When Wing Commander creator Chris Roberts announced his new space combat simulator Star Citizen last week and called on users to help fund it, the game's website became overloaded and buckled. In response to this, Roberts and his development studio Cloud Imperium Games today launched a Kickstarter campaign with a $500,000 target in an effort to reach the project's overall $2 million funding goal. The effort closes November 19.
Issues with the original site--which included multi-day outages--did not put a damper on the effort entirely. The fund amassed over $1 million, half of its total target, in pledges during its first week. In a statement, Roberts said this is a testament to the enthusiasm of its fans.
“At a time when most would have given up, some dedicated fans kept trying to log on and eventually were able to get through and make a pledge," he said. "We appreciate all those efforts and now with Kickstarter, we believe we have an answer for everyone."
Star Citizen has been in development at Cloud Imperium Games for 12 months. The game itself includes a "sophisticated storyline" that is set in a persistent online universe. According to Roberts, it will fuse elements of his previous games, Wing Commander and Freelancer, and support for the virtual reality headset Oculus Rift is planned.
“In recent years, game designers have stopped innovating and pushing the boundaries of what you can do in this genre,” Roberts said in a statement. “I plan on bringing that kind of development mentality back into PC gaming and space sims in particular."
Much like Guild Wars 2, Star Citizen will be available through a one-time purchase, but will not require a subscription. Players can also purchase virtual items with real-world money to customize their ships.