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Jethro

The 1.0 Release: Lack of Communication and Disappointment

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Hi,

From an observers point of view I'm worried that I paid for a hit and run on steam and this is now dead. I understand things can get delayed but I remember when I bought this the dev plan was to release an alpha version every month, its now been 2 and a half months since 5, with minor fixes between but that was even a month ago now.

Since then the Dev plan page has been cleared out on the website and theres no updates as to whether anything is even being worked on, this seems to me like a pretty bad indicator that we're going to see anymore of this. Honestly I wish I hadn't bought into it, its put me off buying early access games on steam. I just hope our faith in DF wasn't misplaced, and if they are actually working on it but not releasing anything then they should be updating us more just so we know. It would help dispel all the negative comments on steam as not many people seem to be feeling very positive about it at the moment.

This isn't intended as a rant, just a concerned customer.

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since this will probably be deleted as my first and only post here.

i want to say first that i always thought this game was good because it was double fine.

sadly enough, when you do an early access, half of that is enough.

you do a few patches and additions to a very meager base, a troublesome silence and now...1.0

i was telling people i know, that would love this game to wait and see.

i wanted to give them the game when it got closer to completion,but this?

sorry, i can not give this game to someone and call it complete.

i am not going to shout at you,hate you or any of that stuff.

if you want to call this game complete,go ahead.

i say you are throwing away a lot of money.

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You're pulling the plug?

No, it's more of an official release.

I don't think SpaceBase is at all ready for release however, unless they mean 1.0 as a milestone...

Don't get me wrong, I enjoy Spacebase and all, but at the moment it's too lacking, and too full of bugs to consider a release in my opinion. Which, has me concerned...

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We’ll of course be sticking around a bit for bug fixing and support, but any new content for the game will now be in your hands.

That's what I would call "pulling the plug".

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One of the first things I remember them talking about is that as long as they are getting revenue from the game (i.e., people buying it), they'd continue development. My guess after being out for a year, they don't expect a huge influx of new players. Giving avid players the reins to mod the game is a great alternative to just letting it be stagnant. I'm glad it's reaching a milestone; I haven't played it since Alpha 4 and was waiting for a more official release. Looking forward to it.

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Can we consider the possibility that the devs are several builds ahead of 6e? As far as we know, "next month" could be October 31st, and that's five weeks away. Alpha 6 had five builds in six days.

I know, I know, the game has several critical bugs. and another couple hundred under the table as well. But, if they can refine some kind of "endgame", and fix the Security cowardice, the fire extinguisher problem, the priorities for building and maintenance, the "let's exercise on the airlock and kill everyone" bug, the "I'm bleeding on the floor while the doctor is eating a carrot" bug, the miners dumping rocks, the Security ignoring tantrums, the lost queued jobs, the...

... okay, I'm terrible as the devil's advocate. I'm a bit worried too. Five weeks... it's gonna be close.

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You're pulling the plug?
Thats the way I take it. How do you go from Alpha to Release without ever going into Beta? I'm sorry but a month of bug fixing isn't going to make this game complete. It feels like a rush to get it out the door to be done with it. I'll wait until release to pass final judgement, but releasing the source code right after launch seems like there won't be anymore updates after launch and that Double Fine is hoping the players flesh out the game for them. I'm hoping I'm wrong.

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While I'm already happy with my purchase, and will continue to enjoy the game, I'm slightly disappointed that some of the "we might possibly do these" features were never included. Of course I would have loved to see multi-level bases, teleporters, planet exploration, and a few other features that were mentioned as possibilities. But I understand why plenty of stuff couldn't be included.

I agree that it still feels a bit lacking, but hopefully we can get some good mod content. I just hope there are enough people playing that are interested in modding.

Honestly, as long as they deliver the bug fixes and polish they are promising, I'm totally happy. I've already put a lot of time into this game, and I'll probably put much, much more time into it.

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The game is wonderful for an alpha. The fun I've had with it so far was already worth the pricetag. But it does have a lot of unrealized potential, too.

It is a little unusual to go straight from alpha to 1.0 without a beta.

Apparently they are also releasing the game's full source code? That's unusual - what sort of license will be attached to it? In principle, that would allow modders to do anything that the devs themselves could do.

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Can we consider the possibility that the devs are several builds ahead of 6e? As far as we know, "next month" could be October 31st, and that's five weeks away. Alpha 6 had five builds in six days.

I know, I know, the game has several critical bugs. and another couple hundred under the table as well. But, if they can refine some kind of "endgame", and fix the Security cowardice, the fire extinguisher problem, the priorities for building and maintenance, the "let's exercise on the airlock and kill everyone" bug, the "I'm bleeding on the floor while the doctor is eating a carrot" bug, the miners dumping rocks, the Security ignoring tantrums, the lost queued jobs, the...

... okay, I'm terrible as the devil's advocate. I'm a bit worried too. Five weeks... it's gonna be close.

If they were several builds ahead of us, then we'd have their said updates and bug fixes. :P And... More content too. I'd say the only advantage devs have is the latest unstable build, or stable build, however far along they've got in their own debugging.

Cutting it close, yes they would be. Unfortunately though, Spacebase at the moment, UI, polish, and glitches... Spacebase just simply isn't ready for release yet. 5 weeks isn't enough time. It's unfortunate to state, that there's a severe lack of content too. :(

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I am really enjoying this game, but I have to agree with everybody else. If they were announcing that the game would be done after a couple more updates, I could believe that. As the game is now, it is certainly not worth full price. As it is we only have a couple of plants to grow, only one actual food icon, barely any decorations, and plenty of bugs.

I am disappointed. I really had faith, but unless they have been holding back a lot of stuff, this game isn't finished and it's a bit much just to assume the community will finish it.

It does kinda explain why this update was so massive compared to the others.

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Alpha 6 have added lot's of performance issues for me on OSX and how the security acts now more or less is a guaranteed base breakdown whenever raiders or parasites come along.

Besides fixing these two game breaking things I think there should be at least a couple more alphas, adding content to reach a higher level, then a beta period to squish additional bugs before it's ready for release a 1.0.

I have and are enjoying playing spacebase but I feel its only half a game at this point.

Lot's of love and appreciation

Aptass

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That's it?

What happened to the rest of the game?

It didn't sell enough.

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How would they know that? They do not have a product to sell. That would have been the intended result at the end of the alpha process.

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I just had a look at the original dev plan, which can be found here:

http://web.archive.org/web/20131018054131/http://spacebasedf9.com/devplans

Of note:

1) "Nothing on this list is carved in stone, and we can’t promise any date for when it might go into the game. We may decide something isn’t worth it, or an idea may mutate into another thing entirely. We’re sharing this with you because we want to give an idea of where the game is headed!"

2) At a quick count, there are about 200 things on that list.

3) Of those 200, over 90 are definitely in the game in some form, either as stated, changed in how they work, or planned (or some equivalent planned) for 1.0, and a further 30 or so I'm not familiar enough with the game to know if they are in or not.

4) In addition they added a lot of features (like fitness zones) that weren't on that initial list.

5) Of the items that didn't make it, a large portion of those are the more speculative features at the bottom of the list that we always knew were long shots.

6) The only big major features higher up the list that haven't made it in at all are: the multi-level base building category, and I don't think teleporters are in. And some of the social networking sharing features.

7) Of the rest, there are a few features which were implemented but not everything in that category made it.

I don't think they have been misleading at any stage about what may or may not be in the game, and I think they've added a very large proportion of what they said they were going to add, a few things they didn't plan for initially, and obviously their priority was focused towards essentials first.

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One of the Steam users:

"raskolnik Vor 52 Minuten

Step 1: Gather that sweet Kickstarter cash by being called DoubleFine.

Step 2: Release broken skeleton of a game, allow modding so the community does your job for you. Call this a "feature."

Step 3: Profit."

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not sure if this will be considered related to the game but i thought I'd share my thought out-loud regardless, i suspect that the reason 1.0 is coming so soon is pressure, the pressure of the company, the stress of the communities, all of the work feeling for probably diminishing gains. i believe that it's not the dev team who picked the date, but the company itself, closing the door on a game that is probably costing more to work on then it is getting back.

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Apart from that analysis of the original plan, here's my thoughts:

I first played the game in Alpha 1. I liked it but I thought 'you know what, maybe this Early Access deal isn't for me, for this game. I'm going to wait for a few releases'

So I waited, following closely, whether to jump in or not at each release.

Each Alpha got me closer and closer to wanting to dive back in, until Alpha 6 was the one that made me think 'Okay, I'm ready for this game'. But then I saw that there were a lot of bug issues still being worked through, and I thought - Okay, let's wait a little longer for that to settle down.

To me, turning this into 1.0 is probably not only a decision driven by economics - at some point they just have to stop paying people for making this game, but it's also the right point, as long as they spend the time to address the severest bugs.

Alpha 6 felt to me, going from the videos, as the first time that the game was behaving like the game I imagined in my head back in alpha 1, where everything was starting to tell a bit more of a story and have a bit more personality. Assuming they have to set the cut-off for 1.0 somewhere, this seems like the right place to do it, to me. To add some newbie friendly features, fix bugs, and call it, here.

I'd love some of the more outlandish stuff to have made it, but I'm by no means disappointed with the stage they've managed to get it to, and I will definitely be diving in again at 1.0.

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This game is not getting released. It is getting abandoned. And you can see that as clear as the days sky, because there hasn't been a Beta yet and the dev plan stays unfulfilled.

And yes. I guarantee you that they have pulled the plug. I don't understand what is happening in the dev leaders heads.

We’re also pleased to announce we’ll be releasing the game’s full Lua source code a short time after 1.0, which will allow the community to create potentially far-ranging mods that add content, new features, and change some fundamental game behaviors. We’ll of course be sticking around a bit for bug fixing and support, but any new content for the game will now be in your hands. We’re eager to see what people do with this game!

So as it is very obvious: The game itself will be kinda finished in form of the graphics engine mechanics and.... MAYBE the bugs...

But all the promised stuff will disappear and NOW I know why the developers did delete the dev-plan. Because the developers plan was a promise that they have to fulfill at release. So... everyone who bought the game after the dev-plan was deleted, had NOT seen that promises. This behaviour is described as "false advertising" in law... and we have the right to get at least a part of our money back with the percentage of the fulfilled goals. (Does anybody have a screenshot of the dev-plan?)

I am not even sure, WHY DoubleFine decided to put a deadline to this project... Maybe because of financial reasons, maybe because of ressource management problems (only 4 developers working on the game) and they wanted to focus their resources on another project, maybe because it is too hard for them to program a complex strategy game, maybe because some people left the company...

BUT THIS MAKES ME REALLY, REALLY ANGRY!

WHY????

BECAUSE THEY ARE STILL LYING TO US AND NOT TELLING US THE BLOODY REASON!

From what I have read in the article "the road to 1.0".... THEY STILL DON'T TELL US ANYTHING! We have backed this project! AND YOU DON'T TELL US WHY YOU DECIDE TO SET A DEADLINE AND MOST IMPORTANTLY: YOU DON'T EVEN SAY SORRY FOR THAT ONCE!!!

No. They try to give us the picture that everything is going as planned and the game will get "polished" and "finished" and that there will be more features.... from the community...

Not even one word of saying sorry for not adding these features by themselves! They tell us the game has been a success and act like they say "thank you for support" and not goodbye or sorry...

Just to give you a few examples:

Big news everyone!
.... Not "Bad news"?
It’s been a pleasure sharing this experience
... So are you going somewhere or what?
[...] this timeline-infographic to show how far we come since Early Access release and what new stuff you can expect
..... So you wanna convince me of how much you guys have done and not make you any accusations, hmmm?
new features will be aimed at providing the complete experience you’d expect of a non-Early Access game: a Tutorial mode to smooth out the early game a bit and help new players learn the basics, and a Goal system that lets you work towards concrete objectives
...I expect much, much more of a non-Early-Access-game...
We’re also pleased to announce
... .... "also pleased"....So all of this really pleases you, he? Yeah, all of us will be so happy!
We’ll be releasing the game’s full Lua source code a short time after 1.0, which will allow the community to create potentially far-ranging mods that add content
.... I CAN'T PROGRAM! HOW THE **** SHOULD I MAKE MODS FOR THIS GAME? Besides this: Releasing the full code means that EVERYONE WHO PAYED FOR THIS GAME HAS PAYED FOR SOMETHING THAT WILL NOW BE AVAILABLE FOR FREE AND WASTED HIS MONEY!!!
To those who purchased the game early on and donated extra for the “Famous Citizen”, “Stargazer”, and “Extradimensional Entity” tiers: all customer names will be in-game for 1.0, and before long we’ll unveil the poster and art print we’ll be sending out to those customers. Spoiler alert: THEY’RE LOOKING BEAUTIFUL!
...Translation: Please don't be angry, you get a poster! And it will be beautiful like you!
We’re extremely grateful for the support and feedback you’ve given us so far. Thank you for making all this possible.
... Yeah, we made an unfinished game possible, with developers that are still too scared to tell us what really happend behind drawn curtains.

Here is my opinion on this: I have no idea why you guys at Double Fine do this, because you got enough money from Kickstarter from what I have seen. You can't expect a game to get really popular and well-bought if you just have a simple building structure and not so many features. If you decide to abandon the game now, DoubleFine, then you will not just leave an unfinished project. You will leave those people behind who decided to trust your company and abilities. Do you think these people will EVER buy a game from DF again? Or talk about your games with their friends and advertise them?

You either give this project a WAY LONGER DEADLINE, or you will lose around 5000 backers of your company, you will have to pay back the amount of money you made through false advertisement, you will lose your reputation and you will probably go bankrupt in the future because nobody buys your games and nobody will trust any other project of your company....

And to the developers, like LeBreton, Ben and all the others who wrote so many nice answers and communicated with us in the forums: I don't think DoubleFine will behave better to you than to us backers and users and I wonder if they will drop you as easily as they dropped this game. I WISH YOU GUYS THE BEST!

I know that JP is lying to us in this "statement of the time", please don't be feared and give us a hint of what is really happening there. You can even write me a PM, or if the messages are stored in this forum, write an e-mail to luxlighter@yahoo.de.

Besides all this: If you try to release the game in this state and to sell it to people who think this is a full game... I will start a vote to kick this game off Steam. You can get on Steam with Steam Greenlight and the help of the community, but the community can also kick you off there, I already asked some people from Steam via e-mail if this is possible. If you wanna release games there as a company in the future, you better be either honest or say goodbye to the Steam community.

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I don't think it's a good idea to release this game on it's current state (I don't think it will change that much in the upcoming month), and I hope they won't charge 22€ for it and call it a finished and full featured product.

If you have to pull the plug then that's okay, shit happens, pull the plug. But by selling this on the Steam Store it really looks like you're hoping to deceive some clueless customers and recover some of the money invested on the failed project. Those who paid for the early access were aware of the risks.

It's a bummer, because the game is charming and it looked promising. But players of this genre have high expectations and standards regarding content and features.

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Problem is: How will they know if people are interested in the game if they never really finish it? And despite that, they haven't even told us the reason why they close it. We are just walking in the dark...

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I don't think it's a good idea to release this game on it's current state (I don't think it will change that much in the upcoming month), and I hope they won't charge 22€ for it and call it a finished and full featured product.

If you have to pull the plug then that's okay, shit happens, pull the plug. But by selling this on the Steam Store it really looks like you're hoping to deceive some clueless customers and recover some of the money invested on the failed project. Those who paid for the early access were aware of the risks.

It's a bummer, because the game is charming and it looked promising. But players of this genre have high expectations and standards regarding content and features.

I totally agree.

I don't think the developer broke any promises as they stated clearly on the dev plan page:

Spacebase DF-9 is a detailed simulation game, and we’re constantly improving and adding to it. Because space contains everything, there’s an almost infinite number of things we could add to the game! Because we have limited time and resources, we have to make hard choices about what’s important. Below is a giant list of all the things we might possibly do at some point.

Nothing on this list is carved in stone, and we can’t promise any date for when it might go into the game. We may decide something isn’t worth it, or an idea may mutate into another thing entirely. We’re sharing this with you because we want to give an idea of where the game is headed!

however, I was hoping for much more content .. and more things from that list to make it into the final game.

For people like me who bought it in Early Access are aware of the risk and willing to support the project. But for someone buying a full release its overpriced for the current content.

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Incredibly disappointing. I will be much more cautious of "early access" support in the future. I knew going in that something like this could happen but I didn't expect it from DF.

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Nothing on this list is carved in stone, and we can’t promise any date for when it might go into the game. We may decide something isn’t worth it, or an idea may mutate into another thing entirely.

They didn't decide that an idea isn't worth it and we have never seen a part of this process of deciding from the devs, neither a reason why the ideas wouldn't be worth it. They decided to put down the game developmetn for some unknown reason, but are presenting it as the "final release" of the full game, which would give them the opportunity to still sell this game, because it is "finished", instead of putting the sale process down as well as the development and they are also disguising that they end the development of the game not because the game is ready for release, but because there are resource problems at some point. And when we read this text, we assume that at least 65% of the items on the list will appear in the game.

Nobody there mentioned that the there could be less than the half of the promised things, because there are production issues, but the developers wanted to give us an explanation of "where the game is headed" and I don't see that it headed anywhere near from what they have promised to do at least partially, while they now want to release "the FULL game" and it isn't full of those things that they promised to do. As somebody mentioned here. They have fulfilled less than 90 goals from 200 which is not even a 50% mark. So when they say they release the full game... it is a lie! Because there is not even 50% of the content in it which they used to advertise this game.

Saying this game is ready for release and that you are happy about it is - I repeat it again - false advertisement!

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Well your big red text in capital letters certainly convinced me...

/sarcasm

That would be irony, not sarcasm.

Sarcasm is a form of irony, and I certainly intended both.

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