Star Citizen's multi-crew ships blast off at Gamescom

Star Citizen 1

Cloud Imperium Games debuted Star Citizen's multi-crew ships at Gamescom and, for the benefit of those who weren't there, PCGamesN has posted a video of the demo on YouTube. It's not the most action-packed thing ever—it takes until around the 4:30 mark before things really start to happen—but it sure is pretty.

Multi-crew ships are exactly what they sound like: Relatively large vessels that are crewed by multiple players. One player takes the controls, others can man turrets, and it's even possible (although perhaps kind of dangerous, if your pilot is a jerk) to open a door and go for a spacewalk. It's not the most revolutionary idea ever, but crewed vessels can be all kinds of fun, as players hop aboard what is basically a party bus with guns and run around causing grief for everyone. And it sounds like that's more or less what Cloud Imperium has mind.

"You’re not going to have 50 systems to adventure in, but I think most people are going to have a lot of fun," founder Chris Roberts said. "I’m actually expecting people to make up their own action story arc. So what we’re planning is, we’ll just have different areas you can fly in and visit and do things in, or have some AI that will spawn."

Objectives will also be left largely for the players to set themselves. Roberts said he's considering something like a "freeflight mode," but with "more team-oriented stuff where you could have a combination of the bigger multi-crew ships and the smaller [ones]. A team battle thing. It should be pretty good."

Andy Chalk

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.