Star Citizen's next milestone update has arrived, bringing the controversial space sim up to its alpha 3.6 release. Headline additions this time around include a complete law and order overhaul designed to make life a little tougher for those ne'er-do-wells among the stars.
Essentially, as a pilot's criminal record (or crime stat in Star Citizen parlance) increases, they'll encounter greater opposition from AI law enforcement and bounty hunters, and will find themselves more likely to be attacked and pursued.
Newly implemented regional jurisdictions have their own patrolling security forces, as well as their own lists of controlled substances. Security forces will immediately open fire on known felons or those in a stolen ship, but will merely demand a stop-and-scan on other vessels. Those that refuse to comply will gain a crime stat and be attacked, while those found with illegal goods onboard will be fined and have their contraband removed.
All of which should makes the skies safer for law-abiding players, and a little more interesting for those intent on living a more nefarious existence - especially with new crime-based smuggling missions, an enhanced black market economy, and expanded options for crime stat "hacking".
Alpha 3.6 also brings more varied station exteriors, the ability to purchase more than 90 ships via kiosks using in-game currency, flight model improvements (including a new Hover Mode for more authentic low-speed atmospheric flight), customisable weapons, and more.
Full details can be found in the 3.6 patch notes. And with that, Star Citizen - which has now amassed a staggering $230 million USD (around £184 million) in crowdfunding - inches a little further forward on its slow journey toward completion.