Frontier reconsiders controversial Elite: Dangerous refunds

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It’s finally Friday, and I don’t think anyone else is happier to see the weekend than the guys over at Frontier Developments. Things were going so well last weekend, but that all changed on Monday when they decided to announce the removal of an offline mode from Elite: Dangerous. That led to some shady refund policies being put into place, but thankfully Frontier don’t want to end the week on a negative note.

Many fans who had helped fund and test the game over this past year were a little angry that Frontier was barring them from claiming a refund, in light of the offline mode removal this week. Frontier made it very clear; if you had played the game at all in alpha or beta, refunds were off the table. It was a terrible way to treat customers who were essentially fundamental to the game’s development, and that’s why Frontier has had a change of heart.

After facing the wrath of the internet for a few hours yesterday, Frontier Development’s CEO David Braben announced via the game’s official forums that they would now consider refund cases individually, opening up the gates to those who have had time with the game.

Hi All,

I want to keep you all updated.

We initially declined some people’s request for refund as our records showed they have already played Elite: Dangerous online. After listening to many of the comments I received after my AMA here, we have since re-opened these requests and informed those people that we will be contacting them so that we can fully understand their individual situation before making a more informed decision.

We will be contacting them each in the next few working days.

Thanks,

David

That’s a lot more fair in my view. Now anyone with any sort of ties to Elite: Dangerous can attempt to apply for a refund. If their case is strong enough Frontier will probably notice, and issue a full refund for either financial backing or beta access.

Read  Sonic Mania on PC has Denuvo, always online requirement

It’s a fair trade-off after the late notice of offline removal, and it’s probably taught Frontier a valuable lesson on how to properly address people who are essentially the ones who will buy their game. Elite: Dangerous is out exclusively on PC next month, with a future console launch not being ruled out just yet.

Last Updated: November 21, 2014

  • CAE9872

    I haven’t funded a game for many reasons, but if a dev says “if we build it they will come” and then decides “if we unbuild it they must still come” well that doesn’t work.

    So yes all backers not happy with the game promised deserve a refund.

    • Bobb

      Except you didn’t buy a finished product, you funded a work in progress. If you’re not willing to accept the current state of the game, then you shouldn’t back the game.

      • Atrax

        All the more reason to get the refund. They have been telling us that “offline mode will be there”, and on that “fact” many ppl decided to buy the game. FD was waiting till the very last moment to tell us there will be no offline mode. And then they have a nerve to tell ppl we won’t be refunding ppl that already played the game even tho they have been asking ppl to “come and help test the game”. So they lured ppl into the testing just to tell them one month later that there will be no offline mode and there will be no refunds for ppl that helped test the damn thing.That is a definition of a hypocrit.
        So it’s cool for them to change their mind (even tho ppl have paid more than fairly for it) but it’s not ok for costumers to change their minds (and FD didn’t pay anything like costumers did). It’s about ethics, and they apparently have no idea what ethics and being moral is about.
        If they said game will be always online from the get go no one would bat an eyelid. But promising things and then braking your promise at the very last moment is pathetic to say the least.

        Besides, some interviews show you what kinda person Braben is. I just wished I saw those interviews sooner, cause I wouldn’t be backing the game if I did. If he’s willing to fuck over his own co-author than he’ll have no problem fucking us over in a heart beat. Simple as that. Game is shallow at this point in time anyway, so yea….

  • Captain JJ the fair

    They deserve a refund. Developers should stop chopping and changing on what they initially said they’d do.

  • Alien Emperor Trevor

    Good. Offline play is a big thing for some people and a snarky comment about playing the beta online, which you would do if you’re excited about it, means you WILL play the finished game online is BS.

    • Captain JJ the fair

      Agreed.

    • Flipping pirates!

      • Alien Emperor Trevor

        Space pirates!

  • Viking Of Divinity

    Yeah, If I were a backer, and had say, capped internet, and tried the online beta, I might want a refund. testing online with a cap, and playing the full game on a capped line are two different things.

  • SlasherZA

    In all honesty, when you buy a game that is based off of a MMO style world, dependent on other players to populate it, who in their right mind bought this for OFFLINE single player?

    Is having a 128kbps pipe to you pc THAT impossible to achieve?

    Most people are jumping on a bandwagon for nothing here and should get off their high horses.

  • CrasH

    The game is cheaper than the beta access was, so you paid to can play it now… so what stops everyone from saying they want their money back and then buy it for less after the refund… so i see their point and especially some backers who paid in more and now want the cash back… but all of that does not matter.

    Because one paid feature was removed… so the product has been devalued, whether you cared or not, or wanted it or not. Thus everyone should get their money back and they can decide to buy it as it is in its current state.

    I would love to see a mass court action against them, even if it breaks them and forces them to close, because allowing this to happen is more dangerous then doing nothing.

  • UltimateNinjaPandaDudeGuy

    You didn’t deliver on your promise? Give them the refund. Easy as that. You don’t get to lie to get money.

  • Lothy

    Wow companies really know how to take a much anticipated game and royally FA CUP it…

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