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Star Citizen’s NEW ROADMAP UPDATE Focuses on Server Meshing & Missions

Welcome to a Star Citizen Roadmap Update Summary for the Middle July 2021.

Cloud Imperium said
“This week we have a wealth of new deliverables as the downstream teams’ schedules have been set for Q3. As a reminder, since these teams are largely reactive to upstream, their schedules on the roadmap only show one quarter into the future, as opposed to upstream’s four quarters. Additionally, some increased visibility on the tasks needed for Server Meshing and Persistence have been added to the Network and Persistent Tech teams.”

There are 2 New Features that have been added for Alpha 3.17:

Persistent Hangars – Players will have the ability to have their own Persistent Hangars. This will bring changes to the Cargo gameplay loop by allowing players to buy cargo and send it to their hangars, then maximize their cargo storage space by allowing them to pack the goods themselves. Gone will be the days of getting booted from your hangars because you were there for too long. To exactly what extent this will be physicalized remains to be seen, I would expect these hangars at LZs to be faked (especially in their 1st implementation)… so you’d be able to take elevators to your hangar and friends could also go there BUT they don’t exist when you are not around… but you’d be able to store assets at these areas and customize them too.

Outpost Homestead – Independent & Outlaw – A small home for AI to live and shelter. They consist of a central hub and a few optional internal and external modules. They provide the basic necessities to support a small group of people for an indefinite amount of time. These are expected to be steps towards player bases and more POI gameplay as well.

The Progress Tracker has had a huge amount of updates this time… this shows features that CI are planning on working on over the next few quarters BUT it doesn’t commit them to any particular patch for release at this stage… 

Rescue/Transport Mission – Using AI follow behaviors to create missions where players transport customers from one location to another, along with prototype missions where player must rescue imperiled clients from dangerous situations and escort them to safety.

Infiltrate/Defend Mission – Underground Facilities are the first place to benefit from the addition of spawn closets which allow us the expansion of the suite of missions that take place there. Missions range from all-out assaults to situations where you may be able to complete objectives without the need to engage in combat at all, and include both lawful and unlawful versions.

Comm Array Mission Improvements along with totally new missions set across and around the Comm Arrays, with a specific focus on PvP content. It’s possible that this could also be the return of Tessa Bannister… Maybe?

AI – Trolley Push & Pull – This will be the first pass on implementing the ability for NPCs to use trolleys and trolley-like entities. They will be able to move in the environment pushing and pulling those entities to place them from/to specific locations. 

AI – Ground Vehicles – This is the first pass on supporting NPCs controlling and driving ground vehicles. These 2 features require the implementation of a new pathfollower that can take care of the vehicle’s physical abilities to transform the NPCs movement request into actual movement AND take into consideration external forces that needs to be balanced to achieve the desired speed.

AI – Unmanned Missile Turrets – to improve defense of green zones. These should give long range and additional threat to criminals, campers, griefers and anyone that would do a LZ harm

New AI – Medical behaviors. A patient will arrive at the hospital and check themselves in at a terminal then wait to be seen and called to a room for a diagnosis. The patient can then see doctors and nurses tending to sick and injured people. Other patients will wait to be called. Doctors and nurses can be seen washing their hands, checking medical stock and dispensing medicine. Some patients will be asleep in medical beds.

AI – Leisure behavior – is a segment of the new civilian behavior system, controlling how the AI behaves when they have free time during their schedule. AI will create a lifelike environment by relaxing and having fun, using the things that are available to them, such as exercise equipment, jogging routes, TV monitors, seats/benches, and their mobiGlas.

AI – Dancing – again a segment of our new civilian AI leisure behavior. After work, some civilians will have the urge to spend time at a nightclub and dance the night away. This will bring new life and movement to in game bars/clubs.

AI – Navigation Links – Ladders/Ledge Grab – Implementing special adapters to allow the navigation system to be informed of connections offered by ladders or ledge grab markup.

The Fire Hazard system will track fire & temperature on static and dynamic objects. For the initial release of fire, the feature will be setup on a select few vehicles.

They are Building out a workflow to allow artists and designers to work with Destructible Objects.

Laser Trip Mines explosive gadgets that use light beams as triggers. When someone or something comes into contact with the beam, the mine goes boom.

Frontier Style Clothing for players and NPCs.

Completing the Female Player Head with a polish and rigging update.

DGS Mesh Node – This implements multiple Dedicated Game Servers (DGS) and clients connected to the same instance of the Hybrid service, and allows DGS to exchange entities and authority over them. This is essential for Server Meshing.

Shard Manager – This is responsible for creating a shard in the EntityGraph database, ensuring it is “seeded” with an initial population of entities, communicating with matchmaking so that players can join a shard, and talking to provisioning services so that a Hybrid and Dedicated Game Servers (DGS) can be assigned to a shard. Icache has basically become the entity graph now. So this is tech along with Mesh Node makes use of icache appropriately.

Inventory Unstow – Allowing the fetching of an item from an inventory and placing it into a Shard. For example, a ship loaded with cargo being unstowed, removes the ship and it’s associated cargo from the inventory and places them into the game. This work implements moving an item’s persistent data from an inventory into a Shard managed by the EntityGraph, and adding the item to the Replication Layer.

Entity Stow/Destroy – moving an item into an inventory. For example, a ship loaded with cargo being stowed, stores the ship and it’s associated cargo. This removes the items from the Replication Layer, moving its persistent data into an inventory.

Itemport Mod API – This allows tools like the Vehicle Modification App (VMA) to modify ship loadouts inside inventories. I would expect that this is also directly connected to allowing vehicles to spawn or be attached to ships as an item.

Shard Data Query API – This allows gamecode access to common queries against entity graph data.

Free Form Variable API – Blackboard service for gamecode systems to write generic persistent variables.

Maya Live Link – This establishes a link between Maya and the Lumberyard/StarEngine Sandbox Editor. It is primarily meant to give animators the best possible, “what you see is what you get” (wysiwyg) style preview quality by seamlessly integrating the Editor-rendered images in the Maya viewport.

Physical QT Movement – has returned to the Progress Tracker and is scheduled to be worked on in Q3 by the Physics team. This has dynamic QT splines and can drop you out of QT if something blocks your path.

MISC Hull B – The Hull B was originally scheduled to be worked on simultaneously with the Hull A. However additional resources needed to be allocated to the Hull A, therefore they’re temporarily removing the Hull B from the Progress Tracker until it has been rescheduled.