Facepalm: Who could have imagined that when its Kickstarter campaign was announced back in 2012, there’d still be no sign of a finished Star Citizen game as we draw close to 2021? But maybe Squadron 41, the single-player element of the MMO space sim, will be here soon? According to developer Cloud Imperium Games (CIG), no, it won't.
The fact we’re closing in on a decade-long development time for Star Citizen has seen numerous backers demand their pledges back—sometimes requiring legal means.
Back in 2018, a new trailer for Squadron 42 looked very enticing. It features a Hollywood cast including Henry Cavill, Gillian Anderson, Mark Hamill, Gary Oldman, Mark Strong, and John Rhys Davies. Two years later, and it appears we’re not going to be playing the game anytime soon.
“We still have a ways to go before we are in beta, but everyone on Squadron 42 is working very hard to deliver something great,” said studio boss Chris Roberts in an AMA.
The Wing Commander series creator also said devs had not done the best job in keeping fans updated with Squadron 42’s progress. Back in July, following fan and backer complaints that the company had given no new information since March, CIG said it was working on a new roadmap for the game.
“We haven’t been happy with how effectively we’ve been showing progress on Squadron 42, as we felt the previous format didn’t do a good job of all in communicating just how much work is going on. Squadron 42 is a tricky project to communicate on as we really don’t want to give the experience and story away which can make updating on certain content or features challenging.”
Squadron 42 was initially supposed to arrive in 2016 before being delayed. At the time, a 2017 target was suggested, but it still has no official launch date or even an estimate. As with the main Star Citizen game, the seemingly never-ending development cycle is frustrating many people, but Roberts insists it will only be released when the game is ready and he’s happy with the final product.
“Squadron 42 will be done when it is done and will not be released just to make a date but instead once all the tech and content is finished, polished and it plays great. I am not willing to compromise making a game I believe in with all my heart and soul.”
“Even though everyone (including me) wants Squadron 42 sooner than later, it would be doing a huge disservice to everyone working really hard on the project, and all of you that are looking forward to it to deliver something that isn’t great.”
Don’t hold your breath for a beta, either. “We still have a ways to go before we are in beta, but everyone on Squadron 42 is working very hard to deliver something great,” Roberts said. Let’s hope we’re not waiting another eight years.