Star Citizen Brings Great HUD Design and Zero-G Multiplayer

At its fan event this weekend in Australia, Cloud Imperium Games launched a new FPS demo for its highly anticipated PC space sim, Star Citizen. Along with some new ship designs and environments, the demo showed some impressive multiplayer gameplay, HUD design, and zero gravity firefights. We've provided you with the demo's video below followed by our breakdown of Star Citizen's game play and HUD design elements. The Star Citizen demo highlighted some slick FPS multiplayer action as team members engaged in a firefight inside a base. The player's HUD has a minimalist design with readouts displaying ammo and weapons indicators along with a motion tracker. The top of the HUD follows the contour of the helmet's shield with readouts indicating tactical, medical, and overview modes. The HUD readouts are semi-transparent, so they provide plenty of feedback while not hindering the field of view.When players zoom in to iron sights, the HUD displays disappear completely, increasing visuals to compensate for the narrower view. One nice touch of realism we noticed was the condensation fog from the player's breath appearing on the helmet's glass shield when zoomed in. This is subtle design element that provides big payoffs in terms of immersion. Another great functional quality of the readout displays is that they change from blue to orange when threats are near. The color change is simple way to indicate danger without adding more info to the HUD.

Condensation fog appears inside the HUD


One of the most interesting aspects of Star Citizen’s gameplay was the zero gravity firefight, which requires players to plan their movements more strategically when advancing, flanking, or retreating. Zero gravity also means floating debris and cover materials like crates and boxes. The idea of floating behind moveable cover as you make your way towards opposing players could create some interesting opportunities for the game’s multiplayer. Although the zero gravity physics seemed realistic overall, we did notice that long blasts of weapon fire did not appear to affect players’ inertia, either propelling them backwards or slowing their advance.

Star Citizen definitely seems like a game to follow if your looking for some AAA quality design models or inspiration. It’s record-breaking crowdfunding campaign testifies to its popularity among players. Add to this the great multiplayer action and design that’s evident within the demo, it certainly seems as if Star Citizen is set for some longevity in the gaming and online market place.