Star Citizen's dogfighting module delayed to allow for fine tuning, better server backend

We last checked in with Star Citizen three weeks ago , and so presumably the unstoppable crowdfunding juggernaut has made some serious money since then. Well, yes - multiple millions, in fact - but for once that's not what this news is about. The ambitious space-'em-ups roadmap had planned for the release of a dogfighting module at the end of this month, giving backers a taste of the game's combat. In an address to the community, Chris Roberts has now revealed that the launch is being delayed by a couple of months.

"I feel that the Dogfighting module, especially with Star Citizen's greatly increased profile, needs to be more polished than a typical 'alpha'," writes Roberts in his lengthy update . "There are a lot of eyes on the game, and more than a few people wanting us to fail. Because Dogfighting is the first module that will involve significant gameplay, it has to be good – I don't feel that we will get a pass just because it is pre-pre alpha.

"So we had two choices: either fork development and spend time building something that would involve throwing away work in order to meet the December deadline and deliver something that wouldn't have the level of polish I'm happy with, or stay on course to build something that would lead directly into the finished game."

The ultimate upshot is that Roberts is "going to make the tough choice to delay the dogfighting module for a couple of months to allow us to take our time and deliver something special."

That time is being used to create a custom server backend, rather than - as was once planned - using CryEngine's built-in netcode for dogfighting. In addition, "there is a lot of finesse and detail that needs to go in to get the dogfighting ready for the community's consumption – The HUD, Damage states, various FX," Roberts explains. "These are all in progress and look very promising but in my personal opinion aren't quite ready for prime time."

Star Citizen has now raised over $34 million. In the last few weeks, achieved stretch goals have unlocked a selection of new ships and hull types, the details of which you can see here .

Phil Savage

Phil has been writing for PC Gamer for nearly a decade, starting out as a freelance writer covering everything from free games to MMOs. He eventually joined full-time as a news writer, before moving to the magazine to review immersive sims, RPGs and Hitman games. Now he leads PC Gamer's UK team, but still sometimes finds the time to write about his ongoing obsessions with Destiny 2, GTA Online and Apex Legends. When he's not levelling up battle passes, he's checking out the latest tactics game or dipping back into Guild Wars 2. He's largely responsible for the whole Tub Geralt thing, but still isn't sorry.