BY ATREIA CO. STAR CITIZEN BUYING GUIDE FOR PROSPECTIVE PLAYERS 3.11 EDITION "The art of purchasing is delicate and informative. The official website is not" -Starfucius VERY IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER STAR CITIZEN IS AN ALPHA! What does this mean? It means that there WILL be bugs, bugs, bugs, design issues, constant changes and most of all, your in-game progression will NOT be permanent through to launch! Purchase into this project / back the project ONLY if you understand and accept all that comes with an alpha product, or would like to support the project to its eventual release. This guide was written for 3.11.1 Alpha release. SO SHOULD I BUY? OR WAIT? REASONS TO WAIT Almost 80-95% of the planned content are not available. Of the 20% that are, they are mostly buggy and oftentimes not well designed yet. There are countless bugs and issues that cycle patch to patch, sometimes persisting between them. Ships are a huge grind to obtain ingame due to wipes and resets. Of course, you might be able to make more money as you learn the ways, but do take note. REASONS TO BUY You want to play a game of this scale now, a first-person universe MMO with highly detailed models, graphics, sunsets and simulation physics. You're OK with all the bugs and frustrations. The price of the game will only increase over time. PART 0. REFERRALS DO THIS WHEN CREATING YOUR ACCOUNT! Head to https://gorefer.me/randomizer/STAR Copy down the code you are given. Apply it on the account creation page when you are creating an account. Star Citizen has a referral program where players can create accounts using another player's referral code. This gives the new player 5000 UEC starting money extra, and gives the other player a referral point, which counts towards some cool rewards. PART 0a. WHICH IS THE GAME? STAR CITIZEN VS SQ42 UNDERSTANDING THE DIFFERENCE Since the package split in 2016, Star Citizen and Squadron 42 are sold seperately. You can either buy one of these, or both in a combo package or individually (More expensive). The 'main' Star Citizen game. Campaign title set in the same universe. Massive MMO space sim. Singleplayer-only. For the purposes of this guide we will be only discussing about buying into Star Citizen's MMO portion, although we will go through the pricing options if you want Squadron 42 as well. PART 0b. PVP OR PVE? STAR CITIZEN IS BOTH. PVP The Open Universe is open to combat from any player or NPC at almost all times outside of a major city. Even off major ports, the armistice in effect does not disable PVP. It just adds more consequence to firing your guns on someone in it. If you are seeking PVP, there are opportunities to either pirate, hunt, dogfight, among others, although as of now piracy is not implemented officially. It is an open universe. Although right now without server meshing ( A technology that will allow multiple servers to combine to increase player caps ) there are only 50 players per server instance spread across a star system. PVE There are a lot of PVE missions and content as well. Generated missions often involve fighting AI ships, combatants, or investigations that do not involve fighting at all. Trading, mining, are among some of the professions that you could ultimately do an entire day without getting into a fight as well. If you don't want to PVP, you can play the game in a way that mostly negates PVP and still do well. PVP is not 100% avoidable, but you can mostly minimize it. PART 1a. WHAT AM I GETTING? IN STAR CITIZEN ALPHA 3.11 WHAT THE GAME CURRENTLY HAS (ALL IN UNPOLISHED ALPHA FORM) Contracts (Generated missions) Trading (Simple buy and sell of goods) Mining (Extracting rocks and selling) Law System (Criminal rating and prison) Early Medical (Respawn on medbeds only) Bounty Hunting (Hunting and killing criminal targets) Survival Mechanics (Food, Water, Temperature, Oxygen) Component upgrading on ships Shopping for armor / clothes / guns / ships / ship parts Arena Commander (Instanced PVP/PVE Dogfighting) Star Marine (Instanced PVP FPS) PART 1b. WHAT WILL I GET? PLANNED FEATURES WHAT THE GAME IS PLANNING TO EVENTUALLY HAVE Dynamic Economy System (Quanta) Salvaging (Breaking down wrecks) Exploration (Scanning and finding data) Tourism (Touring NPC and players around systems) Transit (Carrying NPC and players between systems) Repair (Fixing stuff) Medical (Fixing people) Construction (Outpost building) Player Market (Player-owned shops that sell goods) Data Courier (Passing and Running data on ship servers) Fleet Warfare (Large scale ship to ship combat) Cosmetic Ship Customization and Component Deterioration Way more contracts, missions, NPC storyline quests Racing Career Alien fauna and flora On-ship amenities and arcades +More...... PART 2. CAN I RUN IT? MINIMUM SPECS FROM THE OFFICIAL SITE As the alpha progresses and optimization improves, the game's requirements drop slightly, and you might find that even mid range computers can still play the game quite smoothly. Of course, the important thing to note here is that you MUST have at least 16 GB of RAM and install Star Citizen alpha on an SSD. The game relies heavily on stream-loading content, which is hard on an HDD to keep up with. Ideally, head over to this link and compare user specs and how they perform: https://robertsspaceindustries.com/telemetry PART 3a. WHEN SHOULD I BUY? DISCOUNTS GAME PRICE REDUCTIONS So you've accepted the project specs, have a PC that isn't a potato, and want to buy in. When is the best time to do it? If you're looking for a discounted price to enter Star Citizen, usually the starter packages go for around $5 off during the November Anniversary Sale, December Holidays Sale, and likely during / around free flight events. In fact, if you are reading this when its written (18 Nov 20), there is an upcoming free flight this month, which might entail some discounted starter packages. Ask around the community if you are unsure when the game will go on discount. As a side note, understand that when the SC community mentions a 'SALE', it is not the traditional discounted sale you might be thinking of. Rather the term sale in SC means that usually unavailable ships are purchaseable for a time. Otherwise, there is really not much reason to wait if you want to get in now. The game will only get more expensive as we cross thresholds towards release. PART 3b. CAN I TRY FOR FREE? FREE FLIGHT EVENTS TRIAL PERIODS From time to time, they will announce free flight events or weeks. These events mean that any player with a Star Citizen account is able to download, log in, and play the alpha release completely FREE, no strings attached. It is recommended for you to use these events as a way to test the game on your machine, or just to check in the progress and see if it is time for oyu to jump in or wait. Always only buy into a project if you feel comfortable with it. PART 4. WHAT SHOULD I BUY? BASICS OF PURCHASING UNDERSTANDING THE PLEDGE STORE Purchasing Star Citizen can be confusing. There are so many options, so many prices, and the fear of purchasing the wrong thing is always prevalent. First, you need to understand a few key aspects. STANDALONE SHIPS are just spaceships. They do not come with a game package. Buying a standalone ship only gives you the ship and its DO NOT BUY STANDALONE SHIPS UNLESS YOU insurance level. KNOW WHAT YOU ARE DOING! GAME PACKAGES are ships/ a ship bundled together with the game, either only Star Citizen, or both Star Citizen + Squadron 42 (combo). THESE ARE WHAT YOU WANT CCU (SHIP UPGRADES) only change one ship to another, and do not include the game access! DO NOT BUY SHIP UPGRADES UNLESS YOU KNOW WHAT YOU ARE DOING! PART 4. WHAT SHOULD I BUY? BASICS OF PURCHASING UNDERSTANDING THE STORE READOUT When you view a package description under the store page (Not the Fly Now page), you might get this layout. This page will describe what you are getting in the package. 1 2 3 4 1 ) Hangar Access Level 2) Starting Money 3) Insurance Level Determines which hangar Your starting money. You How many months your ship you get. (Does not matter don't lose this money now, is covered by insurance. now, mostly aesthetic) and you will get it when the (Can be extended Ingame game launches. on launch, in alpha right now insurance has not 4) Star Citizen Download A) SQ42 Download begun ticking.) This means Star Citizen This means the SP game access is included. campaign portion is YOU NEED THIS. included. (Not shown on the pic) PART 4. WHAT SHOULD I BUY? BASICS OF PURCHASING WHAT DO I NEED AT THE MINIMUM? While at the minimum a ship is not technically needed to play the game, ALL game packages come with a ship included. The minimum buy-in package that you need starts at 45$ USD, listed below. Shown here are the two packages that are the BARE MINIMUM to buy into the game. Of course, if you can get any package with game access cheaper, go for it! Do note, that the two packages shown DO NOT include the singleplayer campaign Squadron 42. PART 4. WHAT SHOULD I BUY? BASICS OF PURCHASING BUYING SQUADRON 42 AS WELL If you would like to buy the singleplayer campaign as well, look for either the Star Citizen + Squadron 42 Combo package deals, or purchase SQ 42 standalone (Not recommended!) Shown here are the two packages that are the BARE MINIMUM to buy into the game WITH Squadron 42 access included. They have similar pictures to the previous packages so READ CAREFULLY! PART 4. WHAT SHOULD I BUY? BASICS OF PURCHASING SO WHICH SHOULD I GET? Between the Aurora and the Mustang Alpha, there are nuances to getting either package. GO FOR THE AURORA IF You will NOT spend anymore on Star Citizen, and have no plans to upgrade the Aurora with real money to another ship. You want to be able to do delivery box missions without awkward stuffing and glitching (As much as the Mustang anyway, as the Mustang's rear cargo box can't be used to hold deliveries.) GO FOR THE MUSTANG ALPHA IF You want a faster ship. You don't like the Aurora. You want to upgrade to another ship with real cash. The Aurora MR is worth $5 less on the store value than the Mustang. So while both packages cost the same, the Mustang arguably gets you $5 off if you do a cash upgrade. DO I NEED TO UPGRADE OR BUY SHIPS WITH REAL CASH? NO. YOU DO NOT. All ships are confirmed to be purchasable in-game at launch with in-game money. Even right now, several of the ships can be outright earned in-game. However, when a full wipe occurs, you only get back what you paid for. PART 4. WHAT SHOULD I BUY? BASICS OF PURCHASING WARBOND? WHAT'S THAT? You might come across an item or package on the store that was the word 'Warbond'. In such cases, they are Warbond pledges that can only be bought with new cash. This means that you can't use Store Credit. (Account credit gained from 'melting' explained below) Warbond Generally comes with a discount. Might come with an exclusive skin or flair. Cannot bought with Store Credit. (New cash only) Non-Warbond Can be bought with Store Credit or with new cash. Example attached shows the Prowler Warbond being sold cheaper. PART 5. ADVANCED PURCHASES THE SPACE PENGUIN WHY DO PEOPLE KEEP TELLING ME TO BUY AN AVENGER? Asking around the SC community will often get you the same result. "Don't buy either of the starter packs. Buy an Avenger Titan instead!" To put it simply, the Avenger Titan costs $20 more to upgrade from the Mustang Alpha, or $25 from the Aurora MR. However, this ship is what I would call a Tier 2 starter, as it performs MUCH better than either of the earlier starters. The Avenger Titan has a cargo hold, stronger weapon mounts and better stats, making it a far greater ship to start off with if you can afford it. To get this ship, you can either purchase the Avenger Titan starter pack, or purchase a Mustang Alpha combo pack, THEN buy a ship upgrade from the Mustang Alpha to the Avenger Titan for $20. Alternatively, if you do not want SQ42, you can also buy the Avenger Titan starter pack for $70. Buying the Avenger as your first ship is not necessary, but it does make your life easier in SC. PART 5. ADVANCED PURCHASES CCU SYSTEM CROSS CHASSIS UPGRADES The CCU system is a way for you to upgrade any ship on the website to a more expensive ship while retaining ALL insurance, extras and game access tied to the original ship. When CCU-ing, you pay the price difference between the two ship's valuation price. You then receive an upgrade component in your website account hangar, which you can apply at any time to a package or ship to change the attached ship. WHAT CARRIES OVER IN A CCU? Everything except the old ship. When you apply a CCU on a game package, the game access remains, and any bonus items in the pack get carried over. The insurance that was originally included also carries over. This means that if you bought your pack with a 2 month insurance for your Aurora MR, your new CCU'ed Avenger Titan will also have 2 months of insurance. Exception: With the introduction of IAE/Warbond CCUs, packages and ships may change insurance levels, as a rule of thumb, if the package now lists multiple insurance levels, the highest insurance level will always apply. PART 5. ADVANCED PURCHASES I REGRET EVERYTHING! THE MELTING SYSTEM / PLEDGE EXCHANGE Melting is a way to "return" a game package or ship to the store, although this is not a refund, so instead you get back Store Credit, in exact dollar for dollar how much you spent on the item before melting. To do this, go to your account hangar on the website and click 'Exchange' beside the item you want to melt. CAVEATS There is a 24 hour melting lock on new purchases. You can only melt a ship/package 24 hours after buying it from the store. If you melt a package or ship that has been CCU'ed up from another ship, you CAN'T buy back the upgraded ship from buyback, only the original ship before CCUs. (Buybacks are explained in the next page) PART 5. ADVANCED PURCHASES I REGRET REGRETTING THE BUYBACK LIST Whenever you melt a purchase, it gets sent to your buyback list on the account website. The buyback list allows you to purchase back an item if you want to reverse a decision. While many backers use it to store limited purchases for personal or grey market use, CIG says that this is NOT the intended purpose. Caveats: As mentioned under Melting Section, you can only Buyback the base ship/package, applied CCUs on melted items CAN'T be bought back! You can only buyback an item with Store Credit if you have a Buyback Token. A Buyback Token is given to you every quarter of the year and they do not stack! So plan your Buybacks wisely. Otherwise if you are using new cash you can Buyback items anytime. Prices on CCUs WILL increase in price if the ships affected change in price! However, standalone ships and packages remain at the price you bought in at. PART 5. PURCHASE PLANNING PLAYING THE LONG GAME CCU / PRICE GUESSING / ANALYSING This is really more a topic for more seasoned players of Star Citizen, so I won't go in depth into this topic, but lets cover it briefly. As the game develops, ships constantly change their prices upwards. Some ships rise in value much more than others. Smaller ships really only change their value in small amounts, while capital ships can increase in value in the hundreds. WHAT DOES THIS MEAN? Well, for one, it means that anyone who purchased a ship earlier at a lower price gets to enjoy the fact that they now own a much more expensive ship without needing to pay more. This is useful for upgrading, because CCUs only count the current value of ships. If you paid $100 for what is now a $150 ship, you can pay only $50 to upgrade it to a $200 ship. Planning entire discount packages, upgrading ships carefully and predicting when and where prices will hike is a long game in SC, and really requires knowledge past the newbie level. Do you have to partake in Purchase Planning? NO. Once again, you are NOT required to purchase any more than the base minimum. PART 6. FAQS PROSPECTIVE CITIZEN FAQS IS STAR CITIZEN PAY TO WIN? Depends on your perspective of the game. Most ships past the starter range are side-grades rather than upgrades. They all serve a role that can never be superseded even by bigger ships. However, due to missing systems some ships might currently be outright upgrades over yours, although in the end Pilot Skill is first and foremost. MINING IS INACCESSIBLE FOR ME IN AN AURORA? There are a few ways to try mining out. Mainly, you can rent a Prospector at a city rental shop in-game with in-game credits and do mining. It won't be as powerful as a fully upgraded mining ship self-owned, but its there. You can also do hand-mining which only requires a mining backpack and a mining attachment on a multitool, all items you can very easily earn in-game. A Greycat ROC Mining Car is purchaseable for 172k Ingame aUEC at Lorville, and can be used to mine at outposts. HOW DO I EVEN FIGHT OTHER PLAYERS IN BETTER STRONGER SHIPS? You don't always have to. PVP is actually quite rare and there are ways to mitigate exposure to other players. Even if you have a player encounter- smaller, cheaper ships tend to be faster than bigger, stronger ships, so run and you'd be fine. With prison system online people are also more cautious when it comes to ganking. Ultimately if you are forced into PVP you can always hop servers or avoid an area. PART 6. FAQS PROSPECTIVE CITIZEN FAQS HOW MANY HOURS CAN I PLAY THIS GAME FOR? Hard to say. What you enjoy differs from what others enjoy. There are players who have been playing this game regularly for years and still have not gotten bored of it, even in its alpha state. However, there are also a large group of players who do not find enjoyment in the current build, due to lack of completed game loops or frustration from bugs. COMMUNITY EVENTS? Plenty. There are events such as the Daymar Rally, PVP events, competitions that are all hosted by passionate people in the community. Look them up and see if any suits you. IS THIS GAME FOR ME? I AM A SOLO PLAYER. Yes it is definitely solo-friendly. An organization (guild) is not necessary. At all. While there are benefits to finding a group that suits your playstyle, you can still do fine solo. WHERE CAN I FIND RESOURCES? Everywhere. Youtube, Twitch, Reddit, Spectrum (The official website forum) all have content creators eager to help you out. The official Guide system on the website is aimed to help players by assigning a guide. I have not used it personally but it might work out well. Give it a shot. PART 7. PREVAILING BUGS MY STARMAP DOES NOT SHOW ANYTHING / I CANT SET QUANTUM ROUTE / MY NAV MAP IS MESSED / HOW DO YOU SEE A PLANET'S LOCAL POINTS 1. Click the crosshair icon button to center map on your position. 2. Scroll out until you see the planet / system. 3. Double click the planet you wish to view / Travel to. 4. Single click the destination point. 5. Click Set Route. 6. If it is still failing, or your route is blocked by a planet, close the map, fly out further into space, or do a jump without the map plotting to a nearby space marker, then try again. Any combination of 1-6 is often likely to solve NavMap issues. If it still fails, try going to a different tab on the Mobiglas and going back to the Starmap a few times. Do note that the current iteration of the Starmap is unable to plot a route through a planet if you are on or near the surface of the planet itself. In most cases, manually Quantum Jump to a nearby OM (Orbital Marker) before plotting your course again. Dragging the Starmap around to angle it until you can click on a point might help. Sometimes points are blocked by asteroids (In the case of Levski, Delamar). In such cases it is easier to just jump to the general planet point and just manually spool and find the specific Quantum Point. If you have spooled for jump and holding B only cancels it, try looking away from the point, then spool and look back at it and try again. PART 7. PREVAILING BUGS I CAN'T REFUEL, REARM, REPAIR. WHATS WRONG WITH THIS SPACEPORT?! 1. Fly up into space / the air again. Request landing again. 2. Get near the pad and hover, don't land. 3. Try to use the services. 4. Fly off again. 5. Request landing on a different pad. 6. Repeat step 1 once. 7. Fly away from the station, hold BACKSPACE to self destruct. 8. File a claim on the ship. Try the steps in escalating order until something works. If the screen says 'Ship unknown location but states that it is in the port', you might not be able to reclaim it. Fly off in another ship to a different station away from this planet, and file claim. If your ship is still in purgatory with no help in sight, perform an Account Reset on the website. PART 7. PREVAILING BUGS WHY IS THERE XXSHIPSLAYERXX NAME STUCK ON MY SCREEN HELP / PORT OLISAR TAG IS ON MY SCREEN HELP / SOME DIGGITY UI IS STUCK ON MY SCREEN HELP 1. Press F2 (Starmap). 2. Click Clear route. 3. Close Starmap. 4. Remove helmet ( Hold F and Right Click, use radial menu OR set keybind). 5. Put helmet back on. 6. Suicide with BACKSPACE (Hold) is the final option that resets your UI. You will spawn at your last landed port or medbed. Try the steps in escalating order until something works. MY GUN ISN'T FIRING WTF 1. Bind a key to Inspect weapon, or Hold F on the gun and inspect it. 2. Switch weapon back and forth. 3. Try test firing in the air. Try the steps in escalating order until something works. I CAN'T SEE MY FRIENDS NAME TAGS 1. Press F11 and click the arrow button to hail the player affected. 2. Cancel the call. 3. Kick the tag-less person out of the party. 4. Re-invite them back into the party. Try the steps in escalating order until something works. PART 7. PREVAILING BUGS I CAN'T SEE MY FRIEND HE/SHE/IT IS INVISIBLE / I AM INVISIBLE 1. Find a nearby chair. 2. Sit down. 3. Get up. 4. Get your friend to do the same. These are usually caused by desync issues. I AM STUCK IN THIS GEOMETRY 1. Do an emote. Preferably one that moves your character like /sleep. 2. Pull your gun out, then put it back. 3. Suicide with BACKSPACE (Hold) as the final option. Preventive measure: Avoid running against walls, rock formations, corners, pits, weird level pieces. Take the straightest route possible. Do not spent any more time than you need to on areas that have colliders intersecting. (Between turrets and ship interiors) I AM STUCK IN MY SHIP'S SEAT LOL (Y KEY NOT WORKING) 1. Try holding F and using the Exit seat option. 2. Try holding Y (Eject Seat). 3. Try pressing CTRL + U (Quick Exit binding). 4. Ask your friend or passerby to punch you out cold out of the seat/ bed. Apply the steps in escalating fashion. PART 7. PREVAILING BUGS CHANNEL LOCAL HAS DISBANDED. 1. Nothing you can do about it. Server is dead. VOIP IS NOT WORKING 1. F11 (Comms) 2. Select the channel you wish to speak in. 3. Click the Connect to comms slider to turn it off. 4. Click the slider again to turn it back on. 5. Sometimes VOIP is just scuffed. Accept and move on. HALP MY SHIP IS MOVING ON ITS OWN / SPINNING LIKE A BEYBLADE 1. Might not be a bug. 2. Check that you are not on Decoupled. 3. Check that your cursor is aligned straight center and not pulling the ship in a rotation. 4. Winds may be bugged. 5. VTOL mode might be on/off inappropriately (J). 6. Check if your Cruise Control is on (C, arrow on speed). Turn it off to stop it. Apply the steps in escalating fashion. SHIP MFD SCREEN SHOWS NOTHING, POWER IS ON / I CAN'T STEER THE SHIP 1. Cycle power by pressing U and then pressing U again. 2. Get out of the pilot seat. 3. Get back in. Apply the steps in escalating fashion. PART 7. PREVAILING BUGS THE SHOP TERMINAL IS NOT SHOWING ANYTHING? 1. Wait a while... It might be loading. 2. Change to a different terminal. CHAT IS SAYING 30K 1. Type R_DisplayInfo 1 in your console (` tilde Key). 2. Check the BwIn (BandwidthIn) number. If it is 0, server has died. 3. Or check a nearby door if you can open it. 4. If server has not died, someone is likely trying to make you panic and leave so their friend can join. PART 8. USEFUL WEBSITES FOR CALCULATING YOUR DPS / TESTING LOADOUTS https://www.erkul.games/ OR https://hardpoint.io/#/ FOR CALCULATING TRADE ROUTES / PRICES https://www.gallog.co/ THAT REFERAL LINK SITE https://gorefer.me/randomizer/STAR MINING GUIDE https://space4games.com/en/games-en/star-citizen-mining/ OFFICIAL TELEMETRY https://robertsspaceindustries.com/telemetry FLEET PICS https://www.starship42.com/ THE ULTIMATE ONE WEBSITE TO LINK TO THEM ALL https://scfocus.org/resources/ THE OFFICIAL TUTORIAL PAGE https://robertsspaceindustries.com/playstarcitizen All links to resources made by passionate members of the Star Citizen Community. Do give them a look and use their referral codes when beats using a code that someone signing up. It rewards them and used Google ads disguised as an official link to bait people to use their referral. I do not take any credit for anything linked, I just pointed out that they exist. Contact the respective creators for more.