Kickstar: Star Citizen Gets Supplementary Kickstarter

By Jim Rossignol on October 19th, 2012 at 4:00 pm.


So it turns out that Chris Robert’s space-faring adventure gave their native pledge-o-matic a bit of trouble, with it falling over and stuff, and so they’ve decided (despite having raised a huge chunk of cash through their pre-order thing already) to supplement proceedings with a Kickstarter. They’re trying to raise $500,000 through the big daddy of crowd-funding, and they already have $100k. Star Citizen, as we explained in great detail here, is a concept for reviving the space game from the man who made Wing Commander. And it’s looking fantastic.

Obligatory Kickstarter video below (you’ve already seen most of it.)

So will you pledge? Have you pledged already?

Gosh, we’re ticking off a huge, figurative list of things-that-might-be-Kickstarted, aren’t we? There’s not quite enough space game ones yet, though because *COUGH* Homeworld *COUGH*. What was that? I thought I heard someone say that a Homeworld Kickstarter was about the most obvious move in the world for Relic. Hey look, here’s their Twitter account. Don’t tell them I sent you.

/Whistles

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68 Comments »

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  1. NeuralNet says:

    I so want to see this succeed! Finally a next gen title that uses modern hardware to really drive the immersion levels up a notch!

    • dE says:

      So do I. But I’m a bit sceptical because it sounds a tad too ambitious.

      • NeuralNet says:

        Agreed, but the latest version of CryEngine 3 will be doing a lot of the work for them. Dynamic tessellation alone should save a lot of time and money that can be put to use in other areas.

        It’s probably the multiplayer aspect of the game that’s the most critical feature at the moment.

        • hamburger_cheesedoodle says:

          Yeah, CryEngine 3 is doing a world of good for MechWarrior Online! Who doesn’t love getting 4 fps on midrange hardware in an average looking game?

          • socrate says:

            the Cryengine3 was always and will always be a really bad engine just like the game it was created for…alots of eye candy with next to no gameplay involved….of all the kickstarter imo this as to be the worst of them all.

            Oh and i really don’t get why people get hyped just because of the name of the dude…i mean he did 1 good game that is old and was milked to death in a genre where there was never actual competition and that game are either extremely bad or good and never went past that.

            But people today are a bunch of moron today and throw money at kickstarter instead of actually doing any research on the subject and just “HOPE” it will lead to something good…its a very stupid way of financing stuff that lead to so few worker getting job when you could finance stuff that would cost the same to start and are more beneficial for the place they are built and more ambitious.

            its also funny how people always want more money but they have no sense of saving and get load of debt and take no care of their own financial future in mind till its way to late,yet they shove money into someone that could but will not finance himself for some unknown reason.

          • NeuralNet says:

            Those faults lie with the developers, not CryEngine 3. Looking at the visual fidelity of MO, there’s no reason why performance should be bad, so they obviously have some issues.

            The same happened with Nexuiz when it was released. You can complain and make anecdotal notes all you want but that’s all they are at the end of the day.

          • Caiman says:

            @socrate I rarely see such a pile of shit in a single post, well done.

      • Crainey says:

        It is ambitious and it is possible, but I would question what is possible within the budget they have. All that depth is well and good but hopefully they don’t get carried away and neglect quantity of content, especially if they want a competent multiplayer component.

      • Dark Nexus says:

        “Why, that’s not Chris Roberts at all! It’s old man Molyneux in a rubber mask!”

        • zbmott says:

          “And I would’ve gotten away with it, too, if it hadn’t been for you meddling donors!”

    • Slinkyboy says:

      I can’t wait either!!

    • RagingLion says:

      Have people heard the rumour that Valve’s hard at work on a big space sim project at the moment? I though that was very interesting for a number of reasons and probably pretty exciting if true.

      • NeuralNet says:

        I wasn’t aware of this?! Would be awesome if true, space sims have huge potential, especially if modern hardware is embraced.

  2. InternetBatman says:

    $5 to ship a card outside the US? I used to work for a book shipping company and I know it’s nowhere near that for Europe and parts of Asia.

    I really don’t like this effort on general grounds, the whole thing strikes me as a bit shady and less fair than the usual crowd-funding.

    • MrLebanon says:

      agreed. Didn’t back because of that. May not be a lot of money but i’d rather not spend 5 bucks from some ambiguous piece of paper/cardboard/whatever

      and heck.. im in Canada -_-

    • Tim says:

      There is an all digital tier that doesn’t have the citizen card…

      • Sheng-ji says:

        Not for my tier there isn’t! Shrugs, it’s an extra $5 to the game so fine, whatever.

    • sharkh20 says:

      And here I thought I was donating to donate, not to get stuff.

    • Mithent says:

      I emailed them about this, actually. They confirmed that there should be a digital-only option, and indeed although when I pledged originally there was a mandatory $5 fee it’s now not obligatory during the payment process – from the main site, anyway. Not sure about Kickstarter.

    • squareking says:

      Kickstarter and Amazon both shave a certain percentage from everything, so they’re probably just covering asses.

  3. Screamer says:

    Shouldn’t nVidia or ATI pitch in seeing as this will most likely kickstart a graphics..eeer race and sell gigapixels of cards again?

    Above statement might be too stary-eyed naive of me!

    • MrLebanon says:

      I dont think ATI/AMD is going to be throwing too much at this risk…. they’re last quarter was terrible and they’re announcing 15% of the company being laid off

      With that in mind too. Nvidia doesn’t need to be too pushy since AMD’s struggling to keep up

    • kaffis says:

      Also, judging from my time with MWO, the engine is much more CPU dependent than GPU-bound. Although, the sim market is definitely a good one to pitch Surround and Eyefinity to, so perhaps there’s still an opportunity for them.

      Of course, if the Oculus Rift catches a big chunk of that market (sim fans willing to shell out cash to give them a more immersive experience), that could stagnate demand for increasing GPU horsepower unless the Rift quickly ramps up plans for higher resolutions.

    • Premium User Badge

      Simplisto says:

      I’ve pledged, but now I’m concerned about whether my laptop will be able to handle it.

      I just presumed as it’s a space sim I wouldn’t have to worry…

      I have a Dell studio XPS with:
      Intel® Core™ i7 CPU Q 820
      ATI Mobility Radeon HD 4670
      4GB RAM

      I used to be quite tech-savvy until I ditched IT for Graphic Design. I have no idea where this sits next to the GTX 460 and GTX 670 they mention in their FAQ.

      • Premium User Badge

        Simplisto says:

        Not well, it seems.

        http://www.videocardbenchmark.net/video_lookup.php

        Can anyone speculate on how my system might hold up in comparison?

        • NeuralNet says:

          Not well I’m afraid. The 4670 is a DX10 part, so it may be able to run the game but from what I can gather from the tech demo it appears to heavily use DX11 features, which may mean it’s a DX11 title only.

          It may be a bit assuring to bear in mind that the tech demo was running on a GTX 670 and the game itself is due to be out in 2014, so you have plenty of time to save for an upgrade.

          Edit: Correction, the game will play on DX9 cards, but as for the performance I’d still say that your card may not meet the minimum requirements.

  4. ReV_VAdAUL says:

    You have to smile at John writing an article about the dangers of Kickstarter and then a few hours later Jim posting about how amazing a KS project looks. Still, while I don’t really care for space games it has gotten a lot of people excited and I hope for their sake it comes to fruition.

  5. Mr. Mister says:

    Well, damn. The kickstarter fatigue this will add up to won’t help me see Distance funded…

  6. Low Life says:

    So how’s this going to work with the original crowdfunding site? They originally asked for $2,000,000, but what if their own site stops at the current ~$1,000,000, everyone has selected to get refund if the project fails and Kickstarter succeeds at $500,000? What about all the other possible combinations? My brain is confused, and objects giving them my money.

    • secuda says:

      Agree, allthough i donated 125 dollars i am still confused if they failed to meet their goal at 500K? do that mean that they will not shipp to me?

    • RakeShark says:

      From what I understand, people were asking for the Kickstarter alternative. They do plan on connecting the Kickstarter pledge to the main site/RSI account. Instead of splitting the $2 Million down the middle, they opted for a more reasonable quarter, $500k. The main site’s pledge fund is still going, and anything extra made on the Kickstarter will just further add to the total. At the end of the day, it’s nice to have options, especially for Europeans. IF the Kickstarter option fails, by that time the main RSI site’s fundraising push will have been already over for a week, so you can gauge success/failure when that moment reaches.

      • Low Life says:

        The problem is, in my scenario they would be left with $500,000 (a quarter of the original target) and the promise to deliver each Kickstarter backer the game.

        Although as you said, the original project ends earlier, so they’d probably just cancel the Kickstarter project if it came to that. Let’s hope it doesn’t.

  7. Chizu says:

    I’d held off kickstarting anything so far.
    But I went ahead and pledged for this, Strike Suit Zero and Distance. Since those genuinely appeal to my interests :v

  8. mwoody says:

    Alright, someone please explain to me why this is getting people excited. Is it just that there’s a guy involved who did some beloved old games? It’s a microtransaction-focused EVE.

    • wccrawford says:

      Yup, that’s exactly it. At the release of the last trailer, I stated that I wanted to see some gameplay, instead of just cinematics.

      The unanimous response was downvotes and “Haven’t you played a space sim before?” Apparently you just need to put some ships in space and it’s all good. They don’t actually care how the game plays.

      I’ve played enough of them to know that they are not all the same.

      • MrLebanon says:

        if it’s anything like X3 then i’d rather watch paint dry

    • Premium User Badge

      Simplisto says:

      A microtransaction-focused EVE would be right up my street since I don’t have the money and gaming time to spend in a subscription game. It seems like they’re also aiming for something a little deeper in regards to solo play. I’m not confident they’ll succeed in that, but I think it’ll be entertaining enough to be worth the pledge.

    • Premium User Badge

      FriendlyFire says:

      It plays absolutely *nothing* like EVE, which reading about the game for five seconds (tops) would’ve told you already. Have you ever played EVE and a Roberts space sim?

      Most people would be content with him recreating Wing Commander or Freelancer. He can’t really miss the mark.

      • mwoody says:

        You’ve never played the game, either. EVE plays the way it does due to realities of network latency with large numbers of player in one place, not because they want it to feel like piloting a drunken whale. He can’t make it respond like his single player games just because he waves his hands.

        If this was a single player game, I’d be excited. As it is, it’s an underfunded (even the best kickstarters produce a fraction of what a good MMO costs to develop) and over-promising MMO with a single-player tutorial bolted on, and all of it focused on squeezing you for more microtransaction dollars.

        • Zyrusticae says:

          Er, you really think EVE couldn’t have a different combat model 9 years after it was originally released because of technological limitations?

          Besides that, you’ve completely missed the mark. The game’s multiplayer components are heavily instanced, with no more than 60-100 players in a given instance at a time (as opposed to EVE where you can have over a thousand ships in the same cluster). A proper space sim with physics is more than possible with modern technology.

    • peschi says:

      eve doesnt have spacecombat. eve just requires you to click a target and orbit it within your weapon range so you can fire your weapons. It doesnt have any dogfights. Star Citizen will.

  9. Arglebargle says:

    Auteur theory strikes again! The guy’s name was on the box of games we liked when we were young: Everything of his must be great!

    Never having had that good an impression of Chris Roberts, I polled some of my Origin sources, and got things like, ‘Always more interested in movies than games’, ‘Would not work with him again’, and ‘Not that creative’. His Hollywood tenure is not very impressive. And they appear to have lost money (the Hollywood failure kiss of death!).

    There was also the intimation that he got a lot of Microsoft money to deliver a game, and ended up making a terrible movie (watch Wing Commander if you dare!).

    Of course, this pitch sounds good on paper, but can the early success be revisited, or is the more recent evidence more likely? I personally don’t think Roberts is Hitchcock or Kurosawa.

    • TimMc says:

      If you look at his work, no Chris Roberts is not creative. He does, however, make really fun space sims.

      Which is what I want, and why I pledged. I expect to get my monies worth simply on alpha access.

      • kaffis says:

        Exactly. I’m not looking for a ton of creativity from Chris Roberts. He doesn’t dream up new stuff. However, his one prevailing dream that he’s delivered iteratively is awesome, and I’ve loved playing it every time it’s been offered to me.

        So what I need out of Chris Roberts is the same elements he’s always had, with more ambition, scale, and scope than he’s been able to deliver before. And he’s got those in spades.

    • adamsorkin says:

      I don’t think he claimed to be Hitchcock or Kurosawa. Saw enough in his GDC talk/prototype demonstration that I’ve certainly got $30 to risk on the guy who made some of my early favorites, though.

    • Arglebargle says:

      That’s why I mentioned auteur theory: Some folks view the head guy on a project as the driving creative force, putting his vision into action. With a big involved production, sometimes that’s not the case. Believe me Tabula Rasa wasn’t released in Garriott’s envisioned form, and MOO3 was pretty far from the original concepts too.

      Roberts gets all this credit for these games, which it was the work of a large dedicated team. With the Wing Commanders he mostly did the cinematics. It’s reported he did the original concept of Privateer, but didn’t produce. And that he left directing Freelancer while it was in production, though he ‘consulted’ afterwards. But I see him getting credit as the creator/director/producer of both of those too.

      For a guy who really wanted to make movies, his Hollywood resume is not very spectacular. But now he is the prodigal son returned.

      Not a huge loss individually if it turns out badly, I guess. So…good luck with that….

  10. Yosharian says:

    $30 is a lot compared to some of the other projects I’ve looked at, but boy am I tempted to back this one.

  11. Premium User Badge

    Simplisto says:

    I’d like to pledge a bit of cash, but I’m still a little confused about the rewards.

    As I understand it, the RSI Aurora will be a basic ship; does this mean it will also be the starter ship for those who buy the game on release? It seems a shame if pledger’s don’t get something a little fancier.

    Also, the only difference between some of the pledges seem to be the citizenship title, and I have no idea if and how this effect gameplay.

    I would have pledged ages ago if they managed to communicate exactly what it was I’d be getting.

    • Premium User Badge

      Simplisto says:

      Another thing is bothering me. How much are they planning to sell the game for once released? I don’t want to pay £25 before I know what I’m getting into just for the honour of being a beta tester…

      • Flobulon says:

        ” Like Guild Wars 2, the basic game will be $60, but for the early backers we are offering the entry tier at $40.”

        So looks like if you pledge now it’s half price on Kickstarter.

        • Premium User Badge

          Simplisto says:

          In other words, I’d be saving £18.73 – not bad, but for how long will they charge this (rather large) price of £37/$60 after launch?

          It’s a hefty price to pay for a game that hasn’t been made yet. I tend to pay no more than £20 for a PC games on disk and even less for digital copies.

          I almost wonder if it’d be worth paying the extra money to make sure you’re not buying a dog.

        • Premium User Badge

          Simplisto says:

          Screw it. Pledged.

          £18.74 for a game I have very limited knowledge of. I must be mad.

          • FreezerBag says:

            I feel the same, but I pledged anyway. I did’t even like Wing Commander!

          • Premium User Badge

            Simplisto says:

            I haven’t even played it. Or Freespace. Or Freespace 2. Tried X3 but couldn’t get into it.

            …I liked the ‘Star Wars Galaxies: Jump To Lightspeed’ though… Hmm…

            Should I buy Freespace 2 folks? Should I also get a joystick?

          • The Tupper says:

            Can’t remember much about Freespace 2, to be honest, but trace memories tell me it was brilliant. Must play it again.

            As for joystick, I find my XBox 360 pad does what I need it to in flying games.

  12. tkioz says:

    I backed it,hey SPACE SIM, been donkey’s since anyone made one of those, so well worth it.

    • Premium User Badge

      jrodman says:

      They do tend to get in the way, what with the kicking and not moving.

  13. adamsorkin says:

    Still a little confused on what cash enables what, but I’m happy to see that the current FAQ’s name the single-player Squadron 42 component is the initial deliverable if funding falls short, rather than an afterthought.

    • FreezerBag says:

      Well I’m completely bewildered about what the different reward tiers give you. It all seems a bit odd to me.

      • kaffis says:

        More specific info is due Monday. They’re holding off while they get the pledge upgrading system working, so they’re not inundated with manual requests to adjust people’s pledges when they release the additional information and people decide they want to upgrade to get something that sounds cooler than they were initially expecting.

    • FL-MiniMe says:

      If you’re referring to the lower 3 tiers (shows as 30, 35, 40 USD for me), the only difference is title, which I’d think is just aesthetics. Basically, they’re the same package, but the lowest tier is limited supply so if you can’t afford to fork over $40 you can still get the lower 2 if they have any slots left. When the $30 runs out, you can then only choose $35 or $40. As of now the $30 is sold out. It doesn’t *look* like the 35 and 40 are limited supply.

  14. Chandos says:

    Obligatory call for someone to make a new Freespace game, KS or no KS.

    • Premium User Badge

      tomeoftom says:

      Yeah, I want another Freespace so badly.

      • Papa_Dragon says:

        If this project succeeds, im almost 100% sure, we will see FS3 in the future.

        • luckystriker says:

          Which is why I kickstarted $40 to Star Citizen. It’s not so much that I’m particularly excited for this game, I want this kickstarter to succeed and show developers that Space Sims can be financially viable.

  15. Lawful Evil says:

    Err, Jim, I admit I’m not much interested in this Squadron 42 game, or whatever it’s name is. On the other hand, the HOMEWORLD… well I don’t seem to be able to find anything on the Relic Twitter soo… could you please do the job of finding the interesting information about it for me (us)? I’d be so grateful!