Until lately I have been taking a peek at this game now and then, seeing how it was doing and what features were being introduced. The devs never really inspired much confidence in me but I thoroughly appreciate their enthusiasm. Yet, the more I get acquainted with their players the more I feel this urge to wish them the worst.
The idea of asking the community to white-knight the game around the internet was debatable at best, but couldn't they at least send the smart guys over here?
The prefrontal cortex is the part of the brain that basically tells you "it may sound like a good idea now, but it actually isn't". This part of the brain can take up to 25 years to fully develop and it is one of the reasons why teenagers embark into reckless activities that should be obviously avoided by any adult.
Some people here have been bring up IQ scores and parents culpability as the cause for this, and while it is not completely wrong, ignoring the fact that kids should be treated differently isn't going to solve anything. You can't expect to have gambling, alcohol or drugs handed freely to under-age kids because they cause addiction even in adults, whose prefrontal cortex is fully developed.
We make the mistake of thinking that the brain is just a tool we use to take decisions but in truth the brain is all we are. Every though comes from a chemical reaction in it. If teenagers don't have the tools to deal with "gambling" as adults have, you can't blame them.
If a friend of yours started suffering from epileptic seizures and the authorities would take away his driving licence, the normal reaction of a human being is to think "It's right, he should not be allowed to drive because he might be a danger to others, but I am sorry for him", You don't feel satisfaction if he lost his licence because of a problem inside his brain.
I am one of those players who know jack about what is cutting edge, but my humble opinion is that I wouldn't worry about technology creep for this game.
CU is not trying to draw the attention of players who play what's better looking or cutting edge. CSE are trying to fit a niche that at the present moment is under-represented, and that's putting it mildly. Even if another developer would start on a game that would have physical projectiles, collisions, thousand-player battles, discord integration and whatever other more or less innovative feature I am missing, they would have to develop a game in record time to release before CU.
I know I personally care very little about the looks of a game, graphic quality and level of detail is awe-inspiring in the first 2 hours of play, then what matters is having fun. I remember this argument from the days of Age of Conan release. Damn those tits sure looked good! but I still couldn't keep playing the game.
The conversation part is intriguing, I wonder though what kind of benefits we get from chosing one path or antoher. I hope that players will be free to chose the dialogue option that fits their character's lore, instead of feeling compelled to look on some external database to get the "best reward".
Is it really a good idea to go from investors who expect a return on their investment to investors who are emotionally involved in the game?
Asking the players to "become" the publisher is essentially another form of investing: once you accept their money they can make requests. Whether one calls it investors or publishers the matter is that these individuals would have a personal stake in the success of the enterprise; often what is best for a game economically is not what is best for the whales and these "investors" would be no one but the whales.
We replace pressure on the devs to make as much money as possible with pressure to make the game more enjoyable for the whales, who at that point are to be considered partners.
I won't argue about what's best for CoE because I admit ignorance on the subject, but if we generalize as see what's best for games in general, I doubt this would be a good road to take.