Roberts vows Star Citizen "will NEVER be dumbed down for a lesser platform"
No current-gen version, but PS4 and Xbox One possible.
Chris Roberts has addressed concern that PC space combat and trading game Star Citizen will be "dumbed down" for release on console.
Backers of the game, which holds the world record for the most amount raised by a crowd-funded project, noticed a PlayStation 4 development kit in a picture of chief technical officer Jason Spangler's desk, and reacted badly.
Now, Roberts has taken to the Roberts Space Industries forum in a bid to reassure those worried about the impact jumping ship might have had on the PC version.
"Star Citizen IS a PC game," he wrote in an impassioned blog post titled Star Citizen, PC, PS4 and Consoles.
"It will NEVER be dumbed down for a lesser platform. We will NOT limit the input options or supported peripherals to the lowest common denominator. We will NOT pass on features and technology just because they will only run on some hardware configurations.
"I just upgraded my office rig to a pair of Titans running in SLI, driving a 4K monitor and a 1440P one (thanks NVidia for the goodies!). We're about ready to build the ultimate AMD rig with FOUR R9 290Xs and AMD's eight core CPU driving a set of 4K monitors in Eyefinity (Thanks AMD!)
"You think that's a good approximation for console, even a next gen one like PS4 or Xbox One?"
Roberts, who stressed the importance of the PC when he unveiled Star Citizen last year, said he loved the platform because of its open nature - and the fact that it is always moving forward with new powerful components.
"The PC platform is great because it isn't static," he said. "It doesn't have rules or some controlling entity that decides what will and won't be in the eco system. If a cool new disruptive technology like the Oculus Rift comes along it can have a chance to gain traction and become the next big thing.
"Because of this Star Citizen will always be primarily a PC game and will embrace the best and newest tech."
Roberts' use of the phrase "Star Citizen will always be primarily a PC game" was quickly picked up by backers as a suggestion that, yes, the game will eventually make it to console.
He ruled out PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions, but left the door open for potential PlayStation 4 and Xbox One versions.
"As far as consoles go Star Citizen will never be on the PS3 or Xbox 360," he said.
"As for the next gen consoles, PS4 and Xbox One, we have NO CURRENT PLANS, but my stance remains open and is consistent with the many interviews I've given.
"IF the platform holders (Sony & Microsoft) allow us to update the code and data without restrictions and odious time consuming QC procedures, IF they allow our community to openly interact with each other across platforms then I would CONSIDER supporting them.
"IF the platform holders (Sony & Microsoft) allow us to update the code and data without restrictions and odious time consuming QC procedures, IF they allow our community to openly interact with each other across platforms then I would CONSIDER supporting them."Star Citizen developer Chris Roberts
"Well because then they are essentially inexpensive small form factor PCs with a custom operating system focused on gaming and who wouldn't want a bigger community of Star Citizens? If Sony or Microsoft are willing to let their platform be open, then I see no real difference between them or Valve's Steambox, a Mac or a PC running Linux, all of which are platforms that I don't think this community would mind supporting as they are all viewed as 'PCs'. In fact most Macs are probably much worse gaming machines than a next gen console (as Apple is the antithesis of what I love about PCs)."
He continued: "But this is a big IF as it's asking a lot. To their credit Sony seems to be the most eager to embrace indie games and the idea of openness, and they chased us down to give us some dev kits to play with but we've been very clear on what it would take to get Star Citizen onto PS4.
"And even then it would only be contemplated as a port from the PC, not the other way around plus we would require a financial commitment by Sony to make it happen. If some of the coolest features or peripherals don't make it because the PS4 can't handle it we would never gimp the PC version.
"This is no different than the issues you face in PC development - we could be like Blizzard or Riot and focus on a game that works on the widest array of PC hardware - but that's not the spirit of Star Citizen. We are shooting for the stars both virtually and technology wise. For me this game is about pushing boundaries on all levels and is something that I hope is still breathing strong 10 years from now. Instead of Crysis benchmarks when they test a new GPU I want to see Star Citizen!"
Roberts insisted there is no chance of him selling out to a console manufacturer in order to secure funding because of the huge amount Star Citizen has already raised through crowd funding.
"You've funded a AAA PC game that will compete with the biggest and best. By the time the game is officially 'done', I'm pretty sure that the final funding will be larger than most AAA console games outside the very biggest like GTA or CoD - and our money goes much further as we don't have any corporate overhead or fancy marketing budgets," he said.
"You have all proven there is at least as much demand for a high end PC game as most console games.
"So fear not! The PC is the platform of Star Citizen. Anything else, if it happens at all, will just be after the fact."