NOTE: No images, links, or quasi-links to the leaked material are available here and ANY comments containing any material will be removed, regardless of content.
In the world of Star Citizen there isn't a week without some controversy, which is the norm when people have donated as much money as they have to the development. Remember, the money they put into the game is NOT an investment, but a donation, for the game to be developed. This is a clear distinction required to understand the delicate social ecosystem the game has. We aren't here today to talk about that, but the leak of the 48 gigabytes of assets from the game.
In the leaked file it contains a plethora of ship designs, including the Bengal, along with ships players have never seen before. Some speculate these will be ships that will be added to the game at a later time - betraying players trust in CIG that they're not going to release more and more ships without telling fans first, who have already been burned countless times purchasing various ships only to have alternative versions come out or better ships that they would much rather have.
The other side of the argument is that Squadron 42 is supposed to contain a plethora of enemy ships that aren't playable - they're just enemies. However, one of the unique things about Freelancer was that most ships in the game were purchasable outside of battleships. You could fly almost anything that was represented in the game and as donors for Star Citizen are well aware - one of the biggest difficulties CIG has is creating the ships, which is why they need so much money since the assets and art required is insane.
It would be a waste for them not to allow players the chance to pilot these ships. Yes, you have to build the cockpit for each, but that's less involved than the ship mechanics. So, I would say for sure, that CIG is sitting on more and more ships that it'll sell and this provides proof - however, the other side of the coin could very well be correct and S42 is going to have these ships exclusively and that's all that is going to have these ships. Personally I see that as a waste and would be content if CIG made the others ship playable, either post funding or pre (as long as they say they will come out).
Now, the cool thing is that the Bengal looks fantastic, even if it's an older version of it (according to the community) and a lot of these ships look fantastic and makes me even a little bit excited to play, however, again to note, no details from CIG about these ships.
On to the not cool thing. There is a lot of fallout from this and people are in different camps to the entire ordeal. Some are begging for the original "hackers" to be put to jail and for CIG to make an example out of them in the harshest way possible, but the way these assets were obtained was from a screenshot from Disco Lando with a URL that someone guessed the rest of it. Reading some forum posts is difficult at the amount of anger being expressed over this leak, up to various posters begging for people speaking positively of the event to be banned.
Others are upset that the game is this far into development and no playable development build is out (the game was promised to be allowed to be played at every phase of development). They are also upset that this leak occurred which would dissuade individuals from donating since this much content has already been finished, it's doubtful they need much more to go, thus donations may dry up (a lot of players have a significant financial investment in their donations and need Star Citizen to release as a popular game for these ships to pan out - especially Javelins).
Finally, the rest of the community is happy for the leak and their chance to see a lot of the ships that haven't been announced (because, supposedly, SQ42 details are under lock and key even though spoilers have already been made in previous interviews).
This does however showcase how expectations are right now and the bitter barrier between those who are loyal cultists of Chris Roberts and the cynical burned backers who donated much earlier for an entirely different project and are now staring at something way beyond the original scope. On one side of the coin, those who are loyal to CIG exclaim that the earlier donors should be rejoiced that the efforts of later donors have expanded the game they originally donated to far beyond the scope of what it was originally to be, while the side of the coin is players who thought they'd have a playable game by now (Arena Commander is playable, but it's nowhere representative of what the game is to be - it's supposed to be a mini-game playable within your hanger).
It's hard when you have over $83 million given to you by over 100,000 donors to manage expectations, especially as that money came in at different development points. Remember, all funds are donations for the game, not a purchase, as there will not be a real money ship store when the game goes live and all ships being purchased now are supposed to be available in-game with credits (although we could most likely assume there will be a process to purchase credits with real money, either in the white market or the gray market).
Nevertheless, CIG is working on something and evidence is now out that there is a game. Questions and concerns abound, but the leak is helpful in one respect: there is a lot of content going into Star Citizen, that's for sure. For the rest of it? Personally, the community's vitriol from this has gotten out of hand and the nastiest appearing on their forums, reddit, and other games sites is out of control. I think that, leak or no leak, everyone should attempt to be as nice as they can.
As a final note, no I don't want a javelin. I do not have enough friends to pilot the thing and I'm not backing Star Citizen - I'll gladly wait until there is something playable so that my feelings aren't hurt when I pay for something that I can't yet play.
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