Hellion launches out of early access unfinished and ends development

No, it's not finished, and yes, they're still charging for it

    
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If you point your brain back at 2017, you’ll recall that an ambitious survival sandbox called Hellion braved the Steam early access waters. Zero Gravity Games’ sci-fi thriller had caught our eye with its creepy sci-fi setting and hardcore mechanics. But sadly, the game is not to be, at least not to the original vision: The studio announced that it can no longer afford to develop the game.

“Unfortunately, the cruel reality is – not enough players were brought into our world of Hellion to make it commercially viable. After the sloppy start of the game, predominately in terms of bugs and issues, we gave our best to fix the game and add new content via numerous patches and updates. Hellion grew, got better, but is still far from the original idea of what Hellion was meant to be. Factions, additional ships, trade posts, all of this was simply put aside since our team was constantly fighting technical issues, some of which were simply impossible to be solved for good. That struggle is coming to an end. At this point, without an influx of new players, the game doesn’t pay for its development.”

It looks as though the game has now launched from early access as it is, “without achieving goals” set for it by its devs, with a price-cut to $15 since it’s “not fully finished.” That fee will pay for the servers to stay up, though the game won’t see patches or fixes from here on out, and “control over the official servers will be handed to Hellion’s Discord moderators.”

While it seems some players are sympathetic, others are currently asking for refunds and calling it a scam, and of course Steam reviews have since tanked to “mostly negative” as angry players warn everyone else away from picking up the title now that it’s “launched” and the only formal notice that this newly launched title comes as-is is buried in Steam’s updates, not on the Steam page itself.

Source: Steam. With thanks to Kinya.
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MurderHobo
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MurderHobo

Hellion was not a scam. It just wasn’t fit for mass market consumption and didn’t hook enough people to build a viable base of players.

I played it. The work was solid, and in some ways superior to what Star Citizen did.

I liked the Kerbal-esque orbital mechanics, but it served as too great a barrier for me to have pulled in my friends. Even I gave up after the fifth or six EVA to dock or repair a module.

There is real talent at that studio. I hope to see more from them. Their game didn’t stick with me, but their intro track will always stick in my head:

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Sleepy

Gotta love the blameless phrase: “some of which were simply impossible to be solved for good”

It’s “we couldn’t fix it”.

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Alberto

The game was too hard core for most people, had some great ideas and mechanics but was not an easy game to get into and had little replay value so yeah sales of the game w STEAM taking 30% wasn’t enough for them to continue Dev and they shut down..like most Early Access games..Buyer Beware. And the on bright side maybe the community can finish it up since they hadn’t it over to the Mods.

MrEllis
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MrEllis

“Making games is way harder than we thought.”

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Sasha Alex

Was this the game that you had to constantly go out and repair every minor thing that broke in your ship?

MurderHobo
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MurderHobo

Yes. Ships and stations were built out of docked modules. Modules had systems that required widgets that had to be replaced as they wore out or suffered damage. Someone had to learn the systems and associated access panels, stock and sort repair widgets and remember how to find them. It’s cool in concept, but the reality was you needed someone to own the role of mechanic.

Same with pilot. The mechanics were like KSP, so you had to think in prograde/retrograde and orbit matching, not WWII pilots in space. Anything outside of CQ required scanning and warp calculations…

It was just too much, without enough dopamine reward to really draw people in and make them learn the skills.

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EmberStar

If it’s the game I’m thinking of, it was also online only, with no singleplayer offline mode. That’s enough for me to avoid it. Especially in one with such a high potential for a griefer to board your station and (oh, I don’t know) steal all the components or open all the airlocks or undock all the modules at once or something.

I might be able to play a game for a couple of hours, maybe once or twice a week. My “play for half an hour per day” time is often eaten up by just claiming the daily login rewards or event completion in something like Star Trek Online. So I don’t really look forward to logging into a game like this and learning that my cryo pod was launched into the sun by “Space Pirate LuLz” half an hour after I logged off three days ago.

MilitiaMasterV
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MilitiaMasterV

Yeah, that’s one reason I didn’t give it a chance. The PvP aspect. I love games that are sci fi/space based like this, but throw in some griefer and there is no way I’d want to be playing just to have it all disappear when offline. Is everyone like that? No. But that one player who is makes games like this not fun to be on.