Star Citizens and Feature Creep

So, a bit of a preface for this one, what is Star Citizen actually suppose to contain: All the stretch goals, by way of Roberts Space Industries.

Also, a bunch of information can be gotten outta the Kickstarter, so let’s start out with the intial promises:

Real quick, Star Citizen is:

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)
Mod-able multiplayer (hosted by YOU)
No Subscriptions
No Pay to Win

That, would be what we would have gotten for the half million US$ Chris Roberts wanted intially, those six things are the very default, the base line.

Are any of these avaliable in the present “Alpha”? Well, no, not at all, there’s only one system, the ships aren’t working at all, trading isn’t in and the universe is about as persistent as a Just Cause 2 multiplayer map.

Now, the mod-able multiplayer, hosted by yourself, have been placed in the backburner until after “launch”, meaning we’ll almost certainly never see it again.

No Subscriptions? Well, you can actually subscribe to CIG, supporting the Community updates or some nonsesnse, and if you believe that my son, then I have a fair few bridges I’d like to sell you.

No Pay to Win? Considering that you can litteraly buy any giant super-ship using actual money right now? Sorry, that’s pretty much Pay to Win, is it time-limited until launch? Sure, Cloud Imperium claims that they’ll stop selling actual ships when it goes live.

But the damage is already done my sweet little redditors, now a bunch of whales will have a massive advantage, in theory.

So yeah, game sure hasn’t reached any of the starting promises, a great sign, after 104,500,000 US$ MORE then actually needed.

Now, using the Six Million US$ goal from the Kickstarter, Star Citizen would improve Privateer with 100 total start systems, full Orhestral Music and Squadron 42, the first Episode at least, 16 missions in total.

Not bad, does any of this exist yet? Two years after it was suppose to? Nope, not even a single one of these items are actually implemented yet.

Now, one does wonder why this is. Until you look at the Stretch Goal at CIG own website, and they conflict with the goal in the Kickstarter. Oh boy.

The Kickstarter required more than six million to get Squardron 42 to 16 missions, CIG’s own website, requires three million for 35 missions.

At 12 million, the HANGARD module get’s Occulus Rift support, the hell? Also a bunch of nonsense about Motion Capture facilities and Sound studioes, which is odd.

Most Game Studioes just rent those, not even that massively expensive anymore, you’d imagine that FAMOUS HOLLYWOOD PRODUCER CHRIS ROBERTS would know that.

At 19 million US$, a monthly series about older games would be up on the RSI website, why? Fuck knows, utterly pointless. The monthly promise was broken four years ago by the way.

Most of the rest of the Goal are either useless ships that exists only as JPGs or stuff Elite:Dangerous already did or stuff no sane human being would even consider useful or sensible.

Joy of joy, eh?

While a substantive part of the promised gameplay is now available, we acknowledge that delivery of some game elements has been delayed due to expansion of Star Citizen’s scope. This expansion is a result of the community’s declared desire to have the initial release version of the game developed to a much greater depth than contemplated originally upon start of the campaign. It is inherent to the nature of crowdfunding that such an adjustment to the project may occur. Ultimately, this will benefit all backers including yourself, since every backer will be receiving a much greater value for his/her pledge, but it may – as in this case – cause an extension of the delivery dates.

Allow me to just quote that chunk of the e-mail CIG has send to all refund requests,not the “substantive” part of the promosed gameplay? Yeah, that’s not going to go anywhere in a sane courtroom.

So yeah, either feature creep killed Star Citizen years ago, or Chris Roberts is building a Hollywood production company infrastructure using crowdfunding, which he’ll then quitely rebuy from the shambles of this failure of a game.

Or just incompetence. Probably the last one.

Star Citizens and refunds.

Cloud Imperium Games (Cloud Imperium Games)

Dec 20, 14:32

Hi there,

Thank you very much for your patience with this ticket.

We have reviewed your account status and regret that we are not able to accommodate your request for a refund since it was received outside of the statutory 14 day period.

Your pledge was made as part of the crowdfunding campaign to raise funds for the development of “Star Citizen.” As such you were aware that the funds would be actively applied after receipt for this purpose, not idly maintained in a bank account, and therefore could not be subject to a refund once used. As you may know from the extensive information on our website Robertsspaceindustries.com, Cloud Imperium Games has been working diligently over the past 3 years on the development of the game, and now employs over 260 staff in four studios. 2,538 reports, updates and web shows have been made available during this time, and first modules with limited gameplay were offered as early as in fall of 2013 – by now hundreds of thousands of gameplay hours have been played on our servers. The development of the game is proceeding steadily, and a substantial part of the promised game offering dozens of gameplay hours has been made available to the backers in early release versions (see further detail below).

Pursuant to the terms of your agreement (see Sec. 4 of the Commercial Terms, and Sec. IV.A of the subsequent Terms of Service, as applicable, https://robertsspaceindustries.com/tos), your payment was a deposit to be used for the “Game Cost” (as defined therein), and such deposit has since been “earned by CIG and become non-refundable to the extent that it is used for the Game Cost…” You further agreed to “irrevocably waive any claim for refund of any deposit amount that has been used for the Game Cost and Pledge Item Cost in accordance with the above.” The only exception would be a return of unearned funds remaining in case of an abandonment of the project. If you pledged on Kickstarter, you agreed to these terms when you transferred your pledge account to robertsspaceindustries.com.

These terms are consistent with the specific nature of crowdfunding and the foreseeable use of your pledge – we hope you appreciate that we cannot ask our hard working personnel to return some of their salary nor that it would be appropriate to use current backers’ funds provided for game development as a refund for an earlier and committed pledge.

While a substantive part of the promised gameplay is now available, we acknowledge that delivery of some game elements has been delayed due to expansion of Star Citizen’s scope. This expansion is a result of the community’s declared desire to have the initial release version of the game developed to a much greater depth than contemplated originally upon start of the campaign. It is inherent to the nature of crowdfunding that such an adjustment to the project may occur. Ultimately, this will benefit all backers including yourself, since every backer will be receiving a much greater value for his/her pledge, but it may – as in this case – cause an extension of the delivery dates.

We acknowledge that some individual backers may find the additional wait undesirable. However, as per Sec. VII of the ToS, you did “acknowledge and agree that delivery as of such date is not a promise by RSI since unforeseen events may extend the development and/or production time.”

We’d like to point you to the significant gameplay which is now available; https://robertsspaceindustries.com/feature-list and if you haven’t already, we encourage you to download the installer from this url: https://robertsspaceindustries.com/download and patch up to play the latest version of the game.

Star Citizen is a project for gamers, by gamers. Delays and changes are always unfortunate, but in our case they are also one of the reasons the project is so special. By financing the project using crowd funding, our team is not beholden to a publisher who would insist we ship a game unfinished or broken to meet a particular date. Thanks to continued backing of our community, we have the needed creative freedom over the project, to create a unique game, and we feel the results, such as unparalleled immersion and fidelity, are already speaking for themselves!

We sincerely hope you enjoy the updates both current and future in the Star Citizen ‘Verse.

Thank you.
RSI Customer Service Management

I was wondering when I’d get the copy-paste e-mail, took a fair amount of time to be sure.

Star Citizen and you

Star Citizen, another result of nostalgia, together with that abomination Godus that Peter Molyneux vomited forth upon an unsuspecting world.

Now, I have no clue what the hell Wing Commander is, no earthly clue at all, I didn’t have a PC that could actually run anything as fun as video games back in those days.

The damn graphics card had at best sixteen colours, not entirely sure. It has been many a dark and horrible year since.

Now, do you remember the Ouya, that useless little shit box only the mentally deranged could love? Of course you don’t, it was shut down and its intangible assets were devoured by Razor, who wants to make a go at a mini-console themselves.

The Ouya was a kickstarter success, however, as it managed to rake in millions, promising a “revolution” and that it would “save the games”.

“Beware those who promises revolution, because in their hearts, the seek themselves your exploiter.”

Ouya was a miserable failure, it was released, but the end product was such a pile of garbage, not even Notch wanted to touch it, and that crazy Swede sure does want to touch it all.

Now, another contender is reach peak failure cascade, Star Citizen, the largest crowdfunding success in history, one hundred million US dollars, for a video game, designed and managed by a man, who had massive success with video games.

The last of those, from 1997, to bad it’s 2005, and also to bad that Origin Systems was the company who actually made the damn games, Chris Roberts was the designer, but one man does not make games like that, a company does.
Unless that one man is a complete lunatic genius, which Chris Roberts isn’t.

In between the last Wing Commander, Chris Roberts was the designed on Freelancer, which I actually own, and consider an excellent game, because I picked it up years after it was released, randomly, at some bargin bin, published for reasons unknown by Ubisoft, I think, possible Infogrames, who cares?

I dodged all the hype however, and that’s the important bit, without the hype, the promises and all that insanity, Freelancer’s a pretty good game, definitely a classic, but nothing else.

The storyline was a decent little space opera, nothing spectacular, and it was fun exploring all the cool little corners of the game.

So, what did Roberts do in between? He produced movies, as a producer. Good movies? Not really, Lord of War is pretty awesome, the rest are just ever so much meh.

But he caught the smell of the nostalgia trip we’ve seen in the last few years, ever since the success of Tim Schaefers “LET ME MAKE AN ADVENTURE GAME” campaign.

But Nostalgia is a siren song, just because nostalgia tells you something was cool, doesn’t mean it was, Command & Conquer Red Alert was cool, OpenRA isn’t that much fun to play, is it technically the same game? Yes, yes it is, the same game. Nostalgia just ain’t enough to generate a fun experience.

So, Star Citizen, 100 million US dollars, generated based on Nostalgia, with a man at the helm, who has squandered resources before, when he over-promised Freelancer.

So what is the problem with Star Citizen? Many:

1. Lack of transparency, compared to the only other meaningful point of comparison, Frontier Developments (Elite Dangerous), we know what Frontier spend their money on, who went on inside the company, the whole thing, because Frontier is a publicly traded company, and Cloud Imperium is a personal fiefdom of silence and obscurity.
2. Feature Creep, Chris Roberts recently promised the Star Citizen would contain birds.
3. Cult-like community, you know how bad League of Legends community is? Yeah, Star Citizen’s is waaay worse.
4. Sandi Gardiner.
5. General incompetence, to the point that they can’t do a live-stream properly.
6. Terms of Service fuckery, let’s change the TOS several times! That won’t backfire at all, yayz.
7. The sale of in-game assets to fund development.
8. Broken promises, a lot of broken promises.

So, join me over the next few days, as I go through each point, and mercilessly mock authority!

CHRISROBERTS