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Good News! Fresh off their successful Kickstarter campaigns for Obduction and the Myst 25th Anniversary Collection, Cyan is running a campaign to fund a new game: Firmament. The campaign ends on Friday.

Bad news: Unlike Obduction and the Myst collection, Firmament will be PC only:
Cyan said:
Cyan has always been a big Mac supporter. Myst started out as a Mac title, and over the years, Cyan has always tried to release each of our games for the Mac. We'd love to continue that tradition with Firmament, as an indie studio, but with the minimum funding and resources we anticipate having available, and the complexity involved, this campaign will be focused on Windows (PC and VR).
Good news: Cyan added Mac support!

Bad news: The Mac support is added as a "stretch goal", meaning it will only happen if the project is funded at $115,000 over the base level.

OK, here's the thing. For PC users, there's little to no risk. If the project hits the base level goal, they get a game. If it doesn't, they aren't charged for their pledge.

But for Mac users, there is great risk. If the project hits the base goal but not the stretch goal, then you're out the pledge, and all you get is a game you can't play.

In fact, for Mac users to back the project now is even worse. Your pledge will be seen as supporting the PC version of the game, not a Mac version. And, it may decrease the pressure on PC users to back the game to get to the base level.

Cyan has said that if the PC version of the game is funded, they'll create some way for Mac users to donate money towards a Mac version via PayPal or something. But that's still a risk for the Mac users; you'd be charged for your donation, even if they don't get enough money. And again, if a Mac users backs the project now, that's not money that would be counted later towards funding a Mac version.

I don't think I'm the only Mac user who has made this analysis. Right now the base funding of game is in jeopardy. The PC users are encouraging the Mac users to step up and back the project, because, of course why wouldn't they? They have no risk.

(In the comments: Q. Where's the 10,000 missing backers from Obduction? A. They are all Mac users.)
 



But for Mac users, there is great risk. If the project hits the base goal but not the stretch goal, then you're out the pledge, and all you get is a game you can't play.
And if you read the FAQ, they actually say "If we reach the stretch goal, we'll go and see if we can make a version that is playable on a recent deskbound Mac". So there's a couple of consequences in addition to the ones you already outlined:
  • Many Mac users have no reason to support this project at all. Not even if they could indicate that their support was for the Mac version. They won't be able to run the game adequately and they know it in advance.
  • Cyan seem to expect that graphics performance will be an issue. So where they say 2015/16-ish, they may have to adjust that to 2017/2018-ish. Not fun if you own one of the earlier ones and pledged.
  • They may not actually be able to make it work satisfactorily at all. You've contributed toward development for a number of extra platforms, but there's no guarantee that they'll actually deliver anything Mac owners can play.
Cyan deserve recognition for their honesty, but I'm afraid that this is a crowdfunding that I as a Mac user would not even touch with a ten foot pole in a VR environment.
 


And if you read the FAQ, they actually say "If we reach the stretch goal, we'll go and see if we can make a version that is playable on a recent deskbound Mac". So there's a couple of consequences in addition to the ones you already outlined:
  • Many Mac users have no reason to support this project at all. Not even if they could indicate that their support was for the Mac version. They won't be able to run the game adequately and they know it in advance.
  • Cyan seem to expect that graphics performance will be an issue. So where they say 2015/16-ish, they may have to adjust that to 2017/2018-ish. Not fun if you own one of the earlier ones and pledged.
  • They may not actually be able to make it work satisfactorily at all. You've contributed toward development for a number of extra platforms, but there's no guarantee that they'll actually deliver anything Mac owners can play.
Cyan deserve recognition for their honesty, but I'm afraid that this is a crowdfunding that I as a Mac user would not even touch with a ten foot pole in a VR environment.
That's what happened with Obduction. I had what should have been a well supported iMac, but by the time it was released three years later (and a year overdue), the requirements had changed so it was barely supported.

And worse, they decided to require Sierra (for Metal fixes) even though Sierra had just been released. As far as I was concerned, Sierra was still in the stage where only reckless bleeding-edge early adopters had it; I certainly was not ready to put it on my main machine.
 


Bad news: Unlike Obduction and the Myst collection, Firmament will be PC only:
The Firmament Kickstarter reached its base goal and now is working on the stretch goal. The campaign ends at Fri, April 26 2019 5:00 PM CDT. Cyan just announced via email that they are committing to a Mac version:
Rand at Cyan said:
We really want the Mac, PS4, and EFIGS versions to happen. By the end of the Kickstarter campaign we'll be well on our way to the stretch goal, so we’ve decided to commit to find a way to make up any shortfall, so we can guarantee Firmament for Mac, PS4 and EFIGS. If you’re in that group and you’ve been holding back, we’re hoping that this decision will help get you to jump in now - knowing that you will definitely get a version for your language or platform - and you can still get it with the exclusive campaign content!
So if you're a fan of Cyan's games, now it's safe to back the project.
 


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