The upcoming game Star Citizen is being financed through crowdfunding, with a twist: The primary fundraising for the game occurs through its own website, and it has been ongoing since 2012. With over $94 million raised, the science-fiction game holds a Guinness World Record as the "Most-Funded Crowdfunding Project Anywhere."
The average Star Citizen supporter spends around $96 on the game, getting special ships, in-game credits and other perks in return for pledges at various support levels. One Star Citizen fan named Chris (and known as Ozy311 in the Star Citizen community) has gone a bit beyond that, spending over $30,000 on the game so far, and fully expects to spend more.
In an interview with PC Gamer, Chris explained that he has not only purchased everything offered in the game, but he actually has bought multiples of the ships. Starting with small purchases early in the game's development, he eventually realized that he truly shared the developer's dream and wanted to help make it a reality. Explaining why he continues to pledge, Chris states, "I’ve helped create a project that I think is going to be game changing for the next decade... I’m OK with that." He also pointed out all of the funds he has spent on the game were earned from side jobs he took specifically for that purpose.
Given the game has raised so much development capital, its scope has come quite a way since Chris started contributing. Not only has the crowdfunding campaign covered the cost of state-of-the-art motion capture equipment, but it has also brought on several celebrity actors to voice characters in the add-on campaign, Squadron 42. The popularity of the game among backers has also funded a number of unique game features to make the game universe more complex and immersive, such as unique languages for the three main races in the game, which are being developed by professional linguists.
Chris isn't the only one who's contributed heavily to Star Citizen, either. Back in March, Wired covered Star Citizen and told the story of a backer known as Wulf Knight who had, at that point, contributed $22,501 to the game's development. There are surely other big spenders among the backers as well, right alongside those who pledged $20 to get one of the cheapest ships the game offers.
Not everyone loves Star Citizen, of course. Some believe that the entire campaign is an elaborate scam, and that the majority of the money is just going into the developer's pocket. Others doubt the game will ever see a final-version release despite the amount of money being channeled into development. Backers like Chris believe in the game, however, and for them that's good enough.
Star Citizen does not currently have a full game release date, and is currently working on the release of preview version Alpha 2.0.
Source: PC Gamer