Should we fight against the "Plato's Cave" effect in Star Citizen?
"Nobody cares about what the average development time for a game is. We only care about what was promised. Period. End of story" - Derek Smart
And the answer from the minority louder of die-hard fans of Star Citizen that works like watchdogs in the internet against any tip of criticism or questioning to that game, for that and all other valid points is like:
"Nooooo! Evil Derek! I don't want to see anything! I have fear that my dream won't come true or knowing that I was actually deceived for years by Roberts while he gets richer and richer! Let me stay inside the Matrix! Roberts must to be the true Messiah! He must to be! Real world is ugly! Let me inside the Matrix"
These fans (which are far to represent all the backers sentiment, and are just a louder minority, highly invested in the game, in general) are acting like this:
Plato already knew.
The rage against Derek Smart, created by this loud minority, but capable to make noise to pretend that are in larger numbers or represent the around 300k-700k customers that bought SC packages (something between these values, considering all those people buying multiple packages for years already, to give to friends for free) is basically because he is not a person who came and asked politely to Roberts and co. to share what they actually promised to share, per their own TOS, in case of failing to release the game by the end of 2014 + 1 year (in other words Nov 2015), as originally wrote in the original TOS (yes, they changed that clause later, adding 6 months more and with that, you learn how shady they can be - "For the avoidance of doubt" was the expression that they started that clause).
He did not ask, using the standard disclaimer that fans use when wiling to talk to Mr. Roberts, that the CEO of Cloud Imperium Games, is the ultimate god, a messiah, who will save us all of the evil venture capitalists (because seasonal sales of in-game items that does not exist for a game that does not exist, by prices varying from 3 to 33 times the price of the copy of the game, is only something that a good guy, who does not care with money would do right? Or setting his salary way above the average of the market, as well as from his near friends/family hired... nope, everyone is evil, he is the messiah... ok?).
He definitely shouldn't have said that things sounds wrong even knowing, as a game developer, that they obviously are. He should refrain himself of his knowledge, his experience (it's actually the ultimate sin to have experience in game development, when you have to discuss about the SC game development) and he should act, like a clueless fan, that just believe in whatever Roberts said, praise Roberts and co., and then, after half of his missive was about praising Roberts, putting the question (in the middle of it, because you don't want to make that so clear to many people read, after all, you don't want to "flame" Roberts or his fans with those stupid legit questions that any legit customer would make, but, that could sound not good enough to be asked and listened, due PR.
With this approach, the fanboys would return to him, politely trolling him, and saying "politely" that he is entitled and CIG shouldn't listen. And CIG would follow the same answer, to show that are in the same page with those people who print money for them. Some would call him troll anyway, goons, troublemaker, working in an evil plot, etc. etc, regardless. Depending of how you persist, CIG would embrace that and would demonize the person too.
If it was not Derek Smart, if it was an article from media, the media outlet would be classified as "the ultimate evil paid by EA to trash Star Citizen" ("nobody reads that anyway!" kinds of answers).
And all that, because "they don't want to know the true" (quotes in purpose). Basically, they don't want transparency. Basically, what sounds from all their reaction is that they KNOW what is going on and KNOW that is ugly, but, they have fear that all their friends and all the people that was attracted both, by their speech and the speech of Roberts about the game, discover that, what probably they already noticed since long ago.
But they sleep well because it's like "ok, it's a necessary evil to lie to people, etc. etc."
And they come with all the sensationalism against anyone who criticize or make questions, because, that is the only thing that they are capable of. They can't and know that they can't seriously defend what CIG has been doing, how they behave and how they dismiss their own promises.
"Because crowdfunding blablabla"... Like CIG false advertising and deception was what crowdfunding is about.
So, basically that is what is happening, and that's what you see the die-hard fans (the absolute minority of the Star Citizen backers) angry with Derek.
It's their exclusive party, after all. All this. The "Ship Collector" game... the "sharing" of behind the scenes... they do not want the game so hard as they want the show. Because they are fans. Just like you would like to spend more time with your idol, that singer, or artist, or football player, they want more time with Roberts. And if Roberts, the idol, the god, answer them, one day, says "hi <insert_fan_username>", any of their pathetic/useless questions or praises made in the forums, or any co. of Roberts do that (guys who are quickly transformed in idols just because are there, and quickly demonized if they go away from there, depending of the way that they leave), well... for them, THIS, is what pay the price of thousands of dollars inserted in the pockets of the man.
In the end of the day... passion... which blind those people or lead them to think that whatever is necessary, should be made, including getting the people's money based in a lot of stories and one or two years later, if the person start to doubt that those promises will be fulfilled they are called idiots, and then, a few months/years later when the promise is not fulfilled, the same guys will call you idiot again. In summary, don't question Roberts attitude/decisions or you are an idiot.
And maybe, just maybe, as many evidences indicates, Roberts and co. (not all devs I am sure) are playing with them, for money. And even playing with the devs (that is what making they spend more time in meaningless stuff (seven times remaking skeleton or menu helmet are just a few examples that were quoted in the Kotaku article: http://kotaku.com/why-star-citizen-is-taking-so-long-1724835913).
Maybe Roberts knows (just as the majority of the peers that does not have ties with Roberts, but know about game development) that whatever he makes, the game won't live to the hype created. They pushed the boundaries of the hype and individual expenses of backers, both in time, money and patience. Ignoring what all that will cause is not living in the real world and not understanding the game market.
But if people are willing to print money, for whatever, why the hell he would deny to accept? Well, he would. If he cared with minimizing the number of disappointed people. Like David Braben did in his development, when he actually could sell overpriced ships to take advantage of the moment, as well as been suggested by backers, but he didn't. Because he was responsible enough with his own business and cared more with customer satisfaction, instead, "whatever, we can't please everyone anyway... but let's get all their money" - which appears to be the motto of Chris Roberts, not said, but by actions, which speaks louder than speech.
But there is a way to end all the doubt for good and earn reputation and reliability not just from a bunch of "yes man" folks, but from everyone, so they really be respectful enough, to one day, maybe, to really become a "game changer": Accountability.
So. It does not really matter "the way that you ask" when you know that you will be denied, because these people want to hide, what you know, that if going to a court of law, all things considered brought there, CIG will have to show you. Irrelevant thoughts of people who will simply always consider a sin to question their idol.
So, yes. I applaud Derek Smart, or press, or whoever be the backer who pursuit that, who raises questions. Don't let these minorities screaming to let you down guys. This industry needs more devs acting just like DS is doing. Because if nothing is wrong, there is nothing to be worried about. Period.
And if CIG had followed a path where they shown that care and respect customers, instead demonizing dissents, I doubt that Derek would do anything or go further, as he didn't or pursuit other games that are also "competitors". He is actually treating the company with more respect that he and other people who questioned the company were treated by them (If was me leading all this, I would open a lawsuit without trying to negotiate anything with people that does not deserve such respect, for everything that they do with non-fanboys, but that is just me, which despite trying to help that team, I was totally disrespected in the worst way, but amateur members of that team, because they did not know how to handle feedback for improvement - they don't think that needed to improve themselves - just empty speech when they say that, I know, and the own history of this project already shown).
But if there is wrong doing, at this case, we should know, before more people be scammed and/or disappointed by total lack of responsibility of CIG demonstrated with customer satisfaction, since they simply don't care with whatever they said earlier and will change things if that means more dollars in their pockets (things that barely have anything to do with development needs). And yes, they could be just worried to get richer for a good retirement. In what world those fans live that think that this is an absurd? Evidences show that this seems the case, at least for the main leaders, and the denial to prove these evidences wrong, is telling.
So, congratulations by the effort Mr. Derek and all those others fighting with you, or even in other groups without connection with yours, for real transparency.
There is no such thing of "private company" that these people try to argue, when a crowd-funding campaign is failing to deliver into this promise. And if Derek Smart or others don't act, eventually, Feds will anyway. They did, for projects with less impact to the whole business. Guess what to a behemoth of almost 90+ million dollars. FTC already set this standard, even before laws that are in the works to come. So, who says the contrary are been silly and living in denial.
And this is all about a customer complaint when doing business with a company, which involves services and a product to be delivered to them. People act like if "getting Roberts assassinating children" would be the only way to prove him making deceptive marketing, or raising suspicions about a scam, which are far to be enough to open a case, and have it investigated further. This is not how this things work and I am surprised by the ignorance of people and simple lack of logic, after all, if it was that difficult to demonstrate deceptive marketing/false advertising and other customer issues to open a case, no company ever would be sued, since they all have more means than usual customers, to provide evidences. So, the evidences from Smart, are far from enough. Then CIG will have to prove they wrong, and hardly will have any means to require Smart to pay the expenses, because all his demands and doubts are legit, corroborate by the own contradictory statements of CIG, that they refused to explain properly, and his good faith was demonstrated many times, when going an trying hard, to avoid the thing to go to a lawsuit, while CIG always refused to colaborate, acting in total ego and been hostile (Because they seem to think that are more than a company doing business with customers, but are celebrities or something more (gods?), that should be not questioned).
But Feds take longer to act sometimes and that will result in more damage if wrong doing exists.
So, I understand perfectly why is important to hurry with this, even considering that those guys apparently are preparing a new show of illusions, delivering a bunch of additional tech demos to keep people busy for a long long time, selling more and more virtual bs of luxury price and other expensive meaningless items for the addicted fans who hijacked the project, so only their wish be attended, and as it means more money, CIG did not deny, because not all people care with impacts for their company/project, when they see free money in front of them. So, they will take more and more advantage of people's passion/addiction, and making up new excuses, while the rest, due this minority of whales or evangelized fans, havet o wait more and more all the party of falsity and lies.
People want what was promised. And Chris Roberts disrespect their backers, many of them, probably the majority, when he generalizes and say that he is doing what the backers asked for. No. Those fanboys don't represent the majority of the backers. So, please, stop to lie in public, Mr. Robert. People does not want a show that only for a few whales care to watch (as the own numbers of viewers, forum participants, etc., proven again and again - if you are a backer or interested person in doubt about this data, just go there to the RSI website and start to notice, if you kept your eyes blind for that until this point).
So, keep up the good fight Derek and co.
Those guys from CIG asked for it. They pushed the boundaries of customer respect, in the name of attending the wishes only of a few whales and fanboys, who keep saying that talks for everyone. And if money calls, as these people told in the past, just look to how those sales have been dropping and only grows if CIG put more ships on sale, since a long time, showing that is more like the same die-hard fans buying all them, again and again.
CIG answers for an action in good faith, from a legit customers talking in the name of other legit customers, with arrogance and with disrespect and that only gives them credits by going further to ask that this ugly situation be remediated. CIG did not keep their promises, they made bait-and-switch, they were and continue to be deceptive and dishonest (and all that is public record, if you want to know about evidences of that, just read the Derek Smart blogs, since they bring enough - and do not make mistake - there is more beyond of what is described there - a lot more).
There is no way that a legit customer, that in some point loved the idea of this project, but that is not blind won't be furious with that. If for you lack perspective to see how you are blind, just imagine that the same was made by the competitor of CIG, or EA, or whatever other player in this industry. The SC fans would be the first to show dissent online and trash them, and don't silly... you know that.
CIG is not been responsible with the game industry and with the crowdfunding, as they should be, in the moment that they took the leadership of the banner, in financial terms. Liking them or not of the situation, they should understand that if you assume such position, your example become even more important. Instead, they are trying to spread that a bad practice, disrespect of laws and customers, is something to be followed and applauded.
And all that this example of CIG is doing is making the crowdfunding crashing and burning with less and less people trusting, mainly in indies with projects more reasonable and doable, which is sad. No matter what appears in Kickstarter these days, you can clearly see how more difficult is becoming to be funded. It should be the contrary. But let's live in denial and take just the numbers of these devs that so far, are just spokesman that did not deliver anything of value, to make an evaluation that the crowdfunding is "growing", shall we? Tell that for all those indies with doable projects that are not seen the light of the day, or with much more difficult, because these "celebrities" already burned the crowdfunding trust, due their lack of responsibility.
These people - the die-hard fans and/or ignorant followers misinformed about many things related to customers rights and the own project that they put their money into, still the minority of the backers - still support other projects.
But they are a minority of the potential public that could be believing more in crowdfunding, and their attitude "hijack" the model just for them, because other people never will trust on this system, if these bad practices start to be considered as good practices... if the crowdfunding developers were more responsible with their advertising and promises made, instead trying to transform this in a Church business, which will never work to make it grow and only will cause legal issues, just as is now about to happen with CIG.
That your class lawsuit prevails Derek Smart and co. or that Feds act, in case of CIG do not answer in their last chance of a persistent try. No, they don't deserve an angry customer, which angry was caused by their disrespect, their celebrity complex, to treat them well. State to the facts. They are in debt. They must to treat you and any other customer like a king. Not the customers treating them like gods. So, don't follow the "sheep" behavior that those people ask.
All have been tried for that and their ego and the fan ego, selfish thoughts, was major than responsibility, insight. So people that accuse you of wrong-doing are lying. You tried. First particularly. Then in public. And for months. No answer, except attacks of CIG against you.
Any customer issue only would be dismissed in a court of law, after so many things to back you up, if the company shown good faith after so many asks. Instead, they tried to dumb-down people about their rights, considering the situation, and tried to demonize customers with these legit concerns. If that is not bad faith on business, there is such no bad faith on business. Well... except that, there is.
This is major than Derek Smart, than me, than press. We can't let this party of nonsense continue. .
Accountability yes! And if there is wrong doing, that CIG or at least those responsible for that inside CIG, be burned as an example, maybe giving the helm to people with more reason and customer focus/respect.
If no wrong doing is happening, still you guys wouldn't be guilty of anything, except pursuit your rights to know, and CIG was also wrong to lead you to get that through a lawsuit, when THEY promised to share, "For the avoidance of doubt".
They did not accomplish, changed the clause, so, they can complain of customers in doubt. Nor them, neither the fans. Mainly when they transformed a clause, in just another bait, just another element of false advertising.
Regardless your past, or approval in your work done that you have with these people, that simply does not matter. You could be an unlettered, you could be a total ignorant, even if you were some kind of convicted person due some crime, free in parole, if you bought into this, or any other customer product/service/project, you still would have your right that should be respected by the company, who provided you/promised you something and failed to keep it, just producing convenient excuses. So, all these accusations to your personal job or person itself, means absolutely nothing.
So, anyone that will accuse you of anything are been nothing else than silly. Keep up the good fight! These people are just passionate and clueless about their own rights, that they refuse to embrace and prefer denial. They don't represent the majority of the customer wishes for the game industry, or even the SC backers.
Should we fight to convince all those die-hard fans? Obviously not. They are irrelevant to the great scheme of the things. They are, actually, and ironically, the great part of the issue that made this project taking the wrong path. They have their merits yes, and should be applauded at the beginning for their effort, but then, with their success came the arrogance, ego, proud, they lost themselves, motivated by a lost man: Chris Roberts.
Those people in the Plato's Cave will stay there. They are hopeless. They are far from help. This is all for the rest of the backers, for the rest of the game industry, including its customers and game developers.
This "church of false game development show business" shit that those people are trying to make a standard and only will end in a disaster, got to go!
THAT IS NOT, SERIOUS GAME DEVELOPMENT!