Star Citizen nears $6 million in final hours

The siren song of space has called a record-breaking $5.97 million worth of pledges to Star Citizen, the PC-exclusive creation of Wing Commander creator Chris Roberts. The funding campaign, which runs both on Kickstarter and on the game's site, has drawn more than 85,000 backers and ends at 9 a.m. PST.

The last stretch goal for $6 million promises launch with "100 systems, a full orchestral score and a free copy of the first Squadron 42 mission disk, Behind Enemy Lines" (we hope they actually send it out on a compact disc). Squadron 42 is the game's Wing-Commander-ish mode which enlists players in a linear campaign fighting on the cosmic frontier.

It's definitely one of the most ambitious crowdfunded games we've seen--its figures right now put it clean past Project Eternity's previous game record of $4 million--and the raised cash will also be used to attract more traditional investors. Star Citizen is currently planned for release in 2014 with a beta beginning sometime next year.

I got a BA in journalism from Central Michigan University - though the best education I received there was from CM Life, its student-run newspaper. Long before that, I started pursuing my degree in video games by bugging my older brother to let me play Zelda on the Super Nintendo. I've previously been a news intern for GameSpot, a news writer for CVG, and now I'm a staff writer here at GamesRadar.