This is silly really; but since I’m tired of seeing it everywhere, and not responding, putting it all here means anyone can now just grab a link and go fight about it.
At the end of the day, they are different style games that share a common genre, have different production values, budget, teams and fan base etc. Comparison is futile.
Anyway, each of headings below, corresponds to one of the touted Star Citizen key features. I am using their feature list because if I were to include the complete Line Of Defense feature list, I would have to write a multi-page document that Star Citizen won’t have more than a few entries in.
So I’m going to keep it fair and only focus on their $85m, multi-studio (worldwide) feature set. They have a total of two (space combat, fps combat) key features. It’s kinda cute, really. And no, the hangar, persistent universe, and social/planetside modules, are not gameplay “features”. And SQ42 could pass for a feature, if it ends up with single and co-op play. Otherwise, it’s just a module that incorporates fps and space combat as far as I know.
In fact, the higher graphics fidelity (which I talk about in my Interstellar Citizens blog as well in my recent dev blog explaining why we opted for gameplay over visuals) in Star Citizen, is the only unique selling point of comparison, because comparing the two games is akin to comparing football and basketball just because a ball is in play, and there are people running around in shorts. Which is why comparing the two games is just silly because all they have in common is the space combat genre and an fps component.
And we’re perfectly happy with the graphics (1, 2) because a) that’s the art style I wanted b) any higher visual fidelity for such a massive multi-genre game, would mean beefy system requirements and a game that would be largely unplayable, given the number of clients (infantry, aerial, vehicle, naval) which can be in any scene (space doesn’t require that much processing) at any one time. So it was down to visuals vs gameplay. In all my games, I’ve gone with the latter.
Please note also that Line Of Defense is an indie game that went into development in 2010; and at the peak (during content creation) of development (we created our own custom engine), had around sixteen people working on it. To date, it has cost less than $20m to develop. All if it funded internally. Here is why we put it in [restricted] Early Access and this is what our dev updates and changelog look like.
No. It’s not that kind of the game. But is still bigger than what is currently in Arena Commander. And it already has accessible planets. With bases. Like, seriously.
The IP that the game is based on, has a much larger world from which a small section was carved out for this game. The Battlecruiser/Universal Combat games are the ones that use the entire universe in the IP. Through DLC, we plan to extend the LOD world until it spans the entire IP galaxy. We decided to start small.
Universal Combat CE 2.0 which uses the entire persistent universe, is currently free on Steam for anyone who wants to take a look and see how to do a massive, connected, persistent universe – with space and planets. And since that game is older now, that’s why I’m currently working on a design for a true sequel which I am going to be focused on after Line Of Defense and the Lyrius Expansion for UCCE20 are completed.
SEAMLESS SPACE & PLANETARY SCENES
Yes. It’s finished. And it works. You can read more about it here.
INTERNAL AREAS WITH LOCALIZED PHYSICS (Star Citizen)
MULTI-SHIP (Star Citizen)
Yes. It’s finished. And it works. Aside from the fact that most of the fighters (x12), gunships (x7) and shuttles (x4) are multi-ship, even the vehicles are multi-crew, some with dedicated driver and gunner seats. And we even have an automated transport system of shuttles.
SPACE COMBAT(Star Citizen)
Yes. It’s finished. And it works, the flight dynamics and controls, as in all my games, are top notch etc.
Yes. It’s finished. And it works. It includes, fps infantry, aerial, naval, vehicular combat
INFANTRY COMBAT (Star Citizen)
Yes. It’s almost (we still have some movement tweaks to do) finished. And it works. In fact, unlike Star Citizen’s scaled-down Star Marine module, this is a full blown component for LOD. It’s a whole system all by itself with lots and lots of weapons, items etc. And it works inside buildings, stations, ships, on planets etc.
We built the fps engine first on top of the massive world, then built everything else on top it. Why? Because the ability to exist in fps mode on the planet, inside buildings (on the planet or in space), ships etc, made it the most critical component of the game. Not the flying, or the driving, or any of that.
Then we did the aerial dynamics for the jetpacks (and later the wingsuit/wingchute) so that we could get around the massive game world and be able to test the experience and the scope. All the other dynamics (vehicle, aerial, space, naval) all came after.
In fact, it wasn’t until much later in the development, that I finalized the design for the HAIS (High Altitude Insertion Suit) because I wanted infantry players to be able to transition (videos 1, 2, 3, 4) from anywhere on the planet to another, or from an airlock in a station or carrier, to the planet below.
The fps component was critical to the game, so everything associated with it, needed to be done right.
SOCIAL HUB / PLANETSIDE (Star Citizen)
No. Don’t be silly. However, our scenes are so massive – and support so many players – that you can pretty much pick your own area to hang out in. In fact, the main deck on any of the four stations, is one huge central hub to hangout. Not to mention that the carrier itself has a massive dedicated rec/galley area on deck two.
What Star Citizen refers to as social hub/planetside, is just another restricted-access “level” that is an enclosed area. There is no “planet”.
PERSISTENT UNIVERSE (Star Citizen)
Uhm, yeah. Even my Battlecruiser/Universal Combat games had this – at this scale (!). While Star Citizen just recently (this July) got 16 (!) players working in Arena Commander, since day one our world was designed to, and supports a large number of people in a massive persistent world – no sharding, no instancing. Online 24-7, hop-in, hop-out. No fuss. No muss.
STORYLINE (Star Citizen)
ps: For those who tend not to read comments, please read this one.