After making his name with classic titles like Wing Commander and Privateer in the '90s, legendary game designer Chris Roberts left the industry to spend the last decade producing movies, including Lord of War, Lucky Number Slevin, and The Punisher. But today, Roberts announced he's coming back to gaming with Star Citizen. It's an ambitious space-faring MMO that he says will do nothing less than "change the way people perceive games for the PC and... breathe new life into space combat games."
While Star Citizen will be situated in a massively multiplayer sandbox world featuring frequent content updates, the game will also use a Wing Commander-style, offline single-player mode (take that, Diablo III) and support user-generated content and modding tools. With a setting described as "a futuristic version of the Roman Empire," Star Citizen will focus on the dynamic of "citizenship," which has to be earned through civic duty or military service in the game. Roberts writes on the game's newly launched website that he hopes this dynamic will create a tiered social structure where dedicated players can really distinguish themselves from casual players, and where different factions will be in conflict.
Roberts is far from humble about the graphical ambitions for the CryEngine 3-powered game. He says the game will feature "10 times the details of current AAA games." That means characters made up of 100,000 polygons and massive ships containing up to seven million-polygon models. A dynamic zooming system will allow a "range of scale never seen in a game," letting players focus on a kilometer-long carrier or a two-meter-tall character "without a load screen or loss of visual fidelity." The graphical fidelity will continue to scale up as you upgrade your computer components over the years as well: "This is why you’re a PC gamer—you love being on the cutting edge, not stuck in the past!" he writes.
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Article by Kyle Orland (c) Ars Technica - Read full story here.