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Squadron 42 - Production

wcloaf

Developer

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Greetings Citizens,
This thread is for asking questions of Squadron 42's production team. Members of the team will frequent this thread and answer your questions when possible. User questions will be deleted after one week to create a readable question-and-answer archive.
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    Where is squadron 42 in the production process? Has the dialogue been written? Have any levels been designed? To what extent are you waiting on engine/backend work form Santa Monica and Austin first?

    Hi Colonel!

    I’m Tom. I’m Project Manager for Foundry 42 in the UK who will be producing Squadron 42.

    We’re in the early days of Production for S42 but there’s already been a large amount of groundwork done and the team is rapidly expanding. One of our main tasks at the moment is getting ourselves organised within CIG as we’ll obviously need to sync up with the rest of the team; for instance, in answer to your questions, yes we do have lots of engine and back-end work to plug in to so a big part of my job to help organise that.

    Obviously we can’t discuss the Storyline with you but we can tell you that story has been finalised, missions are being broken down by design and we have the scripts for some of the initial missions.

    Regards,
    Tom
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    bump ^ i would like to add. how long (hours) do you plan on making s 42?

    Hi Dellinger,

    We plan to make 50 missions plus an Intro level so it will be a good few hours gameplay - I'm sorry we can't be more specific than that at this stage.

    Thanks,
    Tom
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    How is the sound effects production coming along? Will we be able to see the progress (and provide feedback) in this area before Sqaud 42 is released?

    Hi GLAIWO,

    Martin Galway (Director of Audio) came to visit Erin and the Squadron 42 team at our office just last week when he was in the UK for a New Year’s break. We talked about the various needs that would arise for special mission-specific things, and whether or not those special things would end up in the sandbox game later (be it special ships, special locations to land on, or anything else). We discussed where all the dialogue would come from, since a storyline module is necessarily intensive in that area, and things like who would do the audio implementation / design work and where they might be located.

    So it’s definitely been kicked off, but it’s true to say that audio production is normally later in the process, and we will probably be working hard on Squadron 42-specific audio stuff in H2 of 2014.

    Thanks,
    Tom
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    Man everyday it feels like that final week before Christmas Eve when I was 9 years old; and I think its going to be that way everyday until final version launch! Thank you CIG!

    You're welcome Star_Paladin! Thank you for the support.
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    How will the mission's work will it be just mission 1,2,3 etc etc or will you just be based on your ship go about your daily business when suddenly your attacked, i guess i mean will it be linear or modular is effect... also will it be fixed or will there be a variation based on how you play it and other random events that might occur between missions?

    Hi JohnKalel,

    Please repost this on the Design thread, they should be able to help you with these questions.

    Thanks,
    Tom
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    First of all thank you for all the darn fine work you guys are doing over there across the pond, cheers!

    May I ask what different ships our pilot will end up flying throughout the Squadron 42 campaign; or do you consider this too much of a spoiler?

    At the very least will we be piloting or copiloting any ships other than the F-7A? Perhaps a UEE Navy Super Hornet or a Gladiator in certain missions? :)

    How about in the SH or Gladiator in the second seat, or in a Constellation in the command and control role? It would be cool to be the guy running CIC for a couple missions.

    Hi Krel and Star_Paladin,

    The Design team have got lots of cool ideas, please repost this on their thread and they will give you as much info as possible without spoiling anything!

    Thanks,
    Tom
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    I have a quick question. Will we discover and navigate through jump points in the campaign? I think a lot of people are looking forward to doing that in the PU, but will miss out on the opportunity.

    Thanks.

    Hi ERA-dynamiX,

    Please repost this to the Design thread and I'm sure they'll be happy to help answer this for you.

    Thanks,
    Tom
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    Maybe clarify exactly which types of questions this section is supposed to answer? Seems kinda fuzzy at least for me.

    Hi Buran,

    Anything that doesn't involve creative input would be a good yardstick.

    Thanks,
    Tom
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    I watched the video of CR's visit to Sq42 this week. From the discussions going on around and with Chris it sounded like that SQ42 is having to replicate a lot of the assets and code that are being created for the Star Citizen PU - as opposed to having assets, code, AI etc. being interchangeable/shared between the two games (single Player and Multiplayer).

    I'm hoping this is a misunderstanding on my part because that sounds like a lot of unnecessary duplication of effort - given that SQ42 and the PU is supposed to run in the same environment.

    Please tell me I'm way off base?

    Hi WheeledWriter,

    Rest assured that there’s no duplicated effort. We’re creating assets in SQ42 for use in the persistent universe, and vice versa.

    Thanks,
    Tom
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    How many developers are at Foundry 42 at the moment and how far away do you think are you for being fully staffed?

    Hi Srefanius,

    We're at 32 staff right now, soon to be 33, and we'll be looking to hire around another 10 people this year. We're looking to cap it at around 50 so that we keep the team nice and tight.

    Thanks,
    Tom
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    Hi guys, it's my understanding that after initially creating a character you can take part in Squadron 42 or jump directly into multiplayer. If you choose to do the campaign you walk away with a great experience and some sort of reward like credits entering into multiplayer.

    I also understand that the campaign is packed full of awesome content so you'll be playing awhile. I love the single player experience and anticipate a great time but unfortunately I work often and can't find the time to play. So if I choose to start the campaign will I be unable to take part in multiplayer until completion or will I be able to swap between them as time allows?

    Hi Cookie Doctor, thanks for the question. Please see Joxer's very informative reply :)
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    Hi guys, it's my understanding that after initially creating a character you can take part in Squadron 42 or jump directly into multiplayer. If you choose to do the campaign you walk away with a great experience and some sort of reward like credits entering into multiplayer.

    I also understand that the campaign is packed full of awesome content so you'll be playing awhile. I love the single player experience and anticipate a great time but unfortunately I work often and can't find the time to play. So if I choose to start the campaign will I be unable to take part in multiplayer until completion or will I be able to swap between them as time allows?

    Erin Roberts answered most (if not all) of your question in the squadron 42 - Design thread. Here's the link: https://forums.robertsspaceindustries.com/discussion/95615/squadron-42-design/p1 Enjoy the read, it's short, but informative. =]

    Specifically to answer the question you present, the SQ42 campaign will have several places where you can exit out of the military for one reason or another and join the Persistent Universe (MMO), once you've joined the PU, you can only go back to SQ42 with that character for the fun of playing it, not for any reward or changing of status in the PU, you're stuck with what you got when you first opted out.

    An available option is you can start the campaign with one character, and enter the PU with a second character, and play whichever one you feel like playing at a given time. That way you have the best of both worlds.

    SQ42 is going to allow your friends to co-op with you so the single player campaign can technically also be a multiplayer experience, though only you get the story out of it, they don't. They're just drop in wingmen/wingwomen. So that's an option too if you just want to fly a few missions with some friends from time to time.

    Spot on, thanks Joxer!!

    Cookie Doctor, please let us know if we can clear anything else up for you but I think Joxer pretty much covered it :)
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    Hello Foundry 42

    I am just curious: Have you guys come across any hilarious bugs yet? Care to share a small story?

    Hi RunningToken,

    We haven't got to the bug fixing stage yet but the team in the States might have some to share with you from the Hangar release.

    Ask us again in a few months and we'll probably have a book full!

    Thanks,
    Tom
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    hi devs,

    Can I imagine having this in S42 : 0.jpg


    mission very speed and skilled :)

    thanks

    If we don't, we've failed!
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    Hello Foundry 42

    I am just curious: Have you guys come across any hilarious bugs yet? Care to share a small story?

    Hi RunningToken,

    We haven't got to the bug fixing stage yet but the team in the States might have some to share with you from the Hangar release.

    Ask us again in a few months and we'll probably have a book full!

    Thanks,
    Tom
    I did hear mentioning that the guy in charge of the spaceship movement had trouble getting the physics right causing him a lot of frustration finally asking chris roberts what could possibly be wrong with his work only to have chris saying his work is solid but the cry-engine is simulating the ships as if they where underwater.
    I've not heard anything about it behaving like the ships are under water, or at least not since I joined in January. There's has however been a lot of hard work going in to the flight system in order to get it feeling good for Dogfighting.
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    Howdy

    can we get official model data for 3d printer?
    Mayby in the pledge Store?

    Right now the Connie model is the only 3D one slated.
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    Hi,
    At which state of production of Squadron 42 will other spoken languages be available?
    As far as I know SQ42 will not be released into a beta status - so it would be cool for people who like to enjoy the game in there mother tongue.
    For example my girlfriend isn´t that experienced in english as she would like to be, so I think she would only enjoy the game in one of the announced translations (german).
    And although I understand english pretty fluently, it is the same for me. And I think it´s the same for many people with different languages.

    Danke schön :-)

    Hey Murrock!

    The current plan is for EFIGS (English, French, Italian, German, Spanish) with the possibility of Russian for the final release. It's likely that we will be doing a closed-beta before the final release, but as to which languages that will be in if it happens is hard to say but I'd hope it would be all of the above.

    Thanks,
    Tom
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    I was wondering if there was a plan like the romance choice between Flint and Rachel in Wing Commander 3, or the evolving wing-men of the series to be placed in this take on the franchise?

    Will we see similar things added, completely scrapped for other ideas, or expanded to be more in depth?

    The hard choices in those games are what drove me (and possibly many others) to play them. Losing friends, developing other relations... it made a huge impact for a game, turning a run of the mill combat simulator into an experience.

    Hi Zoltrix,

    That's one for the Design thread really. Please post this up there and someone else will get you a proper answer but we are indeed planning to have rich relationship experiences in the game. As for romance I couldn't possibly comment but you'd hope so!

    Be warned - we really don't want to give away any of our storyline so please don't expect too many specifics from our Design team so that we don't spoil the fun for you all! :)

    Thanks,
    Tom
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    Hello Foundry 42

    I am just curious: Have you guys come across any hilarious bugs yet? Care to share a small story?

    Hi RunningToken,

    We haven't got to the bug fixing stage yet but the team in the States might have some to share with you from the Hangar release.

    Ask us again in a few months and we'll probably have a book full!

    Thanks,
    Tom
    I did hear mentioning that the guy in charge of the spaceship movement had trouble getting the physics right causing him a lot of frustration finally asking chris roberts what could possibly be wrong with his work only to have chris saying his work is solid but the cry-engine is simulating the ships as if they where underwater.
    I've not heard anything about it behaving like the ships are under water, or at least not since I joined in January. There's has however been a lot of hard work going in to the flight system in order to get it feeling good for Dogfighting.
    I dont remember where i heard it but it was one of the very first iterations of the flight model.
    I remembered because the way it was told was that chris knew right away it was because the cry engine simulates space at that time as if it was water and i thought that was rather funny.
    Yeah I can imagine the first iteration would have looked pretty odd if the behaviour was using water-based physics. Our new thruster and Intelligent Flight Control System (IFCS) won't be anything like that though. Hopefully it will blow you all away! :)
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    With over 30 people all working on the project how many different "parts" is the team usually working on at once? Do you usually try to get as many people as possible focussed on one area or do you have the whole team spread out and working on completely different areas at any given time?

    Hi Stockade,

    Currently we have all hands on deck (well, most of them!) helping out with the Dogfighting Module. Some of our team are still working on the Squadron 42 scripts and paper designs along with some ship designs going on in the background but right now the main focus is everything relating to Dogfighting. That's not a problem for us as we will certainly need all of the systems and content in our story campaign anyway so it's really just a re-prioritisation.

    However, to try and answer your question - hypothetically speaking, when we settle down to a more S42-specific development process, we will look to focus our team in to smaller groups working on a few different missions at the same time. Obviously we wouldn't want to spread ourselves too thinly so it might only be 3 or 4 missions at any one time but these will change depending on the workflow of the 'passes' from each department, ie if we've had an art pass completed on one mission then that art resource could move on to a different mission whilst it's receiving feedback. It's a very complicated process with so many inter-dependencies which is why it takes a great deal of organisation and communication, and we've certainly got a lot of content to produce so I'm sure we'll be calling on all of the CIG resources available to us around the world when the time comes!

    Anyway I hope that all makes sense and answers your question! :)

    Thanks,
    Tom
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    How many man hours does it take to make something as large as the mining station to the level of detail that SC wants?

    Hello Professor Falken!

    I asked Paul Jones, our Art Director at Foundry 42, what his thoughts were on this as it’s a bit of an unknown quantity at the moment. The exterior has been concepted with modularity in mind to make it easier to piece together, then once we have taken a small section and reached the visual bar needed for SC, we’ll sit down, review it and extrapolate a rough idea of long the rest of the station will take.

    We’ll do the same for interior and exteriors.

    Thanks,
    Tom
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    Ahoy mateys!

    There are many games that have branching story lines with alternative rewards for the play style chosen. I am one of those few that actually will replay a game multiple times until I see all possible branches, but I only do this with games that can be saved at key points. I must have played Dragon Age Origins and Mass Effect about 20 times just to take different characters through each area to hear the dialog exchanges.

    Will I be able to save the game at these points, (obviously not in combat), and retain them so I can go through all the different content without having to back up too far in each branch?

    Ahoy there Emperor!

    I would run this by the Design thread to see if anyone has any ideas on save game functionality. It's still early days though so I doubt it has been locked down yet.

    Thanks,
    Tom
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    Ahoy mateys!

    There are many games that have branching story lines with alternative rewards for the play style chosen. I am one of those few that actually will replay a game multiple times until I see all possible branches, but I only do this with games that can be saved at key points. I must have played Dragon Age Origins and Mass Effect about 20 times just to take different characters through each area to hear the dialog exchanges.


    Will I be able to save the game at these points, (obviously not in combat), and retain them so I can go through all the different content without having to back up too far in each branch?

    Ahoy there Emperor!

    I would run this by the Design thread to see if anyone has any ideas on save game functionality. It's still early days though so I doubt it has been locked down yet.

    Thanks,
    Tom
    rather than a save feature, how about a mission select screen once the game or that episodic release is comleted by the player they can replay them individually. so you finish 1-10 and then you can play them individually and see the outcomes that you didn't see in your official play through.
    That's a decent idea, thanks for the input GTOwen! Although I have to say it's not me you need to convince, that decision is down to the Design team so I'll pass this info on for consideration.
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    Hi, is there a portuguese subtitle for SQ42 ?

    Hi Cabral,

    The game will initially be localized to English, French, German and Spanish with plans to handle other languages afterwards.

    Thanks,
    Tom
  • Scimitar-CIG

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    My Question, well you can also take it as suggestion, in case you haven't thought about it, is:

    As Squadron 42 will start before the PU, but Organizations do already exist.
    Will Squadron 42 "detect" if the player is a member (or even a Leader or Officer) of an Organization and will some dialogues and between NPCs or NPCs and the player refer to Organizations and the players membership in an Organization (in case he is member of such one, of course!) ?

    Hi Fireball,

    It's not currently in the plan to refer to these organisations during the campaign, but it's a nice suggestion and one I will mention when we're next talking about the Conversation System.

    Thanks,
    Daz
  • Scimitar-CIG

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    Will there be a way, while piloting in a dogfight, to call out a team member, a target, and an instruction without VoIP? For example, I press a button bound to my wingman (red 4), then look at an enemy fighter and press another button indicating he should attack. Red 4 gets an audio message from his computer and the target is highlighted in his HUD.

    Hi agtUnknown,

    I have certainly heard this kind of functionality discussed, as we want to make in-flight commands and second-to-second gameplay quick and easy to perform. After all, you don't want to be flying in a straight line battling with your computer systems to give orders to wingmen when you have three Vanduul Scythes trying to take chunks out of your ship, do you?

    Thanks,
    Daz
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    hi guys

    so I proposed kind of benchmarking tools for star citizen in this thread https://forums.robertsspaceindustries.com/discussion/127227/feature-request-star-citizen-benchmark-tools#latest

    about 2 kind of tools, one is a traditional rolling demo benchmarks and the other is an on the fly in gameplay benchmarking ability.



    but then just today I got an idea, and I think this hasn't been done in video gaming before.

    so, what if you guys create a kind of... named, say... Squadron 42 Prologue? so it is a

    - rolling demo benchmark, that is also
    - serve as a grand introductory to Star Citizen in general and Squadron 42 1st campaign specifically
    - importantly it is not just a random scenes usually thrown into benchmark tools, but specifically directed and narrated to explain the back story of Star Citizen and Squadron 42, as I stated before, a Prologue; exactly like the 2004 BSG pilot movie / mini series that served as the prologue to the TV show.
    - so instead of the usual pre rendered trailers used for other games, you do this in a real time execute able demo; even maybe CIG and Crytek can collaborate together to make this double as Cryengine demo just as Epic did with UE4
    - so maybe you can release this not just to backers but also for public, so not only you can advertise to public but you can also give them (AND US, BACKERS) the tool to measure their pc performance as opposed to just a written official min/recommended pc spec requirement
    - with all above in mind, I hope this wouldn't be just like a half minute demo, but can reach like 20 minutes demo or sort of, to really show the quality of the project not just about the graphics audio and technical stuffs but also story telling, narration etc, it can be 100% cutscenes or part cutscenes part limited interactive demo.


    I understand this kind of stuff maybe can be time consuming, resources consuming and all, perhaps even force a kind of stretching the planned story a bit; but personally I think it gonna be cool and worth it, something AFAIK hasn't been done before.


    Hi napoleonic,

    Thanks very much for the suggestion, I'll pass this on to the rest of the team.

    Best wishes,
    Tom
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    I have a ship in my Hangar called the Khartu. I know there is a civilian model sold in the UEE called the Khartu-Al with human control surfaces. I also know that the description says you can venture into Xi'an space to score the military version if thats what you want. the Ship I bought in November was limited to a 24 hour End-of-LTI sale. In my hangar, it says KHARTU - LTI, not KHARTU-AL - LTI.
    Screen+Shot+2014-05-10+at+11.50.26+AM.pn
    I have asked, and all anyone can show me is a concierge saying that its the civilian version, even though I know CIG has pledged military ships at least twice before, for limited times.

    Is the ship in my hangar a typo? or a military ship?
    If its a typo, can we get someone to correct it? and if its a military ship, can we get a Dev to make a statement so people will stop telling to shut up about it (even though I've only just recently asked).

    Hi Mydian,

    You might be better off posting this on a PU or Ship thread, as it's not directly Squadron 42 related so I might not be giving you the best answer here, but AFAIK it is the civilian ship. Hope that helps!

    Thanks,
    Tom
  • TJohnson_CIG

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    Hi Guys,

    Just wondering if completing parts of S42 & therefore becoming a seasoned pilot will provide you & other pilots with missions?

    Not too my knowledge but I wouldn't say that's totally out of the question. You're better off asking the S42 Design thread for this kind of thing.
  • Addis

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    Hi guys,

    my question is about CryEngine 3 and the whole StarCitizen project. This week our German geming magazine 'Gamestar' reported that CryTek, developer of CryEngine 3, has been close to insolvency in April (due to bad sales of the last AAA games). Some ominous investor, probably Wargaming.net, will provide financial support. Just in case CryTek goes bankrupt and the support of the CryEngine ends, what would you do? Did you already evaluate this kind of risk? Would you support the engine by yourself, since a new netcode was written for the DFM?
    I am concerned that this could have a bad effect on the project, if this case happens in a few years.

    Regards,

    Pascal

    Hi S1GN3T,

    We did an outright buyout of the engine last year and have the source code, so while we hope all the noise about Crytek blows over, as they are great partners and friends to the project, if the worse happened we would be ok, as we’ve already branched the engine and have a large team that is adding features and supporting it every day here at CIG. So even in the worst case scenario we should be fine, but obviously we hope it does not come to that.

    Cheers,

    Erin
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