Star Citizen Backer Gets $2,500 Refund

Steven Bogos

The Taco Man
Jan 17, 2013
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Star Citizen Backer Gets $2,500 Refund

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The California Attorney General ordered Star Citizen developer Cloud Imperium Games to refund the money after it initially refused.

Crowdfunding is pretty hit-and-miss. Sometimes you get in on the ground floor of something magical, and other times people will literally steal your money, or the product evolves into something you don't want anymore. For many Star Citizen [http://www.escapistmagazine.com/tag/view/star%20citizen?os=%20star%20citizen] fans, the latter has become true, especially for backer "Streetroller" who dropped over two grand on the project when it first started, but wanted out following the game's change in scope and lengthy delays. Despite being initially refused a refund from the developer, Streetroller dug deep, getting the California Attorney General, the FTC and the DCBA involved in order to get his money back.

The whole exchange, which went down on the Something Awful Forums [https://imgur.com/IIwd8sZ], details Streetroller's journey to get his $2,560 refund. He first requested a refund from CIG on June 14, stating that Star Citizen "remains unfulfilled and no longer constitutes the product(s) I originally purchased". CIG refused his request, pointing to the following passage in the terms of service:

"For the avoidance of doubt, in consideration of [Roberts Space Industry's] good faith efforts to develop, produce, and deliver the Game with the funds raised, you agree that any Pledge amounts applied against the Pledge Item Cost and the Game Cost shall be non-refundable regardless of whether or not RSI is able to complete and deliver the Game and/or the pledge items."

Streetroller argued that he never agreed to these terms of service, as they have changed from the original terms of service [https://web.archive.org/web/20150221120446/https://robertsspaceindustries.com/tos] that he agreed to when he first made his pledge. The original TOS says that refunds can only be requested 18 months after the game's estimated delivery date. Star Citizen's initial ETA was November 2014, and eighteen months after that would put us at May, 2016.

Streetroller then reached out to the LA district attorney the FTC and LA Department of Consumer and Business Affairs. The DA immediately contacted CIG, which refunded Streetroller $900 on June 23. But, he wasn't satisfied with that: he wanted all his money back. After a few back-and-forths between these regulatory associations and CIG, he was able to get the vast majority of his refund.

Additionally, The DCBA also told Streetroller they urged others to come forward and file a complaint against CIG regarding refund policy.

So, if you want a Star Citizen refund, get in touch with your local DCBA!

Source: PC Games N [http://www.pcgamesn.com/star-citizen/star-citizen-refunds-ftc]

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Kotoriii

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What's the ETA for the game release nowadays? 2019, 2020? Will HL3 be released before it? Doesn't sound like the craziest thought.
 

SKBPinkie

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That guy was probably not the smartest dude to put so much money into the game.

That being said, nothing about this game looks interesting or something that will live up to the hype. I'm bored of hearing about this thing. And just like Half life 3, I don't want to hear anything about it until it's released.
 

008Zulu_v1legacy

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This is funny to me for all the reasons.

I have often said this whole game is a scam. People have attacked me over this statement with much vitriol. I keep saying that the game isn't even released yet, and they are already selling DLC for it. That's what we call a scam.
 

Redlin5_v1legacy

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Aug 5, 2009
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But I don't want a refund... <.<

[sub][sub]I'm not a zealot but I still have faith in the game. I have a vast reserve of patience too. I just don't want to see another civil war in here like the last time...[/sub][/sub]
 

Saulkar

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Good thing I only dropped a little over a hundred bucks on this. It may become a finished game but I cannot feel it coming around in any reasonable time-frame. All the same, I am not one of those that sadistically get hard at the idea of this thing crashing and burning, I genuinely want it to finish and am well aware of how the funding system works (get more money to unlock more features to be developed by added staff) but there is this pessimism that I cannot shake. Maybe it is just everyone else's rubbing off onto me but hey. Some are going to pat me on the back for seeing the light while others are going to condemn for not having absolute faith in the project. These threads/news articles tend to go that way.
 

90sgamer

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I am happy with this outcome.
1. It's creating an extra-legal precedent that should hopefully deter future kickstarters from abusing the process of law in the same manner RSI is abusing the process of law. It's looking as if it may create a legal precedent as well.
2. RSI is abusing the process of law in order to obtain an unfair advantage over consumers who, in good faith, backed RSI's project. It's nice to see it get slapped for its behavior.
3. RSI is victim of its own hubris. Its position regarding the kickstarter agreement is contrary to public policy concerning the balance of contracts. A first year law student could tell you that their interpretation of the kickstarter agreement would not likely be persuasive in court.
 

Neurotic Void Melody

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"Star citizen fans."

How in the blazes can people be fans for something that is not much more than a name? Fuck...humans frustrate me so bloody much with their incessant stupidity! Or maybe I am just too poor to understand wasting money on future masturbatory promises. Whatever makes them feel better.
 

IamLEAM1983

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Aug 22, 2011
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I'll just sit over there, being glad that my preload counter for No Man's Sky on the PS4 has been updated...

As much as I take to Kickstarter projects with a ton of good faith and am willing to understand that development is an organic process that *can* and does go sideways - this has gone on for quite some time. I keep getting the sense that funds were misappropriated by greedy, inexperienced and arrogant individuals who are too prideful to realize their efforts were poorly directed.

Between this and Flagship Studios, I think there's an important lesson to keep in mind. If your studio's been insanely successful at generating funds, DO NOT expand the project's scale. DO NOT deviate from the initial roadmap. Use those funds to do the best of what the initial roadmap required. Once you have a feature-complete project that's the best of what your funds allowed you to make, *then* consider branching out.

Oh - and ixnay on the lavish office parties, personal privileges and bespoke studio design. Live smart. Live humble. Act as though you were living on peanut shells and pour *everything* into the development cycle. Only miracle stories like Mojang get enough money to consider buying themselves a designer-assembled studio space even *before* being bought out by a corporation or publisher.
 

Adam Jensen_v1legacy

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Sep 8, 2011
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I never understood the hype behind it. But I also don't understand how anyone thought that a game this ambitious wouldn't take extremely long to make.
 

Dornedas

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Adam Jensen said:
I never understood the hype behind it. But I also don't understand how anyone thought that a game this ambitious wouldn't take extremely long to make.
Well I gave them money back when they barely had their 2 million and weren't all: UUUH FPS UUUH Multi-crew-ships.

UUUH Give us more money to refill our coke buckets.
 

Quellist

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I've a feeling someone just pulled the first brick out of the Dam. This could get real ugly real quick
 

Mangod

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So, Star Citizen's defense for not giving Streetroller his money back was essentially:



Someone who's got more knowledge about law than me; isn't it illegal to try and hold Streetroller to a TOS that he never signed?
 

Dalisclock

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Quellist said:
If a feeling someone just pulled the first brick out of the Dam. This could get real ugly real quick
It was gonna get ugly regardless. I think this just started the process earlier then expected. If not now, when the game dropped and all but the most die-hard fans realized that the amount of time and money expended and the product they got didn't seem to match up much.

The die hards will, however, continue to insist that SC is the most perfect game ever and any flaws were meant to be there from the beginning.
 

Dalisclock

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Xsjadoblayde said:
"Star citizen fans."

How in the blazes can people be fans for something that is not much more than a name? Fuck...humans frustrate me so bloody much with their incessant stupidity! Or maybe I am just too poor to understand wasting money on future masturbatory promises. Whatever makes them feel better.
Some people really like unicorn burgers and figure the more money they throw at a promised one, the more likely they are to get it.
 

fix-the-spade

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Mangod said:
Someone who's got more knowledge about law than me; isn't it illegal to try and hold Streetroller to a TOS that he never signed?
Videogame TOS have pretty much no legal standing to begin with. Even if you agree to it here in Europe your consumer rights override the TOS should the two conflict and in the US many states have similar laws. It's what forced Valve to institute the Steam refunds policy, the European Court was gearing up to prosecute them.

Even the ones that don't all agree that you can only be held to terms you agreed to at the time you signed up, which is why RSI lost this. Whether it's it's illegal in the sense of it being prosecutable I don't know, but it's certainly not enforceable on RSI's part, unless they're trying to get sued at this point.
 

Hawki

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Mangod said:
So, Star Citizen's defense for not giving Streetroller his money back was essentially:



Someone who's got more knowledge about law than me; isn't it illegal to try and hold Streetroller to a TOS that he never signed?
But the deal's getting worse all the time. :(
 

Quellist

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Dalisclock said:
Quellist said:
If a feeling someone just pulled the first brick out of the Dam. This could get real ugly real quick
It was gonna get ugly regardless. I think this just started the process earlier then expected. If not now, when the game dropped and all but the most die-hard fans realized that the amount of time and money expended and the product they got didn't seem to match up much.

The die hards will, however, continue to insist that SC is the most perfect game ever and any flaws were meant to be there from the beginning.
Well some people insist the Earth is flat...