Expected to launch in 2014, then 2015, then 2016, then who even knows but maybe the Squadron 42 beta will be out in 2020 until it isn’t, Cloud Imperium Games’ space sim is back in the news with claims from studio employees and contractors that the game’s development is a total mess. Pretend to be surprised.
According to Forbes, CIG boss Chris Roberts is the problem, citing allegations of micromanagement, incompetence, and creative indecision, an ever-expanding project scope, and the use of Star Citizen’s almost $300 million budget – funded through Kickstarter and polygon purchases – to keep pushing out demos and celebrity-stuffed trailers, and not the actual game. Awkward.
“As the money rolled in, what I consider to be some of [Roberts’] old bad habits popped up—not being super-focused,” explains Mark Day, whose company was worked on the game in 2013 and 2014. “It had got out of hand, in my opinion. The promises being made – call it feature creep, call it whatever it is – now we can do this, now we can do that. I was shocked.”
Over 100 people have complained about the game to the US Federal Trade Commission, with refund requests for as much as $24,000.
“The game they promised us can’t even barely run,” says one player. “The performance is terrible and it’s still in an ‘Alpha’ state. I want out. They lied to us.”