Star Citizen heralds 2022 as a year of growth, touches on 3.18’s features and update plans for 2023


At the close of 2022, CIG’s Chris Roberts put out another chairman’s letter that looks back at Star Citizen’s last year and ahead to the current year, noting plenty of growth for the former and big plans for the latter.

In terms of last year’s growth, Roberts notes it as the game’s “best year yet,” with over 1M unique users playing for over 46M hours, a 50% rise in daily active users when compared to 2021, and over 240K monthly active users. Funding also grew last year, as the game raised an additional $100M since November 2021 through crowdfunding, bringing the total player contributions to over $500M. Most of the funding came from new accounts, with over 800K new players signing up and 70% of them becoming paying players.

The letter touches on current events, mainly the testing and features of alpha 3.18. A lot of hay is made with regards to the persistent entity streaming tech that the patch is bringing that will introduce more persistence to the game, while other portions of the build like salvaging, spaceship racetracks, and additional POIs are also being tested. Firming up PES is the primary focus of the dev team and also the primary reason the alpha’s release is sliding into January.

Finally, the letter once again outlines the “road to 4.0,” starting first with a “hardening” of PES tech, then moving on to additional tech work needed to start server merging, specifically adjusting the servers’ replication layer and then applying static server meshing. After that, the Pyro system is scheduled to open to players. Roberts notes a launch window for server meshing and Pyro’s release in the fourth quarter of this year but then immediately backpedals by calling out the “complicated engineering work that involves a completely new paradigm” that could see release timing change.

Other feature plans for 2023 include bounty hunting, persistent hangars for ships, an item resource system for ships, and many of the features that were first shown off at last year’s CitizenCon like updated MFDs, new maps, FPS scanning, and new traversal. None of these features were given any release windows, vague or otherwise.

source: official site, thanks to Mothballshow for the tip!
Longtime MMORPG gamers will know that Star Citizen was originally Kickstarted for over $2M back in 2012 with a planned launch for 2014. As of 2022, it still lingers in an incomplete but playable alpha, having raised over $500M from gamers over years of continuing crowdfunding and sales of in-game ships and other assets. It is currently the highest-crowdfunded video game ever and has endured both indefatigable loyalty from advocates and immense skepticism from critics. A co-developed single-player title, Squadron 42, has also been repeatedly delayed.
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