Star Citizen is a lot of things to a lot of people - a passion project for the developers, a full-time hobby for superfans, a fascinating first-hand showcase of how a blockbuster video game takes shape over the course of development for backers and seemingly a bold swindle for people who haven't bought-in yet.
Either way, Cloud Imperium Games raised over $323 Million to turn Chris Roberts' dream into a reality, and a new studio is needed for that.
While the ambitions of Star Citizen have grown along with its unprecedented amount of crowdfunding, all of the players who have bought one of the many, many packs granting access to playable versions have seen that their money didn't go to waste. We've been flying around open space, various space stations, asteroids and other stellar bodies for years now in our fancy ships - soon it'll be time to land on a planet.
To that end, a new studio is opening that will be specifically tasked with crafting the planets that will populate the persistent universe of Star Citizen when the full game launches sometime in the future. Much of the galaxy is expected to be procedurally generated, but even that demands a lot of development to ensure the lack of bugs and sufficient variety. And even then, few highly notable and important locations will need to be built manually.
Cloud Imperium acquired a minor stake in a Montreal based game development company called Turbulent, and today co-founder and chief technical officer Benoit Beausejour announced the creation of a Star Citizen development team. This announcement comes in the wake of the game crossing the latest crowdfunding milestone. Turbulent has been involved with backend and support development in the Star Citizen project for years, and now will now transition to a more frontline task.
Incidentally, a new trailer - which is also a Top Gear homage rolled in one - was released showcasing some of the new visuals and ships in the game. Players who are on the fence about Star Citizen can try it out entirely for free through the 2nd of December, as there is a Free Fly event taking place right now.
Star Citizen and its single-player campaign are set to release sometime in the next decade or so.