June 19th, 2017

Derek Smart issues legal ‘demand letter’ to Star Citizen devs

Derek Smart issues legal ‘demand letter’ to Star Citizen devs

The possibility of some kind of legal action between Derek Smart and Cloud Imperium edged a little closer today, with the issuing of a ‘demand letter’ to the Star Citizen developers.

For those who don’t know, demand letters tend to be a formal notice of alleged grievances (and demand for restitution) written by a lawyer on behalf of an aggrieved party. It doesn’t constitute legal action in itself, but tends to threaten as such if the enclosed demands are not met by a listed date.

This is the case with Derek Smart’s letter (which can be read in full here), in which he gives “Mr Roberts, et al” 30 days to turn over a “complete forensic accounting” of the Star Citizen finances (paid for by Smart), a completion date for Star Citizen (now that November 2014 has passed), and refunds for all those who wish to request them.

In an accompanying and traditionally verbose missive, Smart adds that “[Cloud Imperium’s] response – if any – will determine where we go from here” and suggests that a class-action lawsuit will “immediately” be filed if the answers are not satisfactory.

Earlier portions of the blog post extensively reiterate concerns that Star Citizen, in Mr. Smart’s view, is a project that cannot reach completion, and recap the circumstances of his $250 USD pledge being refunded (without request) by Cloud Imperium.

His piece concludes with advice for those who are wishing to seek refunds, and instructions on how to stay informed on joining any class-action lawsuits which may arise after the 30 day deadline is up.

Last week, PC Invasion published a compiled timeline of Star Citizen development progress (from 2012 to the present day), which you can peruse right here.

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  • Comments: 9
    • http://steamcommunity.com/id/OreoGamingGeek/ OreoGamingGeek

      *gets out popcorn to watch Derek Smart humiliate himself in a fit of envious rage. Again.*

      • korval

        There’s a scene from the Tom Cruise film Minority Report where a cop named Danny Witwer, after seeing all the evidence on the bed, remarks, “I worked homicide before federal. This is what we call an orgy of evidence.”

        I won’t get into the specifics but I will say Derek has an “orgy of evidence.” And despite CIG’s attempts to “remove” it online Derek has already stored it all as evidence for future use. The truth is coming. Believe it.

        • http://steamcommunity.com/id/OreoGamingGeek/ OreoGamingGeek

          >I won’t get into specifics
          Then you don’t have any. Saying a bunch of vague scare words and then saying “The truth is coming out” is like those tinfoilers that keep believing that the ice caps are gonna melt “any day now!” like they have for the past two decades, whereas over in reality, real climatologists are predicting a possible global mini ice age by 2030-2040.

          Stardock is being incredibly ambitious with this project, but I think their biggest hurdle isn’t going to be “can they pull this off” it’s going to be “we’re impatient so we want everything NOW”. In the era of instant gratification, a lengthy development process like this is 1) almost unheard of, and 2) ill-received when it does come out. It was the same thing with Planetary Annihilation, only people (read, average gamers) were pissed off that Uber was charging so much for an early access game. Somehow they missed the big “ALPHA” declaration and the fact that this was getting gamers in on the literal ground floor of development. It’s the same thing here. Personally, I think Derek Smart’s jealous. Because this game is literally everything he wanted Universal Combat to be, only this one’s actually going to work.

          • korval

            Whatever. The evidence will be presented in a court of law not here online. Besides it’s Derek’s evidence, not mine. I don’t have the right to share it.

            • http://steamcommunity.com/id/OreoGamingGeek/ OreoGamingGeek

              Still waiting to hear that evidence you’re so sure of. You like to throw around the term “f-ing liar” a lot when referring to RSi. It’s interesting that you’re rock-sure in your position–except when you get called out on it. Then you backpedal and go “W-w-well it’s not my evidence to reveal anyway.”

              Also, you can look for my e-mail among the backers of SC. It’s not there, just so we’re clear. I’ve played (and enjoyed) UC, and am waiting eagerly for SC. I don’t have a dog in this fight one way or the other. But none of that changes the fact that Derek Smart is an irredeemable asshole.

              • korval

                You’ll find out soon.

    • Teddy

      Derek Smart is starting to sound like someone who got kicked out of a party for moaning it was crap, then notices everyone else is still in said party and wants to ruin it for everyone or get let back in.

      • Red Avatar

        I think it’s even more than that – Derek got a lot of crap in the past for making his games too big in scope ending up with a buggy mess that has many broken features. Star Citizen must really sting for him, seeing a competitor of his being given millions upon millions for an idea which is even bigger in scope than his games ever dared go for. I think part of him is going “No way this game will achieve its goals! If I can get a ton of abuse for my games, they should get it too”.

        You could be cynical and say that Derek knows when a dev tries to overreach and won’t let them get away with it and perhaps that’s pretty close to the truth. Star Citizen isn’t anywhere close to a release and I myself doubt it will end up being what they claim it will be. Stuff will get cut or will be there in a bare-bones state or will be badly implemented – but to balance such a huge game is hard as nails for even the best dev. Cloud Imperium is just being arrogant here … i’d rather they stick to a very solid game instead of trying to make this amazingly complex entity that falls apart under its own weight …

    • Raptor Jesus

      As someone who get suckered by Chris Roberts I want to say thank you to Derek Smart.