Despite almost a decade of development with no full release, Star Citizen continues to rake in money from people putting faith in the controversial space sim. As of September 20, the game has managed to accrue over half a billion dollars in crowdfunding, solidifying itself as the most expensive game to date.
It’s gained an additional $100 million in funding across one million brand-new backers since November 2021, putting the grand total at $500,121,052 across 4,096,818 backers as of writing. It’s surprising to see so much support for a game that’s still somehow in alpha, despite its first kickstarter launching back in October 2012. It managed to raise $2 million back then, and though it’s received small packets of private funding has continued to largely source its development costs through crowdfunding.
It begs the question of whether a game with so much money behind it ever actually intends on coming out. Back in 2020, Cloud Imperium Games founder Chris Roberts said that Star Citizen’s gameplay “is not a pipe dream, nor will it take 10 to 20 years to deliver.” It’s easy for it to feel exactly like a pipe dream though, especially when fans are waiting for a full release while resources are being put into researching and developing “bedsheet deformation.” Apparently, it’s vital for both Star Citizen and its single-player spinoff Squadron 42, which is also currently tucked away in a development hidey-hole.
Regardless, the development of Star Citizen chugs along, albeit with a little less communication with the community. Earlier this year saw CIG rework how it presented roadmaps, ripping tentative dates away in order to reduce “distractions” caused by players who were expecting the features to arrive on said dates. It would be nice to see the game at least come out of alpha in the next few years, especially if it manages to bank another $100 million in the next year.