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Op Ed

Derek Smart - Interstellar Citizens.
"Previously, in Oct 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 $500K, but ended up with $2.1m on Kickstarter. More on this later. The original pitch was for a game that blended Wing Commander with Privateer, and 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 Nov 2014. Weíre still waiting.

As of this writing, the gameís crowd-funding has not only ballooned to an unprecedented $85m, but so has the scope. The entire bulk of the crowd-funding, after sailing past that initial $2.1m 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 Iím saying thereís anything wrong with that; after all, thatís what raising funds for a project is about: selling. But itís a double-edged sword. And usually, if youíre dealing with seasoned and experienced investors, or even publishers, if theyíre not convinced or even interested, youíre not getting the money. And if you do get it, that money comes with strings - usually pretty long and taut strings. With crowd-funding, no such strings exist, and you can pretty much do what you want. And thatís 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 ďgameĒ to play them with. In short, the result is that you have ships youíve bought, with no game to play them with."

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79 Replies. 4 pages. Viewing page 1.
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79. Re: Op Ed Jul 6, 2015, 06:08 peteham
 
This quote from Derek's blog post really sums it all up rather nicely:
This game, as has been pitched, will never get made. Ever. There isnít a single publisher or developer on this planet, who could build this game as pitched, let alone for anything less than $150m. The original vision which I backed in 2012? Yes, that was totally doable. This new vision? Not a chance.

Best case scenario in my view is that they cut away the absolutely INSANE amount of feature creep and try to salvage squadron 42, the project I'm sure most of us thought we were backing in the first place. But the far more likely outcome seems to be a broken mess of disparate modules. That is of course assuming we ever get to see any sort of "final" deliverable at all.
 
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78. Re: Op Ed Jul 6, 2015, 01:08 harlock
 
shihonage wrote on Jul 5, 2015, 23:22:
I disagree with the implication that game developers aren't allowed to have controversial personalities.

anyone is allowed to have a controversial personality just as anyone can call out anyone else for being an asshole

protip: nothing is true. everything is permitted
 
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77. Re: Op Ed Jul 6, 2015, 00:39 Slashman
 
shihonage wrote on Jul 5, 2015, 23:22:
What I really don't care for much, is all the polite devs spouting generic PR garbage because they're afraid of upsetting their friends in the community, or afraid for their "job security".

When you have a publisher over you, you really can't just say whatever you want.

That said, I prefer direct honesty about something versus BS PR speak.

That still doesn't mean that Derek Smart has the right balance in dealing with the community.

I can't really argue with his Star Citizen observations though. I still don't think they really know how they are going to fit it all together.
 
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76. Re: Op Ed Jul 5, 2015, 23:22 shiho
 
I disagree with the implication that game developers aren't allowed to have controversial personalities.

The more people we have like Derek Smart and Peter Molyneux and that Fez guy, the better. They may be pompous or pretentious in some ways, but they add diversity and color to the community. In one way or another, they speak their mind and express their emotions about things.

Most importantly, they have passion about their projects.

What I really don't care for much, is all the polite devs spouting generic PR garbage because they're afraid of upsetting their friends in the community, or afraid for their "job security".
 
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75. Re: Op Ed Jul 5, 2015, 20:33  Quboid 
 
Kosumo wrote on Jul 5, 2015, 19:39:
Wow, This post on the forums sums up some big questons.

Some of the defenders on that thread sound like cult members:
Chris Roberts is too self conscious to do something that embarrasses himself and he's basically Star Citizen so no way he will let it fail so I'm not worried.

Don't worry folks, the Chairman won't let it fail.

At this rate they'll be offering virtual kool-aid, yours for a $250 donation.
 
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74. Re: Op Ed Jul 5, 2015, 19:58 Flatline
 
Kosumo wrote on Jul 5, 2015, 18:32:
I would have like to have got an Arena Commander review out of Derek Smart before he was chased off Cry

Yeah I'd kind of like to have a zero punctuation series of Derek Smart reviews/rants on games. The man knows how to rant. I'd watch/read the shit out of that.
 
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73. Re: Op Ed Jul 5, 2015, 19:39 Kosumo
 
Wow, This post on the forums sums up some big questons.  
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72. Re: Op Ed Jul 5, 2015, 18:32 Kosumo
 
I would have like to have got an Arena Commander review out of Derek Smart before he was chased off Cry  
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71. Re: Op Ed Jul 5, 2015, 17:33 harlock
 
dsmart wrote on Jul 5, 2015, 15:47:
Have at it. I'm out.

now grab a tissue and clean yourself up
 
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70. removed Jul 5, 2015, 16:42 Krovven
 
* REMOVED *
This comment was deleted on Jul 6, 2015, 07:07.
 
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69. Re: Op Ed Jul 5, 2015, 15:47  dsmart 
 
Krovven wrote on Jul 5, 2015, 15:35:
dsmart wrote on Jul 5, 2015, 11:29:
I just stopped posting because tbh, I grew tired of getting attacked all the time. It was fun back in the day, but apparently some people simply don't grow up.

This is fucking rich coming from you. You can't make it through a single forum thread without being a rude prick to someone that gave honest and accurate criticism of your games.

I have zero interest in SC and don't give a rats ass about Chris Roberts. But here's the thing. You can go around trashing Chris Roberts in articles and you can make glib comments about Freelancer; fact still remains he has at least made some good, fun and playable games in his life.

You sir have not, and nobody expects you ever will.


You didn't read the article, right? It's OK though; a lot of people can't understand the written word. Especially if it's more than one paragraph long.

What I used to do when I was younger, was to grab a dictionary, then read slowly. Any time I ran into a big word, I'd look it up.

Nowadays, you don't even have to flip pages. Just have dictionary.com open in a browser window, and you're good to go.

Attacking me is patently meaningless, and for as long as you've been around, and doing just that, you should realize that by now. You achieve nothing.

Have at it. I'm out.
 
Avatar 9141
 



Game developers are just human beings who happen to make games for a living. If you want to hold us up to higher standards of conduct, then go ahead
...but don't be surprised if we don't uphold them
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68. removed Jul 5, 2015, 15:35 Krovven
 
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67. Re: Op Ed Smart on Star Citizen Jul 5, 2015, 15:21 eRe4s3r
 
yuastnav wrote on Jul 5, 2015, 10:40:
eRe4s3r wrote on Jul 5, 2015, 09:46:
Bub wrote on Jul 5, 2015, 08:32:
Near impenetrable user interfaces is part and parcel of any space sim above arcade quality.

No, it's part of a shitty game design by someone that has zero understanding of usability guidelines. Any visual interface can be made easy to understand. Failing to do so, is the direct failure of the person designing that GUI and not "mark of a great sim"

While an understandable and intuitive GUI is great, it's not always possible to have one. I mean, just look at the DCS games where people spend days figuring out the controls. And it's based on real, military vehicles. I don't think someone would design a combat vehicle with bad controls. It's that complex because it needs to be.
So are civilian aircraft and space sims.

It's incredibly difficult to design a good UI.

I think DCS has great user interface, graphical and otherwise It's even 1:1 to reality if you have the right hardware. "All" you need to do is learn the actual weapons platform and how it was designed to be used. DCS itself also has elements of course, but since it's a SIM, the sim is at it's best when I don't have to interact with anything but the plane I am flying.

But that is why I said *GUI* and not *UI* Graphical user interface elements are what interacts with the player, (UI) controls are what player uses to interact with your game. And DCS has a proper tutorial that teaches you all elements of (certain) planes. That is part of GUI. As the tutorial has to tell you stuff, show you stuff and react to you failing to do that stuff. In DCS the tutorial teaches you literally how to fly a plane if you are patient enough. That is imo the sign of a great SIM where people who made it really gave a damn.

A bad GUI is when you have a trading building space simulation (X Rebirth) and you can't queue orders for your freighters in the trading overview without redoing the same 6 step process over and over again and when CANCELING 1 of these orders requires you to cancel ALL of them. Imo it is a false argument when someone says that a GUI is hard. No, a GUI is not hard, someone just has to design and polish it for usability. If all you do is go by a checklist of features and implement ways players can execute these functions, without care for usability then the result is a shitty GUI.

Ps.: DCS has however a TERRIBLE rebind screen and not because it's not "polished", as anyone with a Saitek joystick knows ;p Certain stuff is simply messed up because of windows controller handling being a mess, hence you fiddle around with DCS controls in your profiler app and just map whatever default key is to some function on a joystick.

This comment was edited on Jul 5, 2015, 15:30.
 
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66. Re: Op Ed Smart on Star Citizen Jul 5, 2015, 14:46 eRe4s3r
 
dsmart wrote on Jul 5, 2015, 10:05:
eRe4s3r wrote on Jul 5, 2015, 09:46:
Bub wrote on Jul 5, 2015, 08:32:
Near impenetrable user interfaces is part and parcel of any space sim above arcade quality.

No, it's part of a shitty game design by someone that has zero understanding of usability guidelines. Any visual interface can be made easy to understand. Failing to do so, is the direct failure of the person designing that GUI and not "mark of a great sim"

Said the guy who has probably never played any simulation, nor has any inkling as to what GUI means. Love those buzz words, eh?

Whatever man, whatever.

I will hold this hilarious comment in honor for eternity ,)

Also that you actually believe gamers Bluesnews do not know what a GUI is or what usability guidelines are... speaks volumes about the magnitude of your ego, and the reason people here consider you their own personal bridge troll.

The hilarious part being that I actually talked about X Rebirth here.. but whatever man, whatever.
 
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65. Re: Op Ed Jul 5, 2015, 12:48 Scheherazade
 
Kajetan <<

AC as it is now is anti-advertising.

It's imba and is in disarray.

I can accept bugs in an alpha, but not having good gameplay is a really big deal for me.

If it had good gameplay, I wouldn't care about disconnects and matchmaking - because I'd be eager to reconnect and keep playing. As it stands, disconnects and matchmaking don't bother me either way because I'm not compelled to log in. How the hell am I supposed to get hype and donate more $ over a game that chases me away (with ibma mechanics) whenever I go to play it?

God damn. Sigh. AC is so close to being a great space DM sandbox. It has all the parts, and no one is sorting it out. Bugs the hell out of me. They could take 10 years to finisg the PU for all I care, if I could just go dm in AC to my heart's content. All I care about is the combat anyways. That part I could have now and be happy.

(Which, BTW, was the same feeling I had with the BCruiser games. Gameplay was not compelling.)


L'sigh. Let's just see what happens.

-scheherazade
 
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64. Re: Op Ed Jul 5, 2015, 12:32 Luke
 
Kajetan wrote on Jul 5, 2015, 11:39:
Scheherazade wrote on Jul 5, 2015, 10:45:

What concerns me is:

1) CIGs refusal to balance and tune what they have released so far. As it stands, AC gameplay is bad, and it only takes some XML tweaks to bring it up to snuff, and they refuse to take care of it. It's such low hanging fruit that people on the forums modded it to sort out the imba issues.
And if they do that ... people will complain that they spend ressources on this instead of "finishing" something else. CIG is in a position where they cant please everyone at the same time. Too many people want too many things. Will CIG fulfill all expectations? No, of course not. Someone WILL be dissapointed.

2) Too many cooks. 500 people is a lot of dough. Even if they make only 40 k per year (a pittance), that's 20M per year. Plus development is a few years in already. 85m isn't a lot of money for that size of a group. I have no doubt that they can eventually make it happen - just not with 85m going at this pace with this many people. At this pace, they need to secure more funding - which means solid and fun demos (point #1) and more milestones launched, even if not polished.
This will probably happen. But ... it is GOOD that this will happen, because otherwise they will polish modules and gameplay features till eternity, never to release anything. They have to make a commercial release soon. First, to generate more income from actual game sales to people who havent donated and second, to generate more donations, because they had a commercial release, proving they can deliver.

Will it be good game? I dont know. We will see

to generate more donations

DO they even do ANYTHING them self , or is it all : donate , donate , donate devs are getting so fucking lazy with all those fundraising...jezz Clown 's
 
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63. Re: Op Ed Jul 5, 2015, 11:39 Kajetan
 
Scheherazade wrote on Jul 5, 2015, 10:45:

What concerns me is:

1) CIGs refusal to balance and tune what they have released so far. As it stands, AC gameplay is bad, and it only takes some XML tweaks to bring it up to snuff, and they refuse to take care of it. It's such low hanging fruit that people on the forums modded it to sort out the imba issues.
And if they do that ... people will complain that they spend ressources on this instead of "finishing" something else. CIG is in a position where they cant please everyone at the same time. Too many people want too many things. Will CIG fulfill all expectations? No, of course not. Someone WILL be dissapointed.

2) Too many cooks. 500 people is a lot of dough. Even if they make only 40 k per year (a pittance), that's 20M per year. Plus development is a few years in already. 85m isn't a lot of money for that size of a group. I have no doubt that they can eventually make it happen - just not with 85m going at this pace with this many people. At this pace, they need to secure more funding - which means solid and fun demos (point #1) and more milestones launched, even if not polished.
This will probably happen. But ... it is GOOD that this will happen, because otherwise they will polish modules and gameplay features till eternity, never to release anything. They have to make a commercial release soon. First, to generate more income from actual game sales to people who havent donated and second, to generate more donations, because they had a commercial release, proving they can deliver.

Will it be good game? I dont know. We will see

This comment was edited on Jul 5, 2015, 11:56.
 
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62. Re: Op Ed Jul 5, 2015, 11:38 harlock
 
holy shit... look whos back

taking time out from his long walks around the lakes with his dogs, to come talk to us, WOW, we are blessed
 
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61. Re: Op Ed Jul 5, 2015, 11:34 descender
 
Sometimes it's better to simply not say anything. You have admitted in interviews in the past that you admit you can't change opinions, yet you continue to try in the vein of a 12-year old troll. :p Do you see any other successful dev out there responding to every negative opinion about their company? It's called acting like a professional, every opinion does not warrant a response. You give credence where none is due.

Even in this thread, totally benign conversation going on and your attitude towards eraser says it all. You have now come at 2 posters for basically no reason. If you stopped pretending like you know better than everyone, and trying to rub their face in it... maybe your life would be less stressful.

This comment was edited on Jul 5, 2015, 11:43.
 
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60. Re: Op Ed Jul 5, 2015, 11:32  dsmart 
 
descender wrote on Jul 5, 2015, 11:26:
Imagine if there were 300+ people, and almost $100m to play with.

Yeah, unfortunately the way you (still) aggressively interact with the community at large pretty much guarantees you'll never get that level of support.

And I do really mean "unfortunately" because the concept behind your games has always been fabulous... they just never seem to get there.

Oh, you mean kissing ass, and allowing myself to be abused, without saying anything, is the way to financial success? Got it. I must be doing it all wrong then.
 
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Game developers are just human beings who happen to make games for a living. If you want to hold us up to higher standards of conduct, then go ahead
...but don't be surprised if we don't uphold them
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