• Crazy
  • Cool
  • Awesome
  • Angry
  • Happy
  • Hungry
  • Sad
  • Shy
  • Tired
  • User Tag List

    Dislikes Dislikes:  0
    Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
    Results 1 to 10 of 13

    Thread: The Elite:Dangerous Bait-And-Switch

    Hybrid View

    Previous Post Previous Post   Next Post Next Post
    1. #1
      TXU Jr. Member ytene's Avatar
      Credits
      401.70
      Points
      841
      is Quite Bonkers
       
      I am:
      Crazy
       
      Total Contributions For

      ytene      £ 475.00
      Main InfoStatus and ThingsPoints and CreditsOther
      Join Date
      13-10-2007
      Posts
      95

      Default The Elite:Dangerous Bait-And-Switch

      Hello X-Universers...

      I wanted to share a little news with you regarding the up-coming release of Elite : Dangerous.

      On Friday 14th November, in the latest in a series of newsletters to followers of this game, Frontier Developments announced [buried in the middle of a paragraph 3/4 of the way down the newsletter] that the "Single Player" version of the game was moving from "stand-alone" to being "always-on, network connected". In other words, it will not be possible to play the game on a PC that is not connected to the internet. This represents a complete 180 from the information provided in the Kickstarter campaign prospectus, and from all the information and materials that Frontier have delivered up until that point in time. Note that the final boxed set of the game is due to ship and be in stores by December 16th - so a Nov 14th announcement is just a month prior to release...

      As you can imagine, there was quite a reaction, with an angry thread starting on the Frontier Forums, an article being posted on Slashdot, and a lot of angry chatter.

      I was particularly annoyed. I personally pledged 550 to Elite : Dangerous, entirely on the basis that it would offer me a fully stand-alone game. As a result I wrote to Frontier, politely but firmly asking for a refund of my Kickstart donation. I also wrote to Kickstarter to advise them of what I considered to be specious behaviour on the part of Frontier.

      I got a reply back from Kickstarter to say, "Sorry to learn of your experience. In most cases this can be resolved by discussing with the project originator. Please raise with them first. I also got a reply back from Frontier, acknowledging my request for a refund, only to be told, "If you have downloaded and played either the Alpha or Beta, you will not get a refund".

      I consider this to be absolutely unacceptable, on the basis of the fact that we were told when testing that the Alpha and Beta could would have a lot of telemtry and monitoring code in it, to help the developers debug the game and monitor it's behaviour on a wide range of machines. It is entirely reasonable to expect that. I did not expect otherwise.

      I will be responding to Frontier to point out the flaws in their policy and to repeat my request for a refund... Will I still play the game? Possibly. I have been unimpressed with both Alpha and Beta code - they have made a game which is beautiful to look at but very complex and which is very difficult and non-intuitive to control. If I could play stand-alone, I certainly would. But the reason I wanted a stand-alone copy is that I am about to purchase a property in rural Thailand that won't even have a telephone line, much less an internet connection [just the way I want it]. This was why I wanted to invest in a stand-alone space classic...

      Hugely disappointed with both the decision, the timing of the announcement, but, most of all, with Frontier's "Screw you!" attitude.

      Oh well... that was 550 well spent - not!

      Last edited by ytene; 20-11-2014 at 11:54 AM.

    2. #2
      TXU Jr. Member ytene's Avatar
      Credits
      401.70
      Points
      841
      is Quite Bonkers
       
      I am:
      Crazy
       
      Total Contributions For

      ytene      £ 475.00
      Main InfoStatus and ThingsPoints and CreditsOther
      Join Date
      13-10-2007
      Posts
      95

      Default

      Well, I had my first reply from Frontier, which I reproduce in full, below, for your amusement... It seems that they have unilaterally decided that if their Kickstarter sponsors had actually downloaded and installed either the Alpha or Beta copies of the game, no refunds will be given... Yes, you read that right.

      Context for those not following the development of 'Dangerous... Frontier shipped both the Alpha and Beta code with, by their own declaration, extensive telemetry and monitoring code... So all testers operated on the understanding that the game would be active on the internet - heck, the only way we could install these versions was via a local "agent" that they'd written [and which is actually excellent]. What we didn't expect, of course, was for Frontier to back out of their deal with less than a month to go. I've sent them a challenge to the below, so it will be interesting to see where this goes...

      > Thank you for getting in touch with us requesting a refund due to our
      > announcement that we were not able to include an offline mode in
      > Elite: Dangerous. We are sorry you have chosen to do this but
      > understand the disappointment it has caused some people. We have
      > started responding to requests where there is a clear outcome: Those
      > who have pre-ordered a Elite: Dangerous release version from our
      > online store and have therefore not yet played the game are eligible
      > for a refund. Those who have already been playing the game online in
      > the Alpha and/or Beta phases, regardless of whether they backed the
      > project via Kickstarter or purchased access to Alpha and/or Beta
      > through our online store, are not eligible for a refund. We haven't
      > yet responded to your request as each one takes us some time to
      > investigate. We want to make sure we treat each person's situation
      > with the thoroughness it deserves, and therefore ask that you bear
      > with us over the next few working days as we look into your request.
      > Thanks in advance for your patience.
      >
      > Support
      > Frontier Developments PLC


    3. #3
      Swarmed by spaceflEyes Mangar's Avatar
      Credits
      132.93
      Points
      5,086
      is Making Holiday baskets of
      Space Fuel Jugs and Roasted
      Space Fly Baskets as gifts....
      PFfft!!!
       
      I am:
      Happy
       
      Total Contributions For

      Mangar - {M} Points for Shouts      £ 0.00
      Main InfoStatus and ThingsPoints and CreditsOther
      Join Date
      19-06-2011
      Location
      Stuck in a wormhole!!!
      Posts
      783
      Blog Entries
      5

      Default

      Thanks Ytene, seems that would be a big problem for me to even get the game now. Personally I like to play games on standalone to immerse myself in an adventure when I get the time to do it. (leave off where I leave off).

      Seems gaming companies don't realize a few things which turns off consumer demands and hurts their profits.
      1) not everyone has the greatest internet speeds and can stay online 12-18hrs a day at a premium price because
      a) They are teenagers and do not have funds to do so.
      b) Don't have the money to buy premium bandwidth over the basic connection, or worse are using a phone as a hot spot if they don't have home internet.
      c) With most other devices on a home internet like other people (family at home) watching netflix, surfing the web or listening to music WITH every other web provider WANTING app connection bogs down the service.
      d) if there is a poor speed connection in a group of good speed internet it leaves the poor guy lagging score against the others or ruin the performance of other players game play.

      I could see if a game played standalone for the buyer to enjoy it offline, then only to do Multiplayer war room games or stuff when they choose they have the time or money and home internet and $$$ allows it.

      online game services like steam are always pushing LIVE game time all the time, to me steam always pushing for a connection to load the game when I choose to play them but really a bummer when on the road, underground with no internet, or up in the mountains out of range of services. Just when you think you have 2-3 days to kill time to enjoy a game and it fails to load or play because you have no internet connection is a real purchase killer.

      SEEMS people need to just wait for a final release and not pre purchase games until they are proven what the people want.

      Lately there has been enough of these "you can keep your stand alone game play if you want" is really getting old lately and not just with elite but many game releases.

      We need people to voice an opinion of "NO MORE GRUBER GAMES" we are not stupid to buy stuff anymore, we will not give $$ to incomplete beta games until complete, like originally advertised!

      Last edited by Mangar; 01-12-2014 at 02:29 PM.

      Hmmm....there was something I wanted to mutter....must not be important after all
      [ Fluently verse in mutterings, babblings and ramblings ]

      "Never confuse education with intelligence." - unknown

    4. #4
      TXU Jr. Member ytene's Avatar
      Credits
      401.70
      Points
      841
      is Quite Bonkers
       
      I am:
      Crazy
       
      Total Contributions For

      ytene      £ 475.00
      Main InfoStatus and ThingsPoints and CreditsOther
      Join Date
      13-10-2007
      Posts
      95

      Default Latest Response from Frontier

      I had a response from Frontier regarding my issue with their removal of single player:-

      -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-
      Hi there,

      After careful consideration of your request we hereby offer you 50 to refund your purchase of the game.
      Any other benefits you may have will remain intact and associated with your account in the event that you decide to purchase the game at a future date.
      Your acceptance of this offer will indicate that this is a full and final settlement of your refund request.
      We thank you for your support of Elite: Dangerous, and hope that circumstances may allow you to play the game in future.
      When we receive your confirmation that you accept our offer we will process your refund. This may take several days to arrive. If at any time you have any questions please feel free to keep in contact.
      Alternatively, of course we would be delighted to hear that you feel able to cancel your refund request.

      Kind Regards,
      The Elite: Dangerous Support Team
      -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-
      So, in summary: I personally contributed 550 to the development of Elite : Dangerous on the basis of the fact that they promised a "stand alone" mode as a primary part of the game. 32 days before the final game is due to ship, Frontier change their minds and decide that it must be played on line.

      There is a huge outcry in the press, and it then comes to light that not only did Frontier generate 1.5MM during the initial Kickstarter campaign, they have made an additional 7.5MM by having people sign up for the Alpha and Beta test cycles. So that's a total of 9 million pounds of income so far...

      Now they write back to me, as above, and offer to refund me 50. That's not even 10%. They have failed to produce a game that meets the original specification of the Kickstarter commitment, and believe that because it's Kickstarter they are somehow absolved of any responsibility here.

      I wrote back to them, on receipt of the above, and pointed out that contractually agreeing to provide one thing, then provided another, is in fact a breach of the "Sale of Goods Act", on the basis of which I wanted a refund. I am still waiting to learn of their reply to that message.

      If I get no success with that response, I shall have no choice but to take them to "Small Claims Court". I do not believe that they should be allowed to con people out of money in the way that they have. And to claim that a single-player game is more difficult than multi-player... I will be interesting to see where this goes...

      Wish me Luck!


    5. #5
      TXU Jr. Member ytene's Avatar
      Credits
      401.70
      Points
      841
      is Quite Bonkers
       
      I am:
      Crazy
       
      Total Contributions For

      ytene      £ 475.00
      Main InfoStatus and ThingsPoints and CreditsOther
      Join Date
      13-10-2007
      Posts
      95

      Default

      One more update.

      I had a call back this morning from the Citizens' Advice Bureau. I took them through the pertinent facts of the case and they were somewhat sceptical of any chance I might have for a refund. Their advice was that this primarily falls to the "Goods And Services Act", not the "Sale of Goods Act", and that, furthermore, that it will largely hinge on 2 things: the clarity of the commitment made by Frontier at the time [ which, given their recent admissions and concessions, seems somewhat of a slam-dunk] and secondly, any wording in the original Kickstarter Agreement or contract or implied terms that covers a scenario in which Frontier may have the option to not deliver part of the functionality for i.e. "Technical Reasons". Their guideline was that even though the sum I have in dispute is 550, that technically Frontier are likely to argue that the bulk of that was for the development of a software product [the game] which Frontier have delivered.

      My response was that was all well and good, but companies are contracted to write software every day of the year - and that a company failing to materially meet a specification they initially committed to meet cannot expect to be paid, especially when by that company's own admission, they had multiple opportunities to alert their investors and failed to do so.

      I am going to have to scour Frontier's Kickstarter content, plus all their videos, for the concrete evidence of a commitment to single-player gaming, and then go from there. It seems unlikely, given Frontier's responses to date, that they are going to roll over and provide a refund, so the CAB specialist who called back today recommended that I would have to take the case before a judge of the Small Claims Court...

      Well, I've learned one thing: never pre-order another game - from anyone...

      More to follow as it happens...


    6. #6
      Swarmed by spaceflEyes Mangar's Avatar
      Credits
      132.93
      Points
      5,086
      is Making Holiday baskets of
      Space Fuel Jugs and Roasted
      Space Fly Baskets as gifts....
      PFfft!!!
       
      I am:
      Happy
       
      Total Contributions For

      Mangar - {M} Points for Shouts      £ 0.00
      Main InfoStatus and ThingsPoints and CreditsOther
      Join Date
      19-06-2011
      Location
      Stuck in a wormhole!!!
      Posts
      783
      Blog Entries
      5

      Default

      Quote Originally Posted by ytene View Post
      One more update.

      ......

      Well, I've learned one thing: never pre-order another game - from anyone...

      .....
      Amen, if people stop pre ordering stuff, hopefully these companies can't push workers to release as is stuff, or label stuff as beta release or testing. because anything before a final release is just that, SUBJECT to CHANGE!!!

      But I am sure there are more and more so called companies watching how the LAW handles game makers around them to wonder what they will or will not get away with anymore in the future.

      Best of luck to get back what you deserve!!! and others Too!!!


      Hmmm....there was something I wanted to mutter....must not be important after all
      [ Fluently verse in mutterings, babblings and ramblings ]

      "Never confuse education with intelligence." - unknown

    7. #7
      TXU Sr. Member Joelnh's Avatar
      Credits
      159.39
      Points
      1,573
      This user has no status.
       
      I am:
      Cool
       
      Total Contributions For

      Joelnh      £ 0.00
      Main InfoStatus and ThingsPoints and CreditsOther
      Join Date
      27-01-2011
      Location
      NH, USA
      Posts
      360

      Default

      I am glad I didn't sign on to support them, hope you get your money back.
      This game was on my list to eventually buy, now it's on the most likely skip list.


    8. #8
      TXU Full Member superdave's Avatar
      Credits
      51.31
      Points
      533
      is intrigued
       
      I am:
      Crazy
       
      Total Contributions For

      superdave      £ 0.00
      Main InfoStatus and ThingsPoints and CreditsOther
      Join Date
      08-12-2011
      Location
      canada
      Posts
      106
      Blog Entries
      1

      Default

      yes pre ordering can be sketchy at best. ive seen several titles stall after they got some pre order funding (dayz, im looking at you!). ive even seen products development halted (spacebase df9, doublefine software) before official releases could be attained. they have not lived up to the promise they have made to their investors, and should be held accountable. any other corporation, asking for investors, is.
      the more i see this model in action, the more im reminded of drug dealers.
      you pay for a drug from a dealer, you never know if its going to be good or not till you try it.
      if its no good once you try it, maybe 1 in 100 will refund your money. most will offer you something trivial, like a nominal credit in their product line up. some will tell you to shove off.
      if its pretty good, and you enjoy the time you spend with it, there will likely be more installments soon that you can pay for. and likely, the game will become unplayable if you dont buy these things.
      these marketing practices need to be halted, they are highly immoral.

      basically, what i see here is this. they have sold a product idea, knowing its not what they are leading people to believe that it is. they have included protection from this in the form of a clause that says "anyone whos actually tried the product we are selling is no longer eligible for a refund". by itself, a statement like this is a red flag. attached to an unfinished product, its a red flag with flashing lights and arrows pointing directly at it.

      crowd-sourcing is a great source of revenue for start ups with good ideas, and the ability to realise them. it is going to be ruined by these dishonest practices though.

      "Speculation is as speculation does, i guess"
      if hydrogen is a flammable gas, and oxygen accelerates fire, why isnt water explosive?
      rumors of my death are greatly exaggerated.

    9. #9
      Swarmed by spaceflEyes Mangar's Avatar
      Credits
      132.93
      Points
      5,086
      is Making Holiday baskets of
      Space Fuel Jugs and Roasted
      Space Fly Baskets as gifts....
      PFfft!!!
       
      I am:
      Happy
       
      Total Contributions For

      Mangar - {M} Points for Shouts      £ 0.00
      Main InfoStatus and ThingsPoints and CreditsOther
      Join Date
      19-06-2011
      Location
      Stuck in a wormhole!!!
      Posts
      783
      Blog Entries
      5

      Default

      From now on I will not be paying for games up front as a public beta tester.
      1. kills the whole first impression experience.
      2. Kind of like a group of people telling you what is about to happen on the next page before you turn the page.
      3. things you like/dislike they drop, add, modify.
      reason #4 >> reason #52 ,000

      I rather just waiting if its a flop or a thrill, then I will fork the money up even if I skip 10% reduce price for a pre purchase.

      Consider if one buy 20 games up front you pre order for average $40 form $50, half are a waste of effort. (cause I have two kids and myself, about 6 games for each person a year)

      example a person a gets them all, spends $900 dollars, by the end of the year all three PCs need an upgrade.
      example b persons only buys the GOOD HALF AFTER RELEASE AND REVIEWS !!!! at full price for $500
      WOW you save $400 for a new pc upgrade that's what I did

      (if you live in the US, no more Guber games) not going to get sold up front on lies and misconception or misleading anymore, they need to prove it works first.


      Hmmm....there was something I wanted to mutter....must not be important after all
      [ Fluently verse in mutterings, babblings and ramblings ]

      "Never confuse education with intelligence." - unknown

    10. #10
      TXU Full Member superdave's Avatar
      Credits
      51.31
      Points
      533
      is intrigued
       
      I am:
      Crazy
       
      Total Contributions For

      superdave      £ 0.00
      Main InfoStatus and ThingsPoints and CreditsOther
      Join Date
      08-12-2011
      Location
      canada
      Posts
      106
      Blog Entries
      1

      Default

      yes, im waiting for reviews and a few updates before considering early access games. my steam library is extensive (well over 100 games, about 20 are "early access", one ive even paid big money to support up front) and grows at a pretty regular pace. this is my entertainment preference, so this is where my entertainment budget goes. having bought into a few early releases that should have never made a penny, ive learned that buying right off the bat is no good (especially for me, since my budget is pretty tight to begin with) so i wait for a few reviews to come in, and to see what direction the patches are heading, and if i still think its a game worth investing in, then i will think about it a bit. but i always weigh finished products above early access, and bigger publishers also get more consideration when deciding which game my budget allows me to get this month.

      while i think its important to support people in projects i would like to see realised, im also very aware of the old bait and switch tactic used the world over by fraudsters trying to get my money (hell, even my landlord used that same bit with my lease!) so i am more cautious now than i was about a year ago, when i bought my first "early access" game. i have game ideas of my own i would like to realise as well, and i would have to turn to crowdsourcing for both the funding and the development team, so i hope the concept isnt ruined by the few bad apples in the barrel.

      "Speculation is as speculation does, i guess"
      if hydrogen is a flammable gas, and oxygen accelerates fire, why isnt water explosive?
      rumors of my death are greatly exaggerated.

    Posting Permissions

    • You may not post new threads
    • You may not post replies
    • You may not post attachments
    • You may not edit your posts
    •