A day before update version 2.6.2 goes live on Star Citizen, developer Cloud Imperium Games revealed details regarding the Mega Map. Vice-President of Marketing Sandi Gardiner and CG Supervisor Forrest Stephan took the lead in explaining, during their Around the Verse YouTube series, what the Star Citizen Mega Map does.
According to Roberts Space Industries, the Star Citizen Mega Map is one of the major features they focused on including in the game. In simpler terms, Stephan said that the purpose of the new feature is to eliminate the loading screens. It basically streamlines the object containers while loading both in and out of areas and from the different game modes.
Aside from shorter loading screens, Gardiner added that the goal of the Star Citizen Mega Map is to allow players to travel through the universe without interruption or lag time. After giving a gist of what Mega Map would do for the game, they called Lead Gameplay Designer Rob Johnson to further explain the feature.
Decrease & Remove Loading Screens
According to Johnson, the Mega Map is a feature that they decided to include in Star Citizen to cut the frustrations with load times since it would remove loading screens altogether. Instead of using the previous Level Map Full Load, which crippled the memory and performance of PCs, developers used object containers with the Mega Map.
Object containers would contain the different segments of Star Citizen that players can load when needed. However, objects in itself would require them to wait for a series of load screens that move about in the game. The Mega Mega grid itself is empty upon startup and it will cause the low memory usage and increased performance for PCs.
Once the Mega Map is loaded, it starts to fill up with contents of various game modes, fire, and object containers. The front end of Star Citizen will have a set of object containers of each game mode in the game. Clicking any of them will explain the game rules for such mode.
Instead of waiting for Star Citizen to load the next screen as a mode is selected, it loads it out altogether beforehand. It would reduce the loading times only into a couple of seconds, allowing players to go back and forth between menus without wasting much time.
Once players have finally selected a game mode, it would throw away the previous object containers and load in new ones. Developers plan on completely removing loading times in Star Citizen in future updates since the Mega Map only reduces loading for some parts of the game into a few seconds.