Star Citizen 3.0 Delayed To September

Star Citizen 3.0 Delayed To September

Image: Xanvast/Flickr

If you’ve been holding out for alpha 3.0 of Star Citizen, you’ll need to wait a little while longer.

After originally aiming for a release at the end of August, the launch of alpha 3.0 has been bumped back to early September. A demo of 3.0 was shown off at Gamescom last year, showing many of the systems that will tie Star Citizen together, including moon landings and exploration, a new patcher, new backend functionality, the debut of three new moons, a new item system and more.

There’s always been a forthcoming notice on the Star Citizen production schedule, warning that estimates are estimates and can be subject to change at any time. The developers have also put out a number of videos hinting at just how difficult an undertaking Star Citizen has become from its initial vision.

In a separate post that was reported by Eurogamer, Star Citizen director of player relations Will Leverett said the alpha release “introduced variables and challenges that we could never have anticipated” and that the technology was “an order of magnitude larger and more complex than all of our previous versions combined”.

Today, 3.0 is about delivering an entirely explorable solar system with the backend services to make it dynamic. It’s about giving us the city and planet building tools to create for you the rest of the universe in an intelligent, scalable, efficient, and compelling manner. It’s about the first step in giving you the tools to create player outposts and communities. It’s about the streaming tech to allow you to take off from one moon, fly across the system, and land on an entirely different moon, the driving a freaking sweet buggy out of the back of your ship to race around the entire planet… all without a loading screen. It’s about giving you the ability to buy what’s on the web inside kiosks. It’s about usable turret gameplay, and Items 2.0 so you can customise your own ship with new components. It’s about picking objects and cargo so you can haul commodities across space as a trader and merchant. It’s about gutting a singleplayer engine to support thousands of players.

The response to the announcement has been mixed. Some backers welcomed the decision, saying they understood the reasoning and would prefer that Cloud Imperium delayed the release until the performance was stable enough for wider consumption. “As an investor in CIG I’m interested in their success as a company,” one thread on the Star Citizen subreddit reads, “and I would rather spend time and energy helping CIG figure about how be more [sic] transparent with the reasons and details behind the delays rather than pressuring them for delivery.” Others noted that the release of 3.0 would also come with the updated patcher, which should make it easier for CIG to roll out smaller updates in the future, thereby reducing the time between updates for backers.

Others pointed to the fortnight-long delay as further evidence of the game hampered by feature creep, and that the focus on 3.0 has detracted from work on core mechanics. Users across social media and forums also criticised the company for the discrepancies between the features that were first announced with 3.0, although backend tools and features have been added to 3.0 since its initial announcement.

Part of Star Citizen‘s challenge has always been managing expectations, partially because so much of its development is exposed to fans and backers in a way that other games aren’t. The massive personal investment some gamers have made over the years only ramps those expectations up, which always creates tensions whenever a delay is announced. Nonetheless, we’re expecting to hear more about Star Citizen 3.0 at Gamescom later this month, and hopefully the Squadron 42 singleplayer campaign, which is still scheduled for release some time this year.


  • About a year and a half ago I decided to not actively pay attention to SC news anymore. Development of early systems has been such a slow process that it is quite frustrating. I still want the game to release (a drunk purchase of a $300 ship does that to you), but I think its just better to ignore it for now.

    • The moment I first heard about Chris Robert’s making a new space game I was excited. This was the guy behind Wing Commander!!.. when the crowdfunding campaign started I was all set to toss some money his way, but warning bells started ringing in my head and I held off.. years later I want this to be a success, I want this to live up to the hype and be what they promise and if it is ever released I will buy it.

      That said at this stage I’m just bracing myself for the project to implode.

      as for the single player campaign being released this year.. haha yeah that is so not going to happen

      • Have a gander at some of the Around the Verse videos that CIG have been putting out. It should reassure you that this project is far from imploding.

        • This definately. good news doesnt get publicity nearly 1/100th of the time. Each week a RSI has a video that shows what been worked on by different studioes

        • I have looked, and I still stand by what I said. I just don’t believe they will ever release a product that resembles what they are promising

          • Ahhh, gotcha. Well, that’s a little different from “imploding”.

            As for me, I’m accepting of changes made to the original scope. I believe it’ll make the game better. There’s great promise in this project, and I’m looking forward to seeing what it will become.

          • I believe one of the following will happen with Stat Citizen:
            1. The entire project implodes and takes peoples money with nothing to show for it at the end.
            2.Something is released that doesnt resemble what they are promising and the hype surrounding it and we will have a shitstorm that makes No mans sky look like a Sunday picnic.

            I bring up no mans sky because I’m seeing a lot of the same sort of almost religious faith that it will match the hype and people will be pissed to say the least.

            All that said I want to be wrong, I will scream from the roof tops that I was wrong about it if its released and matches what they are promising

    • Very much the same boat. I had 3.0 on my radar from a friend that’s super keen.
      But just trying not to get any info.
      It will be done when it’s done.

    • I’m with you. I actually made a pledge back in Xmas 2014 (Freelancer). I pretty much forgot about it for all that time, and now I’m interested again.

    • Yeah, it’s not earth shattering. But there’s been hope for a big Gamescom event (SC often uses Gamescom as a big showcase before CitizenCon) and figured it was worth giving people the heads up.

      • Oh I understand and I definitely appreciate the article. That comment was less directed at you and more at the doomsayers (and Redditors) that seem to pop up whenever the development time or a delay with Star Citizen gets mentioned 🙂

        • yeah i saw the sub reddit yesterday before news broke and it was a complete and utter dumpster fire of doom and gloom, though one thread actually had a list of the past releases with the first time a patch was ment to release followed by the push back date and then actual date a patch released and all 3 of the previous releases happened after the intial date but before the pushed back date

    • oh derek smart.. he is an angry muppet, while i believe he might be right to some extent the self righteousness of the man defies belief.

      dude i have played your games they are so dense and unplayable they make trying to learn DCS modules look like a cake walk

    • Why is that guy so butthurt? Seems to me he has his head up his own bum for no reason what so ever about SC.

      • Because he was a backer before they unilaterally refunded him and told him to piss off. He’s since taken it upon himself to expose the sham. As he says “they made it personal.”

      • Smart was stirring shit long before his backing was refunded. TLDR at the end.

        The feud between Roberts and Smart goes back decades. Smart threatened to sue Robers for Wing Commander as far back as 1990, claiming it infringed on his Battlecruiser 3000AD work, but never followed through. He made grand claims in the early 90s that Battlecruiser would blow Wing Commander out of the water, and was humiliated when by the time it finally released in 1996 it was garbage.

        When Roberts announced Star Citzen, Smart had recently started working on his next title Line of Defense, and the circumstance ended up being very similar to what happened in the 90s – nobody gave a shit about Smart, and everyone got hyped for Roberts. It’s believed by many that the only reason he backed SC in the first place was so he could get access to backer forums to continue what had become a vendetta for him against Roberts. It’s not clear if that’s true, but it was in 2014 that he accused the game of being a Ponzi scheme.

        Smart released Line of Defense the same year and it was terrible, scoring sub-20% on Steam at the time (the game has since been either pulled or replaced with Line of Defense Tactics). Meanwhile Roberts continued raking in millions. It’s not hard to imagine the success of his perceived rival (even though Roberts was largely unaware of him except for the lawsuit threat) incensed him further.

        After giving up on Line of Defense in 2015, he renewed his campaign against Star Citizen. He petitioned the FTC to investigate CIG finances. At that point CIG had enough and gave him the boot, cancelling his pledge and refunding his money. From that point Smart went ballistic and it’s been a war (from his view of things at least) ever since, literally to the point of him quoting Sun Tsu. He tried to get the FBI and IRS involved, though to date no investigation from any of the three agencies seems to have happened.

        If anyone ‘made it personal’ first it was Smart. His articles in 2015 were loaded with personal attacks against Roberts and his wife Sandi, who also works for the company. This is a man with delusions of grandeur that never came to be, jealous of someone who in his mind did less but succeeded more. It only takes reading Smart’s articles and posts to see how prideful and overconfident he is, and failure is a very hard pill to swallow to someone like that. It’s easier to think that there must be some impropriety at work instead, that Roberts succeeded where he failed not because of luck or better work but because he’s scamming people. Smart has invested a lot of effort starting from that conclusion and selectively searching for reasons to support it.

        TLDR: Smart sees Roberts as his rival in space game development, believes Roberts’ success stems from deceit where honest Smart’s efforts met with failure, and is single-mindedly insistent on exposing the fraud he wants to believe exists because if Smart didn’t deserve to succeed then surely neither does Roberts.

        • dude, isnt that like one to the origin stories about why the penguin hates bruce wayne

          • It wouldn’t surprise me if the whole thing is some kind of scripted real life comic book.

  • Whenever I see updates for Star Citizen I always go and take a gander at kickstarter where they did $2 million dollars of their initial crowd funding, look at the estimated delivery date of November 2014, and remember back to the day in 2012 I dropped an initial $60US on it.

    I bought a couple of other ships and was in the bag for about $150-200 of backing and then I started to see where it was going and sold my ships with their ‘lifetime insurrance’ (at cost no profiteering) to get out. I can understand people still being keen for this game to come out and following its development closely, especially people who have a heavy financial investment in the game.

    Go have a look at how much crowd funding it has received, $155,692,872 as of the moment I write this comment. People really need to stop giving them money because the game that was promised should have been delivered 3 years ago for one tenth of the money.

    • Yep, if you’re not patient, it’s not a good idea to be part of a development project of this size.

      • It’s the only crowd funded computer game I have backed out of, Pillars of Eternity, Torment, Wasteland 2 and about 10 others from small to large projects, as well as other non-game projects such as Pebble and Occulus rift are all crowd funding projects I have invested in. It’s not a lack of patients that had me disappointed with RSI, it was the constant feature creep, over promising and under delivering. I have worked in software development, I am aware of the development pitfalls that happen with unfocused designers and project leads.

        I hope the game comes out, and is an amazing experience, but to give some perspective since I backed this project I have graduated from university, worked in my field for 3 years, gotten married, had a kid, moved interstate twice and started studying a postgraduate degree, and when the project is finally delivered I won’t be surprised if I’ve finished study and my kid has started school.

        • I’ve also worked in software development. You do have a good point about that. Star Citizen is extremely ambitious, and there certainly has been feature creep. It’s a dangerous place to be.

          Having said that, though, I think the team have found some real focus this year. Seems the 3.0 release is responsible for that. The recent updates have shown a vision that’s actually coming together. The future roadmap (for at least the next few point releases) seems well planned and set.

          Perhaps I’m being too optimistic, but I think there’s a good chance they can pull it off. Whether the game is any fun to play, well, that’s another thing. 😉

          • It’s too ambitious.

            They have promised to implement pretty much every brain fart that anyone has ever had.

            The problem with taking this long is the tech is flashing past their eyes. By the time they actually release, it will be nostalgic and retro.

            BTW – I think they should have a playable race of reptilian gym junkies who wear velour sweats.

    • the moment they started selling ships that exist as nothing but pretty pictures as a revenue steam for frankly stupid amounts of money was the moment i actually thought “oh this is not going to end well”

      • While I agree they haven’t done a good job of making it clear, the ship packages aren’t purchases, they’re pledges. They work the same way the Kickstarter tiers worked, you choose how much money you want to pledge to the development of the game and the sum total of your pledges earns you what are basically “thank you” credits that you can spend on ships or whatever else you want from their reward options.

        All the pledge ships exist except one, as an aside. They were all progressively added in the Hangar module in 2014. They’re also all flyable except for two Cutlass variants, three Freelancer variants and three Constellation variants. The base variant for all ships except one is flyable. Since 2015, every new ship added to the game has been flyable within a month of hitting the hangar.

        The one ship missing at the moment, to the best of my knowledge, is the Idris. Originally intended to be a corvette, it was redesigned as a frigate in 2014 but hasn’t hit the game yet.

  • Star Citizen 3.0
    HAHAHA that’s rich! 5 years in development hell and you now get the third version of the Alpha.

  • I’m eager to see what promises Chris makes at Gamescom this time around, given that we are almost 12 months on from when he said that alpha 3.0 would be out before Christmas 2016.

    The guy either (a) has absolutely no idea what his teams are doing and how fast they are doing it; or (b) thinks that he can arbitrarily pull dates out of thin air and that his teams will automagically get stuff done in time. The idea that he can estimate that alpha 3.0 would be ready within 4 months but it’s now been almost 12 months… the mind boggles.

    Word is that CIG teams have dropped everything and are working on some glitzy show-piece for Gamescom. Gotta keep those dollars rolling in, y’all!

  • C’mon now Kotaku, this isn’t really what you call newsworthy, is it?

    Let me know if a Star Citizen updated arrives ON TIME, now that’d be a proper headline.

  • I backed this project at $6 million. They specifically outlined how much bigger and better the game would get the more it raised. It is now raised like 10 times the top target so it was only going to be bigger again and more polished. The reason i backed it is because they aren’t under predsure from a publisher to release a half polished piece of turd due to deadline. It will be ready when its ready and we’ll all benefit from it. If you didn’t know what you were backing then thats none other than your own fault. I dont actively follow it anymore and check up every 3-6 months and its still got me excited.
    Can’t wait for 3.0 to come out. Whenever that is haha but i hope it makes its september date 🙂

Show more comments

Comments are closed.

Log in to comment on this story!