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Areal Kickstarter funding suspended

#11KillerTrufflePosted 7/22/2014 4:21:54 PM
Lemur_H posted...
Jprime666 posted...
What is this and why is there a controversy?


A team that has no rights to the STALKER franchise has been claiming they're building a spiritual successor to the series.

However, they only have concept art. They've never showed any gameplay and have attempted to pass off Unity as their proprietary engine. They wanted $50,000 to build a multiplatform game, including a Wii U release.


Should also clarify that even the concept art they do have is not even from the game they're trying to kickstart - it's early concept art from STALKER, which they're using without permission (as though there's anyone who can raise legitimate claim to it any more). The entire project screams scam.
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"How do I get rid of a Trojan Horse?" -Sailor_Kakashi
"Leave it outside the gates of Troy overnight." -Davel23
#12SleepComaPosted 7/22/2014 4:35:50 PM
Lmao.

They even claimed that Vladimir Putin sent them a letter, personally.


https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1577656602/areal/posts/919596
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#13KillerTrufflePosted 7/22/2014 4:58:32 PM(edited)
http://i.imgur.com/VPMgwhh.jpg

lulz

It takes a minute for the full impact of that whole image to sink in. It's bigger than you'd think.

Guy posts image on their Facebook page that was obviously a crappy Photoshop job of a picture stolen from a Warhammer site.

West Games responds by claiming people are sinking to a new low by creating false Facebook pages for their company and loading it with cheap pics like that to make them look bad.

The *slight* glitch in their accusation is the fact that their own bloody Kickstarter page links directly to the very Facebook page they claim is fake - as the official link. Note that the mouse cursor was over the Facebook direct link, and the context link in the bottom left confirming the Facebook account it links to.

So not only did they apparently steal a Warhammer photo and run a sloppy Photoshop job on it to claim it as "concept art," once they got caught doing it, they're like "dudes, why are you making fake Facebook pages for us? Our real page is this *other* one, not the one our Kickstarter page links to."
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"How do I get rid of a Trojan Horse?" -Sailor_Kakashi
"Leave it outside the gates of Troy overnight." -Davel23
#14KillerTrufflePosted 7/22/2014 5:09:57 PM
Latest post from their "new" Facebook page:

We are restarting funding directly via our website, so please check it out and support us there: http://areal.west-games.com/



Official Statement:

Our Kickstarter was suspended without any warning. As per Kickstarter's policy, we cannot contact them to find out why. Areal is the spiritual successor to STALKER, in terms of our vision for it and in terms of the team that we have (which includes Alexey Sytyanov, the lead game designer and screenwriter for STALKER). You can find out more about us and our team on our website: http://areal.west-games.com/


From the very beginning, we showed what we have accomplished, and showed the atmosphere for what we want to accomplish (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xTMtpViPhhc&list=UU7j5-kx3Mk4rtG6q_SfsOYQ).

The fact is that there are a lot of companies that make their livelihood on STALKER, so when we showed up on the scene, they saw us as a threat and did everything that they could to stop us.

People also need to take into account that Ukrainians and Russians are in an information war right now, and as a Ukrainian developer, we were subject to constant hostility from Russian Kickstarter accounts (we even got death threats). There are over 16,000 comments on our Kickstarter, which is unprecedented for the amount of supporters that we have, and a lot of our comments are hate filled. Some sites, in light of this, chose to report based on sources from direct competitors or from the myriad of comments based on lies. Others chose a neutral ground, because of the confusing situation around us, and still others wrote positively about us. All in all, more than a 1,000 news results come up when you type in "Areal Kickstarter" on Google.

After vice news wrote an article about us, people started contributing every minute, but Kickstarter was afraid of the controversy surrounding our project, so they suspended funding. We set our base goal at 50K; even with 2 days left, we raised more than 64 thousand dollars, and our competitors were doing everything that they could to stop that. Kickstarter is a business, and that was their decision. We were not warned, we do not have a say in the matter, we cannot notify our backers, we cannot message our backers, and we can't post updates anymore. That is how Kickstarter chose to act.

We are the creators of STALKER, and we know that we can make Areal even better than that series, because of advances in technology, gameplay mechanics, and story. We need your support to make that happen, so we have opened up a website wherein we will continue to raise funds. We ask all supporters of Areal who read this, to please head over to our site and contribute there. PayPal is used for safe checkout, but you do not need a PayPal account to donate. Thank you for your understanding.


Now they're encouraging people to go and directly funnel money to them as donations with *NO* guarantee of any return - no filter like Kickstarter.

I also like how they first say "we can't even ask Kickstarter why they suspended us," and a couple paragraphs later claim "they suspended us because they're afraid of our controversy."

Man... I do feel for anyone gullible enough to follow them and directly donate at this point, but at some point, you just have to say "buyer beware" and let them make their decisions.
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"How do I get rid of a Trojan Horse?" -Sailor_Kakashi
"Leave it outside the gates of Troy overnight." -Davel23
#15SpazH3dPosted 7/23/2014 4:51:22 AM
Why are they not replying to the 2 most important questions? Why is the funding so low, if they want to make a game better than the STALKER series, and why the heck are they using photos and videos from STALKER? Just come up front and answer our questions, gotdam. How hard can it be.
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- My vision is augmented
#16Golden_GonadsPosted 7/23/2014 5:36:07 AM
Didn't one of the Lead Developers of the STALKER series come forward and say he had no idea who any of these people are, despite their claiming they were senior staff on the games?
#17SinisterSlayPosted 7/23/2014 5:42:44 AM
Lemur_H posted...
Apparently it was funding to get a simple demo off the ground to attract real investors.

However, they were not upfront about this. True or false, it looks bad.

And is.



Ha.

http://imgur.com/a/KV5gW


Explain plz
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#18Lemur_HPosted 7/23/2014 7:12:15 AM
You don't build a multiplatform game on Unity and claim it is your own proprietary engine in your Kickstarter pitch video.
#19coolpal23Posted 7/23/2014 7:16:38 AM
Golden_Gonads posted...
Didn't one of the Lead Developers of the STALKER series come forward and say he had no idea who any of these people are, despite their claiming they were senior staff on the games?


Source NOW
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http://i.imgur.com/NVnxB97.png http://i.imgur.com/b2lVVgT.png http://i.imgur.com/NVnxB97.png http://i.imgur.com/b2lVVgT.png
#20KillerTrufflePosted 7/23/2014 9:06:51 AM
SpazH3d posted...
Why are they not replying to the 2 most important questions? Why is the funding so low, if they want to make a game better than the STALKER series, and why the heck are they using photos and videos from STALKER? Just come up front and answer our questions, gotdam. How hard can it be.


They did answer about funding - their answer is "$50k is all we need to finish up - we've paid for the rest of everything out of our own pockets."

They haven't really addressed questions about why all of their concept stuff is nothing but old STALKER concept art, or why their "whole new engine" is nothing more than Unity, etc.

And they haven't directly addressed what I see as a key budgetary question - do they truly have enough money to fulfill the promised tier rewards of "copy of the game on platform of your choice, considering the console platform discs all have minimum order amounts, and when that total alone is well beyond the Kickstarter goal?

Lemur_H posted...
You don't build a multiplatform game on Unity and claim it is your own proprietary engine in your Kickstarter pitch video.


I don't think he said he had no idea who they were, but I do recall him saying something along the lines of those people only marginally being involved with early work on STALKER and were definitely not major contributors to the game or "core developers" as they claimed.
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"How do I get rid of a Trojan Horse?" -Sailor_Kakashi
"Leave it outside the gates of Troy overnight." -Davel23