October 18th 2012
Chris Roberts here. We have some pretty big news today.
First we hit $1M this morning! Congratulations and thanks to everyone for achieving this goal. Its amazing what we accomplished in just over seven days.
But that’s not all!
I am serious about listening to the opinion of this community, so when we asked whether you wanted a Kickstarter option on Facebook and had over 1000 affirmative responses we realized that we needed to provide that choice.
I’m a big fan of Kickstarter and have backed quite a few projects on it – including the Oculus Rift – and I think the core gaming community owes them a huge debt of gratitude for providing a mechanism to get games funded in genres that the modern day publishers aren’t interested in anymore.
Not using Kickstarter was never about saving 5%, as in the greater scheme that is a very reasonable fee for the service they provide. It was about making the experience frictionless for the existing 30,000 RSI members at the time of launch. I wanted a seamless experience in the fiction of the Star Citizen world where you could interact on the forums, check out development posts and back the project all from the same site and with the same login details.
But that’s only good if the RSI site can handle both the community features and the strain of thousands of people wanting to pledge. As you already know, we famously failed in that task upon launch. As of today we have got things mostly under control. We are working 24/7 in order to get all the intended functionality up, link back up orders to RSI memberships, provide an upgrade option, improve the community experience by moving to a more full featured forum system and speeding up the performance of the site. But doing all this always creates a risk that the site may go down briefly if one of our upgrades breaks the complicated beast that is a community site intertwined with a crowd funding platform.
The kind folks at Kickstarter have generously offered to help out. Not only are they happy for us to have a Star Citizen campaign but they are fine running in parallel with the crowd funding platform on this site. This is great news, as it allows us to provide all the Space Sim fans out there multiple options to back Star Citizen. Nervous about pledging in a custom solution on a site that has had some hick-ups? Use Kickstarter! If you can’t as you don’t have an Amazon account and don’t want to open one, use the RSI site, where we take Paypal and credit cards. It’s all about user choice and in this adding Kickstarter is a very good thing.
For fun, we’ve created a small Kickstarter pledge for existing backers. It’s called the “Kickstarter” and it’s an Electro Skin Hull Enhancement module. This is an upgrade package that players will be able to buy in game that allows ship owners to switch their hull appearance at a flick of a switch. The idea is that we will make skins available and allow players to make their own (within rules) once the game fully goes live. So for the $5 “Kickstarter” pledge we will add it to your current ship package, along with a custom skin that will tell the world that you backed twice! We added it to Kickstarter to allow fans to show their support in both places without breaking the bank.
Of course if you’ve already backed there is no obligation to do this. We are already eternally grateful to the existing backers for believing in the vision and helping us get half way to our goal after only 7 days!
The Kickstarter number will be combined with the RSI counter when we hit our minimum and stretch goals, so a pledge in either place counts towards our goal of reaching $2mill or more. We will link all Kickstarter pledges to their RSI account in the same way we intend to do with all the members that used the backed up site when our main one was down. We will have to get the data from Kickstarter so be patient as it won’t be instant, but we promise we will link everything up and nothing will get lost!
So if you’ve been holding back because you prefer Kickstarter or if you just want to show your support again please go to http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/cig/star-citizen
In addition to offering you more choices, we’re focused on getting back to the business of immersing you in this universe, so we’ve started a new section up called “Spectrum Dispatches” that will be in game fiction – news from what’s happening in the Star Citizen universe along with a couple of serialized story threads. We want to involve you in this universe from day one and not just wait until we release the multiplayer alpha!
Finally we have you heard you loud and clear about the ships. We will be releasing details on the various ships on over the coming days, and you should know that Conceptual Artist superstars Ryan Church and Jim Martin are hard at work visualizing them, which we will share when ready (this won’t be in the next few days though – it takes time to do things right!)
I hope you liked my mega update!
Let’s show the world that Space Sims are back!