Dreamworld actually released an alpha, and it’s exactly as bad as you thought it’d be

    
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So, we’re back to Dreamworld again. Regular readers already know that this game has been a wild ride ever since it popped up on Kickstarter. It was pitched as massive, content-bedecked “infinite open world MMO” with “millions of players” in a “single world.” It was also being made by a pair of absolute novice developers with piles of prefab assets and supposed YCombinator investment, and those devs sought even more money from MMO gamers through Kickstarter, which they got because, you know, we can’t have nice things. Through it all, endless streams of journalists and YouTube influencers pointed out that it was probably a scam, and even if it wasn’t actually a scam, it was so pie-in-the-sky it would have the same outcome as a scam, so we should probably treat it that way and stop giving it money. Then the ex-fiancee of one of the developers came out with her own video pointing out some of the lies in the original campaign, ultimately concluding that the Kickstarter was predicated on some deception but wasn’t necessarily an intentional scam.

I told you this was wild.

So here we are at the end of May – what did 663 Kickstarter backers buy with their $64K in Kickstarter funds? Alpha. Yes, these dudes actually managed to push out a very early alpha, and it’s playable by people who backed at the right tier! Except… it’s exactly what you’d expect from a couple of amateurs trying to build the best MMORPG ever with only a year of development under their belts.

That means YouTube is awash with videos from YouTubers (again, dunking on games like this is a whole cottage industry on the platform) trawling the alpha game to demonstrate just how bad it is.

While the devs on Discord say they’ve implemented a core city, PvP, new assets, and house construction during this phase, the reality is more like a mixture of bugs and purchased assets and distinctly Minecraft-like design. Even folks in the official Discord have called it “AssetWorld.”

Notably, Skiazos, one of the YouTubers who helped promote the Dreamworld developers with a somewhat credulous interview early on, has completely changed sides, with a string of videos over the past week saying he’s “come to reality” believing the game is a “scam” and the “worst alpha game ever.” Apparently he’s decided to troll the game by flooding it with… green peppers? It’s a whole mood really.

Worth noting here is that the Kickstarter never promised more than an alpha; scroll through the tiers and you’ll notice that none of them actually promises a finished, final game or a copy of one. Just the alpha and a bunch of perks. In other words, they’ve either accidentally or cleverly managed to fulfill their key crowdfund promise, making any legal action in the future that much more difficult.

But why would you need legal action? You didn’t back this thing. Right?

Source: Discord, Skiazos, Callum, Strife
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G I G A B E A R

This is why developers are hesitant to show early alpha builds.

Dreamworld has been in development for less than a year, and actually had funding(from ycombinator and kickstarter) for like, a couple months now.

Yet the internet declares the entire game dead when the process has only just begun.

I expect that process will surprise quite a few people, whether or not a final game comes to fruition.

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Davlos

So are you all about full transparency, or not?

We have you on record in the comments on various articles here constantly railing against NDAs and declaring a certain game Dead On Arrival, but now you fume when someone else does it!

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G I G A B E A R

I’m not fuming about them being transparent. I am fully behind their process.

I’m remarking on the unprecedented abuse they are taking by showing something this early in development. Something which will be vastly improved over the next year.

Despite the trolling and bad PR, because they involved their community, we can help them ensure the game is tailored to the people who actually care about it and build a community that will stick around.

Something which is not possible when the developers are not transparent.

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Davlos

It’s the very same abuse you used to lay on another project, ranging from calling it a scam to accusations of using stuff from the asset store.

Would you like the archived tweets?

How about this for starters?

forums-dot-mmorpg.com/discussion/484507/game-doa

#gigabearwaswrong

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G I G A B E A R

Oh no, I was quite right. The BR did a lot of damage, and did result in a lawsuit from one of their contractors that would not have happened without it. The game is also under NDA years after it was supposed to be over with. That, too, I shall be proven right on. Give it a few weeks and this will be clear.

My mistake wasn’t in my prognosticating, it was in trying to bully the developers. That’s never a good thing, and it never works. They just resent you for it and then ban you.

I spend my days now with developers who are applying community-driven development. I respect them and am respected in turn. It’s working splendidly.

Finally, you’re not going to cancel me. What happened with Ashes was regrettable, but I’m not that person anymore.

Move on with your life.

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Davlos

So, you did try to bully Intrepid Studios while shouting to the world – with MOP writers and Bree included – that you were cheated out of your money. The only reason you can’t wiggle your way out of getting nailed by calling it all ‘fake news’ is because your every move has been documented.

You can’t be trusted, not even with your claims on Dreamworld. If you really did ‘move on’ as you claimed, you wouldn’t have shown up in AOC yesterday, only to get banned again.

How does it feel to have the same medicine fed to you, after what you’ve done to Blizzard and Cryptic Studios?

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G I G A B E A R

Wasn’t me. Haven’t posted a word to the AoC discord in over a year. There is no point in doing so.

Perhaps latter on I’ll get my unban, but by then I’ll have my “core gameplay loop” and probably be having way too much fun entertaining people to bother with Ashes.

Besides, nobody over there wants me.

A problem I don’t have in any other project I’ve backed. Quite the opposite in fact.

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Davlos

The ‘gameplay loop’ of grinding resources so you’d have a lantern to protect a build from getting wiped is already a joke. Second Life does whatever DW purports to do, already executes it better, and secures builds by revoking modify permissions. Entire zones are easily secured from griefing that way.

Users on SL have already been making a legitimate living off it while you’re enabling other narcissistic idiots like yourself who overestimate their abilities.

The added bonus is people in SL who indulge in size inflation fetish like you have their own space and you’ll get to do your thing in front of an audience who are into it. Right now all you’re doing is to continue exposing to people who did not consent to be a party to your fetish.

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G I G A B E A R

This is projection

What I am doing isn’t any more fetish content than Godzilla is.

Nor any less appropriate.

Anyone who isn’t interested in also free to go about their day.

I do it because it is fun, including for the vast majority of people I’ve entertained over the years.

Either way we are way off topic for this article.

Possibly not for a later one they’ll be writing though. Until then.

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Davlos
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Giggilybits

This is obviously a scam but not the first of its kind. Remember ET for the Atari 2600. Or Heroes of the Lance for C64. How many games have been published that should have never been published throughout the years. Probably alot.

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Dug From The Earth

This has to be a joke, or a scam, or both.

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Davlos

The more I look at Dreamworld’s behavior and their output, I think it’s less of a scam and more of two narcissistic persons’ project gone too far.

It does appear that the pair are sincere about the desire to push out a game, but have overestimated their abilities so severely, that what they have released may look like a masterpiece to them whilst straddling the peak of Mount Stupid on the Dunning-Kruger curve.

Dreamworld has become an indictment of any contemporary notion of meritocracy when it managed to secure a spot on ycombinator through nepotism whilst numerous other worthy projects could’ve had their spot on ycombinator instead.

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soup4000

two biomes, 1 screen and 0.3 genres down… all biomes screens and genres to go

i can’t wait to play it as a VR MUD on my smart thermostat.

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Neurotic

I feel sorry for the two developers, ultimately. What happened in their lives that lead them to the point of thinking that this was the best way to do things? Could they not have foreseen the tidal wave of negativity and dragging that they have brought down on themselves? It’s sad because maybe they’re all like “Dude, we’re doing it! We’re making a game!” And we’re all like “Morons! Jerks!” It’s sad, and bewildering.

misanthropomorphic
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misanthropomorphic

Their Kickstarter promise of an alpha reminds me of the early days of eBay, when people would trick others into buying a picture of an item, rather than a real physical product. They were always careful in their descriptions to never promise the product itself.

These guys are about to get a rude awakening from a sea of lawyers. The only Dream World they’ll be seeing is after they fall asleep in their cardboard-box homes at the side of the road.

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Bruno Brito

OOOOOHH..

DREAM world.

I get it now.

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Schlag Sweetleaf

zzzzz

BAD DREAM WORLD.gif
Turing fail
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Turing fail

I love the metaphor of a compound disaster.

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Schlag Sweetleaf

double dose of D’oh!

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Raidervc

Imagine risking your entire reputation and future earning potential/career over a…$60,000 Kickstarter.

The venture capital guys will bury them in court, I have no doubt.

Turing fail
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Turing fail

From the intel cursedseishi provides, their reputations have already been expended.

Turing fail
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Turing fail

When I see things like this scam, I think of how much more money I could make if I didn’t have this pesky sense of empathy…