Additional Evidence That Giant Spacekat is a Scam Artist
It’s been almost four weeks since I posted my first article about Giant Spacekat failing to update every platform it has outside of Twitter (including its own website), and the response from the community online has been much bigger than I ever could’ve expected. The users of Medium could not have been nicer and I’m thankful for everyone who pushed to spread awareness of it on Reddit and Twitter. You guys have helped the backers a lot, and I definitely appreciate it.
Giant Spacekat Studios has been trying to avoid discussing us since the PR Disaster they had back in early July, and its head, Brianna Wu, has used her clout to have several people who tried to bring it up suspended on Twitter. It’s very clear she doesn’t want us talking about it.
In response to the last two articles I put up, several other Medium users posted in response and brought a ton of new information about Giant Spacekat with them. This new info paints Giant Spacekat in a much worse light than even I expected, and it needs to be shared. I can safely say that if I had known about these back in 2014, odds are good I never would have backed Giant Spacekat’s Kickstarter. These new bits of information show Giant Spacekat Studios as either incompetent or completely apathetic towards obligations, and show that any concerns we had over their failure to deliver on their Kickstarter promises were justified.
1. Special Edition Stream Information and Planned Excuses
This little tidbit comes from Medium user Ren, with additional information from Medium user GethN7, who I understand had covered Giant Spacekat for quite a while. Ren shared with me a video rip of the Giant Spacekat Livestream of Revolution 60’s Special Edition:
The video itself is interesting for many reasons. Not only does it include the first actual footage we’ve seen of the new game update, but it also features coverage of the stream chat. The game itself looks like the original Revolution 60 with some incremental updates, but features a UI update.
The Audio in the stream constantly is suffering crackling and problems however (especially bad around the 8:00 mark), which Brianna Wu chalked up to something that she thought had been fixed. This in spite of the game being “done” for over a year now.
The most interesting things, however, happen in the chat. When fullscreened, the video chat is still legible.
A user named “Goobergator” joins and at around 10:40 claims they are going to rape Brianna Wu’s dead dog — and yet, despite this, is neither kicked from the channel or banned from the chat. Instead, Brianna Wu uses this as an opportunity to say “Gamergate everyone,” and continues with the stream despite this individual being in the channel and openly disruptive.
There is also the user “lp_senpai,” who appears to be an irate backer wanting to know why in the hell the game has taken so long. At around 12:10 he demands to know what the holdup has been and why Giant Spacekat hasn’t delivered. Interestingly, the biggest response comes from the “Goobergator” account, who seems to go out of their way to marginalize this user, repeatedly interacting with this user in an attempt to provoke them.
It’s only after 19:30 (or roughly nine minutes of the pair squabbling) that both users are gagged.
So despite openly trolling the Twitch Chat, these users were allowed to do so with no intervention from Spacekatgal’s Twitch mods for almost nine minutes. Conversely, at 20:20, you can see Medium user and long-time critic of Brianna Wu, GethN7, post a comment in which he says he likes what he’s seen from the game and is looking forward to it.
He is banned instantly.
All it took was one post for Spacekatgal to immediately have him banned from the chat, so why was this not done for the obvious troll who was allowed to disrupt things for nine minutes? I think the answer should be very clear, and all you need to do is look at Spacekatgal’s Twitter:
Because Brianna Wu intended to use them to explain why the game is late, exactly like she later did on the Kickstarter page.
2. Giant Spacekat Studios is Falling Apart
Several Medium posters shared several new bits of information with me over the last few weeks, the first of which is that Revolution 60 is once more available for IOS, and has been since March. You can find it on the iTunes app store under the title “Revolution 60 Full,” but it’s the original game, launched back in August of 2014. It’s odd because of how much song and dance Giant Spacekat was making about the special edition, but over this last week, a Medium user who has asked for anonymity shared with me something that suggests that Giant Spacekat Studios is in worse shape than I thought.
Amanda Warner was one of Giant Spacekat’s most veteran employees, having been there since the company’s creation (she’s often listed as a co-founder, Manager, and project lead). As of May, she has apparently left Giant Spacekat Studios, or so she says her Linkedin page! User Jane Doe was nice enough to point out something I had missed: That this is also the last time Brianna Wu had made any indication that the game was ready to ship.
Amanda was more than just a project lead — she was a main animator and a serious component of GSX as a whole, with multiple appearances in the credits of Revolution 60 alone. She also was instrumental to Giant Spacekat’s only other known project, a puzzle game in production called Cupcake Crisis. At this point, almost every single one of Giant Spacekat’s employees, except for Brianna Wu herself and her husband, Frank Wu, have left the company entirely, painting a grim picture for Brianna Wu even being able to get this project done at all given how the last stream went.
3. The Non-Existent Twitter Manager
This was brought to my attention by Medium user Tim Reah, and again by user Ryb10381, and was covered in-depth by user InformUs, who was also nice enough to share their information on the matter. The short version:
Brianna Wu (Spacekatgal) claims her sizable Patreon budget goes towards the hiring and payment of a “Twitter Manager” that screens her Tweets for harassment. This screener is known as Natalie O’Brien and has been mentioned repeatedly by Spacekatgal in articles and during her speaking engagements.
There’s only one problem: it’s doubtful she even exists.
The @GSXOffice Twitter, which, as I mentioned in my last article, has been completely inoperative since last year, is the one she supposedly uses. The thing is, there has not been a single employee of Giant Spacekat Studios who has been able to confirm this employee’s existence, and everyone who currently has had any conversation with O’Brien has done so via Email.
O’Brien lacks a LinkedIn page (which every single other member of GSX has), and has no social media presence beyond the inoperative @GSXOffice account. Emma Clarkson, a contractor who did minor work for GSX at one point (and who thus far is the only thing resembling an employee of the company that has agreed to talk to us) similarly was unable to confirm Natalie’s existence (she was originally listed as a former employee via another Medium user; she was nice enough to correct this — many thanks!). Similarly, Natalie’s entry on Giant Spacekat’s official website lists her as “Administrator” and has no information listed.
As helpfully brought up with a graph by Medium user Jonathan A, Brianna Wu makes literally hundreds of posts on Twitter every week, further indicating that Natalie O’Brien does not exist. During InformUs’ attempt to gain answers about Natalie O’Brien, Brianna Wu responded with intense hostility, accusing InformUs of being a Gamergate supporter, and, alarmingly, demanding InformUs’ personal information!
The information that we’re seeing indicates that Giant Spacekat Studios is insanely mismanaged and shows us that they are extremely unlikely to deliver on their repeated promises made across various platforms.
The ongoing problems with Giant Spacekat Studios bring home that a personal friend of Brianna Wu’s, Kiva Bay, similarly ran what is now known to be a Kickstarter scam and took the money and ran. Indeed, Brianna Wu was one of the people who tried to get people to donate to this scam.
We must hold Giant Spacekat Studios to account for its failure to deliver, and I encourage all other backers who are willing and able to report the company to Kickstarter for its failure to deliver on its promises if it does not release by August 31st, which it increasingly looks like it will not.