I am currently designing locations inside the persistent universe of ‘Star Citizen‘. From cities on planets to space stations I am contributing to the many exciting gameplay spaces Star Citizen is inviting players to explore. Here is a selection of the biggest projects on Star Citizen that I’ve been involved in up to this day:
Planet: Hurston (Stanton 1)
Category: Capital City
Owner: Hurston Corp
Out of the four corporate-owned capital cites in the Stanton system, ‘Lorville’ on the planet of Hurston was the first major planetary landing zone that we’ve built for the Persistent Universe. A dystopian industrial city owned by an oppressive mega corporation that focuses on the production of ship weapons and components and that I was responsible for from the level design-side.
Biggest Design Challenges
- Designing a landing zone with a scale/footprint that does a capital city justice while a) allowing players to reach each point-of-interest in an acceptable travel time and b) building it in a way that is achievable under the available time and ressources.
- The city is placed on a fully accessible planet surface without artificial borders. Players can approach the landing zone from North/South/West/East and above.
- Hitting the narrative and visual beats intended for the location in an open multiplayer sandbox type of environment.
- The main points-of-interest are the space port for take-off and landing, two commercial areas (‘L19/Worker’s District’ and ‘Central Business District’) and six gates (with ground vehicle access) dotted around the perimeter of the city.
- These areas are handcrafted locations ready to be accessed by players on foot. The spaces in between are modular city tiles that make up a large portion of the city footprint and create that incredible sense of scale. A network of trains that players can ride connects the playable areas.
Planet: microTech (Stanton 4)
Category: Capital City
Owner: microTech Corp
The 2nd flagship landing zone that I worked on is the capital of microTech: ‘New Babbage’. The chip manufacturer turned the terraforming accident that froze the entire planet into their lucky fortune by using the freezing temperatures to cool their hardware. Most business and social life happes underneath the giant glass domes of New Babbage. A chance for me to apply lessons learned during the development of Lorville and introduce the first high-tech capital city to the ‘verse.
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New Babbage header image by Mr. Hasgaha. More screenshots coming soon.
‘Common Elements’ is what we call building blocks for locations that are used across multiple landing zones in the Persistent Universe. Examples of these that I have designed are hangars, security checkpoints and transit platforms. They share the same functionality but depending on the location can have visual variations (lowtech vs. hightech, location-specific brandings etc.). They are great for standardization and faster production times. Ideally, they are designed with modularity in mind, that means, that they can be easily adapted to fit a specific location’s needs (e.g one track vs two tracks on a transit platform) or to introduce more variation in terms of appearance (e.g. a hangar that uses different wall and alcove modules than the others).