Having raised nearly $100m, partly via Kickstarter, a lot of gamers are looking forward to Star Citizen's launch - but they are going to be waiting a little while longer.
Star Citizen is a crowdfunded game that mixes open-world space exploration with first- and third-person combat and dogfighting. The game is available to play right now in its pre-release alpha, with no firm release date set yet. Here we look at the Star Citizen UK release date, price, gameplay, and trailers.
Star Citizen UK release date: When is Star Citizen coming out?
Star Citizen release date: 2017
Star Citizen was due for a commercial release in 2016, but has now been pushed back to 2017. Cloud Imperium Games announced the delay at Citizencon, but didn't comment further on exactly when in 2017 we'd see the game. However, it's said to be working on getting one of the game's 28 chapters to release quality so it can showcase it, but that would suggest there is still a long way to go if there are another 27 chapters to finish afterward.
Star Citizen has undergone a few preview releases for backers on Kickstarter and those who have invested in the game's development.
There was an initial alpha release of the Hangar Module, allowing backers to explore, upgrade and modify their ships in first-person. Later in 2014, the Arena Commander module allowed backers to test ship combat and racing, along with four-player cooperative gameplay.
In 2015, Alpha 2.0 brought the Planetside module, and the latest update, Alpha 2.6, includes the first version of the multiplayer FPS Star Marine - click here to find out more.
Star Citizen: Prices - packages, ships, extras and subscriptions
Initially funded via Kickstarter, Star Citizen isn't a game you simply head to Amazon and order, or even download from Steam. In fact, you can no longer pledge on the Kickstarter page but you can head to the official site to buy into the game.
For starters you'll need a Game Package in order to play Star Citizen. You'll need to select which ship you want to play with based on things like speed, agility, type and design. There are a lot to choose from with prices starting at around £35 for one of the starter packages. At the opposite end of the scale you can go for 'The Completionist' which will set you back a cool £12,600 - this does include a lot of ships, but even with thathuge sum of money, you still won't have any of the ships built post-2014!
Two Star Citizen subscriptions are also available from the store. The Centurion plan for £7.80 per month will get you perks like access to monthly digital magazine Jump Point, decorative items for your hangar added to every two months and access to a subscriber-only forum and chat room. After a year you get things like your name added to the game – somewhere – access to fan events, ship decals, a 10 percent coupon and website beta access.
The Imperator Prime subscription costs £15.60 per month and includes all the Centurion perks plus other extras which will help you progress within the game. After a year you'll get a 20 percent off voucher for the store and an 'Advanced Test Pilot' badge which is a single-use token allowing you one day of access to test fly any available spacecraft each month during a dogfighting alpha test.
Star Citizen: Platforms
If you're wondering whether you will be able to play Star Citizen on your games console, the answer is no. The game is only coming out on PC (Windows or Linux). It won't be available on other platforms like Mac, Xbox 360, Xbox One, PS3, PS4, Wii U, Nintendo Switch, or anything else you can think of.
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Star Citizen is split into several modules, each representing a different element of the game, which are being released one by one to early backers.
The first module to be released, back in 2013, was the Hangar Module, which allows players to walk around a hangar and inspect the ships that they own. This was later supplemented by Arena Commander, a ship-to-ship dogfighting simulator that brings first-person space combat to the game, along with racing and four-player co-op.
The next module to arrive was Planetside, which in its early version allows players to walk around a shared online area and see each others' ships, while in December 2016 Alpha 2.6 was released, bringing with it the first version of Star Marine, a co-op and competitive multiplayer first-person shooter.
You can check out footage of Star Marine in action in this official video from the developer:
Yet to arrive are the full Persistent Universe module and the single-player and co-op campaign mode, Squadron 42. There will also be numerous updates and improvements to all of the existing modules ahead of the final, full release of Star Citizen, currently scheduled for 2017.
Star Citizen: Trailer
Star Citizen: Screenshots
Below is a selection of screenshots for Star Citizen
Star Citizen: 2016 Gamescom Alpha 3.0 Demo
Star Citizen: 2016 Gamescom Live Alpha 3.0 Demo