Star Citizen, Chris Roberts' ambitious space-faring game, has smashed its last public stretch goal, hitting more than $51 million in funding so far.
Known for his popular Wing Commander series, Roberts unveiled Star Citizen back in 2012
with a mixed-funding model that would see private investment paired with cash raised through a self-hosted crowd-funding drive and another hosted via Kickstarter. At the time, Roberts had a target figure in mind of up to $12 million - an ambitious goal, but one he felt comfortable would be hit. $2.1 million came in via Kickstarter and a further $2 million in direct funding via the Star Citizen website; in July 2013 Roberts announced that the total had reached a whopping $14 million
When crowd-funded projects exceed their original target, it's common to offer 'stretch goals' to encourage further funds. Offering everything from additional missions and ships to cockpit decorations and professional motion capture for the cutscenes, the stretch goals worked with the fund sitting at more than $35 million in December 2013
- significantly higher than its original $12 million goal.
Now, the campaign has smashed its final stretch goal: the creation of an alien language for the game's three biggest races, the Vanduul, the Xi'An and the Banu. To be developed in partnership with real-world linguists, the language will be fully-formed in a similar manner to Star Trek's Klingon; players will even be able to learn the language themselves in order to understand alien communications, should they so choose.
With $51 million raised so far, the Star Citizen campaign is now officially out of stretch goals. Roberts has yet to announce whether his company has any more ideas for encouraging yet more income for the game.
Chris Roberts has issued a blog post
confirming new stretch goals for the project, the first of which has already been passed. At $51 million, an interactive map of the game's known space was added to the project's plan; at $52 million, all backers up to that stretch goal will receive a personal jet-pack in-game item; at $53 million, Roberts will set up what he calls an Independent Arbitrator’s Guild staffed by real-world individuals to discourage bad sportsmanship in the game.