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Latest 'Star Citizen' Video Shows Procedurally Generated Planets

As part of a four-hour livestream session on Twitch where Cloud Imperium Games showed off more behind-the-scenes work for Star Citizen, the developers presented a video that showcased the game’s procedural planet system.

The clip, titled "From Pupil To Planet," started zooming out from the eye of a pilot outside of his ship, which was docked inside a hangar. The camera continued to zoom out, showing more features of the small planetary base and then eventually panning over the mountainous region before exiting the atmosphere and showing the planet as a whole.

The entire purpose of the short video was to show a seamless transition from a player’s viewpoint, all the way to showing off a whole planet, thanks to procedurally generated rendering. As the camera moves further away, the ground below is created at various levels of detail as an entire planet would take up too much memory space.

The timing of the video is too coincidental with the recent release of Elite: Dangerous Horizons, which just introduced the planetary landing feature. Just like Star Citizen, the game also uses procedurally generated rendering as you enter from deep space, enter orbital speed, and eventually reach surface speed to touch down on a landing pad.

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Rexly Peñaflorida II is a Contributor at Tom’s Hardware. He writes news on tech and hardware, but mostly focuses on gaming news. As a Chicagoan, he believes that deep dish pizza is real pizza and ketchup should never be on hot dogs. Ever. Also, Portillo’s is amazing.

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  • clonazepam
    Oh its going to be so good. Patiently waiting for the retail release. I feel like its going to be the biggest bang for the buck in terms of diverse content.

    I haven't played a flight sim since Freespace 2, and its getting tougher to keep that type of an experience fresh for when this finally drops.
    Reply
  • ilhazard
    Here is a link to a gameplay demo of a player flying a ship from a space station to the planet's surface. This video should go hand in hand with the video linked within the article to prove that it is not just a pre-rendered concept, but something that will be released to players soon.

    Reply
  • Avus
    I will gladly pay $120USD to this game than that Star Wars Battlefront eye candy tech demo....
    Reply
  • nitrium
    Oh its going to be so good. Patiently waiting for the retail release. I feel like its going to be the biggest bang for the buck in terms of diverse content.
    Yeah and yet it remarkably generates a ridiculous amount of hate, usually from people that have absolutely no skin in the actual game, so why do they care? Is it that it is a PC exclusive (consoles are going to get Star Citizen right about when PC users get Dead Red Redemption)? Is it that it is ENTIRELY crowdfunded and has blown way past every other crowdfunded project? Is it that they can't cry "scam" anymore, given this game is provably (after pre-alpha release) being worked on? What is it about Star Citizen that they find so detestable?
    Reply
  • Bartendalot
    Oh its going to be so good. Patiently waiting for the retail release. I feel like its going to be the biggest bang for the buck in terms of diverse content.
    Yeah and yet it remarkably generates a ridiculous amount of hate, usually from people that have absolutely no skin in the actual game, so why do they care? Is it that it is a PC exclusive (consoles are going to get Star Citizen right about when PC users get Dead Red Redemption)? Is it that it is ENTIRELY crowdfunded and has blown way past every other crowdfunded project? Is it that they can't cry "scam" anymore, given this game is provably (after pre-alpha release) being worked on? What is it about Star Citizen that they find so detestable?

    I haven't heard anyone complaining that the game is detestable. Where are you seeing this?
    Reply
  • EastOfEden
    I haven't heard anyone complaining that the game is detestable. Where are you seeing this?

    It is not detestable. It is very disappointing. Transition does look nice but the planet surface does look a bit like "my first quick perlin noise 3d surface" exercise. While Elite is today allowing you to land on planets in a working game - like actually you can play the whole game - it is done. Star Citizen ... has been providing modules , each is like a stand alone demo and not actually a game.
    Reply
  • kewlbootz
    I don't hate on it and I don't know if console players hate on it. But, I do really detest the hype it's creating. The game isn't done. Judgment (and money) should really be withheld until we have a full product in hand. Until then, we're just guessing if it's going to be good.

    Yes, maybe you're enjoying it now. But there's no telling what they'll change or if they'll even finish it, no matter how likely it seems that they will. Any time the next big thing comes around, everyone seems to forget all the times and the many different ways gamers have been screwed by crowdfunding projects, paid betas, and the general hype beast.

    Reply
  • clonazepam
    Oh its going to be so good. Patiently waiting for the retail release. I feel like its going to be the biggest bang for the buck in terms of diverse content.
    Yeah and yet it remarkably generates a ridiculous amount of hate, usually from people that have absolutely no skin in the actual game, so why do they care? Is it that it is a PC exclusive (consoles are going to get Star Citizen right about when PC users get Dead Red Redemption)? Is it that it is ENTIRELY crowdfunded and has blown way past every other crowdfunded project? Is it that they can't cry "scam" anymore, given this game is provably (after pre-alpha release) being worked on? What is it about Star Citizen that they find so detestable?

    Might be a bit of projecting their own morality into a situation where millions of dollars exchanges hands?
    Reply
  • wiyosaya
    Article about Star Citizen appears, Citizen spammers appear. They ought to have a category in the game for Citizen Spammers. :p
    Reply
  • Is it hate to say that until the game is released, we don't know what it will end up being? Feature creep and a lot of other things mean that until this game is released, I'm not buying into it.

    I'd love this game to be awesome, but it could easily turn into a dud. I don't pre-order games for the same reason.
    Reply