Archived News:

Saturday, Nov 17, 2018

Star Citizen Passes $200M

The Stretch Goals page on the Roberts Space Industries website shows that fundraising for Star Citizen and Squadron 42 has now passed the $200 million dollar mark (thanks Eurogamer). The exact figures as of this writing are $200,012,699 in funding from 2,121,295 contributors, a remarkable $94.29 each. This campaign launched in 2012 to fund a game expected in 2014, but the endless support from backers has lead to the protracted development of two games that currently remain in the alpha stage. This feature creep has inspired vocal criticism, but as this new milestone demonstrates, many Star Citizens remain loyal to the project. According to Wikipedia this is the fourth-highest sum ever raised through crowdfunding. More striking is how that list of crowdfunding successes is dominated by speculative blockchain projects. Star Citizen has actually raised one thousand percent more capital than the second game on that list, the $19 million locked up by Prison Architect.

PUBG Fixed

A Dev Letter on Steam for PLAYERUNKNOWN'S BATTLEGROUNDS declares the "FIX PUBG" campaign a success. It was back in August that PUBG Corporation set out to address fundamental issues with the battle royale shooter. Now they detail fixes and optimizations in place for client performance, server performance, matchmaking, anti-cheat measures, and, of course, bugs. Here's how they sum things up, admitting there is still more work to be done, and also promising they are emphasizing build stability in the future, instead of whatever their main priority was before this:
Throughout our game’s journey, our main goal was to provide you new content quickly, while supplementing Battle Royale gameplay. We acknowledge that in this process, we have overlooked issues that matter to you and we have reflected a lot on our mistakes. Something like this requires not only considerable effort, but extra care to ensure that bugs remain fixed and do not impact anything else.

Therefore, when designing the 2019 PUBG roadmap, we’ve changed our direction from this last year. Build stability and quality are now our most important value, and upon that base we will build new Battle Royale gameplay and new content. At first, this is likely to slow down our build cadence, but as these processes become more proficient, we hope to provide new content as fast as before, while maintaining our new stability and quality-first goal. While we cannot say how long this will take, we promise you that we will give our best efforts to reach this stage as quickly as possible.

Three months have passed since the announcement of the FIX PUBG. We know there are many things to improve upon, but we do have a sense that we more accurately feel what you, the players want and need. While this is the end of the FIX PUBG campaign, we will go forward in our development, improve our processes, and redouble our efforts with the lessons learned.

Destiny 2 Black Armory Next Month

The latest This Week At Bungie update reveals a December 4th launch date for the Black Armory DLC for Destiny 2 (thanks GamesRadar+). The related Season of the Forge event starts a week earlier than that on November 27th, and the developer explains how that transition period will work:
A Heck of a Week
In recent weeks, some players have noticed that Season of the Forge begins on November 27, but Black Armory becomes available on December 4.

Just like the release of Forsaken before it, there will be a one-week window in which Destiny 2 will be in a state of transition, and players may encounter a number of unforeseen issues.

The Destiny Player Support team is currently working to consolidate a list of temporary changes that may impact the player experience during this week-long window. In the meantime, we would like to remind players that issues encountered in-game are best reported to our #Help forum. When we have more information to share about this week-long transition, we’ll be sure to let you know.

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews


Out of the Blue

I sent a text to my uncle at NIST congratulating him on the successful conclusion of the project to make the block of platinum and iridium walk the Planck and redefine the kilogram based on fundamental physical constants. This was appropriate since he's been working on this for more than 20 years (here is a letter he co-wrote on the topic back in the 20th century). I made a joke that he and his cohorts now need to start working on redefining a "jiffy," and his response cracked me up. "Don't joke," he replied. "Somebody in CA mounted a campaign to make 'hella' a unit." Now that's the kind of accessible science I think we can all get behind.

Links: Thanks Ant.
Stories: US Department of Agriculture recalls turkey products, Thanksgiving near. Thanks LinkedIn.
Violent Conflict In The Congo Is Hampering Efforts To Fight Ebola Outbreak. Thanks RedEye9.
Science: Enigmatic ridges on Pluto may be the remains of vanished nitrogen glaciers.
Media: Squirrel Obstacle Course.
Extremely subtle product placement. It's the Isotoner gloves, right?
Tippy tap. Thanks OldElfin.
Follow-up: Argentina submarine: ARA San Juan found. Thanks RedEye9.
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