Star Citizen’s Fundraising Could End Up Hurting the Game

Star Citizen’s staggering budget means it will either be crowdfunding’s greatest success story or its greatest failure.

Star Citizen is going to reach the $50 million mark in donations, and it’s going to do it soon. Despite surpassing the amount of funds needed to develop the grandest of space simulators two years ago, the fans continue to fork over an average of $80,000 a day to its production. That’s $10 million since last January alone, a feat that will likely be repeated by the year’s end. Without a doubt, Star Citizen is the most successful crowdfunding project of all time. The trouble is, even with all that money, we still don’t know what the finished game will look like.

Crowdfunding was heralded as the start of a new age for indie developers, even though risks and hazards for such projects were as strong as ever.

It’s a hard question to answer, because crowdfunded games are still an incredibly unfamiliar market. When Chris Roberts first opened up contributions to Star Citizen in 2012, he was one of many developers using Kickstarter as an alternative to traditional games publishing. Crowdfunding was heralded as the start of a new age for indie developers, even though risks and hazards for such projects were as strong as ever. Since then, the majority of successfully backed gaming projects have pushed back their release dates. Some of the biggest Kickstarter-backed titles, like Wasteland 2 or Torment: Tides of Numenera, still aren’t in a state where they can be fully reviewed. And that’s not getting into projects that ran out of money, collapsed after the fact, or turned out to be thinly-veiled scams. And the behemoth that is Star Citizen towers over them all.

Star Citizen began as a passion project for Wing Commander creator Chris Roberts. The game promised a return to the long-defunct space-sim genre, complete with a huge universe, online and offline play, and no subscription fees. The demand was overwhelming, a shock to publishers who believed the genre was unpopular, and Roberts raised more than $2 million from Kickstarter in a month. Its original goal was $500,000.

As a Kickstarter success on par with Double Fine or inXile entertainment, Roberts’ team had over four times the amount needed to create its proposed game. Despite this, the crowdfunding campaign never quite ended. Instead, Paypal donations remained available through Star Citizen’s website, allowing access to the same player rewards, stretch goals, and pre-order packages as Kickstarter. And the donations just kept coming. Millions of dollars continued to pour into the project. Within months, Star Citizen had surpassed the amount for every single stretch goal.

There’s not necessarily anything wrong with Cloud Imperium Games having so much money to build from.

At this point, Star Citizen was already looking to be a massive game with enough features to satisfy die-hard fans. But instead of stopping there, Roberts and his team just started creating new stretch goals for backers to achieve. New features, new ship types, new systems, each bringing in a new influx of donations, followed by additional goals with every few million raised. Pledge rewards increased the number of ships available to players at launch, despite the fact that they wouldn’t be available for months or even years. It wasn’t until June 2014 that Roberts finally raised the possibility of closing Star Citizen’s stretch goals, putting the question to backers in a poll. Fifty-four percent of respondents asked for more stretch goals, which Roberts claimed he intends to honor.

There’s not necessarily anything wrong with Cloud Imperium Games having so much money to build from; AAA publishers throw these kind of figures at games all the time and produce smash hits. Regardless, it’s a little concerning that crowdfunding has become a game in and of itself at this point. Without a finished product, Star Citizen is little more than a microtransaction website where players buy content they won’t experience for months or even years. Eventually new rewards are announced, and players are encouraged to chip in more money to the cycle while there’s no full game to show for it.

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41 Comments on Star Citizen’s Fundraising Could End Up Hurting the Game

TUfao

On July 2, 2014 at 11:59 am

Best Article that describes Star Citizen…. EVER!

Tufao

On July 2, 2014 at 12:14 pm

Would not be possible that this money raised was just a marketing tool to try to show to people that the game is successful, people like it, so, other people could feel attracted to buy it?

After all, these guys are experienced. They know that all this collateral damage causes harm enough to destroy the image of a game and a company, mainly when the company is a starter.
And they continue to do that, even pushing more and more, putting a lot of focus to release ships only if super-polished, pretty and with a whole big PDF and sales campaign detailing and promoting each one, and each one, more expensive than many many full games out there.
And that contradicts the speech of CR who said in the past that did not want basically encourage people to pay real money. It’s ok to delay the game in 2 years, but keeping selling ships exclusively by money, and not allowing players to earn them in game with gameplay, as long as the full game not released, is ok too?
It sounds that they are going to delay more and more the game, since they do not sell, for real, too much new copies of the game, and make tons and tons of the money only selling additional ships, ship variants for the same addicted group of backers.

So… in my view there are two options. They push and push more, because they do not have the money announced and it is used just for marketing purposes, or they are simply the most greedy than any of the worst and greedy publishers that exist in the game industry, curiously usually bashed as Devils by the CIG team and mainly its fans.
Both are bad things, but I do not see any thing good coming from CIG, except selling illusions and making disguises, changing labels to make their business model different from other evil greedy publishers out there, that I never saw to be evil at this level, by the way.

Illutian

On July 2, 2014 at 1:31 pm

I wonder if the writer has even tried the Hanger or Arena Commander extension [to Hanger].

SmokeAndMirrors

On July 2, 2014 at 1:45 pm

Look at the delay of the Arena Commander. That should be a warning flag that they don’t have their crap together AND Chris Roberts is talking bigger than they can actually deliver. They are behind. Everything will get delayed. I have met with others that have worked on games like Freelancer and other Chris Roberts projects. They were amazed that the games ever got finished. It is now like it was then….Smoke and Mirrors. Sadly they have a ton of talent at their disposal. That’s a ton of nice people with families that will pay the consequences should things go south. CR is making a ton of money off of this. Taking his wife Sandy…(yes the person who warned the whole company to not announce that she’s his wife) to Bora Bora. Getting a multi-million dollar home in California. Making his wife head of marketing, who then makes everyone else do her work for her. Letting her cancel Wingmans Hangar because she has to be the star. Giving her a fat raise so they can take home even more of the profits. Hmmm…I don’t think the Roberts camp will be hurting either way. CR is yet another evil in this industry. Unfortunately he’s duped a lot of people out of their hard earned money. Sure, there’s playable parts to his claims. However, that doesn’t guarantee anything. I hope the game actually gets completed. I don’t want to see an outcome that could hurt the crowd funding sector.

nikbott

On July 2, 2014 at 1:53 pm

While I think the criticism is valid, fundamentally there is so much interest and so many backers (after a certain point it’s preaching to the choir) who are clamoring for Star Citizen and the games like it. I watched for nearly 2yrs before I finally took the plunge. I wish I would have backed earlier. I feel like I’m behind on the lore and what not. If you did your research, I apologize, but from the article I got no sense about the backstory that’s being developed and the sheer loads of content that CIG is putting forth to inform its backers of the work that’s being done. It seemed like a mere abstraction of the thought that too much money for a project where stretch goals start to impede production. Have you looked at the next stretch goal? $48M is a commercial for the ship that won the reality show (great PR and Marketing btw, I’ve learned so much about the work that’s going into the game). I’m a video editor and from seeing what they’ve done previously I don’t think that’s gonna take too long to do.

Again, I think that the criticism is fair, but the lack of thorough description made me just realize that this was a opinion piece. Well-written, but opinon, not journalism.

Tubz

On July 2, 2014 at 2:31 pm

FYI The website donations started before the kickstarter….

I agree that SC has a massive responsibility to the kickstarter community to get things right. But they way your article is written is as if they have provided the community with nothing for the money they get.

The amount of info the fans get about development is unheard of. We get monthly, weekly and daily reports on what each dev team is doing in one form or another. We can fly the starter ships in single player arenas and multiplayer ones.

They release a magazine every month that shows in great detail the step by step method they go through to create ships, environments and other assets. Chris sits down every Monday and answers fan questions in detail. We have dev threads that we can ask each dev teams questions on their work and we receive detailed info in the answers.

The list goes on…..My point is that CIG is a very transparent company. I understand loads more about game development, graphics, game engines etc just from being a part of it and we have an amazing community with tens of thousands of guilds already helping each other running competitions, raising money for charity, kickstarting other projects together.

oninoshiko

On July 2, 2014 at 2:48 pm

They’ve actually only doubled the money required to make the game. It was ALWAYs 21-22M, he was just planning on getting the rest from investors. the amount they have brought in just means they don’t need the investors anymore.

As a backer, I’m content with what I’ve gotten as consistent with what I would expect from an alpha. The new goals are just getting little “fun-things,” “flare” if you will. I think as multiplayer continues to roll out, and planet-side after that, I think it will continue to meet my alpha expectations. As they continue to fix bugs and refine the game until release, it should lead them to having one of the most stable and breathtaking releases in recent memory.

Chris

On July 2, 2014 at 3:00 pm

Normally, id agree with this article. However, RSI has been incredibly transparent during the entire crowd-funding experience. Monthly, Weekly, and Daily reports. The Hanger/DF module which TBH are fun in and of themselves. Constant site updates, and monthly newsletter thing, and more regular updates make me confident. This is the only crowd-funding game ive supported, and its based on CR and the transparency.

Michael

On July 2, 2014 at 3:18 pm

So the goal was $500,000?

So why didn’t they just release what they had that was worth the work of that goal and everything else after that would have been an expansion. People could be playing this now. This is why I didn’t put money in this game. All they are doing is milking it until they reach a goal in which they see a decline in pledges. Imagine the people who pledged and probably die before this game will ever be released.

$50 million and nothing to show for it.

Dice

On July 2, 2014 at 4:07 pm

Too bad the author missed the fact that all stretch goals constitute what was planned for original launch, as opposed to the false idea that they are in fact new features. CIG has been very clear on what features were planned for original launch and we just unlocked them with funding, and those that are designed to be post release development.

Ultimately the major items have all been community choice. The re addition of stretch goals at all was at the request of the community.

This article feels more like a spin of misinformation to garner attention. ~shrug~ That, or it’s just simply not well enough researched.

Tufao

On July 2, 2014 at 4:46 pm

I am impressed that in all articles that I read that does not talk that CIG is perfect and that everything is ok, big delays are ok and Pay Wall is ok, and eternal funding for something already fully funded is ok, the SC fanboys come and start to say “how misinformed and bad researcher” the writer is.
It happened already at least here and in PC Gamers articles that I read.
It seems that everyone who just report Star Citizen instead making marketing for Star Citizen is always misinformed and bad researcher.

Oh God! Fanboy wisdom!

I just feel bad for the CIG employees that will be left behind. People acts like employees always have choice and jobs available for everyone. They forgot that they do what they do, they lie what they lie, because they do not have other current alternative… well… many of those who had, are actually leaving from CIG, but they simply and obviously, do not share that with their backer, despite all the claims of “transparency”.

Tufao

On July 2, 2014 at 4:52 pm

And look… The Fanboy Army is already aware of this article Marshall…

https://forums.robertsspaceindustries.com/discussion/155822/new-gamefront-opinion-article

Watch yourself!

That’s another thing that they do… They usually pursuit people around the internet trying to destroy the image of the person due “the wisdom of more than 1 people saying the same thing”. They usually create even some guides there, to say to backers how to react to articles that share concerns about Star Citizen future and the CIG monetization practices. It is really disgusting if you ask me, what these crazy people do.

Run for your lives!

rickshaw

On July 2, 2014 at 5:03 pm

Star Citizen is now being funded by following a trend, that’s it.
I was one of the early backer & i myself can’t really see this being as great as they say it will. Having played the test 1 phase I’m kind of not there at all with what has been said & done so far.Its all twizzled. I think of course the “hanger is cool, the pit entrance is cool, but the overall feel of it is not. I can see this hitting its face if it doesn’t comply to what it said it could do and wouldn’t do. which is really a very big ask.The bigger this gets the more damage it has to do to itself.
I suppose I could around saying, if give me money I can do this and that, most of time it won’t work out to what you really wanted, but, hey you paid me, so therefore I win.
Just like all crowd funded games Its just not worth the hassle of it all, I’d rather pay for a game that’s not been begged for and finished by hard graft. than go through such heart ache and brain s that crowd funded projects do to you..I just see them all lining up like corpses on shelves only they are all in hard drives or un installed doing nothing but wasting money.

Problem with today:
Its just so easy to hit a button and not see the invisible cash you worked for, go & disappear into someone else’s data ridden pocket of joy..

Tufao

On July 2, 2014 at 5:47 pm

“The purpose of the higher stretch goals is to ensure that the game-as-described is finished in the two year time period,”
This was a nice finding Marshal.

I have one more for you:

Chris Roberts said (http://www.pcauthority.com.au/Feature/329349,star-citizen-interview-8211-chris-roberts-on-why-pay-to-win-8220sucks8221.aspx/4).):

“Uh, I’m not necessarily against free-to-play as long as it’s done well. What I don’t like is sort of the zinger-style gameplay that hampers your experience to force you to basically encourage you to pay money. So I think that sucks. So I don’t want that.”

See? The guy basically says that is totally against to basically encourage people to pay real money, he think that is sucks and told that did not want that.

Now, he is going to delay his game in 2 years. If you pay attention to what was described in the SC original description, or watched earlier interviews, by this point, people would start to play the Beta, “a huge open galaxy to adventure yourself”, and by consequence, also would start to earn in-game credits to exchange by SHIPS (their REAL thing, which lead them to make this money, since they sell exponentially more additional ships/variants/limited ships, than copies of the game itself).

To make less painfull he decided to release instead an Alpha and a Beta, the whole game in modules, where each module will naturally pass from an alpha to a beta and then to a “release” status, but basically the game itself is going to be released in modules, where the first release is the Hangar, the second is Arena Commander v0.8 attached to the Hangar and so on… growing until achieve the level of what was promised originally…

You do not need not even a developer expert to know how difficult is to create a ship in the level of the detail that they are doing, and making it work in the game, but you definitely would know too, how easy would make to the CIG team to provide a simple logic system to make people earn “temporary credits” that only would work for the Arena Commander module for example, so they could earn these credits and exchange by ships.

And they actually are going to do that in some point at this year. But look what they did. They shared their store in a Pledge Store and a Items store, adn only what is in the Item store can be earned by gameplay, or could be exchanged by credits earned by gameplay instead real money. And what a surprise… Ships are not there. Ships will continue to be exclusive acquired by REAL money. They claim that will implement some kind of “testing badge” that allows you to make a test drive of 24 hours with a ship that you did not pay for… but that will have a ticket price on that too, for real money… and even that they released some way to you earn this testing badge by gameplay, it onlyi allows you to play for 24 hours… which is… by definition… all that…

BASICALLY ENCOURAGING YOU TO PAY MONEY!
Something that Chris Roberts told that would not want that, and said that it sucks, when comparing his game, his idea with the ideas of microtransactions of games sold by his “enemy” EA and others that they claim to be “evil publishers, venture capitalistas that only cares with money”… And look… he does not like, he does not want, he think that it sucks, but is going to keep that anyway, for at least 1 year, or 2 years more, until this “release” milestone that nobody has any idea what it is, when it comes, and what features will have and what not, giving them the flexibility, to claim in whatever moment what the “release is”.

Basically, while too much people do not complain, they will follow this terrible and evil apporoach of forcing/encouraging people to pay real money. And even if you or others could “approve” this strategy, what is the most ridiculous is the CR’s speech, saying something totally different from what he does, which is actually, something very common in this project. Best contradiction ever and that should put a big RED FLAG on this project and the reliability of Chris Roberts and their real intentions.

And for the delay matter… Have you noticed that he never touched in any interview or any point the subject of “it could delay”? With all his experience, suffering big delays in the past in at least 2 or 3 projects, he did not know or did not care to mention that in the Star Citizen description? Instead, he claimed that the “higher stretch goal would make sure that he released in the 2 time year period”… This is a serious and clear deceptive marketing to make people giving him money in that point of the campaign.

And he did that even recently, playing on people about the release of the AC module… next week, next day, couple of months, and so on… basically willing that people stayed tunned in his website, an obvious marketing attitude to make people thirsty enough to pay tons on money as soon as “seen” something… that is obviously a double-edge sword… but who cares… their target is on people that is easily manipulated and believe on fairy tales…. and surprisingly there are a couple of thousands of people in our world which believes, or at least, the 400 or 500 people who give their opinions in the CIG forums makes appear that those people approve their attitudes and really believe that “every single dime goes to the development”
and that whena company achieves an additional million dollars by the hands of a group of clients, all that the clients deserve is a plant, or a towel.

CIG is worst than any publisher ever. They built a pay wall with the ships behind, and are not to give up of that and probably will delay their release in purpose. They probably were expecting more people to come with the release of “something visually stunning”… but the thing is that not a relevant number of people came, and I don’t doubt that they will put even more focus to explore what they have, pushing even more ship sales, promotions, so these same group of people, buy more and more of these in-game itens, all disguised as funding (which does not make any sense obviously, since they have at least twice the money needed), and people lying to themselves, buying all them to support the development, when they actually are just supporting their own addiction, caused by years of waiting for something and looking to the project in a daily basis… it works like cocaine… and CR and the former EA member that is vice-president of CIG and rarely appears for obvious reasons to keep the feeling of “fairy tale” and “hero of the industry”… knows that.

Thylbanus

On July 2, 2014 at 6:01 pm

Odd, I went to the link and it said that Beta would drop in Nov of 2014, not the game.

Dave

On July 2, 2014 at 9:00 pm

“Roberts raised more than $2 million from Kickstarter in a month. Its original goal was $500,000.

As a Kickstarter success on par with Double Fine or inXile entertainment, Roberts’ team had over four times the amount needed to create its proposed game. Despite this, the crowdfunding campaign never quite ended.”

This guy really misunderstands the funding…

Star Citizen has revised it’s funding plans twice… first pass, $500K to prove their is interest. They NEVER intended to make this game on $500K alone. Never. That was seed money to prove to a publisher… the next goal was like $12 I think… No publisher, just some investors… after that was passed, not even investors were needed and it went 100% crowdfunded.

$2 million was NEVER 4 times what they needed to make the game. It was never claimed to be. The author really misunderstands how this game has been funded and what that funding has been for.

I won’t even start on the author’s misunderstanding of stretch goals….

He raises some good points here and there, but Marshall is pretty misinformed to be writing this.

D

On July 2, 2014 at 9:16 pm

Yet another article by Gamefront about SC with little research done, I thought that was IGNs style.

“If Roberts had focused on “one piece at a time” instead of juggling many plates, perhaps the core game might have been farther along without stretch goals holding it back.” – With multiple studios around the world, they have teams working on various parts of the game at the same time, a lot more is getting done then just AC and the Hanger, if they had focused on just one they would be far far behind where they now.

“Each stretch goal places further demands on development resources and work hours” – and I’m sure you got called out on this last time, It’s been many millions since this was the case, for a long time now stretch goals have simply been a small item gift that would be in game with or without the money.

John

On July 2, 2014 at 9:35 pm

Worst article I’ve ever read.

Marshall, your article is completely biased and you leave out critical things that completely destroy your thesis that Star Citizen’s stretch goals will hurt the game.

First off, adding a system or two and a ship or two will not hurt the game at all. It’s not a feature of the game, it’s just an extra art asset. I think they can afford to add one new ship for getting a million dollars, don’t you? Kickstarter projects ask for $500,000 to complete an entire game, I highly doubt adding one new ship (even one as detailed as ones in Star Citizen) will kill the game. Same goes for a system (which is just a background of a planet with maybe a landing location or two).

Stretch goals haven’t been about adding new features to the game since the game hit 29 million in funding. Literally every stretch goal past 29 million was adding a single ship, or a system, and now the stretch goals are giving players a small item that they start out with when the full game is released. You really think giving players an “engine tuning kit” which is probably an item that was going to be in the game anyways, in return for a ing million dollars, is feature creep and will kill the game? Please, how retarded can you get?

Chris Roberts stated a ship like the Constellation cost $150000 to make. All the stretch goal ships that were added were around the size of the Constellation or smaller. This means the rest of the money goes into hiring more developers in all aspects of the game. For the current stretch goals like the “engine tuning kit”, I highly doubt the kit will cost much, if anything at all. Chris Roberts purposely chose such lackluster stretch goals as Star Citizen gained more money because he knew his hands were full with features that were already promised.

It’s an extremely simple concept. I’m sorry you people are too dumb to understand it.

Hyper1

On July 2, 2014 at 10:13 pm

Sigh another uninformed article about star citizen, why do people not bother about reading before they write, I mean isn’t a big part of journalism to know what you are talking about.

firstly, they only have just over 2 times the cash needed to create the game, at 23 million it was enough for them to create the game without any publisher input.

the kickstarter FAQ is outdated, try reading the website.

majority of stretch goals are more around giving backers rewards and revealing new information about what they are working on rather than the traditional kickstarter goals of adding content.

FGP123

On July 3, 2014 at 1:15 am

The writer of this article need to do more research, some of the dates and facts about content, release dates etc are inaccurate or wholly misleading.

The game producers have always been extreamly open, there are so many sources of information, monthly reports from all the development teams, screen shots, videos, a whole ‘Show’ dedicate to giving folk a look behind the scenes.

To elude that there is ‘nothing’ for it is just misinformation, at this stage of development of any game the public would not even have access to anything right now, this would all be close Alpha testing, but in here they are playing a dogfighting test bed of the game right now.

Most of the negative views from ‘players’ often come from the usual forum cry baby tantrums, because the game is not developed to a time schedule of an individual they take time out to rant like it is the biggest scam going. The awful, rude and obnoxious demanding posts are often the ones that tend to get cherry picked for review writers.

As for the time schedule THE WHOLE POINT of this project was to give the dev team TIME to develop it and NOT rush it out the door like every other publisher back game for pure profit, so to comment that release schedules are pushed back is both meaningless and irrelevant in this project.

To show how transparent the developer is, Chris Roberts wanted to push back the dogfighting part of the game to add better net code that what came with CryEngine and also add PBR which HAS made the game even better looking. HE actually ASKED THE COMMUNITY if this would be OK and the overwhelming responses was YES. There is no RED FLAG warning as some incorrectly think, that’s just blind spam hating.

Obviously as always there are a handful of people who had a tantrum, but these are the same people that most likely wont be playing the game after 6 months because of their patients and attention span.

Most likely this will be perceived as a ‘fanboy’ post. But if trying to expose a few facts into what is a partially misleading article makes me a fanboy then colour me ‘Rabid Fanboy’.

The writer of this article was much more responsible than allot of the comments i have seen which range from ‘Trash’ to blatant ‘Click bating’. And he or she does raise some intresting points, but it is garnished with a healthy dose of inaccuracy or irrelevancy.

I’m not a lover of online journalism in this field as it is more about ‘Click baiting’ and ‘conjecture’ than facts. We can all muse about how the world will end in a ball of possible fire any day from an Asteroid, the reality is it has never happened.
The reason the ‘fanboys’ come out in force is because they see misleading and inaccurate information. One would think a professional journalist would want some informed feedback.

Those that question the morals of this project, because it has been so successful and claim to have the players interest at heart is amusing, because this is a project that EVERYONE (baring a few idiots that seem to think they were backing a full game that would be done in 12 months) that backed understood what ‘Pledging’ means and the risks involved, we don’t need an on-line journalist to tell us that.

the majority, as shown in many polls on the forums BACK the idea of delays to get the game right, BACK the amount of feedback we get. No one is being fooled, it’s as open as it would possibly be.

ironically it’s the ‘scaremongering’ that will have people running for the hills and lead to projects like this having problem more than any shady dev.

IF this works, which so far it is on a grand scale, despite the musings of those that clearly have not spend time in the dev of the game. Then this will be the holly grail of gaming. Not because it will be the best game ever, or Chris Roberts is some kind of gaming Demi God, but because it sends out a big clear signal to indi developers that you can make a AAA game without publishers that will push your product out the door, half finished and missing some possible awesome content to meet some deadline so they can get their hands on all the glorious profit.

And who knows maybe it will send a big message to publishers to start looking at their investment with a bit more respect, allow the devs to polish and complete it to the best it can and star releasing, full, bug free ‘ish content that’s both original and pushes the boundary of game-play, not just shiny graphics.

Like or Loath the game, but it’s success is something EVERY gamer should be rooting for, because it will actually stear game development further into the relm of passionate designers and gamers and less towards the rinse and repeat publishers. And that is good for everyone who cares about gaming.

Do people get scammed on projects like these? sure they do. My friend got scammed from a guy he purchased a car from, that does not mean all people selling their car are to be mistrusted. We all just have to be Adult about it and take responsibility for our actions.

Instead of claiming the sky may possibly fall in, it would be nice to have someone do a review that actually spends some time within the game and community and writes an article based on facts understanding what the project is about and the promise, and not that some day a big scary Asteroid is going to hit the earth and turn us all to dust. Because we know that’s possible, does not mean i need to run for the hills just yet.

Sep

On July 3, 2014 at 2:49 am

2 main complaints in the article: could be bloated and could be delayed.

Those who fund it don’t mind the learning curve. In fact, the whole point is to try and create a skill based game with heaps of features that will take years to explore and understand.

Those who fund it do so because we do not mind the delays. In fact, the whole point of it is that we don’t want to force the game to be released early. If your not interested and are cynical about the whole thing, don;t pledge and just buy when the game comes out. Those of us who pledged knew exactly what we were getting into and are fine with it.

Ciao

sep1

On July 3, 2014 at 2:53 am

And another further point, I believe I already have my pledge’s worth of content, simply through the amount of lore and development info and concept art they have put out. It’s gobsmacking how much interesting stuff there is. It’s already got me as interested as Star Wars and Star Trek did when I first saw the shows. That’s how rich and interesting the world they have built so far is.

Alex M

On July 3, 2014 at 3:43 am

What a fascinating and superbly written article. Thank you, I really enjoyed reading that and I think you’ve hit the nail exactly on the head with how you’ve summarised this situation.

Farden

On July 3, 2014 at 5:07 am

I am an early back of Star Citizen (Citizen ID just over 40k) but I started following it quite a long time before I backed it as I was also being cautious, I didnt want to throw my money and vaporware but having been a part of this campaign of theres for nearly 2 years now, I can honestly say I don’t care how long it takes them to make it, and I know a signficant majority of the community, certainly within my own SC Corporation dont care either. We’ve backed our money on them making a good game, without the likes of EA stepping in and ruining it.
Concerns about bloat are valid and Roberts has brought this up on several occasions. I do wonder if the OP has followed SC that closely via all the community content, or if he is just making presumptions based on whats easily google-able.
What they are creating is a rich and complicated universe, they have some of the best developers going and Roberts is proven game designer.
Also, the Modular release is also there to mitigate problems such as a bugs and bad net code, people are already able to play against each other in the Dog Fighting module (Arena Commander) and whilst it was delayed, it was delayed for a reason and the community, whilst some elements would have been frustrated, have largely been accepting of this.
In short, if you ask me, they can take as long as they damn well please.

Tufao

On July 3, 2014 at 6:55 am

Which is more fun when reading the fanboy comments about Star Citizen, doing exactly as I predicted yesterday (You know nothing, you are misinformed, you are wrong… and a few offenses… in other words… expected reaction), is that their have a really impressive knowledge about how ALL the people think.

You always can see they saying… “nobody cares”, “everyone is supporting”, “the majority voted”… and so on. And they even dare to call the writer of this article dumb, because he can’t see that.

Well… I believe that the Chris Roberts brainwash machine really works to lobotomize the minds of some people. For example, all this talking about “we are ok with delays” is the consequence of a brainwash campaign that started exactly after the end of the original crowdfunding campaign, when the devs, and forum threads started to pop-up in dozen, saying all the time “It’s done when it’s done” and other mottos like that. Before the game funded, it was never told. Exactly the contrary. CR always went to interviews, FAQ’s, questions and answers sectiosn around the internet, always saying that he was capable to deliver the game in 2 years, that the higher stretch goals would make sure him to deliver in the 2 time year period, and, as you can see in the Kickstarter description of the game, nothing is told about delays, except that IF they did not achieve the money, THEN it could delay… but what happened was exactly the contrary… they exceeded the money asked for, regardless having or not to use investors, that was the promise made and clear…. until a few weeks after the end of the original campaign… Then the brainwash started through the CIG Forums and the CIG weekly shows, with they creating interviews and talkings to “form the opinion” that delays were ok and a great thing, instead simply, lack of responsibility, bad management, imcompetence, or even that delays should be expected, all the earlier messages were simply bait, to get money from more people that they would get if they told the true about the schedule, which means… basically, false advertising, deceptive marketing, that by the way, is against the US Law that rules the matter.

They tried to focus in a few mistakes of the author, to try to dismiss everything, when the mistakes is not exactly BIG mistakes. Yes, they did not get 4 times the money asked… they got 3. Kickstarter campaign started a week after the campaign made by CR through his own blog site. He asked less on KS, in my view, because on KS he did not have the power to show whatever number that he wanted, by the way, and even this way, to achieve the KS mark was much more difficult than achieve the mark in his own website. Curious, hã? He actually asked for 2 million and won 6 million… and with 6… that would make sure that the “full vision of CR”, according with Chris Roberts, was implemented and delivered in the 2 year time period. That’s what everyone knows in that point of the project….

Then… the things started to change. Some excuses appear to justify the need to gather more money. And these excuses continue again and again…. More like “Ok guys, we have 10 million, what can we say to achieve 11?”… something like that. I watched this from the beginning, but I was able to survive of this intense and strong brainwash machine… and remained looking to this project under a neutral view, looking to the FACTS, instead the facts that they sell through their marketing, that is just that.. .marketing, not really facts… still, all those fanboys assume that as facts, no matter how many times later CR contradicts such earlier “facts” the he says in his marketing.

And what all this fanboys commenting here and everywhere in all their wisdom of people who knows everything and understand everything (which basically means, for real, like those people hypnotized in some brainwash machine that look like zombies and say to the main hero of the movie: “calm down, enter in this machine, you will understand”… I am pretty sure that I watched a lot of Star Trek episodes with this same scenario, ehehhehee), they fail to see that ALL people, ALL the community, the MAJORITY which answered in the CIG forums or in the CIG polls, are actually (and you would lost not more than an hour to double check that), the same group of users that is not more than 400, 500 people, including that users that clearly have duplicate accounts to try to “win” forum fights showing the opinion of a majority… They even pledged in many of these different accounts, but despite pledges, you do not need to even have pledged to give opinion or to vote in all CIG polls, which open the space to all these fanboys to create many and many fake accounts just to vote in such polls…

How could be 300, 400 people and usually less, representing a community that would be, according with numbers shared, next to 500k? Or even 200k or 150k, if you investigate and see that such number in front of the SC webpage is not really the number of backers but the number of accounts created in their website. Majority? Really?

And even their polls… still voted so many times as possible by the same people, during days, still, they did not achieve more than 20.000 votes. Majority?

That’s curious right? 50% of 20.000 fake votes, decided to continue with the Stretch Goals going on… And regardless how easy is to prove that you can vote with accounts with no pledge, CIG comes and say that will honor that choice, and continue to put a business decision in the hands of a “community” which uses a fake process of voting… Don’t you think that it is strange? What are these CIG people? Some retards? I thought that they were actually 20 years experieenced developers/designers, with some of them, even with experience working for Eletronic Arts and Microsoft… Well… Obvious is obvious.
They just put that to people with superficial thought, or others making marketing for their money machine, to have something to say around the internet to justify the insane money machine that they are perpetuating… kind of trying to give the responsibility to the community, or even having the excuse that “community made the choice” which is indeed ridiculous, since community would make the choice only if they shown a huge majority of community voting, not just less than 1% of the community voting and they deciding to honor the choice of 0.5%. This is indeed, ridiculous, and shows how dumb is for real, not the writer, nor the people with open eyes (usually classified by these lobotomized zombies fanboys as haters), but the fanboys are seriously dumb… after all.. they continue to praise a team who delays, who is not transparent at all and only shares marketing fluff to lobotomize people, instead actual information about behind the scenes, which play the role of celebrities instead game developers and put the customer in a position of peasant/fan instead a customer.

But that’s not too much to worry about. All this people claiming about “success” are unable to see how FAIL is Star Citzien at this poitn. Their Arena Commander release, was called around all the corners of Earth by these zombies, as something that would bring millions of people to make pledge… because as soon as people have something to see… promotional videos and a game to play… everyone would see how alien and magician and perfect CR is … and look what happened… they released the AC… sales did not raise, at least from what they revealed throught their website graphics, and they had to add a ship promotion in the same week to make the numbers raise, since they always fail to sell a relevant number of new copies, but always are successfull to sell ships to the same group of addicted lobotomized brainwashed zombies fanboys. And if they really would not like to be “offended” like that, they really should start to see what is in the front of their noses and act differently, and not so predictable as always happens, for any SC article in the internet.
:D
Oh! And let’s just do not forget… Everyone is happy in the community… if you see the CIG Forums… but you also will notice, if spending some time… moderators deleting threads, banning people, etc… because you should know that “negative” feedback is not allowed there, or if it is allowed, only in a very limited manner that already put you in the moderators watch list… with threats of the Community Manager, that says: “I will look through your history of comments to see if I ban you or not”.

Star Citizen is a serious scam. Something will be delivered, one day… But I highly doubt that will be something next of the promises made, or even achieving the level of “changing the world”, or “sending a message to the publisher”… The only message that they are sending, is to the account manager of the Bank where CR is client… making him to open more investiments to CR… maybe he is going to make another movie at the end of this project… I don’t doubt that he will have the funding… but obviously, he will have to fight against his wife Sandi, since she probably prefer to make some trips or to upgrade their big California house.

Project pathetic targeted to pathetic people… I pledged because I did not know CR. I just play his games in the past… Now that I know him better, by all his attitudes, I am seriously ashamed… but not ashamed enough to do not spread some trues about it here, because I really really hate deceivers… so call me hater then… you are right… I HATE DECEIVERS!

Applecrow

On July 3, 2014 at 9:21 am

I see JCRG99 has already found this article.

Manzes

On July 3, 2014 at 9:25 am

“It wasn’t until June 2014 that Roberts finally raised the possibility of closing Star Citizen’s stretch goals, putting the question to backers in a poll. Fifty-four percent of respondents asked for more stretch goals, which Roberts claimed he intends to honor.”

And he got 20.000 votes in a poll where duplicate accounts created by fanboys to influence decisions or win “forum fights” was able to vote.
Still, it was just half that voted to continue… 10.000… with the fake accounts and considering that you do not find EVER more than 300-400-500 (just hundreds) of people in their Forums, influencing the whole development… well… pretty much, or CR is crazy, or he pretend to poll the community and just ask things that he is able to know how the answer will be, or can easily manipulate that.

And even if it was an honest and correct poll, the numbers are totally irrelevant to the number of backers that they claim to be, making it like a joke… since you will see, if figuring out that many votes were done by duplicate accounts that 1% of the backers voted and 0.5% decided the future of the company in keeping or not, something that clearly is a dangerous thing, a double-edge sword that is more making harm at this point, by putting a big “FINANCIAL PIRAMID SCAM” label, something similar obviously, in the front of the CIG business and his marketing approach.

People claim that SC is not a scam… but it seems that his whole marketing team is using all the strategies that a scammer would use to make money… and is difficult to trust, when you see and got them lying in your face, with such ridiculous try to manipulate opinions and the media.

manzes

On July 3, 2014 at 9:31 am

“Odd, I went to the link and it said that Beta would drop in Nov of 2014, not the game.”

Said where? In your dreams?

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/cig/star-citizen

Funded! This project was successfully funded on November 19, 2012.

12 months in, we will allow the early backers to play the multiplayer space combat Alpha, and then 20-22 months in they will get to play the Star Citizen Beta, adventuring around the huge open galaxy, well before the general public.
The purpose of the higher stretch goals is to ensure that the game-as-described is finished in the two year time period.

Now, please… do the math… ok?

Tufao

On July 3, 2014 at 9:54 am

People trying to bash this great and correct article in the CIG Forums…
an user called Frankbean says in the thread:

“Yeah, because with nearly half a million backers, most of them were ing, right? Or was it just the few hundred, or at best the few thousand in the vocal minority? Even if 45,000 individuals were in a tissy over the AC launch, that’s still barely 10% of the backers.”

See? These brainwashed zombies really believe that they are “thousands” there in the CIG Forums, giving opinions and voting on polls.
They can’t see what is in the front of their noses… that all people that has been influencing this development through the CIG Forums are not more than a couple of hundreds, and when it is the matter of polls, as they spend the whole day in their forums, they do not have any problem to vote again and again, with their thousands accounts… obviously… they want to influence as much as they can, after all, these people put thousands and thousands of dollars, apparently, on this project…
Still, they talk about ‘the whole community’… ‘millions… thousands’…
Seriously… I never imagined that people sold their souls so easy for marketing… even that the reality is there, in the front of their noses, but they are unable to see, because the “marketing told something different”.
And the guy ever dare to put % to justify his comment, without noticing that not even 1% of this “community”, ignoring even the duplicated accounts that voted too, chosen to “keep the SG thing going on”.
Holy crap! That’s why is so easy to say any buls and win an election for president of United States or whatever country in our world. You just need to have the right face to show in the camera to sell your bs… and people will fall ignoring even the reality of the things… falling into fairy tales as they were child of 5 years old.
Pathetic.

CIG only “accepts” what they say (they actually wanted everyone saying yes, obviously, obviously knowing that is polling the “yes man” people, not even 1% of the whole community), because they basically are those that are paying more money for them… tons of money… thousands of dollars, while the great majority for real, just watch the crazy things that they do and is not even paying any cent anymore, and each day, becomes more and more uncomfortable to say out there “I am a Star Citizen backer” which is already associated these days, with “retards and Yes Man” group.

CIG knows and knows even more today, that his game is not attractive in the market, and their mistakes are too big to do something to change the scenario. They sucked. They made many marketing mistakes that can’t go back and are just trying to make damage control… and will try to do that until the end of their days. And for a perspective of money, the best that they can do, is to praise this hundreds of people, which call themselves “THE WHOLE COMMUNITY” which continue to give them thousands and thousands more dollars (if you believe that their numbers are for real)… They are the only source of money, and they know that the competition that they thought that would not have, is coming, and is coming strong… (already came and is way ahead in critics and media… in the case of Elite: Dangerous and EvE Valkyrie) and already won a lot of space, stealing a lot of the possibilities of any “success” of Star Citizen.

They made mistakes, but they are unable to save their image at this point… so, that’s why they are going to continue to push for ship sales, instead pushing to game sale… because when the times come to push the “game sales” they are smart enough to know that they got all the public that they could, and the others that will come will come in the same level of others that will leave… obviously disappointed for many reasons. It’s easy to see more people leaving, going to competition, than bothering to stay in the Star Citizen crap. Even modders will help to make the PU for one more niche inside a niche.

That’s why they keep this non-sense going. It’s too late to change their minds… and Star Citizen by consequence, is going to be game for a niche, inside a niche, inside a niche, inside a niche, while other games that are coming are really showing more potential to survive in the long term… obviously… because they did the right thing… targeting the right public and not trying to please everyone, selling a dream to everyone, to just later, as soon as they got the money, start to say “it’s done when it’s done” and “we cannot please everyone” and other pre-made marketing brainwash phrases that they have been trying to use to save their asses of an obvious fail that is coming.

Just want more in the CR’s list… but this one… probably is the one that he is going to make more profit… no doubt.

Comet

On July 3, 2014 at 5:15 pm

I was THERE from the start. I pledged for Star Citizen back when it was announced. As I invested in this game I have kept a close eye on it’s development and what I’m about to write is not a fanboy piece or invention but facts. Simple facts.
They made a promise to deliver a certain type of game.
The core of their promise is here : https://s3.amazonaws.com/ksr/assets/000/270/245/dd2fae749a06347225b5d2085daa1217_large.png?1353347631
http://scwiki.org/index.php?title=Development:Stretch_Goals – a bit more detailed

The problem with this article is that it focus on the money instead on if they are actually doing what they promised. People like me that have pledged for this project are way more worried with the results, than with the money they have raised.
So the question is, are they following on their promise?
Me and the majority of people thing they are. So much so that more and more people are joining.
So why do I and others believe in them? Because of the FACTS.
The facts are this. They promised they would keep us updated. They have done more than that. They are quite literally showing us their weekly progress. There are new articles and progress updates EVERY DAY.
They promised the best space sim visuals and a “realism” never experienced in other space sims.
Unlike games like Watchdogs, the DFM visuals look as good as their pitch video from 2012.
As for the realism part, I’ve played pretty much every space sim from the 80′s and beyond and I’ve never seen a space sim that reacted to a lost wing on a space ship. Damage states usually went good condition, bad condition but your ship functions more or less the same and finally “dead condition”.
So realism checked. They promised a player driven universe and now we have player runned organizations using the game built in system. They promise planet side interaction and behold :
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omW08x__vvw#t=1663

No one knows if the game will be great or not. The only thing we can evaluate is what they’re doing.
So I leave you all a question.
Are they building the game they have promised or not?

Comet

On July 3, 2014 at 5:37 pm

Tufao

I really don’t know what your problem is with this game.
The only thing I can tell you is this. People are free to do whatever they want with their money.
You mention pay walls but for me a pay wall is what I have in my consoles that I need to pay a subscription to play online games. That’s a pay wall.
Anyone in here is free to wait for the final game, buy it at store and play it for free online or alone.
Anyone is also free to pledge as low as $30 and get access to the release version of both Squadron 42 and Star Citizen.
If as you say people are paying hundreds to buy ships, then I’ll have to say that RSI artists are doing a remarkable job if ship looks alone are enough to make people waste hundreds of dollars.

Obviously people like to receive something in return for the amount of money they are pledging but do you really believe anyone really thinks a constellation is worth $225?
People that are wasting that money are doing it because they want to support the project.
People that are wasting that money are fully aware that no game is worth that money.

PurgatorialFlame

On July 3, 2014 at 6:00 pm

I’m enjoying Arena Commander mode they’ve released.

My brothers are perfectly fine waiting for it’s release and none intend to buy more content.
All that money is coming in from more players discovering the game, and more players sharing in the excitement it’ll bring. This article approaches the idea of the community as a fully formed entity that is constantly paying out, and disregards that maybe it’s just that more players are joining in (Seriously nearly 500 000 backers even at the lowest price is an impressive $15million)

Anyway if you read the stretch-goals you might of noticed that they become less feature intensive as time goes on, seriously the latest goal is a cosmetic item ($1000000 for a space plant!). So no, I don’t think the goals are going to “hurt the game”.

This article is clickbait, but I don’t care since it brings more people’s attention to this amazing game.

Tufao

On July 4, 2014 at 6:00 am

” This article approaches the idea of the community as a fully formed entity that is constantly paying out, and disregards that maybe it’s just that more players are joining in”

Yeah… The article disregard that MAYBE…
Hahahahahahahah
Awesome!

No, sir. You disregard facts. They did not sell a relevant number of copies (translated in money) as their own graphics shown, after the release of Arena Commander… even the Hangar release sold more, and you know that means? A fall. A big fall… and if you have more than a half brain, you know what that means…
And then, just a few days after the AC release, in order to hide this fact from people superficial like you, they promoted a ship sales, and that sold a lot, raising their numbers in money… and you sincerely think that a release of the game did not attract new people, but a ship sales attracted? Seriously… You probably are a kid, or passionate by the game, I don’t know… but what you said is kind of a joke.

Tufao

On July 4, 2014 at 6:05 am

“Anyone in here is free to wait for the final game, buy it at store and play it for free online or alone.
Anyone is also free to pledge as low as $30 and get access to the release version of both Squadron 42 and Star Citizen.

You probably work for EA. Or should send your rèsume. You definitely would fit there. You would have a lot of good things to say about their “F2P” games, since your arguments are the same EA arguments for this kind of business model.

You do not see a Pay Wall because you clearly do not see too much.

I have a friend that is seriously passionate by his wife and do not see what everyone already know from months, that his wife is betraying him with her boss. So, it is usual. You are just a blind passionate person. I hope that you did not get disappointed at the end, because many people, less passionate than you, definitely will be.

Tufao

On July 4, 2014 at 6:11 am

“seriously the latest goal is a cosmetic item ($1000000 for a space plant!). So no, I don’t think the goals are going to “hurt the game”.”

These guys cannot see how a “Space Plant” for 1 freaking million dollars sounds to people.
Because they cannot see that, they think that “it does not hurt the game”.

Seriously. More stretch goals with features would have A LOT less chances to hurt the game than the potential of an offering of a towel or a space plant for 1 freaking million dollars and how that sounds for general people, that could become backers in the future…

They only look to that and think that these devs are making jokes on people that are giving money to them. It is extremely ridiculous, but these SC fanboy, as I said before, are unable to see not even what is in the front of their nose, because all their perspective is the perspective of a blind passionate person.

Jack Paschke

On July 4, 2014 at 10:28 am

Chris Roberts just wrote a long letter explaining that he himself believed that “stretch goals” seemed a bit pointless this point. He himself explained that they would be using new funds for implementing new technologies and NOT new game play elements. I think K it is perfectly reasonable le for CIG to use their endless onslaught of donations to implement new tech like DX12. He has also stated that many of these features will come AFTER the games release in rolling updates every few months. That strategy invokes much more confidence than this under-researches article would have you believe.

Tubz

On July 4, 2014 at 11:37 am

Ohh look its that guy that posts hate on every SC article lol. whats the opposite of fanboy ?

Tufao

On July 4, 2014 at 4:17 pm

The opposite of a fanboy is who says the true. Something that is very difficult to find in any message of Cloud Imperium Games as well as, following their example, the own group of 2 or 3 hundred people that stays all their days in the CIG Forums, calling themselves “Community”.

T. Jetfuel

On July 5, 2014 at 8:58 am

I’d like to see this game completed so I could possibly buy it in case it’s good. But it seems that many of the funders are caught up playing the Game Development Game, in which you keep pumping in money to prolong the process. I don’t care for that game, I like video games.

Jay

On July 7, 2014 at 8:37 am

I had hoped that at some point, they would drop the whole cash 4 credits scheme. Here it is at nearly 50 million dollars, and they’re still going to allow players to purchase credits, which reeks of pay 2 win to me. I backed it, since the price was right for a preorder of 2 potentially good space games, but my hopes aren’t high. So far, what I’ve seen is too much about flash, not enough about substance. Will be interesting to see what the ‘little version of the persistent universe’ is like at the beginning of 2016. Hope it doesn’t damage crowdfunding too badly.

Scruffy

On September 15, 2014 at 9:34 pm

It’s a scam!