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Kickstarter System Shock Remaster Goes On Hiatus

It looks like more money meant more problems for the crowd-funded project. 


Choosing whether or not to back a Kickstarter project is always a gamble. Even the most ambitious, well organized, projects can run into snags and fall off the face of the earth. Semi-fortunately, it doesn't look like the System Shock remaster has quite reached the point where the dev team completely gives up, but the team is now on hiatus as they reassess the development path they're currently on. 

When Nightdive Studios made their initial Kickstarter run in June 2016 they were able to raise $1.3 million thanks to 21,000 backers to do a modern remaster of the classic System Shock. However, as the money came in, the team's ambition ballooned and according to a statement made by Nightdive CEO Stephen Kick, their initial vision started to change:

"We moved from a Remaster to a completely new game. We shifted engines from Unity to Unreal, a choice that we don’t regret and one that has worked out for us. With the switch we began envisioning doing more, but straying from the core concepts of the original title...

The more that we worked on the game, the more that we wanted to do, and the further we got from the original concepts that made System Shock so great.

As the CEO and founder of Nightdive Studios, a company that was built on the restoration of the System Shock franchise, I let things get out of control. I can tell you that I did it for all the right reasons, that I was totally committed to making a great game, but it has become clear to me that we took the wrong path, that we turned our backs on the very people who made this possible, our Kickstarter backers."

For now, Stephen has decided to put the project on hiatus while they figure out how to get their core concept of a System Shock remaster back on track. He emphasized that this is just a break while they reassess the situation and went on to tell fans that they will, one day, get the System Shock remake they helped fund:

"Please accept my personal assurance that we will be back and stronger than ever. System Shock is going to be completed and all of our promises fulfilled." 


Blake has been writing and making videos about pop-culture and games for over 10 years now. Although he'd probably prefer you thought of him as a musician and listened to his band, If you see him on the street, buy him a taco or something. Follow him on twitter @ProfRobot

From The Chatty
  • reply
    February 23, 2018 12:49 PM

    Blake Morse posted a new article, Kickstarter System Shock Remaster Goes On Hiatus

    • reply
      February 23, 2018 12:53 PM

      Look at you, backer: a pathetic creature of meat and bone, panting and sweating as you send money through my reward tiers.

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        February 23, 2018 1:28 PM

        I tried to lol this but the Shack API is busted. Good one!

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      February 23, 2018 2:57 PM

      is the bank account also on hiatus, or are you spending and enjoying the 1.3 million dollars while people wait.

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        February 23, 2018 5:07 PM

        I think you don't quite comprehend how little $1.3 mill is in terms of full 3D game development. The actual cost of a project of this scale could easily be $10+ mill. They've already invested significantly from their own assets. They were 25% (their own, likely inaccurate, guesstimate) complete when the Kickstarter launched with a playable pre-alpha demo. They'll likely be providing 90%+ of the development cost themselves.

        They have put an additional 1.5 years of work in since the kickstarter began. Even with a smaller team (15ish people?), with a reasonable average salary, the Kickstarter money is fucking gone!

        This seems to be them taking a step back to look at their financials, probably divert some people into quicker profit options (like their wonderful Turok releases), and focus down the scope of this project. I hope they can get their financials worked out, and manage to release a solid product eventually.

        (Sorry, a touch ranty, but ignorant negativity gets to me sometimes.)

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          February 23, 2018 5:34 PM

          echoing what was already said, but 1.3M is hardly anything for this kind of game

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          February 24, 2018 5:04 AM

          When $1.3 million comes from investment capital, yeah it's not much. When that 1.3 million comes from people who work for a living and have bills of their own to pay, it's quite a lot of money.

          When people invest their own money to see a remaster of the original game, and the project lead decides to make a stand-alone game on his own volition, I can understand why people would be upset.

          It's sh*t like this that makes people avoid kickstarter projects like the plague, IMO.

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      February 23, 2018 5:41 PM

      I have never backed anything on Kickstarter for more than like 100 dollars this very reason

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        February 23, 2018 5:53 PM

        Too many people walk into Kickstarter expecting that they bought a product when they support something. I treat it more like a high risk investment. You may get something, nothing, or totally different from the concept product.

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      February 24, 2018 2:40 AM

      They should never have switched engines. Wtf where they thinking.

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        February 24, 2018 5:33 AM

        Hey it worked for daikatana.

        But it sounds like the issue here is they went down a bad path with the design?

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          February 24, 2018 6:08 AM

          Everyone was hating on it when they saw it was a Unity title and listing all of the faults of Unity based games, so I imagine the entire change was a good thing.

          Overhauling the art design entirely midway through and the non stop feature creep, on the other hand...

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        February 26, 2018 4:54 AM


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      February 24, 2018 3:20 AM

      Really bummed about this because the initial pitch and scope was perfect. With every update and instance of feature creep, I got more and more worried :(

      Honestly though, I'm glad they had the balls to suspend and review what the fuck was happening rather than continuing down the same path and delivering something completely different from the original promise (hi, Star Citizen). Let's hope they can get this shit back on track!

      (Ideally under new leadership)

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