Star Citizen will now invite players into its PTU based on their activity in an effort to stress test builds


For the past several years, access to the PTU builds of Star Citizen has gone out in waves – that’s nothing new – but the activity of those player waves apparently hasn’t been terribly helpful to Cloud Imperium Games, and so the studio has decided to restructure how PTU waves are handled, with priority being given to active players over those who simply pop in for a brief moment to look at what’s new and never return.

The first four waves of PTU invites will take into account the top active players rated by hours in the previous two major patch cycles of the alpha, with the first wave inviting the most active and successive invite waves descending downwards from there. The final wave is when everyone who has bought into the alpha will be invited in, while those who are subscribers or other higher paid levels will continue to get access to PTU waves based on their money spent. The Evocati test group will also continue on as normal.

CIG posits that this new approach to PTU invites will put alpha releases through their paces more effectively:

“[M]any players only log in once per PTU phase to briefly inspect the latest features or new ships before waiting for the live release. This led to very high player loads in the first hours of each wave release, combined with comparatively high server costs and download provisioning, but not the sustained playtesting we would have preferred. As a consequence, towards the end of a PTU phase, we sometimes lacked the necessary numbers of testers to put the servers under pressure once the most significant bugs had been fixed.”

In other SC news, this week’s Inside Star Citizen video is live, which takes a closer look at the work of the VFX team. The digest doesn’t really provide any details on upcoming alpha features, but it does provide a very brief look at where the game’s fire propagation technology is at from at least a visual standpoint.

sources: official forums, YouTube, thanks to Felix 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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