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Star Citizen crowdfunding hits $25 million after most lucrative month to date

Monday, 28th October 2013 00:38 GMT By Brenna Hillier

Star Citizen’s crowdfunding campaign shows no signs of slowing down, and in fact accelerated this last month to shoot past its $25 million goal.

Just last weekend, Star Citizen hit $23 million and announced its latest stretch goal, so it made $2 million in just about one week. In a new Letter from the Chairman, creator Chris Roberts said October is the space sim’s “single biggest month for crowd funding yet”.

By hitting $25 million, fans have ensured that Cloud Imperium Games can run a much larger alpha test than initially projected, which should result in a stronger finished game; 50,000 extra tester slots will be added to the alpha.

The next stretch goal is $27 million, which will unlock a Banu Merchantman; like the $23 million Xi’An stretch goal, this will result in a more unique experience for players who choose this role.

When Star Citizen’s initial crowdfunding campaign ended, it netted a record-breaking $6.2 million. Roberts Space Industries’ decision to keep its coffers open has clearly paid off.

Thanks, Ausgamers.

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31 Comments

  1. pcbros

    This game has the potential to be epic! We need a shift in Space Flight sims :)

    #1 1 year ago
  2. TMRNetShark

    @1

    What happens when it’s just nice to look at and doesn’t play well or isn’t fun?

    I will be cautious about this game. I will only buy it when I see some actual lengthy gameplay… not staged scenes.

    #2 1 year ago
  3. pcbros

    @2 – What happens? The same thing that happens to all games that fail to deliver, they fail.

    The game has potential though.

    #3 1 year ago
  4. m2stech

    DELETE

    #4 1 year ago
  5. TMRNetShark

    @3

    I’m just uneasy about this. It just seems like utter moneygrubbing on RSI’s part. Even if you don’t think that’s the case, that’s alright.

    They are focusing on making these ultra high poly ships that look amazing. They keep showing us these spectacles but we have not seen one ounce of real space combat. Sure, the game is more than a year away and there is plenty of time to showcase it.

    Like I said, I will be cautious.

    #5 1 year ago
  6. TheWulf

    @5

    That’s exactly how I feel. Every time they go up by a million USD after only having shown the equivalent of sexy car commercials, alarm bells go off in my brain, accompanied by neon signs that read ‘con of the decade.’

    I guess it’s just my fields of interest (anthropology and psychology), but I look at this and I’m amazed how easy it is to take a person in with marketing and advertisements alone. We’ve not seen anything to even prove that the game even exists beyond a few toys which a decent development house could put together in a couple of days.

    And then I look at some of the stretch goals. One million USD for a fast travel system. No one questions or thinks about how silly it is to say that a fast travel system costs a million USD to implement.

    That’s why it’s so impressive.

    It’s one of the greatest feats of social engineering I’ve ever seen. It’s on par with WoW (which is just a series of repetitive tasks and reward schedules masquerading as a game). I don’t know. I worry about humanity sometimes, I guess?

    Sometimes… we just don’t look all that bright. I’m genuinely surprised by the lack of caution surrounding this.

    #6 1 year ago
  7. TMRNetShark

    @6

    I remember, on another one of these posts about Star Citizen… I had claimed that having fast travel as a stretch goal was stupid. Some user pointed out “Oh, they are going to improve EVERYTHING about the game with that extra million dollars.”

    Yeah? We don’t even have a baseline yet. No evidence of game play that suggests that there will be improvement. Just “Hey, look at all these shiny things!” and BAM… you donated $40.

    At least the beautiful thing about these crowd funded games is that you don’t have to ever risk your money. The game is funded… if it flops, I still have my $40 to spend on a real game.

    #7 1 year ago
  8. DSB

    Since there’s very little to be cautious of or optimistic about, the rational thing would be to wait and see until there’s anything truly representative on display.

    It’s pathetic to say that simply because a game is pretty to look at, it must be a con. Some people get insecure when other people are succesful, and shame on Roberts Space Industries for being popular, succesful and compelling enough to get people onboard, but I really don’t see how funding an (in mainstream terms) overlooked genre is somehow bad for gamers.

    It’s the biggest, most glaring middlefinger that has been presented to the publisher system yet. At the very least, that deserves a pat on the back.

    Every game is a risk, and this is no different. It’s a bigger risk than most, by force of sheer scale. We’ve already seen companies like Double Fine fuck it up, so there’s every reason to be aware of that risk.

    But whining about the graphics being too pretty or the fundraising being too succesful is just pathetic. Some people are so miserable and petty that everybody else has to struggle too. Oh hai, TheWulf!

    Fuck that noise. Tentative congrats to RSI. Don’t fuck up.

    #8 1 year ago
  9. aussigamer

    wow so much hate,
    just want to point out that this game is ‘being’ made, it is not alpha or pre alpha it is still just lines of code.

    There is no game yet to see because it is still being made. the reason people are donating is because they want this game made. Having no publishers or investors means there are no rush jobs or cost cutting for the sake of profits. If you did it the other way you would get EVE online.

    Your are right it doesnt take 1 million to create a fast transport system. but it does take 25 million to produce the game though so that 1 million is spread out to all aspects of the game.

    the stretch goals are just perks or milestones they are arbitrary.

    the big picture is Chris Roberts (a proven game designer) is creating a game which has an untapped target audience, and because it doesnt have investors or publishers it requires crowdfunding/donations

    #9 1 year ago
  10. yeoung

    Every time I think they’ve hit the roof on this thing it just keeps blasting through stretch goals. While I agree with the sentiment of a cool mil for a fast travel system is a tad odd, calling it a feat of social engineering seems a bit aggrandizing. Surely the scope of the project has soared quite a bit beyond its original intent. Consequently, it’s understandable that the stretch goals will become increasingly trivial.

    That said, I do believe a point has been reached wherein additional funding would offer little to no significant improvements in terms of gameplay or general experience. Though I guess in a way it is quite fitting for a space sim to be recieving astronomical amounts of (crowd)funding.

    No doubt it’ll be interesting too see the final product and its commercial/critical reception.

    #10 1 year ago
  11. pcbros

    I wonder how people would be reacting if this was a console game…

    Usually we don’t get many videos and screens a year before a game’s release. COD for example wasn’t shown until May of this year.

    Atleast we are getting videos and screens this early into development. I will wait and see myself but I am very hopeful.

    #11 1 year ago
  12. fearmonkey

    You all that are negative about the game just don’t get it….

    if EA and others would have had great space sims out over the last 5 to 10 years, they probably wouldn’t have had near the amount raised.

    The reason is you have Chris Roberts, who has quite the gaming background with some of the most beloved space games ever making this game. Fans of the genre are desperate for a great killer space sim, and the current publishers have let their IP languish while releasing cod 1, cod 2, cod copy 1, cod copy 2, shooter #4324234, etc.

    If this was anyone other than Chris Roberts, they would have never raised this kind of money. To some this is a chance to get the genre going again. IF this game continues to be successful, EA and others will take notice and we might start seeing AAA games in the genre again.

    The people supporting this aren’t the gullible types The Wulf thinks they are, these are the diehard space fans that have been neglected by the top publishers, and look at this as a way to have their favorite type of game come back.

    #12 1 year ago
  13. Nakoichi

    If it was a million dollars to add fast travel akin to guild wars or skyrim I would agree it sounds unreasonable. However; the stretch goal does not outline a simple fast travel system but a fully featured mass transit system in both space and on planet surfaces to move between cities, these new modes of transportation are not just click a waypoint and teleport, they are monorails shuttles and carriers to transport your smaller craft between planets.

    #13 1 year ago
  14. TheBlackHole

    @3 it can’t fail, they’ve already got your money. That’s the point.

    Also, I’m not buying it at all – $85 average submission? No, I don’t think 300,000 people would pay that as an average donation to get an unproven space mmo made.

    Something is not right.

    #14 1 year ago
  15. Christopher Jack

    @14, That’s the median- you’re forgetting a lot of people donated in excess of $100. They’re the outliers.

    #15 1 year ago
  16. Uncontested

    @15 You’re both forgetting there are a LOT of people who donated in excess of $1,000 is more like it. Just look at peoples titles on the forums, which usually gives you a vague idea. Myself I’ve pumped $800.00 even into Chris Roberts’ pockets and I don’t worry or question it one bit. I’ve spent far more on worse than funding what will hopefully be the game of my dreams, lol, and I’ve played many of CR’s games before that I’ve got enough faith in it to keep pledging my money.

    Hell if they end up selling capital ships again before the crowd funding ends i’ll probably be a few thousand deep into it.

    #16 1 year ago
  17. Christopher Jack

    @16, Your money, enjoy :) (sincerely, not sarcastically)

    #17 1 year ago
  18. MFBB

    #11 its going to be a console game aswell.

    They said they would like to port it to the PS4 after the PC version is done.

    So if it dosnt fail, most likely we will get a PS4 version aswell.

    #18 1 year ago
  19. TheBlackHole

    @15 no, it’s the average, not the median. That figure is derived from the total revenue generated divided by the number of contributions.

    The median is when you take each individual unit contribution and pick the middle one, or two if the total is an even number (by order, not by unit value).

    Maths.

    So, yes, $85 average across over a quarter of a million people is preposterously high for a crowd funded project.

    #19 1 year ago
  20. TheBlackHole

    And as for @16, I’m not forgetting that some people have put lots of money into this project, but if you look at even the strongest crowd funded projects, the top contributors are the exception, not the rule.

    Something just doesn’t fit. I’m not being negative for the sake of it, but logic and common sense tells me there’s more to this than meets the eye.

    #20 1 year ago
  21. DSB

    I really don’t think that’s much of a smoking gun TheBlackHole

    I don’t remember the tiers exactly, but I was considering pledging for a while, and I believe the “cool” ships started at around 40 bucks, and there was no way I was going to pledge and not get a cool ship in the process.

    I imagine that a considerable number of pledges would be thinking the same, which is hardly unthinkable (just look at all the people who want beta/alpha access on an average Kickstarter) and then the 40 dollar tier sets a pretty high bar.

    And it is a AAA-indie. It’s going to be huge, and (as a backer, at least) you have to assume that they will pull out all the stops in terms of the value provided, so paying 60 dollars for an unusual AAA-game by a legendary designer, for a lavish game in a lavish genre is less of a biggy.

    Paying 60 dollars for an adventure game, even by a legendary designer would be considerably more extreme.

    And thus it would be a lot easier for people to go from 60 to 80, especially if they’re geeks. And I think that if there’s one genre that attracts geeks practically like no other, it’s space sims. I remember the Wing Commander nerds back in the 90′s. Those guys were straight up weird.

    It could really also be as simple as Star Citizen attracting some of the outside backing they were looking for to begin with (meaning investors) in which case the average goes way down.

    #21 1 year ago
  22. Ireland Michael

    I don’t have anything against this game… but I do not for the life of me understand why it is getting so much backing. What the heck is pushing the crowd funding so much? Its astronomical compared to… well… pretty much everything else out there.

    What am I missing?

    #22 1 year ago
  23. TheBlackHole

    @22

    They’re charging for everything.

    The game
    Ships
    Currency
    Subscriptions

    Hell, even if you buy the game, you have to buy a separate compatible ship to access the game’s ‘ hanger’.

    It’s pay to play, pay to win, subs, microtransactions (I hesitate to call them that given some are up to our over $100) and there’s even insurance because you can lose your expensive ship through destruction or theft.

    In many ways it’s everything gamers hate about gaming nowadays, and yet somehow no-one cares.

    It’s a strange phenomenon, that’s for sure.

    #23 12 months ago
  24. DSB

    @23 I don’t really understand why insurance is a thing, but according to RSI, the insurance costs are minimal, so having the lifetime insurance just saves you a little bit of the ingame money. If you have a unique ship, you’ll definitely want to check the box though.

    http://starcitizen.wikia.com/wiki/Subscriptions

    I don’t like micro-transactions for anything, including currency. Spacebux are exploitative by nature, but I think it’s less egregious that they’re offering what is essentially DLC.

    We won’t really know whether those unbalance the game or not until we see a lot more of it. But if so, count me out.

    #24 12 months ago
  25. TheBlackHole

    @24

    Apparently lifetime insurance was only available to people who bought ships before the end of 2012. Now you have to choose anywhere between 2 months and 12 months insurance, depending on price.

    Seriously, the amount of stuff they’re selling, and the prices they’re selling for ($20-$40 for a premium looking hanger!?) is seriously insane.

    I don’t know how the stars have aligned around this game, but good luck to them, because this is the only time a game of theirs will ever make this money. There is absolutely NO way they can live up to the hype. The promise and the expectation is going to be so massive they can only fail.

    #25 12 months ago
  26. TheBlackHole

    @24

    Also, a $240 annual subscription basically gets you some emails, access to artwork and live streams, a couple of ship decals and your name ‘somewhere in the world’.

    Daylight. Fucking. Robbery.

    #26 12 months ago
  27. DSB

    @25,26 I don’t really disagree. It’s expensive, and it’s gonna be interesting to see the sales numbers.

    If it was a publisher putting the money down, I believe they’d break even around 2 million, but maybe that’s why they’re putting in the “macro-transactions”, so they get a stronger tail.

    In terms of the sub, it quite clearly says “superfan” though. It’s for the morbidly obsessed backer, for seriously.

    It says something about the space sim crowd though. They were always complete nutjobs. I remember literally being scared by the Wing Commander fans back in the 90′s. They were these COMPLETE nerds who would just start acting out a cutscene from Wing Commander, completely in character. Out of nowhere.

    Really, seriously creepy.

    I was thinking about backing it too, but I’m not gonna put down 40 bucks on something that I’m half-interested in.

    #27 12 months ago
  28. aussigamer

    TheBlackhole as a troll your doing a great job, everything you have said is either misleading or wrong though.

    @23 to play this game you only need to buy it, pay to play,
    NO SUBSCRIPTION
    from that point your wallet is safe everything is available in game you dont need to pay a cent more.

    @26 when you donate money your not being stolen from (how dont you get this concept)

    what your looking at is the backers (donation) page, your unfamiliar with the term it basically means giving someone something for nothing. so when i put $80 in and got a ship, that doesnt mean i got an $80 ship it means i gave $80 to StarCitizen and they said thanks with a token of appreciation.

    #28 12 months ago
  29. spoffle

    @28, You’ve just spelt “you’re” wrong 4 times. *facepalm*

    Only one “your” was correct, can you guess which one?

    #29 12 months ago
  30. aussigamer

    Thanks Spoffle ill do better next time xo

    #30 12 months ago
  31. bensonthetiger

    @26
    Star Citizen has a very good pay model that has the golden rule to avoid pay for play: Nothing is sold that can’t also be earned through playing the game. Now the balance of this principle will certainly be important as you can’t have a $10 item equal 100 hours of in-game effort because that ruins player equity.

    Although an average person donates $85 (as of now it’s $97 with $30.2 mil and 310k backers), that has nothing to do with what you have to pay to get the game. It’s actually only $30, which is half the price of a new game. Even if you take the assumption that people are paying $85; they are participating in the development process. Find another game with as much interaction between developers and fans. They have weekly videos, updates nearly every couple of days, and this is not to mention all the things they send to paying subscribers. The development of the game is also an experience, which people are willing to pay for/contribute to. It’s quite genius really.

    Say what you want about whether the game appeals to you, but the space sim is a market that is both niche and deep. The game is a lot more than lines of code at this point, but developers can’t share everything otherwise there wouldn’t be any surprises. They also don’t want to release anything before it reaches a certain level of functionality.

    I highly recommend checking out some videos, the forums or the chat roll to learn more about the game. Maybe it’s not for you, but a $30 game that has as large and as committed a community as this is bound to be a fun experience.

    #31 11 months ago

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