Download Pioneer

We regularly produce builds of Pioneer to make it easy for players to try out recent developments and to get feedback and ideas. We’d love for you to take Pioneer for a spin. These are unfinished development snapshots, and are lots of fun!

Binary builds

Pre-built copies of the game are available for the following platforms. (See GitHub releases for older releases)

Release: Pioneer 2021-02-03

First official release in a year, on the day, so suit up, and jump into your ship for an epic adventure into the infinite depth of space. As usual, please see changelog for the full list of features, code improvements, and bug fixes, but a selection focusing on what is noticeable for seasoned fellow pioneers follows.

Major changes and new features

Among the major changes, that you'll hopefully notice in-game, is the move of our UI to the more flexible Imgui library (which we call "PiGui"), something that's been ongoing for years, is now almost done. Another, is vastly improved combat, through aim assist; as well as improved trading, through completely re-balanced commodity prices. Something that might throw off seasoned players: we now have consistent use of MMB (Middle Mouse Button) for rotating camera in both worldview (i.e. cockpit) as well as in sector- and system view, rather than RMB. Other notable milestones are:

  • New ship: Skipjack Courier from OKB Kaluri (#4871)
  • New model: Escape pods (initially only to be scooped up, not purchasable) (#4877)
  • Improve combat targeting by adding aim assist for player weapons (#5037)
  • Complete overhaul of commodity prices, to be similar to Frontier (#4831)
  • Redesign System and Sector Map View layouts (#4852)
  • NewUI is dead, long live PiGui! (#5032)
  • More lively station traffic control communications (#4987)
  • Ship-specific atmospheric pressure limits (#4958)
  • Add surface impact alerts #4891
  • Captains log added (#4795)
  • Show background stars in system view (#5068)
  • Show surface starports in system view (#5060)
  • Significantly reduce savefile sizes (#5075)
  • New BBS advert for soldout commodity (#5059)

Minor changes

  • Refactor the ModelViewer to use PiGui (#4849)
  • Convert Police screen to PiGui (#4790)
  • Port Crew Roster to PiGui (#5022)
  • Port Active Missions display to PiGui (#5025)
  • Move ShipRepair screen to PiGui (#4791)
  • Move Bulletin Board view to PiGui (#4775)
  • Move economy & trade to pigui (#4067)
  • Move the System Map to PiGui (#4821)
  • Move Economy & Trade -view to pigui (#4967)
  • Move planar radar widget to pigui (#5081)
  • Move comms to entirely in lua (#5008)
  • New unified color theme (42 semantic aliases) and new icons (#4993)
  • Add theme color display/editor to debug menu (#4979)
  • Make thruster upgrades availabile based on tech level (#4956)
  • Stars that are brighter are now bigger and have a brighter colour on the Starfield (#4833)
  • Make police non-persistent in Goodstrader, like in Frontier (#4796)
  • Recon/combat missions now require radar #4916
  • Add Star's End system on the other side of the galaxy (#4873)
  • Merge 36 Ophiuchi & Gliese 664 into a single star system (#4874)
  • Show the ship's translated name in savegame stats (#4953)
  • Plentiful tweaks to sector map (#4906)
  • Make size of load/save dialogue window sane (#4912)
  • Reduce hydrogen price back to 1 credit (#4859)
  • Update advice for Goodstrader, reflecting new behaviour (#4824)
  • Move ship jump state strings to translation system (#4814)
  • Re-introduce support for remote Lua console (#4799)
  • Make continue button load _quicksave if autosave not active (#4758)
  • Commodities and Economies are now defined in JSON (#4944)
  • Add tag display to ModelViewer (#5010)
  • Add a selection highlight to the ship market list (#4999)
  • Overhaul body names in the 1 Orionis system (#5042)
  • Use new icons in Worldview (#5042)
  • Show commodity import/export information in market (#5082)
  • Update several system's names to use alternate name feature (#5083)
  • Adjust mission payouts to more natural numbers (#5050)
  • Improved missile damage calculations, slightly boosted damage (#4927)
  • Add menu and ingame music from franzopow (#5027)
  • Added lower-cost 5MW mining laser (#5037)
  • Buffed local delivery mission payouts, reduced fuel costs (#5037)
  • Decrease the maximum background star size to 0.3 (#4991)
  • Reduce probability for imported goods to be sold out (#5074)
  • Donate to cranks advert improvements (#5073)
  • Scottish place name revision (#5052)
  • Many fixes to system map (#5123)

Bug fixes

A selection of some of the more notable/important bugfixes, that we hope you never experienced in the first place.

  • Fix starting a new game charging a docking fee (#5000)
  • Fix radar display state being incorrectly saved (#4999)
  • Fix jump range being improperly persisted across games (#4999)
  • Fix ship displays not properly updating between games / selections (#4999)
  • Fix tradeships inflating save files with 1000s of duplicate cargo items (#4993)
  • Fix external camera causing segfaults/crashes under some circumstances (#4999)
  • Fix saved games in external camera resetting to internal camera on load (#4999)
  • Fix zenith indicator not pointing away from the planet (#4999)
  • Allow all ships with hyperdrives to be selected for rendezvous missions (#5002)
  • Clear starports array if system has no population (#4950)
  • No more crashes when hyperjumping (#4907)
  • Fix ship directional indicators not pointing in the correct direction (#4941)
  • Fix requring a camera frame when drawing PiGui (#4941)
  • Fix being able to load invalid save versions (#4945)
  • Fix compilation on i686 builds (#4945)
  • Fix atmospheric flight calculations (#4946)
  • Fix buying commodities not subtracting station stock (#4909)
  • Fix hyperdrive last service date being wrong (#4910)
  • Fix player sometimes exiting hyperspace inside a star (#4905)
  • Correctly restart mission timer when loading saves (#4870)
  • Remove price reduction when selling commodities (#4876)
  • Clear SetSpeedTarget when jumping (#4880)
  • Commodity name clean-up (#4875)
  • Prevent unwanted font face changes (#4882)
  • Fix increase / decrease buttons in SystemView being linked (#4868)
  • Fix UB related to allocation/free mismatch (#4867)
  • Prevent change of Pioneer's mouse pointer when hiding HUD (#4827)
  • Fix body grouping and setspeed target behaviour in flightUI (#4794)
  • Fix starfield not taking player's location into account (#4838)
  • Improve Mouse Capture Handling, fix UI deadlock (#4842)
  • Fix unused/free cabins shown in station footer being wrong (#4808)
  • Small additional improvements to orbit calculation (#4784)
  • Optimize route rendering (#5033)
  • Fix crash when switching to system map after hyperjumping (#5077)
  • Fix buy/sell of station stock updating inverted (#5072)
  • Fix ambient music looping (#5061)
  • Fix grammar in translation string for Earth/Sol radius (#5053)
  • Be consistent with use of nuclear vs radioactive (#5057)
  • Fix menu music issues (#5047)
  • Several map fixes and small tweaks (#5048)
  • Fall back to an empty resource if it hasn't been translated (#5011)
  • Fix Search & Rescue crash where IsPlayer() is falsely called by non-ship body (#4985)
  • Minor bugfixes for cargo mission (#4998)
  • Same fontsize for ship info view as the other screens (#5024)
  • Fix game crash when opening system view in hyperspace (#5120)
  • Fix game crash "attempt to index field ?" when docking (#5119)
  • Fix section of skybox being void of stars (#5116)
  • Fix ambient planet sound playing after leaving surface (#5115)
  • Fix exotic systems triggering crash when set at destination (#5114)
  • Fix game crash when clearing sold out adverts (#5097)
  • Fix sold out advert title wrong after loading saved game (#5092)
  • Fix Skipjack collision box for landing compatibility (#5087)
  • Fix many small UI issues (#5085)

Big thanks to developers, contributors, and players for keeping this going!

Source code

Complete source for the game, including assets, is always available from our GitHub repository.

See the compiling guide to find out how to get it up and running.


For January 2021. Full changelog.
  • New Features
    • New scoop mission (#4860)
    • Add alternative naming schemes (#4933)
  • Internal Changes
    • Happy new year (#5105)
    • Update buildscripts to use Ubuntu 20.04 (#5109)
    • Fix build with system lua (#5121)
  • Fixes
    • Fix surface sounds playing after leaving surface (#5115)
    • Fix segfault when setting destination to binary star (#5114)
    • Fix background display issues when changing star density slider (#5116)
    • Fix crash triggered by spacestation when removing advert (#5118)
    • Fix empty landing pad being occupied by a skipjack ship (#5086)
    • Fix game crash when selecting system map in hyperspace (#5120)