Code Hero creator Alex Peake says he's working to bring the website back online and get a new alpha version ready for release.
Code Hero, the troubled Kickstarter project that promised to teach players how to make games, appears to be in trouble again. Problems first came to light in December 2012 when he admitted that the $170,000 raised - well over the $100,000 goal - wasn't enough to get the job done. Backers began to worry that Peake had taken their money and abandoned the project, but he was able to smooth the waters with a statement apologizing for his absence and promising better communication in the future. An alpha version of the game was released and Peake posted multiple Kickstarter updates in February 2013 and then one in March. But now it appears that trouble has returned.
The Primer Labs website, the home of Code Hero, went offline a couple of days ago, and users have been reporting that the Code Hero alpha is no longer accepting logins, although one person claimed earlier today that the "guest mode" is still functioning. Comments on the Code Hero Kickstarter page haven't been flowing as fast and furious as they did in December but they seem more universally critical: Dustin Deckard, who spearheaded the December backlash, noted that Peake "has been totally MIA (hiding?), not returning calls, emails, comments, Kickstarter messages, Twitter, or even official letters via post," while another commenter wrote that the project "is clearly a scam at this point."
Peake has thus far not responded to emailed inquiries but he did post three messages on Kickstarter earlier this evening, again apologizing for the lack of communication. "We're working to get the site back online as soon as possible and a new alpha release with it," he wrote. "We're also securing additional developers and funding to fulfill shirt rewards and accelerate development. The first beta will be released September 1st and we'll make a full announcement and Q&A on the site when we get it back online."
Since that message was posted, the primerlabs.com website has returned, although only with a default site page.
UPDATE: In an email sent early this morning, Peake reiterated yesterday's Kickstarter update, saying that the site went down because of a "mixup" and that when it comes back, the current Code Hero alpha will begin working again. He also committed to a beta release on Sept. 1, "so schools can use it in classes."
"I understand people are frustrated by the lack of communication," he wrote. "We'll be back online with a clarifying announcement and release of the roadmap ahead to beta."