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10 for the Chairman Episode 38

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Transcript generously provided by Nocturnal_Nick.[1]

Video link provided by the official Star Citizen channel on YouTube. [2]

Questions and AnswersEdit

Question 1 - Shady side of landing zonesEdit

Will Star Citizen landing zones feature the darker establishments that would undoubtedly crop, such as drug dens, illegal casinos and black market traders?

–Sleeping Dragon

Answer 1Edit

Definitely there will be areas in the PU that are much seedier and darker/other side of the law than others. Even in some say, big places like terra, there will be seedier areas, in Terra's case we call it "The Blocks", as another landing area is where you'd do your black market trading, down a dark alleyway or something. Missions that wouldn't be "public" or "kosher" would also be found down there. So those aspects will definitely be around, we'll try and make it as immersive as possible, we won't just have a different landing site that has a screen that'll allow the sale of contraband for example. You might have to go down an alley and knock on a door, you might actually have to look for stuff like that.

Chris Roberts

Question 2 - Jettisoned cargo in instancesEdit

If I'm in an instance and decide to jettison my cargo out of sight before I enter combat, but nobody survives, what happens to the cargo?

–Silent Ruin

Answer 2Edit

What will generally happen is they'll persist for a small amount of time, but if say there's no-one in an instance for a preallocated time period that instance will be closed. So at that point if there was cargo floating around in it, it would go away. So if you barely survive, or if someone else came along before the instance is shut down that cargo would be there, but once it closes it'll be gone. But we can't really start to simulate every piece of cargo and have it have it's own persistence to keep these instances open independent of you, because that could get pretty sticky pretty quickly. In this case I'd say if you decided to "hide" it somewhere, try not to die or perhaps have some friends nearby to come and grab it for you before the instance closes.

Chris Roberts

Question 3 - Trading marketEdit

I love trading and being a market tycoon (Freelancer changed my life BTW) and I'm just wondering what the market in SC will be like. Will the market carry most/all items in the game? Will prices be player driven? Can players only make profit by transporting goods to another system or can they buy low/sell high right where they are?


Answer 3Edit

So the market and what's available will depend on what people want to sell and what people want to buy on each different planet/landing location/city. It'll be very unlikely that everything will be available in all places, in fact that definitely won't happen. Some bigger places like Earth/Terra will probably have a wider selection, places like Earth probably have a lot of demand for manufactured things, but much of that manufacturing will have moved off-planet. Terra is probably similar but has more manufacturing capability etc. One of the keys to trading in SC is buying or making stuff and taking that to a place that might need it to sell higher. I want to enforce the mechanic that makes you fly around and visit the universe, so you won't be able to get every thing at any store, so there might be a really great manufacturer of ballistic weapons at this one particular planet, you'll have to go there to get that brand. Perhaps there's a business opportunity in buying a lot from that place and maybe selling them on a place like Terra, where prices would be higher. The economy will be partially player driven, so if you DO buy a lot of these weapons and sell them on Terra as the supply increases and demand is satisfied prices will change to be lower to reflect that. So there will be an effect of player actions on the economy, it won't be OVERBOARD, we have a large universe simulated with millions of NPCs and the player base will be a portion of that, so there's no way (hopefully) that players could completely unbalance the market, as the plan is for them to make up about 10% of the market where the rest is AI. So a large enough portion that they will definitely be able to affect local economies/prices. Generally you'd have to transport stuff to another system to turn a reliable profit, though that doesn't mean you'd have to do it yourself necessarily, you could hire another person or NPC to do it for you and just stay on a planet and run a trading empire without going anywhere, but probably a little boring.

Chris Roberts

Question 4 - Endurance racesEdit

Will you guys consider having a long distance endurance race for larger class ships like Constellations. For example a race across a section of the galaxy with specific check points along the way where you would have to make a pit stop to repair and fix your ships.


Answer 4Edit

Yeah! That's a great idea, and I know there are a few long distance rallies like that. It could potentially be fun, I don't know whether it's necessarily a Constellation race, but perhaps. Certainly could be an "info-runner" style race. One of the keys of SC is that we're really keen on having a lot of roles to play that aren't sort of the standard trading/fighting ones. That's why we're doing the racing mode, we're looking at things like salvage mechanics/mining mechanics, and info-traders/runners. Even search and recovery, and having all of that makes it a much richer world, and a funner place for people to play, much more varied than you'd had before.

Chris Roberts

Question 5 - Drag on shields in atmosphereEdit

Are shields intended to function within an atmosphere? If so, do they create drag?


Answer 5Edit

I would say that shields generally would function inside an atmosphere, I don't know if they'd necessarily create drag. The idea with shields is they're much more for absorbing energy and not so much for preventing matter. It's the reason ballistic weapons have some their energy/velocity leeched from them but still penetrate, where energy weapons are absorbed until the shields go down. So armour is built for the ballistic weapons. So slower moving mass/objects it doesn't really stop, which I'd think means atmosphere passes through so no drag really.

Chris Roberts

Question 6 - Planetside dangersEdit

What dangers can we expect to see planetside when riding a rover or other vehicles?


Answer 6Edit

Don't know yet Harlot! A longer term plan is add some really fun PvE style content on some planets, not something that's day 1, but we want to have some places you can go and explore. Perhaps even procedurally generated planet surfaces with the equivalent of a random dungeon generator, maybe exploring ancient alien ruins, with perhaps some cool alien artefact, or some creatures you get to fight etc. So longer term we definitely want to do that, and create content for places like down on a planet, or in a space station, or asteroid base or something. That's in our development plan, though this might not be in day 1 or complete 1.0 version of the game. But we have a great product path with all of your support so we've got years and years and years of work to make this game bigger, better and more interesting as we go along. I'm obviously really excited by it all, I mean, it's awesome making this great world/universe that we can spend a lot of time in.

Chris Roberts

Question 7 - Player bounties on multi-crew shipsEdit

How will player bounties be handled in multi-crew ships? If a gunner destroys a friendly ship will the captain be held accountable?


Answer 7Edit

Yeah, I think that bounties, reputation etc will be tied to the ship essentially. So the captain of the ship is the one that's ultimately responsible for it. I think we'll have some mechanic, like we will for organisations (probably even the same, just think of the ship crew like a very small organisation) of course there are ways to share money/revenue/fees and bounties etc. I mean, if you're in a ship and you fire on a police craft you'll be held accountable for the actions as a ship, so be careful who you crew with, make sure they're not trying to get you in trouble!

Chris Roberts

Question 8 - Ship support for FPS missionsEdit

Are we going to be able to give air/space support for FPS missions and/or planet-side war zones?


Answer 8Edit

So right now, no. We don't really have plans for it, but you will in the way that if someone's going to board another ship, you'll have to go in there and take out the fighter cover, and maybe the anti-ship guns so the boarding ship can get past them to land. So I guess you'll give space/air support for FPS missions in space, but for planet-side maybe it'll be a longer term feature/goal. Ultimately yes, that'll be a very cool thing to do, but it's not going to be happening anytime soon, but who knows what we'll be doing with it in 5-6 years time!

Chris Roberts

Question 9 - NPC AI varietyEdit

How much variation will there be in AI response? If I have a random encounter with a group of AI pirates, will they ever choose to run rather than attack? If I have killed half their team, will they try to disengage and cut their losses?


Answer 9Edit

Yeah, we are trying to have some fun/more human-like AI, so I definitely think there will be cases where the AI will chose to flee rather than fight you, perhaps if your reputation is really strong, or they really feel like you've got them outgunned. If the tide is turning and you've taken out half their strength they might re-evaluate and turn to run. Kythera is the middleware we're using and being developed hand in hand with SC, which is going to be really good for that. Tony Zurovek was the lead AI programmer for Ultima 7/8, is overseeing the persistent Universe so he's got some really good/cool ideas about how we're going to make everything work well AI wise.

Chris Roberts

Question 10 - Internal ship destructionEdit

If I am being boarded, can I use a vehicle's mounted weapon to defend myself? If so, can I then accidentally harm my own ship from inside?


Answer 10Edit

Well I think that if you had a vehicle inside, that had a mounted weapon on top, and there was enough room to use it yes you absolutely could try to defend yourself with it, there's no reason why you couldn't use a vehicle inside say, your bigger ship. But yes, you could end up harming your own ship. That's true as well for FPS gunplay, so if you were setting off grenades or shooting or whatever you're going to have to be careful where you do it, because if you do it near a window or an airlock or something you might end up blowing it out, and that.. wouldn't be very good. Which is cool, I think it's nicely realistic.

Chris Roberts




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