Ah, Star Citizen– you’re one of the few things in this industry that has remained inevitable, remained constant in this industry over these last few years. Development on this crowdfunded game has been ongoing for a ridiculously long period of time, and yet it seems no closer to launch. Even Squadron 42, its single player campaign, was supposed to get a beta this year– but that never came, which led to deserved backlash, which in turn led to non-committal responses by the developers.
The developers are now doing the smart thing (or at least smarter than what they have been doing up until now), with director Chris Roberts having announced in a recently published blog update that Cloud Imperium won’t be sharing any new gameplay footage from Squadron 42, nor talk about rough launch window estimates, until the game is actually close to release.
“For most games it is typical to not even announce the project until about 12 months out and only start building awareness with marketing 6 months before launch,” Roberts wrote. “The issues with showing gameplay, locations or assets on a narratively driven game this early are twofold. First, a marketing campaign can only last so long and second, there is only so much of the gameplay that we can show before release as we want you to experience a really engrossing story. If we show the non-spoiler gameplay now, that’s prime footage and gameplay that could have been used closer to release. It is better to treat Squadron 42 like a beautifully wrapped present under the tree that you are excited to open on Christmas Day, not knowing exactly what is inside, other than that it’s going to be great.
“Because of this I have decided that it is best to not show Squadron 42 gameplay publicly, nor discuss any release date until we are closer to the home stretch and have high confidence in the remaining time needed to finish the game to the quality we want.”
Given how long many people have been waiting for this to come out, this is bound to be frustrating- but the reasons definitely makes sense here. Here’s hoping that next big gameplay update will be accompanied by a release date announcement, and that it won’t be too far away.