The massive 3.0 update for Star Citizen‘s alpha was scheduled to go live in August, but has been pushed back to September.
The update was originally given an end of 2016 release window before being pushed back to June and then August. The current release window for update 3.0 is now listed as September 4th-18th.
“This week, we entered the optimization, polish and bug fixing phase for the 3.0 feature set,” the developer wrote in an update. “As there have been so many features and content implemented, we’ve encountered some stability issues that we want to address before going to a wider test audience. The ongoing work on the new Patcher system (that will save you from having to completely re-download each build) and some new bugs with CopyBuild3 (our internal version of the patcher) have also slowed us down. Because of this we have pushed back the Evocati and subsequent date ranges to reflect the additional time needed to get Star Citizen Alpha 3.0 ready for prime time.”
Of course, fans, backers, and the general gaming community have all had something to say about this delay and most of it has not been all that positive. The reaction to yet another delay has been met by a response from director of player relations Will Leverett on the official forums explaining that the update has “pushed far past the technological boundaries that were previously considered impossible to build the foundation of the Star Citizen universe.”
“As gamers, we are conditioned to consider all dates as static points in time that we can wrap our heads around and plan for in advance,” he wrote. “The nature of this project does not neatly fit into that mold due to the complexity of what we’re building, and with what we learn about what’s possible and needed along the way. These date ranges are dynamic according to the challenges presented to us at that time, and we actively maintain that to keep you up to date.
“The scope of 3.0 is not insignificant, as Chris discussed. It introduces a level of tech and infrastructure that’s an order of magnitude larger and more complex than all of our previous versions combined. There are thousands of new assets, millions of entities to manage, new UI, new features, multiple new backend services, etc. all being introduced in 3.0. Integrating all of this has revealed to be MUCH more of a bug fixing project than anticipated, which obviously reshapes those estimates and changes those dates. Hammering in a level of polish that we’ve not aimed for before requires an additional adjustment of dates.”
Read Leverett’s full explanation here.