The Future of Godus

The last few days have seen a flurry of stories in regards to Peter Molyneux’s latest god game Godus.  Firstly, John Walker of Rock, Paper, Shotgun wrote a piece looking at the fractured state of the game and how it seems unlikely that it will ever meets its lofty Kickstarter goals. Eurogamer meanwhile have today published an article that contains an interview with the Curiosity winner Bryan Henderson detailing his lack of involvement with the studio behind Godus.

As Rock, Paper, Shotgun pointed out, the current development of Godus has slowed dramatically to the point that only a handful of staff are currently working on the title. The rest of 22cans employees have instead began work on new game The Trail. The investigation by Walker shows that those working on the game funded by Kickstarter appear to be unsure exactly whether the game will even be finished. Quotes from the recently appointed lead designer Konrad Naszynski suggest that the team may never be able to implement many of the promised features and that serious question marks remain over whether multiplayer will ever make it into the game. The situation is made all the worse by the fact that Molyneux claimed that these features would be in Godus when he asked for funding through Kickstarter.

On the other hand, 22cans and Molyneux in particular appear to have left the Curiosity winner Bryan Henderson completely in the dark. The now 21-year-old was the last person to tap away in the ‘game’ and was then promised a “life-changing” prize that eventually amounted to a percentage of the sales of Godus and the ability to take on the role of god of gods and influence how everyone else would play the title. However, his recent interview with Eurogamer makes it clear that apart from some brief messages immediately after he won and an uncomfortable trip to the developers studio where he was ignored by the vast majority of staff, that there has been very little contact between 22cans and Bryan.

According to Molyneux, in a conversation with Eurogamer, he acknowledges that he and his development team have acted unprofessionally towards Bryan. He promised to get back in touch with the winner again in the near future and also explained that his god of gods role cannot be created until after multiplayer has been implemented, as it depends on the online mode to work. That puts in doubt whether Bryan will ever get his prize and if he will ever get his percentage of sales. Especially considering that it has been 26 months since Godus entered early access and the multiplayer mode is still not working.

Speaking to Eurogamer, Molyneux also apologized several times. He professed regret both for the state of the game and its delayed development in addition to the treatment of Bryan Henderson. He also went on to make several claims about exactly what 22cans are currently working on, in apparent contradiction with statements made in a video that had also been recorded and released today. These contradictory claims have done nothing to ease the confusion about exactly how development of Godus is proceeding and whether it will ever be finished with all of its stated features implemented.

All of this comes directly back to Peter Molyneux and his reputation of making wild claims and then backtracking spectacularly. It has happened with almost every single release he has been responsible for in the past 15 years and when combined with the situation that Godus is in along with the handling of Bryan Henderson, it may finally be time to stop listening to Peter Molyneux. His outlandish concepts consistently fail to be delivered, leaving fans feeling that the developer is an out and out liar, so no longer giving any credence to his announcements in the future might be the best idea.