Today Cloud Imperium Games released the much-awaited update Alpha 3.14 in its growing space simulator Star Citizen.
The biggest feature of the update is the introduction of Orison, the landing zone floating over the gas giant planet Crusader, basically a beautiful “city in the clouds.”
We also get new gameplay features and the introduction of the RSI Constellation Taurus starship variant.
Here’s a list.
- Orison Landing Zone: Located in the atmosphere of the giant gas planet Crusader, players can now visit the Orison Landing Zone in the Stanton System. As the headquarters for ship manufacturer Crusader Industries, this floating cloud city allows staff to live, work, and relax with all of the amenities and conveniences expected for the most talented and qualified personnel in the ‘verse. Attractions include the Voyager bar, various new shops and facilities, a garden area, and breathtaking sunset and sunrise views. Players can visit the eye-catching Stormwal sculpture on Orison, an homage to the massive space whales that live in Orison’s clouds, and even purchase a plushie of Crusader Industries’ official mascot, Finley the Stormwal, to commemorate their visit.
- Volumetric Cloud Tech: Thick clouds span the atmosphere of the gas giant Crusader, brought to life with Star Citizen’s stunning new volumetric cloud technology. Admire the view from both afar and up close as you cut through the vaporous walls of mist enclosing the Orison Landing Zone and its surroundings.
- Missile Operator Mode: Missiles now function via operator mode with a new UI, and can also be controlled by co-pilots. Further improvements to missile functionality include selecting from various types of missiles, dumb firing options, and multiple missile firing options. The adoption of the Intelligent Flight Control System aims to make missile behavior and performance even more realistic. These system improvements will have the most impact on ships and vehicles with a focus on missile armaments, including the Freelancer MIS, Esperia Talon Shrike, Tumbril Cyclone MT, and Anvil Ballista.
- Power Management: Pilots will now have unprecedented control over their ship’s performance during combat. Power management allows players to control power allocated to three core ship systems: weapons, shields, and engines. This new feature is designed to give pilots an edge in ship combat when adjusting power to key systems at critical moments to focus on offense, defense, or evasive maneuvers. It also builds off other multi-crew systems, laying the groundwork for scenarios where a co-pilot may need to focus on power management during intense dogfights.
- Radar, Scanning, and Ping: Players can now scan ships for information on cargo, crew, crime stats, and components. In addition, players can now mask their ship’s signature, allowing them to avoid detection from scanners. This introduces new options for scenarios calling for stealth-focused gameplay, transport, and information gathering.
- New Dynamic Event: Ninetails Lockdown is a brand-new player-versus-player focused Dynamic Event that finds a Stanton space station blockaded by the Ninetails pirates. Players must choose to break and repel the pirate blockade, or to join the Ninetails pirates in taking out security forces.
- Improved Dynamic Event: The XenoThreat Dynamic Event returns with numerous improvements based directly on player feedback and input. Join the call to arms as players collectively work to repel invaders from the Pyro System.
- RSI Constellation Taurus: The highly anticipated and long-awaited Constellation Taurus finally arrives in the ‘verse, marking the completion of the line of ships that players affectionately call “the Connie.” The Taurus is the essential ship on a player’s journey to cargo trading domination in Star Citizen. Featuring impressive cargo storage capacity, strong defensive weaponry, and a concealed cargo hold for discreet delivery of valuable goods, the Constellation Taurus marks a step up from smaller cargo haulers such as the Freelancer.
The press release also included a comment from creative director Chris Roberts.
“We are very excited for players to visit and explore the Orison Landing Zone, our very own ‘City in the Clouds,’ marking a major milestone for us as the fourth and final landing zone of Stanton system is delivered — and I couldn’t be more proud of what our teams have accomplished.
With the implementation of our volumetric cloud tech, Crusader is now re-imagined as an awe-inspiring, beautiful gas giant just waiting to be visited. Star Citizen has never looked better, but beyond the clouds of Alpha 3.14 – Welcome to Orison there is even more for both new and longtime players to discover in our latest update with major ship combat improvements, new dynamic events, the long-awaited arrival of the fan-favorite Constellation Taurus, and more.”
Below you can check out three trailers including one introducing Orison and one for the Constellation Taurus, alongside a batch of official images.
In other Star Citizen news, the crowdfunding total has recently passed $378 million and it’s currently sitting on $378,439,946.
The number of registered accounts is getting close to 3.2 million, and it’s at 3,180,186 at the moment of this writing.
As usual, you should keep in mind that it’s known that not all of them are paying players. The number includes free accounts created for a variety of reasons, including Free Fly events like the one that recently ended.
We recently learned that a new studio has been opened to create new systems and content for Star Citizen, while Firesprite will work on the Battlefield-like mode “Theaters of War.”
If you’re wondering whether the game is actually fun to play, this is a good place to start. A star-studded single-player campaign titled Squadron 42 is in development.
For the sake of full disclosure, do keep in mind that the author of this article has been a Star Citizen backer since the original Kickstarter campaign several years ago.