When we went up for a chat with the Star Citizen folks a little while back the conversation inevitably turned towards system requirements. It's no secret by now that Cloud Imperium Games has some pretty lofty ambitions for its spacefaring epic, chiefly in regard to the sheer scope of the project, which is unlike any other.
Predictably Star Citizen is a demanding beast. As it stands the minimum requirements for the alpha release, which currently just includes just the dogfighting and hangar modules, are already pretty demanding. The alpha asks for a decent quad core CPU and 8GB memory for a minimum, and that's without the large-scale persistent universe which is set to go live next year. We had a chat with Foundry 42's Erin Roberts, who made it pretty clear they were aiming as high as possible for the system requirements at launch. It's worth bearing in mind that these predicted Star Citizen system requirements are in no way official, but based on our chats with Erin this is what we at GD think they could be.
Star Citizen Predicted Minimum System Requirements
- OS: Windows Vista 64-bit
- CPU: Intel Core i5-2500K 3.3GHz or AMD Phenom II X4 940 3.0GHz
- RAM: 8GB System Memory
- GPU RAM: 2GB Graphics Memory
- GPU: Nvidia GeForce GTX 670 or AMD Radeon HD 7970
- HDD: 50GB Free Hard Drive Space
- DX: DirectX 11
Star Citizen Predicted Recommended System Requirements
- OS: Windows 7 64-bit
- CPU: Intel Core i7-3770 3.4GHz or AMD FX-8350 4.7GHz
- RAM: 12 GB System Memory
- GPU RAM: 3GB Graphics Memory
- GPU: Nvidia GeForce GTX 780 or AMD Radeon R9 290X
Star Citizen Predicted Ultra System Requirements
- OS: Windows 10 64-bit
- CPU: Intel Core i7-5960X 8-Core 3.0GHz or AMD FX-9590 4.7GHz
- RAM: 16 GB System Memory
- GPU RAM: 4GB Graphics Memory
- GPU: Nvidia GeForce GTX 980 or AMD Radeon R9 390X
- DX: DirectX 12
These are not Erin Roberts', Foundry 42 or Cloud Imperium Games' official Star Citizen system requirements, but are instead what we predict they will be.
Before you panic, the launch of Star Citizen is still several months away. When we chatted with Erin he might it pretty clear that they were shooting high here, claiming that Cloud Imperium Games was aiming for today's high-end gaming PCs to be the minimum for Star Citizen. All the PCs at at Foundry 42 were kitted out with GTX 780s, and it's here that we expect the recommended requirements to be. Looking forward of course and 2014 is sure to be the year of DirectX 12; Erin said that his team are already looking toward it, hopefully to take advantage of all of the benefits it should offer.
"We've always, Chris especially, just pushed the hardware, and that's what we're trying to do here. All the hardware manufacturers love us," explained Erin. "Back in the day Starlancer was a reason to have a high-end PC, and now there are very few reasons outside of maybe working with some 3D packages and things like that these days. We are unashamedly pushing the hardware, and yes, if you have a really decent high-end machine you will have a better experience.
"We're specifically targeting the PC market because what we're trying to do wouldn't run on a console right now. We want to just push it to make the best fidelity and graphics possible. PC gamers have got these awesome PCs with these great graphics cards but what's the point? So we're doing it the other way around, delivering an experience to maximise the power on offer."
As it stands 8 gigabytes of RAM is the minimum for the current alpha, and we're not expecting this to go down for the final launch. The plan is for large-scale space battles featuring dozens upon dozens of ships, including on-foot troops boarding other ships which can be upwards of a kilometre long. Star Citizen's most definitely going to be a demanding beast when cranked all the way up, and the level of detail on offer across such a large scale has to be seen to be believed. Obviously these could be drastically different from the final product, particularly if CIG can work on some serious optimisations and capitalise on the benefits of DX12, but we should no sure midway through 2015 when the persistent universe hopefully goes live.
If you want to quickly see how Star Citizen will run on your PC then remember you can now take GD with you to check any website against any PC using our Chrome GD Anywhere Extension.
What do you make of CIG's lofty aims to make Star Citizen one of the most demanding PC experiences out there? Would you prefer they scaled a back a little for lower-end hardware or do you want Star Citizen to truly push what PC gaming is capable of? Let us know what you think below!