Let's be honest, though. It really is. That's why you release anything before the final product; it's why we get screenshots and movies and shots of WIP models and anything else. You're leading us on. Harmlessly, perhaps even beneficially since our continued enthusiasm is hopefully infectious, but it really is what's happening.
You could have just gone silent after the split from BtRL and disappear from the public eye and then a year or two from now suddenly Diaspora. But you didn't. You wanted, or at least were accepting of, the attention of the public. So at least own to what you're doing, even if it's not in the context you're being accused of.
How do you think we'd recruit new talent if we did that? You've probably forgotten but for the first few months Diaspora was completely silent. Very few people outside the team knew we even existed. We'd have been quite happy to be silent if we had the entire team to make the game in a reasonable time. We didn't. Our entire sound department with the exception of two (currently inactive) composers consists of people who heard of the project thanks to those videos and screenshots.
Several people who had left BtRL and were impossible to track down only got back in contact with us because we weren't silent. Hell, Starslayer had vanished a while before the break up. Without his reappearance we wouldn't have the Theseus or MK VIIe in R1.
The decision to go public was always driven by the fact that we desperately needed new blood. Hell, we still do. We have enough people to get the game out but one of the main reasons things have taken so long is because the art department is seriously understrength and our initial internal ETA wild-arse guesses assumed we'd be able to recruit at least a few modellers.
I won't deny that the main objective of the WIP stuff is to drum up interest in the game but you're completely wrong if you think that's just so we can lead people on. The main reason is so we can say "Here's the great game we're working on. Come help us if you can!" The side effect is that we do get other people interested in the game and we're not unhappy about it. But it was never the main goal.
Given the fact that at the time btrl had been around for years and a demo which looked (to me at least) like a finished mod short of a few missions had been released, I don't think it was unreasonable to assume that when Kara said soon, he expected people would be thinking in the time frame of months not years.
Given the fact that at the time btrl had been around for years so did we.
The simple fact is that the Diaspora team completely underestimated the scale of the task that we had ahead of us. That much should be obvious from the one and only time we gave a release estimate. We've learned our lesson since then and we don't give estimates when we don't have any sensible way of working out how long something will take.
Although the BtRL demo was released we can't use everything from the demo. We aren't the same team. We had to rebuild quite a lot of stuff. The entire BtRL interface is completely unusable for instance. We have to rebuild it. Some models were over 3 years old at the time of the split and would look hideously ugly in the game with all the newer stuff. Despite that I still think we're working more quickly than we did on BtRL after the demo came out.
You will start hearing estimates eventually. Once we enter the beta period we'll certainly be able to narrow it down to the exact quarter we'll be releasing (and probably further than that). At the very least if we delay then we can say exactly what the issue holding us up is. Right now we can't because there are too many of them and it just sounds like boring whining if I say what the problems are.
I would guess many on here feel that both Kara and you knew it was nowhere near ready but was happy to fib to keep peoples interest up.
Nope. Didn't lie at all. As I explained before we really did think we could get it out soon. It's very easy to underestimate how much work remains on a project like this. Especially as Diaspora is much bigger than the BtRL demo and requires a lot more stuff in it's final form before release.
Fair play to you, best to have an active message board rather than an empty one but don't get all defensive and snotty when you face the occasional moan from here.
Don't moan. Just ask politely for information. We're trying to make sure that we're always approachable and easy to talk to. When people ask us questions that aren't in the FAQ we're more than happy to answer them (or at least say why we can't).
What pisses us off is when people tell us we should give up more of our free time or spend less time with our loved ones because they want to play a computer game. People who want to get the game more quickly could do some promotional work. Mention it on other sites you visit when you see "What Games Are You Looking Forward To" threads. Cause getting us the extra developers we need will speed up development.
But if you are the sort of person not willing to lift a finger to help, what exactly gives you the right to moan?