J. Allen wrote:
Yeah, I say it's time to start doing big tests and then push the game out the door. From what I've seen, it is packed full of features, and if they want to add something later, they can create an expansion.
This, I think, is shortsighted. CIG is building a gigantic persistent universe -- EVE Online
on steroids -- which includes a space-sim mode (including multiple stations aboard a ship), a FPS module (including boarding), Cargo Tetris, and God knows what else. Right now, they can't even get the space-sim mode with four ships working -- one of the critical bugs that stopped them from releasing Arena Commander last week was because the game crashed when enemy ships spawned
Beyond that, there's still the Squadron 42
campaign, which they haven't even begun working on (and their script is over 2,000 pages
The additional stuff that gets unlocked, while being largely art assets, still requires a lot of work, particularly they're designing and building assets for hardware that won't even be out for two years. But let's talk about the stretch goals:
$46 mil - Updated Scanning Software: Coding, assets
$45 mil - Hadesian Artifact - Some sort of actual content
$44 mil - Stellar Cartography - Interactive star chart that will need to be coded
$43 mil - Bonus armor, so art asset
$42 mil - Bunch of stupid shit and a new fighter (and according to Roberts, a new fighter costs at least $100,000, so a couple thousand man-hours of work)
$41 mil - Procedural Generation of star systems and planets: Fucking
this will never happen
$40 mil - Two entirely new systems with associated art, content, server support, etc.
The issue is, and always has been, timeline, budget and scope, all of which need to be kept in sync at any given time ... which has not been the case here. It's more like kids on a playground talking about their perfect game: "The game will never turn off and you can have multiple people running a ship and you can ram people and you can board ships and you can have battles on planets and you can trade stuff and and and and and." There's never been a point at which CIG has said, "For fuck's sake, no more, just get something done." And they aren't in a position to, because they have had no project management on this. They have their community manager developing the cargo tetris module, for Christ's sake.
Just look at the thrice-delayed Dogfight Module (we were supposed to have this in December, remember): What was originally just a core module that would feature a few ships is now a "game" that includes free flight, dogfighting, PvE, CTF, etc., and ties into the fucking game lore
. If they had stuck to the original scope, it would have been out by now. (Maybe. Possibly. The PAX East presentation, where it crashed every four seconds, is still my favorite thing of the last few years.)
This whole thing is basically Peter Molyneux: IN SPAAAAACE