Suddenly, for no reason that I can explain, I'm getting emails, and people are even writing articles, about whether this project is dead and why I haven't been updating my backers.
Er, I HAVE been updating my backers! We talk about it almost every single day! Everyone's currently waiting for the next build of the software, which is, I admit, way behind schedule, but it's coming along pretty well. We have lively and interesting discussions all the time and I'm really grateful for people's daily involvement!
Now, if you're reading this on the Kickstarter site and you're NOT a backer, then you won't know any of this, because that's what the word 'exclusive' means. A key perk for backing my project was access to an exclusive website where everyone could discuss things, download the software, and be directly involved in the design and development process. If you don't have access to that site then it's because you didn't back me! Tough luck! :-)
If you DID back me then you know all this, although if you don't have a clue what I'm talking about then you won't be the first person to have forgotten that you have an account! You won't even be the first person to have forgotten that you have an account that you actually used a week ago. We just have too many passwords to keep track of these days, I guess. In which case, just drop me a private message on Kickstarter and I'll tell you your log-in details. Everyone really misses you!
But for anyone who didn't back me or doesn't pop in to the really rather large and active project site from time to time, NO, THIS PROJECT IS FAR FROM DEAD! You shouldn't believe everything you read on Reddit!
It's late because I made what I think is a significant breakthrough in artificial life (I'm a scientist, not just a game developer). I asked my backers whether I should just write the game I'd promised and stay on schedule, or follow up these new ideas to see where I could take them, and they urged me to follow them up. So that's what I've been doing. My Kickstarter money ran out long ago and I've been relying on the help of good friends to keep me afloat, but I'm working my butt off here! The new theories have pretty much worked out as I hoped, so it's just a matter of turning the resulting technology into something people can play with and do their own research on. It should hit the streets in the not-too-distant future.
I honestly don't know why there's a sudden flurry of doom and gloom predictions at the moment. I just described it to someone like this: it's as if I'm climbing Everest and I keep sending out selfies of me near the summit, only to get back texts complaining that I'm supposed to be on a mountain! But I've never worked harder in my life, and I'm pretty excited about where it's all going. If you didn't get the chance to back me but you're still keen about this project, I'll get there as quickly as I possibly can, I promise. Nobody wants to get it onto the market more than me!