Report: #1238807

Complaint Review: Robert Space Industries

  • Submitted: Mon, June 29, 2015
  • Updated: Mon, June 29, 2015
  • Reported By: Gilberto — Alabama USA
  • Robert Space Industries

    Internet
    USA

Show customers why they should trust your business over your competitors...

How is it that a Boeing certified virtual airliner ship like the PMDG 777 or PMDG 737 NGX for Microsoft's Flight Simulator X and Lockheed Martin's Prepar3D that faithfully simulates over 99% of the real aircraft's counterparts sells for a fraction of the price of this yet to be delivered RSI ship that in no way shape or form will ever match the quality and fidelity of a PMDG product? Intrinsically, either the PMDG products are worth more but being sold too cheaply, or RSI is suggesting that its Genesis Starliner is worth far more?

Tell me if this was a single player simulator who would really pay $400 USD + tax for this virtual ship? Okay I get it, they are pricing it so that it is an 'exclusive' and it is not meant that everyone can afford this ship. If that is the case, then why set the price at $400? Why not say, we will only ever produce (sell) a limited number of these ships, and there will not be any more. [continued below]....

..... And then let the gamers and backers BID on it and let that determine the price?

What gives me the most cause for concern is that by asking for an arbitraryily high price of entry, there is absolutely no guarantee of any sort from RSI that they won't do a little quantitative easings of their own down the road when they need a second or third round of cash infusions and then what is to stop them from selling out the early "exclusive" members of the Genesis club by offering it at a much reduced price to the general public and masses once they already got what they could from the so-called high rollers?

They are basically just printing money, it is a license to create value out of thin air, virtual ships and bits on a server, cost them nothing in terms of variable cost of production. What they are really selling is the exclusivity of the ship at this point, much more so then the actual instrinic value of such a virtual ship itself... Ironically, that should give us all the greatest pause because given RSI actions and behaviors there is nothing to lend anyone to believe that RSI won't do a bait and switch and devalue the value proposition of the Genesis @ $400 by later selling it @ $200.

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This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 06/29/2015 08:11 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/robert-space-industries/internet/robert-space-industries-star-citizen-the-genesis-starliner-money-grab-cash-cow-pump-an-1238807. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

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#1 Consumer Comment

Star Citizen scam us all!

AUTHOR: Verax - (USA)

The Original Kickstarter TOS and the original Star Citizen Terms/TOS back in 2012 said NOTHING about waiving rights to jury trial, or not being able to sue them, etc. That was the TOS that we and many backers agreed to. After spending my money on Kickstarter I didn't pay CIG any more money. I never "clicked to agree" to any other TOS nor did I download their s*y software. And they can't prove with a preponderance of the evidence that I've been on their website. They have since changed the TOS many many times and now the version in 2015 forbids any lawsuits or class actions or jury trials or even rebukes any claims of 'virtual goods' having 'value', and now gives them a freaking 18 months to be late before refunds can even be asked, and also has an get out of jail free card clause that actually says if they don't produce any game, don't produce any virtual ships, etc they still won't need to give any refunds so as long as they can produce an "audited cost accounting" on the website to explain away why they blew 85 mil. In other words, as long as they can vaguely claim they acted in good faith, they are good......

Even in the latest TOS, nowhere does it mention the word "donation". CIG is not a ph* charity or foundation. On their TOS, a "Pledge" is defined as a payment or a "deposit". And "Pledge"s are to be used for development, production and delivery "COSTS" for the relevant pledge items and the "Game costs" which includes but is NOT limited to operating and hosting the game, the Website, and all other RSI Services and RSI's corporate expenses associated with the game.

Supposedly pledge money are first applied to the Pledge Item Cost, and what is left over is on a pro rata pari passu (whatever the p***k that means) basis spread to the rest of the "game costs".

So in EXCHANGE for (consideration) RSI claiming to "agree" to good faith business efforts to "deliver", "WE" agree that all pledge amounts (deposits) shall be non-refundable regardless of whether or not RSI eventually delivers jack squat or not. And we "irrevocably waive any claim for refund" for any Pledge. As long as we can't prove they did not act in bad faith....

My problem with all this bulls* wording is that NONE of the above exists in the original contracts, TOS, terms, EULA, etc that were in place back in 2012 when we actually did the backing. Since RSI never actually ever DELIVERED on anything, whether real, virtual, tangible, intangible, etc then for the original backers nothing has changed and we should not be forced onto the revision TOS. We should still be able to go by the original TOS. Including original backers doing class action lawsuits. and jury trials.

In the newer TOS, "Virtual Goods" are now defined as ships, characters, weapons, fuel, even "ship insurance" and "points" and "credits". We acknowledge that we only have a "limited license right to access" Virtual Goods and that we agree never to assert or bring any claim or suit against RSI, which is related to or based on, 1) Claim that you "own" any virtual goods, etc 2) Claim of "value" of virtual goods 3) and so on and so forth....

So my problem with this is that this s* didn't exists in the original TOS. BUT even taking the NEW TOS as the gold standard and forget my other argument for a second we are still left with the issue that CIG is not even ph* selling Virtual Goods right now! (at least not for the most expensive s**t) They don't even have a game in which to use the virtual goods, they are selling CONCEPT sales of virtual goods that have yet to be delivered! Concept sales or promissory Virtual Goods or undelivered Virtual Good have NOT been covered in the TOS. And this includes insurance LTI on nonexistent virtual ships too! I'm not a lawyer but this is a huge distinction! You can't return digital goods that you brought at Wal-Mart if you USED them but if they are in shrink wrap package and never opened then you CAN refund them. So all the bulls* about "Virtual Goods" doesn't even apply to s* like the Starliner or Idris or Javelin, etc because these virtual goods don't even exists! They have never been finished, haven't been delivered and have never been accessed even for the "limited license right to access" and thus they should be REFUNDABLE. (esp if CIG ends up never delivering said ships,game etc at all !)

A pledge is NOT a donation. A pledge is a DEPOSIT of monetary payment.

The way RSI has it structured is that pledges for pledge items such as virtual ships go towards that virtual ship first, and then when done, it goes towards the rest of the core game. This means when push comes to shove all the people paying $$$$$ for the most $$$$$ ships are the ones that are likely to get the most ripped off. They imagine they will get this super high quality thing, but in reality, RSI is probably going to spend only a tiny fraction of what actually people paid for the most expensive ships into the actual ships themselves then call it done, once they call it done, they can legally say how it is in our TOS that the rest of the "used" monies that went for the pledge item(s) get funneled towards the rest of the "the game costs" which is far broader than the more narrowly defined "pledge costs" and which includes Chris Roberts paying hookers on tropical islands as a business related "expense". When push comes to shove, does anyone really expect CIG to do the "right" thing here?!?!?!

Now you know why they made a "hanger module"? Look at the language of their TOS. For all the dumb ph* that spend $$$$$$ on those $$$$ ships.... one day CIG will want "out" and the best way out is to have a programmer spend about 5 minutes each or 5 dev dollars on each of the $$$$ ships, make it look like a f* borg cube and call it a day ["You ack. and agree that the pledge items delivered to you may differ in certain aspects from the description of those pledge items that was available on the Website at the time of the pledge"] then the rest of the money that went towards the Pledge cost (which would be like 99.9999999% of it] can now go towards the "game cost" which includes ex-strippers with marketing degrees triple dipping on the salary jars, and all other bulls*. Since the hanger module IS finished, all they have to do is cranked out all the most expensive ships even if it looks like s*, then put them in the hanger module, then call it a "delivery" and now no one is going to get any ph* refunds for ships or games. And for people who kept hanging around in the hanger module (pun intended) by virtue of them keep logging into the RSI account and using the RSI launcher they "agreed" to the revisions of the NEW TOS, which means no one can do class action or sue them for s*.

Using real money for the buying and trading of virtual ships that can't be played in a game that doesn't even exists..... Chris Roberts is a genius!

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#2 Consumer Comment

Chris Roberts will cut and run

AUTHOR: CMDR_Lasky - (USA)

It is fishy, as a backer of more than $300 bucks I can say that with confidence. Star Marine is delayed, all that is coming out is more "concept" stuff, new concept ship, and CIG makes another million or so, that's all I have been seeing. And everyone else can only be referring to the so called "leak" lol. And what was in the leak.....CONCEPT SHIPS...CONCEPT STUFF EVERYWHERE !!! Honestly, having bought a house and a car in the past two years, I feel a good salesman, pitched us a CONCEPT, we as space sim fans ate it right out of his hands, and he made millions off of a few promises (that aren't being fulfilled, what happened to the "Pledge" they made to us in 2012 when I backed this game !) Because if you go read "The Pledge" we are not getting the level of transparency we were promised. This is literally turning into one of the biggest letdowns of my life. I feel HONESTLY, that by the time this game would be anywhere near done, Chris Roberts will book the first Galactic Virgin flight to the moon and give us all the bird. Just my opinion and my two cents, cant wait to see you sheeple who don't believe in speculation come play hero for CIG. As soon as they said: "well it would be too difficult to make all the interactions for the ship on displays" Well I remember hearing all the controls would be on the ship, NOT ON A FREAKING HUD, what is that, laziness. They took they easy way out before AC was even released, that was when I let the hairs on my neck start standing up and listening. Im not one of those who thinks the scope is too big or that its impossible to run into delays, BUT USE YOUR BRAIN, they are telling us that an engine that was MADE FOR AN FPS, wont work as an FPS........I firmly believe that by making larger scopes like this, we progress farther and farther, I think they chose the wrong engine. Crytek 3 was made for (compared to SC) small maps for FPS. Unreal 4 would have been a way better choice, it looks 100x's better, it is 100x's more optimized to run on a broad spectrum of machines, and is easier to work with. If you really read what they are saying about the netcode, if your read between the lines, they are basically saying they don't f**king know what to do, if not then Chris wouldn't have been QUOTED saying that SM is delayed INDEFINITELY. Which, yes, when four MAJOR game journalism companies quote him saying that, I would tend to believe it is true, Chris is a smart man, and using a word like indefinitely vs. temporarily speaks volumes. Even funnier is they are now banning people who say stuff like this, and if I get banned, well lol we will see where the chips may fall, you cant ban someone for sharing their ideas on a project they helped fund lol, its childish and absurd. That is what children do when they are wrong, they scream and try to silence the person saying the true and right thing. This is simply a matter of sticking to your word of transparency and honesty, we know illfonic told you it wouldn't be ready, but you told us it would be knowing that, that's bad juju.

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#3 Consumer Comment

Star Citizen is a scam and will never get made

AUTHOR: Derek Smart - (USA)

reaxxion.com/10195/why-star-citizen-is-likely-going-to-be-a-complete-disaster

dereksmart3000ad.tumblr.com/post/123125564079/interstellar-citizens

 

Previously, in October 2012, Chris Roberts of Wing Commander fame, having left the industry back in the 90s for Hollywood, announced Star Citizen via Kickstarter.

He was looking to raise $500,000, but ended up with $2.1 million on Kickstarter. More on this later.

The original pitch was for a game that blended Wing Commander with Privateer with a dose of Freelancer, three of his previous games. And we were all on-board with that, me to the tune of $250 in funding.

The delivery schedule was November 2014. We’re still waiting.

As of this writing, the game’s crowdfunding has not only ballooned to an unprecedented $85 million, but so has the scope.

The entire bulk of the crowdfunding, after sailing past that initial $2.1 million Kickstarter funding, was in selling futures. No, seriously, hear me out. Someone figured out that the hype around this game was so huge that they may as well start selling ice to Eskimos. And they did just that.

Not that I’m saying there’s anything wrong with that. After all, that’s what raising funds for a project is about: selling. But it’s a double-edged sword. And usually, if you’re dealing with seasoned and experienced investors or even publishers, if they’re not convinced or even interested, you’re not getting the money. And if you do get it, that money comes with strings… usually pretty long and taut strings. With crowdfunding, no such strings exist, and you can pretty much do what you want. And that’s usually where trouble starts.

So they are making concept art for ships, some were actual models, and then selling them at a premium. People keep buying them. This, despite the fact that there is still no “game” to play them with. In short, the result is that you have ships you’ve bought, with no game to play them with.

Basically, they went from a baseline space combat with trading game with these bullet points:

    A rich universe focused on epic space adventure, trading and dogfighting in first person.
    Single-player: offline or online (drop in/drop out co-op play)
    Persistent Universe (hosted by US)
    Modable multiplayer (hosted by YOU)

To the behemoth they’ve now promised which includes the following (an incomplete list, by the way) features, all of which make up the development phases:

    Rich, persistent universe with 100 (!) populated star systems
    Dynamic economy with millions (!) of entities
    Newtonian physics
    Space combat
    Trading
    Exploration
    Ship upgrades (engines, weapons, etc.) and customization
    Multi-crew ships (your friends can exist in your ship)
    Activities including mining, harvesting raw materials, factories, and so on
    First person inside ships with combat
    First person inside stations with combat
    First person on level-based planetary hubs with combat
    Career based progression with stats
    Single player and co-op mode (Squadron 42)
    Multiplayer (Star Citizen)

It has been designed in a modular fashion, which has led to some confusion. Here is an excerpt that breaks it down further.

    Core Concept

    The core concept of Star Citizen is that it’s a destination, not a one-off story. It’s a complete universe where any number of stories can take place. Players will have the opportunity to decide their own game experience. Pick up jobs as a smuggler, pirate, merchant, bounty hunter, or soldier. It’s a universe we’ve always wanted to create. We want to build a huge sandbox with a complex and deep lore that allows the players to explore in whatever capacity they want.

    Squadron 42

    The project also includes Squadron 42, a single player campaign that takes place within the Star Citizen universe. Able to be played off-line or with friends, you essentially sign up to fly for the UEE fleet, manning the front lines, protecting settlements from Vanduul warbands. If you prove yourself, you might get asked to join the legendary 42nd Squadron. Set up like the French Foreign Legion, they can always be found in the toughest war zones and always manage to come out on top. Once you complete your tour however, you re-enter the persistent Star Citizen universe with some money in your pocket and Citizenship to find your way.

    Open World Architecture

    The great thing about this is that you don’t have to do Squadron 42.

    You can basically decide that you’re going to be a merchant or pirate and never join the military. Having that choice for the player is fantastic. What we’re talking about here is a combination of everything that made Wing Commander great along with everything that made Privateer great. The single-player military campaign sits inside this open world architecture in a holistic fashion.

    While you will probably spend a majority of time in the cockpit there will be first-person mechanics built into the game. When you are flying on some of the bigger ships (transports, carriers, etc.), you will be able to wander the halls of the ship while a friend pilots, jump on a turret if you get attacked, even repel attempted boarders if needed.

I am not even going to touch on what can go wrong when you have different studios, in different states and countries, working on various aspects of the same massive game. If you know a producer who has ever worked with external contractors and/or studios on a project, have a chat with him or her, listen to the horror stories; then multiply that by a factor of ten. Only then will you begin to get the full picture of what could go horribly wrong here.

As of this writing, having sailed past the original November 2014 delivery date, in over three (Chris indicated that they started the project one year before the Kickstarter crowdfunding) years of development, they’ve thus far delivered the following:

    A hangar where you can see and walk around the ships you’ve bought
    A combat training simulator, Arena Commander, where you can dogfight with some—not all—of the ships you’ve bought thus far in the game. And there’s racing. Not to mention the fact that, as of this writing, that module still can’t even handle 8 vs. 8 combat engagements without terrible issues.

And they’ve made a lot of impressive videos, some pre-rendered (?), and some using the power of the CryEngine3 cinematics profile. More on this later.

Without disrespect to anyone, I’m just going to say it: this game, as has been pitched, will never get made. Ever.

There isn’t a single publisher or developer on this planet who could build this game as pitched, let alone for anything less than $150 million.

The original vision which I backed in 2012? Yes, that was totally doable. This new vision? Not a chance.

The technical scope of this game surpasses GTAV, not to mention the likes of Halo.

Do you have any idea what those games cost to make and how long they took?

Do you know how many games which cost $50 million to make took almost five years to release? And they were nowhere in scope as Star Citizen?

And whatever it is you’re thinking about right now, stop. Let me give you something else to think about as a segue.

I started to make this game, first in 1989, released in 1999. Then again in 2003, again in 2004. Again, and again, and again. Each time making progress as tech caught up with my ideas.

Finally, in 2009 I gave up and released the culmination of my works as a Collector’s Edition. To mark the 25th year anniversary of the Battlecruiser series back in August 2014, earlier this year, I updated and released that CE edition for free on Steam.

Go play (or read the complete docs) it if you’re up to it. If the 97 page tutorial doesn’t make your heart stop, check your pulse: you may already be dead. It remains the only game of its kind ever made. And the only all-encompassing capital ship combat game there is. You’re welcome.

And in every interview, every article, every dev blog, I’ve said the same thing: these are the most complex, difficult, and technologically challenging games to make. And being an indie—and for the most part media—whipping boy, there are those who vilified me for chasing my dreams and for trying to achieve a seemingly insurmountable goal. All because they didn’t understand what exactly it is I was dealing with, or trying to make. Even mad scientists have it easier than I did.

Here we are. And it’s 2015.

And since it’s not Derek Smart or some low hanging gamedev fruit who has gone out and crowd-funded $85 million of someone else’s money to make a game that’s all but impossible to make, the mainstream media have remained largely mum about the whole thing, other than doing article after article after article about the game, the funding etc. Nobody has asked the tough questions as to how on Earth they’re going to pull off something this unprecedented.

But if this fails, the media are going to be the same ones to tear into them. I have seen it happen time and time again. It’s a very vicious cycle.

The RSI devs have all the same insurmountable problems that I have encountered over two decades of chasing this whale, and which have not only led to their delays, but also the recent announcement that the first person module was on hold came as no surprise to me.

I have it on good authority that it’s not even on hold, but that they’re probably not going to finish it both because it won’t work within the current framework and it wasn’t in the original design as spec’ed, since it has ballooned to what it is today. So naturally, it’s the first thing to go, or put on indefinite hold while they figure things out.

Remember: the game, first and foremost, is a space combat game, not a first person combat game.

At least you will still have your hangar (which is completely and 100 percent detached from the game framework, by the way), in which you can still walk around in first person mode to look at your ships. And Arena Commander.

Why wasn’t I surprised that they’ve started cutting things out, starting with this? Well, because after spending over two decades making a game like this, you pretty much know what to expect.

Right from the start in 2012 when they said that they were using CryEngine3 as their baseline, I was skeptical. But if they kept the scope, and scene sizes manageable, I felt that it was totally doable.

Once the feature creep and increased scope started to unfold, I knew they were in trouble.

Remember what I said earlier that there is no game engine on the planet that would power the game I wanted to build, and that I’d have to build it? Yes, same thing here. That is precisely why all the top-tier developers build their game engines around the game they’re making. And even those who end up licensing middleware game engines do so based on the fact that they are making a game that fits within the framework of the engine they’re licensing. Nobody is going to license UE4 to develop a flight sim.

That CE3 engine is, first and foremost, a first-person engine. Second, it is geared toward small scale session-based games. Now imagine using a level-based engine, suited for first-person games, and trying to build an open persistent world with it. That’s like me trying to outfit my Tesla with the engine from a Prius. Bad things can and will happen.

Don’t take my word for it: here is a list of games using all three generations of the CryEngine. See what I mean?

RSI decided to build this massive, all-encompassing game using an FPS engine as the baseline.

Using an excerpt from my “In Pursuit of Awesomeness” dev blog, let me list a subset of all what they have to cobble together in that CryEngine3 based custom game engine.

    First-person. This also includes the various animations, all of which have to be tweaked for each of the characters in the game. They also have to match the weapons, items etc.
    Player character physics, inventory and weapons handling.
    Aircraft physics and dynamics.
    Space combat environment.
    Planetside base landing, which has to handle transition from player craft, to first person to planetside base… seamlessly. Oh, and combat there as well.
    Interior rendering for the various ships, stations, planetside bases etc. Again, with support for combat.
    Everything seamlessly updated, synchronized, processed in real-time for a persistent universe in which, at any one time, players and NPC entities will be traveling, trading, fighting, exploring.

And no, having the source code doesn’t help much because you get to a point whereby you’ve made so many changes, and branched off the middleware developers base engine, that you can’t go back without problems. So they have their version, and you have yours. Good luck with those merges which can and often break everything.

Again, don’t take my word for it. Here is a technical excerpt from the Frankfurt team’s June 2015 engineering report.

    In June, Frankfurt Engineering deployed to the main codebase some major items that were planned for this month. As mentioned in the last monthly report, the Large World (moving the codebase to 64 bit coordinates), Camera Relative (rendering coordinates relative to the camera thus allowing galaxy size rendering without loss of precision), Zone system (the new Star Citizen spatial partitioning scheme, replacing Cryengine Octree) were close to hit the Star Citizen code mainline and have now been deployed, and will find their way into the various Star Citizen game modules soon.

    The integration of relevant CryEngine 3.7 SDK parts, combined with our new changes, is being deployed into our codebase as we are writing this. Additionally a large effort this month was spent on supporting multi-crew vehicle ships: local physics grid, physics debugger, entities and prefabs, support for new 3D VisArea shapes, all this combined with the Zone System, are being worked on in the context of operating moveable ships. Amongst the other things, the multi-crew development process exposed a few bugs and incorrect functionalities that have been living in the CryEngine codebase for years …
    
We too had technical issues with Havok Vision Engine, and we don’t even have the source. We’ve written so much custom code for LOD that we don’t even pay any attention to the Havok engine point releases anymore. The only time we actually get to do a code merge (much to Jon’s chagrin), is if they have serious bug fixes or performance tweaks which we must have. Then it’s like a week of no progress during that merge. And usually, all hell breaks loose and most things fall apart.

And unfortunately for us, if we miss merging a point release, by the time we get around to it, we have to pay support (yearly) fees in order to get the latest version.

We as game devs, can go for days without a solid build, let alone one that actually, you know, works. We all go through this sort of thing consistently. It’s a rite of passage.

It doesn’t matter that you have an “open” development process with feedback loop to backers. Plus, from what I know, it’s not that open anyway, because there’s only so much that you can tell the public without inciting panic which is likely to turn off the money spigot. It’s no different from not coming clean with your investors, or publisher, because you don’t want to deal with the drama or lose funding. Or you’re just being dishonest.

The average gamer has no clue that game development is not as glamorous as it seems. Even when they have nothing invested in a game, they’ll have an opinion on it. Imagine what happens if they’ve got money in it. Which is precisely why Early Access gets such a bad rap.
The End Game… Wait! What End Game?

The problem that RSI is now faced with is something that us vets all saw coming a mile away. This level of exposure, all the press, the promises, the hype, the glorious anti-establishment chanting and rhetoric etc.: all of it has a very bad downside.

And it’s not like the rumblings haven’t been there. Every time there is new press about a funding milestone or yet another ship concept cash grab, there is some derogatory rhetoric associated with it because most backers are fed up and just want the game they were promised back in 2012.

Others are just waiting for the day when it all comes crashing down, so they can point, chuckle, and say they saw it coming.

And last I checked, some people had spent over $5,000 on this game. Even if you don’t want to believe that, believe this: they’ve raised about $85 million from 918,806 backers. That is an average of $92 per gamer.

A couple of weeks ago last month, when there was news about the FTC going after failed promises made by someone who crowdfunded a game, there were various discussions about the terrible precedent which would be set if this game failed to deliver and if a bunch of people reported it. And that’s no joke. We’re talking $85 million. That’s a lot of cash. Other people’s money.

If you spend $30 and get a generic game, you’ll post a bad review, tell all your friends etc. Eventually, you will move on. It happens. But in this instance, given all what has transpired, and all this money, gamers aren’t going to let it slide. Even if they lost $19.

No; they’re going to ask WTF happened to “all that money?“ because now it’s their money, not some faceless investor’s, or even a publisher.

And they’re going to be pissed because they expected more than a hangar and a largely buggy Arena Commander module which isn’t representative of the game they were pitched back in 2012, and which has to have been delivered two years later in Nov 2014.

As I’ve said before, I want this game to succeed for a lot of selfish reasons, least of all being that I funded it. I mostly want it to succeed because we don’t have any games like this in the genre, and not even my games can fill that void because they are super complex, pretty old, don’t look as pretty etc. You know, different budgets, different production values etc. And I really don’t care who makes it. All I know is that before I die, I want to play it. Is that too much to ask?

I also want it to succeed in whatever form because if it doesn’t, it’s going to be another massive gamedev and videogame crowdfunding black eye. I know people who are already rumbling that if this fails that it is going to be more epic than the collapse of 38 Studios in the Summer of 2012. And that $75 million was mostly tax-payer money.  And almost three years now, that one is still playing out in the courts.

What I mean by this comparison is related to the following, all of which happened to 38 Studios, it’s creators, primary execs, politicians etc. and how the media handled it:

    The amount of public money raised is not something to ignore. Like that studio’s sudden implosion in 2012, it’s a lot of money. The kind of money that makes every lawyer, politician, analyst etc., perk up their ears and try to get involved in the fray.
    Given the number of studios working on this project worldwide, the sudden loss of jobs would be catastrophic for some people, most of whom had to relocate to get their jobs.
    The hype surrounding this project since its 2012 inception is going to guarantee that every media outlet is going to want a piece of the action, and most of that is going to be based on sheer speculation, wanton conjecture, bullshit anonymous “sources” etc., because the focus would be on vilifying Chris and crew, rather than focusing on what mistakes were made.

And I need not even mention APB as another example.

To add to the noise, there are reports that people (Travis Day, a senior producer left recently) at RSI have been leaving, the executive producer (!) (UPDATE. It has been confirmed to me that Alex Mayberry, the Exec Producer, hired a year ago, is no longer at the company) is on his way out, and they’re spending more than they’re bringing in because crowdfunding has peaked etc.

The understated economics of game development is quite simple. For as long as I’ve been around, and seen so many projects fail because they ran out of funds, you’d think that by now this is something every developer and publisher would be aware of, and plan for it:

    If you’re spending $2 and bringing in $1, you’re in trouble.
    If your studio is burning through $2 million a month, then you need $24 million a year in funding. If you’re selling less than $2 million a month, you’re in trouble.
    If your studio has $24 million to make a game over a period of two years, and you’re burning more than $1 million per month, you’re in trouble.
    If your budget is down to the wire, in that you don’t have a buffer of at least 15% of your funds in reserve, and which you can use for unforeseen expenses during development, you’re asking for trouble.

None of the departures, delays etc. should necessarily be regarded as a sign of trouble for the project. When you start to scale back or hunker down, people leaving, delays, stuff getting cut etc. is all par for the course. What you can expect though, for something of this scope, is that it’s going to get scaled back. That’s assuming that it ever sees the light of day.

And if they scale it back, that’s going back on promises. And when that happens, it’s going to be a complete disaster. Guaranteed.

So to those of you who don’t know how this works, it doesn’t make any sense to scream “failure” when you have no clue just what (a lot) goes into developing these games.

It may succeed, it may fail; but for now, all we can do is watch how it plays out. But given the fiasco surrounding Freelancer—the other very ambitious game that Chris tried to make, and the disappointment that was the final game as delivered versus what was promised, after which Chris left the industry—we should all be worried. Especially this time around, there’s no Electronic Arts and no Microsoft to act as a tether, or for us to point the finger at and to hold accountable.

For me, I already know—for a fact—that they can’t build this game they’ve pitched, and which I was looking forward to someone making. So all I’m looking forward to now is getting my $250 worth of gaming. And right now, a hangar and Arena Commander, after three years of development and now eight months late, is not something that inspires confidence in me.

To the rest of you, I only have this to say: stop buying virtual items for a goddamn game you don’t have. What in the holy p***k is the matter with you?!? You know how many indie games you could’ve bought and supported and been PLAYING by now?!?

Knowing that the time for me to build that massive all-encompassing game within a reasonable amount of time and with my indie level resources had come and gone, I made a similar decision to reduce the scope. That was the plan around Line of Defense.

Even so, the only reason why you don’t get to fly capital (cruisers, carriers, transports) ships in the game, as you could in Battlecruiser/Universal Combat, is because:

    There are no playable capital ships in the game.
    The game world is too small for them.
    It’s a different kind of game.

Though it is smaller, we still needed to build a custom engine to power the immense scope of the game.

Even the single capital ship in the game, an Engstrom class carrier, is only in the game because I was clinging onto the notion that one day, the game would evolve via DLC which would allow me to not only continue expanding the world (though it would still be smaller in scale), but also add all the capital ships from the lore. So for now, my gamers running around inside the Starguard carrier in LOD, though unable to fly it, can well imagine what could’ve been.

Right now, even with that carrier, it’s not player-controlled because it’s not enabled. It’s just like any other aircraft or vehicle in the LOD game: it can be flown, if the mechanics for it are enabled. Which means that, even with that massive multi-deck behemoth, you could have 255 players in it, and one person flying it. Yeah. We built that.

If you have ever played* Line of Defense, then you already know how it is, and what all you can do in it. In fact, here are the complete game docs.

Now imagine if, back in 2010, I had set out to make a new game in the Battlecruiser/Universal Combat series with that level of fidelity. First, there won’t be a single machine powerful enough to run it reasonably well, even if each of the habitable planets only had one planetary base the size of the one in LOD. Second, the costs would be insurmountable for my small indie company.

The thing is, if I had $85 million to spend developing a game, regardless of whose money it was, I probably wouldn’t do it. But that’s just me.

In 2012, I did an interview with Russ Pitts for Polygon in which I stated the following:

    I’ve learned from everything I’ve done over the years and I’m still the same person who started out in the 80’s. When I’m gone, my games will be out there. Those who like them will be out there. Those who don’t like them will still be out there. But one thing I know is I’m still going to sleep at night because if I lost money, it was my own money. If I earned money, it was my own money. I never took advantage of anyone. I never caused anyone’s company to go under. I never put anyone out of work because of mistakes I’ve made. Every mistake I’ve made I’ve owned and I’ve always held myself accountable and I’m OK with that.

I have come to terms with the fact that, at my age, I will never be able to realize my dreams of building that awesome all-encompassing space and planetary combat game that I envisioned decades ago. And it wasn’t from my lack of trying, let alone expertise.

So I really do hope and pray that RSI can pull this off, because if someone like me, with all my experience and expertise on this very same subject and who has spent half a lifetime trying can’t do it without sacrificing something (visual fidelity, performance, scope etc) in the process, and they, with all this money and star talent can’t do it either, then it’s safe to say that it simply can’t be done. At least not in our lifetime.

That is all.

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#4 Consumer Comment

Contact the FTC and file class action lawsuit

AUTHOR: John - (USA)

CIG established certain representations and presented them to the gamers and players in order to induce sales of gaming platform subscriptions and in-game virtual ships. CIG profitted handsomely from the proceeds of these sales but have yet to deliver the goods nor make good on the premises, promises and expectations that it agreed to when making said sales.

These aforementioned representations that CIG presented to gamers directly influenced and impacted and were to become the foundation of the gamer's purchasing decisions at the time when they made their purchases. These established representations that CIG presented at time of sales that later on served to form and were to become the basis of certain reasonable expectations owed to the consumers were later on not upheld by CIG.

In certain relevant ways the reasonable expectations should serve to bind and control some of CIG's later behaviors, actions and decisions and should reasonably narrow and confine the breadth and latitude of CIG's future choices and development course and business decisions.

Yet by sigificantly deviating away from the preestablished conditions and expectations and by willfully and repeatedly acting in manners not consistent (and wholely inconsisent) with the good faith preserving and preservation of value of the virtual goods that were sold but yet to be delivered, nor with the good faith making good on and deliverance of goods and deliverables and promises in which CIG had represented, sold and recieved money for... all of these facts serve to indicates that CIG did not in good faith accurately represent what they sold and are continuing to act in a manner that in any other industry would be classifed as a ponzi pyramid scheme.

 

For starters, if I spent a bunch of money for a ship in EVE Online I get to play it right then and there. I don't have to wait years and years in the hopes that someday the EVE gaming platform will finally be released and that the core game itself will actually be playable. This is not the case for Star Citizen. Gamers who spent $2500 on the Javalin in Star Citizen many moons ago still yet do NOT get to fly their ship, nor do they get to play their ship in the open world universe that was promised but has yet to materialize. In point of fact, they do not even get to view their ship in the 3d hanger aka "'Hanger Module'" (which in my opinion is nothing more than a glorified 3d object viewer in Cryengine SDK).

So what are people really buying when they shell out $400 USD for a Star Citizen Genisis Starliner or a $2500 Javalin or $5000 USD for a Star Citizen Idris? Right now, quite literally, as it stands, they get little more than concept art pixels and the promise of a future creation of a virtual ship for a gaming platform who's existence itself is based on trust and more future promises. 

Put another way, if CIG was merely selling Star Citizen virtual ships with no expectation of a game behind it, i.e. if Star Citizen sold the Idris, Javalin or Genisis Starliner as working 3D model ships in the form of modules and textures how many people would still buy these overpriced ships if these virtual assets could not be played in the form of an online open world experience? If all you could ever do with these ships was render them in 3ds max or export them to Crytek sandbox or sdk and walk around and look at them would you really buy them? After all, you could probably buy 3ds max models of virtual ships much more detailed and aesthetic than the Javalin without having to spend $2500 USD. Most of the value proposition of the virtual ships that CIG are selling stems from the promise that they will be playable in the context and within the backdrop of a larger open-world ecosystem and persistent digital universe the CIG claims to be building. The virtual ships, of and by themselves as standalone in isolation are worth nothing, it is only when they are used in the proper context of a Star Citizen universe that they get their perceived value.

Obviously no one would be paying $5000 USD, $2500 USD or even $400 USD for a mere 3d model of a virtual ship. Yet we now come back full circle. Because as it stands, players who paid $5000 for the Idris, or $2500 for the Javalin or $400 for the Starliner do not even get the aforementioned standalone 3d models that we talked about earlier. CIG concedes these models don't exists, these virtual ships are not ready, and indeed even ships that were bought and paid for upfront months if not years ago still have not been developed and have not been completed or finished. In essence when players by a ship from Star Citizen - unlike within the EVE universe - they get nothing, except for concept art. 

Extend my 3d model analogy one step further. We have already established as self-evident that no one is going to spend hundreds of dollars on a 3d model of a virtual ship if they can't ever play it in a game... likewise, it would be even more ludicrous to suggest that anyone would spend thousands of dollars for some concept art of a 3d model of a virtual ship that they can't ever play in a game. 

Nobody shells out $5000+ for a few jpeg images of a ship! And yet that has all gamers have gotten so far when they purchased expensive virtual ships like the Idris, Javalin and Starliner. The entire value of these ships are riding on the reasonable expectation of delivery of completed working 3d models of these ships, textured and animated, and these virtual models themselves riding on the backs and within the background and larger context of a completed and working Star Citizen open-world online gaming platform and persistent universe. Without the later, the former loses its entire value proposition. 

But what is Star Citizen really doing? Star Citizen has admitted in writing on their website that they are using the money from the sales of the expensive virtual ships in order to be able to afford to lower the price of the more entry level virtual ships. First this makes no sense, virtual ships have zero variable cost of production. These entry level virtual ships in reference were already in existence, so it costs them absolutely zero in monetary terms to sell another million, billion or trillion units. Second, they already amassed $85 million in crowd funds, more than they have ever asked for and tens of millions more than what they originally stated was needed in order to finish the game completely and on time. They could very well have given these ships out for free if the wanted to. So trying to justify their continued artificial inflation of virtual ship prices in order to then turn out and subsidize the more entry level virtual ships by selling them at a discount makes no sense whatsoever. 

Star Citizen running into major issues with the core game and the gaming platform as a whole has done little to nothing to stop them from selling more and more virtual ships and at higher and more outrageous prices. If anything, they have gotten more bold and more audacious. They are essentially using funds collected from the sales of exorbitantly priced jpeg images of ships (to be clear, no one is buying flyable ships, or even 3d models of ships, all they are getting is concept art and a few images of ships and the mere promise, hope and/or expectation of eventually having these concept art turn into real virtual ships and ultimately being able to play them in a finished or released game with a TBD ETA) in order to continue perpetuating the sales of even more exorbitantly priced jpeg images of ships ad infinitum, and all the while original backers and the earliest gamers who had purchased some of these earlier ships have still not gotten anything tangible in return nor has CIG/Star Citizen in any substantial way delivered on these products and purchases that were paid upfront. From these facts, is this not the classical signs of a bona fide pyramid scheme or ponzi scheme?

In essence, right now as it stands, gamers are buying not virtual ships but pixel art tied to the expectation of virtual ships and the eventual release of a working open world gaming platform in which to fly and play and enjoy the aforementioned virtual ships. 

The more CIG uses the funds from the sales of these ships (virtual pixel art) to perpetuate the selling of yet even more pixel art of nonexistent and yet to be created ships in a still yet to be delivered game, the more it directly devalues, undermines, undercuts and erodes the original value and value proposition of the virtual ships that were sold by CIG, and bought and paid for by the gamers. The more CIG disproportionately focuses its resources and efforts on the pitching and selling of even more new ships the more it takes away from CIG being able to concentrate on actually finishing the core game and delivering and releasing the platform itself, not to mention actually completing the virtual ships that they have already sold and received funds for. 

CIG presented, put on sale and represented to the players and gamers a certain set of promises and expectations and these particular set of circumstances and representations that CIG laid out during the sales of these ships directly established certain sets of reasonable expectations that were the foundation and basis in which materially affected and influenced the gamer's original purchasing decision.

By significantly deviating from the pre-established conditions and expectations indicates that CIG did not in good faith accurately represent what they sold and are continuing to act in a manner that in any other industry would be classified as a ponzi pyramid scheme.

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#5 Consumer Comment

Invest in yourself instead.

AUTHOR: Darkbit - (USA)

Learn how to play the piano, go sailing, take a cruise or go on a trip. Get a certification or degree. Anything but this....

Forget the Genisis Starliner... What about the Javelin, which went on sale for $2,500. Only 200 of these ships were made available, resulting in a profit of $500,000 or half a million dollars for the Star Citizen team. Each batch of ships sold out instantly, within 5 minutes, and some by players accounts within seconds. These ships are account locked (any ship above $1,000 is bound to account) so while other ships can be sold, this is a lifetime purchase, and in addition you are not allowed to sell CIG accounts.

The first issue I have with this ship, beyond the exploitive nature in which it is sold, is the price tag. For $2,500 you can buy a used car that runs and will last you years and maintain the value that you invest into it. For $2,500 you can buy almost any luxury good or multiples (Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Bvlgari, Tiffany, etc.) including diamond rings, designer handbags, more than 5 pairs of designer glasses, and more items that could, depending on what you buy, maintain and even appreciate in value. Your parents or financial advisor might suggest putting the $2,500 into bonds or ETFs, setting aside $500 for emergencies and the other $2000 in something that returns value on itself.

These are all items that maintain value and can be traded in the public market legally. Looking into items that don't hold value, you could easily purchase a best in class T.V. A 70" full retail 4K T.V. is only around $2,000. You can get a non-4k 80" T.V. at around that price. Assuming you can fit it into your home, everyone around the block would come to watch everything on it obviously. $2,500 would purchase a half month long cruise at full price and I'm not sure on discount cruises (you know, ones you buy a month or so before they leave port) you can find something near that price.

Travel abroad - you could spend a summer overseas with $2,500 if you get cheap enough airfare. A plane ticket might be $1,200 but the rest would go a long way if you live frugily for a few months. This is a major life experience.

While I understand people have the ability to spend their money as they please and I believe in the free market and allowing everyone to spend their money however they please, at the same time we have to look at the method in which these items are for sale, who they are targeted to, and the reasoning behind it.

CIG claims that the ships price was ABOVE RETAIL to help FUND the $20 starter packs that were also of limited quantity. Basically, players "donating" $2,500 to the glorious cause were helping to fund starter packs that were half off of their $40 normal price tag. So basically, you give CIG $2,500 and they give you a ship, with no weapons or equipment (an empty hull), and at the same time you're helping them discount A VIRTUAL GOOD by HALF OFF. Even big box retailers are nicer than that. They don't say, "okay everyone buying these Skylander characters above retail will help us discount the physical starter kit to get more people addicted!" No, they just discount things, because they want them to sale.

CIG could just as easily went and discounted the package. The game is paid for now. There is no need for additional development resources. The game WILL NOT consumer the current budget, considering they just got in TWO DAYS what most game developers need to finish THEIR FULL PROJECTS START TO FINISH. They got basically the SAME AMOUNT they asked for to even make the game originally from their Kickstarter, this time without Kickstarter fees.

We've only just touched on the marketing. There are only half a million or so "Star Citizens." So all of the money made so far, the 65 million plus. Divide that by half a million and you come to $130 each on average. Naturally, there is a lot of backers at the smaller tiers, and only a handful who are throwing around the big cash, but never the less.  

Like microtransaction games, Star Citizen often encourages the community (and the big time backers) to keep donating, as they release ships that are better and more powerful. The Javelin, at its $2,500 price tag, is a much smarter buy than the Idris which is currently for sale in the War Pack for $5,000 replacing the meet Roberts for half a day perk (because CIG doesn't believe in what you buy is what you get, they can and will change anything they want to after you buy it because these are donations). So if you don't want to suck in the game and want to ride through space in style, then these ships are needed (even though they should all be available for sale at reduced prices at launch in-game).

Oh and the limited rarity? Hah, they're gonna be for sale in the game for less too. Figure that one out. Oh and it requires a huge crew to run as well, not that owning one of these won't instantly make you friends. As a quick note on the math, 5,000 $20 off deals is $100,000 loss in profit in the $500,000 earned back from the Javelin - of course, they still earn the $100,000 from selling all 5,000 Aurora packages, breaking even.

Let's touch on $65,000,000 and its meaning real quick as well. Most games get NOWHERE near this figure in development costs. A lot of big time games, including marketing, don't even reach this point. It's currently sitting at the 24th most expensive game of all time, almost overtaking Halo 3.

Yet, they need more money. Things are so hard around CIG they need people to really pinch together the funds to buy this ship, otherwise they just don't know how they're going to fund the pets they just promised. Which, btw, CIG offers both micro and macro transactions. So the stretch goal was more microtransactions for you to buy.

So you need to donate money to be able to help pay for them to sell you more things to help you pay for the next thing? HOW DOES THAT WORK???

As it stands, I can't even believe that Star Citizen is getting away with what it's doing. Everyone turns a blind eye to it, maybe reporting on some of the big numbers its throwing out, but at the end of the day I don't believe in a game that charges what CIG is charging when every other game on the planet can be bought at retail for less than $100 with everything included. There are very few games out that, with all DLC included, that don't even reach $100.

If you're a Star Citizen fan, that's fine, continue believing that the game will be alright. For me, at this point, as a consumer and someone who believes that merchants should offer things fairly, this is just not right. A warning that you don't have to buy this ship to enjoy the game isn't good enough, it should be $250 and be known as the most expensive ship ever, or not even be sold yet.

Why can't they wait until the game launches at this point to sell ships? I really wish Roberts would answer that question. Why can't they just stop making money for a second and work on producing the game, that's still just the Arena Commander and the Hanger. When? Hrm? Let's preorder more things for a game that's past his original development launch date (to original Kickstarter backers).

I'll write more in-depth about Star Citizen here shortly, I suppose, this is too long and too focused on one glaring issue with Star Citizen which is a $2,500 ship selling out within seconds and their new stretch goal of pets on your ship. Until then, I suggest thinking long and hard where your money could be better served until the game actually launches, at which point I would say once you play it and like it, you should invest into it, but there is no reason anyone right now should ever buy anything in the store until the actual product is "finished" or you know, at the somewhat alpha/beta mark where you know the game actually will be and not just the Arena Commander, but the actual you know, real game that's supposed to come.

I advocate anyone interested in SC buy one of the starter packs at around $35 and make sure it includes both games (Squadron 42 & Star Citizen) along with beta access. These are affordable options that will allow you to support the game (which doesn't need support anymore as far as I'm concerned at its current income rate) and give you access to the game which will let you actually try it before you invest any further. Anyone preordering ships should realize that many of them can't be used in the Arena Commander and the starter ships do work in the Arena Commander, so you can have fun with the game now and later on as well (and maybe even make some money off your money in the meantime).

For those that say you're not buying a ship but "supporting the game," just remember if they can't make a functional game at this point with $65 million before selling future rights to possible updates, then these might not be the people who you want to make the game for you. If Halo 3 can be made with almost as much money, Microsoft's huge marketing budget included, then uh, yeah...


From an if you care about ROI, don't invest in RSI, LOL.

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#6 Consumer Comment

Treated as a cash cow

AUTHOR: Dan - (USA)

I'm following SC from the very beginning. By sheer luck - but anyhow - I'm here for quiet a while. I was flashed with Chris's enthusiasm and the good vibrations the whole team sent out. I loved the first streams and Wingman's Hangar. I loved every bit of the ride until a few months ago. It's not about progress (or the lack of it) because I'm a software developer myself - I understand how hard it is sometimes to keep deadlines because of unforseen difficulties or other dependencies. And because I think I can see the game coming together at an increasing speed when I look at all the pieces.

Some people accuse CIG to waste money because they see seemingly finished ships go through iteration by iteration. Again I see this normal doing when working with agile software development - but more important - people forget that without those showcase ships and the Hangar + AC CIG would not have raised that much money... So... No... That's not about that too.

It's about the cash grab I feel this is turning into - and the way CIG seems to treat existing bakers and the things they made pledges for.
It's getting more and more obvious that it will NEVER be enough because of the ambitions - what I liked at first seems to turn against us. When Chris said that even with 75 Millions at hand he could not deliver the game in the level of detail we are currently seeing but would need to be toned down... That he needs the cash flow to be steady. I think that was the point when I looked at some recent changes from a new angle:

It started to think that they INTENTIONALLY change the roles of ships existing since the beginning to make space for new ships or variants to sell or just bringt ships better suited for a role than the ships or variants before.

This already started long ago when variants "suddenly" turned out to be more then just specialy outfited "base models". Not the same ship kited out for different jobs but different ships. From the discussions on the forums back then I remember a majority beeing dissapointed because that was what many expected... I THINK that CIG meanwhile understood that this is not what most of the bakers wanted to see so they will try to bring that modularity (back).

But still each new ships seems to be fancier than the existing ones. The ones that helped to get here. The ones people already pledged for.

Think of it:
The 300 racer variant - the fastest ship until - well the M50.
The Freelancer beeing the cargo hauler and explorers sweet spot - until the Taurus and the Aquilla.
The Aqilla for explorers - until the Carrack.
The Constellation - it was once said to be the borderline between single and multi crew. The biggest ship that a single person could operate efficiently. Not sure if that is still true.
Hornet - near mil spec Hardware - until the super hornet got nearer milspec hardware
Original Cutlass - just better Cutlass Variant
Avenger - powerful engines, big nosegun - nerfed - oh look the Vanguard got powerul engines and big nosegun


The Freelancer was meant to be the biggest ship able to chart unknown jump points. That is a known fact so old that I'm not able to bring any proof - because that was either said in WH or even earlier during a livestream in the original campaign. When they introduced the jump point sizes along with the Constallation Explorer variant - the logical step woudl have been to keep it that way and allow the freelancer to chart the smallest jump points or at least smaller jump points. They didn't. And I'm starting to think that this was because the needed that selling point for new ships to sell.

The Retaliator - I know a lot of people will not agree here - The Retaliator was a long range bomber - no fighter escort possible becasue there were no long range fighters... So the Retaliator was meant to be able to fight of a few fighters (and that's OK because of it's crewsize - 5 people in a Retaliator SHOULD be able to fight off 3-4 fighters). Looking at the pea shooters and the shield size - I'm wary if this was nerfed down so there is a need for the Vanguard.

This is not about stats - I don't care about actual stats until they hinder the roles or take away things that made a ship special. I do not care if one ship is better at certain things than another - or if a ship is better at everything. Because the ships NEED to be differnet.
But I'm left wondering when/if that will ever stop...

I expected more ships - but not that much before goLife and not sold for cash...
And I do not like how the existing/older ships are getting stripped of things that made them unique, get replaced by newer and better ones...
I think the moment CIG starts selling a Constellation Mk5 before go life - that would be the moment I have to turn an go...

And then the latest change to the weapon mounts and weapon sizes. Besides balancing issues. They made weapons people pledged for in the voyager store plain useless to some of them (unless they buy a bigger ship to mount the weapons to - they can't use them anymore). I see them investing time in bringing more and more weapons. But with a change like that - I would have assumed they would give the people affected at least the chance to exchange those weapons. But there is no money in that - so they don't ?

And all this makes me more and more worried about the microtransaction model. I start to feel very bad about that too. Especially reading how people are unable to understand that there should be a limit and it'd better be LOW...

I start to feel being treated as a cash cow... Milked and milked and...

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#7 Consumer Comment

Not NOICE or SWEET at all

AUTHOR: Edward - (USA)

From the opening post "Sweet" please explain how this is "Sweet"! Backing this game since July of 2013, one new $3000 dollar system to meet future requirements, two year Imperator subscriber, almost 3K in ships and getting news like this is not "Sweet or Noice". I dreamed of such a game since Wing Commander and Mr. Roberts had me from the day I heard of SC. I too have seen the delayed promises, the change of direction pissing me right off. I can't say I'm not waiting patiently anymore without some real sense of expression other than "Sweet or Noice" statement but a real perspective how I really feel.


I realize Chris is a perfectionist but the whole theory from the beginning was to have backer base input and Beta trials to set the mark for SC. We are seeing a change in that mode by not only delaying the promise but changing codes and formats just so he can have is perfectionist fix. To me there will always be one more reason or excuse instead of letting us play through and give serious and even technical input from some serious smart people in SC. Me I'm just a backer player with no developers mentality but sure can let someone know what is wrong or right.


I dropped being a subscriber and the last ship I will buy until game release was the Hull D. Yes I feel the sting of delays and procrastination from CIG and hearing why this isn't working and sorry but we need to start over with this or some other dilemma is just getting antiquated. Sorry but the BUCK ($$$) stops here for me, I paid my dues above and beyond and just don't feel the love anymore. Maybe when all is done and released that beginning joy and excitement will be in my soul again.

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#8 Consumer Comment

Scam Citizen

AUTHOR: Jon - (USA)

I'll agree 110% with eme on this one, Chris and CIG by extension are burning a lot of good will, I've said it myself what some ones drug habit too bad this month? over 80 million dollars raised to date and yet apparently it's not enough and CIG has to throw out another ship at stuipid pricing but people will sit and say that it's not a sign of things being wrong.... Just stop for five minutes and do some research on PC based games and you'll start seeing some 'alarms' even more so if you have any programming knowledge yourself.
for 80 million dollars I could have gone and developed
Quake 4, 6 times now,
Gears of War 8 times now
Lost planet 4 times
The Unreal 3 Engine two and 3/4th times
COD MW2 2 times (The production budget was only 40-50 million, the rest was marketing)
RIFT
The Witcher 2 about 10 times over
Defiance
Watch Dogs

I could continue the list here.. I for one am tired of 'late' excuses and false release dates which is all we have seen from day 1, the Dog Fighting Module... meant to be out by December.. wasn't, and the excuse then "Oh we have to redo it from scratch" ... .. .. oooook.. And you decided this when the day of release? it finally comes out as 'Hanger Module' and that was literally something most able modders could go and make in the Cryengine SDK themselves.. We won't get started on the Bugs or the lack of Control modification support etc etc etc that happened with Arena commander, or the shoody backend network code etc..

All of this and yet people continue to throw money, that's fine we have invested a lot FPS module.. due, announced.. failed to meet a deadline set by THEM, not by US.. and then 2 months on.. CR finally comes out with this letter as an excuse and a promise to honor the 'agreement' and 'pledge' he made to us original backers.. and has already failed to honor, by not being open and transparent on why CIG needs to continually ask for more funds for a game HE is ON RECORD as stating could be made 100% with backer money 30 MILLION dollars ago!
Ontop of that do you honestly think that the money we've "invested" in CIG has not been "reinvested" in bank,stock,land etc by CIG? at the very least it's sitting in a bank account acruing interest that way.. so our 'tracker' isn't the real sum they have made.. it's just how much we've handed over.

And before people go 'making games is expensive' yeah I know trust me I make simulation products so I know exactly how hard it is to make a 'game' or 'product' the thing is unlike most CIG brought the source code to Cryengine (By their own admission) they already had the hardest parts done for them but apparently they need to go reinvent the wheel or something and based on everything we keep reading might as well have gone and asked Frontier for the Cobra engine or something because I honestly am not seeing any of the Benefits from using the 'Cryengine' that should be there (fast development time, more focus on the 'content' rather than the 'backend' because its already in place).
But the part that annoys me the most about this is the brazen money grab, yet again.. Sorry we 'FAILED' to meet our own deadlines, here's out excuse.. oh can we have MORE money? What a joke, if I did the same in any other industry I'd have the customer ripping me to shreds.. To me the mor ethis continues the more I remember what happened with the last game that CR promised the world in.. Freelancer didn't live up to that.. it was over time, over budget, over hyped.. and this is looking to be a repeat.

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