Star Citizen is being split in two. As of yesterday, if you want to purchase the complete package, you’ll need to buy Star Citizen, the half with the persistent multiplayer universe, and Squadron 42, the half with the single-player campaign. Each game will be $45 on its own, but if you buy one, the other title can be purchased later for $15. Anyone that pledged to Star Citizen for the basic license before the split will get both halves. New purchasers get to pay for each half separately. Roberts Space Industries noted that the two games are still part of the original vision.
The package split does not change the fact that Star Citizen and Squadron 42 are part of the same game universe, or the fact that the games are functionally connected. You will access Squadron 42 through the same game client. And your performance in Squadron 42 will still have an impact on your career in the persistent universe, whether you buy both segments together or if you choose to add one further down the line.
As for why it’s being done, the developer explained that an “a la carte” presentation was always part of the plan. The modules being purchased separately allows customers to access the persistent universe or the campaign for the original $45 price while development continues.