Today the latest dev diary for Star Control: Origins has been released, providing more information about the design for the game and what players can expect when it launches. Some of this information is particularly relevant for those who are looking forward to a return to some of the classic Star Control titles, but I want to quickly touch on a couple other notes. If you are someone who looked at the earlier images of the game and felt the ships looked too cartoony, the reason has been explained as the material system had not been implemented yet. This was intentional as the game was so far from release, but the developers have begun adding it in, so you can get a better idea of what it will look like in the end. Also scavenging is something the devs are working on, along with having wormholes and ion storms in arena, and the goal is to have these added to the Fleet Battles beta ahead of the Game Developer's Conference.
Now to the revelations about the place Star Control: Origins holds within the franchise, which is as an alternate universe. In this universe, Star Control was formed to discover what happened to the Lexites, a strong-AI created by humanity that freely chose to leave Earth, believing they could do more good "out there" than remaining on the planet. Before the mission to find them could begin though, more pressing events take place forcing you to take command of Earth's lone ship of any relevance. This means Star Control: Origins is not a prequel to the other games, but something different and none of the aliens from the Ur-Quan universe will be present, except possibly ships in the Super-Melee mode of Fleet Battles.
The design of the game has also been further explained, including that there will be no 4X elements as this is an adventure-RPG game, but it will not be a traditional RPG at that. The game will exist as a "state machine," which means it can offer a strong story and good narrative experience within a simulated universe, instead of one purely based on scripts. This is part of the reason the game requires a quad-core CPU and 64-bit operating season, as state machines require a lot of CPU and memory to implement (not necessarily a lot by the standards of modern hardware, but based on past games and computers). Something else to note about the universe is it is completely deterministic and not based on a random number generator. If you and a friend do exactly the same things, you will get the same outcome, and this is intentional. The developers want players to be able to work together to solve challenges in this massively single player game. Missions can still be completed in multiple ways and there will not be any breadcrumbs to lead you on your way.
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