Close
Are you sure? Are you sure you want to report this comment? I understand, report it. Cancel

Braben launches Elite Kickstarter

Braben launches Elite Kickstarter

Tue 06 Nov 2012 8:41am GMT / 3:41am EST / 12:41am PST
DevelopmentFinancial

Elite: Dangerous looking for 1,250,000 in funding

Frontier Development has taken to the newly UK friendly Kickstarter to restart work on cult sequel Elite: Dangerous.

The team has 60 days to raise 1,250,000 and in return promises "an amazing space epic with stunning visuals, incredible gameplay and breath-taking scope."

"We're using Kickstarter both as a means of test-marketing the concept to verify there is still interest in such a game that extends beyond the individuals who regularly contact me about the game, and raising the funds to do so," explained Frontier's Braben.

The 1.25 million target will allow it to make the "minimum game" and Braben expressed hope that the funding would go beyond this, to allow for more content and platforms. The game will use artist-directed procedural generation to keep the budget manageable.

"It also means it becomes a viable project to avoid the conventional publishing route - something that I don't believe can deliver a game like this successfully."

With 59 days left to go the project already has 829 backers and 42,851, a total that is rising even as these words are written. One contributor has already pledged at least 5000, winning themselves dinner with Frontier Developments and a star system named in their honour.

"Looking at all the high quality games we at Frontier have produced, from RollerCoaster Tycoon 3 to Kinectimals to LostWinds to Disneyland Adventures, I think the risk of non-delivery is small," Braben reassured contributors.

"We already have a large team who are very experienced at delivering complicated projects, and the key high-risk components (like networking) are already in place. If necessary then we will delay the release beyond March 2014, but I do not believe we will need to do so."

The deadline for funding is January 4 2013.

15 Comments

Patrick Frost
QA Project Monitor

382 173 0.5
You can have my money Frontier. If only your deadline was after my wedding next year then you could have more of it!
I absolutely adored Elite, and when the sequel emerged, the amount of gameplay elements completely caved my head in (in a good way!). If I was in my teens or older at the time of release then I think it would have had more play time that and the fact that the physics made space battles incredibly hard.

Looking forward to reading more about how the game is going to shape up and what their ambitions are.

Posted:A year ago

#1

Peter Dwyer
Games Designer/Developer

458 254 0.6
I would praise this except I have sour memories of how long it took him to actually do Frontier. I 'm genuinely not prepared to wait 5 years to see the end result of this so I'll let someone else throw their money at it.

Nice idea but, the reality of the production speeds at frontier make it a bit of a nonsense.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Peter Dwyer on 6th November 2012 9:10am

Posted:A year ago

#2

Andreas Gschwari
Senior Games Designer

542 528 1.0
Probably one of the worst pitches i have read on Kickstarter. And that from a "pro" outfit. No video, no concept art, no game (only one comment by the team that the video on BBC shows the game running in the background). The pitch mostly talks about past games and achievements.

Frontier also does not have the best track records as a studio - lay-offs only a while ago and a cancelled project (Outsider). I wonder if there is a reason no publisher has picked this title up and Frontier instead focuses on Kinect and iOS. IMO Braben is clinging on to a dream here.

While i would love to see another Elite game, i think this is another Duke Nukem Forever in the making and a release date of 2014 with just over 1 million GBP does not really make me believe it could be a great game. I think Chris Roberts' pitch is more realistic and also more intruiging.

Posted:A year ago

#3
I like Elite, but i really wonder if it will be produced on time on budget with the right resources. As Andreas says, above I think Chris Roberts has something deliverable, has already a work in progress element that can fire up the imagination of folks.

Posted:A year ago

#4

Liam Wong

13 0 0.0
I agree with Andreas.

A great project for a UK Kickstarter, but no video, no pics... 1.25m? I think that's pretty poor coming from such a well-known developer. I can't be the only one who only backs projects which have a decent pitch? Here's hoping they update it.

Posted:A year ago

#5
I'd agree with some of the others here. Not quite sure what he's pitching, but it seems to me to be a blurb based on appealing to sentiment and asking people to fund the risk while the developer rakes in what profit there is from it. I'm sure if David really believed in it, then he'd be able to raise the money easily enough instead of going down the Kickstarter route - can't imagine he's short a bob or two.

Posted:A year ago

#6

Dave Herod
Senior Programmer

517 731 1.4
"We're using Kickstarter both as a means of test-marketing the concept to verify there is still interest in such a game that extends beyond the individuals who regularly contact me about the game, and raising the funds to do so," explained Frontier's Braben.
The cynical side of me thinks he's just sick of having people pester him to make another Elite so he's put this up there to say "well go on then, put your money where your mouth is". Probably hoping it'll fail so he can go "see, now stop asking". :)

Posted:A year ago

#7

Alex O'Dwyer
Animator

162 155 1.0
I really want to help fund this.......but with Star Citizen out there too....

Elite Frontier was one of the biggest games of my childhood. I get the impression that for David Braben Elite is a personal thing, which is why it has been slowly developed in the background at Frontier for decades, but Elite 4 has been so long promised and so little has been said about it. I'm not sure.

Posted:A year ago

#8
Who knows how many times Elite has tried to be resurrected....it could be with the recent focus on Outsider, it was make or break...

Posted:A year ago

#9
Glad that DB is going for a kickstarter - but I would need some transparency in what is being proposed and the site is light on detail. Questions are is it true that some of this funding has to pay off a large publisher that retained the rights from Telecomsoft? I would also like to know the reason why the first publisher approached regarding creating this latest title turned down the prospect?

I had the pleasure of reviewing the original title as a fledgling BBC Computer reviewer, and had links to Acornsoft - I just wonder if living off of past glories with rose tinted glasses can still turn a coin?

Posted:A year ago

#10

Jed Ashforth
Senior Game Designer, Immersive Technology Group

90 140 1.6
Also agree with Andreas.

I'm not sold on Kickstarter yet anyway, but it would seem super-foolish to pledge money to this when Braben (a) should surely be able to raise funding anyway (especially just 1.25m), (b) hasn't made an effort to 'sell' the pitch in any way, and (c) has a track record of tortuously slow development on this particular IP.

And Fran, that's exactly where my mind went too!

Posted:A year ago

#11
And because there is no risk what soever to the developer once the target is achieved, it could be a nice holiday for everyone to kick in the sand. who knows...but at least Star Citizen has a more concertized vision

Posted:A year ago

#12

Nicholas Lovell
Founder

179 120 0.7
Wow, what a very cynical set of responses

Posted:A year ago

#13

Peter Dwyer
Games Designer/Developer

458 254 0.6
@Nicholas

Not cynical just realistic. His pitch is basically "Give me money and I may, if I can be bothered, do another Elite or something like that but, I'm not too sure"

Frontier has shown itself to be large on ambition and quite frankly poor on delivery and realism. It's almost as if Braben has gotten to the point where he thinks the industry owes him free money because he once did a game called Elite (may have had some major help from a guy called Bell but, you wouldn't know that from the attitude).

Posted:A year ago

#14

Steve Nicholls
Programmer

69 31 0.4
Bad pitch... Anyway there is already a game called Dangerous that is also a space trading game and its rather good and has been out a good while. I hope they don't think they can just ignore this fact and potentially damage the developers.

Sadly Braben and co completely ignored the question when asked via twitter and email by the developers.

Posted:A year ago

#15

Login or register to post

Take part in the GamesIndustry community

Register now