Camelot Unchained focuses on delivering a ‘solid foundation’ for immersive animation

    
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Even as City State throttles down a little for summer vacations, it doesn’t spell a complete stop for the Camelot Unchained train. The studio’s monthly newsletter arrived to touch on several of the initiatives that emerged in July, including the male Hamadryad mob concept art, changes to the Heavy Fighters and Archers, better player motion, and the first testing phase for the Coastal Lowlands.

Character animations are being given serious consideration: “Once completed, we’ll have a solid foundation for player motion that’s as robust as a networked game can have, and will be able to use that foundation as a stepping stone to some really cool features we have planned that will increase player immersion and sense of empowerment in the CU universe.”

As of late, Camelot Unchained has fallen under ever-increasing scrutiny over questions concerning its finances, transparency, refund cadence, and development length.

MMORPG veterans will know that Camelot Unchained, which was originally Kickstarted in 2013, has taken flak over the years thanks to delays, the founding of a second studio, the announcement of a second game using CU’s custom-built engine, and delayed refunds. The game entered its “beta one” phase back in 2018, with tests capable of putting 3000 humans and bots on the battlefield simultaneously. As of 2021, the studio says it is still paying refunds and is still working on both games, though it did not follow through on interviews with press.
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dinarian_

Just checking in before MJ holds another randomly schedule stream (so that nobody with inconvenient questions about refunds can show up if MJ hold his streams on random dates/times now instead of his usual end of month schedule), today is day 527 without a refund and there is still no signs that CSE/MJ has even finished with refunds from 2/2020 yet. How many more months have to pass without progress before we can say that the whole June speed up claim was a lie? What about the whole September 2020 speed up? Since we are like 10 months out from the first time CSE said things would get better and nothing has gotten better I assume at least we are allowed to call the September claims of a speed up a lie?

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Christopher Duris

What is sad is how people don’t understand how money work.
If I wanted to create a video game, I would ask people for money because I don’t have enough money.
This money would pay developers, graphists, servers, computers, etc …
And once you have paid for something, the money is gone.
MJ has spent the money, how can you refund people with a money you spent ?

As a company when you leverage funds, if you fail you will never refund them . Except if you, voluntary shit on your project, threw it to the garbage and took the money for you.

If you invest in something and ask for a refund 1 week later (you know games don’t take 2 year to be made …) it’s imposible for a studio to do anything.

I understand people frustration but you got to understand how money work.
If the studio closes his doors, you will never have your money back because there is no money left.

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dinarian_

MJ/CSE are responsible for the refund policy they choose to include as part of their marketing strategy/contract/terms and conditions.

Atokad2887
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Atokad2887

I guess MJ’s PR told the man to stop posting here. I use to live for his reactions on massively.

Relmharver
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Relmharver

MJ and CSE:

– stopped commenting here, one of the last sites giving them any coverage, after picking a fight with MOP staff
– stopped commenting (long ago) on MMORPG.com
– stopped commenting on the Reddit, despite moderation heavily in their favor
– shut down commenting on official FB posts
– shut down commenting and like/dislikes on official YouTube videos
– heavily censor the official forums, controlling the speech of their own backers in a private setting
– uncertain of how much censorship goes on in the official Discord, maybe someone else can elaborate
– maintain a total NDA after over seven years of development

But you know, they’re extremely transparent and have nothing to hide.

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dinarian_

Discussions of the forbidden r word (refund) will result in a ban from CSE discord

Relmharver
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Relmharver

This is simply not the way any company behaves if they are in a good situation. They’re completely trying to control the narrative, which indicates to me that MJ is in panic mode. He’s always been a control freak, as indicated by his arguing with commenters and even the press, always trying to have the last word. I believe that the fate of the game has been out of his control for a while now, so he’s trying to control the last thing he can, which is public perception. It’s much, much too late for that.

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dinarian_

Also if you ask him about how he is STILL holding your money hostage after 515 days of waiting he will ban you from the forums.

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Mark Jacobs

Dinarian, in regards to the forums, only when you post in the wrong thread or otherwise violate the TOS, as you did on purpose I suspect so that you could come in and post the above messages. People are asking in the Refund thread without any banning from me.

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dinarian_

I simply replied to the claim you made in the thread where you made the claim. And yes people are asking in the refund mega thread and have been for months and months and months and you don’t answer anyone there either. Or in the support emails.

I didn’t take a quote from some random thread and put it into that thread. I was just continuing the conversation where you had begun it.

For those interested, the ToS violation I am guilty of was a 1 sentence reply to what MJ something MJ said. My sentence simply said.

“You would prefer instead to simply hold our money hostage instead?”

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Mark Jacobs

And I never talked about refunds Dinarian, that was another Backer such as yourself. I was referring to the mistakes that CSE has made (which is why the game has taken longer), and that we didn’t ask the Community to pay for it by trying to raise money via sales, mounts, cosmetics, etc.

But you turned it into an opportunity to talk about refunds which is why you were banned. You knew the rules when you posted your response and right on queue, you came here and posted.

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dinarian_

It is some really weird mental gymnastics needed to say that backers aren’t paying for your mistakes because I and all the other refunders like me are still financially tied to this failure of a company even after 515 days of working really hard not to be. So please now that I have your attention somewhere that you can’t ban me explain to me how I am not still paying for your incompetence and arrogance since you still very much are holding my money hostage.

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Duke Nukem

You know Mark, you’ve engaged in a whole lot of censorship on your own forums and you have a couple of very “special” defenders that have attempted to censor people on other outlets. You can come on here and act like you’re running a normal gaming studio but your conduct has been extraordinarily unprofessional in regards to refunds and your attempts to sweep it under the rug is only damaging your reputation that much more. I’m honestly at the point where I don’t even want to play this game if it does come out because to be frank…I don’t like you, I don’t like your mods, and I don’t like the overzealous fans that make it their day job to come after people that are upset that they’ve been waiting OVER a year for a refund. There is nothing but bad will between you and the backers that you’ve let down at this point.

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dinarian_

It is 11 am on a work day MJ dont you have refunds you should be doing right now?

Relmharver
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Relmharver

Mark I keep wondering this: Why haven’t you just refunded Dinarian’s money? If her claim that her refund has been pending for 515 days is true, why hasn’t it been taken care of? Are there other pending refunds that are even older that need processed first? Are you just punishing her at this point? You realize that the refund issue is making CSE look horrible in the press and in various forums, right? If there’s a logical explanation at this point (please tell me it’s not still Covid) as to why you guys are so far behind in refunds, please, explain it to us.

Wirklichkeit
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Wirklichkeit

You should add to this “Mark Jacobs reads official forums but still hides from refund questions by not replying to anyone in Refund thread since June of this year”. This screenshot was taken yesterday by another forum member:

laksjjlsakdjf.PNG
Bree Royce
Staff
Bree Royce

He was literally in the daily grind comments Friday.

Relmharver
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Relmharver

OK, missed that one. That’s one out of eight.

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Spariha

Speaking as someone who works in the games industry. Covid has been a trialing time and working from home certainly doesn’t help in a creative environment. I know it’s impacted my work, but saying things like “I hope they lose millions for this” is just not acceptable. People that work there have bills to pay and families to support.

I’m sorry to hear that you guys haven’t got your refunds and I hope that it is resolved now CSE is starting the process of going back into the office, but because you dont like the actions of one person dont let that tarnish the other talented people that are developing the game.

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Bruno Brito

Uh…what? Why would our words be unacceptable? Do you think we have any power over this game being successful or not?

Friend, the person who holds the reins is Mark. He decides whether CU is a failure or a success. All we can do is complain about it.

Relmharver
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Relmharver

Blame MJ for running the game into the ground and failing his employees, not the people who gave him millions in good faith.

Wirklichkeit
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Wirklichkeit

saying things like “I hope they lose millions for this” is just not acceptable

Of course it is.

People that work there have bills to pay and families to support.

Nobody wishes anything bad for an individual employees. It’s all about leadership of the company which decides the action of the company and which handles the finances and who keeps being dishonest to everyone, including potentially to their own employees as well as to their investors. People like that absolutely do deserve losing millions, because of their own incompetence and most importantly their own dishonesty.

As for individual employees – they always have a choice of leaving the company while they still can, plenty of companies with better reputation and better chances of releasing a successful product are hiring, including plenty of companies providing work for freelancers over the internet where you don’t even have to move away from your current location, especially now when there is a good reason for companies to keep workers at home instead of requiring them to go to office.

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David Ko

Marc J: “I owe You nothing financially or morally”

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Sam Mora

‘As of late, Camelot Unchained has fallen under ever-increasing scrutiny…’

Not entirely true. As time goes by, fewer care other than those promised refunds, many over a year past due. Look at the fanbase on any forum for CU, which is generally a well known two man tag team. There is now no real interest left.

City State probably has nothing to lose at this point giving blatant false promises (lies) such as refunds, news updates since 2015 of stunning progress, and even the more recent promise then revised to (likely?) of a big fun game loop by the end of this summer? They are going on summer break?

CS has nothing to lose, but MassivelyOP does have some credibility to protect. Any of it’s staff that is in beta realizes why they are threatened with the NDA with the slightest off reference. There are still people commenting on forums who are buying packs for CU based on some of these glowing promises articles with little pushback.

At some point there should be a more hostile article, probably featuring the most vocal people waiting over a year for a refund instead of waiting for MJ to grant an interview.

Atokad2887
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Atokad2887

THIS JUST IN!!! MJ promises more foundations without actually building on top of them…says refunds are flowing when hes at the office but probably isnt…all this and more at 10 stay tuned!

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dinarian_

So, day 512 and still no refund for me or my husband or anyone else waiting for a refund that keeps me updated. From everything I have seen it looks like we are still talking about being stalled at refunds from February of 2020….17 months ago. Still the very first month of the post betrayal game refundpocalypse. But surely MJ the self proclaimed very honest man will be along soon to tell us how refunds are still totally definitely being paid….for sure.

Relmharver
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Relmharver

Makes you wonder exactly how bad their financial position is. I mentioned before that I believe if they could afford to pay out the refunds at this point, they would. It would be illogical to continue to garner the bad press and backer ire for not paying them, when there’s such an easy fix. But then, I’m assuming that MJ is still in a logical state of mind.

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rk70534

Call a lawyer. Stop counting days. These posts benefit no one.

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Rndomuser

These posts benefit no one.

That is not true. Those posts serve as a good warning to all potential customers who may want to buy the beta access or even final version of the game, whenever it will be out. It may (hopefully) make rational people think twice whether they want to deal with a company which potentially (it’s just an assumption but it is a perfectly rational one) may not have enough money to produce fully finished game (since they cannot even afford to pay promised refund for a person who is waiting for 512 days) and which is potentially lying to everyone by claiming they still do refunds (as mentioned during last stream) even though some people are still waiting for 512 days. Especially since there is absolutely NO WAY for a potential customer to know whether the company fulfilled their promise of refunds in any other way – the company itself refuses to post refund updates in their own newsletters or anywhere on website, they refuse to provide an interview about refunds and discussing refunds is not allowed on official Discord for anyone. And the only official forum thread regarding refunds is hidden behind the paywall (meaning you must buy beta access before gaining access to it).

If it really bothers you that much and you personally consider that those posts do not provide benefits for you – you can always skip reading comments, no one is forcing you to do so.

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draugris

No, dinarian won’t do something that actually makes sense. She is busy contaminating every CU thread with her endless whining.

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dinarian_

I am sure that MJ/CSE would much rather people did not know all the lies they have told this year and continue to tell. I know they don’t want their investors and the attorney general of VA to know that they are still not being honest or accountable for refunds. I am certain that MJ would prefer that the articles weren’t ‘contaminated’ with things like the truth of how backers are treated, never the less they are still holding our money hostage and until people are paid it is actually very important that the pressure on CSE to actually be honest for a change and do what they promised rightfully should remain.

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Armsman

So you consider someone who was promised a refund 512 days ago, by someone who claims he’s a very honest and upfront person, to be “whining”?

You must really enjoy that CU white knight armor suit.

At this point Mark Jacobs comes across more like a grifter than a developer. If you make a promise to people to give refunds to those who want it, you need to follow through; especially if you like to claim you’re an upfront and honest person.

And no I don’t have an have never had any interest in Camelot and chained and I’ve never pledged a cent. But it was always interesting how Marc Jacobs love to come into these Camelot unchained threads on MOP where everyone was seeing as praises and calling him one of the few honest developers left. Of course once he showed his true colors developing a completely different game with CU backers money; and claiming somehow that he can’t give refunds because of covid-19 and the refund information is on one standalone PC that I guess isn’t networked; or a group who’s coming up with a MMO that’s supposed to run on the internet can’t come up with the way to safely network one PC so that he could do refunds remotely….

Yeah a lot of things here don’t pass the smell test. Grifters need to be called out for what they are: and if you’re going to claim to be an honest and upfront person you need to give an honest and upfront answer as to why a promise you made 512 days ago still hasn’t been fulfilled.

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dinarian_

rk70534, if you have the time, resources, connections, and money to involve an attorney then please by all means do so and let other refunders know who to contact so we can all get this ball moving. In the mean time I will continue to make sure people know that MJ is not paying people the refunds he promised them over a year ago. You may not consider it a benefit, but allowing MJ’s little ‘I am paying refunds and I am a very honest man’ narrative to go unchallenged is actual what benefits nobody.

Relmharver
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Relmharver

They’re going to miss the window for CU by 5+ years. You thought Crowfall was disappointing and a flop? Just wait. Mark Jacobs and his other mystery “investors” deserve to lose millions on this after they squandered the backers’ money.

Wirklichkeit
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Wirklichkeit

Mark Jacobs and his other mystery “investors” deserve to lose millions on this

They absolutely do deserve this after all dishonesty and incompetence (especially dishonesty, like still pretending that “refunds are being made” without providing any factual evidence to number of refunds or which date they are up to), sadly this will also mean the loss of money for backers. It was the backer’s own fault for trusting their money to such horrible people, however it would be nice if at least some of them would get promised refunds, especially people who are in a much worse financial situation than they used to be when backing this game.

Leo
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Leo

Just curious, is this concept art of something that has already been finished and modeled, or like concept art for something to be created at a future date?