Welcome to some more Star Citizen, with Alpha 3.10.2 now LIVE we look to Star Citizen Alpha 3.11 the major Q3 Patch with What we have to Look Forward to, what else might make it into this patch AND what needs urgent fixing or balance at least imo.
When? The Patch is roughly targeted for a end of September Release BUT as we know from how CIG release patches… it should go into PTU testing in September and then will go live as soon as it’s bugs and stability are at an appropriate level with 3.10 that was over a month late for the Live Build.
What’s On The Roadmap?
Cargo Decks – these are facilities within Rest Stops where players can handle all their cargo needs. From dropping off and picking up, buying new cargo equipment, and taking on cargo-related missions.
There is a lot of potential gameplay and features coming with Cargo Decks… tho we don’t know what we are getting exactly in 3.11 with them yet… We know that escort missions will be from here too. You’ll be able to buy and sell, rent space, use it as an area to trade, potentially rent/buy Cargo Ships here. Also these are quite expansive areas and will give players new areas to explore.
Improved Throw & Updates to Interaction mechanics will allow us to pick up items, throw them under or over arm with left and right click… Grenades will also be thrown this way too now. It may be used for various things, distraction, grenade arcs, puzzle solving and more.
UI & HuD Updates will have Elevators moving away from inner thought and buttons and be the new touch screens. You may see updates to other HuDs and UIs in game here too.
Missile Updates – Missiles will now be controlled under a dedicated missile operator mode, which gives players the option to select and fire specific missiles while operating in ships, such as the Vanguard, which allow for different types of missiles and torpedoes.
Hopefully we will see Missile Balance and updates here too as imo they can be spammed too easily, are too cheap and you can reclaim your ship to get them back.
Surrendering – In order to allow players to be arrested without losing their life, they can surrender by coming to a halt and powering down their ships when ordered to by security. Security will halt their attack and arrest criminal players aboard the ship, impounding the ship if owned by a criminal.
I am hoping we may see some updates to piracy & Bounty Hunting gameplay we have seen Less than lethal Weapons like the Preacher Taser in sneak peeks. It’s not too hard to imagine that we will be able to use the drag body mechanics to move bounties to prisoner pods in the near future.
AND though medical gameplay is being planned for early 2021 we do know that CI have been working on Hospitals/clinics) (as respawn locations) & knockdowns.
Sort of connected to this is Death Animations Improvements in 3.11 – Combining updated ragdoll properties with the animation system to make the death reactions of players and NPCs more realistic. This will be achieved by blending death animations with physical ragdoll simulation. I suspect that’s also something that will be used for knockouts too.
Ships wise we have the 100 Series so the 100i, 125a and 135c as starter ships.
And the much awaited Mercury Star Runner which is a multipurpose ship that is also going to be good for cargo and Data running.
It’s unlikely we will have Data Running mechanics in 3.11 and if we did it would almost certainly just be a mission that hinted at it… Though I am excited and looking forward to Data as Cargo when it’s in game and we know that CI have got the UI tools now to build that gameplay loop out.
Could there be Something New & Straight to Flyable? There have been rumors of an RSI Odin Gunship but also it’s likely that CI are building out a Refinery Ship (unlikely for 3.11) and a Xi’An Cargo Ship… Any of those and more are possible to have straight to flyable in 3.11 HOWEVER with the IAE and whatever they have planned instead of CitizenCon so close… I would actually expect them to maybe not have anything extra ship wise in 3.11’s initial release.
New Items wise we have the Behring BR2 Ballistic Shotgun and very interestingly the GP33 Grenade Launcher very much looking forward to seeing that in game.
We are likely to see some New purchasable Items & Gear in shops beyond those 2 FPS weapons too.
Something that could be hugely important is the Server to Client Actor Networking Rework – Improvements to the downstream part of the actor networking responsible for communicating actor state from the server down to clients. This will improve the positioning and movement of other players and NPCs on your client, with improved dead reckoning, helping to reduce perceived lag and instances of rubber-banding.
In addition to Updated Netcode they are also working on lots of backend services.
There are a lot of issues that CI have neglected to bugfix that this is likely to resolve… and depending on its implementation and further updates to SSOCS we could see a much more enjoyable persistent universe experience… plz no more desync and AI issues.
Less 30ks… hopefully too! We won’t know how deep that rework is and how effective until it’s in our hands tho.
AI Updates – This polishing pass contains final work on behaviors and balancing, as well as bug fixing. The overall goal is to improve the look and feel of character combat in the game.
Improving the AI Ship Avoidance system to identify hazardous entities such as heavily guarded zones, etc. and steer clear of peril accordingly.
We do know that they have been working on various other areas of AI from getting them to be able to loot and reload to having more variety spawn when doing missions.
There are some updates to Planetary Updates with Ground Cover Buoyancy – Seaweeds and other ground cover elements on water will simulate buoyancy, floating and reacting realistically to water waves to further enhance the visuals of water on planets.
We are getting Lighting Updates to Landing Zones.
Various Updates to POI and new POI are being worked on tho unconfirmed where they are going to land, we could see:
The Aaron Halon – The Giant Asteroid Field in Stanton
Station & POI Gas Clouds and updates to spacescaping
External Station / EVA Locations & Associated Missions
More Updates to GrimHex we know they are going to be adding it’s racing & gambling gameplay at some point.
Also More Defense Turrets are being built out for stations and POIs too.
In regards to Missions we don’t really have any specifics:
The New Mission Giver at New Babbage Wally’s Bar – Eddie Parr
With this I would also expect to see some New Missions.
Where is the Arlington Gang Idris Combat Mission?
Where is the CitizenCon 2019 New Babbage/MicroTech Mission?
We do know that there are Prison Gameplay Updates that are planned for 3.11 what they will be able to get in for the patch tho remains to be seen. This could range from new ways to escape and missions to do in the prisons.
There are various major bugs that need to be addressed with some major highlights being Desync, AI Spawning, Mission Accessibility & Payout, Missile Balance and Ship Spawning.
Also a little bit more balance love would help.
We know they are working on Flight AND Combat Model Updates and Balance.
We know that Cloud Imperium are currently working on various other features currently and there is a potential that some of them could make Alpha 3.11.
The implied recently as well that they are working on updates to trading and inventory BUT what we will have for 3.11 we don’t know for sure yet. Connected to that is the iCache or Item Cache that’s been worked on for a while too.
Radar & Scanning Updates are a priority BUT we don’t know where they are going to fall yet.
Force Reactions have seen work, this is having your character shaken and moved around while a ship suddenly gets hit or damaged and you and not sitting down.
I think it’s a little too optimistic to expect the Constellation Taurus and P52/P72 Docking/Undocking in 3.11… but it’s possible.
Something else that I am hoping to see in Q3/Q4 is the Gen12 Render – Vulkan Integration.
And that’s it for Alpha 3.11 and what we can expect at the moment, as I said hopefully some of those features beyond what is visible on the Roadmap will get in to the patch.