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UPDATE: S.T.A.L.K.E.R successor scandal is media-fabricated, dev claims

Wednesday, 2 July 2014 10:53 GMT By Dave Cook

S.T.A.L.K.E.R: Shadow of Chernobyl’s supposed successor Areal has been called out as fraudulent by Survarium developer Vostok Games. West Games has now suggested that the scandal between West Games, modder Misery and Vostok Games was created by the media.

UPDATE 15: We’ve been sent a link to an Imgur gallery that seems to contain an Areal pre-alpha screenshot, compared to a screen taken from the Unity post-apocalyptic tool pack. The similarities are clear:

areal_1

areal_2

The second image was lifted directly from the Unity asset store, and was created by Unity developer Manufactura K4 (Michael O.)

The use of Unity is odd, considering West Games claimed it is building Areal in a new propitiatory game engine on Kickstarter. It could be using Unity to create a prototype of course, but we’re yet to see evidence of the game running in this purpose-built engine, or at all for that matter.

What do you think?

b0e6c39458027c5daaf3c19002cef850_large

UPDATE 14: Vostok Games has now responded to claims from West Games that the firm paid off press to purposely generate negative coverage surrounding the Areal project. (See updates 12 & 11)

Vostok’s Oleg Yavorsky told me over email, “I think instead of blaming press, the Areal guys should really be grateful for all the hype the press helped them make for their yet non-existing project. If they are accusing press of non-professionalism, the best favour you could do for them is simply stop writing about them.

“As for this particular piece (in update 10 below) “The statement in question has been written by a moderator of the Survarium forum and was later deleted on our request.” We removed that statement from our forum not because West Games asked, but because the thread was growing and we believe our forum is not the place to discuss 3rd party projects like that. So we deleted it.”

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UPDATE 13: I just asked West Games to clarify who Leonid Kovtun is (last mentioned in update 12). Based in Las Vegas, this individual is believed to be the recipient of all funds generated by the Areal Kickstarter campaign. The shooter’s Kickstarter page also lists West Games as based in Las Vegas.

I sent the West Games rep this email:

areal

The rep then replied with the following statement:

“Actually this is not in my rights to speak about private investors. But I can sured you, that West Games don’t work with any cheater, lier or criminal. We are clean in this all.

“We just have some support from the USA, other information I just haven’t right to say. And all rumors about Leonid are lie and wrong information – that all what I can say.

“Forbes Magazine has been written such lie, that we even didn’t know how to react on this. And I can asured you, we are honest people and we even don’t say bad things about our haters and hurters. Because we are higher, than this all, we are intelligent and civil people, who just want to make an awesome game, in honest way.”

We still don’t know who Leonid Kotvun is or how he is related to the Areal project.

UPDATE 12: Another round of emails. Here’s what I sent the West Games rep in response to Update 11 below:

areal

I received a reply that states – again – that Survarium developer Vostok Games paid for press against the Areal project, and that this unnamed party is “very close to the company.” The rep added that some individuals were paid to comment negatively on the game’s Kickstarter and Facebook pages, but that despite this, the game has support from the “USA”.

The reference to America could explain why West Games is listed as a Las Vegas firm on Kickstarter (See update 4 below), and could link to the firm to one Leonid Kovtun, who is receiving all of the funds generated by the Areal fundraising campaign. I’ve emailed them separately about this matter and will update if I hear more.

Here the new reply in full:

“You know, this information about that Vostok paid for publications appeared from some persons, that are a very close to that company. It was not honest from their side, and they have been asured, that no one will never know about this. But the truth has won. And also we had an information, that some people paid to other people, that they attack as with different things on a Kickstarter and Facebook.

“It was because of personal benifit of Vostok. When they have let to know, that West Games started a project Areal and got a support from USA – they didn’t know what to do, that’s why situation has turned against us – by all possibilities they tried and try to destroy us, and at the same time they deny this.

“But some people who close to them told to us everything. And this “puzzle” has been finished and everything unknown has became well known.”

On the lack of Areal footage and the predominant use of old S.T.A.L.K.E.R footage and Unity mod footage seen in the game’s Kickstarter pledge trailer, the rep continued:

“About video – there’s nothing criminal. West Games used some phragments to show their work from the past, what they did and how they worked, we didn’t cheat anyone – we just showed some phragments of the past work, to show to the people, that team can create a great game.

“New video with Areal gameplay, surely will be showen to people, when it will be finished. But it takes time. But of course one day it will be. Every day we show to people new updates on a Kickstarter page, we don’t hide anything from anyone, we want the people to let to know everything what we do. West Games are in Ukraine now, and knowing situation in this country, it’s very hard to work a very fast, but the team try.

“Now West Games, no matter of all work with different material, to proove and to show to people , that we are not lier, cheater or so. And, surely, we will make an awesome game – and that would be the best answer to our haters.”

UPDATE 11: In response to claims that the press has fabricated the controversy surrounding Areal, Vostok Games and Misery, I sent West Games the following email:

west

West Games replied, stating that Vostok Games has paid publications and gamers to run negative stories about Areal and post negative comments about the game online.

This is the full reply I received:

“This situation is a very terrible. Vostok Games and Misery LTD try to destroy us at fully program! They buy some “publication” in some pressa, they told lie about us, wrong information… Why? Because they clearly understand, that when Areal will be released – it will be more successful, than their project…

“And also, the most sad this – some people give money to other people for they write bad comments on our Kickstarter page. We don’t answer by evil on evil, because we are intelligent people, that would never fight in not honest way with our opponents.

“Our team work day and night to show wo people something interesting, we have a new members in our team, we work till death. And at several time they by all possibilities try to desturb tp us to make our game and to show to the people really great game!

“We are in a terrible situation! There’re many lie, wrong information around us… we try to defend our project, but we must work and go ahead! If to look at situation more clearly – we desturb to them, they don’t want that we create a great game, or in other way they will lose.

“Honestly, with all my heart, I would love to stop this war. But they will not stop to attack us by all chances. We stay on our position – to never answer by evil on evil; the best answer will be – when we will create a great game, that will be loved by many people around the world.”

UPDATE 10:

In an odd turn of events, West Games’ Igor Buryak has claimed that the controversy surrounding Areal, Survarium developer Vostok Games, modder Misery and other parties has been fabricated by the games press, despite there being solid evidence that all the related parties have disagreed or disputed each other these past few weeks.

Here’s the interview:

Buryak’s translated quote reads, “As a matter of fact, this scandal between Vostok Games and West Games is not a scandal at all, but some nonsense that many media outlets published without doing any research, thus becoming the victims of this deceit.”

He claims the media has its facts wrong, despite the fact we (and others) did a lot of research into this, and received actual written statements (further down the page) from Vostok Games representatives who took grievance with the actions of West Games.

Buryak added, “We requested an official response from Vostok Games and received one from their PR Director Oleg Yavorsky: “Vostok Games can’t make any legal claim against West Games because Vostok Games owns no rights for the S.T.A.L.K.E.R brand and franchise. The statement in question has been written by a moderatior of the Survarium forum and was later deleted on our request.”

That last part about the comment might be true, but what about the actual, written statement (also further down this page) sent to VG247 by Yavorsky himself calling out the Areal project? Was that a figment of the media’s imagination too? Was it also a mistake?

We think not.

On Vostok’s claims that West Games is not comprised of true S.T.A.L.K.E.R creators, Buryak continued “Oleg Yavorsky says we have no former GSC employees. He points out high staff turnover in GSC. Well, this wasn’t addressed to West Games. He can’t make such a statement because it would simply be a lie. Since we’re at the very beginning of our work we can’t (and should not) make our whole team public, because as soon as we do that they’ll get caught up in gossip and accusations made by our competitors.”

What do you make of this?

areal art

UPDATE 9:

Areal developer West games has sent us an update, explaining that it has just hired Alexey Sytyanov as video game development consultant. Its odd, seeing as he was always listed as a core team member on the game’s Kickstarter page from day one.

What do you think?

areal_kickstarter

UPDATE 8:

This one might be a translation error, but this Areal Kickstarter post reads, “Also, regarding Union Studio, we had a preliminary project that was supposed to be a generic shooter, and we didn’t agree with that vision. That project became Survarium from Vostok Games and we founded West Games. Now, as you know, we have Areal in development.”

It appears that West Games is now claiming responsibility for Survarium’s creation, as well as S.T.A.L.K.E.R – a claim that has been heavily disputed by the former GSC World developers now at Vostok Games.

When asked by Eurogamer to respond to this fresh claim, Vostok’s Oleg Yavorsky said, “We never had anything in common with Union Studio. I do hope it’s a translation mistake.”

UPDATE 7:

Since the Areal Kickstarter began, its most vocal critic has been S.T.A.L.K.E.R modder team Misery Development, which was responsible for the successfully Kickstarted post-apocalyptic shooter The Seed.

Areal developer West Games has since threatened the team with legal action, prompting the following retraction on Misery Development’s Facebook page:

“Misery Development Ltd. has been formally asked to resign from commenting on West Games and their Kickstarter project Areal. Misery Development Ltd. would like to state that whether or not to pledge on a Kickstarter campaign is for the community to decide, and an individual choice.”

West Games has also updated its Kickstarter feed with a post called “let’s make games, not war…”, in which it attempted to divert attention away from controversy to the game itself, despite failing to show any of the game or discuss it in great detail.

There was, however, some concept art of a tank that can only be used in the shooter’s green zone:

areal_kickstarter_tank

The jury is still out on the project’s legitimacy.

Via Eurogamer.

UPDATE 6:

VG247 has been sent a statement penned by West Games founder Eugene Kim, who lists himself as GSC World’s former Software Architect, Teamlead on LinkedIn. He worked there for one year and eight months, and it is this short tenure that has caused Vostok Games – a team comprised of S.T.A.L.K.E.R creators – to call out claims that Areal is being developed by the creators of that game, and that it is the shooter’s true successor.

Kim said in his statement, “Almost immediately after we launched on Kickstarter however, Misery LTD and Vostok Games started accusing us of fraud and of being scammers. Misery LTD in particular has aggressively perpetuated this fallacy.

“We contacted an official representative of Vostok Games about their comments and they replied that they do not have any legal accusations against us and do not have any allegations of fraud against us. The forum topic on Vostok Games, wherein a moderator accused us, among other things, of not being former GSC employees has since been deleted.

”It’s very hard to see people associated with the S.T.A.L.K.E.R. franchise perpetuating lies and biased misinformation, with the purpose of attracting people to their own post apocalyptic video games.”

“Misery LTD has actively been spreading misinformation and outright lies. They have hijacked our Kickstarter comments section by posting under various aliases and promoting their own post apocalyptic video game, called Project Seed. They have even posted a whole page on their website claiming that we are not who we say we are and are scammers. We have posted a video of our team in the updates section to disprove that (See update five below)

“It’s very hard to see people associated with the S.T.A.L.K.E.R. franchise perpetuating lies and biased misinformation, with the purpose of attracting people to their own post apocalyptic video games. It’s even harder for us to see that misinformation posted as fact.

“People are even mad that we are releasing on consoles in addition to PC (PS4, Xbox One and Wii U). All that we really want to do is make Areal an awesome game, and we know that we can do it because of our past experience in the video game industry.”

Questions still remain. How can West Games, a new firm, produce a multi-format title on a shoestring budget of $50,000? Is it using this fee to make a prototype then use it to secure additional capital or partnership? If this is being made in a proprietary engine, then why show largely Unity and X-Ray footage on Kickstarter? Why does the clip contain so many shots of the original S.T.A.L.K.E.R?

There are many questions, but few answers, and just the same counter-claims that Vostok Games and Misery are needlessly attacking the project. We cannot say for certain if this is a scam, as we have not received any personalised email reply from Kim or West Games representatives, despite emailing the team. GSC World’s site lists Oleg Yavorsky as its point of contact. He now works at Survarium studio Vostok Games.

We’ll keep an eye on this matter as it transpires, but for now, there are still several holes in the evidence, and not enough us to report, ultimately, that Areal is either legitimate or a scam.

What do you think?

UPDATE 5:

Areal developer West Games has posted a minute-long clip introducing members of the game’s team, including founder Eugene Kim, to prove that they are real.

In a statement sent to VG247 last night, the team said of its clip, “People in the Kickstarter comments section have been saying that our team is fake, and that our Kickstarter is a scam. Hopefully the video shows that we’re real… We fully understand that Misery LTD and people associated with them are flaming a witch hunt against us, and trying to discredit us at every chance that they get, whilst promoting their own post apocalyptic video game.

“They say that they are not doing this, but multiple accounts have repeatedly posted misleading information about us, and then directed commentators to Misery’s site, which features a project that’s exceedingly similar to S.T.A.L.K.E.R.. They are spreading lies and misinformation to various news outlets, who are unknowingly posting said lies and misinformation.”

stalker_successor_areal

UPDATE 4:

In a Kickstarter updated entitled ‘Addressing Vostok Games,’ Eugene Kim, head of Areal developer West Games wrote, “We have contacted Vostok Games about their supposed claim that we are fraudulent.

“They say that they have no relation to that claim and have since deleted the forum topic wherein a moderator accused us of being fake. The Kickstarter comments section has been completely hijacked by a couple of people, and even if we comment there, our posts will be ignored and buried.

“Misery LTD in particular is developing another post apocalyptic video game and is stirring controversy to attract people to his Kickstarter project. I hope that you, our supporters, can see through this deliberate negativity and help us make an awesome game with Areal. Update 2 is coming later today, and will clarify things even further.”

Misery LTD has penned their own blog entitled ‘Areal is a Scam,’ in which the S.T.A.L.K.E.R mod creator has raised several questions regarding the game’s development.

For starters, he notes that West Games is said to be based in Las Vegas, Nevada, according to the Kickstarter page. It is a Russian firm.

Misery adds, “Any Kickstarter pledge to AREAL is directed towards a ‘Leonid Kovtun’. Who is Leonid Kovtun? What is his role in the project? and why is his name not listed on the main page? All these questions are relevant and important, because Amazon Payments authorized the future pay in benefit of that person, Leonid Kovtun, a natural person and not a company or brand.

“Additionally, West Games is based in… Las Vegas?! How far from claimed team nationality can we possibly get here? West games was only reserved as a company name on May 20 2014 and will expire 20th of August 2014 by Leonid Kovtun of Nevada.”

Continuing, Misery theorised that if Areal development only requires $50,000 in funding, then one would assume the shooter is already far on in development. He asks, “So why base a Kickstarter video on 90% old S.T.A.L.KE.R. cut scenes? It is irrelevant and this campaign is about AREAL (which is not a S.T.A.L.K.E.R. title).”

There are further accusations over on Misery’s blog. Check them out and decide for yourself what’s going on until we an gain further clarity.

UPDATE 3:

A subsequent post delves into the actions of Misery LTD a little further, in which West Games championed passing 760 backers. At the time of writing Areal has made $29,522 of its $50,000 goal.

The team wrote, “As we’ve mentioned before, a former S.T.A.L.K.E.R. modder and current creator of a similar post apocalyptic Kickstarter project has been flooding our comments with negativity and misinformation, and then using various accounts to promote his game, called Project Seed. This is what we in the industry call guerrilla PR… We are taking appropriate measures to combat this.

“We hope that this negativity stops, and we want to be supportive as well as constructive towards our peers and colleagues. Stay tuned for the video update!”

We have contacted West Games directly, but we’ve yet to hear back. Stay tuned for more updates.

areal

UPDATE 2:

Vostok Games PR and Marketing Manager Oleg Yavorsky has sent a statement to VG247. The studio is comprised largely of former GSC World and ex-S.T.A.L.K.E.R developers, and finds West Games’ claim that Areal is being developed by the creators of the classic shooter fraudulent.

Yavorsky told us over email, “So that you understand, over the years of development of the S.T.A.L.K.E.R. and then Metro series, there have been literally hundreds of people involved in working on various bits and pieces, starting from beta-testers up to modellers responsible for certain weapon models.

“Many people came to the studio to work for a few months just for the sake of adding “S.T.A.L.K.E.R. development” to their portfolio. Frequently they claimed afterwards to be the ‘core’ developers behind the game (you wouldn’t know anyway, right?).

“Yet, my biggest concern is that West Games are using the footage and assets of S.T.A.L.K.E.R. and representing them as their own, which is not only illegal, but simply just not right. I guess it’s all made for the sake of getting extra publicity (which unfortunately works), but guys on Kickstarter should probably pay attention.”

As you can see below, we found that West Games is using old S.T.A.L.K.E.R concept art and claiming it to be art for its new game Areal.

Make of that what you will.

We’ve reached out to West Games to get its side of the story as well. We’ll update you if we hear back.

stalker1

UPDATE 1:

Members of the Survarium forum have also discovered that one piece of art used on the Areal Kickstarter campaign has come from a novel called ‘Areal’ penned by fantasy writer Sergej Tarmashev.

areal

The forum users claim that the art is being used fraudulently, but Tarmashev himself is listed as a member of West Games. It appears that the game is an adaptation of his book series, as the descriptor linked above does contain mention of mutants, along with references to The Dark Lord, The Group of the Bear and more. Tarmashev’s direct involvement lends weight to Areal being an adaptation of his novels.

This piece of art also appears on the Areal Kickstarter, and is claimed to have been stolen by West Games:

areal art

However, the piece above was originally posted online in 2011 by artist Eugene Cherenkov, who is listed as a West Games concept artist.

This all seems fine to a point, until you watch the Areal Kickstarter pitch video, which can be seen here. It includes various S.T.A.L.K.E.R scenes, still concept art and if you look closely, you’ll catch a glimpse of this Unity3D tech demo:

Cheers Kotaku & Manufactura K4.

It’s odd that a Unity3D demo should feature, because West Games states that Areal is being created in a proprietary engine for multiple formats, all on a $50,000 budget. While outside capital may have been secured elsewhere, this low sum for such a grand concept does raise several questions.

We’ll have more as it comes.

ORIGINAL STORY:

We reported on the Areal Kickstarter this morning, which currently sits at $19,776 of developer West Games’ $50,000 goal.

It appears to share many traits with the original S.T.A.L.K.E.R, such as mutants, apocalyptic decline and more, and is being dubbed, “The definitive spiritual successor to the cult hit S.T.A.L.K.E.R. series.”

On the game’s background, West Games writes, “The core people that developed the S.T.A.L.K.E.R. series have come together to create a new team called West Games. Together, we’re developing a game called Areal, which continues the spirit of S.T.A.L.K.E.R., and adds an engrossing story, unique game-play and innovative features.

“With that said, Areal is not S.T.A.L.K.E.R., but a game developed by the people who made S.T.AL.K.E.R.. Most of our team is composed of former senior GSC Game World staff members, and now that we have our own fully independent studio, we can create the ultimate post apocalyptic video game.”

It has since been claimed that the team behind Areal are not original GSC Game World developers and were not the creators of S.T.A.L.K.E.R.

Over on the Survarium forums, Vostok games’ Joe Mullin wrote, “We have contacted GSC’s lawyers regarding this fraudulent claim of being the developers of Stalker and Metro Last Light. Please do all you can do ensure people know these claims are false.”

Interestingly, we had a look at the Areal homepage, which includes several pieces of concept art, such as this drawing of a soldier:

stalker

The same image appears on the official S.T.A.L.K.E.R Wiki page:

stalker1

The Areal page has used several pieces of artwork from the official wiki, which initially raised some questions about their use. We’ve since learned that the images were originally penned by Alexei Moseichuk, who is listed as a member of the West Games development team over on the Areal Kickstarter page.

However, it is believed the images were originally created for the development of S.T.A.L.K.E.R, so it’s unclear where the legal lines are drawn regarding their use in Areal.

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35 Comments

  1. prudislav

    Sad thing is that Areal looks much better than Survarium MMOish nonsence

    #1 7 months ago
  2. The_Red

    @prudislav
    So sad yet true. Seriously, WTF is up with that MMO? Ditch it and instead focus on a proper singleplayer STALKER inspired game.

    #2 7 months ago
  3. Dave Cook

    @The_Red They explained it in my interview with Vostok last year :)

    http://www.vg247.com/2012/11/27/survarium-from-the-ashes-of-s-t-a-l-k-e-r-2/

    #3 7 months ago
  4. The_Red

    @Dave Cook
    Thank you.
    Rather sad and troubling. From the interview, it seems like they just HAD to choose the worst option (Free to Play Online game) to survive. On one hand, it’s understandable. On the other hand, I’d rather the STALKER legacy die than to see it turned into a Online F2P project.

    It’s especially interesting to read now that Crytek (Another PC friendly FPS dev) is having troubles, parts of which have stemmed from their focus on trendy F2P genre (WARFACE!!!).

    #4 7 months ago
  5. mamu-ti

    I don t understand nothing?

    What now they will made the game or not?

    #5 7 months ago
  6. Dave Cook

    @The_Red That’s it yeah, as with many things in this life, the lack of money tipped their hand.

    #6 7 months ago
  7. YoungZer0

    @prudislav

    How can you say that? We haven’t seen anything so far, except gameplay footage from STALKER.

    #7 7 months ago
  8. mamu-ti

    Is this scam or real?

    #8 7 months ago
  9. prudislav

    @YoungZer0
    i just meant base concept and i really really hate F2P MMO bull***t, which is the way Vostok went

    #9 7 months ago
  10. Erthazus

    It’s a SCAM. Fucking cocksuckers.

    I saw UNITY files when they said about new engine.

    Pricks. Assholes that deserve to die. Yes, I know it sounds horrible but this shit is a money grabbing thing. They steal money from the player.

    #10 7 months ago
  11. YoungZer0

    @prudislav

    Can’t disagree with that.

    #11 7 months ago
  12. mamu-ti

    So it is real or not?

    #12 7 months ago
  13. Tormenter

    That update no 4 from the peeps at Areal.. DOESN’T SCAN.

    It doesn’t address any issues that have been of contention and also addresses non issues (where the company is from.. this has never mattered it is recognised that non US company will register in the US to take advantage of KS.. we know this.. NOT AN ISSUE.. address things that matter.).. plus the way it’s worded is verbal prestidigitation.. don’t look there, look here.

    Something is going on.. and I would.’t trust these guys as far as I could throw them.

    Plus the whole $50, 000 for a game that logically must be mostly completed it’s development.. YET, the company advertise the game with assets that have (should have) nothing to do with it… This stinks of Russian Scam… (sorry to point fingers at Russians, but your country is in a bit of a mess.. thanks to the US campaign of political and ecconomic destabilisation.. otherwise known as legal terrorism.)

    #13 7 months ago
  14. DarkElfa

    @Tormenter Fuck you man.

    #14 7 months ago
  15. mamu-ti

    Areal team video

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6GK3baH33os

    #15 7 months ago
  16. Elvis71

    Hey VG247, Just take a look at what some Reddit user found out (with sources) .. in my opinion its a Scam and not a very good one at that. Oleg Yavorsky for example was working as PR Manager since the first iterations of STALKER:Oblivion Lost, even before it was turned into STALKER:Shadow of Chernobyl. He very well knows who work and contributed the most to the STALKER Franchise.

    By no means these people are the “creators” of STALKER. As long as they don´t show anything with substance, this Kickstarter is a good way to burn your money. If they really have something, they would not show only STALKER footage (some parts are even from the Complete Mod, which they 100% not worked on) and from Unity (Post-Apo Pack https://www.assetstore.unity3d.com/en/#!/content/16452).

    Thats a bad joke.

    http://www.reddit.com/r/stalker/comments/291nt4/project_araiel_uses_template_unity_map_asset_to/cihmqfe

    #16 7 months ago
  17. mistermogul

    I’m not saying this is a scam or not but that video could be anybody. It hardly proves anything does it? Also they seem to be a bit shifty to me. Especially the female commentator who has a seemingly nervous squeaky voice!

    #17 7 months ago
  18. karma

    I was a huge stalker fan but for some reason i never trusted GSC. Always felt that they weren’t honest and transparent. In particular any interactions with their community managers. I always put that feeling down to the studio heads, since they were the ones that dictated how the company was run.
    Its hard to know who to believe here, but I dont trust Vostok any more than I trust this new GSC ex-employee startup studio.

    #18 7 months ago
  19. LeonieRzztqzkoj

    Recollection is a marvellous characteristic to be man. It will make us who we have been given that we apply it to keep know-how about our past activities.

    #19 7 months ago
  20. NorineLudowici

    Your storage is really a invaluable source that you could focus on improving each day. To keep your memory sharp, you need to do a little workout routines that encourage memory developing.

    #20 7 months ago
  21. The_Red

    Ok, I really REALLY wanted this game (Areal) to be real but after reading VG and EG updates, Reddit info and even their own KS updates I am now convinced that this is either:
    A) Scam.
    B) A game by people who have never made a game.

    Seriously, the Unity screenshot and “variety of engines” comments from them in face of their own “proprietary engine” claim is just hilarious. That alongside listing “PS4, XB1 and the freaking Wii U” for that engine and this amount. Yeah, they are either total noobs or total thieves.

    #21 7 months ago
  22. Dave Cook

    @The_Red The lack of substance is worrying. They want money but have little to convince backers with.

    #22 7 months ago
  23. Tormenter

    @DarkElfa
    And fuck you right back.

    ‘smatter? Truth hurt?.. or are you about to deny a (so far) 60 year campaign of economic and political sabotage perpetrated by the US againt the Soviet state? Go on, deny it… Give us all a laugh… OR are you going to deny that the effects on their society and their ability to seek a stable economic future for themselves, because of those actions, isn’t the equivalent of just dropping a bomb on them?

    Legal terrorist actions perpetrated by the single largest criminal organisation on the planet.. The US governement.

    #23 7 months ago
  24. unacomn

    On behalf of Eastern Europe, I apologize. There’s a certain “let the neighbor’s goat die” temperament in this region that tends to manifest itself in everything.

    #24 7 months ago
  25. Elvis71

    @Dave Cook

    I believe it is absolutely unrealistic that they develop their own proprietary engine that covers almost all platforms … So far everything they wrote in their updates is diverting from the fact that they did´nt show anything that represent a game in development. Concept Art is not suited at all since it could be 5 years old or for something completely different originally.

    Even if they are in pre-alpha, there has to be something … something that obviously cannot be stitched together in a few days.

    #25 7 months ago
  26. stretch215

    @tormenter- stop with the bullshit, the fucking Soviets sabotaged themselves into non-existence with their unsustainable socialist policies. Of course the U.S. made attempts to destabilize the U.S.S.R. during the cold war, but they didn’t really need to. The Soviets were doing a good enough job of doing that themselves. Lol

    #26 7 months ago
  27. ThePlotThickens

    Kinda figured this was sketch when i saw the original story. Bummer cuz i really loved the stalker games.

    I really enjoy these types of articles. feels like real games journalism. More stuff like this and less “nintendo doesnt know what cool is” plz

    #27 7 months ago
  28. The_Red

    They just don’t give up.
    It’s sad how a game like Grass / Rock Simulator has more original assets, shown more gameplay and ultimately, more integrity.

    I guess Forbes, EuroGamer and all other media that alongside VG247 keep covering their scam project are part of a secret society hell bent on destroying the true successor to STALKER games.

    #28 7 months ago
  29. Elvis71

    Especially when you look at update 10 & 11 of this news, everybody should be aware that there is something very fishy ^^ They only refer to everybody trying to put them down, totally ignoring the fact that they didnt show anything of substance to their backers, the media and everybody else.

    This would be the easiest and the only way to stop this discussions.

    The only thing is that they need to meet the 50.000 $ goal (hence its so low) so that they can keep the money and everything above that. So they will go on and try to play the “we are the vicitims” game.

    Kickstarter should force them to show something substancial or close down the campaign. There has to be some sort of governance.

    #29 7 months ago
  30. RandomTiger

    As someone who backs things on kickstarter I value this and other sites trying to find out what the hell is going on,

    Is the Las Vegas thing not just that you need to have a US bank account in order for to list pledges in $’s?
    Using Euro’s or anything that isn’t the dollar has been proved to be a disadvantage as it puts off Americans where a large percentage of the backers are.

    Anyway, keep digging. Can’t but help feel that even if the whole thing is totally legit that they have made themselves look like people you wouldn’t want to trust money and development to. They really do need to address all the issues that have been raised with well written English reply.

    #30 7 months ago
  31. Dave Cook

    @RandomTiger Yeah that’s it. Even if this is legitimate, they’ve been going about it all wrong. I’m hardly brimming with confidence over the project right now.

    #31 7 months ago
  32. The_Red

    Holy shit at UPDATE 15.
    The Unity comparison is hilarious. Thank god they weren’t using Unreal Engine 3 and posting screens of Unreal Tournament’s weapons as “STALKER inspired weapons”.

    #32 7 months ago
  33. thegrimmling

    @Dave Cook Can’t the internet collectively ignore this project and stop caring?

    #33 7 months ago
  34. Tormenter

    If KS LTD are getting money for this, shouldn’t they be made to be the arbitrator?

    Surely they have to have ‘some’ responsibility in this matter?

    #34 7 months ago
  35. YoungZer0

    @thegrimmling

    As long as it’s getting money, I don’t think it would be a good idea to ignore them.

    Similar to the guys from the solar road panels.

    #35 7 months ago

Comments are now closed on this article.

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  • Battlefield Hardline beta date leaked – rumour

    According to an email sent to some YouTubers, the upcoming beta for Battlefield Hardline is scheduled for February 3. The date for the Battlefield Hardline beta is believed to be February 3. It comes from an email that’s been sent by Ronku to various YouTubers reminding them of the starting date, February 3. Ronku is […]

  • The history of The Witcher: beyond the Road With No Return

    We take a look at The Witcher franchise, from the original short stories to its blockbuster video games. The world was first introduced to Geralt through a set of short stories called The Witcher (English translation) written by author Andrzej Sapkowski. The first short story was published in the Polish fantasy and science fiction magazine […]

  • Bringing The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt to life

    In The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, CD Projekt RED takes a whopping enormous map and fills it with stuff you actually want to see and do. Do you remember back before Oblivion came out there was a lot of chat about how much more lifelike and realistic the NPCs would be? Rather than just hanging […]

  • The big Witcher 3 questions answered: delays, playing as Ciri, and why enemies don’t scale

    Spending some time with The Witcher 3 level designer Miles Tost we were able to put some of our immediate questions to him after playing the game for over 4 hours. “That sense of improvement doesn’t happen if the monsters around you remain the same strength, there’s no sense of achievement.” Tost is a relaxed […]

  • The Witcher 3 sets a new generational standard for graphics

    The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is the new standard in outrageously pretty. “The Witcher 3 is more than just eye-candy. Destiny, once the loveliest thing I had ever looked upon, has been outclassed.” The Witcher 3 is even better looking than the screenshots would have you believe, and until you see it in motion, running […]

  • The Witcher 3: hands-on with the RPG of the year

    Getting to know a bawdy hero; Geralt of Rivia’s third outing is accessible, untamed, and dripping with story. Warning: some spoilers are inevitable. “The Witcher 3 is horror and violence. It’s charming, witty and cheeky. Like Geralt, it knows what it wants and it’s going to grab it with both hands.” The Witcher 3: Wild […]

  • Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel gets Lady Hammerlock DLC tomorrow

    The Lady Hammerlock DLC for Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel will be released on PS3 and Xbox 360 tomorrow, January 27. The new playable character comes with three skill trees and the action skill Cold As Ice. If you haven’t bought the season pass for Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel you can download the DLC for $9.99, you lucky […]

  • A limited edition 20th Anniversary PS4 just sold for $128,000

    Sony has just auctioned one of its limited edition 20th Anniversary PS4 consoles for over $128,000. The model had the serial number 00001, according to the Wall Street Journal. “We appreciate all who participated in the auction and are surprised at the highest bid price, which was higher than our expectations,” said a rep for […]

  • Here’s Killer Instinct’s new Omen and Golem fighters in action

    Microsoft has revealed Killer Instinct Season 2′s fighter Omen in a new trailer. Stick around for the end of the video and you’ll also get a peek at another new fighter, Golem. Omen is a bonus character and as such isn’t available as part of the main season roster. He’s available for free to Ultra […]

  • Digital copies of Far Cry 4 are being deleted from Uplay

    Ubisoft appears to be deleting copies of Far Cry 4 bought through digital third-party retailers. According to the Ubisoft support forums, copies of the game acquired via G2Play and G2A are being removed from Uplay. Users had not been given any warning by publisher Ubisoft that the game will be removed, although it is now […]

  • Gearbox wants “badass” talent for the next Borderlands

    Borderlands 3 may not have been announced at PAX this weekend, but studio boss Randy Pitchford is currently recruiting for the next game in the series. We are recruiting for next Borderlands. This is the big one. Industry badass? E-mail me: heyrandy@gearboxsoftware.com pic.twitter.com/ZG9dLytX1B — Randy Pitchford (@DuvalMagic) January 26, 2015 A recruitment push would suggest […]

  • Destiny: less grind, fairer economy in House of Wolves DLC

    Destiny developer Bungie has said it aims to lessen the grind in House of Wolves, and it won’t repeat mistakes it made with rewards in The Dark Below. Gear rewards will be fairer, according to lead designer Luke Smith in a Neogaf thread. For example, buying from a vendor should not invalidate gear rewarded for […]

  • Halo: The Master Chief Disaster

    Over two months since release and Xbox One’s big Christmas game is still a turkey, says Rich Stanton. “The game has now been available for two-and-a-half months, including the blockbuster Christmas season, and by any reasonable standard it doesn’t work.” Halo: The Master Chief Collection launched worldwide on November 11, 2014. Intended as something of […]

  • Homeworld Remastered Collection dated, first gameplay footage released

    Homeworld Remastered Collection has a release date, and as promised, the gameplay footage of Gearbox Software’s remake has been released along with the news that Homeworld Shipbreaker development continues. The video was shown during the Inside Gearbox Software panel earlier this morning at PAX South. Last year, Gearbox had said hoped to release the title […]

  • Clock Tower spiritual successor Night Cry has landed on Kickstarter

    The Kickstarter for Clock Tower spiritual successor, Project Scissors, recently announced as Night Cry, has launched. A teaser directed by The Grudge director Takashi Shimizu was released for the game earlier this month, and the full short film can be viewed below. Shimizu is also creative director on the project and Silent Hill creative and environment […]

  • Toukiden Kiwami mission trailer released, pre-order bonuses detailed

    Pre-order bonuses for Toukiden Kiwami have been announced for PlayStation 4 and Vita. Here’s the pre-order bonus list for each participating retailer: North America GameStop – Armor inspired by new slayers Reki and Soma’s costumes and classic armor from Toukiden‘s six original NPC slayers. Amazon – 2 exclusive pieces of armor: a set of Tenko […]

  • More Final Fantasy Type-0 HD, Final Fantasy 15 info doled out by Tabata

    Final Fantasy Type-0 HD director Hajime Tabata took part in a Reddit AMA yesterday, and answered a variety of questions pertaining to the game and Final Fantasy 15. According to Tabata, the first playthrough of the game will last around 40 hours, but “the real fun” starts from the second playthrough which contains new events. […]

  • This video gives you an idea of what Borderlands Online is like

    A video for Borderlands Online, the China-exclusive title from 2K, Shanda Games and Gearbox, has been released. Posted on MMO Culture, the video was released to announce the “technical test” which started today. Borderlands Online is an instance-based online shooter, and will probably never reach western shores. Still, you can have a look anyway.

  • Guild Wars 2: Heart of Thorns is the MMO’s first expansion

    The first expansion for Guild Wars 2, Heart of Thorns, was announced today during PAX South, and ArenNet has posted a few content details for it on the official webiste. Heart of Thorns contains a reimagined progression with the new Mastery system, which provides new training opportunities for characters beyond level 80. Players will be […]

  • Turn-based action platformer Ronin has been polished up, nets a publisher

    Tomasz Waclawek has polished up his freeware title Ronin and will be releasing it through publisher Devolver Digital later this year. The turn-based action platformer stars a vengeful ninja who is determined to kill important memebers of a powerful corporation. Weapons at your disposal include razor wire and a katana, or you avoid combat by […]

  • Footage of cancelled Justice League brawler surfaces

    Footage of the cancelled Double Helix-developed Justice League brawler has surfaced online. The game was supposed to be a tie-in title for the also cancelled Justice League film directed by George Miller, according to leaked images and information from 2012. Jon Gwyn, the game’s artist and now Rockstar San Diego staffer, said at the time […]