An enterprising dataminer has dug up a 3D model of an entire city from the code of the sprawling, troubled life-in-space-sim Star Citizen. It's not terribly detailed, thanks in large part to the fact that “Max” had to compress it “pretty heavily” in order to upload it, but it's absolutely huge—and you can play with it!
Be aware that if you do play with it, there's a good likelihood that it will bring your browser to its knees, because it eats up about 2GB of ram on top of whatever else you've got going on. (I accidentally opened it in two separate tabs, and spent the subsequent few minutes trying to make it all go away.) And because the model was “extracted and reconstructed from Star Citizen game files,” it may be more akin to a facsimile of Cloud Imperium's ambitions than a precise replica of something we might one day encounter in the game. But it's there. Say what you will about the studio's ability to achieve its goals, but it's certainly not aiming low.
Prime, as the Roberts Space Industries website explains, is the capital city of Terra, “a beautiful bayside megacity built on the foundations of two of the original colony ships.” It was designed from the outset to achieve a “greater balance between nature and civilization than is found elsewhere in the Empire,” but it's still a happening place, with everything a citizen of the stars could ever need. Couple this with what we saw of the planetary landing during the Star Citizen presentation at Gamescom, and you can see why people continue to hope that this game will one day come together as promised.
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Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.