It occurs to me that Star Citizen is using a new business model. Star Citizen is very profitable, without selling a product. It is a continuous alpha, for years, and no release date in sight. This doesn't prevent them from making hundreds of millions in revenue anyway.
In the old days, you bought a CD (or even a floppy) with the game on it. The game was finished, came with a manual, and was complete. Then we started doing everything online, so that companies could release something that wasn't finished, and then update it later online. This got progressively more common, so that now, games are released in beta shape as a matter of course.
But Star Citizen has taken it one step further. They haven't even released something like a beta. They're still in alpha, still changing the game, still developing it, while they are also selling access to whatever is running at the moment. They are free to change the game at any time, free to shut it down at any time, free to completely stop and just keep the money. Their website makes it clear that donating to the development is not a guarantee of receiving a finished product.
I think this is what has caused so much controversy. The visuals look great, the ships are cool, but there is no game. Just eternal development. And many people apparently don't like this new business model.
2021: 44 years on the Net.