Star Citizen’s 3.5 alpha is really, truly ‘imminent’ this time

    
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The last week of March, everyone was super excited because patch day for Star Citizen had finally arrived. The 3.5 alpha, with its playable female toons, retooled flight model, and new planets, was finally rolling out, not just to elite testers but to normal backers. Then Cloud Imperium was going to take a break from social publishing for three weeks while the studio organized itself around the next quarterly update, alpha 3.6.

Except that’s not quite what happened, is it. More than two weeks later, regular backers still have incomplete access to 3.5, or more specifically, it’s playable only on the PTU, which many gamers are reluctant to download, knowing it’ll be wiped and ask players to re-download dozens of gigs of files frequently. According to multiple backers, CIG has been dispatching regular emails throughout the period promising that the real launch is imminent, that the final push is on the PTU and will hit the “live” test servers any minute now. Here’s one from Friday:

Of course, the delay has also meant the delay of the monthly report (the last one was delayed too) and confusion over why CIG hasn’t clearly communicated it needs more time to iron out all the bugs reportedly plaguing this version of the game.

Source: Reddit. Thanks so much, DK!
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Lord Shua

It’s nice to hear all the good things but if you wasnt va level headed assessment ask an average player not a heavily invested backer. 3.5 is a mess. AI FPS or pilots are a joke. Most missions are broken. Cargo hauling is flat with no fluctuations or market to speak of. Flight mechanics needs a few more months. Mining is completely borked and causes constant crashing to desktop. So, literally all you can do is fly a ship that will have its thrusters overheat if try to do sound of fun flying. 3.5 is two weeks late and a slimmed down version ofv what it was suppose to be. CIG has failed to deliver their last 2 patches in their entirety. 3.4 was gutted, and now 3.5 is taking longer than CIG said (Erin’s Robert’s claimed this roadmap to be very accurate) and they’ve failed every single patch. Every patch is a sliver of it was listed as on roadmap. With 3.5 still in development means 3.6 will be gutted ans also late. It’s a solid do not buy until launch.

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Joe Blobers

Lord Shua It is a solid do not buy… if you can’t stand true Game development in Alpha state.

Verified from day one. Now for those able to handle it, it is a great experience, not playing a polished game but looking it grow quarter after quarter, especially for new comers who won’t have to wait 6 years but 5 quarters till Beta (Squadron 42) and another year of patch for SC.

SC did not failed their two last patch. Few features were pushed for later release (some were added) and 3.4 was satisfactory… for an Alpha. All patch are more or less equal. Many bugs in PTU, more stable in PU. Rince and repeat at next patch.

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Lord Shua

Go to CIG Community twitch page. The last video has Feb telling us that squadron 42 was being finished 4 years ago. Sq42 will be at least 6 months late and it’ll be amazing if star citizen actually completes because if you look at their financials its was close to going under before 46 million dollar investment. Star citizen is at least 5 years out and they won’t n sustain ship sales till then. Sq42 isn’t going get massive new sales either as many already own it. I noticed you didn’t address anything I pointed out as false. At least your not lying. Just misleading.

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Bruno Brito

Ignore Joe. Just do your research and if it fits your criteria, join in.

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Joe Blobers

Go to Reddit SC. Plus 20K new members in few months. You are clearly here to throw the usual naysayer motto: 4 years late, financial collapse, SQ42 won’t be a thing.

Pledges are of the same trend than last year which was the best pledging year ever. We are still waiting for the infamous collapse 90 days top for sure back in 2015 and I did address your point: Alpha, PTU then stable PU till next patch. You can’t stand it? Wait for a more stable version, Beta or release. No problem.

We know a bit about those misleading prophecies of the doom and “drama”… by the way SQ42 beta in Beta in 5 quarters which mean not release before probably two others quarters… Another “drama” in perspective :)

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Lord Shua

Salvage was suppose to be 3.2 then 3.3 then 3.4 then 3.5 now 3.8 or 3.9. Mining still doesn’t work and its been in for a year. 3.4.3 live was anything but stable. Do you understand what the word stable means? Now tell the people that a casual computer will run it just fine as well. Keep misleading them. Lets talk facts not rhetoric. Mmmkay

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Joe Blobers

Mining is working (phase 0) more gameplay is on roadmap.

By pledging to this project, I was not looking for a polished game during Alpha… just because it never happen. Never. Same for stable, like an Alpha of a game in development can be. Working for hours, sometimes minutes.

Define casual computer. OCS double or triple fps. This is an improvement over previous patch.

Lets talk about facts not rhetoric about someone looking to play a polished game while still in Alpha phase, especially during a new patch.

deekay_000
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deekay_000

i have to ask, why do you think mining doesn’t work for the past six months? what basis do you have for this belief?

it has been crashy on some moons in arccorp system in 3.5 ptu but there are whole orgs that do pretty much nothing but mine every night in live since it was introduced.

early building blocks of salvage have been progressively added as well.

deekay_000
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deekay_000

you sound like you get your entire knowledge of the game from wanna be influencers.

idk when you supposedly played with me or how you think you know me. lol.

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Lord Shua

Lol you got all the white knight answers even playing the you know nothing cards. Anyways keep it up. I was on the PTU just 2 nights ago with you. My names not the same silly. Anyone that wants to have fun should wait at least a year. There is no reason to buy now as it’s far from any kind of polished. Go buy a $45 starter and you’ll see it’s not close to being playable. Simple game loops sure, but there is no game.

deekay_000
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deekay_000

idk how playing on the same server or possibly happening to pvp against each other means playing with each other or knowing each other in the slightest.

based on your youtube channel you play a few hours on ptus only and jump to wild conclusions based on what more popular youtubers feed you.

based on your youtube channel you should consider focusing your energies on more positive and productive endeavours than whatever it is you think you’re doing now.

also consider that i am not being a white knight about this game at all, just being a regular guy player, and that w/e bs you’re into you are in too deep if you find yourself claiming to know people you merely played on the same server one time in a test session.

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mysecretid

I’ll wait until Massively poster deekay posts his assessment of what’s coming. He’s become my “player in the game ” Star Citizen commentator, mostly because he avoids both the hype, and the anti-hype, and simply comments on the game as he finds it, day-to-day.

deekay_000
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deekay_000

natalya is both right and wrong about the state of the ptu atm – while it can be stable and fairly pleasant for hours on end barring some annoying things here and there which helps alot to know how to avoid as many as possible i guess in advance… it can also happen unexpectedly that they do w/e backend tests or w/e they are doing and seems to be holding things up (or maybe not all) where the game becomes pretty unplayable or constant disconnects for hours on end – or go down altogether.

beyond that this ptu is unprecedented in nature. anytime we’ve had extensions to the test dates like these they’ve been pretty communicative about it. instead we’ve had the test date roll over twice with not much word on what’s going on there beyond that it should be back up (and at one point when they disabled ptu copies they didn’t mention when it came back it was sort of accidentally discovered).

the patch is very fun when it’s working nicely tho. even without the ai working and such. with ai working gets even better even if the ai is borderline easy mode.

deekay_000
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deekay_000

just to clariy, the ptu copying being disabled was communicated in the patch notes. but them coming back online was not well communicated or at all really.

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mysecretid

Thanks, deekay. I really wasn’t expecting you to reply here, I was merely speaking in general — but your comments and level-headed honest assessments are always appreciated — especially since Star Citizen news is usually so fraught with melodrama these days!

I guess you’re just like the Batman — you appear where you’re needed! :-)

Thanks, pal,

StuartGT
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StuartGT

I think you’ve done fantastic :)

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Lord Shua

They didn’t communicate anything. Only after extending the PTU did they then give an announcement. Anyone that plays knows PTU needs 2-4weeks more. Tried mining in the last 6+ months? You constantly crash to desktop. Tried any delivery missions, they 90 % of time don’t work for last 6 months. Oh it goes on this way for every game loop you might each nti play.

deekay_000
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deekay_000

i have tried mining in teh past six months. in 3.4.x actually and it was fine then. and it was pretty fine in 3.3.x before that when it was introduced too. i’ve seen reports of it being crashy in 3.5 ptu but 90% of the people i’ve seen giving feedback on it are from the same org (was briefly a member of this particular org so i recognize their names) and i am aware they brigade their mining feedback.

delivery missions have been a mixed bag in recent times. but they’re pretty polished in PTU now afaik, outside of some issues with boxes sinking through cargo areas of some ships – which seems related to the ongoing server issues they seem to be trying to pinpoint and fix which seems to be the primary blocker of this ptu.

oh i know all the problems with the “gameloops”(lol), not sure you do.

trading is some what iffy in 3.4 and prior so far due to server stability – it’s been alot better in 343 tho than it was precviously thanks to better see. but if you know your runs and such. same with smuggling, ofc.

combat missions and other related have had various bad states of ship ai since 3.3, but is one of the focuses of 3.5 ptu and has been at times working nicely. the p0revious iterations of the npc bounty system that were working in 3.1 adn 3.2 were turned off for 33 and 34, but are making a big comeback in 35. this has been extensive point of testing that is often confused by testers.

ground ai is currently in a bad state in 35, as part of the ongoing server resource constraint issues. there were minor issues with it in 34 but mostly it’s fine evne if the ai are a bit slow sometimes.

PU pvp related activities have all been thriving pretty heavily since 33, and overall ship weapon and ship gear balances are getting a huge focus of the 35 ptu despite fears teh the map is too big now and too many drug labs – oh that’s right smuggling got a big expansion in 35 which is also getting continued focus testing.

we know they are testing all of these things because these are things they actually are communicating to us about.

beyond that they didn’t announce any roll overs after teh fact, baior or w/e just confirmed he was looking into it and confirmed it was fixed after in the ptu channel the first time it happened, and i don’t think said anything at all the 2nd time.

deekay_000
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deekay_000

anyways you sound like you’ve never done an sc ptu before with statements like this:

PTU needs 2-4weeks more.

it’s been worse than it is now and they’ve launched. it’s been worse than the worst public ptu patch of this milestone and they’ve deployed to live the next day and it’s been great in live.

and not to be mean, but the past six months of start citizen have been by far it’s most pleasant and playable across the board, including mining trading/smuggling and delivery missions. not saying they’re ready for launch yet (LOL) but early access live deployment?

w/e is holding up this PTU going live, it’s clear they are looking for something specific to change from a bad state to a good state on an extended basis or looking for the root cause of the bad state affecting most of these things.

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Lord Shua

Although I know and played with deekay hes putting a shine on things.

deekay_000
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deekay_000

have you know? and do you now? how would i know you by then?

i recognize your memes tho. lol

Godnaz
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Godnaz

I like Proboscis monkeys that post satire memes.

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Hikari Kenzaki

The characterization of this seems unnecessarily negative.

It was always intended to go to all backers on PTU first as happens with every release. It’s unfortunate that the original article misinterpreted “Available to all backers” as synonymous with “Live.” as they are not the same.

Frequent wipes happen on the live server as well.

Pretty much everything else, Natalyia covered.

deekay_000
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deekay_000

eh the press releases were premature and read in such a way that it very well would be read as live that weekend but weasely enough to get out of it.

they could also do a little bit of that open development .jpg by giving us some heads up with what’s going on here.

wipes happen a lot less frequently on live and despite what others post on the comments here people do actually enjoy the present gameplay loops to farm them out over the course of milestone period.

it’s like you feel it’s negative that people wanna play the game. and i feel people are pretty understanding about what’s going on, it’s just that we can only guess at that becuase well -1 open development points for CIG on this one.

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Hikari Kenzaki

nvm, not worth arguing over

deekay_000
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deekay_000

i mean what do you want them to spin it as? that there aren’t dissapointed backers that PTU is still ongoing? that there wasn’t backers dissapointed with the way the comms were handled at the end of the month?

i think people are pretty understanding despite these things, but it is what it is. and CIG doesn’t help themselves by teasing it with emails – of which many people go multiples different emails this test period so far teasing imminent w/e.

they should’ve specified ptu access for all backers. they should throw us a bone with what’s holding up live if they’re going to tease in emails.

if there’s confusion and frustration here it’s CIG that have written the cue cards in such ways to illicit those reactions. i mean jeez, just be clear! and stop teasing so much!

deekay_000
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deekay_000

i should point also that this would be dissapointing situation with the comms from any other game as well.

i think depending on the publisher/studio a situation like this with another game would be hell and fury from teh high heavens and a brigade of every blog and vlog and critic and influencer from here to taipei would be all over that for fresh ad money. i think the reporting here is pretty on the level honestly.

i’ve seen some of the vlogs that people post in teh comments of some games on this site and the titles alone are sensational af over lesser evils than the fairly mundane but news worthy occurence here.

StuartGT
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StuartGT

And here too – you’ve done fantastic :)

deekay_000
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deekay_000

just want to add i guess that they aren’t radio silent or anything.

they’ve got a guy in the ptu chat every day taking notes from people testing, asking about specific bugs/issues/etc and occasionally reminding people it’s not a general chat channel.

but in terms of what’s holding up this milestone deployment to live, what’s going on with the test period date rollovers (knowing the dates there are abitrary to begin with, which alot of backers/testers do not) and so on, in the context of emails and press releases and such teasing imminent release of one kind or another is… understandably frustrating for alot of folks.

we got alot of active players in orgs and such that do monthly events, and some of those events are being postponed and canceled or at least in limbo just because we don’t really have the faintest clue beyond pulling shit out of our asses and it spreading around like a hot rumour on a cold finnish night.

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Lord Shua

LMAO based on my YouTube channel. LMFAO I upload every little game clip and every time I play, right and you know it. Jesus more of the Star Citizen misleading magic!! Tell me how do you know I upload everything to YouTube? How do you know if I play I will upload it to YouTube. Fuck YouTube and the 14 hours to upload a small video. God really all your gonna do use liberal style ad hominen attacks shows a clear lack of ability to credibly defend the game.

deekay_000
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deekay_000

just gonna say, from your posts here you don’t sound like you play the game. you sound like you get your information about the game second hand at best. your youtube channel indicates you play at all.

tell us more how you know me and how you play with me bc you happened to be on the same server as me one time.

also try not uploading 90 minute unedited vids and it won’t take so long to upload. jesus dude.

as for personal attacks… um dude, all of your posts in this comment section are attacking me and calling me a white knight with third party information you clearly don’t understand as your only argument, and then you add to that that you know me and played with me because you saw me in in game chat or something? okay dude okay.

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Lord Shua

The game, or lack there of is insanely boring. Think Farmville 2019 but with much less to do. like 99% less to do. You can get into all kinds of vehicle, but doing anything other than flying can and will cause issues. Especially if you try to do a mission.

deekay_000
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deekay_000

one would have to play more than an hour every few months during test server periods to get an honest picture of that.

but suit yourself, go fixate on something else. no one cares about games you find boring and don’t play.

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Natalyia

The first few PTU patches are certainly not for the faint-of-heart, even by Star Citizen standards :) By the time it goes to all backers, though, it’s largely a matter of which bugs you want to live with, the bugs in live or the bugs in PTU.

As for wipes, the PTU gives you access to nearly everything flyable in the game, and 5 million credits. You’ll have more toys to play with there than you will on live, certainly. And every major patch (and some minor ones) wipe the database anyway.

And the download? If you don’t want to keep access to live, you can just download the launcher, rename your live folder, and all you’ll get is the new stuff. Or copy it if you’ve got the drive space. Then do the reverse when it goes live. There will be patches to download more often than live, certainly, but those are (by and large) quite small – in effect, all you’re doing is waiting to download that data until it goes live.

So while it’s certainly OK to say “I’ll wait for it to be live”, “wipes and dozens of gigs of files” aren’t really reasons for doing so.

It’s a couple of hoops to play in the PTU, but it’s not a daunting task, and there are some nice benefits to go along with all the not-so-nice new bugs.

deekay_000
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deekay_000

“wipes and dozens of gigs of files” aren’t really reasons for doing so.

this is pretty valid reason for many folks who participate in testing via playing live.

and while i feel i’ve gotten lucky with bugs compared to others i’m still affected by some frustrating if not necessarily gamebreaking bugs.

live is 110% early access state even if it’s relatively pleasant and enjoyable the past several months. ptu can be enjoyable in windows depending on tolerance for wonkiness, but has a tendency to spiral into endless 30k errors, ramps and elevators killing you, dying suddenly when jumping to quantum, asphyxiating becuase ships don’t supply some player characters with oxygen etc etc that can be quite reasonably frustrating to even those willing to deal with the usual level of wonkiness in live.

if you’re chomping at the bit to try the new fm or try one of the testable ships for free then by all means – as long as you know the score, but i wouldn’t recomend it willy nilly to anyone at all.

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Hikari Kenzaki

I’m pretty sure that’s what we’re going at. That PTU isn’t something you should just jump into, but you can.

deekay_000
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deekay_000

natalya sounds like she’s making a sales pitch to get warm bodies into the ptu.

there have been worse patches post all backer invites than there were between evo and wave2. there is likely to be worse patches again.

yes anyone who has a gamepackage and money spent on that account can jump in (ie if you’ve only been gifted a package you need to buy at least a skin or w/e to have some cash spent on that specific account) but really just as often as it is plesant, it’s otherwise.

but let’s be real here, it’s foolish to oversell the state of the ptu right now. and potentially in the coming hours and days. it might be great to play right at this moment or a particular time of day, but that quickly changes hour to hour over the course of most days since wave 2 was released.

StuartGT
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StuartGT

Whoa.. here too? You’ve definitely been fantastic :)

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Natalyia

Not so much “making a sales pitch” as “If you want to try it out, there’s no reason not to”. Maybe I should have emphasized the “which bugs you want to live with” part.

Possibly a factor is how I play Star Citizen. I log in to play around with it – not expecting to accomplish anything in particular. If I do, hey – cool. But counting on something working right is just asking for the alpha (or bored other players) to come along and cause things to go kablooie.

3.4 (live) is at the end of its “patch life” – the most-annoying bugs fixable in that branch have been fixed. 3.5 is new and not-ready-for-live (by whatever metric they use.) They both have bugs, but they’re not usually the same ones.

If you want to hop in and see what happens, the all-backer PTU is a fine place to do so. If you’re counting on a particular something to work right on any given patch, you’re asking for it. But then, I’d argue you’ll still be asking for it when 3.5 goes live. :)

deekay_000
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deekay_000

isn’t it interesting that up above someone claims i’m “putting a shine on things”?

for alot of stuff i personally do and plan to do in 35, ptu is fine outside of the wipes. and i get plenty of content just pew pewing people or ai or w/e

but for alot of folks it’s not working great. so there’s that.

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Natalyia

*shrug* There’s people who reflexively hate on anything Star Citizen. Nothing about it, or even tangentially connected to it can be in any way positive. Ever. And anyone who thinks otherwise is “putting a shine on things” or worse.

I’m not sure if the “Star Citizen will be the savior of all gaming” folks are worse, but at least they’re in their happy place. :)

I do think that the 3.5 announce was poorly worded by CIG “Alpha 3.5 is available now to preview for all backers” would have been a lot better. If you’re not following the game closely, you won’t know (or care) about the PTU, and will be going “huh? My launcher still says 3.4”

Not sure if one of the bugs blindsided them, or if the extra instrumentation in the PTU builds is both really helping and wouldn’t work in the live environment so they’re keeping it in PTU, or what. But it sure feels like they didn’t expect it to still be in the PTU.

deekay_000
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deekay_000

just want to note that people who casually follow SC do generally have awareness of the PTU – but they don’t know enough about it to know how to parse the information that is actually salient or relevant or have a good idea of what to expect.

which is how you get guys like lord shua above that think the best six months of gameplay the game has ever had is like the worst or something. lol. and also more than a little confused on their time lines of bugs and such.

and yeah agreed, does feel like CIG has not expected to be in PTU this long. idk what mandate was handed to the guys in the trenches on this one that it’s still going. i think the past 3-6 recent ptu patches i played would be, with the usual ptu to live upgrades, great live candidates based on previous experience with PTUs, but i also see some pretty big complaints that look somewhat legit wide that are maybe worth the extra time to pin down.

my only complaint in the scenario is that CIG has been less open dev .jpg than desirable. but i’d still give a word of caution to interested people that it probably is worthwhile to wait for the live deploy. if thye’re already on the fence of giving it a go, any ptu specific bugs (which is common) are not going to help them enjoy the experience as much as otherwise could in a live expereince a few weeks later. and i just dont think it’s prudent to recomend it to the enthusiastic in ptu much less the weary.

deekay_000
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deekay_000

hey wanted to give ya a heads up, 3.5 is being deployed to live apparently. sure you already know this. and sure you already hit up that sweet working ai action tn! wew!

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ichi sakari

they updated the PTU access page by changing the closing date of the PTU window from April 14 to May 5

that’s not to say that May 5 is the new 3.5 live date, but of course the forums got a little spun up about it

it is still somewhat unstable and its good that they delay going live

3.5 is available to all backers as a PTU build, which (as stated in the article) means more wipes and downloads but … in the the PTU one gets access to all of the flyables

35ptu.png
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Tee Parsley

While the SC team seems to be a bit more focused than the past (thanks Deekay), they’ve still bitten off way more than they can chew. It shouldn’t be a shock to anyone that things are late. That’s par for the course.

If they can keep Roberts from screwing things up on whim, perhaps they can make it out of alpha inside a decade.

deekay_000
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deekay_000

not all flyables are available in PTU. more than one may have ordinarily but far from all of them. it’s basically the ships they wanna test. it is a big list too.