This post is a transcript of Around the ‘Verse: Episode 2.18, material that is the intellectual property of Cloud Imperium Games (CIG) and it’s subsidiaries. INN is a Star Citizen fansite and is not officially affiliated with CIG, but we reprint their materials with permission as a service to the community. INN edits our transcripts for the purpose of making the various show participants easier to understand in writing. Enjoy!
Around the ‘Verse: Episode 2.18 – Key Takeaways
- Free-Fly is coming to a close.
- Last chance to get Star Citizen and Squadron 42 bundled together
- Package is lowered to $40 for current backers, as gifts.
News from Around the Verse
- Working on Cutlass, Scythe, Gladiator, and Gladius optimization.
- Working on Reliant and Scout’s thrusters.
- Work on shield / weapon / projectiles for the components rework
- Doing planning for the next mocap shoot. Looking at adding things to the PU, and the whole project, but with a focus on animations for the Levski landing zone. Scheduling things like drug deals gone wrong.
- Looking to add lots of detail and life with the mo-cap shoots. People getting flu shots, checkups, etc…
- Reviewing Shopping functionality. Buying is in place, looking to start testing soon.
Foundry 42 UK
- Working on the Personnel Manager: a MobiGlas app for managing inventory and clothing.
- Diegetic UI, meaning it exists in the game world.
- Big push on improving the Party system and making it easier to use.
- Currently mocking up concepts for the Holotable redesign.
- Work continues on AI.
- Conversation system being worked on for SQ42, will also be used in PU.
- Lots of production meetings.
- Chris, Tony and Erin are in Frankfurt.
- Plans being made for now, the near future and the rest of the year
ATV Interview with Jason Cole
- Jason Cole, Lead Cinematics Animator at Frankfurt.
- CR went through all the footage taken from the mo-cap shoots, cut it how he wanted it, now animators are animating it all.
- Not all cutscenes will be ‘traditional’ ones, where the game takes control of the camera.
- They’re trying to have lots of cutscenes keep player control; walk around, or even walk out. Still in discussions about it.
- CR wants a ‘fluidity’ where they don’t take the player out of the game often.
- Like the Morrow Tour, they want cinematics to be interactive.
- They use the best tools they can use to keep the player immersed and to tell the best story they can
- RenderG is the MVP for his custom Star Citizen control panel
Around the ‘Verse: Episode 2.18 – Complete Transcript
Sandi Gardiner (SG): Hey everybody welcome back to Around the Verse, I’m Ben Lesnick.
Ben Lesnick (BL): I’m Sandi Gardiner.
SG: This week in the ATV Interview, Jared sits down with Senior Cinematics Editor Jason Cole to discuss his work on Squadron 42.
BL: And the Austin QA team has been sorting out all sorts of whacky bugs with an all new episode of Which Glitch.
SG: But first, the PAX South free fly promotion is coming to a close after this weekend. Don’t miss your chance to fly an Aurora LN, Mustang Delta and Hornet F7C if you haven’t already.
BL: And tell your friends. This is their chance to see the nucleus of Star Citizen.
SG: And that was adding Ben adding Ben.
BL: That’s what it says here.
SG: Also ending this weekend is your chance to pick up Star Citizen and Squadron 42 bundled together for just $45.
BL: and if you’re an existing backer we will lower that price to $40 incase you want to give a package as a gift or just if you want to have two.
SG: Or Valentines.
BL: Yes, please give your girlfriend, your wife, your husband a Star Citizen package.
SG: So don’t miss your final chance to pick up two triple A titles for the price of less than one. Finally this weekend is Valentine’s day and it looks like we’ve received some Valentine’s day cards here at the office.
SG: Yes our favourite fan KinShadow sent a selection of nicely printed Valentines to give out to the team which I did![Hard core Valentine’s day card giving sequence]
SG: Now let’s check in with our studios from around the world in this weeks News From Around The Verse.
News from Around the Verse
Randy Vasquez (RV): Hey guys welcome back to sunny Santa Monica, this is CIG LA. So we have some things going on this week. My name’s Randy Vasquez. This is …
Patrick Salerno (PS): Patrick Salerno. I’m a Associate Tech Artist and, yeah, so anyway …
RV: Alright. So what have we got going on this week? You’ve been working on a few things …
PS: Yeah, so far I have been working on optimisation. We had an Around the Verse segment where I go into a little more detail on it but in summary I’ve been working on a few ships like the Cutlass, Scythe, Gladiator, Gladius: all these ships. Basically bringing them up to standard. Making sure everything’s working, everything looks good and we’re getting the best performance we can.
RV: Nice, nice. So design-wise I know Kirk’s been working on the Reliant Scout’s thrusters; Calix has been working on some new shield designs; and Sherman’s been working on components and getting everything structured there.
In Engineering I know Chad is actually working with Calix and Paul to get the some of the new shield stuff created so we’re working on shield components. Eric has been working on tools for 2.0. Paul has been focusing on tools as well. And then Mark Abent, Bugsmasher, he’s been focusing on weapons and projectiles and everything like that, so a lot of stuff that’s going into the Weapons 2.0/Items 2.0, just getting this stuff upgraded.
RV: So that should be good. We’re out. See you guys. See you in the verse.
Jake Ross (JR): Hey guys Jake Ross here, Associate Producer of the Persistent Universe and I’m here with you this week to talk a little bit about what’s going on here in Austin.
This week we are doing, or rather last week and into this week, we’re doing some planning for the next mocap shoot. There’s some planning in the works for pickups, for various things across the project, but for the PU specifically we’re talking about adding some things for upcoming environments like the Levski landing zone and looking beyond to Hurston. So we definitely want to get some time in with the next mocap shoot being scheduled at Imaginarium. So we’re scheduling in things like drug deals gone wrong, drug deals gone right; we’re scheduling a whole prison scene, so different animations you might find in a prison or a jail, police station, you know: handcuff suspects and officers doing their thing while off duty and on duty. So we’ve got a few things in the works.
We’re also scheduling in some … as we’re going though and placing animations in various scenes we’re noticing a few things that we shot last mocap shoot we probably want add to or fix in the next one, such as, in the medical scene right now we have all these NPCs set up where they are … they’re a little extreme! We’ve got people everywhere just puking out their guts and their sick beyond all belief and we want it to be a little bit more realistic when you walk into a waiting room you don’t always get people … sometimes you do, maybe but you don’t always have people everywhere you see puking out their guts and just writing in agony and things. So we want a little bit toned down ailments to put in our game as well. People who are literally just there to get a flu shot or a check up. So we want to add those in as well. So that’s the planning for the next mocap shoot.
We are also setting up a review of the selling part of the shopping functionality. So we’ve got buying in place: we’re thinking it looks pretty good. We may be at a point pretty soon where we can start testing. But now we’re looking ahead to “okay well now let’s add the selling part, let’s close that loop and go from buying to selling”. So we want to add that too to the next little bit of shopping. And along with that comes inventory and remote storage, in your hangar and in your ship. So we’re breaking down to the designs and answering all the questions that come up as a result of thinking about that.
The last thing I’ll mention is that we’re scheduling a cross-studio playtest for tomorrow. We’re going to be teaming up with CIG LA and taking part in their studio playtest that they’ve been doing over there. So we’re hoping to get some Austin folks in there and try to help QA out as much as we can: banging on the game and just generally getting in and having fun with each other and, you know, we want to be in the verse just as much as you guys so we want try to help coordinate that as much as we can between the Austin and LA studios.
So yeah, that’s all I’ve got for you this week guys. See you around. Thanks.
Foundry 42 UK
Tom Johnson (TJ): Hi everyone, welcome to the UK again.This week I’ve got Matt Lightfoot with me, he’s Associate Producer here at Foundry 42 and he’s going to give you guys a quick update on UI development.
Matthew Lightfoot (ML): Hi guys. So we’ve got plenty of things that are really cool happening in the UI team and one of these things is that Carl our Systems Designer is currently looking at the initial designs of our Personnel Manager which will be another MobiGlas app that will allow you to manage your inventory as well as be able to see your clothes on your character and whereabouts the items are stored on the body. This will be part of the diegetic UI. Diegetic means it is actually in the fictional game world which makes it more immersive and hopefully that will make it so that you guys feel slightly more invested in the Star Citizen world.
We’ve also listened to some of your feedback about the Party system and one of our big pushes in the not too distant future is on improving the Party system, making it easier so you guys can play with your friends and be able to join the games that you want to, in Crusader and in Star Citizen. So hopefully you guys will enjoy that and you’ll see it fairly shortly.
Another thing that we are working on, Carl and Zane are currently mocking up concepts for our Holotable redesign which also came from feedback and also us wanting to be able to enable you guys to customise your ships for Crusader so you can play with all of the cool additions to your ships that you’ve got in your hangar.
TJ: Okay, thanks Matt and that’s it for this week. Okay, so we’ll see you in the verse! Thanks guys. Bye for now.
Brian Chambers: Hey everyone Brian Chambers from the Frankfurt office. This week’s a busy week. As you can see I have the one and only Erin Roberts with me.
Erin Roberts: Hi everyone.
BC: We have a few guys out here from the UK right now. Rich and Rob. They’re focusing mostly on AI right now right?
ER: Conversation system for Squadron 42 firstly but also it will be used in the Persistent Universe.
BC: Yep. In those meetings too, we also brought Tony out from Austin. So kind of have a little pow wow with the three of them. Chris is also here, they’re in meeting, tearing stuff apart, filling up the white board. Also with Francesco here is our Lead AI Programmer. Who else do we have out here?
ER: We’ve got Ian Leyland out here. He’s our Environment Art Director. We’ve actually got some really good meetings going on at the moment. Because obviously Chris, Tony and myself got together and have a bunch of stuff we’re doing and then also we’re just making, not only are we working out the Squadron 42 stuff that we’re finishing off this year, but also just the plan for the PU and the system. We’ve been having a few meetings. We always tend to at the beginning of the year to sort out what we’re going to do, what the plan is for the year, and so we’ve all been meeting together getting this stuff going and it’s been good. It’s been productive actually
BC: Yeah we’re covering a tonne which is cool. One of the things between Frankfurt and the UK is what little over an hour flight? So times where we can, we work remote and we work remote apart really, really well and we’re always messaging and sharing screens and so on but every couple of months we get that opportunity to come together bring in other people we need and really focus down on a few topics for a few days or a week we finally get a lot of traction on things and things move forward a little quickly
ER: Yeah it’s great. Especially getting the people you have here together in a room pretty much. Makes a big difference. There’s only so much you can do with Skype sometimes
BC: Yeah absolutely! As far as production end to me and Erin going over headcount, going over growth, what are our plans today, in two months, in three months, in six months a year from now? We also grew by a couple of people last week, but I think I said that already last week. We have another new guy starting next week. Another Cinematics Animator. Yeah things are rolling along.
ER: It’s kind of fun being in the studio. Just seeing every time I come here another eight guys have joined! You’ve got barely room to sit!
BC: When the guys first started coming in office, Chris and Erin they would come and they’ve been here what five, six times so far? Literally we had a few guys in the corner and they could sit wherever and then they had to kind of move them the next couple of trips, then the next, then the next trip. Which is good. We’re bringing in good solid people fairly as senior staff but it’s people
that know their stuff and are focusing down to help build the game you guys all want that we know will get out to you eventually
ER: It’s also cool for me I get to see some of the cool tech that’s going on here. I’ve seen some of the latest stuff from the procedural stuff, can’t say too much about it!
BC: No! No!
ER: Basically i’ll just tell you it’s looking pretty cool
BC: And that’s cool ‘cause you guys always hear me say that i’m always like “We’re doing cool new. I can’t but we got to..” That’s good
ER: We’re obviously working to get that out to you in upcoming releases as well and I think when people have that and they can fly, land on planets, get out and walk around and do lots of stuff, it’s going to be very, very cool. There’s lot of other stuff going on here. This is really like the entering room for comfort in a lot of ways, lot of the tech comes through here as well and of course we have gameplay from the other offices. But yeah visits going well, about halfway in and probably the next update will probably have some more information about stuff Chris, myself and Tony are all here for the full week and we’ve got some meetings and getting lots of stuff done, it’s great
BC: It’s always good to have you guys out here. Thanks again to all the backers and yeah you’ll hear from us next week
ER: Absolutely great seeing you guys.
ATV Interview with Jason Cole
Jared Huckaby: Thanks guys. On this week’s AtV interview we’re sitting down with Lead Cynematics Animator Mr. Jason Cole. Jason how you doing man?
Jason Cole: Good man how you doing?
JH: Good. Now you to us from the Frankfurt studio?
JH: Lead Cinematic Animator. What?
JC: When I came in, I came in right before CR and Hannis started shooting everything for the Foundry 42 game, the Squadron 42. So from that process they did all the shooting and then when I came on we had to figure out how we’re going to handle the data ‘cause they didn’t know what was going on at the time.
The good thing is that CR ran everything through an editor and cut everything out to how he wanted it. So basically when we get those videos, based off those videos we order that data from Imaginarium and those pieces, and then what I do is basically cut it together and work with Hannis to get the best results for him for the cameras and stuff like that and how he’s going to shoot everything.
JH: Now Hannis is our Cinematics Director?
JH: Together you guys worked on things like the Senate Speech. Did you have anything to do with the the Mark Hamill reveal?
JC: Yeah, we worked on that. That was a very specific thing. It was cool to work on though, ‘cause we kind of had to, not scramble but we kind of had to piece together the animation a little bit more because it was very, it kind of hit us very suddenly. So that was actually kind of nice to do that, it gave us a good working atmosphere, good teamwork when we handled that. Very nice.
JH: When you’re putting together a cinematic, what is your job in that?
JC: It’s like a process right? So what I usually do is; I check the edits. I check CR’s edits, if I have to I confirm anything if I have any questions. The thing is how CR shot it, was in multiple takes. He did multiple takes and he’s taking pieces from each individual take. So what I have to do is take that, put it together and make it one piece so it will flow.
So say if it’s like a proper third person cinematic, I have a little bit more play, we can rely more on cameras so the animation would be a little bit more loose, behind the camera. Say if it’s running real time or if it’s like a player event and it’s all happening real time then it needs to go together well, so that’s what I do with the mo-capping clean it up and all that stuff.
JH: Now one of the more common questions we get is how cinematic will play in the actual Squadron 42 game. My understanding not all cinematics will play the same way. Can you talk to us about the different ways there are cinematics and will play?
JC: We have different levels of cinematics. When I think of cinematics, we have proper cinematics where it’s third person this is like, I want to say five minutes that’s quite long. You’ll see ships third person, you’ll see the player in third person, all the characters in third person, we have full camera control and everything
JH: Like more traditional cutscenes?
JC: Yeah but they’re not all like that though. I think they’re still working through their process of what is more like, we will possibly take control of the camera of the player if it’s something really important and then take control of it that way.
Or there’s other stuff it’s, where it might have a cinematic feel but the player can still walk around completely or possibly walk out depending on how important that, that conversation is to the story.
JH: So for some cinematics we’ll actually have control over our character within the event that’s going on?
JC: Possibly. I mean there’s still discussions about that. But it is definitely something that I think is going to happen. Because CR really wants to have that fluidness of where we don’t take the player out of the game as much.
So that’s the one thing that third person cinematics do is take you out of the game but at the same time too they also tell, it’s a really great way of telling a story. But at the same time too, personally I think if you take the player out of the game too many times, you get disconnected right?
JC: So that’s a thing we’re doing with, when we did the show on the ship and stuff. We were trying to show how everything is connected and the story pieces that are more like adventure-esque where you can walk up to somebody and they’ll talk to you and if you don’t want to talk to them you can just walk off and they might get upset but…
JH: Kind of like The Morrow Tour?
JC: Yeah exactly
JH: It’s an interactive cinematic. In, for lack of a better term, is there a better term?
JC: No I would say like a cinematic experience or a story experience that’s more fluid right?
JH: Ok. I think some people would call them scripted events. Everybody’s got their own terminology for this stuff and kind of thing
JC: Yeah, yeah. It gets complex ‘cause there’s like, scripted events are very specific but that’s what we’re shooting for.
JH: I think what’s most important is that we’re using every tool available to us to tell this story
JC: As much as possible
JH: Yeah whether it’s keeping people in there and immersed or whether it’s using the third party stuff. We’re not going to write off a story telling tool, just on concept along. We’ll use whatever we need to tell the best story.
JC: Exactly, yeah. I think it becomes more, what’s more appropriate for each situation and that’s really cool.
JH: Cool. And where did you come to, before you joined Star Citizen?
JC: Before I came to Star Citizen I was working at CryTek in Frankfurt.
JH: So you’ve come over with quite a few friends I imagine
JC: Yeah I was really surprised when I walked into the office it was like, temporary office so everybody was kind of stuffed in there at Frankfurt.
JH: You came on around May of last year, April May of last year?
JC: Yeah around that time right before they started shooting
JH: It was a very small building
JC: Yeah! But they all seemed very happy and everybody was enjoying what they were working on and it was cool to see what they were working on. So I was like, I don’t know, I like this idea of, I like the scale of it and I like the risk in it. It’s something exciting, something new and everybody’s going in the same direction on this project which is awesome
JH: The scale of this thing is simultaneously daunting and exciting in both measures
JC: Yeah! Yeah definitely. I mean it’s just the cool stuff I see. When they were doing. There was like five or six of us I think, before I came out here on vacation right? And we’re all standing around a desk and basically Dan Troughman is flying in his ship, breaking the atmosphere right? And going in, we’re all just standing there coffee, like, just like “Don’t mess it up Dan, don’t mess it up!”
And he’s like literally flying in landing his spaceship perfectly on this like moon size planet and i’m like “That’s awesome dude. I’ve not seen something like that before”. And you can get out the ship and walk around like all seamlessly and that’s cool
JH: Now it’s important to remember that Jason is here on his vacation! He’s not actually here for work he was visiting the office yesterday and I tapped him right as he was heading out the back door and I’m like “Can you please come back tomorrow and do an interview?”.
So thank you so much Jason for coming in on your day off and taking the time to talk to us about Squadron 42. Back to you guys.
Back to Studio
BL: Thanks guys.
SG: Coming up next, the Austin Quality Assurance team is back with their wacky antics in the return of Which Glitch.
BL: Which Glitch.
Tyler Witkin (TW): Hello and welcome back to Which Glitch. I am Tyler Witkin or Zyloh and I’m joined today by some lovely members of the QA team. Actually you’re not QA anymore are you?
Jeffrey Beardedpeas (JB): No, but joined the turtle club.
TW: Jeffery Beadedpeas was recently promoted to liveops so he’s now our liveops technician. Secretly we just wanted his puns to be on the other side of the building instead of with us.
JB: I still email them.
TW: He does and he has a facebook page, let’s not plug that right now.
JB: [Laughs] Too late!
TW: We also have Robert Calavera. And our newest member, this is your second weekend with us.
Katashina M. (KM): It’s like a week and a half
TW: Katashina and I will not try to say your last name.
Robert Calavera (RC): It’s a long last name.
KM: You got the first part right though, very proud of you.
TW: I can’t say it, how do you say your last name?
TW: No? So it’s been awhile since we’ve been able to do one of these, we’ve been pretty busy with 2.0 and trying to get patches out faster. I’m sure you’ve noticed the daily PTU patches we had coming out and so we haven’t had time to record these, but we found a little free time so what better time to fill it than with some episodes of Which Glitch. So without further ado let’s go ahead and dive in.
TW: Number 5. Hold my beer, I got this. I like how he’s straddling his chair backwards.
RC: That is killer thigh strength I might add.
TW: With his hands crossed it’s like, those stub motorcycle drivers.
TW: Number 4: Zombies.
TW: I actually really like this one.
KM: it’s so creepy
TW: I think the backers actually got to see this on one of our PTU environments
JB: Pretty sure. I wish this video was more in first person, I love how creepy it looks.
KM: It is creepy
TW: I’m coming for you, I’m coming. I like the ballerina jump except he just got stuck that way I don’t know if that’s natural.
RC: In your head.. In your heads, zombies.
TW: Number 3: Welcome to ArcCorp. So this is a QA tradition that we have for all of our patch releases. In this case, this was the patch where we introduced buggies to ArcCorp for the first time and of course what better way than to greet the first player who finished downloading with a set of buggies. It’s just.
TW: A friendly hello, no big deal
RC: Who was it? Josh right?
TW: It wasn’t, Josh was the first guy to come into ArcCorp. This was the next patch that introduced buggies. So you can blame lando for that
TW: Number 2: The Submarine. So I’m pretty sure when he got the Aurora, he did not know it had underwater capabilities and no that does not mean submarine confirmed.
JB: Under concrete capabilities[Singing]
TW: Three songs this episode of Which Glitch[Singing]
TW: I think that’s a new record
KM To be fair you kind of baited him with submarine
TW: I apologize, this will be the last episode of Which Glitch.
KM: And there it goes, flying off.
TW: Because Jeffrey has sung us to death.
TW: Number 1: Tip Toe.
RC: Possibly one of my favourite bugs, we’ve ever had.
TW: Yeah. I like that it just keeps escalating. It’s like that one from the first episode of Which Glitch we did in the FPS level where they were all like acting crazy.
TW: And it’s even better because he’s actually in the metal wing, Ah metal.
TW: Metal wing [Roars]. No, medical wing.
KM: You should uh, get those legs checked out there.
TW: Somebody get this guy a doctor. And those were the 5 bugs for this week. We hope you enjoyed them as much as …
TW: As much as we did, I hope we’ll be back soon with some more, but for now,
Back to Studio
SG: Thanks guys, some of those bugs are both frightening and funny
BL: I don’t know, something about that segment … Bugs me..
SG: And now it’s time for this week’s Ben VP.
BL:Well that was just last week, I don’t like things every week.
SG: No comment. And now it’s time for this week’s’ MVP.
SG: Ben the envelope please.
BL: Here you are
SG: Wow, we even have an envelope slip that we’ve never had before. And the winner is
RenderG, for his custom Star Citizen control panel
BL: Yes RenderG has created his own Arduino control panel for Star Citizen, it’s looking pretty cool
SG: Check it out and congratulations
BL: You’re this week’s MVP
BL: Be sure to tune to Reverse the Verse tomorrow at 11am Pacific on Twitch where we’ll talk about that Art Sneak Peek and generally make fools of ourselves.
SG: And of course as always a big thank you to all of our subscribers for making this show possible. We will see you next week on Around the Verse!
BL: Around the Verse.