Derek Smart Profile picture
oldest #indiedev fossil. was indie before it was a thing. science & sci-fi aficionado, IT geek, gamer, game dev, writer, entrepreneur, the Battlecruiser guy
ringgit malaysia Profile picture 🇬🇧DR.Renton🐸🇺🇸⭐⭐⭐PM-Elect✝️🇧🇷🇮🇹⌛️🥓🤣🐶 Profile picture Malevictus Profile picture Rasmus Krook Profile picture Twitter author Profile picture 13 added to My Authors
10 Oct 20
Well don't look now, but SQ42 no longer has a release date. Wait till you see Chris's response in an AMA on the game's 8th (it's actually 9, but whose counting?) anniversary.

robertsspaceindustries.com/spectrum/commu…
As Star Citizen turns eight years old, the single-player campaign still sounds a long way off

eurogamer.net/articles/2020-…
But wait! Are you old enough to remember this 2014 interview?

gamespot.com/articles/star-…
Read 7 tweets
8 Oct 20
So there's a new Star Citizen controversy brewing and which various parties are diving into. I haven't done much digging, so I will just provide some of my own thoughts.

First of all, I want to make this clear - again...
Star Citizen devolved into an absolute scam years ago. The basis for the scam is that the creators and primaries were busy focused on unjust enrichment by taking money out of the project, rather than putting money into it. This has gone on for years now.
To the extent that not only have they done shady financial things like building a corp with backer money, then selling back that corp to themselves, but also taking out large sums from the venture, even as they run out of money year after year.
Read 28 tweets
29 Sep 20
For context, you'd have to do some catching up on my tweets since this fiasco started. To be clear, as a veteran game dev for 30+ yrs, as I see it, this battle was a long-time in the making, and needed to be waged.
Though some of my peers & colleagues in the biz are hesitant to publicly opine given the parties involved, my view is that with all the confusion as to the merits of the matter and what it means to gamers and game devs, this discussion is worth having cuz feelz aren't relevant.
To get started, this is what I said on 08/13 when news of the lawsuit went public, and which goes back to what I just stated in the first tweet of this thread.

Read 46 tweets
25 Sep 20
This is a very big deal indeed.

Amazon’s Luna game streaming service is powered by Windows and Nvidia GPUs theverge.com/2020/9/25/2145…
When Google decided to do Stadia, maybe they thought that because most of the leading game engines supported Linux - and thus Vulcan api for graphics - that devs would rush on board.
Thing is, like OGL, Vulcan hasn't exactly lit our collective butts on fire because it's new (to those not keeping up to date), and it's a major hassle to implement in a graphics pipeline. Forget about porting from DX to Vulcan; it makes grown men wheep.
Read 9 tweets
21 Sep 20
If you thought Chris couldn't be any more, what's the word - dismissive? Well, he told the community that he's so busy that he can't answer their [important] questions. However, he will answer a SINGLE question. I swear I'm not making this up:

robertsspaceindustries.com/spectrum/commu…
"Tony’s goal (goal != promise) is to have elements of the Dynamic Universe start to come online next year, likely towards the back half of the year, where player’s actions can impact both the Dynamic Economy and other players."
Read 6 tweets
16 Sep 20
Epic Games lawsuit is just a publicity stunt, says Apple 9to5mac.com/2020/09/16/epi… via @benlovejoy
lmao! I doubt that very much. Despite my misgivings about how Epic went about this lawsuit and which was only revealed via Apple's filings (emails), Epic could have more publicity impact by putting money for these legal bills into worthy causes - or even marketing.
Generally, a company that has traditionally supported devs the way Epic has over the years, aren't likely to put those same devs at risk by engaging in a protracted publicity stunt like this and which has severe consequences.
Read 13 tweets
15 Sep 20
His latest missive is no different from similar ones which he penned back in the day when he was - again - facing a backer backlash. If you want a refresher on that, @nichegamer just did one.

nichegamer.com/2020/09/14/sta…
It's not odd that he showed up - out of the Blue - even as backer posts asking where he was kept being deleted and backers banned for daring to ask where the grifter they gave $300M+ disappeared to. And it wasn't to explain wtf is going on with the project or the money.
No, it was to address some inconsequential bs that he - once again - littered with the same lies culled directly from the well curated dreams.txt and then just regurgitated it in a bid to "prove" that he was still around - or something.
Read 14 tweets
15 Sep 20
The last Star Citizen blog I wrote was in Summer 2019. I had stopped writing them because quite honestly it became far too depressing - even for lols. Plus I still have friends & peers who are (some gone now) still feverishly working on Chris's pipe dream, and I just felt bad.
As an OG backer of the project, and it's most famous critic (they started it!), I have always had to draw the line between being a critic while deriding someone else's project that they're slaving over. Thing is, Chris is a liar, grifter, cheat - and a complete fraud.
That's what money does to you. Back when I started sounding the alarm bells that this was shaping up to be another Freelancer, Strike Commander, I took a LOT of flak for it. It's now FIVE years + $400M later and we're still having this discussion.
Read 7 tweets
14 Sep 20
ICYMI:

Fortnite Fight: CEO Explains Why He Launched War Against Apple, Google npr.org/2020/09/10/911…
My opinion on this remains the same.

Because of how (intentional breach of a ToS) they did this - and which we only found out via Apple's filing (the emails) - Epic doesn't stand a snowball in hell chance of prevailing in any way, shape or form.

It didn't have to be this way.
There's no argument about whether or not Apple are engaged in various anti-consumer practices. They are. And it's not just in software. They do nefarious bs with hardware as well e.g. by restricting access to repair components required by third-party repair shops.
Read 5 tweets
14 Sep 20
Chris Roberts: Star Citizen gameplay 'is not a pipe dream' pcgamer.com/chris-roberts-…
That article is based on a salty post update apparently by Chris Roberts. But they totally missed the juicy parts. Read for yourself. It’s the usual bs, but here’s what most people have missed. He said:

robertsspaceindustries.com/spectrum/commu…
"We are on track to have over one million unique players this year”

Well, a backer just came up with a script which seems to indicate that there are really only $600K backers (who put any money into the project).
Read 7 tweets
12 Sep 20
Since this appeared I have been hesitant to post it simply because there is ZERO evidence to suggest that Chris wrote this. Why? Because time and time again we've busted CIG attributing posts to him.

robertsspaceindustries.com/spectrum/commu…
The debate is still raging as to whether or not this in fact him. Thus far I ZERO reason to believe that it's him and not someone else.

For one thing, amid ALL the outcry about the game, schedule, money - his *disappearance* etc, he chose to show up now.
...less than a few days after my recent post and the ongoing outcries which have reached fever pitch amid removals of ALL posts asking where the AF he is.
Read 8 tweets
9 Sep 20
Frontier, devs of @EliteDangerous have filed their **AUDITED** yearly financials. As usual, it's very impressive.

frontier.co.uk/annual-report
The shade thrown at that 9 year, $400M scam is all the lols you'd need to today.
"We verified that there was a significant appetite for such a game with Kickstarter crowdfunding at the end of 2012 and early 2013, and the game itself has now vindicated that decision with continued success in its sixth year of full release (its seventh year since early access)"
Read 6 tweets
4 Sep 20
Disclaimer: For the record, and so there's no confusion, I had nothing to do with any of this.

So, since most of the Star Citizen streamers have bailed, this is the latest escapee. What he had to say is, well, look...

He blocked me back when I was telling them they were promoting a scam; so click on his Tweet to see it.

This is the guy who proposed to his bride at a CitizenCon event. The same guy who - literally - cried on a stream because SC was shit, and says tanked his streaming "career".
Then there's this other SC streamer who got his wife to say this - live - on stream. No, seriously - watch it.

reddit.com/r/starcitizen/…

I swear the jokes just write themselves now.
Read 4 tweets
3 Sep 20
Well, it's now confirmed that SQ42 has been moved into 2021.

Funny story. I knew this back in May 2017 when my sources told me that Chris and co were blatantly lying about the game coming out in 208.

dereksmart.com/forums/reply/5…
They did it again in Dec 2018 when they got the $46M investor bailout, then swore up and down that the Alpha was coming in Q1/20. Then again in Q2/20. We're now in Q3/20, and the latest newsletter all but confirms recent sources that it was never - ever - coming out in 2020.
In fact, I just mentioned this again barely days ago in this long thread.

Read 9 tweets
31 Aug 20
I had to look up from my debugger to bring some breaking Star Citizen news.

First, the talent exodus continues as even more big names make their exit.

One of them, Ben Parry, is a name you probably recognize because he blatantly LIED about the 2016 Lumberyard engine switch.
In 2016, merely months after I had reported that they were doing an engine switch, Ben and I got into a heated exchange after I challenged him that no such switch had taken place because I had reverse engineered that Star Citizen build in question and was able to prove it.
This engine "switch" appeared out of nowhere in a build without any prior notice or announcement. Chris was lying, and so were Ben and everyone on the project.

I wrote a whole blog about it in Dec 2016, complete with illustrations from Ben.

dereksmart.com/2016/12/star-c…
Read 24 tweets
29 Aug 20
There will be no peace in these lands.

Apple officially unplugs Epic from the App Store | Engadget engadget.com/apple-epic-app…
And just like that, aside from the Unreal engine which is a different license account, making good on its threat, Apple pulls all Epic games from its store.
Which is precisely what I had said they would do because they have the rights to do that when a developer or publisher violates a ToS. It's not product specific; it's corp specific.
Read 26 tweets
27 Aug 20
Yes, in this instance it was retaliatory; and it's great that the judge agreed. But the fact is that any corp violating (especially intentionally like Epic did) a ToS usually gets ALL their products pulled. Microsoft, Sony, Valve et al do it because it's standard practice.
Apple's mistake was that they didn't pull ALL Epic's products right off the bat; and for good reason. Instead, they threatened to pull other products only after the lawsuit was filed; hence it came off as being retaliatory even if it was justified in terms of standard practice.
Epic could have similarly disputed Apple's store policy in court without *intentionally* violating their ToS thus sparking hostilities that caught devs and gamers in the crossfire.

NONE of us could pull off that crap without some serious consequences.
Read 16 tweets
25 Aug 20
Yup - I said the SAME thing days ago in my thread.

"The current predicament appears of its own making,” Rogers wrote, arguing that Epic “strategically chose to breach its agreements with Apple”

Epic judge will protect Unreal Engine — but not Fortnite - theverge.com/2020/8/25/2140…
The fact that Epic intentionally violated the ToS is how this erupted into a crisis of their own making. And the judge agreed. Saw this coming a mile away.

The issue here now is that even though the judge granted the UE engine a reprieve, it's a temporary one because if down the road Apple successfully argues that you can't just remove one product and not the other when a corp violates a ToS, that's going to be utterly bad.
Read 5 tweets
21 Aug 20
Oh boy.

Apple says Epic Games CEO wanted a side deal for Fortnite cnbc.com/2020/08/21/app…
As much as it pains me to say this, from the very start I had said that this had nothing to do with altruism. Amid those tweets (to Tim), I got several (7 actually) DMs telling me that I was stepping on thin ice.
But I didn't see it that way because I've got a few friends at Epic and I've had those peer relationships for years - even with Tim. And I had no reason to believe that I couldn't voice an opinion about something that ultimately affects all of us as gamers and game devs.
Read 9 tweets
21 Aug 20
It's Fri, so that means new Star Citizen related shenanigans are afoot. Word is that people across ALL studios are either leaving or being laid off in Q3/Q4. In the past week alone, from devs and lead designers to concept artists have left for other studios (Splash Damage etc)
Alert backers noticed that in the latest update to the roadmap for the roadmap, CIG indicated that 450 (!) people were working on the projects. Down from 600 cited back in June. That's a very steep drop - and it's unclear what is going on atm.
What's consistent is that scope creep continues to be used to raise money. The latest example is they announced a new ship - nowhere in the previous roadmap - and raised about $1M before funding flatlined again.

robertsspaceindustries.com/funding-goals
Read 18 tweets
21 Aug 20
Chris has an excellent article on the Epic v Apple fiasco.

Why Fortnite picked a fight with Apple and Google (and why now)

postgame.substack.com/p/why-fortnite… via @plante
@plante Matt Stoller also has his own article now up. Both are excellent reads and which - hilariously - say the things I've been saying to Tim et al since this whole thing started.

"Epic Games Kicks Off the Civil War in American Business"

mattstoller.substack.com/p/epic-games-k… via @matthewstoller
Matt, who literally wrote a book on monopolies, has a more interesting take on the consequences of whatever fallout comes from this.

Both of these authors have articulated precisely why these lawsuits are going to shape the future of digital. Pretty much what I said on day 1.
Read 5 tweets