kept at the end, is the implementation of the first persistent reputation system. Already in this basic form, reputation has totally changed the pace of the game, at least for those who prefer to accept missions rather than engage in other more free activities. Thanks to version 3.12 of Star Citizen, we can finally say goodbye to missions in no particular order, with the reset of progress after each death, to welcome a reputation that will grow and decrease according to our actions, also changing the missions that the factions existing will be willing to give us. And this also means more complex missions that are better linked to our area of ​​expertise.

With the arrival of reputation, the mission system lacks only the procedural part, the one that will allow the game system to offer us always different tasks in a totally autonomous way, and it is very likely that this fundamental function will arrive just in the course of 2021.

Space prison

As for the new 3.12, the news does not end there: there are new ships, the physical model has been revised during the flight in atmosphere, the functioning of torpedos in battle, while other changes have been introduced to make space dogfight closer and consequently fun. In 3.12 the game's first Capital Ship, the Idris, also appears. For those who are left behind, in the past months the new penitentiary has made its appearance, where outlaw players are confined and from which, if they want and have the ability, they can organize spectacular escapes. In August, the AI ​​of the NPCs, who now seek cover, change weapons or at least try with more conviction than before, improved a lot, while still remaining insufficient. Also in the summer, the system was introduced that allows players to exchange money, a new type of electric weapon and the possibility of dragging their injured friends away from danger, an indispensable function for the doctors of the future.

Less interesting but no less fundamental the innovations brought by the 3.11 release instead in October, when we were provided with a quick inventory where to cram food and water, the space bases were equipped with new defenses and the grenade and object launching system.

Asteroid tour

There is still a long way to go for the persistent universe of Star Citizen. There are still some essential functions, especially on the server side, but the bulk of the work really seems to be one step away from the turning point, when the game can finally slow down its iterations to focus more on growth.

It is not yet time to throw yourself into it, but that moment is approaching faster and faster. Waiting for news also regarding Squadron 42, the real big absentee of this 2020 by Star Citizen.



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