Welcome to our 116th newsletter on Star Atlas! This weekly newsletter, published by Aephia Industries, focuses entirely on the development of this ambitious game. Here, we try to aggregate all the newsworthy tidbits revealed [mainly by the team] throughout the past week.
Last week was pretty action-packed despite there being no gameplay releases or updates. The team launched a new XXS racing ship and made 3 limited edition skins available, but with a twist. In addition, they released the 6th and final episode of CORE Act 2! Lastly, we received more details on Crew members, and a former Econ team member has been working hard to provide us with early DAC Analysis. This will be a somewhat longer one, so strap in!
CORE – Issue 12 Released
It’s been two months since the team released a new Star Atlas Graphic Novel: CORE issue, but this past Wednesday, the team finally released the long-awaited finale of Act 2!
As you may know, CORE will consist of 18 issues, split into 3 Acts with 6 issues each. With this 12th issue, they have wrapped up Act 2. All Act 1 and Act 2 issues are now freely available for your reading pleasure!
The team also sells limited edition SFT (Semi-Fungible Token) covers for every issue on their marketplace, which come in two flavors. For a long time, one flavor was sold on the Galactic Marketplace, and the other was solely available on Magic Eden. Unfortunately, due to some technical changes on the side of Magic Eden, the team can no longer sell their SFTs there. This means that the previous 2 “alternative covers” have been sold on the Galactic Marketplace instead, usually 1 to 2 weeks after the Star Atlas-specific variant went on sale. It stands to reason that this will also occur for this 12th issue.
The limited edition Star Atlas cover can now be acquired for 20 USDC on the Galactic Marketplace.
When Tim McBurnie (the author) and the team finished Act 1, they took a few months off to prepare accordingly before launching Act 2. It’s not yet clear if that will happen this time as well, but there likely will be a break of sorts for Tim to catch his breath and prepare for the final act in the series!
Last Monday, the team released the new Ogrika Ruch ship on the Galactic Marketplace. This XX-small, single-seater racer ship is being offered for 15 USDC or 3900 ATLAS (roughly $17 at the time of writing, but $15 when it hit the market).
The team published a nice reveal video for the ship, which also shows off the special Jupiter skin (more on that below).
With the Fimbul Airbike’s price on the secondary market climbing to about $10, it looks like the team figured it was time for a new addition to this class. At $15, the Ogrika Ruch is being introduced at the same price as the Fimbul Airbike (there are still well over 70k Fimbul Airbike available at that price point). The team also still has stock available for the Pearce X4 and the VZUS solos, both being sold at $20.
When compared to the stats of other XXS racing ships (see the official ship stats spreadsheet), the Ogrika Ruch’s sub-warp and max-warp capabilities rank the lowest, though it is the most efficient in terms of fuel/movement spent. At this stage of the game, its most interesting claim to fame may be that it costs 9 toolkits/scan, compared to 10 for the VZUS solos, Opal Jet, and Fimbul Airbike (the other racing ships).
Of course, the Pearce X4 outclasses all racing ships, including the Ogrika Ruch, but it also has a higher price point. For completeness, let’s mention the only other ship in this size class, the Fimbul Unibomba. It is the best scanner in this size class by far, but as it’s also the most expensive XXS ship (by far), at $35 from the team, it’s not really playing in the same league.
Limited Edition Skins
This past Monday, in sync with the Ogrika Ruch, its three limited edition skins also became available for purchase. In a move that surprised many, although it made sense in hindsight, the team announced that they would sell these through their partner, NeoSwap. It proved too complex to introduce new currencies on the Galactic Marketplace, forcing the team to distribute these via a 3rd party platform instead.
Another surprise was the relatively high price, with the price points for these cosmetic skins lying well above the price of the ship they are meant for.
- Jupiter skin: $30 equivalent in $JUP
- Puri skins: $20 equivalent (each) in $PURI
However, there proved to be plenty of interest in these skins due to their limited nature and the fact that many in the community had received PURI & JUP as an airdrop (so “free” money).
At the moment of publication of this newsletter, the window to acquire these skins is rapidly closing, with a little over an hour left to go. The sales of these skins will wind down on Monday, February 12, 20:00 UTC. At some point after this, the Galactic Marketplace will open up to trade these skins.
When a skin is bought on NeoSwap, the service immediately converts the tokens used for the purchase into USDC, which makes sense for retailers who want to ensure they get a specific amount of USDC per sale. However, this does not really work if you want to receive the token used to purchase the skins instead.
In the case of PURI, the team intended for these sales to support the meme token. Though the team’s recognition through this special skin was much welcomed, the thin liquidity for PURI available on the DEXes meant that the initial surge to buy these skins drove the token price into the ground.
This came as a surprise to many, including the team, who had expected the price to go up, instead of down, due to people buying PURI to acquire the skins. To alleviate this adverse effect, at some point, the team spent a decent portion of the USDC they received from NeoSwap to buy back PURI from the market.
During last week’s Atlas Brew, the community team shared some more information on what we can expect from the Crew members / Crew cards that will be released later this year.
Some Background First
While currently absent in the ecosystem, crew members will play a major role in the future. Not only are they required to operate the various ships in your fleet, but they are also needed to operate facilities on the surface (e.g., mining, refining) and space stations (e.g., crafting, trading). In short, without a crew, you won’t be able to do anything in Star Atlas.
Now, as the player, you can control any one of these crewmembers as your personal avatar. And you will be able to change whenever you so desire.
In the future, crewmembers will be dropped to all ship owners based on a snapshot that will be announced beforehand (right before the drop). In addition, you will be able to buy crew packs that come with 5 crewmembers of random rarity each. The rarity primarily concerns the aptitudes (non-upgradable stats) a crew member comes with.
At the initial release, the overwhelming majority of these crewmembers will be humans. However, this is not because the team favors them or for lore reasons. It is simply because the team is farthest along with generating humans in UE5, which are used for the art on the cards – ensuring that the cards accurately represent how your crewmembers will look in-game. In later phases of the game, members of other species will also become available.
At this point, 7 aptitudes are known, divided into minor and major aptitudes (e.g., Flight). As mentioned before, these are linked to the crew member’s rarity.
Having the right aptitude for something means that a crew member will be able to progress faster in performing related tasks than others who lack it. It also means they’ll receive a bonus (added to a random factor) while performing that task. The team identified 14 tasks (e.g., piloting, navigating) that crew members can perform so far.
Crew members come with traits that provide bonuses, which can be identified by the icons beneath the member’s name (the three icons below Erin in the image above).
The team is applying the OCEAN model to ensure all of the crewmembers have different traits and personalities. Every crew member has different values for the 5 personality traits (openness, conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness, and neuroticism). These will impact in-game mechanics.
This will create a new meta-game where assembling the right crew with the right traits (that work well together) can give you a significant bonus.
In addition, every crew member will have his or her own background story based on the extensive lore written by the team.
One final bit of alpha dropped by Jose (Chief Noot) is that crew members can have weapons and items that influence their stats. It’s not that big of an alpha leak, as the team has been selling (and dropping) such items ever since the Rebirth Campaign concluded. We also knew that hand weapons were coming, but most may not yet have considered arming their crew when not using that member as their avatar. It will likely improve their chances of survival if you put them in dangerous situations.
As noted in our 111th newsletter, we do not expect crewmembers (or the mobile companion app) to be launched before Q3 of 2024.
With the DAC registration being live for a little over a week, Steven Sabol (former Star Atlas Econ team member and, at present, Chief Economist @W3EconomicLabs) compiled a bunch of interesting statistics. You can view all of these on his DAC-focused FlipsideCrypto Dashboard, but we included some below (updated up until the time of publication)!
Now, clearly, not all relevant wallets have been added to the various DACs. As such, these are really the bottom thresholds for the Lockers or the JUP airdrop. However, as this goes for all DACs, these numbers still provide an interesting overview of where the various DACs stand.
Though it is not DAC-related, it is good to mention that Steven also created a dashboard focused on OTC trades within the Star Atlas community. It’s well worth looking into if you’re curious about this.
Beyond the Ogrik Ruch and its skins, the team did not share that much in the way of new visuals with the masses. The one expectation is this closer look at the small Pearce Energy Rapidfire weapons:
That’s it for this issue! See you next week!