Welcome to our 108th newsletter on Star Atlas! This weekly newsletter focuses entirely on the development of this ambitious game and is published by Aephia Industries. Here, we try to aggregate all the newsworthy tidbits revealed [mainly by the team] throughout the past week.
The last month of the year has begun, and anticipation is rising as to what the team may, or may not release before the end of the year. So, we’re going to start there this time. On top of that, though the team did not reveal much new information, plenty of things happened that are worth sharing.
One absolute highlight this past week was Michael Wagner (CEO) mentioning that Star Atlas has been profitable in November! We’ll dive a little deeper into this in our Short Tidbits section, but we felt it warranted calling out in our intro. It all makes for a lengthy issue, so.. without further ado…
Let’s dive in!
One of the hottest topics right now -and really, it has always been- is the timeline for upcoming releases. Based on Michael’s latest comments in the FR (we asked permission to publish), we know that the following releases are still targeted for this year:
- The DAC Platform – The first MVP for the DAC platform, which will offer such things as DAC creation, registration, internal roles, and a public-facing information page.
- Showroom (Pre-)Release 2.1.9 – An intermediate build of the Showroom that will unlock large-scale multiplayer. This is not yet 2.2, as that won’t ready for a little longer, but it will allow us to help test the new multiplayer setup.
- SAGE: Not Yet Starbased – Starbased will be a 3D browser game that has everything SAGE Labs has, plus Starbase construction & upgrading. However, that won’t be finished in time for a release this year. Instead, we’ll get that 3D browser game with a feature set that is close to what SAGE Labs is currently offering.
On that last topic, the team is using the PlayCanvas engine to create their 3D browser game. You can best compare this to how the team is using Unreal Engine 5 to create their 3D desktop game. There has been some confusion on the topic, but the SAGE released later this year will use PlayCanvas (it is 3D, after all), but is not yet the official Starbased release.
So, what can we expect next year?
- Showroom (Pre-)Release 2.2 – This is the big one. Besides large-scale multiplayer, this will bring competitive ground-racing, ship configuration, and more to the masses. It will also ditch the access-codes gating mechanism, meaning everyone can download and play the game easily. We expect this won’t be released before the tail-end of Q1, 2024.
- SAGE: Starbased – The highly anticipated 3D browser game will bring us dynamic Starbases. You will need to construct Starbases and upgrade them to be able to unlock mining and higher-tier crafting recipes. Not just that, this will also introduce XP and LP (Loyalty Points) systems. These loyalty points will also (for the first time) unlock ATLAS earnings in the game. We expect this to be coming in the second half of Q1 2024.
- SAGE: Starbased + Combat – Although highly desired by many (including team members), Combat won’t be coming anytime soon. If all goes well, this may go live in Q2 2024, but we really don’t have enough information to make a solid guess. It could easily slip as well.
- Crew Packs & Snapshot – During Breakpoint (2023), the team announced Crew Packs coming in Q1, 2024. Meanwhile, we also picked up on Michael suggesting the snapshot won’t take place before the end of Q1, and it’s not a stretch to suggest that Crew Packs are not coming any earlier.
As an aside, Michael has more or less suggested that he expects to pick up work on the POLIS DAO in 2024 again. We don’t expect this to happen during the first half of the year, however. The team will likely first need to scale up a bit further.
SAGE Labs – v1.2
Last week, the team released another patch for SAGE Labs, and this one has a significant impact on the game economy. Basically, the team tightened the screws on various profitable ventures, making them.. less profitable. Read on below for the full patch notes (v1.2):
1) Adjusted extracting emission rate with proportional R4 burn reduction
In order to slow down the R9 game loop, we’ve decreased the extracting emission rate while also proportionally decreasing the R4 burn.
2) Reloaded select redemption recipes with increased crafting costs
- 3,000 Fimbul Airbikes (4x original cost)
- 3,000 Fimbul ECOS Unibombas (4x original cost)
- 3 Pearce R6s (4x original cost)
- 1 Fimbul BYOS Butch (4x original cost)
3) Updated ATLAS fee for crafting
The ATLAS fee for crafting is now 10% of the trailing 7-day craft market in-game price. This is for two reasons:
- Increased ATLAS sinks in SAGE Labs
- Curb asset emissions in SAGE Lab
The team hinted that there is another reason to implement #3, but that will be part of a future update that is coming soon.
Meanwhile, the team updated their Ship Stats spreadsheet with the changes!
For those paying attention, it will be no surprise that the Star Atlas economy, and really the wider crypto (gaming) ecosystem, is on its way up! Besides token prices reaching new highs for 2023, the amount of marketplace activity is also going up fast! The Aephia Data Runners have been keeping track of this for us:
Total trading volume is off the charts compared to the rest of the year, clearly signaling a shift in sentiment! Ships have been flying off the shelves as well, especially the Armstrong miners:
While secondary supply is dwindling, the team also saw huge primary sales happen this past week. Two remarkable highlights: The team’s supply of Tier 5 Claim Stakes on the Marketplace has now sold out. With Tier 1 and Tier 2 already gone, this means that only Tier 3 and Tier 4 Claim Stakes are still available (from the team).
On top of the Claim Stakes, the team has also sold the full supply of their discounted Armstrong IMP ships on the USDC side of the market. They have since gone ahead and added the remaining (not discounted) 50% of the supply. On the ATLAS side, discounted ships are still available, but with the increased valuation of ATLAS, this discount is pretty much non-existent at the moment.
The Armstrong ships are top performers when looking at potential APR at this point, which is likely the reason so many were sold this past week. These numbers far outperform any other ship in existence and also the Claim Stakes.
Speaking off the ATLAS side of things, the team will reprice all their assets on the ATLAS side of the Galactic Marketplace to be more in line with the current value of ATLAS (vs. USDC).
It’s unclear when this will happen, but it looks like the team will push this through imminently.
We’ve gathered some other news bits and pieces this past week, and though we mention them here briefly, some of them are quite big! Starting with the first item on the list:
- Star Atlas has been cashflow positive over November! Not only that, but they have been profitable that month as well! This marks a major milestone for the team and should encourage all of us that the team will be in a good place to continue working on this game for the foreseeable future!
- This past week, Star Atlas received a shout-out (on X) from the big man of Solana himself, Anatoly Yakovenko. He praised the game for its AAA quality and its crypto-native foundation.
- Never Alone – Mission 2: The second mission of the social Never Alone campaign for Star Atlas was officially meant to wrap up on November 30th. However, the team has gracefully extended the timeline to December 7th to allow more people to complete their final missions.
- Michael suggested a big announcement is forthcoming right after the publication of this newsletter. Keep your eyes peeled on Monday, 22:00 UTC. Of course, there is a fat chance that this news will already be out there by the time you read this.
Golden Ticket Raffle
During week 5, the 3rd Fimbul BYOS Tankship went out, being one of the top prizes of the whole Golden Ticket event. Week 6 has to suffice with slightly less expensive but still highly desirable ships, such as the VZUS ballad and the Busan Maiden Heart.
Story Writing Competition
In lore, this year, 2623, marks the 100-year anniversary of the Signing of the Treaty of Peace. In other words, the three major factions have been at peace for the last 100 years! This is a tremendous milestone and needs to be celebrated!
To that end, Aephia is organizing a short story writing competition, and everybody is invited! The team is helping out as well by sponsoring some of the prizes and taking care of the final round of judging!
Some important details:
- Needs to be 800-1200 words
- Deadline December 24th 23:59 UTC
- Submit on Aephia’s Discord – in the designated channel
In the spirit of Christmas and the celebration of 100 years of peace, the requirement is to write a short story that offers a view into some of the amazing things that have been possible due to there being peace between the MUD, ONI, and Ustur members.
You can read more about this in our official announcement!
Of course, there is also the People’s Choice! There are 30 games in that category, so your vote there is also much appreciated!
Voting closes on December 7th, 23:59 UTC! That means that this is the last heads-up you’ll get from us!
The biggest sneak peek is undoubtedly the image at the top of this issue. Michael did not comment on what we’re looking at, but it looks to be a potential (experimental) single-seater Tufa ship.
Besides that, Star Atlas concept artist Sören Meding has been sharing some more of his design work on ArtStation, such as:
That is it for this issue! See you next week!