For the first time in several years, Cloud Imperium Games decided to share more detailed details about Squadron 42 during the latest CitizenCon event which went live yesterday. During an extensive interview, Chris Roberts and the game director behind Squadron 42 revealed many new game mechanics that will also be coming to Star Citizen.
At CitizenCon 2952, Cloud Imperium Games officially unveiled a new flight system coming to Star Citizen in Alpha 4.X. The new flight system will be divided into two different sections. SCM or Standard Control Mode will be used primarily in combat and QCM or Quantum Control Mode will be used for traversal. Currently, one of the main issues with Star Citizen is that ships feel much faster than they should in combat situations, which makes it very difficult to target enemies, especially if you’re using cannons. rail rather than missiles. The new flight system solves this particular problem.
With the new system, when you’re in SCM mode, your ship will be slower, but you’ll have better control over it, and you’ll be able to maneuver much easier. SCM mode will allow players to access all of their ship’s combat-related abilities, including missiles, cannons, bombs, and shields. On the other hand, when you switch to MCQ mode, it increases your speed and unlocks a new boost system called Quantum Boost. While Quantum Travel will remain a key ship feature for long voyages, Quantum Boost will be an improved version of the current ship boost that will provide high speed for a short time. Quantum Boost will have a charge bar and last less than 30 seconds. With Quantum Boost, you can point your ship anywhere and activate the boost instantly, allowing rapid travel to a point that may be tens of thousands of miles away. It’s also a perfect way to escape from a combat situation, rather than trying to use the normal Quantum Travel which has to coil up and then lock onto a target, which is a very time-consuming process.
That said, there is a big risk in switching to MCQ mode. Whenever you activate MCQ mode, all of your combat-related options will be disabled. You will even lose your shields. The developers call this a risk/reward system between modes. It will always challenge you to stay and fight until the end, or turn off your battle mode and escape.
Moving on to the AI system, Chris Roberts explained that the current terrible AI situation in Star Citizen is the result of an old development system that is not able to upgrade at the moment. The CEO of Cloud Imperium Games mentioned that this will never be the case with Squadron 42 as they are building everything from scratch for this game in the case of UI.
According to the game director, Squadron 42’s AI will act on a systemic basis, meaning enemies will have their own logic, and they’ll decide based on that logic, rather than following a single scripted path.
In one case illustrated by the behavior of the AI in Squadron 42, we saw two enemy soldiers who saw the player moving behind a box for a fraction of the time. This causes enemies to become suspicious and search the area. On their way, they search every corner and check every interactive element, and they share this information with each other, which saves them from doing the same thing or double-checking the same corner.
According to the developers, this is a systemic behavior, and it works in all places and situations, which is why it is much better than a scripted AI system.
Finally, we also got to see a new version of MobiGlass for Squadron 42 that includes a clearer view of messages, logs, missions, and character settings. Chris Roberts revealed that this version of MobiGlass is a military-oriented version that will be used for Squadron 42, but an extended version is also in production for Star Citizen covering more areas. One of the big parts the devs didn’t mention, but viewers spotted during the stream, was the ability to pick up a ship remotely, which wasn’t explained, but could be a game-breaking feature. in Squadron 42 and Star Citizen.
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