10-year Blizzard veteran joins Star Citizen team

Cloud Imperium Games hires Alex Mayberry to work on crowdfunded game as its executive producer.

Diablo III lead producer Alex Mayberry has left Blizzard Entertainment for Star Citizen studio Cloud Imperium Games, the company announced today. He will work as an executive producer at the studio, leading development on the massively successful crowdfunded game.

At Cloud Imperium Games, Mayberry will oversee all development on Star Citizen. He will also be responsible for managing the company's development studios across the world. Mayberry will report directly to Cloud Imperium Games CEO Chris Roberts.

"After 10 years at Blizzard, I didn't think that there was anything that could ever get me to leave," Mayberry said. "But then Chris invited me to come check out Star Citizen, and after seeing the game and listening to Chris talk about his vision, I knew that I had to be a part of it."

Star Citizen is the most successful crowdfunded project--of any kind--in history. Its crowdfunding campaign originally began in October 2012 and to date, gamers have backed the project to the tune of $43.6 million.

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Eddie Makuch

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and would like to see the Whalers return to Hartford.
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64 comments
Crush_Project
Crush_Project

um about 10 years ago was about the point when blizzard went from my favorite company to my least favorite company.

Why are they picking up the people that are to be blamed? 

ponymilar
ponymilar

For the believers that "they care or respect their customers, above money", here is a big evidence that they don't:


https://forums.robertsspaceindustries.com/discussion/130070/more-info-from-ben-in-rsi-chat


Ben Lesnick, the Star Citizen community manager, with a big role of communication, marketing and also in the game designer says about the episode with people complaining that they were offering in-game perks for subscribers, contradicting what they said before that never would add in-game advantages for the subscribers and only would give 'behind of scenes" material prior of backers to them):


"We had to deal with some hate on the forums, but we also sold 1,000 more subscriptions after that segment :)"


See? He simply called people disappointed because they did not keep an actual promise that they made before, as "haters" and they simply do not care, since they kept 1000 more subscriptions anyway.


That's ALL that they do. And that I have been talking about. They promise things to later contradict their promises for money reasons, even after already got twice the budget that they need to make the full game and keep the servers running for a long time.


The false advertising and deceptive marketing attitude is inside their bloods. And this quote from Ben Lesnick is a clear demonstration of that... Well... not for the fanboys, that even if they never release the game, they still will find some excuse.


ponymilar
ponymilar

From Kickstarter page: "For the people who pledge for their spaceship in the Star Citizen universe, you’ll be part of a select club that has exclusive access to early gameplay and behind the scenes development updates."


Well... Its far to be the first time that they reveal things for press and not for their backers first. 


After all, who cares with those people that already gave their money to them, when you want to get money from who did not pay you anything.


From Kickstarter page: "The people who pledge for their spaceships will get to test-fly them long before the general public."

Meh!

Everyone that did not pay a cent played the DFM in the PAX EAST Logitech Showcase and more than a month later, no backer except a few had the chance to play anything. 


The true marketing should be:

"The people who pledge for their spaceships will get to test-fly them LONG AFTER the general public."


/facepalm

Mhael03
Mhael03

I don't see how this is good news seeing as Diablo III is widely regarded as "disappointing" by the kindest critics. That team ignored what the fans wanted at every single step of development because apparently they knew better.

Trencher10
Trencher10

It certainly is massively successful crowdfunded ... but the waiting is underwhelming further expectations.

Keaze_
Keaze_

This game sounds good in theory, but I haven't been too impressed by any ship-controlling footage I have seen.  I'm thinking that they know it and they hope the Blizzard guy can help them in that regard.

digishah
digishah

That's good and all but I have never associated Blizzard with innovation or creativity...

Not saying their games are not good but they tend to stick with the same formula and not take a lot of risk, especially with new IP...

If Valve can't count to 3, then Blizzard can't learn new tricks...

justing16
justing16

great news. cant wait for the dog fighting module released end of this month :-)

damnyou444
damnyou444

the guy behind  Diablo III Auction House and always-online DRM is going to Star Citizen to assist with that game?

ponymilar
ponymilar

It seems that he decided to stop to exaggerate in the "saving profit" tactics and decided to bring someone with more experience to manage the development, since all their "experienced" main force (a few) was formed so far of people that or were his old friends and like him, were out-dated in the industry, or were people that came because they were unemployed due recent projects cancelled. The remaining are just newbies or partners that never put their names in any really successful games and seem had their services hired mainly because are cheaper.


And with the obvious debt that they are (about 6 months delay to release a tiny part of the whole), he definitely needs to put the things back on track before its too late. 


Saidrex
Saidrex

I hope he doesn't bring some stupid ideas to the project, for example always online DRM. If so - i will demand refund.

gdom12345
gdom12345

@ponymilar  Wow, so people paying money each month to support the game and get content 5 minutes before the rest of the community does equates to CIG not caring about their community.  I bet you're a ton of fun to play games with too.

Eza08
Eza08

@ponymilar  What? You're equating a couple of minutes playtime people had to endless hours of fun on their own personal computer? You do understand that they will install it on their own pc and play it whenever they want and not have to go to some convention to play it for 10 minutes.


"Well... Its far to be the first time that they reveal things for press and not for their backers first. "


See if you were actually following the project instead of talking bullshit you would know that a monthly magazine comes out for backers thats shows the development side of things a month before anybody else. You really are clueless. 



hydra9268
hydra9268

@Mhael03  The reason they hired Alex is they need someone to manage the production of the overall game while Chris can concentrate on big picture things as well as media inquires. The team now consists of hundreds of developers across dozens of companies in four countries. This requires a dedicated person who has executive-level leadership experience. The only other people who would've been a better pick is Mike Morhaime but I doubt he would leave Blizzard.

Adema83
Adema83

@Mhael03  That's because Blizzard did not have Chris Roberts steering the ship, this guy is just the Executive Producer and everything still need's to be run by Chris first.

hydra9268
hydra9268

@digishah  They didn't hired Alex for his "innovation or creativity". They hired him for his executive producer experience.

ponymilar
ponymilar

@digishah  Hmmm... But what will be Star Citizen after its release if not just micro-updates and more flavors of the same thing?


I highly doubt that after release they won't take a lot longer to really bringing some new addition, besides their micro-updates (and user-generated content? meh)... and probably will keep the same formula for many years.

ponymilar
ponymilar

@justing16  ... After 6 months delay, and without the team having the ability to give a date, even before just 2 weeks before (if you want to believe that it is coming in the end of this month).

hydra9268
hydra9268

@damnyou444  He has no say in that. He is only the executive producer. As EP his job is to communicate Chris' vision to the hundred of developers and insure that vision is happening.

naz99
naz99

@Cloud_imperium  while the gamers commenting on this but not following this seem to be getting dumber :(

hydra9268
hydra9268

@ponymilar  I take issue with your use of the word "debt". Where's your source that claims CIG is in debt? On average CIG makes $50k a day.

pelvist
pelvist

@Saidrex  You where expecting an MMO with thousands of players in a persistent universe to be ...offline? You, better get your refund.

ponymilar
ponymilar

@Saidrex  I will repeat to you what I said to other guy: Haven't you notice the cash grab policy that Chris Roberts is setting for Arena Commander v1,2,3 and further modules, that only will end near or after release (after already having twice times the budget that he needed to make SC)? 


Chris Roberts is a master on stealth, but he's doing something that totally contradicts himself, and puts publisher greedy with the status of angels, if compared with him.

silvervolpe
silvervolpe

@Saidrex lol Even if he did.. you reckon Chris will follow blindly? Don't forget who's running the show.

ponymilar
ponymilar

@Eza08 @ponymilar  Ha! What are you? Some kind of deceiver? Yes. I follow this project probably much more than you, since I know that you are lying. 


The monthly magazine is for SUBSCRIBERS which pay a monthly fee, not for backers that will get some of the content of the subscribers (And not all them) later.


You are really a deceiver. CR has an army of deceivers spread around the world. I would not doubt that they are the same 2 or 3 personas with multiple accounts. Probably some of them are even part of the Staff, disguised as users. 


Even one of the members of Staff confirmed in a Wingman's Hangar that pay a lot of attention of the Comments sections of news about SC spread around the world, for marketing purposes!


Meh for you deceivers.

silvervolpe
silvervolpe

@naz99 Naw.. they always been dumb, you just started noticing them more ;)

BrassBullet
BrassBullet

They need the money. SC is going to cost at least $60 million by release time. You can throw out the old estimates, that is no longer the game they are making.

It was recently discussed that just the acting/motion capture for single player could be as much as $10 million ( though they will likely scale that back).

screecwe
screecwe

@willzihang @ponymilar  Ive caught this tool making sock puppets on multiple gaming sites, even going to the length of replying to his sock puppet posts and talking about how they had "a great point". It's pretty hilarious and depressing at the same time.

willzihang
willzihang

@ponymilar There's something very fishy indeed about you-- and many others that are quite apparently hating with a very unusual degree of intensity. There's something up-- either you are PC game haters, or you can't countenance the fact that this project might well be far more honest than you seem to be utterly convinced otherwise.

ponymilar
ponymilar

@silvervolpe @naz99  fanboy wisdom. 


/facepalm

yoda101280
yoda101280

@ponymilar @yoda101280  I can yes, though I wouldn't waste my time doing so.  His opinion is his opinion it just happens to be incorrect and anyone who is even a little familiar with the people behind Star Citizen would know that.

ponymilar
ponymilar

@BrassBullet  Pfffffff... You got to be kidding me! Again? One more time... here comes a person with all their speculation and lies.


Here what CR said: "Luckily our ships are digital so we have hardly any cost of goods, just the cost of developing the universe of Star Citizen and running servers that Star Citizen’s universe will be simulated on. Thanks to the generosity of the Star Citizen community we have these two things covered"


And he said that in his 41 million letter on March 31 2014. What happened between 41 and 43, between March and today, that now made them needing instead that 23 million that was the last thing that he told that was needed he now needs more than 60? 


NOTHING! Its YOUR big lie (not even a CIG lie at this case). Just your bullshit and tentative to make people giving even more money that they already had, supposedly because if they don't get it, they couldn't release it. This is ridiculous! You people are just deceivers spreading bullshits around any SC news.



ponymilar
ponymilar

@a_sinclaire @ponymilar  "A lot of the additional ships etc for example will not be in the game at launch"


What ship? Actually all the ships were promised for launch, as well as the systems. They weren't added, they were revealed. Meh! 


And these cases they actually were promised for before the PU launch, but instead, for the Squadron 42 release, which will come earlier. 


And they weren't added. They were revealed. They were already in the plans. 


You have to be too naive to consider that a "next generation of Wing Commander" that have dozen of ships, betwwen friend and enemies, would be 50 missions, "with richer storyline" with you flying the same ship all the time against the same enemy ships all the time.


Meh! Again.


And for your last question. The game in the way that it was promised in the beginning was already a BDSSE. If you need a BDSSE++++++ instead a BDSSE that could naturally evolve in time, without the need to make everythign at the same time, maybe, by your logic, as more money they get, they could delay infinitely, just to get an exponential BDSSE. 


Why not? Let's give them 900 billion so they release it only in 2943. Maybe, the improvements due money will be so great that you actually you fly real ships, instead just virtual ships.


Meh! one more time.


"Most of the backers are fine with that"... you mean the 500 backers that visit the CIG forums in a daily basis? Or you mean those that complained about the delays and were threatened by the moderators with a ban hammer? Right. You seem a very well informed person.


a_sinclaire
a_sinclaire

@ponymilar  Again, there are more features to be added to the game than was planned at the $20m mark. Just because those are not implemented at launch, does not mean that they do not cost money. A lot of the additional ships etc for example will not be in the game at launch, which has been said multiple times by CIG (so no, it's not speculation). But they still have to be developed which costs money. Same for other stuff like additional star systems. And this extra content often is developed by additional devs or outside studios, so they indeed do not take too much time away from the development of the original core mechanics which are needed for a "fully functional game". The whole ground combat mechanic for example is not part of the originally envisioned game and is not supposed to be ready at launch. So that right there is a huge difference between the full game as originally planned and the full game as it stands now. And just to repeat myself again, just because that is not part of the original plan and just because it most likely will not be implemented at launch, does not mean that it will not cost money now or that it is not part of the new, enlarged vision of the game, made possible by additional funds.


And to your last point, before they funded their own mocap studio, they obviously would have had to rent one instead of doing it in-house. Which they also said a few times. 


Besides all this, why would it be so bad if the game would indeed get slightly delayed if it did? Isn't quality better than deadlines? Unless of course you want something like Battlefield 4. I could live with it, seemingly most of the backers could live with it as well. 



ponymilar
ponymilar

@a_sinclaire @ponymilar  "There is a difference between the "FULL GAME" as is was envisioned pre $23m and the "FULL GAME" as it is envisioned now. "


Hmpf! And here you go again in your "speculation party" contradicting what Chris Roberts said: 


"... we don’t commit to adding features that would hold up the game’s ability to go “live” in a fully functional state," "Also remember that this is not like a typical retail boxed product — there is no rule that all features and content have to come online at the same time! 

"The purpose of the higher stretch goals is to ensure that the game-as-described is finished in the two year time period."


And below the 6 million mark: 10X the detail of current AAA games

Now... Tell me... how he could possibly dare to say that will be 10x times of the detail of current AAA games, without using mocap? Pffffff.


a_sinclaire
a_sinclaire

@ponymilar  


I am not talking about the $10m stretchgoal. I am talking about the cost for the cutscenes. With the original budget they might have had maybe $5m to realize those. Now they spend $10m which means more and higher quality cutscenes. 


And the game has grown since the original plan. It would not have the whole feature and content-list it has now. We would have had half as many ships and less detailed mechanics in the $23m version of the game. 


There is a difference between the "FULL GAME" as is was envisioned pre $23m and the "FULL GAME" as it is envisioned now. 

ponymilar
ponymilar

@a_sinclaire @ponymilar  See... One more example of a guy that denies the own words of CR and pure speculate about things, just trying to defend his fanboyism....


You come and say that what I say "it is out of basement", try to be funny with your bad joke, "claim that others already pointed out how flawed the stuff that I am write", when I actually brought the own words of the CEO of Cloud Imperium Games to support everything, while these people brought nothing in "what they pointed out to show how flawed what I said is", except their own speculations that totally contradicts what the own CEO said.


Oh! And he accuses me, but look who in fact is totally out of basement... himself. 


CR would make the cutscenes for SQ42 anyway. The only thing that the 10 million Stretch Goal did, is that instead renting the techonology, they bought the technology so they save money in the long term (THEY SAID THAT), and even earn some money in the future by renting it to other development groups or movies.


And they NEVER said that it would cost 10 million. This is soooo out of basement. 


And by the way... CR said that the FULL GAME would cost 20-23 million dollars and nothing more than that. And he says: "Surely new mocap hardware or a new starship design doesn’t cost a million dollars. "





a_sinclaire
a_sinclaire

@ponymilar


Did Chris Roberts steal your toys or why are you so bitter? Get out of the basement and get some fresh air. 


Others have already pointed out how flawed the stuff is you write, so I am not going to repeat this., just a small thing to add...


Regarding the cash grab stuff you post which of course is nonsense: The cutscenes for the S42 single player campaign alone will cost $10m. This is one thing that has been made possible by the additional funds that would not have been possible with the original budget. 


Also regarding Alex Mayberry, that guy is a producer; he schedules things, he makes contracts, he watches over deadlines, that is what producers do. How would that lead to something like the D3 auction house etc? 

ponymilar
ponymilar

@silvervolpe  And about marketing... yes... they do a lot of deceptive marketing.


CR at the beginning: 

The purpose of the higher stretch goals is to ensure that the game-as-described is finished in the two year time period.


CR later, ONLY after (never before) he already got all the money that he needed:


"Roberts said. “It’s always easy to be on track earlier in the process than later in the process. On my side, we’re building such a big complicated game, I can tell you right now, not everything will work out how and when we’ve planned. I’d be lying if I said we could do that."


So.... CR just called himself... a liar.

ponymilar
ponymilar

@silvervolpe @ponymilar  So... first you deny a pay wall... and now, all that you are able to say, is that you and other "normal" people will resist to the pay wall... because only aliens would not resist, after waiting 2 years to play something, thirsty and not receiving too much in-game footage, getting everything super-polished, and still, not spending any additional dime, because they are normal. 


Poor CIG marketing strategy! They directed everything for Aliens instead human beings! 


Everyone knows, that if you are starving to eat a pizza, after waiting for so long and smelling good, as soon as you get your hands on that, you definitely will eat just one slice, since you promised to yourself that eating more make you fat. Only ALIENS would not resist and, even starving for so long, would eat more than 1 slice!


/facepalm



P.S.: As I have been saying... these days, the fanboys have been denying even the CR quotes, like Peter x Christ. But you all can be sure that, if I were complaining of delays, they would come and say:


"But they already released the game, the hangar, and they soon willl release the game playable, Arena Commander... it's an interative development that never will end... the game always will be under development, but please, understand that you already getting the game, that will grow eventually".


/facepalm


And the guy even ignore what a thruthful marketing is and that companies have the LEGAL responsibility and obligation to follow. 


For him, what is write in some place, for the purpose of marketing, can be a lie, no problem 

LoL


Well... At least he is saying that CR is lying on this matter, when comparing Arena Commander with an aclaimed and successful game like World of Tanks. 


I don't doubt that it was just marketing too... still are his words... facts brought by the CEO of Cloud Imperium Games... that also said in other situations that the DFM is not for the terting purpose exclusively, as you claimed to be, but for people, INDEED, to have fun, to play against each other, "HAVING SOMETHING TO PLAY WHILE THEY WAIT FOR THE FINAL GAME"... and they repeated that MANY TIMES... 


Meanwhile everything that you said are just trying your views, that surprisingly, are different of what the CEO of the company says. 


"Because OTHERS offer alpha/beta access". Bullshit. Totally different scenario, others with what this dev team has been doing.


CR said that changed his mind, after the end of the original crowd funding campaign and decided to release his game in modules INSTEAD the traditional development cycle of Alpha/Beta

LoL


silvervolpe
silvervolpe

@ponymilar

Now I donnu aobut you mate. I don't have particularly unearthly resolve or anything. I simply recognize the difference between alpha/beta and a released game, clearly, you do not.

If you find it SO hard to hold on to your money during alpha, you may want to reconsider engaging a game that is crowdfunded because they almost always offer alpha/beta access to backers. See, to us "normal folk", we get the difference. We know that alpha means in the simplest term, that the game is not a game yet. It's there only to gain our feedback, and as a bonus, get us more excited for the final game. To us "normal folk" we won't be spending a dime that we did not fully intend to spend on the finished game. I see you fall outside of the "normal folk" category. No offense implied.

"akin to a full game" =/= full game. Does not even = game. That's marketing jargon. You can't quote him on stuff like that and try to be all technical savvy.. cuz it looks sad when people do that. We both know what he meant, so let's not play this silly lil game.

ponymilar
ponymilar

@justing16 @ponymilar  That is still speculation and marketing. What is true at this point is a Pay Wall that will be kept for years.

ponymilar
ponymilar

@silvervolpe @ponymilar  Well... You are going to play with your Aurora for 2 years maybe and watching all those fancy ships flying around, and you are not going to pay any additional dime? After waited 2 years for that, probably, you will wait for release to get other stuff... hmmmm...


That sounds like a guy, that waited for 2 years for the release of Star Wars VII, waits for a long time in the queue to buy the ticket, and when he see that the ticket is more expensive, the decides just to leave and wait to STar Wars VII be aired in some free channel on television. 


Well... The Force is strong on this one!

LoL


And it is funny how the fanboys have been denying the own CR words these days : They scream it's alpha, THERE IS NO GAME! It's meant entirely and purely as a testing, not a fun pass time... Heheheheheh):


Chris Roberts:

"Remember that with Arena Commander we are launching something much more akin to a full game (its feature set is more in line to an action arena combat game like World of Tanks) "



silvervolpe
silvervolpe

@ponymilar

Ok.. let me simplify things for you. The game is in ALPHA. There is NO game to speak of. "Pay Walls" are not possible to have when there is no released game. What the hell is the pay.. walling? Butterflies? There is no game content to wall yet. And when there is, everything.. that is EVERYTHING will be purchasable ingame with ingame currency. There won't be one single "pay wall".


AC is meant entirely, and purely as a testing alpha module, not a game, not a fun pass time (although it will be), it is an alpha module and will eventually make its way into the full game. 

If you wanna kid yourself that you HAVE to buy ships to play in an alpha module that has zero bearings on your ingame character.. go right ahead. But you're the only one here.


Seriously, you have SO much bias against the game (and obviously Chris).. and yet not one thing you said is correct.


Bottom line, I spent 35 USD or so on this game and I am not spending a dime more (except maybe for future DLCs). That is $25 less than your average AAA title. And I intend to have a hell of a time with both a full SP campaign and a full MMO experience.


What say you to that?

justing16
justing16

@ponymilar  don't want to get involved in the heated argument, :-) but I'm pretty sure chris idea is to make available the opportunity to pay cash for new ships but the option is also avaialbe to earn it in the persistent universe but this will take a longer time to achieve, squadron 42 when it is released will be a once off payment for the game, and probably a small fee for when the pu goes online. if u don't want to pay for the game you don't have to. personally i would gladly pay a small fee to play this because its a revolutionary game and is going to be the most realistic, most detailed, and immersive space sim ever created. plus occults rift is going to be awesome too :-)

naz99
naz99

@ponymilar  Wow a lot of text there just to be utterly wrong,all you people crying pay to p[lay at every opportunity need to stop.


I have followed this project every inch of the way yet i remain with realistic expectations of the game but even then i can safely say that you are talking utter nonsense i suggest yopu find out more before you start talking more crap.

ponymilar
ponymilar

@silvervolpe @ponymilar @Saidrex  Ha. Really? Well... It seems that the disguise worked, at least for you. He is releasing Arena Commander, which according with CR is "more akin to a full game (its feature set is more in line to an action arena combat game like World of Tanks)". 


The players will be stuck to the ships that they bought by real money. If you want to play with a ship that you do not own, you will have to pay real money for them. Now, not all ships will be available to AC immediately, and in case your ship is not there yet, you will be able to play with a 'loaner' ship, equivalent or next in value of yours. But as soon as your ship is released, you will be stuck to play with only your ship. 


You can play tons and tons of hours and probably will win some points (AC credits or something) that you will be able to exchange ONLY by new weapons and stuff to your ship, but NOT to exchange by other ships. 


To acquire other ships, that will be exclusively by REAL MONEY and it will be kept this way along AC versions 1, 2, 3 and possibly the further modules. This Pay Wall only will cease to exist (if you want to believe on this earlier promise) near of release (in the last Beta modules), or after release.


So, along 1 year, or maybe 2, depending of the delays, the man in charge is planning to make tons of money from people that, obviously, won't hold themselves to pay real money and acquire the ships to play before. And, here,  you can consider the majority of its current community, that he made them strategically more thirsty with some delays and with almost nothing of in-game footage shared, after all, one thing is having the ships in a description, another is looking to them flying around in the hands of your friends, fancy and super-polished ships. And that is exactly the reason that they are making the first "release" polished enough. So people do not resist and start since the beginning to acquire the ships that they do not own yet.


They even added some "tokens" for subscribers (that only received if they subscribed along 1 year at least), so they can play with whatever ship, but only by 24-hour. But don't worry. If you are not a subscriber, you will be able to BUY this token by real money, to make a test drive LoL


Can't you see the big Pay Wall and cash grab here?


It's funny how after ended the original crowd funding campaign, he changed a lot of things, decided to release super-polished and delayed modules that he considers as "release" of the game that will evolve in time, for a game that he also called as "always under development", but did not change what he was planning since the beginning to get money in case he did not have money enough yet. But now, with 45 million dollars in his hand (almost), he's going to do that anyway.


He just uses a lot of "semantics" to disguise a big Pay Wall that will be kept for a long time, and that is a big contradiction of his line of thinking that he shared in an earlier interview, saying that he hates games that basically encourage you to pay real money, and say that he does not want that... .right... he did not want, but is going to do that anyway 

/facepalm