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Star Command is a spaceship management game for iOS, Android and  now for PC/Mac. Build your ship, hire your crew, explore the galaxy!
Star Command Galaxies is the sequel to the 2012 hit mobile game. Manage your crew and explore a randomly generated galaxy with planets, ships, and more! Join the alpha today for PC/Mac/Linux.
Star Command Galaxies is the sequel to the 2012 hit mobile game. Manage your crew and explore a randomly generated galaxy with planets, ships, and more! Join the alpha today for PC/Mac/Linux.
5,613 backers pledged $151,806 to help bring this project to life.

Re: Some Questions About Our Second Kickstarter

We recently had a comment on our boards that we felt deserved a long, thought out answer. You can see the questions and concerns below in italics, and our response below it. We have heard all of these separately before, but the author was kind enough to put it all into one big question, which we are more than happy to address. WARNING: LOTS OF READING BUT IT SHOULD EXPLAIN A LOT OF OUR PERSPECTIVE. Read on:

The Comment:

Ok, had to back to make this point as no one else seems willing to. It's going to be long, so....fair warning.

I, like many people was very interested in the initial IOS project. You know....the one that's now missed three or four dates?

So....Imagine my surprise to see "WarBalloon" back asking for money for a PC/Mac version....And mentioning that they're seeking more money partially to help pay for the IOS game.

This is absolutely beyond asinine and the very definition of Kickstarter "double-dipping".

These guys have already shown they don't have decent project management/business skills as not only have they been unable to meet self-imposed deadlines, but they blew through their first round of Kickstarter funding with extremely questionable budgeting and expenditures.

The latest from them has been IOS release "sometime this summer", which....If they're asking for more money to, in part, finish the IOS game there's no way in hell they're going to meet that broad range either.

Then they unilaterally decide to change a core component of the gameplay mechanics after collecting money from the IOS/Android project based on the mechanic?

At this point, I'm shocked anyone would be lining up to give more money to these guys when, to date, they've been unable to deliver on the original project. You know, the one that required all backers to pay for the IOS game on release? The one they were thinking of pricing somewhere in the $7 range?

The one that should have been providing revenue to finance a PC/Mac port?
At this point, I haven't been able to find evidence that either of these guys have ever produced an IOS or PC/MAC title to date.

That being the case, this is really starting to seem more like "let's grab what we can, while we can". But.....hopefully they're not going to blow all this too, because eventually people are going to start demanding either a game or the refund of their money.

Our Reponse:

Couple thoughts.

First of all, thank you for your dollar.

Second, we know its a double dip. It's in the title. We aren't hiding that, so your observation seems....redundant.

Third, the reason you know that we dont have "decent" project management/business skills is because we openly post those things. We have an open doors policy, and in the spirit of kickstarter we try and keep everyone as connected and in the loop of our decision making process as possible. Clearly we aren't going to look for approval for gameplay changes, like converting from a tactical turn based game into a real time one - cause the bottom line is it's our game and it was more fun to have the chaos. We don't have to defend ourselves cause in the end people can just decide the game sucks, tell their friends it sucks and review it and tell the world that it sucks. We don't think this will be anywhere near the case, but that option is available to anyone that plays the game.

We also did not "blow through" our money. We posted an entire article outlining how careful we tried to be with our money. We put TONS of thought into every dime. If hiring CPA's, getting a business together, making sure we are legal in regards to copyrighted content and getting equipment for playtesting is reckless - then we are guilty as charged. Reading a bit between the lines, I think your real disagreement is that you wouldn't have spent the money the way that we did. You are welcome to your opinion, and we are confident we would probably have some thoughts for your budgets as well. However, as we have said, we spent our money wisely and with lots of forethought. There are things we would do differently, but unfortunately our time machine kickstarter did not get funded. But we digress.

As for release dates - yep, we've missed a bunch. Again, reading between the lines, it feels as if you are implying we have been misleading or irresponsible with our time - again, an assertion we strongly disagree with. Ask Valve, Blizzard, Nintendo or just about any other great developer about missed dates. As the immortal Shigeru Miyamoto said "A delayed game is eventually good, a bad game is bad forever." These are words we live by. Our model for operation is Valve - we love everything they do, the way they treat the community and, to your point, the way they don't really talk about when anything is coming out until its just about ready to go. See: Team Fortress. We, of course, do not have that luxury, as we are a "publicly funded" company and feel that would should share as much of the development process as possible. I can assure you, our next title will be developed in much more secrecy.

That said, we aren't happy about missed dates, but the bottom line is the game will be released when it's awsome, or damn near it. We don't want to develop this game any longer than we have to, and this is far from a Duke Nukem venture - but our game is very large, especially for a three person team (which is why we have another kickstarter, a point you seem to be missing). We would self evaluate and say the game is an 8/10 right now. We want it to be around 9.5 and that last 1.5 is the hardest - that is the polish, balance and bug squashing that too often in this industry is glazed over because of impatience or release schedules.

As to your point regarding our previous title releases: your are 100% correct. We have not made a game before this (our developer has some small releases, but as a team we are collective virgins). And from our perspective that is the EXACT reason kickstarter exists - people who have a vision, drive and passion for a project but don't have those traditional outlets to find funding to make those projects a reality. We do find it a bit frustrating to see arguments like yours - "why are these new people making a game, they should have a release before they get funded!" when companies like Double Fine (and don't misunderstand us - we love Double Fine and think they are a net positive for the kickstarter community) who probably have acces to things like banks and private investors use the kickstarter community, but when a small unproven group comes up the filter becomes much higher. Isn't that the whole point? Help the unproven.

As to the original Kickstarters and the $7 price point etc. There is a lot of nonsense here, but we will address it none the less. If we could give the game away for free on mobile devices we would. Period. But we have been in contact with Apple and we have been in contact with Google representatives and the bottom line is that it's basically impossible. There are literally 50 reasons why we cannot do this, and undoubtably you will say "well there must be a workaround" and we can confidently say there is not. Which is why we were more than happy, in fact ecstatic, to give the PC/Mac version (which we can control) to our original group of kickstarters for free. Also, the game will be under $5. Personally speaking, it is a strange time in gaming when a $7 game is considered outlandishly priced, but those are the trends and that is something we cannot control.

So, is this a "let's get money while we can" type of scheme? I suppose it would be disingenuous to say that it isn't - we have spent over a year getting people interested in our game, generating a community and listening to feedback about Star Command. We received literally five requests a day since we closed our first kickstarter asking for ways to support us. We also have thousands of requests for a PC version, which we clearly listened to. So we did use our momentum and our fan base to start another kickstarter. But this isn't for us buying cars or mac book pros or hookers and blow. The funds are purely for development and making the game great. We plan to hire 1-2 devs and supplemental contract artists to blow out more content. We are going to port the game over to PC/Mac and make it so that the game is cross compatible on all platforms so you can play it on your mobile device, boot the same ship up on your tablet during that meeting you dont care about, and then sit down at your desk and pretend to work while you actually play Star Command. That to us is cool and a fun challenge, and one that the community is going to help become a reality.

We welcome all opinions, and although we disagree with 95% of what you have said, we do defend your right to call us into question and wonder what it is that we are doing. We hope that you can at least understand our perspective.

The bottom line: we value our communities money, time, support and enthusiasm more than you can probably imagine. Understand, through kickstarter and other social media our fans have made our childhood dreams a reality: to make games. We treat that gift with the utmost respect and though we may make some decisions you disagree with, we always have the best of intentions at heart.

Hope that helps.

The Warballoon Team

tl;dr - We disagree. Your money, time and faith is in good hands. Rest easy.


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    1. Jason on

      "We never promised a product on day X - it will be released when it is done."

      "As for release dates - yep, we've missed a bunch."

    2. Star Command 2-time creator on

      We never promised a product on day X - it will be released when it is done.

    3. Jason on

      not wild about how long the original project has been delayed and tbh the attitude of this post isn't the best either, ie if you have a problem with the delay that's you not them

      love the way the game looks and i look forward to playing it but if i promise you a product on X day and take your money for it then you have every right to be upset if i dont deliver that product on that day. the snarkiness from the devs is mis-placed i think. "i'm sorry its delayed, i understand where you're coming from, we're just trying to make it good" would go alot farther than this confrontational crap

      yes, the devs have the right to get feelings hurt if someone implies they're bad at their jobs and wasting money but its alot easier to not be upset when you're the ones holding the cash and that should be kept in mind

      spoken as someone who didn't contribute to the first kickstarter and so isn't mad about anything. I just hate to see customer communications descend to the level of "we're going to mock you in front of the community for daring to question u s"

    4. Missing avatar

      Daniel Petzold on

      Just don´t misunderstand - this isn´t for preordering some finished game but to help people with vision and an Idea to take some of their "need money preassure". You directly support those guys who make the game and thats the point - they say thank you and give you some kinda gifts in return, just like a copy of the game. As it goes for me 9,0 / 10 and some updates would be awesome :-)

    5. saiqlo on

      Supported before reading all these comments, but REALLY HAPPY I supported after reading this update, including this gem: "But this isn't for us buying cars or mac book pros or hookers and blow." Game looks awesome, and looking forward to it.

    6. James on

      Agreed, a little stand-off'ish, but I don't really mind. I don't care if they double dip and run two projects from one game because, frankly, I'll buy and enjoy both of them. More games need to do this and release on more platforms. Imagine if, for example, Red Dead Redemption got an extra $100,000 to be released on PC. We wouldn't want that?

      Keep up the good work and just focus on releasing an excellent product. Don't pretend to be EA, super-professional, and then miss deadlines anyways. Just be an indie-developer!

    7. mjc354 on

      This update sounds standoffish.

    8. Devon Rampe on

      @Tom: some people like this who back with only $1, will withdraw their pledge later after they have left their negative comments.

    9. Tom Neale on

      First off i'm a backer of this project in every sense of the word. I'm glad you've responded to this pertinent question. You do come off a little aggressive though this could be an insulting assertion. However don't be dismissive about the pledge - every penny counts and this person has felt strongly enough to pay to be heard. I also wouldn't draw too many parallels with the good folk at Valve (episode 3 anyone).
      Still I'm keen as mustard to see this project completed and I'm glad you are persevering with cross platform play (I know the powers that be hate that).

    10. Gaston Ragnar Rippinger on

      cross platform ship continuity?! that sounds AWESOME :)
      but i see one problem: i backed KS 2 for PC, which means i get the secret room and the pet, but i didn't back the first one (cuz i was late...not cuz i didn't want to. i just didn't know). anyway, how will that work?
      will the secret room just be missing?

      and, to be on topic:
      i have faith in this project and am very excited about the game, but i must agree with *one* small point: 7 bucks is a bit steep for a mobile game.
      that is all the "criticism" i have.

      thank you guys for being open and keep it up.
      (and, like others have also said: thanks for the pooping dog!)

    11. Devon Rampe on

      Love you guys, keep up the good work! Excited for this game! :)

    12. REkz kaRZ on

      I just backed for $10. I'd back more, but I've got other things needing my money right now. BUT, if your game is truly great, I must donate something towards it.
      I'm hoping to see something that satisfies my "Space 1999" and also my Star Trek and possibly even my Firefly/Serenity needs? (I guess that last was a bit of a reach. But consider it -- how about a few space cowboys!??!)
      re: controversy (& spec this quote: Your response was much to personalized and spiteful and it could damage your company image. ... this update lacks professionalism ...) I think your response was fairly respectful and not too pedantic. You did ok, I thought, and sounded like gamers.
      Please make your next dates -- or don't offer dates? Just an idea...

    13. Wesley Obenshain on

      With all this going on, I feel the urge to agree with some of the other commentators. As a personal response, this is fine. As a company statement, it is somewhat unprofessional. While reading the tirade, I had the distinct urge to donate more. While reading your response, I had the distinct urge to drop my donation. In the end, I don't plan to do either (although I'm somewhat disappointed by the decision to switch to real time - something I missed) because both were very knee-jerk reactions. Kind of like your post (see what I did there). In the future, please be aware that mere perception of your company's professionalism can affect your funding.

    14. Missing avatar

      Robert on

      You guys are great, open and from what I've heard and seen, very capable. Always issues when starting a new company, especially for the first time.

      Im hoping you hit your target on this one too.

    15. JB on

      I love what you guys are doing, double dip the hell outta Kickstarter! In fact, as long as people are willing to continue to throw money at you, keep collecting. We live in a time where gamers are sitting in the seat of power, directly supporting many of the games we want to play while letting the rest dry up and blow away in the wind. If we didn't want you to do more kickstarting, you wouldn't be seeing that large number by the dollar sign at the top of the page!

    16. Chris on

      I'd join in but eh, I replied on the Facebook page.

    17. Devin VanDalinda on

      I was wondering if there was going to be some cross compatibility from phone to PC, so that's cool. I also remember that first post mentioned on how you guys handled the first Kickstarter budget. The points brought up then made sense to me. I'd like to see SC make it to the PC, so hopefully this will make the $100,000 mark.

      I remember that I first learned about SC from and IGN article from March of last year. Maybe to get SC news out there you can convince some gaming site to do an update on your project, or an interview on how developing a game through Kickstarter went..

    18. Erich L. on

      @Jason Joyce: Fair enough. It becomes more a question of whether delivery will happen rather than when. Jason Horn has some good questions I wouldn't mind knowing the answer to as well.

    19. Jason Joyce


      To address the 'you aren't Valve, Blizzard or Nintendo' comment....It's not a matter of saying they can't delay a game. It's a matter of having three guys comparing themselves to established companies and then overlook the fact that those companies of a past track record and performance that have earned them the confidence of gamers.

      These guys have no prior track record to look back on and say 'ok, they might not be the fastest, but they always deliver'.

      And for those fervently pointing in Ouya's direction, we have a project team comprised of business and tech gadgets reporters working on a package due to appear fairly soon, so....We're very familiar with the issues surrounding Ouya.


      No, I don't think Warballoon would intentionally take the $100,000 and run. I don't think it's too much of a stretch, though, to envision a situation where Warballoon has stretched themselves too thin now that they're working on mobile/PC/Mac platforms and apparently DLC/expansion content as well.

      I can see them getting into a situation where they've overextended themselves in terms of resources, run out of capital and come looking for a third shot at the well or simply gradually disappear with increasingly lengthy gaps between updates until they just stop coming at all.

      After all, we're talking about a couple guys who, until they recently bought the site were "operating" from a tumblr account, so... a healthy dose of skepticism isn't unwarranted.

    20. Missing avatar

      Jason Horn on

      Warballoon, thank you for posting this update. I too was having question if I should have backed this project, but decided to back it because of the vision you have in taking StarCommand to the next level. Thank you for letting me become a backer and investor within your organization.

      After reading the update and corresponding comment has caused me to wonder what has Warballoon learned from the previous KS venture? How is WarBalloon doing it differently for this project? How does Warballoon plan on spending the $100,000 budgeted (line items)? What is the plan if Warballoon runs over budget on this current project? Upon successful funding, what dates is Warballoon expecting to hire developers? Has Warballoon already chosen its developers? ect.

      There are a lot more questions which could be asked, but what I believe the community is wanting a good business plan on bringing StarCommand to life. Once posted, I firmly believe you will get to 100% funding.

      Now WarBalloon, show us that we have put our money, time and faith into good hands. Not only for the backers, but success is the best revenge...

    21. Erich L. on

      The response could have been constructed a little better, but I've learned from earlier postings that you guys aren't the most prudent when it comes to watching what you say, (Thanks Australia,) so I'm used to it.
      I just want to address the calls of people saying "But you aren't Valve, Blizzard, or Nintendo!" Do they have to be in order to delay a game? I've been waiting for Torchlight 2 all summer and it's been delayed and delayed since March. I've given in my money too, and it looks like it won't come out until September at least, but I'm not complaining. "It's done when it's done" isn't the purview of Blizzard alone. So these guys don't have a PR manager and they don't have good business sense--that's fine. So long as the three of them put out a good game at the end of the day and learn to do the other things along the way, my money is well spent.
      Just do learn from these experiences, guys. My development dollars aren't just for the game, but also for you. Develop your other skills, release Star Command, and come back and release a second game worth releasing, and I'll consider my contribution here worthwhile.
      Cheers for the update. Very interesting reading all the comments that followed it.

    22. Missing avatar

      Drake on

      I know what OUYA is doing , and I don't have beef with it cause they should have sticked to 20k units only , now they have to find a factory to produce 100k units or more ...
      The scope has gone out of control , the money is not in yet .
      But like said , it is in it infancy stage ! ... that is what kickstarter is about .
      Why do you think project that was already in development doesn't bring in as much money .
      As projects on infancy stage , the net is wide enough to find all the details you need .

      Look warballoon will probaly had more pledge from me , if they could keep to there original concept instead of saying it suck we like chaos ... that is extremely immature PR shows programmers EGO.
      well if EGO is that big you shouldn't come to kickstarter , you are begging people for money .
      Best be quiet about what you think and do , even if people infuriate you .

      Now I will accept star command cause the idea is terrific , dlc shows potential . the fun factor is important
      But the way it is heading I am not inclined anymore to offer postive critisme , and anybody with a brain , with dealing with apple just have a week free trial for the IOS , with a update you can send codes to those people with kickstart support to download the update for free.
      Since 30% of 0 remains 0 . anybody with enough dealings of marketing understand that concept .

      And apple knows it as well , ouya look is for the people who believed in pebbles .
      yeah in the end as long they ship yeah even with no support from DEV , people still have a expensive media center .

      Sorry check out the tons of product that has been funded by kickstarter that has the same concept idea as OUYA , software development is not hardware development .
      Software 95% done , is as good as finished , always 5% bugs contents and other issue to work out , infact in this modern day , expect a software to be finished at 80% .
      Cause you seen any programs released with 0 updates ?

      This is what pisses me off the most , perfection is never achieved on the first go , and fanbase don't come in the millions . even for company like Bioware , Blizzard .

    23. Will Buckingham

      @Drake - Unlike projects like this, the OUYA project is not Kickstarting to pay for development costs. They are basically pre-selling a console at the exact price they say they will be retailing it for... in March. Less than a year out, they're essentially taking preorders for a console that only has a prototype and no finalized control scheme. And the dev support they claim to have locked down are telling everyone else they don't know if they're going to support OUYA or not. And then there's the touch to controller conversion required for all apps running on the system. Plus the "free games" claim has such a wide definition that basically every demo in the app store would qualify, whether it has significant content to play or not.

      I have no doubt some kind of box will be shipped in March. It doesn't take long to manufacture a design sent to China. The question is whether or not the system will actually be any kind of success, and frankly, everything so far points to a lot of unanswered questions and vague contradictory statements. You're absolutely right, it's a project in its infancy stages, but they're claiming to be ready to launch early next year. That's why it's worrisome.

    24. Missing avatar

      Drake on

      I think people totally messing up kickstarter ouya is a kickstart project that needs budget to finalise the concept , offcourse it is in it infancy stage !

      What people really do not understand , is that people here donate out of the goodness of there heart, well basically if you want something 100% confirmed , wait till retail .
      That is basically it , what concern for most people is either believe in the project .
      Or do not believe in a project !

      so accusing other projects to lay off blaim , is the worst thing to do .
      Infact people shouldn't even be on kickstarter , maybe the success of kickstarter have drawn the wrong crowd .. in that case kickstarter will end soon enough .
      We all know it sooner or later will happen .

      Now so far the lesson of kickstarter is that people are there own PR own Manager own word to mouth commercial to get more donations .
      Or have others who strongly believe in this project , advertise for them .

      Now when original funding for a movie goes into making a trilogy , well then people have been hoaxed . that is what this update teaches people .
      The response while genuine , teaches warballoon to do one thing , do not alienate your donators.
      Since we are the ones with the money , yes you guys can develop the game anyway you like .
      Promote it anyway you like , but a few issues already have been put under the spot light .

    25. Will Buckingham

      @Jason Joyce - I don't think it's safe to assume ANYTHING on as volatile a market as the iOS app store, and frankly, half your complaints are either answered on the description page or in the above reply. I don't think you'll be happy with any result until they post in big bold letters on the front of the Kickstarter page "WE MESSED UP AND NEED MORE MONEY TO FINISH THE iOS PROJECT! PLEASE HELP US!". You seem more interested in vilifying the team for past mistakes, perceived or otherwise, than in wanting to see the project succeed.

      Your "hardballs" are really just paranoia or already answered if you bothered to read. Told you flat out you're not getting a free copy of the iOS/Android app because Apple and Google wouldn't cooperate. They probably wanted a full 30% cut of the final app price for every copy given to a backer, and they obviously can't afford that if they're using this Kickstarter to do a final polish pass on the app in the first place. Those other Kickstarter projects probably agreed to flat out pay for a retail copy for each backer, and if they're going to go up at $.99 like most of the junk on the app store, maybe that's financially viable for them to do. But when you've been told they can't do it here, suddenly the project "stinks".

      Give me a break. Like Joern said, go take your news nose over to the OUYA project where they don't have a production model, or finalized controller, and game devs they say are locked in for launch are tweeting to the effect of "Uh, yeah, we don't know because our Android version kind of sucks." (Hi Minecraft!) That is a project that reeks of failure waiting to happen. $100 up front for a box that, if it materializes, will likely play a lot of poorly ported demoware, because no devs are going to give out actual free games if they don't have Farmville style free-2-play mechanics covering them.

    26. Shane Ching on

      I asked this question in a message directly to you but didn't get a responce. :*(
      He it is again....

      In the Andriod/Ipad version your were planning expansions like "Away Teams" which allow you to visit the surface of planets and "Alien Command" allowing you to build and take command of an alien ship.
      Are these being planned for the PC version?

    27. Zombra on

      Underlying hostility aside, it seems like JJ's post was filled with reasonable concerns. Warballoon's response appears to reasonably address those concerns. Anyone feeling doubtful has 3 weeks to look at the arguments on both sides and make a decision what to do with their dollars.

      Personally, I don't see anything mega-fishy here. I intend to maintain my pledge and look forward to a fun and hilarious PC game, maybe even before the end of the year. If the release date gets pushed back? Hello? How long have you been a PC gamer?

    28. Jörn Huxhorn

      @Jason Joyce
      Its not so much about you being an asshole but about you being overly suspicious without too much reason for it. If you are looking for a fishy project then simply head over to OUYA.
      Delays are business as usual in case of software projects. That is true for big companies with huge teams and large amounts of cash but is even worse so for small companies.
      The fact that stuff developed using money from this project will also end up in the iOS/Android versions of the game is a feature and not a bug. Its a win for everyone involved with the only cost of waiting a little bit longer. I honestly fail to see the downside.

      Or are you seriously suggesting that War Balloon will run of with our money?? If not, what ARE you suggesting?

    29. Phil

      PC version(awesome as it may be) aside, I see a first time game company making a mistake about how much making a game was going to cost, and reaching out to the fans for more support. If kickstarter wasn't here, and this was just a big bank loan then they'd likely be stuffed - one more indie company goes down the drain and we lose a potentially brilliant game on multiple platforms. They've got a second chance to pull in funding here. They've made their case and it's up to us to decide if we want to give them that chance. I missed the first starter, but am happy to be in on this.
      Now if a few months down the line they come up with a $500K kickstarter to finish the mobile, PC versions and make a boardgame version too, I'd be a little worried about where my funding was going, but as it is I'm happy to give them the second chance - if this turns out to be all it plans to be, imagine what self-funded games they'll produce down the line.

      (be happy to get a boardgame version too, once these have been released of course!)

    30. Jason Joyce


      To begin with, it's safe to assume that they likely have a minimum of 1,200 sales guaranteed from backers the last time around. From the initial pricing they were discussing on the previous project, you're looking around $5-7 a sale.

      Not a bad start.

      With their publicity, it's not unlikely that they'd get a spotlight from Apple which tends to have the effect of dramatically boosting sales numbers. More so when the forum crowd at Toucharcade gets wind it's available...

      I highly doubt they'd have an issue reaching the "what's hot" and/or top selling lists.

      I just think more people should be willing to call them out when things they say or do don't seem to add up rather than jumping on the 'they're just little guys trying to get a game out, they're the underdogs'.

      And I like the concept of what they're pitching....It's just that some things here don't smell right, and as a newsie by trade, I can't help but throw out a few hardballs.

      I mean....take the whol IOS thing. How hard is it to say 'We've decided providing backers with a copy isn't feasible' or 'it's just not something we can swing with our business plans'? I don't think anyone would take issue with that.

      But to come out and say, as they're still saying, that it's due to a limitation on Apple/Google/whoever's part is not only disingenuous, it's somewhat insulting. I think a lot here are familiar with Zombies Run or other projects who haven't run into this 'limitation'....

      Same deal with project here. Apparently a significant number of people are under the impression that every cent here goes toward strictly the PC/Mac port.....Don't see Warballoon going out of there way to say 'Actually....a portion's being used to finish the mobile version'....

      It's the glossing over details and the omissions or misconception that aren't corrected that raise my hackles, but....

      I'm just a jaded asshole wasting my life in a dying industry, so....what do I know?

    31. Jörn Huxhorn

      War Balloon is doing the right thing.

      They simply can't afford to release a mediocre game since they would be eaten alive by disappointed and/or angry backers. They also need good reviews in relevant media as well as good ratings in the respective app stores for the success that Star Command (hopefully) deserves. If it takes off properly it could end up as a featured game in the AppStore which translates into instant $$$.

      If Star Command would get a buggy/unfinished release then it would receive unimpressed ratings by online media. And they only re-review updates of games they already considered remarkable...

      So please don't rush a release.

      I really appreciate indie developers that try to deliver high-quality. I'd rather wait a bit longer for a properly polished result that does not disintegrate in my hands.

      I was one of the beta testers of World of Goo and I was very, very impressed by the amount of scrutiny they put into the game before they finally released it into the public. It didn't crash on me even once, neither did any of the beta releases. And I'm not sure if they had to release a patch at all.

      This is the exact opposite of what I was used to from big companies like EA.

      The original project said the following concerning release date:
      "We're currently shooting for a Holiday 2011 release. But the game is rather large - so the ultimate rule is when its awesome, it will be out."

      Lets assume scrutiny and high standards are the reason for the "delay" instead of incompetence or even worse. Given that the release date is (and always was) "when its done", I fail to see a real delay at all.

      That said, I'm REALLY happy that this second Kickstarter project was started.

      Like others, I only heard about the first project right after the fact, i.e. right after it got funded.

      And, yes, the initial project seems to have a way too small funding goal and I was actually amazed that it did reach that goal at all since a copy of the game wasn't part of the perks. It would have probably been wiser, in hindsight, to initially do the PC/Mac project (including copies of the game as perks) with iOS/Android releases as stretch goals - but being smarter after the facts is always a rather easy thing...

      The only thing that really bothers me about this update is the sentence "I can assure you, our next title will be developed in much more secrecy.". It would be very sad if this would really be the case since I enjoy being "part" of the development, even if I only play a voyeuristic role in it.

      Thanks for the transparency and honesty. Please try to keep it up - in both this and your future projects.

    32. Michael Matzat on

      Rule Nr. 1 of the internet. Do not argue with angry people on the internet, they are just there for the attention.

      There was so much plain wrong and uninformed blah in that complaint i don´t know why it gets put here. Please use your time and energie on making the game and having fun, this was a wast.

    33. Adam Ridgway on

      Surely you should spend a little on hookers and blow? A happy developer is a good developer ;)

    34. Missing avatar

      Martin Kramer on

      I think this is a fair response to reasonable concerns. Concerns that might have been addressed before.
      @Charles Moore: I doubt this would work. This would mean to get around to give Apple their 30% cut of a sale. Apple would not like that.
      What I saw on another project was for the developer to buy the game for full price and "gift" it to the backer. Thus giving Apple the 30%. - Not sure this will work in practice though.

    35. Gamevine on

      What an asshole. Game developers push back deadlines all the time. What do you expect out of a tiny indie development crew. These people have been open, and honest throughout the process. Take as much time as you need to complete the project Star Command. When I get my game I want the best product possible. I don't need another game that was rushed through development.

    36. Chad Moore on

      Well, there is a way to provide the mobile game on iOS for free. What you would need to do is put the game out but have downloadable or unlockable content in the game. You would do this with a lite version of the game, so anybody downloading it would not get full functionality, but you would provide codes to unlock full functionality. Then you also put the fully functional game on the market for your asking price, which I believe you said was under $5. This allows backers to get the iOS game for free, offers a lite trial version to others, but also puts your game on the market for a price.

    37. Will Buckingham

      @Jason Joyce - What numbers do you have that say the unpolished release of the iOS title would have earned enough revenue to high a PC programmer without any external funding? They could be leaving any early framework development to the new hire and then once the iOS version is finished moving over to that project as well. You honestly have no way of knowing. They're asking for further funding, the majority of which will likely be toward this programmer's salary, and you have a choice to make of whether or not you trust them as a programming group. If you don't, don't give them more money. I didn't get a chance to help out with the first Kickstarter, so having seen the trailer, the art, and heard people raving about it from the demo at PAX, I want to help. If you don't trust them, end your financial interest in their game here. Why would you keep giving money to someone when you're suspicious of their every move, despite them being transparent about the problems and delays they encountered?

    38. elcalrissian on

      Im proud you guys take the Independent route, although it appears you hit the un-spoken side of business - that everyone is out to get you. the First KS was hurt because of non-development Business related costs.

      I hope there's no further Regulation or Redtape - the public will benefit from your personal and individual innovation!

    39. Jason Truxal on

      @Jason Joyce Whoa, whoa, naturally! Any statement that a backer would be given something should definitely be fulfilled. What I meant was they didn't HAVE to offer anything to begin with. It seems to be a trend to offer a copy of the game cheaper than retail for backing, but it's not a requirement. Instead, they offered us goodies for our support instead of the actual game itself. The fact people are upset the mobile version wasn't offered or still isn't offered is (to me) not a valid argument by anyone since it's not a requirement to offer the finished product to anyone under any tier. Sorry, I tend to write confusingly.

    40. Jason Joyce


      I think perhaps I wasn't clear on that.....

      My issue isn't that they want to charge for the IOS/Android copy. That's an odd decision, but, ok...

      Where it raised concerns is that these guys should have had a guaranteed revenue stream, going by the assumption that anyone who pledged would have been very likely to have purchased the app.

      Likewise, that number of almost guaranteed sales would likely translate into interest and other purchases, particularly coupled with the hype Star Command has generated.

      That being the case, it's concerning that they decide to ostensibly launch a second Kickstarter for a PC/Mac port (which should have been more than covered by revenue). Even odder that a small team wants to take that on before even getting an initial release out.

      Apparently people are overlooking it, which I'm sure relieves "Warballoon", but buried in the copy for this Kickstarter is a key as to the 'Why now, and why Kickstarter?' question -- they need more money to finish the mobile version and since Kickstarter frowns on multiple rounds for the same project, a PC/Mac port lets them get around that clause.

      And yes, I agree....It's inevitable new groups are going to run into problems. However....isn't coming back to the well for more funding before having something tangible to show for the first cash infusion a little presumptuous, at the least?

    41. Adam Roberts on

      I'm excited, I missed the phone kickstarter (which pissed me off) so I'm glad I have this chance to help. Especially excited about cross platform play - big bonus there!

    42. Michael Cohen on

      Man, eff that guy's noise. I think you guys are putting together something really special here. If it takes a little while longe to do it right, I'll wait, and so will a lot of others, I'm sure. Just keep on working towards the goal of making the game the best it can be, and stop letting the haters distract you. The commenter sounds to me like an armchair dev, and if he really has the smarts and balls to do what you guys are doing, then he should get off his butt, stop making passive aggressive donations to awesome Kickstarter projects, and make his own!

    43. Will Buckingham

      @Jason Joyce - As far as I can see looking at the rewards from their last Kickstarter, as long as they send out the physical swag and eventually get you a code for the DLC when the iOS game is launched, they're covering their end of the Kickstarter requirements. You were funding the game's development, not buying a copy, if you want to get technical.

      Now obviously the company is going to want to get the release done, but personally I'd rather see a title get finished properly than to be crapped out because they hit a overly ambitious "deadline". I waited two months for an iPhone case project to be shipped past their "deadline" because parts ended up poor quality at first and the group underestimated the amount of problems that can come from working with a foreign manufacturer for the very first time. It's almost a given that new groups are going to have problems with their very first Kickstarter, but to me, the fact that they've been transparent about their problems and are still working to get things done weighs a lot toward my trust of a group eventually getting things done.

    44. Missing avatar

      Jason on

      Don't let comments like these discourage you guys! But on the flip side, glad you are responding to them. I think it really just is whiny-ness from some people... but yeah, you gotta do what you can to satisfy even these people as they're part of your fan base... Your new trailer shows gameplay for the iOS/Android version so why are people bitching about your deadline? Things take time, good things are worth waiting for, and I will admit that I too think it sucks that it's taking so long, but that's only because I really want to play your game. Despite that though, I know that I'd rather wait for you to polish it than for you to rush it and have it flop and disappoint. And also, I read your article about where all your first Kickstarter money went and I must say that I am shocked you are even still able to make this game... really, a lot of your money went away really quick... people need to be more understanding. I know you've made this one $100k and changed the rewards to be mostly digital stuff so that you can ACTUALLY have a budget this time... if Star Command iOS/Android is what we get out of you when you have barely any money then I am psyched to see what you can do with a REAL BUDGET! I hope this Kickstarter works out for you guys! I've already made my pledge! As April O'Neil would say in TMNT on the NES: "You have my support..." ;)

    45. David on

      I want to give you guys more money now!!!! Make another tier above the $125 level! Fact is you guys are great and I'm alright with waiting patiently!

    46. Matt Benn on

      these 3 guys are working their butts off to make a great game from the ground up. you gotta love how some kid living in his parent's basement is pissed this A) isn't out yet and B) costs money.

    47. Scott Everts on

      I've been in the computer entertainment industry over 20 years and delays are just part of the job. You reinvent the wheel with each project. It's a creative industry and its hard to schedule. We've gotten better at planning over the years but I find when we have hard dates we either have to cut stuff or go out buggier then we want. For a small team that can be bad news when you want your first title to make an impression. Take your time and get it done right.

    48. icecreamjones on

      People are so whiny and paranoid. Happy to get my PC copy. I prefer this blunt talk - I still support the Project Zomboid guys and so do most of their community as well. Their forums are more active than ever and the project presses on, it is only the undesirable people who take off.

    49. Kris on

      i don't see any problem ... team a iOS/Android team b pc/mac ... team b needs funding. case closed and i'm very happy to get this super awesome game on pc !!!

    50. Keith I Duncan on

      Brave post. Thanks for the transparency.