Fans of Chris Roberts' space everything simulator get their first significant slice of gameplay with the launch of Star Citizen alpha 2.0, which should push the world's most crowdfunded anything past the $US100 ($139) million mark.
A bunch of little playable things becomes several massive playable things in Star Citizen alpha 2.0. Players basically get a sector of space to explore, bringing with it the first taste of things like multi-crew ships, first-person combat and wandering outside in space without one of those pricey ships.
The main crux of the new gameplay takes place around a planet called Crusader, because in the future planet names are pretty cool. Players start off on a space station and from there can wander outside, hop into a ship alone or with other people, and then fumble with the controls until they crash into the deck. At least that's been my experience so far.
To my credit, I've also jumped off the space station, spiralling off into nothingness while trying to use my suit's thrusters to help me not die. The results have been mixed. Last time the game crashed on me before I found out if I made it. Cliffhanger!
Most exciting airlock ever!
Those who make it off the station can do all of the things on this bullet-list that came with the official announcement.
- EVA (Extra Vehicular Activity) — drift out of your ship's airlock and venture into the void of space and back
- 20+ random encounters — combat and exploration (lost wrecks and abandoned space stations)
- Quantum travel — travel in ships through the vastness of space at 0.2 the speed of light
- New flyable ships including the Constellation, the Retaliator and the Vanguard.Large world tech — explore extremely large expanses of space seamlessly, without loading screens
- Locations to explore:
- One planet (Crusader)
- Three moons
- Three distinct space stations
- One repair/restock station
- Nine comm arrays
- Wreckage to scavenge and never-ending battles in the Yela asteroid belt
- …and much more
If you plan on picking up a ship and playing, be sure to read up on both the full update features list and the known issues post, so you don't get surprised when the crab in the hangar fishtank doesn't animate properly.
I'd love to do a video, but between the really choppy framerates and the random crashes I can't seem to get one done. I will keep trying.
In the meantime, the current crowdfunding total for Star Citizen is $US99,942,530 ($138,797,187). Hopefully some of that is going towards fixing that crab.