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Moebius: Empire Rising Adventure Game Delayed For Linux Because Of Unity3D

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Moebius: Empire Rising an adventure game from Jane Jensen is already confirmed for Linux and we mentioned recently the Linux release has been delayed. We now know what is causing the delay.

Speaking on their steam forum they stated:

QuoteYeah we've been doing development so far using the last version of Unity 3, while Unity 4 is where the Linux support began. Upgrading to Unity 4 in the middle of development could potentially be quite messy so we opted to wait until after we finalized the PC and Mac versions of the game, and are now in the process of getting ready to jump into the Linux version.


Now that is an acceptable reason for delay, I wouldn't want to do a major upgrade of the underlying engine in the middle of the dev-cycle and possibly spending weeks fixing everything delaying it for everyone else. We may want our Linux version, but it just isn't acceptable to delay everyone else for it.

I wish more developers would give honest reasoning like this.

About
Moebius: Empire Rising is a contemporary adventure that merges classic point-and-click puzzle solving with Jane Jensen’s sophisticated storytelling. Travel the world using Malachi’s unique deductive powers to analyse suspects, make historical connections, and uncover the truth behind a theory of space and time the government will defend at any cost.

I say this again and again, unless a developer states a Linux version exists, just don't buy or support it.
The problem is though, unless we do jump through hoops like this, we probably won't get as many games, so it's like a rock and a hard place type of situation.

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The comments on this article are closed.
Xil 12 April 2014 at 1:55 pm UTC
I have donated to about 20 kickstarters, some did not work like Haunts: The Manse Macabre and a few others but I have no uissie with that simply because to me it feels they where honest and did try. Moebius is so far is the only one I regret.

Although you might find the reason they give a valid one Liam, it was never mentioned on their kickstarter, all that was said was: If we get at least $400K there will be a Linux version. The whole unity 3 vs 4 excuse came later. Then they hook up with Phoenix online who did not even consider a linux version of the Gabriel Knight remake which at least made me go hmmmmm

So yup I feel they did the Linux stretch goal as a gimmick to get us to donate, maybe we get a linux version but that will be more a side product then actually something they really intended.

-Xil
Sslaxx 12 April 2014 at 2:01 pm UTC
I point out that I'd raised this issue with them shortly after Cognition's release. The excuse was the same one given then. And they've been reluctant to give any indication of a Linux release for the Gabriel Knight remake, too. So what did they do?
adolson 12 April 2014 at 5:10 pm UTC
XilSo yup I feel they did the Linux stretch goal as a gimmick to get us to donate
Promise a Linux version in order to get rich off of Linux users. Totally makes sense...
Prophet5 12 April 2014 at 11:57 pm UTC
We have consumer protection laws in Aus that state (amongst other things) you can't use false or misleading information in order to sell a product or service; in which case they can be taken to task over Linux stretch goals that don't deliver. They have to provide a Linux version or refund money. I have no idea about US law as to if there are any consumer protection laws. Given that some clown has been selling plots of the moon to the stupid rich, I'd say probably not.
Speedster 13 April 2014 at 5:36 am UTC
XilAlthough you might find the reason they give a valid one Liam, it was never mentioned on their kickstarter, all that was said was: If we get at least $400K there will be a Linux version. The whole unity 3 vs 4 excuse came later.

Oh come on, the unity 3 vs 4 was the reason behind having a stretch goal. They didn't give the exact details on what the stretch goal funds would be spent on, "upgrading to Unity 4 plus testing/bugfixing on linux" but then again, other projects don't either -- most people don't care about that level of detail, and the single-page kickstarter format really discourages it! I discussed linux port issues early on at the Pinkerton forum, and they have always been consistent that reuse of existing adventure-genre code in Unity 3 was the reason for Linux needing extra effort.

XilThen they hook up with Phoenix online who did not even consider a linux version of the Gabriel Knight remake which at least made me go hmmmmm

That is totally not true, Phoenix Online expected to make a Linux version of GK20 after getting the whole upgrade to Unity 4 thing done! The tech lead didn't realize that the contract with Activision was not flexible enough to kick in another platform merely because it became easy to do so, and he ended up having to apologize for getting our hopes up. If Jane Jenson were a big Linux advocate, she might have attempted a renegotiation, but considering that Jane's a game developer who doesn't care a lot about platforms it's not surprising she isn't willing to take the risk of annoying Activision just to make us Linux users happy. I'm sure all the grumpy comments she's got on the topic haven't made her regret her decision either, so I've tried to shut up about it after just a few posts ;)
s_d 13 April 2014 at 4:50 pm UTC
QuoteThat is totally not true, Phoenix Online expected to make a Linux version of GK20 after getting the whole upgrade to Unity 4 thing done!

Exactly. Also, if you look at the timeline, she'd worked with them on Cognition way before announcing the Moebius campaign. Thusly, it's my theory that, #1 she became convinced to work with them when launching her own studio, #2 they were a Unity3D shop at that time and heavily invested in Unity version 3/3.5, and #3 support for Linux hadn't been announced by Unity Technologies at the time of negotiation with Activision before the launch of the campaign.

What I take from that is that she negotiated development rights for the platforms supported by her team's tools at the time of negotiation. After following the project for years (two years yesterday, in fact!), and reading between-the-lines in relation to their trials, frustrations and delays with announcing GK20, it's clear what sort of actor we have in Activision. I can understand why she's concerned about them cancelling the entire project if she takes a wrong step and it's perceived to be a liability (they almost certainly retain those rights). She probably thinks that she has the best chance of negotiating new porting rights after release, like in the AAA world with console games and such.

That's another reason why the AAA publishing model is so awful... it's structured specifically to make all follow-on ports feel like second-class citizens, with delays, lack of commitments, etc. The maximum effort expended is always on their launch platforms. Any effort beyond that is on the shoulders of the studio and it's not unheard-of for studios to, essentially, beg the publisher to permit them to put out patches, ports, and additional post-release content.
Speedster 15 April 2014 at 6:43 am UTC
I hope the Moebius release today is a big success on the initial platforms, and the team gains momentum on their porting task with the resulting tide of enthusiasm
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