Chronicles of Elyria is releasing Kingdoms of Elyria as a standalone product for backers

    
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In early 2020, Chronicles of Elyria stunned MMO gamers by announcing it was out of money, had laid off the devs, had closed Soulbound Studio, and had ended development on the game. And though CEO Jeromy Walsh later retracted much of that and said the game was still in production with volunteer staff, the gamers who’d backed it for $14M+ in crowdfunds pressed onward with legal action. By the end of 2020, Walsh began releasing new videos to reconfirm ongoing production: The December video discussed changes to scope and communication, while the the January edition focused on timelines and development phases.

That brings us to the February video, which just launched and homes in on the game’s 2020 outlook and more specifically the strategy-centric Kingdoms of Elyria gameplay, which is “moving from a test-only platform to a fully-fledged stand-alone product.” Existing backers will receive access for free, and it will launch in four stages, the first of which arrives late in 2021 and will be limited to the colony sim and settlement management game where “the focus will be on keeping your citizens alive and happy as you grow from a hamlet to a large capital-sized settlement.” More deep-dives into Kingdoms are promised for the future monthly videos.

“I can’t stress this enough – development of Kingdoms of Elyria doesn’t prevent development on CoE,” Walsh says. “Quite the opposite: All the engineering work and design decisions feed directly into CoE’s future development and is a necessary step in bringing both sides of the game together. The systems we are creating in Kingdoms will be integrated with Chronicles later down the line, meaning this release provides an opportunity to experience part of Chronicles of Elyria now.”

As we’ve previously noted, the class-action lawsuit against both the studio and payment processor Xsolla continues for now; the plaintiffs have stated they believe their lawsuit will “likely get [them] access to a lot more behind the scenes information about the true status of the game.”

The new video is below.

Source: YouTube, press release
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Kylus Ravencourt

Isn’t this the same things 38 Studios did with Kingdom of Amalar ‽

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rk70534

Considering how second games from developers of delayed MMOs are even usually taken, announcing a second game in these circumstances – although clearly an attempt to appease backers and avoid law-suits – is like throwing a live hand-grenade into a gasoline station.

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Dro Gul

$14+ million crowdfunded? Umm, I think you are mixing up games.

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Harbinger_Kyleran

Agreed, was more like $7M …

MilitiaMasterV
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MilitiaMasterV

Totally not an attempt to produce a product so a judge will be like ‘Oh, they released something! Forget it!’ and write off lawsuits…

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Greaterdivinity

On its face this doesn’t sound too much different than what happened with CU…except for the whole, “We’re out of money and closing…and facing lawsuits JK WE’RE NOT CLOSING!” which makes it real easy to view this as a slapdash “product” just to release something.

I know it’s early footage, but it genuinely looks like something tossed together pretty quickly.

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Connor

“This spinoff won’t hurt the main game we don’t have funding for, in fact it will help it” is giving me some heavy Landmark/EQ Next vibes. Thankfully that also went great and Everquest Next is a fantastic and successful addition to the series.

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laelgon

It’s also gone super well for Camelot Unchained and Ashes of Creation. Turns out people love when they contribute money to projects, and the company then makes an entirely different game.

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Jo Watt

True, for Ashes of Creation when they brought out the BR a lot of ppl got mad. But in the end I’m glad they did it because they discovered a lot of problems with the early build and ended up redoing a lot of systems. So this kind of thing CAN help.

CU seems to be trucking along too so I get the anger behind the standalone they are working on as well but eh maybe it will help improve their game as well.

Now this is something entirely different… Chronicles of Elyria literally said, oops no more money, right after a huge land sale btw for plots in game, closed shop and said their oh so sorry. As soon as mentions of lawsuit the story shifted as mentioned here: “Oh wait kidding we are working on the game in my mom’s basement, promise, some cool ppl are even working on it for free!” And now they suddenly have the staff and money to put out stand alone games on top of it not effecting the over all development of the already crawling main project… BS.