Submitted by Duion on
After having experienced my "Open Source Games Groundhog Day" in my recent blog post I felt that somehow it feels similar to some phenomenon I witnessed before many times. Then it dawned on me and it is a goon cult, you know one of those vaporware projects, that never get finished, but keep making promises and their delusional overloyal fanbase will eat it up and stick to it and keep pouring money into it.
Before anyone argues "But free software is not commercial" I say, yes and no. The non-commercial or pseudo non-commercial part, makes it harder to detect as a goon cult, because normally a goon cults primary objective is to milk money from its cult members, but even without the money aspect, all the other mechanics can still apply, similar to me running a business, even though it is not commercial, but it operates in the same realm and after the same rules as a commercial business. Therefore I concluded that there also are non-commercial goon cults.
The most well known goon cult is probably Star Citizen, that originally wanted 500 000 Dollars in funding and release their game in 2014 and well we have 2021 now and they have 320 Million in funding and still not released what they supposedly were to release, so there is obviously something wrong here, but people cannot figure it out, because they are in a cult where they have become delusional and if you criticize it you will get banned. Of course there were other game projects, that took that long to develop, but they either never released or released after that long time and they delivered what they promised, not so with a goon cult, a goon cult will keep making more and more promises, raise the bar every time and then never deliver. The difference between a real project and a goon cult is, that a real project has a definitive time and/or money limit and they need to definitively deliver or definitively not deliver, but a goon cult has no time or money limit and it will never definitively deliver or definitively not deliver, it will always be in limbo and their fans will be in limbo as well, trapping their money and soul there, never to be released and most cult members hardly ever make it out there alive.
It is kind of evil, if you think about it and the wasted money is not even the worst part, the worst part about it is probably the wasted time, hopes, dreams, effort, progress etc of people that were promised something, kept waiting and then got nothing. I also think the main goal of a cult is to capture peoples souls, the money is more of a side effect and some cults are not even after the money so strongly, at least not in the beginning or when they are still weak. As our culture and technology progressed cults revolving around software and especially video games came to be, since that was where most people are nowadays, it has become number one pastime of people and therefore became a lucrative place to start a cult.
The open source gaming cult is a rather small cult and it hardly makes any money, though some niches probably do make some money, but it is still a cult and regarding making promises and never delivering they are even one of the best I mean worst candidates. While Star Citizen is developing for over a decade now and not delivering the real product or what they promised to deliver 7 years ago, they at least develop a bit and deliver something, whereas the open source gaming community does almost no development and delivers almost nothing and that for way over a decade, like 15 or 20 years.
The open source game "developers" community keeps making promises that there will be progress, new games, upgrades to new tech and new users, but it has never happened in all my lifetime. If you look at it with a bit of experience in game development and a bit of common sense you can quickly figure out, that their approach is almost certain doomed to fail, as they refuse to adapt to new tech intentionally and instead keep modding some games that have been open sourced around 15 years ago, which were already far behind commercial titles when they were open sourced. Basically what they are doing is playing with the garbage that commercial developers have given them, it is called a source dump, where they figured that their software is worthless to them anyway so they can open source it and get some publicity for it how moral and humble they are in making it open source, but in reality it is mostly useless anyway, which is the prime reason they are doing it. The other big reason for source dumps is that the company hopes that some kind of community will maintain it at least and maybe develop something out of it, but this has not happened for the most part in the open source game developer scene and where it has happened, they split their effort up into separate projects and did not care to develop the engine in general so others can benefit from it.
I was even part of this goon cult for a bit, though I was mostly watching it from the outside hoping that soon there will be some game that I can play, make levels and mods for, but it never happened, that is why I made my own game after wasting years of my time waiting, because the stupid goon cult made promises that soon they would deliver. In the past like around the year 2000 when game modding began on games like Half-Life, Quake and Unreal there were no open source alternatives or at least no meaningful ones, so for a long time there was just nothing else to work with, but it was not that bad, because the modding community was fine and the games were partly abandonedware anyway, so the developers did not care people using their games for mods. However this changed soon as the companies behind the games realized that they can capitalize on the modding community and bought off some of the most promising developers and in the same time closing their games again more with proprietary features, so it would be harder for people to create mods and even if they created mods, they would get less of a fanbase, because the company behind it would already gather most of the fanbase through their superior marketing budget and abilities.
So it looked hopeless for me wanting to do game development and I mostly gave up on it, especially since the competition already made technologically far superior games, that I did not even want to touch Quake engine based games anymore, because how inferior they were. This is also the first time I realized that open source software is important, because if you mod a proprietary game, it will eventually get outdated and you have to buy the new game and start all over again and that given that the original game even allowed modding, which in most cases were not the case and where it was the case it was only possible very limitedly, because well it was not open source. Sadly at that time there were no open source engines available to use, well they were, but they were far inferior to what was available commercially and they were really hard to use, since they were just source dumps and it was not a game or game engine intended for the end user.
After waiting a few years in limbo with no hope I realized that after a few years people managed to make open source games based on the open sourced Quake engines, well not real games, it is more them trying to reverse engineer and rebuild the games originally made with them, so their result was not very appealing to a regular gamer. So I never took that open source game development scene very serious, since hey why would I bother to play an open source Quake ripoff that is worse than the original, when there are already games like Crysis out there, that are so far superior, that anything below that feels too boring to even touch, so for me an open source alternative at least needs the possibility that with a lot of effort and time it will eventually at least remotely match the quality of commercial titles.
And this is where the goon cult seemed to go into full force. I mean think about it, there are only a few options you have if you are faced with an almost hopeless situation and an almost unbeatable enemy in form of big corporations with near infinite money and manpower: 1. You admit reality and admit defeat, 2. You admit reality, admit defeat, but try to do something about it. Our you can do 3. Ignore it, go into denial, pretend it does not exist, then go into delusion, thinking you can make it, even though you never make it and rinse and repeat.
I hear the same replies of those delusional open source pseudo developers when I tell them, what they are doing is pathetic bullshit and will never lead them anywhere, especially when the competition is already way beyond them. They will answer "Oh we will make it", "We are doing fine, look we are popular" (pointing at their fellow cult members), "We will encourage others to do the work", "Soon it will progress" or they will just deny technical progress and claim it does not matter and "originality" and "gameplay" is all that matters, even though they are probably the worst in being original and doing good gameplay. I remember some marketing guy saying "Marketing works the following, you pick a few facts about your business that are the worst and then you advertise with them as they were the best thing" and it is exactly what the open source community is doing.
Amazingly some of the communities or project are very popular give then fact, that all they do is providing inferior products, making empty promises and provide no progress over many years. What angers me the most is, that they waste all this manpower and resources on doing bullshit projects, often having over 10 people or sometimes over a 100 people working on some game, for many years, even though what I managed to build with hardly any prior experience looks way better than that. What angers me even more is, that they do not even care to have a good user experience, like a nice looking game with up to date graphics and mechanics and instead keep playing something on the technological level of like two decades ago.
It is hard for me to understand this, why would anyone intentionally chose inferior games to play, but I noticed that in the gaming community there are a lot of goon cults, who worship a certain game or company, praise it as their god and ignore the outside world and the open source gaming community is one of the worst offenders in that regard. They probably are not even what they are because they want to advocate for open source, but they are remnants of an older goon cult that originated from the commercial game that was open sourced and now those goons try to resurrect their god from the past and they want to worship (play) it until eternity, because everything else would be heresy, because their game was the best game that ever existed and there can not exist a game next to it, everything else would be heresy.
A common theme amongst cults is that they are in their own kind of reality bubble and they refuse to accept the real objective reality outside, but the worst part is probably that they try to recruit normal sane people into their cults aka their reality bubble preventing real progress in reality. It seems almost absurd to me, that I have to think so much about stupid video games, because those retards are trying to destroy even video gaming. It is like they hate fun and they try to prevent everyone from having fun as much as possible, reality is already shit and not fun and they don't seem to be satisfied with that, they try to destroy any forms of escapism as well, so there is no where to go where you can escape from reality and simply have fun.
In the past I thought the open source gaming community is at least good for something, but it seems they are good for nothing, except a few projects maybe, it would probably be more productive to just destroy all of it and start from scratch. Even worse is that they even seem to waste my time, by promising me to at least play my game, if I help them compile it or fix the supposed problems they have in running it, or implement features just for them and if I fulfill all their demands, wasted countless hours of my time, instead of simply playing with me, they just leave. It seems not good enough for them to waste their time, they also try to waste my time, even though I'm not in their cult.
It follows the same pattern as their cult, they make promises and then never fulfill them, then make more promises, then not fulfill them as well and so on. They are like "If you do this and that, we will contribute to your game or we will play it", then I do what they demand and they never keep their promises, like never ever. If I would talk to them they would reply like "Oh that is because you are not popular, because you are not nice" but that is all bullshit, since when I worked with other developers or people from the real world, not from such a goon cult they often instantly delivered or kept their promises, since it is no big deal.
Now I know that this is a symptom of narcissism, because the narcissist thinks he is the greatest and he is doing you a favor, even though he is not doing a favor for real and you are doing him favors all the time, but the narcissist cannot see that, in his world he is always the greatest even though he is not. I think cults are just a symptom of great narcissism, they often have a very narcissistic leader that is very delusional, so much that he really believes his own lies and at the same time so confident with it, that hardly any of their followers can see through it. Another of my observations about narcissistic cult leaders is that they are often incompetent and hardly ever do anything, yet still think they are doing it all and are entitled to everything, but a real expert on the field on the outside will easily identify him as the bullshit artist he is.
Narcissism is possibly the most destructive force in our world now and sadly are becoming the most destructive force in the virtual world as well.
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