Elite 4 turns to Kickstarter

Fans of classic sandbox space sim series Elite have clamored for a sequel for yonks, but creator David Brabern's studio Frontier Developments has been occupied putting out games like Kinectimals and Kinect Disneyland Adventures. Now it's finally ready to give a new Elite a proper go and has turned to Kickstarter (where else?) for $2 million, but the pitch is astonishingly barebones, hoping that tugging at your nostalgia gland will be sufficient.

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Fans of classic sandbox space sim series Elite have clamored for a sequel for yonks, but creator David Braben's studio Frontier Developments has been occupied putting out games like Kinectimals and Kinect Disneyland Adventures. Now it's finally ready to give a new Elite a proper go and has turned to Kickstarter (where else?) for $2 million, but the pitch is remarkably barebones, hoping that tugging at your nostalgia gland will be sufficient.

Frontier's Kickstarter campaign for Elite: Dangerous doesn't even offer a video or single piece of concept art as it asks for £1,250,000 (about $2 million US). Instead, there's a textual description of what it hopes to offer: the classic Elite fun of a procedurally-generated universe and freedom to do as you please, whether that's trade, become a pirate, hunt bounties, explore or what have you.

"Fundamentally this is the game I want to make and have wanted to make for a long time. I want to make this game for myself – it is the sort of game I want to play," Braben said. "There are many more like me at Frontier that want this for themselves too, and, I hope, out there in Kickstarter-land."

$2 million is a huge initial target for such a skimpy pitch. Wing Commander creator Chris Roberts was also looking for $2 million for his sandbox space sim Star Citizen, but his pitch also included swish in-engine cinematics, screenshots, actually showing what's being made. That's currently approaching $3 million, by the way, between Kickstarter and its own crowd-funding scheme.

Frontier is hoping to release Elite: Dangerous on PC in March 2014. Hopefully it'll have more to say soon, or this may go the way of Loot Drop's Old School RPG, which scrapped the Kickstarter after acknowledging the pitch was weak.

From The Chatty
  • reply
    November 6, 2012 6:45 AM

    Alice O'Connor posted a new article, Elite 4 turns to Kickstarter.

    Fans of classic sandbox space sim series Elite have clamored for a sequel for yonks, but creator David Brabern's studio Frontier Developments has been occupied putting out games like Kinectimals and Kinect Disneyland Adventures. Now it's finally ready to give a new Elite a proper go and has turned to Kickstarter (where else?) for $2 million, but the pitch is astonishingly barebones, hoping that tugging at your nostalgia gland will be sufficient.

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      November 6, 2012 6:54 AM

      All over this even though I never really played the original. Sounds fun, Frontier are a proven developer, and also yay Britsoft.

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      November 6, 2012 6:58 AM

      BBC News did a report on this Kickstarter

      Video:
      http://elite.frontier.co.uk/

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      November 6, 2012 7:00 AM

      Does that Kickstarter not work through Amazon payments?

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        November 6, 2012 8:17 AM

        So far, it does... for American projects.
        This being a British-based game, it seems that it uses a different protocol of payment.

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      November 6, 2012 7:28 AM

      HUGE fricking news here, if only they had some video/details

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      November 6, 2012 7:38 AM

      "Yonks" is apparently a long time? (Love you Alice)

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      November 6, 2012 7:42 AM

      Very interesting, I look forward to see how this procedural content generation works out. I hope they make their goals.

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      November 6, 2012 8:08 AM

      This is as empty as the "old school RPG" from Tom Hall. Huge contrast to Chris Roberts.

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        November 6, 2012 8:26 AM

        At least it was entertaining to see John Romero in Tom Hall pitch video. This one is nothing but a wall of text....

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      November 6, 2012 8:45 AM

      Yeah, I'm gonna have to see it. It'd be interesting to see some of the failed branches they already tried. I still say the original Elite is the only good one. It was very VERY good, though; right up there with Gunship as my most played title, for sure (Killing Floor is closing in though).

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        November 6, 2012 8:46 AM

        Alice, why don't you play Killing Floor with us? I think the first time I saw a vid of it, you were in it.

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      November 6, 2012 10:53 AM

      LOL wtf are they thinking? Cant just grab a pile of free cash of KS (Im sure thats what someone told them), you need to run it like a political campaign, some projects pay someone to run it for them, its an art

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        November 6, 2012 11:05 AM

        And yet they are already almost 1/5th of the way to their goal (and counting) after just 1 day, and they've already sold out the top tier "Pledge £5,000 or more / Dinner with myself and the key team members in Cambridge, Have a central star system named* after you, plus all rewards above."



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          November 6, 2012 12:12 PM

          Amazing really, Ive seen other projects with more promise, more information get left by the sidelines

          I always wonder when i see top tiers sell out late/early/fast in the project if its family or even team members spending 5000$ to ensure they get a million,etc

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      November 6, 2012 11:26 PM

      Should probably correct 'Brabern'... His name's David Braben :)

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      November 7, 2012 12:28 AM

      I saw that earlier. I'm very hesitant about this. Nostalgia does go some way with me, and I'd love another space sim, but this game has been in development for close to 7 years now, if Braben is to be believed. Even as a console game at one point, and yet they have absolutely nothing to show for it. Same as the other game by Frontier, The Outsider, which was supposed to feature dynamically or procedurally created storylines. An ambitious idea that went nowhere. The game development for it has stopped, but yet it's somehow not canceled, with Elite 4 always having been supposedly scheduled for when the game they were no longer working had been completed. While I'd love to be wrong, I have the suspicion that there is very little more than hot air in this pitch.

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