Star Citizen Devs Talk Mining & AI Control In Reverse The Verse

Star Citizen mining will begin with the Prospector and a basic laser. In this week’s Reverse The Verse, CIG explained how the feature will work. Star Citizen is in alpha for backers on PC.
Star Citizen mining will begin with the Prospector and a basic laser. In this week’s Reverse The Verse, CIG explained how the feature will work. Star Citizen is in alpha for backers on PC. Cloud Imperium Games

Star Citizen fans enjoyed a new episode of Reverse The Verse on Friday, and we’ve got a full recap for you to enjoy. Over a 60-minute chat, Cloud Imperium Games Live Game Director Todd Papy and Lead System Designer Dan Trupin discussed mining and how AI will make the universe feel real.

Here are all the major points that came from the interview.


  • Mining is designed to be a challenging task that involves balancing the output of your laser based on the materials you’re trying to extract. When gathering scrap from ore, for example, there will always be a risk of putting in too much power and damaging your character or ship.
  • Tier 0 of the mining feature, which is currently set to debut alongside alpha 3.2 in June, will focus on Prospector mining with a basic tractor beam and damage thresholds. It will evolve over time.
  • Planetside mining will be implemented early, and mining on land versus off land is going to feel different. It will be based on the same idea of power balance, but it will feel different.
  • There may be a multitool that extracts everything, but it won’t be very efficient if it exists. We want players to swap tools to find the right one for the job.
  • Right now the plan is to only allow mining ships to mine. You can’t add a mining laser to any ship.
  • Heavy mining can deplete an entire node, but it gets harder to mine the more materials you take away. Materials in deposits will replenish over time, but the team is still trying to figure out how that will work.
  • In the early days, all mining will be first-come-first-serve on any plot of land. Once land claims are introduced in later alphas, valuable parcels can be purchased.


  • Controlling NPCs will function much like an order queue in an RTS game. AI behavior should do most of the heavy lifting, but you’ll be able to tell characters specifically what to do. Other human players in your fleet will be able to see this string of orders too. Drones will operate from the same interface, and they’ll always respond to your orders.
  • There are several factors that can determine an AI’s capacity to follow an order. If they don’t like you because they haven’t been fed or you have a bad relationship, they may not do what you tell them. Character traits will also determine how well the job is carried out.
  • These traits should be considered when hiring AI. You want the best character for the job. Certain personality traits may be revealed the more you interact, but players will still have an idea of basic skillset from the start.
  • Hiring personnel like a cook will make AI like you. If you haven’t showered, AI may avoid you or raise prices to make you leave their shop.
  • AI flying your ships will probably be limited because the intent is for players to be active. There shouldn’t be one player who buys a bunch of ships with AI controlling all of them. AI comes bundled with its own ship to help you decide if that character is worth hiring.
  • AI is designed to be favored in the PU by a 9-to-1 ratio.
  • It won’t be telegraphed which characters are human and which are AI, but you’ll probably be able to tell by how they act and the organizations they’re in.
  • Autopilot hasn’t really been considered, but it sounds cool.
The Orion is another major Star Citizen miner.
The Orion is another major Star Citizen miner. Cloud Imperium Games


  • Repair will start with scraping a hull and repainting. Salvage will be the inverse of that in terms of stripping, mulching, extraction and siphoning.
  • Different bodysuits will alter your character’s ability to sustain g-force.
  • It takes around 41 minutes to travel the Stanton System end to end.
  • Exploration involves scanning short and long-range areas to find information. You may discover a great mining spot, and it’s your choice to sell that information or keep it to yourself.
  • Actions in the universe will unfold in a way that encourages variety. You may come across an event specifically because your character hasn’t engaged in that task in a while.
  • Blind quantum is still being discussed. There are concerns it may be exploited to shorten exploration or avoid combat.
  • We want replaceable ships parts and panels as soon as possible, but it’s not a high priority at the moment.
  • The idea of players modifying components to sell ones with the best stats will be limited. Modifications will only offer small advantages.

Those are all the major updates found in this week’s Reverse The Verse. Be sure to check out our latest Around The Verse recap to learn about 2018’s first concept ship, the Aegis Vulcan. There’s also a new episode of Calling All Devs set to go live on Monday.

Star Citizen alpha 3.0.1 is available now on PC.

What are your thoughts on mining in the Star Citizen universe? Is that a career you’d want to have? Tell us in the comments section!

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