Elite returns on Kickstarter

David Braben asking for $2 million on popular crowd-funding site to bring back space sim franchise in form of Elite: Dangerous in March 2014 for PC.

by

Elite is attempting to make a return. Co-creator David Braben has launched a Kickstarter campaign for a new PC game in the space simulator franchise called Elite: Dangerous. Braben and his studio Frontier Developments are seeking £1.25 million (about $2 million) to develop the game.

At press time, the campaign stands at £184,745 ($295,222) pledged from 3,881 backers with 59 days remaining before it closes on January 4.

Elite: Dangerous is aiming to be an "amazing space epic" that boasts "stunning visuals" and "incredible gameplay." The game is currently scheduled to arrive only on PC during March 2014.

The game features multiplayer, a reputation-based system that affects the gameworld, a trading market, combat missions, and customizable ships. Players will begin their journeys with a number of credits, which can be used for a variety of purposes.

The original Elite launched in 1984, with two bona fide sequels, Frontier: Elite and Frontier: First Encounters, arriving in 1993 and 1995, respectively. Braben and Frontier Developments most recently developed Kinectimals, Kinect Disney Land, and Lost Winds.

Discussion

34 comments
Glorymajor
Glorymajor

Backed! Cmon guys! Its ELITE 4 to be made by the original creator! This cant go wrong!

Star Citizen is a go (what a relief!!!). If (and I really hope it happens) Elite 4 gets successful funding, 2014 ladies and gentleman, will be the year of epicness!

Hurvl
Hurvl

I thought there was a time limit, like 30 days which a lot of projects have, for Kickstarter campaigns, but I never looked it up. This is longest campaign I've ever heard about.

 

It doesn't matter to me anyway, I've got so many games to play that it would actually be irresponsible for me to back a Kickstarter project. I don't see why I would need to, either, when there's no shortage of other backers. I'll gladly buy the game, once I've reduced my backlog and it's available for purchase, if I think it's good enough, but I'm not keen on ordering a game and then waiting for a year or more before it actually arrives - damn that's some seriously long delivery times.

KittenNipples
KittenNipples

I wonder what Chris Roberts thought when he saw this?

VarietyMage
VarietyMage

To be honest, I'd rather kickstart "Wing Commander: Privateer".  Don't get me wrong, I love Elite as it stands, but Graben would have to make a lot of massive mods to it to make it worth paying for this time around.  And I have the C64 original (I play the emulated version), so I know exactly how it plays.  Privateer took the best elements of Elite and wove a story into it (though the combats were still repetitive), while also adding a lot more customization and more flavor to the planets.  Granted, for such an old game, the number of planet representations was limited, but they switched them up fairly well and made unique ones for the major story planets (Oxford, etc).  And given that there were so many planets in the 8 universes (galaxies?) that Graben had to use a random generator for some things, I doubt he'll be able to give full attention to each and every planet (maybe not even as much as Privateer).  I just think I'll sit back on this one.  I don't want multiplayer, either - if I wanted that, EVE Online would do quite sufficiently.  I want single-player only, a robust story, and vibrant, unique planets aplenty.  And more commodity types, so things don't get so routine (at least at first).

brok
brok

Could this possibly lead to a remake of Star Control II? To me that game looks like Sid Meier's Pirates in space- and equally remakable.

4r0d0
4r0d0

Never played Elite and from what I've read, the game was ahead of it's time and a joy to experience.  Having said that I am very skeptical.

 

Kickstarter is starting to pick up a lot of steam from the entertainment industry but, you can see common themes beginning to appear like Space Sims for example. When Chris Roberts presented Star Citizen, it was the first next gen Space Sim Concept in quite some time. Next, we started hearing about Strike Suit Zero, another space combat game (though maybe not as ambitious as Star Citizen still looks very promising). Now we come to Elite, a beloved game by apparently a lot of people, slam dunk right? I don't think so. From what it looks like Mr. Braben is probably trying to jump on the "kickstarter Space Sim" train as it is leaving the station because he has nothing to show for this concept. That and after viewing Frontier Developments Wiki page.... little concerned with the caliber of games they have been cranking out.....this seems like a dramatic departure from anything they have previously worked on. Maybe a little bit of an over reach?

 

Now, I'm all for a PC gaming renaissance but, let get quality first... not quantity. I remember how excited I was that Mechwarrior was making a comeback...... yeah I played some open beta.......lets just say I'm reserving my excitement for very few games now a days. 

brunorr
brunorr

I do miss piloting the Cobra MkIII.

poster012
poster012

What the hell is this game categorized as? I can't find it listed under video games.

Franko_3
Franko_3

fantastic, they plan to release a full fledged space simulation in 1 1/2 years and they don't show a picture of this game, not even a single concept art. Star Citizen asked for 2M$, but they had a few trailers and a few pictures. I am not sure with that one

plasticreality
plasticreality

Strange that they're doing this at the same time as the Star Citizen kickstarter, but it does sound cool.  I just remembered the original Elite from my Commodore 64 days - I used to love that game. 

 

The only thing that concerns me is they don't show any basic gameplay or screenshots, so who knows how far along this project is.  Also, it seems like you would need more than $2 million to create this type of game.

WTF2000
WTF2000

why would you start this when star citizen is still trying to get crowdfunding...at least wait till its done so they don't cannibalize each others market share.

SolidTy
SolidTy

Another Kickstarter, these things are growing like weeds.

 

Of course, it's for Elite this time...

snxx
snxx

Tim Schafer asked for 400k to create a new adventure game.

Jane Jansen asked for 300k to do the same.

Stoic asked for 100k to make The Banner Saga.

The guys from Harebrained Schemes asked for 400k to make a new 2D turn-based Shadowrun game.

Al Lowe for 500k to remake Leisure Suit Larry.

Brian Fargo asked for 900k to make Wasteland 2.

Obsidian asked for 1.1 million for a new "Infinity Engine style" RPG.

 

These guys, Frontier Developments, are asking for 2 million dollars to make an space sim... now, I'm a backer of all those projects I previously listed, but I think a 2 million dollars game is a bit too big and too risky for a Kickstarter. I don't know where exactly to draw the line, but this new space sim sounds WAY too ambitious for a crowd funded project.

 

"Amazing space epic", "stunning visuals", "incredible gameplay", "multiplayer", "reputation-based system that affects the game world", "trading market", "customizable ships", "squeezing the last drop of performance from modern computers", a 235 people team... All that sounds like they went overboard. The scope is huge and I believe the chances of things going wrong are bigger than the chances of everything working out. It may be a "lack of faith", but I'm don't think that's the path Kickstarted games should follow.

DarkSaber2k
DarkSaber2k

Well somebody sure is trying to ride the coat-tails of Star Citizen aren't they. (And yes, I am aware that if there was no Elite back then we'd have no Star Citizen today, but that was then and this is now.)

CUDGEdave
CUDGEdave

Yes! A classic! Nice on David.. I had nightmares with the original Elite using anti piracy device "Lenslok" what an annoyance that was!

---Cipher---
---Cipher---

Sounds sweet, we need more games from this genre, But can they change the name please? "Elite:dangerous" is only slightly better sounding than MOH's "warfighter" name or "Revengence"

jonwight
jonwight

"Elite: Dangerous" seriously??? maybe they should have a separate kickstarter to fund a new name while they are at it. 

PETERAKO
PETERAKO

more space sims! yes thats what i want to SEE!

TheTrueObelus
TheTrueObelus

Ahh a chance to kill Thargoids again. I'm in

Raeldor
Raeldor

Man, I used to LOVE Elite on the old BBC Micro when I was a kid.  Would love to see this return, but can't help think that if he pooled his ideas with Chris Roberts, that together they could make the ultimate space sim.

Daemoroth
Daemoroth

 @Hurvl Well, think of it more as supporting a project that wouldn't see the light of day otherwise because "focus testing" would prevent any publisher from funding it (Since it's not a military shooter).

snxx
snxx

 @Franko_3 Well, actually Star Citizen only asked for 500k, that's 25% of what Frontier Developments is asking.

tim1935
tim1935

 @Franko_3 Not only that but Star Citizen had a complete tech demo with an ingame working engine.

telefanatic
telefanatic

 @Volgin THQ is about to go bankrupt, how can it fund a  game when the whole company is worth 10 milion ? lol

 

---Cipher---
---Cipher---

@snxx I think kick starters are utilizing the "foot-in-the-door" technique. At first kick starter development was new and no one was sure if it would work, now it seems every kick starter tries topping the last. Soon, kick starters will be Spending like the new AAA publisher.

DarkSaber2k
DarkSaber2k

 @snxx Not to mention it sounds like he pretty much copied all the main points that were presented at the Star Citizen unveiling a few weeks ago.

highlanderjimd
highlanderjimd

 @PETERAKO go back to your mindless fps games you console using troll. Elite is one of the materpeices of the gaming industry

VarietyMage
VarietyMage

 @Daemoroth  @VarietyMage I looked at the official website, and the main game seems to be just like Diablo 3, internet-only.  They say that there will be private servers, but the main "universe" will be a shared internet server.  I cannot play such a thing due to my crappy internet connection, and I will not subject my keyboard and desk to the same fist-slamming that D3 generated on an almost hourly basis due to the required internet connection.  Just say no to MMO, because MMO ain't single-player.  Period.  Sorry, Chris Roberts, that's an epic fail for you.  :(

VarietyMage
VarietyMage

And still I wait for a single-player-only space flight/trading/fighting sim...  :(

snxx
snxx

 @Volgin  @Franko_3 You're right and I stand corrected. Took the time to read a bit more about it and noticed it's way a more ambitious project than I originally realized.