The Metro Exodus PR Nightmare Continues

The saga from Metro Exodus' exclusivity on the Epic Games Store continued over the weekend, with the developer and publisher struggling to contain the PR fallout. The latest pile atop the smouldering nightmare of messaging: a remark from a 4A Games developer warning that any boycotts against the PC version of Exodus could result in future iterations not launching on the PC at all.

The post from the supposed 4A developer was in Russian on Gameru.net, under the account "scynet". (The validity of the account was later confirmed in a follow-up statement by Exodus publisher Deep Silver, who remarked that they were a "member of the 4A Games development team".)

An automated translation of the post notes that while some of the backlash is understandable: Exodus's withdrawal from Steam was ambiguous and sudden, so a degree of whiplash from that is to be expected. But the remainder of the post questions whether if some of the criticism against Exodus is genuine, and not the byproduct of a small segment of users airing criticism without considering the time and effort from the developers.

It then contained this line which circulated far and wide:

To this I can answer that in a pinch, if at all all the PC players announce a boycott of the Metro, then the next Metro, if it does, is definitely not on the PC.

Again, it's worth stressing that this isn't an official translation. But the intent wasn't hard to miss, and inevitably the backlash was instant. Gamers and gamer communities generally don't take demands well. And given that much of the Exodus debate has pitched the Epic Games Store, and Deep Silver/Koch Media's decision, as anti-consumer at worst and inadequate at best, social media treated the response like blackmail.

Given the torrent of backlash that Exodus and its publishers were already getting from the Epic/Steam decision, this was an unwelcome addition to the fire. Deep Silver posted a statement through the official Metro Exodus Twitter account - although it wasn't clear initially that Deep Silver were the authors - saying that the comments "do reflect the hurt and disappointment of a passionate individual" but were not reflective of the publisher or 4A Games on future Metro titles.

The recent decision to move Metro Exodus from Steam to the Epic Game Store was made by Koch Media / Deep Silver alone.

The recent comments made by a member of the 4A Games development team do not reflect Deep Silver’s or 4A Games’ view on the future of the franchise. They do reflect the hurt and disappointment of a passionate individual who has seen what was previously nothing but positive goodwill towards his work turn to controversy due to a business decision he had no control over. We respectfully ask that any and all valid feedback over this decision is directed at Koch Media / Deep Silver, and not the developers at 4A Games.

The future release strategy of the Metro series lies with Koch Media / Deep Silver. Our decision to partner with Epic Games was based on the goal of investing in the future of the series and our development partner at 4A Games. We have every intention of continuing this franchise, and a PC version will always be at the heart of our plans.

With the publisher has owned the statement to a degree - rather than simply ignoring it, or denying it and the validity of the account - I'm reminded a little of the argument that cropped up around Red Dead Redemption 2 after Kotaku reported on the working conditions within Rockstar Games. Those conditions included mandatory overtime at Rockstar's Lincoln studio, with many other staffers working a minimum of 55 to 60 hour weeks over six days.

Rockstar QA Studio With Hardest Crunch Told Today That Supposed Mandatory Overtime Is Optional

Rockstar Lincoln, a UK-based studio that has been handling a lot of the quality assurance testing for Red Dead Redemption 2, is swearing off an approach that many employees say they had interpreted as mandatory overtime.

Read more

Inside Rockstar Games' Culture Of Crunch

In the final year of development on Red Dead Redemption 2, the upcoming Western game, the top directors decided to add black bars to the top and bottom of every non-interactive cutscene in hopes of making those scenes feel more cinematic, like an old-school cowboy film. Everyone agreed it was the right creative move, but there was a catch: It would add weeks of work to many people’s schedules.

Read more

The public response to the crunch for Red Dead Redemption 2 elicited genuine confusion: People didn't want to support unsustainable working conditions, but the likely fallout from a successful boycott would only hurt the developers on the ground floor most.

And part of that dilemma through in the response from the Exodus developer. It's highly personal. It's asking why gamers are punishing people like him for a decision that was out of their control. But there's that, and then there's challenging gamers' interest in Metro Exodus at all, and once any part of the latter hit the internet the response was always going to be a nightmare.

For a game that was pretty enjoyable from its Gamescom build, it's unfortunate to see a game embroiled in controversy over everything but the game itself. And the whole PR debacle has come before anyone has even had the opportunity to get hands on with final code, with reviewers expected to receive builds over the next fortnight. Hopefully, for 4A Games' sake, Exodus's gameplay will have far fewer bumps than the PR messaging.


Comments

    I'm sad that such a good looking game is embroiled in all this chaos, but it should be noted this is an issue that Deep Silver dug itself into.

    Whilst it is easy to understand why Deep Silver took the decisions it did, Deep Silver (and others who want to try these sorts of shenanigans) that what on paper is good for your business, might not necessarily align with your customer base. Any good sales person knows that it isn't just the product you are selling, the experience from stop to go that makes up your product. Having the best product in the world, but selling out of store of dubious security and little features is akin to being sold a brand new Maserati in a TAFE parking lot, its going to leave a bad taste in the mouth of plenty.

    Anyway, rant over.

      Hey I used to buy all sorts of fun stuff from a guy in the TAFE carpark! Not a Mazza, granted but quality... erm, "materials" that made my afternoon far more interesting all the same!

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          never seen a socially regressive busy body on Kotaku before

    If PC players don't buy Metro then low sales due to PC players not buying Metro on the PC will make it uneconomic to develop future iterations of the franchise for the PC. News at 11.

      I see where you're coming from but I'm not sure it would make it uneconomic. Games that aren't console exclusive tend to be developed for PC first, due to higher processing and graphical capabilities, and are then dialed down for console compatibility. My money is on mediocre sales at launch on the Epic Store with several following months of steady sales at a lesser rate, and then a moderate to large windfall of sales once it's released on Steam that will spike for a short period.

        Well, it's not where I am coming from, it's the argument that the devs made.

        You can quibble with the dev's argument if you like, and I'm no expert, but I can't personally think of many loss-making PC releases sold on that platform simply as a byproduct of console game development.

        Pretty sure its a 12 month exclusive window, so you're talking about February next year. By the time it gets to Steam, it'll be on sale. I don't think anyone will care.

        At least, if I was Epic I'd be putting it on sale at that point anyway. They will have made their money from it by that point.

      That’s like burning sausages on the BBQ then saying ‘I’m never eating sausages again, they taste like charcoal’.

        But that makes no sense because no one can resist a sausage at Bunnings

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      Sweet. That's going to result in more console couch gaming. I'm not going to say 'No' to that.

      Bring it on. I love my couch.

    Maybe I'm naive but I read that not so much as a threat but as a prediction that failure of the PC launch (because of the boycott) would jeopardise future PC ports?

      you expect people on the internet to take a moment to consider what theyre reading rather than just going straight on the offensive?
      It's quite clearly a very poor translation, and it makes perfect sense that it would not be in a business's interest to develop future games for a platform it isn't making money from.

        Why is it clearly a poor translation? What parts of this do you think weren't translated properly?

        На это могу ответить, что в крайнем случае, если вообще все ПК игроки обьявят бойкот Метро, то следующее метро если и выйдет, то точно не на ПК. Лучше от этого будет или хуже, решайте сами.

          The Warlock is casting a spell, get him!!

            Is that a Kal Ort Por in there....?

            HE'S TRYING TO TELEPORT!!! STOP HIM!!!

              Man, that's a blast from the past. Reminds me of the worst words to hear when you were in a cave mining as a lowbie:

              Kal Vas Xen Flam (summon flame elemental)
              In Sanct Ylem (wall of stone across the entrance)

        But equally these companies KNOW people on the internet will jump on the offensive as a first reaction

      Reads more like a threat to me. That said, it's hard to judge because it's such a short message. So I guess it's possible it wasn't meant to sound like "Well if you don't play how we want to we'll take our bat and ball and go home".

      I've got to say when a developer, any developer starts pulling shit that you don't support then they don't deserve your support. So they won't release another Metro game on PC? So be it.

        No sales = no money = no new games.

          I can live with that. There are plenty of companies making games that don't treat the customers like assholes.

      It's not a port if it's developed specifically for a platform.

      It's a port if it's developed for something totally different and have to be reprogrammed for a different platform.

      It's not that complicated.

    They must have realised that Epic exclusivity would cost some sales?

      Maybe Epic oversold their demographics a little, or no-one thought beyond hte numbers. "We have 200 million users" ... they're all playing Fortnite, so they may not be all that interested in an immersive, single player, atmospheric horror FPS... but "Yes, we have 200 million users."

      There was clearly someone representing either Epic or Koch Media that didn't make that connection.

        what it means is that epic must have thrown them a massive imperial fuck tonne of money at deep silver to do this. more than enough to cover the immediate loss of sales from people who would not use the epic store. But what is really stupid is the "threat" of not making metro on PC anymore because Metro is actually a bigger seller on PC than consoles, this is more than cutting off your nose to spite your face, this cutting of your lungs to spite your brain

        I myself refuse to use the windows store and and dont use the epic store because i dont play fortnight so i will be waiting the year for the metro to come to steam (because thats where Metro and Last Light are)

          I was planning to get it on Steam, but then the Epic exclusivity got announced. So I was considering getting it on PS4, but now? I'll wait. My only incentive for buying games at launch is to avoid spoilers... I have yet to see a Metro game sufficiently publicised to warrant needing to actively dodge spoilers, so... I'll just wait.

          I share your sentiment regarding the MS store, but in this case it's only selling the Xbox version - if you want it on PC, then (to my knowledge) you have no choice but to go through Epic.

          Listen to yourselves Jebus H Crisp. “I’m not playing this game because one corporation over another corporation has the game! Waaaa!”

          I've heard from a couple places that the publisher was given a 10 million dollar up front fee? Thought this was common knowledge by now or have I had a weird dream somewhere?

          That's where my head went along with I would like the money from that exclusive deal

          I have the Epic launcher installed, only to get the free games they're giving away every fortnight for a year. Some are less good than others, but all are free, so the price is right.

          Personally, I've never played the Metro games anyway, so have little incentive to start now. My gripe is more the locking down of the game in the way they have. It doesn't help competition. There are better ways for Epic to make themselves known than this - they're already undercutting Steam, so how about simply charging less for the game?

          I get the point behind exclusives, but locking it for a year? The reported $10m fee isn't going to undo the negative press this has generated.

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    Deep Silver have cocked this all up really badly, not that the devs comment helped at all.

    I think they've grown too complacent, in the publishing space. Steam is almost single-handedly responsible for cultivating a world where publishers have the luxury of considering Steam-based revenues to be the 'bare minimum', from which they can only go up.

    It's like they've forgotten that not so long ago, consumers were gleefully and rampantly taking another, even worse, option. Piracy still exists. It is still an option. The only reason it's not a more popular option is because of the conveniences and value Steam offered for paying. Steam is not their 'minimum' revenue. Piracy is.

    But if publishers strive to take away the value consumer get for their money by using a shitty storefront that has no benefits to the consumer... when that value disappears, so does the desire to pay for it.

      One thing I'm curious about is the type of DRM and "always on" that is built into the Epic platform and games. I hate that Steam wants to be active all the time and much prefer a solution like GOG where I can download the game from their site and just play it. If Epic is closer in nature to GOG then Steam I'd actually consider that a benefit.

        To be fair, Steam is pretty easily put in offline mode... And in any case I've personally seen only games that require online connectivity will require Steam to also be online, and blaming Steam for that would be ridiculous.

        Epic is not even close to being like GOG in the manner you speak of, it's quite simply just another Steam.

        GOG is a friggin' unicorn in the space, and I for one am glad they're doing as well as they are.

          GOG shows they can provide a better store that attracts loyal customers without paying crap tons of money for an exclusive deal

            Enh... I dunno about 'better'. Any time GOG have a sale, their site shits the bed any time I try to buy anything, usually until several days into the sale and only accessible from certain browsers (toss a coin between desktop Firefox/Chrome, and nothing mobile is even in the running). I guess you could say that their curation, pricing, and customer reviews are better? The buy/play experience through Galaxy is a tad disjointed compared to Steam.

            But yeah... they're at the very least competitive. Without necessarily needing to buy up exclusivity agreements. (Although they have certainly done this, too... it's just usually backfired.)

      Well said.

      Picture a game that's got a $60 price tag, a fairly standard price for AAA games. To make a physical copy of that game is something like $15, give or take. Work with me. They sell it to the retailer for $30, who sells it to the consumer for $60. The developer has made $15 out of it, the retailer $30.

      With Steam, you no longer have that initial production cost, nor do you have the final retailer markup. Not in the same way anyhow. So, they sell for $60 on Steam, and get hit with the 30% fee. That's $18.

      They're still making $42, when previously they'd be making $15. Very basic numbers, there would have been distribution costs and all sorts of things I haven't accounted for, but the net result is the same.

      They're profits on the final sale went up considerably. Along the way, basic practices all but got rid of piracy. Convenience played a big role in that, as did multiplayer aspects.

      If they want to step away from that, the risk is losing a bigger profit margin. Nobody has remotely close to the market share of Steam, and if you lose that platform you risk needing to have stock on store shelves again. Which means less profit.

      In the end they're only hurting themselves.

        the way i can put it is scene from the movementarians episode of the simpsons where Smithers is explaining to Mr Burns that due to all the loopholes and such he only pays $5 dollar tax a year to which Burns replys "your right, im getting screwed!"

          Ha!

          What gets me is the argument that if players protest this decision, the backlash will be no PC version next time. Which is a bluff in my opinion, no studio is stupid enough to cut out a third of their retail base.

          Especially when the hard work is all done by the engine, and the localisation for each of the three main systems is relatively trivial. Its a hell of a threat, just not sure it will have the intended effect.

          They lose sales now, and guarantee they lose sales next time. Gamers wont forget. But yeah, it does come across as Burns feeling he's still getting screwed...

        Except the physical product cost is nowhere near $15. It literally costs cents to make a DVD when you're talking mass quantities. Sure there are distribution (shipping costs) and costs to print the box and manual, but they're actually pretty low too.

        But otherwise you're pretty much right. I don't think losing Steam as a platform is as big a deal considering there are a bunch of alternatives with Uplay, Origin, Battle.net, GoG and so on.

          No, it costs up near $15, I'm sure of that. Will be a margin of error, but the cost was shown years ago (was for a PS3 game, so disc, cover art, inserts, case) to be $12-$13. Prices would have been very stable by that point, and would only have gone up due to increasing labour costs around the world.

          What I don't remember is if that included distribution costs. I assume it does for the reasons you state, but it would be only to the border control. There would be additional transport costs to get it from customs to the retailer.

          That $12 cost is something I've always remembered. I don't think a 25% increase to that is unreasonable given it was a cost from ~2010. If anything, its on the low side. Four points where the value goes up. Manufacturer --> shipping --> distribution --> retail. All of those have gone up over that time period.

          The main point though was those are no longer a cost they need to pay, once they're using a digital platform. So its a saving to them, and hence means they make more money. Why risk that?

            It's definitely not that expensive or they wouldn't be able to sell physical games for $6.99.

            I read an article some years back about the cost to make a DVD. It's less than $1. You can get relatively small batches (1000) professionally duplicated for about 50c a disc. Similarly, printing the boxes and inserts is quite cheap, again we're talking a dollar or less.

            I should clarify that's the physical cost to create the item. Not the "creative" cost like paying an artist to design box art, and a graphic designer and a writer and so on. That cost is variable depending on the game and how much effort they put into the art/manual. And the more copies you sell the lower that cost becomes *per game*. It should also be noted, that the boxart and manual often simply reflects content that's created for online consumption or advertising too. So that's effectively lowering the cost as well as it's being re-purposed.

            As for the transport costs, that's probably a higher % than we think. Especially with the rise in fuel prices. However, I'm not sure whether those costs are an issue for the publisher so much as the retailer. I'd think they would contribute to the portion of retail markup.

              There are licensing fees to the platform as well (Sony/Xbox/etc), which aren't cheap, plus other rights licensing that could be on a per copy basis. Not sure on that one.

              The platform royalties are charged on a manufacturing basis, so if they make 1000 copies, they pay for those 1000 copies whether they sell them or not. Best I can find on that is $7 per copy from 2010. So even at $4 to make the case/cover/etc that's up to $11 from nearly a decade ago. See where I'm coming from?

              Those copies they sell for $7 either don't have those fees, or more likely are after the game has been out so long they just want to get whatever they can squeeze out of the existing stock. $7 being better than it just sitting there gather dust.

              Good discussion by the way.

                Well we're talking specifically about PC games here not PS4/Xbox since Epic is distributing PC games (well at least Metro is a PC game). So not sure how licensing fees matter in that case. As far as I know Microsoft don't charge a licensing fee for a PC game, making the cost for physical production just a few bucks.

                side note: I did read an old article about licensing fees for consoles that state they vary from $3-10 per unit. It was however, from 2006 so god knows how accurate it is now.

    I mean, once again, shareholders fucking ruining a game. Ridiculous.

      I wonder about that in this case. Deep Silver is a private subsidiary of Koch Media, which is itself a private subsidiary of THQ Nordic AB, a publicly traded company. There's a bit of a three-step separation between public shareholders and Deep Silver, since they have limited influence over the parent board, which has limited influence over the subsidiary board, and ditto again down to Deep Silver.

      Not saying it didn't happen, just makes me wonder if that was really the problem here, or if it was caused by plain simple profit-chasing.

    I'm not going to boycott them, I'll be buying it when it released on steam. The only time I use the Epic store is to pick up a free game that ill most likely never play.

    Amazing. WM gamers always feel so entitled. Good on the dev’s if they sh-t can PC. No devs should give in to the toxic gamer cult.

      Anyone know what WM in this comment means? I'm not up on the latest internet short hand you wacky kids use these days :D

      Any time someone criticises the entitled way gamers carry on, they get downvoted.

        People get downvoted for a bunch of reasons. I personally downvote when someone drops a troll-ish comment. Like "gamers are so entitled". Now if they'd backed that up with something meaningful, like an argument why and examples I wouldn't downvote. But as it stands it just looks like trolling so -1.

        That's because some turnip always pops up and calls entitlement just because people are annoyed, justified or not.

    Proving they're more trouble than they're worth at every opportunity seems to be a point of personal pride for the PC community.

      Meanwhile, one of the console community's claims to fame is verbal abuse and harassment whenever you play a game online...

      Glass houses, chief.

        To be fair that's pretty much all online communities of note.

          Absolutely true... But the moment you start talking about Xbox Live its all, "Trolls! Harassment! Toxicity!"

          Online console environments have generally always been much more 'on' as well, in the sense of more people having and actually using microphones, etc.

        Are you concerned that you have assumed i’m part of the console community with no evidence to suggest as such?

          Not particularly, I actually expect if you really cared you'd have been quite hostile about the whole thing.

    Some edits for clarity:

    if [] all the PC players announce a boycott of the Metro, then the next Metro, if it does, is definitely not on the PC

    all the PC players

    all

    I mean, "no shit" comes to mind. Does no one else get the feeling the developer chose this deliberately, to stress his/her opinion that the backlash is coming from (as per usual) a vocal minority?

    Obviously not all players are going to boycott the PC version. I imagine even the vast majority of PC players interested in the game don't give a rat's arse if the game is switching launcher, providing their pre-orders are being honoured (which they are).

      The thing is, that's not the only outcome. If every PC player boycotted Metro, they could decide not to release the next one on PC (although this would kill the franchise since PC makes up 85%+ of sales), or they could address the problem people have in their core market and try to fix that instead.

      The fact he framed it as only one without even acknowledging the other is why his statement was taken so badly, because it essentially communicated that they'd rather pull the game than address fan concerns. Whether that was his intention or not, it was pretty terrible messaging/optics.

        Just like the "do you not have phones" from Blizzard. It shows the developer is not actually understanding why the players are complaining.

          At least with Blizzard they weren't actively trying to destroy the franchise. It was just a really badly handled announcement that in other circumstances would have been received far more positively. Like, if they teased Diablo 4 straight after...

          I don't think this Epic/Metro issue would ever go down well. The bait and switch they pulled would leave a dirty taste in most gamers mouths.

            That's true to an extent. There are however a lot of people who only really look at a game after it's on sale. So there is always going to be some percentage of the market who will be completely unaware that it looked like it was going to be on Steam then at the last minute switched to epic. They'll just go to buy it in a couple months time and shrug and say "huh it's on the epic store".

            I suspect that percentage will actually be higher than the outraged one.

            ps: I don't like what they did. Feels pretty lousy to me to use the steam platform for months to promote the game then drop it just before release. And I hate platform exclusives no matter what.

              Time will tell. Launch sales are generally where the profit is though, and for many the issue is going to leave a bad taste long enough they wont buy in that window.

              If they're buying it later, will they look on their existing platforms, not see it, then download Epic? I'm not sure. Epic will need more games to encourage people to adopt it for that to be a solid.

              I have a feeling that for a lot of people in that situation, they'll just be looking on their existing platforms of Steam, GoG, etc, not see it, and forget about it. Until it pops up this time next year. They wont be reminded about it because they wont be looking at Epic.

              I don't care either way, its not a series I've ever played. I just feel Epic have gone about this so badly that it cant do anything but hurt the brand they're trying to build. They'll come out the other side, no doubt, but at what cost?

              What other big name games will now be reluctant to sign on to them? And by extension, what separates them from the existing services that makes them worth using?

              Time will tell.

                Good point, that's when they typically gouge people the worst :)

                I guess how people look for the game will vary based on the person. Personally, I look for the game's site first then go looking at how I can buy it. I don't just wait for stuff to pop up on GoG or Steam. But I'm sure that a lot of people do just look at whats new on Steam/GoG/Whatever.

                I don't think Epic did anything wrong in this. I have no problem with them offering sweetheart deals to developers. The developers don't have to choose Epic's platform as an exclusive. I think the only ones who deserve blame in this are the Metro people for making that choice. And even then, only because they left it so late. If they'd made the call six months before release it'd be a different scenario.

    I played a Metro game once.. it was janky.
    As a PC gamer, I'm boycotting this game because I have no interest in it.
    Anyone who wants to join me, I'll be under my rock.

    Tempest in a teapot that everyone will forget come Christmas.

      God, I fucking hope this is done by Christmas... We've only just hit the second month of the year.

        We'll get reminded next February when the 12 month exclusive window is up and the game appears on Steam/GoG/Crazy Ivans Games Emporium.

    I don't need to add more noise to what everyone is saying, I agree on all fronts but I have to add something I've been thinking about.

    All of the comments I've seen on this debacle about "healthy competition", I was kind of in agreement with....
    Commenters: "oh yeah, Epic is now issuing some healthy competition"
    Me: "heck yeah, that's actually quite right, if I can buy a game on another platform cheaper, then I will...and actually, I have previously with GoG and Origin!"
    But honestly thinking about it, the competition is flawed when it's releasing exclusive or timed content, it's like having two runners on a sandy beach but one competitor says " ok hey, you have to run up the beach breathing through a straw only....and you have to push this shopping trolley...". How is it "healthy competition" when one side is cut out completely.

    Ok I know I'm regurgitating here, I'm personally not pissed that there is another competitor, I just hate the dirty tactics.

    Just release the damned game on both storefronts, heck, release it on GoG and EA even! Let the public choose what they want to pay for it on whatever fricken platform they want!

      I'm all for competition, but this isn't healthy. Its limiting, as you say.

      If their cut is lower, just release the game with a lower sticker price and let market influences do the job. $60 game, Steam hits that for 30%, so $18. As long as Koch/Deep Silver are still clearing that, the sticker price will bring buyers.

      Whats Epic's cut? 20%? 25%? Either of those means they can charge $3-$6 less, which is enough for people to use that platform. Do that, and they get market share naturally.

      Keep doing that, and they prove to the consumer they're worth using. In a positive way.

    Any backlash directed toward Epic?

      not so much in this comment section because it is meant to be about the latest issue rather than the epic exclusivity issue so it wouldn't make much sense to have backlash against epic for the posts of someone completely unrelated to them.

        Ah yeah for sure. I just mean in the sense that it was probably their idea and they must have chucked wads of cash at it.

          the rumor is 10 million i haven't seen any confirmation yet myself on this though.

    “Gamers and gamer communities generally don't take demands well”

    Lol. Or ANYTHING AT ALL. Gamers shriek with outrage any time some thing happens which could be reasonably described as ‘minor discomfort’ occurs. Would hate to see how these people behaved in an actual crisis..
    News flash, developers and publishers don’t owe you anything. Buy their games or don’t buy their games.

    If anyone actually put their money where their mouths are we wouldn’t have companies gouging everyone with shitty business practices.

    The metro exodus stuff is a non issue unless you’re prone to pedantic hair splitting. Buy it on a console, OR buy it from one of the PC delivery services. Or don’t buy it.

      "One of the PC delivery services" is the issue - did you even read about the issue or did you just want an excuse to claim people are overreacting?

        It’s not an issue. It’s a minor inconvenience. You have to download a launcher. Big fucking deal.
        Maybe valve monopolising the market isn’t healthy. Maybe a shake up needs to happen. Usually a few eggs break.

          Okay so you didn't actually read about the issue, well done.

            You can carry on the snark as much as you like, I read the article. PC gamers react predictably when anyone questions them, boo hoo.

              Childish snark? Did you even read your own comment?

              The issue is that the game was due for multiple storefronts and has been pulled for exclusivity. This isn't good for consumers. Instead of calling it "minor discomfort" and dismissing it, try to take the time to see it from the other side of the coin. You might learn how to consider other people's perspectives and understand the issue.

            Shock horror, an article can be about multiple related issues. Which it is.
            If you have nothing but childish snark to offer, go away.

      If anyone actually put their money where their mouths are we wouldn’t have companies gouging everyone with shitty business practices.

      so it's the gamers own fault they are getting fed a shit sandwich

      wonder if you will agree with the following quote "look at the way she is dressed, she was asking for trouble"???

    I don't get why people are getting so mad about it being epic store timed exclusive.

    Microsoft does it all the time doing timed exclusive and no one bats an eye since console exclusive is the worst kind of thing but having to install a launcher on PC they takes less than 2 minutes is a problem that needs to boycott?

    You guys are barking at the wrong tree here, go do something to valve to lower the publishing fee. Valve is redirecting the hate to publishers that is leaving steam by using these tactics and everyone fell for it forgetting valve is effectively charging 2x the fee compare to epic.

      the only stuff mircosoft hass been doing timed exclusives to is from first party games such as Sunset Overdrive, Halo, etc, just the same how all EA games are only available on Origin and Ubi games on Ubisoft and Bethesda games on their shitty launcher.

      Metro on the other hand is not a first party game that is run by epic, it is a third party game. People hated it and boycotted Rise of the Tomb Raider when that was thrown out as timed exclusive for the Xbone although that was announced at the same time that game was announced. this is worse because it was only announced last week, 2 weeks before it was due to be released

        I think my point is being missed. Console exclusive locks people from playing the game until 1 year later except you buy an Xbox.

        Launcher exclusive means nothing except installing another free program that takes you 2 minutes.

        Let's give it a second and process that for a bit, it literally means nothing to install another launcher.

        Now back to root of the problem as I mentioned again, Valve is intentionally pushing the blame away and taking their huge player base to attack Epic calling the move "unfair to the players". It is simply business that Koch choose Epic as their store front regardless of when the move is decided, 2 weeks before launch, 1 day before launch, a year before launch, it makes no difference. Unless you tell me installing another launcher is as bad as buying another console for exclusive, launcher exclusive on PC means nothing at all.

        People need to stop riding on hate bandwagon and just ignore the fact that the main reason Koch Media choose Epic is because they charge half the fee. Imagine 50 million dollar sales, with Steam they charge 20% which is 10 million dollar from the total sale while Epic only takes 6 million dollar from the total sale.

        That 4 million dollar can keep the developers in the studio paid and funds to develop the next game. I'm pretty sure everyone knows from all the various articles that game developers worked overtime and just get fired just because a game did not meet sales to keep them hired. The lower revenue share is good move so developers can get more from game sales.

        Unless someone tell me that I am wrong for supporting this move?

          As much as I would love to agree with you. In most cases, the developers won't see that extra cut. It will be more just to line the publishers pocket.

          If it really mattered. They could offer it on both store fronts, cheaper on Epic as they get a lower cut. Most people love to buy discounted or cheaper and they would not have suffered the backlash the community is giving them.

      WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU SAYING!!!!

      nobody forgot anything, valve can charge whatever the fuck they like and so can epic.

      valve didn't suddenly double the price buddy the price has always been the same they knew that when they started advertising the game on steam and selling pre orders thru steam. Almost nobody would have given a dead mouses last shit if they had decided to sell the game exclusively thru the epic store if they had just made that fucking decision to begin with.

        Calm down mate.

        Steam didn't double the price, Epic launched with half the price.

        Steam was the only platform to sell on PC, thus it was promoted and sold on Steam and now Epic launched and they moved over. If Epic store exist when Metro started taking preorder, it would have been sold on Epic store to begin with.

        And yes people are so swept up by the hate train and have forgotten that Steam's high revenue share is the cause of publisher leaving them.

        Metro was not the first and definitely won't be the last that will leave Steam.

        Edit:
        I love how my comments are being moderated probably because someone reported me for destroying their fanboy dream while your comment comes unmoderated.

        ;) Whoever that approves this comment

        Last edited 06/02/19 5:52 pm

          sorry i wasn't even that mad at you some other jackass was riling me up on a different section.

          um lets see... yeh we both right about steam and epic and the price thing, i understand that the launch of epic was after steam had the game, the issue is that they didn't move over to Epic because of the difference in revenue. Epic bought them out which is also fine i mean it's seedy but it would have been ok if it hadn't been on steam to begin with.

          The game should have just been added to the epic store and sold on both platforms so consumers have a choice and im only saying that absolutely in this particular case because steam already had it, in the future they can do exclusivity if they want but they can do it from the start and not screw us around.

          If the pricing structure of epic is so great and publishers want to move for the extra payday the exact inverse would be true for consumers looking for a discount not everyone obviously, but simply posting it to both stores and letting the consumer decide is the optimal choice, removing that choice with exclusivity is a shitty thing to do.

          with regards to the moderator thing nearly everything i post is set for moderation and i occasionally get a comment yeeted by the feelings police don't worry your not alone.

    Actual scynet translation.

    "I've been looking at all the buzz. My feelings are two fold. On the one side, us leaving steam is not certain, nobody has made such a bold move as of yet (as far as I'm aware). This is all new, and this means that it will cause some people to be upset. Yes, a move like this requires folks to install the Epic launcher that can cause some inconvenience to players and this all means that there will be some push back.

    On the other hand, the reaction of a certain group of players (people threatening to use torrents etc) - is hardly warranted. I get a feeling that people didn't want to play the game in the first place, but instead were just waiting for a reason to start throwing out their complaints. So we (the devs) spend years of hard work trying to make something special, but the aforementioned group of players just think our hard work isn't even worth a couple of minutes it takes to install a new launcher. Of course its their life and their right so why even bother with Metro? It seems like its a game that they have no interest in. I can only say that those people were't fans in the first place and our work isn't interesting to them, and that means that opinions of such people are of no interest to me. What is the point in me listening to their opinion?

    Let us take closer look at the situation shall we? Some people think that ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ on Exodus as well as the previously released titles that they somehow made the world a better place. "Lets put the greedy developer in their place!" these people think. Here's my answer to this - if this goes to the extreme and PC players decide to boycott Exodus, then subsequent Metro titles, if they do come out will not come out on PC. If its for better or worse, you decide for yourself. Personally I would just feel bad for the loyal fans. This won't affect how much I value the work of my friends and work colleagues. I know for sure that all these angry people who are spewing their bile online are not capable of doing even a small fraction of what we were able to achieve and will hopefully achieve in the future. And thus, they don't have a clue as to what they are talking about.

    And also, despite the fact that during development I've played and finished every single level of every game god knows how many times, I still want to play Metro. I have finished the previous games many times, even now I'm getting ready to do another full playthrough of the PC version (I'm assuming here he means Exodus), which were are now adding the finishing touches to. To me this is a tradition, I always do a full playthough of our game just before release. It lets me appreciate all the work we did. So you might be asking what is this all about? I'm remembering the Professor's words (not sure what he means here) , words that I've heard many times from him personally and from the Internet - when you make a game you have to make it for yourself first and foremost, you yourself actually have to like the game. And only now I'm starting to fully realize that no smartass is going to get to me and devalue the hard work that we have put in. There will always be those who are unsatisfied.."

      As usual a long and informative post was taken out of context with just a sentence. Such a pity for the developers voice to be misinterpreted so wrongly.

        It wasn't taken out of context, the context is there. The article notes this before it even addresses the offending part. The problem is the part people have an issue with isn't changed by the context, it's an issue in its own right.

        It's like saying "Human rights violations are serious and need to be treated with the utmost importance by sovereign governments. If you disagree then you don't deserve any rights." The context doesn't change the fact the second sentence is hostile and wrong, and commenting on the second sentence - eg. "that's wrong, everyone deserves rights whether they agree or not" - isn't a misinterpretation of the original, it's a response to a specific problem part.

          One of the problem is people are saying the developers are hostile and saying it will not release on PC if people boycott the game this time. But the point was the developer was indirectly saying please support us and their hard work in making this game.

          This is not Phil Fish throwing a angry tantrum and cancelling Fez 2, this is a developer explaining their hard work and what the boycott will cause if the sales did not meet the goal. The game could be phenomenal and great but the pointless boycott will just reduce the developers effort to nothing just because of the publisher's decision.

          If this boycott succeed, most probably half of 4A studio might be fired and they are not even the one responsible for the decision to go to Epic store. Probably the next Metro will be gone down the drain because or an issue that only takes 2 minutes to solve by installing Epic launcher.

          Who cares what launcher the game comes with, as long the game is great.

            Probably the next Metro will be gone down the drain because or an issue that only takes 2 minutes to solve by installing Epic launcher.

            Why are you putting the onus solely on the gamers, though? You could just as easily rephrase that to say "Probably the next Metro will be gone down the drain because the publisher made a stupid decision and is sticking to it".

            Let's not pretend like any potential boycott is standalone, it's clearly in response to something, and if it's turning people off buying the game then that's an existential problem DS and 4A need to address, not just throw up hands and say "oh well, there's nothing we did to cause this and nothing we can do to fix it".

            At the end of the day, 4A is a business, Deep Silver is a business. The point of a business is to make money by giving the market something it wants. If the market doesn't want an Epic exclusive, then it was a bad business decision. Blaming customers for responding to something the business caused in the first place won't convince them to come back, it just drives more of them away.

            Case in point, I have both Metro games on Steam and I was going to wait until Exodus hit Steam to buy it, but that dev's response really soured me on that and now I'm considering skipping it altogether. I want them to show some understanding of why the exclusivity move was a problem, and what their roadmap is for avoiding that problem next time, but so far all I've gotten is a "well fuck you guys I'll take my bat and ball and go home" response from a dev, and a "don't worry about that dev, we made the decision" response from the publisher, neither of which show any sign at all of adapting.

              Because I have mentioned several times, launcher that takes 2 minutes to install is not a problem.

              All these launcher "exclusivity" is hardly exclusivity since it is as simple as installing another launcher which takes a few minutes of your time. Replying to this comment probably took the same time to install the launcher.

              I don't get why you are so against exclusivity but you are supporting exclusivity by allowing steam to continue the monopoly aka exclusivity.

                You can't actually believe it's as simple as just installing another launcher though, surely. There are so many layers beyond that, from poor security to Epic's relationship with Tencent to total lack of useful features including reviews.

                Steam isn't exclusive, it never has been. Any game on Steam can be sold anywhere else, Steam even gives out keys for no charge that developers can sell on their own store or others. Steam is a dominant force for sure, but that's not the same as artificial exclusivity by a long shot.

                  Let's not get into imaginary conspiracy theory for this. It is really as simple as installing another launcher right now.

                  Everybody thinks steam is not exclusive but it is. It has long time monopolize the PC market and it has become so ingrained into your mind that PC games=steam but it is literally a launcher that have exclusive to most of the games. Publishers chose it because it is the only launcher.

                  Steam allowing keys to be sold elsewhere makes no difference because in the you will be using steam. Epic store is selling keys out too soon as Metro physical copies will come with Epic store codes.

                  @letrico It's not a conspiracy theory, and it really isn't that simple. You should probably do some reading on what Epic offers right now and what their business relationships are, because there are very valid reasons why people don't want to deal with them as a vendor, and it's unreasonably dismissive for you to distil those concerns down to something as trivial as 'just install another launcher'. I say this as a developer myself, who has a relationship with Epic through UE4 licencing. I like Epic and I like UE4, but this move is flat wrong.

                  Steam isn't forcibly exclusive, at all. Them allowing keys to be freely sold elsewhere isn't 'no difference', it fundamentally debunks your allegation. You can buy a Steam game at any other store the developer chooses to sell it at. You can't buy Exodus at any other store the developer chooses to sell it at because they're prohibited from making that choice. I'm sorry man, but you're off the mark with this.

                  Mate it's literally grasping at straw here dragging Tencent into the fray. That is not the reason why people are against epic store. People are just plain mad because steam warriors making a fuss about a game not being in steam.

                  No Steam keys regardless where it is sold, it a steam key. Steam launcher locked and only activated by steam. That is call exclusivity. If you have a problem acknowledging steam is currently the PC exclusive launcher for most games, you probably have gotten so used to steam monopoly and it has blinded you.

                  @letrico If you don't understand what the problems people have, and you're not willing to listen to and understand the problems people have, then you're in no position to comment on whether those problems are legitimate or not. It's easy to dismiss anything that comes up as 'steam warriors having a cry', but you're deliberately, wilfully missing the point.

                  As far as I know, I've never given you a reason to think I'm some fool who just wants to jump in on a fight. I've never given you a reason to think I'm a 'steam warrior'. I'd like to think I have a track record here of being rational and considered in both my positions on issues and my comments. I'm telling you clearly: I have a problem with this, and I'm not buying the game because of it. If you refuse to believe my position is rational, if you're going to typecast me as some fool who's just looking for drama, then you're beyond reason.

                  Well I'm telling you to just install another launcher but you tell me you got soured because you have the first 2 metro on steam and this one is not.

                  Then I tell you to install another launcher but you tell me it's not that simple.

                  Then I tell you to install another launcher again but you tell me epic is a dodgy business of Tencent.

                  I fail to understand why is installing another launcher and playing another game not on steam is a problem.

                  I have seen people saying they want to have achiements, review system, those kind of stuff which prevents them from buying which is fair enough but you told me nothing except you don't want it because it's not on steam with the other 2 metro.

                  I think we should end this discussion here since we are going nowhere because you and I have different perspective in terms of what exclusivity means.

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      In just 35 posts you've managed to be an apologist for Hitler ("Maybe everything about hitler is a lie" ), an apologist for a violent political group that murdered a politician ("Britain first is exactly what it says British first"), accused authors/mods of various sins seven times, and insulted other readers twice. And that's not including any posts that were bad enough to be removed.

      Going to go out on a limb here, but I'm pretty sure it's not the moderators that are the problem.

    I very rarely comment on here and I'm probably going to regret this ......
    Is the issue that the game is only available on the Epic Game Store or is it that people pre-ordered on other platforms and then Epic changed the rules so they have to download using the Epic Game Launcher?
    There is a lot of talk about the "exclusivity" but why isn't everyone up in arms about the PlayStation Store? That has an exclusive on every PlayStation game in existence.
    Personally I don't care who or how I download a game. I just want an icon on my desktop I can click to start a game. The fact that Steam then runs up, or Origin, or Ubisoft, or whatever doesn't bother me too much.
    I would prefer if I had nothing, but acknowledge I can rarely do that any more (go Witcher!!).
    Anyway, not sure what my point is really - I think it's a bit of fuss about nothing.

      There are two issues at play here.
      First is that a developer that is threatening that the largest community of the player base won't get the next installment of the game.
      The second issue is we've come accustomed to first party publishers (EA/UBI/Blizzard/etc..) have their own exclusive platform. But when it comes to 3rd party we expect it on all distribution platforms.
      But it doesn't stop there, it's the way that they are pulling the game from a store where most people had ordered or hoped to order from. This isn't competition which we need, it's just a buyout and punishing customers.
      The better solution and PR for them would be to make it cheaper on EPIC and 'pass' the savings onto the customers. People would have a choice and that is the issue here.

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