The War Z ‘Apologise’ After Misleading Steam Customers

By John Walker on December 19th, 2012 at 11:00 am.

The ever-pondersome The War Z has managed yet another controversy, yesterday being forced to apologise to Steam users after advertising features the game simply doesn’t have. Or as Hammerpoint Interactive put it, what was “imagined” by those who “misread” the Steam page.

It seems that the description put on Steam was a touch… exaggerated, perhaps listing what the game is eventually planned to include, rather than what’s in there right now. And it didn’t even mention that the game is not yet beyond beta. Claiming to feature “areas between 100 to 400 square kilometers”, the game in fact currently only has one map, and it’s 72 square kilometers. It listed itself as having private servers, which it does not. And it sold itself as having skills to buy with experience points, despite the game having no skills at all.

An imaginary “hardcore mode” was listed, and it claimed the complete rubbish that 100 players could join a server when the limit is 50. So, well, a pack of lies? No, says executive producer Sergey Titov, it was in fact “presented in a way that could have allowed for multiple interpretations.” He continues,

“We’ve taken steps to correct this and format information presented on our Steam Store page in a way so it provides more clear information about game features that are present in the Foundation Release and what to expect in the coming weeks.

We also want to extend our apologies to all players who misread infromation about game features.”

It could be a translation thing, of course, but I’m not sure that reading the words on the screen quite counts as “misreading”. I think he meant that they “miswrote”. Incredibly, Titov’s lack of contrition goes a lot further. Yesterday GameSpy spoke to the man about the incident, and amazingly he laid the blame with the customers once more. When GameSpy persist in pointing out that they had simply listed features as included when they weren’t, Titov replied,

“I’m sure there’ll be people who will look into small details and will say “no I was mislead,” where in fact they imagined something to themselves without checking details first.”

Buh. See if you can imagine the following to yourself too!

He then goes on to say that if people feel they’ve been misled, they can just apply to Steam for a refund. Oh, okay! Because that’s always a smooth and relaxing process. His dismissive attitude throughout the interview is astonishing.

So there it is. Hammerpoint seem determined to suggest that the fault remains with customers, despite their hollow apology. And if you read that GameSpy interview, you’ll see that Titov really cannot understand what is wrong with making misleading claims about the game. Which all rather suggests you may want to think carefully before handing over money. Thanks Eurogamer.

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247 Comments »

  1. Lagwolf says:

    So it is a bit of a non-apology?

    • Premium User Badge AmateurScience says:

      A bit, yes.

    • RaytraceRat says:

      It’s more of “it’s your fault that you read the feature list and then expect them in game, we’re sorry for you”

    • P7uen says:

      They were holding it wrong?

    • GameStunts says:

      I’m pretty disgusted with the whole thing and glad I held off purchasing.

      I’ll not be purchasing the game until it’s out of beta and as plugmonkey said the other day, ‘I see some reviews so glowing I need welding goggles to read them.’

      • Premium User Badge Martel says:

        After reading this, you’re still going to buy their game? I mean, aside from the fact that it looks terrible, how could you still support this company?

        • Kitsuninc says:

          There’s a pretty huge difference between saying “I will buy this game” and “I will buy this game if after a while of further development reviews come out that say it is astonishingly good.”

          • Calneon says:

            Why, after reading all the shit about the company that’s out there, would you still want to EVER give them ANY money? Even if the game does become quite good in a year or two (it needs that long, probably more) I would never give my money to those pieces of shit.

          • Sparkasaurusmex says:

            I want to agree, Cal, but by those rules I’d have a hard time buy ANY video games.

          • Wreckdum says:

            That’s not fair Spark. Most video games don’t flat out lie to you to get your money. Most of them offer a great product and we as gamers are partially guilty of wanting the game to be more than it was advertised as. This game is none of that. It was a flat out cash grab.

            All these fools that think this game will improve over the next year or two… Well I have some beach front property in Nevada for sale if they’re interested.

            Calling it now. This dev will stop updating/supporting this game in less than six months.

      • Premium User Badge kregg says:

        Please, do yourself a favour and don’t purchase this, full stop.

        These people are like Zynga but with a different logo. If you buy into this, other snidey bastards will think this kind of attitude and treatment towards customers is OK.

        • Aardvarkk says:

          There is a petition on the Steam forums to get this game removed. I’m curious to see what, if anything comes from it.

      • Premium User Badge Joshua says:

        There are in fact reviews that are that glowy. TotalBiscuit did a review that was as bright as Cherenkov radiation.

    • khomotso says:

      I don’t know why you insist on that misinterpretation.

  2. DarkFenix says:

    Even while ‘apologising’ they manage to remain utter condescending little twats. I really hope War Z crashes and burns as badly as it deserves, hopefully amidst a huge number of charge reversals on grounds of false advertising.

    • S Jay says:

      Well, they are not apologizing. They are literary saying that people misread it.

      What to expect of a company that goes very far to steal another companies hype bandwagon? They are clearly not very good with this integrity thing.

      • Derppy says:

        I find their business model the most disgusting.

        They blatantly copied DayZ and rushed to release their title before the mod could be made into an actual game release. The name is obviously there to associate them with DayZ and hope people confuse the two.

        They completely ruin the point of open world survival with the micro transactions to get weapons, ammo, food and resurrection. It’s one of the worst examples of “pay to win” model.

        I think it’s a shame the game topped Steam’s Top10 sales and they probably make a bunch of money with the piece of crap.

        I’m all for copying other games, you can’t always have original ideas and bunch of great games are made from just polishing old ideas. However, this crosses the border between being inspired by something and blatantly riding other game’s success to grab money.

        It’s a shame they are getting so much media attention, but hopefully majority of it will be so bad it doesn’t end up being too beneficial to them.

        • Fox89 says:

          You also actually lose the items you buy once you die, don’t you? At least that’s what seemed to happen in the video Totalbiscuit made. Obviously that’s fine for consumables like ammo and food, but cosmetics and melee weapons?

          Being able to lose real money items on death is… pretty dodgy, to say the least.

          • mouton says:

            The scammy nature of the whole setup aside, losing real money on death seems like a viable way to recreate genuine survival instinct!

          • SkittleDiddler says:

            After WarZ released on Steam, the devs added a payment option for quicker character resurrection after death. Instead of waiting four hours to reload a dead character, you can now pay real money to have that character insta-rezzed.

            How nice of them. They only have the players’ best interests at heart here.

          • tyren says:

            The best part is before the patch that added the “pay to rez” option, the respawn timer was 1 hour, not 4.

      • solidsquid says:

        It’s a bit like people apologising for any offence caused rather than whatever it was they did that caused offence. It’s an apology, but it’s one which suggests the only thing they did wrong was not make things obvious enough, it’s the idiots who can’t read who have the blame for needing so much clarification

    • Hairball says:

      Unfortunately it’s still at the top of the steam sales charts, so it’s not crashing and burning, at least not yet.

      • rawrty says:

        I don’t get this at all. Why are people buying it? Even without hearing about all the stuff reported here, it’s clearly a blatant ripoff of DayZ….have people been duped into believing this is the standalone version?

        • Sidion says:

          Day Z was crap and this game was crap. It’s unlikely they’ll ever get a polished (see: working) product that lives up to the potential of Day Z.

          Though because of that potential I’m sure droves of people who were disappointed in how poorly executed Day Z was are flocking to any similar game hoping someone gets it right.

          I’m pretty sure it isn’t this company being even more evil than they’ve already been.

          • rawrty says:

            OK, if that’s the case I can understand people wanting a DayZ ‘done right’, even if it is a clone…Too bad this company didn’t take the opportunity to do that but instead they are just trying to make as much money as they can before their reputation is completely ruined. Which I think it has happened now.

    • Guvornator says:

      It’s the worst lying about lying since Jonathon Aitkin’s “simple sword of truth and the trusty shield of British fair play”.

  3. Ross Mills says:

    I’m not seeing the War Z surround any more. Did you guys remove it?…

    • Ross Mills says:

      Oh no wait, I see what it is. *Disables Adblock temporarily and refreshes page so RPS get money*

      • John Walker says:

        You could always permanently disable adblock for RPS, so we can make money from our hard work?

        • FurryLippedSquid says:

          Done & done.

        • Heliocentric says:

          You could ensure you don’t advertise games with greesy business practise.

          No? Okay I’ll meet you half way and just turn off all images(advert or not).

          • Sheng-ji says:

            I don’t wish to insinuate that you’re an idiot but it’s spelt “greasy”.

          • lordcooper says:

            As a matter of fact, they can’t. Eurogamer handles the ads for RPS to help prevent conflicts of interest.

          • Heliocentric says:

            I wasn’t spelling ‘greasy’, thanks for the petiness though.
            http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=greesy

            lordcooper, I know, that’s why I said “No?”

          • Sheng-ji says:

            Shame you didn’t put quite as much research into how RPS handles it’s advertising before slinging idiotic mud.

          • Hoaxfish says:

            Do you walk down streets with adverts for games you don’t approve of? If you take adverts as site-content then you need to stay off the internet, especially if you take it as an endorsement ahead of the actual articles.

            that urban dictionary link is clearly for a misspelled version of greasy.

          • Vorrin says:

            Sheng: ok, you don’t like his point, stop being a troll though

          • The white guar says:

            Angry internet crowds gather so fast nowadays, don’t they?

          • Heliocentric says:

            Long version: I know euro gamer handles adverts, that’s why I noted that RPS couldn’t do what I suggested and then after taking umbrage with John’s suggestion that we not use adblock at the very moment the site was advertising the game in question.

            But honestly, I do read rps mostly on a mobile with images off, I think I’ll subscribe so I can adblock on the without being a parasite though.

          • SuperNashwanPower says:

            I once did an experiment to see if an argument really could form about ANYTHING on the internet, so I went on a site and said that Oranges are the best tasting fruit.

            Time to argument: 3 replies

          • Sheng-ji says:

            So speaks a man who has clearly never eaten an apple!

            (Clearly I’m joking!)

          • pistolhamster says:

            There is always an option to just pay up front. http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/supportrps/
            Support RPS with a donation of a tenner or twenty. Its like a one up payment for one stellar issue (today’s) and getting the rest of the year complimentary.

          • roryok says:

            That’s it. I’m buying a subscription right now. The strength of that “how hollywood should adapt video games” was grounds enough

          • Seltzerking says:

            Using Urban Dictionary to defend poor spelling is sort of like referring to The Onion for real news…

          • stupid_mcgee says:

            1) “Greesy” as per the urban dictionary link, is actually just a misspelled corruption of greasy. Also, using Urban Dictionary for definitions and to verify spelling is like using Encyclopedia Dramatica as a reference for a history paper.

            2)

            I’ll meet you half way and just turn off all images(advert or not).

            Getting everything you want, and then more, without conceding a single element to the other side, is not meeting someone half way. Have you been taking lessons in compromise from the American Congress?

          • P7uen says:

            I subscribe and don’t adblock. I am the best RPS reader.

        • Premium User Badge Malkara says:

          I see an ad for TSW. Are your ads localized, or what?

        • finbikkifin says:

          I knew I’d forgotten to do something when I reinstalled.

        • Premium User Badge oWn4g3 says:

          Subscribing like a cool kid is even better!

        • Premium User Badge jimbobjunior says:

          John, I opt to block ads and subscribe instead. Is the subscription price on a par with your expected ad revenue per viewer? It seems low, and I’d happily pay more if that’s the case. Is double subscribing a thing?

        • Ross Mills says:

          Done. I didn’t realise I could do that.

          The more you know… =======*

        • MetzgerHorst says:

          well thanks john for reminding me, i am so used to ad-free webbrowsing… anyways i disabled it for RPS now.

        • LionsPhil says:

          Could you hit Eurogamer with a stick to make your ads fall back to plain image versions? Because they’re not getting NoScript whitelisted, sorry. Embedded videos may pay better but they also turn battery charge into heat far too well.

        • tomeoftom says:

          John, I really think you should encourage your readership to subscribe more – maybe make a post letting people know you can? I think the RPS readership would be pretty interested in it, given’s it’s only two pound a month, especially when it means you can disable those – let’s face it, incredibly obnoxious and annoying – ads in a conscionable way.

          • mouton says:

            Are they really so obnoxious? They just wrap the main RPS part, I barely notice them at all.

        • sophof says:

          You can maybe put a reminder or something somewhere if people have adblock enabled (I think you can detect such a thing), because I honestly never realised I had it on for RPS…
          Yes laziness on my part, but I prefer my adblock with a whitelist. Just a little hint to (maybe) increase revenue.

        • roryok says:

          I’m still using adblock, but I’ve just now donated!

        • SkittleDiddler says:

          Don’t they actually have to click on the ad in order for any ad revenue to take effect?

        • fish99 says:

          John, the day you said “there is evidence that piracy almost never leads to lost sales” and then failed to produce said evidence, is the day I turned adblock back on for RPS.

        • TechnicalBen says:

          Sorry RPS. I don’t do “click throughs”. So any amount of advertising is pointless to me. I will click through on your links and recommendations though. I’ll only buy if I want to. Advertising is not something I seek out or want to see. I drop it like a fly!

          • Dragon Master says:

            I fail to see how advertising is forcing you to buy something you don’t want to. And RPS’s ads are in no way intrusive on top of that. Might as well help them, eh?

      • S Jay says:

        Let me suggest something different: click every War Z ad you can find, even if you have no intention to buy it. You will be giving money to the advertising sites (such as RPS) and taking money from the War Z scamming studio.

    • undu says:

      I’d say it’s because you’re using adblock, noscript or something similar.

  4. jha4ceb says:

    Wow. This is *horrendous*.

  5. FurryLippedSquid says:

    And to top it all they’ve just released a patch that includes an update to the terms of service (which they originally copypasted from League of Legends) which expressly forbids refunds. It also ups the respawn time from 1 hour to 4 hours, although you can pay real-world money to be revived sooner. Fucking LOL.

    • Sheng-ji says:

      They can say what they like in their TOS, but if it goes against the law – and every country in the world (nearly) has a law which protects consumers from this – then it is not worth the pixels it is formed from.

      Have we confirmed yet that they are threatening people who ask them for refunds directly to be blacklisted with the payment processing company?

      • plugmonkey says:

        You mean like this:

        http://i.imgur.com/t6F9c.jpg

        Yeah, that’s really real.

        • Zeewolf says:

          That is pretty amazing. Worth mentioning in the article, I think.

          Also, I notice that Valve are now investigating the war z forum because of all the reports of unjust bans.

        • Sheng-ji says:

          For fucks sake – on the one hand are they really so stupid as to put that in an email, one complaint to the relevant ombudsman (probably the financial ombudsman here in the UK) and it is them who will find themselves on a black list.

          On the other hand, what utter dicks.

        • Milky1985 says:

          Yeah that can’t be legal in any way shape or form. The only way i would think they could get people blacklisted by the payment companies would be to tell them that the people who are getting refunds have defrauded them in some way.

          So its possible (saying that as these guys seem like they are a bit litigious and not above using dodgy tactics, so declaring possible and its my opinion so they can’t hit me or RPS for the comment) that they are committing fraud there with the payment company.

          if you complain to the payment company THEY may have their account shut down, they don’t like people taking the mick.

        • MayhemMike says:

          He asked for a refund 1 month after he bought it? That’s late.

        • tomeoftom says:

          Hoo boy, they are fucked. It frustrates me that we can’t have a (somehow totally trustworthy and always right) god-like Super Judge that rules the world who’s the supreme opposite of the “black letter” school. Super Judge would just fuck up patent trolls, Zynga, these guys, and everyone else that’s technically within the law but blatantly evil scum. Ah, you can only dream.

      • FurryLippedSquid says:

        Very true Sheng-Ji, I just find it incredulous that they have the cheek to try.

      • Hoaxfish says:

        Is this the same TOS that had a link to League of Legends because they’d copy&pasted LOL’s over?

  6. Arithon says:

    Can you say “World War Z” cash-in?

  7. bigjig says:

    Sounds like a complete fucking prick. Unbelievable. I’m disappointed that Valve even let this go on Steam in it’s current state.

    • SkittleDiddler says:

      Valve need to take responsibility for their shitty QA process and yank WarZ from the store permanently. They won’t, precisely because they’re making bank off the wallets of stupid people, but there it is.

  8. SandmanXC says:

    I misread this article.

  9. netizensmith says:

    Way to win friends and influence people. I’ll wait for Day Z thanks.

  10. Dowr says:

    “We’re sorry because your stupid, customers”.
    That’s basically what Hammerpoint said.

  11. Chickenfeed says:

    Does anyone else feel that all these “issues” might be on purpose? Any publicity is good publicity, etc.

    • John Mirra says:

      Nope, just russian way of business. Make unfinished product, sale it quickly, deny everything. Optional: disappear.

      • eks says:

        There is no need to be an ass and insult every Russian developer/business because you aren’t happy with this one. If I were to make sweeping statements like that and judged an entire country based on their bad apples I would probably never buy anything from any US based developer ever again. In fact, I would probably be all out of options and would have to go live in a cave somewhere.

        • John Mirra says:

          It’s not insult, I’m involved in some soft development (not related to games) and can say that for some companies it’s just constatation.

        • Maritan says:

          You aren’t from Russia, are you?

      • lordcooper says:

        Crass generalisations are fun! I’m going to make one too by assuming you’re an American.

      • Sheng-ji says:

        Pretty sure there are people from every corner of the world happy to do business like that

        • stupid_mcgee says:

          Of course there are. Enron and WorldCom are two big American examples. However, from talking to Russian friends, it seems that it’s easier to get away with defrauding customers in Russia. Because it’s easier, it tends to be more commonplace. Of course, not all Russian developers, or even businesses, are like that. But talk to any Russian and they’ll tell you there is a fairly strong culture of corruption there.

      • Lanfranc says:

        It seems to be specifically a Sergey Titov way of doing business. This is the same guy who produced Big Rigs: Over the Road Racing (AKA “Worst Game of all Time”).

        • Dozer says:

          Big Rigs! Is that the one where you can accelerate endlessly if you’re in reverse gear until you’re travelling at the speed of light?

      • mckertis says:

        ” just russian way of business.”

        If i didnt “misread” this, then you obviously “mistyped” USian, as Sergey Titov is, in fact, a USian, seeing as how he lives in LA.

        • John Mirra says:

          That’s not how nationality works.

          • Sheng-ji says:

            The comment you replied to was brought to you by the same people who berate the cynical brit for calling himself British when he resides in the US of A

          • roryok says:

            the rule is, if you’re not born in the US you have to add “-american” to the end of your nationality.

          • stupid_mcgee says:

            roryok, the subsection of that rule is that if you don’t want to add the -american, you can simply refer to yourself as a dirty, job-stealing, freedom-hating, good-for-nothing, lazy foreigner. This also implies that you deny the fact that America was built by foreigners.

      • yesterdayisawadeer says:

        Russian game development is generally awful. It’s easier to name companies that don’t screw up than those that do.

      • Chelicerate says:

        I’ll take “bigotry” for 500, Bob.

    • Sheng-ji says:

      I’m pretty sure they’re not ripping people off accidentally! I doubt it’s for publicity though, just ask Gary Glitter just how good any publicity is.

    • S Jay says:

      Their business model is based on ripping people off – players and, of course, Bohemia Interactive.

    • Baines says:

      An ex-developer has apparently previously claimed that they plan to abandon the game after around six months to a year.

  12. rustybroomhandle says:

    “No no no, you don’t understand, officer. My wife was beating my fists up with her face.”

    • The Godzilla Hunter says:

      “Look, I am really sorry that my actions came out in a way that could be misinterpreted, and I am sorry that you and my wife misinterpreted my actions, but the bottom line is, she was beating up my fists.”

      • SuperNashwanPower says:

        “And now its ME that looks like the bad guy! ITS SO UNFAIR. And I have to be reminded of it every day by her horrible bruised face. But no one cares what I feel do they!! **has meltdown** ”

        I’m guessing a few people here have also grown up with narcissistic relatives …

  13. moocow says:

    “Let’s be frank: when you read “up to 100 players” — what does it mean to you personally? I mean, for me it doesn’t mean that I will play with 99 other players”

    I look forward to buying this game up to once.

  14. Jockie says:

    There are very few games where I see it and think ‘I really hope this fails’. But The War Z qualifies. The developers have been acting in a shameful way since virtually the day it was announced and don’t deserve anyone’s cash.

    Sadly the game is currently sat at the top of the Steam charts, based on whatever nonsense features their marketing department dreamed up.

    Personally think Steam should offer (not wait for a request to be submitted) a full refund and kick the game out of their store.

    • juandemarco says:

      They should indeed. How the hell did it make it to Steam in the first place without even being in beta? Shouldn’t Steam itself at least advertise the fact with a big, shining, blinking, all-encompassing red BETA ribbon?

      • wu wei says:

        They don’t, no, and it’s absolutely disgusting.

        Dejobaan’s 1..2..3… KICK IT! is getting close to two years now without a proper release. Two “features” were added after it had been on Steam for some time that say “Be part of the design process as Dejobaan creates its best game yet” and “Get the full game once it’s completed!” but those are just bullet points on a list when they should be at the top of the goddamn page.

        Unfortunately it looks like finishing a game people have paid for isn’t as profitable as milking your most famous cash cow, as Dejobaan have developed & released the re-hash of AaAAaaAAetc in the interim.

        Steam even included KICK IT! in various bundles. They need to be a lot more open and obvious about the current development status of games, and if something hasn’t had any movement for 2 years then I sure as fuck should be entitled to a refund, but Valve says no, because I’ve “had” the “game” all that time.

        So yeah, honestly, I don’t see how KickStarter – even with the risk of getting nothing – is any goddamn worse than this.

      • Prime says:

        ^This.

        I’d like to see some movement on this from Valve who appear to be very lax when it comes to proper controls over the quality of products making it into Steam and information contained on the sale page. Some kind of clear BETA! warning label should be introduced at the very least. Oh, and removing lies would help also.

        • Premium User Badge basilisk says:

          But then we’d lose the hilarity that are the product pages of many old games, such as these bulletpoints in the description of the original Unreal:

          - Over 47 eye-popping single player missions.
          - Special graphical and performance enhancements for the latest 3D cards.

          Steam doesn’t really need to wield even more power, but some degree (and consistency) of curation in their store would be quite useful.

  15. Premium User Badge Clavus says:

    Let’s hope everyone forgets about this junk once the DayZ standalone comes around. Although it’ll probably be in a similar state of development, at least Rocket and Bohemia will be behind it.

  16. mrmalodor says:

    What a smug fuck.

  17. Optimaximal says:

    Tom Bramwell mentioned on EuroGamer that he’s had The War Z removed from the EG ad-rotation, so it shouldn’t appear on RPS anymore.

  18. FurryLippedSquid says:

    Eurogamer have just removed all War Z advertising, ha, what a shit-storm.

    • SuperNashwanPower says:

      I love it when rampant egotism spills over into the public domain and is promptly stamped on. Watching someone lie to get out of a bit of egg on the face, and ending up with three times more. Like the Streisand Effect, but not.

  19. JustAPigeon says:

    Disgusting. Come on Steam, stop promoting this shit.

  20. blighty says:

    Even bigger nonsense on their website.

    From http://thewarz.com/faq.html

    What is limit of players per server?

    When renting a server you’ll be able to choose between a predefined number of player slots. The lowest amount of players per server is 70 and the maximum is 250.

  21. MeestaNob says:

    A big fan of Valve, but they need to be held accountable for the standard of this third-party product they have ‘greenlit’ for distribution on Steam, as well as the contempt that developer has displayed for the community.

    Not Valve’s finest hour, this.

    • Premium User Badge Clavus says:

      I’m sure they’re debating the issue. It’s not something they should do lightly. The only previous time I remember a game being removed from Steam is back when Crysis 2 disappeared because of license and DLC payment issues with EA.

      And you can’t blame them for not foreseeing this. They’re not playtesting everything that is released on Steam. Hammerpoint had a previous title, War Inc, on Steam so they’re basically a ‘trusted developer’.

      • Core says:

        Also all the Neverwinter Nights games have been pulled from steam (and every other digital distributor). But that is because Atari, and Wizards of the coast are in some kind of dispute over them.

        • iniudan says:

          Neverwinter Nights Diamonds edition still available on GOG and Gamersgate. But they have Hasbro or Wizard of the Coast has noted publisher.

        • stupid_mcgee says:

          The deal with Atari and Hasbro has, AFAIK, sailed. Atari no longer has the D&D license. Also, I think it was NWN2 that was on steam. I’m not saying you’re wrong, but I don’t recall seeing NWN on there, just NWN2.

          Anyways, my guess is that NWN2 being pulled from Steam is because the previous arrangement was with Atari. Once Hasbro gained sole distribution rights, any and all contracts for the distribution of those games must be renegotiated.

          For GOG, there is a vested interest in making this happen so they continue to offer their list of D&D titles. With Steam, I doubt they pursued the issue and will just wait until Hasbro comes to them to try and re-list NWN2.

          Also, Clavus is right. Hammerpoint was a “trusted developer” because of their listing of War Inc. It can be difficult to get onto Steam, but, once you’re in, you’re in and given a lot more leeway.

      • tomeoftom says:

        That is ridiculous and insane. Valve make money from purchases of any game on Steam, and so they damned well better hire someone to make sure that the product does what it says on the tin. They are very, very rich and the cost of hiring just one person to this kind of thing out is nothing.

        • SkittleDiddler says:

          What’s sad is that Valve reps have previously admitted that they put absolutely no effort into playtesting and QA’ing games that make it into the Steam Store.

        • stupid_mcgee says:

          One person? Are you insane? To properly assess a game would take a team of several people playing around the clock every single day. There’s sometimes 10 or more games being released in a single week, not to mention various DLC.

          I’m sorry, but Valve has no more expectancy to playtest the games they sell than a brick-and-mortar retailer has to test theirs. Furthermore, it isn’t as easy or as feasible as you think. It would take much more than just one person, and even then, there’s no way they could properly catch all of the bugs and glitches that can be attributed to different hardware configurations.

  22. Zarunil says:

    Valve really needs to get off their asses and do something. Having this scam on Steam isn’t putting Valve in a favorable light.

    I really feel bad for all the people who bought this tripe based on lies.

    • Belsameth says:

      This. While I understand they can’t guarantee quality, this is filled with blalant lies and an outright moneygrab.

  23. muskieratboi says:

    Let’s talk about reputation for a moment. The executive producer on The War Z was also project lead and main programmer for Big Rigs: Over The Road Racing.

    While TheWarZ is a marked improvement over that in the fact that the game has working logic, do you really want to give money to the man who had previously advertised “Racing against police and delivering stolen cargo” and gave us the what is regarded by many to be the single worst commercially released PC title of all time?

    • Lanfranc says:

      And he figured out found a programmer who knows how to do actual physics and collision detection. That’s progress!

  24. Premium User Badge Nathan says:

    Courtesy of Tim Edwards, Sergey’s interview on a Big Rigs fan site (!?): http://www.yourewinner.com/index.php?action=stitovinterview

    • stupid_mcgee says:

      Premonition?

      Is Midnight Race Club an enhanced version of BROTRR?

      Dude – as far as I remember Gamemill wanted to make one racing SKU, but split it into two – BR and MRC. I can’t understand why they wanted to do that, and why they decided to release pre alpha versions of the game to public. Maybe they were too greedy?

  25. The Godzilla Hunter says:

    When will the world learn that putting “:)” in your sentences, ESPECIALLY when people might be mad at you, makes you look an utter jerk?

    • The Enchanting Wizard Of Rhythm says:

      I headbutt kittens :)

      Gosh, you’re right.

  26. chris1479 says:

    Don’t normally comment but in this instance I feel obliged. I had a horrendous run-in with Hammerpoint Interactive where it took all manner of legal threats and complaints to get my money back. Before I did all that they tried to stonewall me by telling me that I’d agreed to “no refunds” in the EULA. Anyway here’s an excerpt:

    Dear Xsolla,

    I purchased a game called The WarZ via Xsolla and have requested a refund -
    the game is a broken, buggy mess – and the company (Hammerpoint
    Interactive) is not cooperating or acknowledging my refund requests.

    I have explained that I am entitled under European law to a no questions
    asked refund within 14 days of purchase and still receive no response. I
    will pursue this with trading standards.

    Here is the transaction from Paypal:
    “The War Z, USD, invoice 31573121; $24,99 USD, for help go to
    support.xsolla.com”
    Transaction Code: ******************

    I would appreciate your assistance with my refund.
    _____________

    Response:

    Viva

    Viva (Xsolla)

    Dec 04 07:02 am (YEKT)

    Hello,

    Subject to the terms of the War Z Terms of Service (the “TOS”) and the End User License Agreement (the “EULA”), governing your purchases on War Z website http://www.thewarz.com and affiliated sites (the “Websites”), ALL PAYMENTS ARE FINAL, THERE ARE NO REFUNDS OR RETURNS FOR PRODUCTS OR SERVICES PURCHASED on the Websites except, in War Z’s sole and absolute discretion or where required by law. War Z reserves the right to terminate your account and to prevent your use of any and all services if your account is used to engage in illegal activity or to violate the TOS or EULA. http://www.thewarz.com/tos.html So there is no way to make a refund.

    We apologize for inconveniences.

    __________

    So ladies and gentlemen there you have it, that’s what this Sergei guy thinks of his customers.

    Wanna know what other game this guy developed? Ever heard of a little game called “Big Rigs Off Road Racing”? Oh yes… that was him too.

    In short Hammerpoint Interactive and their lackeys at Xsola are out to cash in on Day Z and run away with as much money as they possibly can before being sued or shut down.

    F*** these guys.

    • sdancer says:

      Just file a complaint with your credit card provider. If you manage to get a refund through them, it means an additional fee for the payment processor, who in turn will have a slight incentive not to do business with that particular con artist anymore.

      • Chalky says:

        Yes, everyone needs to chargeback if they try to fob you off with this sort of crap. Get your money back, this EULA is illegal in the EU.

    • Mattressi says:

      I love how you cite European law to them to try to make them give you a refund and they reply with “ALL PAYMENTS ARE FINAL, THERE ARE NO REFUNDS OR RETURNS FOR PRODUCTS OR SERVICES PURCHASED on the Websites except, in War Z’s sole and absolute discretion or where required by law.” I wonder if Sergey is also Hammerpoint’s customer support…

      Also, what kind of hammer has a point?

    • solidsquid says:

      Wait, so you didn’t respond to them saying that it *is* required by law because it’s within 14 days?

    • Asurmen says:

      What EU law covers this?

      • Curry the Great says:

        http://europa.eu/youreurope/citizens/shopping/online-shopping/returning-unwanted-goods/index_en.htm

        That covers the entire EU I think, and allows you to get a refund for 7 days after receiving your product for any reason whatsoever. Some countries have even better laws in the EU (which supersede EU law I think). Among them is Holland, where there’s a period of 14 days IIRC.

        • Asurmen says:

          Unfortunately, the UK’s application of that EU law, the Distance Selling Act, does not cover digital goods. Infact, it doesn’t allow a refund under the act for phyiscal goods that have been unsealed, such as music CDs and games. As I understand the Act, Hammerhead are unfortunately correct in their requirement for a refund.

          • chris1479 says:

            Right or wrong I did manage to prise a refund out of them.

      • chris1479 says:

        In case anyone’s interested, after filing a complaint with as many organisations as I could find, it was weird to see how their do-not-give-a-fuck attitude did a total 180 when and only when I opened a complaint with Paypal. My theory is that if paypal decides to stop trading with “Xsola” or whoever these c***s are then they are in the shit. Their 1 proviso to me getting a refund was to close the complaint with paypal. Weird eh?

        • Optimaximal says:

          Yeah, it’s funny… They threaten to blacklist you, but the second *they* potentially get blacklisted by a payment processor, the tune changes.

          Paypal’s ‘customer focus’ in helpful shocker.

          • Sheng-ji says:

            I’ve had to use paypal’s dispute process twice from each side and in every occasion they have protected me from scammers, one in particular when an unscrupulous wheelchair salesman tried to lighten me of my lifes savings (£7000) for a chair which he horribly misrepresented (and indeed outright lied about) on ebay and was in fact worth no more than £100.

        • Deadfast says:

          So I take it you got your money back then?

          • chris1479 says:

            I did indeed, result! Honestly though, what a bunch of shysters. Disgraceful.

  27. sdancer says:

    That guy must have learned PR from Comical Ali.

  28. Lanfranc says:

    So this game has only been out for two days, and we’re already looking at:

    1. False advertising
    2. Consumer rights violations (refusing refunds, threatening blacklisting)
    3. Potential trademark violations vs. DayZ (bit of a grey area there, but I’d be looking very closely at this if I were Bohemia Interactive)

    Anything I missed?

    • SuperNashwanPower says:

      4. Kitten punching

      • Hulk Handsome says:

        Just posting to say that the above post made me lol.

      • Zeewolf says:

        That’s it. They’ve crossed the line!

      • Premium User Badge slerbal says:

        You’ve hit the nail on the head, or rather they have – using kittens as hammers is just plain wrong :)

    • wu wei says:

      I think Max Brooks might have something to say to both Hammerpoint & Bohemia Interactive.

      • plugmonkey says:

        In which case George A. Romero must surely have something to say to Max Brooks…

        Max Brooks didn’t invent zombies. He certainly didn’t invent people being infected by a rage virus.

        (I believe that too was George A. Romero)

        • The Godzilla Hunter says:

          Yes, but Max Brooks wrote a book called WarZ, and this game is named The War Z. I also believe the book is being adapted into a movie, and so it is not a stretch to say that the creators of The War Z could be seen as attempting to pass their product as one associated with Max Brooks. Then again, I am not a lawyer, and don’t know how these things work.

          • Muzman says:

            He didn’t. He wrote a book called World War “Z”: An Oral history of the Zombie war.
            This one is called The WarZ, which is splitting the difference between being “War Z” and a homonym “The Wars”.
            Zombie stuff is such a morass I don’t think anyone would want to start any sort of copyright battle. It would be detrimental to its, rapidly fading admittedly, indie DIY spirit.

          • stupid_mcgee says:

            Muzman got it. The Max Brooks book is called ‘World War Z,’ which bears little resemblance to Day Z. One could try and make the case that ‘The War Z’ is trying to capitalize off of ‘World War z’ and mislead customers, but it’s a fairly flimsy case and there is no real evidence to support this other than supposition, which isn’t admissible.

    • Deadfast says:

      Association with Big Rigs: Over the Road Racing?

  29. Aquix42 says:

    So, maybe The War Z is a totally awesome game, I don’t know, I haven’t played it… But I have been to law school, and know about contracts and torts… These guys are asking to get sued. I don’t think that a terms of service agreement would insulate them against liability for fraud. I wonder how long Valve’s lawyers will let them continue selling this game.

    Who’s up for a class action?

    • SuperNashwanPower says:

      I’ve got a feeling that Valve changed their TOS so that you “can’t ” start a class action. Of course the Law of the Land applies, but still. I remember it being mentioned a while back.

      • Sheng-ji says:

        Well that’s really up for the courts to decide, Valve don’t actually get to dictate what cases the courts will accept, much as they would like to I’m sure.

        • Aquix42 says:

          Valve probably has an “arbitration clause” that says “if you sue us we have to go arbitration (a private informal court)” and, “no class arbitration”… so if you bring a class action they will say that it’s governed by the terms of service (contract) which says to go to arbitration. That tactic was upheld in some case with AT&T a couple years ago. I think that its a little different in Europe. But Valve didn’t really do anything wrong here so suing them probably wouldn’t do much.

          I’m thinking more about the War Z developers. Fraud, and all this other stuff. Possible putative damages. Also, the terms of service were copied from league of legends. Which aside from being hilarious may have some bearing on their validity. There was a contract between players and the developers, but I have no idea if a TOS that neither of them ever read could represent it…

          this is a pretty interest situation, I honestly have no idea how it will work out… But, I recognize a lot of legal issues and it doesn’t look good for the developers.

          • Premium User Badge Naum says:

            Legal noob here, but could LoL’s TOS actually be copyright protected? Having these guys sued for stealing another game’s TOS in order to ‘legalise’ their own actions would be incredibly hilarious.

          • Aquix42 says:

            I dont know if it is, but its certainly possible that LoL’s ToS could be copyright protected, either by LOL or whatever law firm wrote it. That would be pretty hilarious. If I were The War Z devs I would be more worried about it being unenforceable.

      • solidsquid says:

        You can’t take out a class action against Valve, but Hammerhead is fair game

      • sdancer says:

        You can’t start a class action against Valve/Steam, assuming that part of the ToS is even valid. That doesn’t apply for any other company they happen to do business with.

        That clause (class action waiver/binding arbitration) is also not valid for EU customers, as I was able to coax from them after a lengthy odyssey through their support ranks.

        All in all, sue whoever took your money.

    • unacom says:

      It makes you want to buy the game just to be able to sue them.

    • MrLebanon says:

      I’m down

      the WarZ is the first game I have bought where i have felt GUILTY of making the purchase.

      I bought it back when it actually was advertised as Alpha, a buddy convinced me it was awesome. It was meh and I wasn’t too happy with the purchase, but at the time I could at least say “hey it’s Alpha it’ll get there”

      All this crap surfacing I legitimately feel bad for giving these guys my monies

  30. remoteDefecator says:

    I dunno about y’all, but I’m enjoying the fuck out of this unfolding drama. I hope Hammerpoint is sued for fraud, Sergey Titov is ruined, and the whole episode serves as a stern warning to any other would-be shyster “developers.”

    While I feel I pissed $30 away on this crappy game, I don’t really have a case for demanding a refund, because I bought it during beta. Oh well, not the first crappy game I’ve purchased, and likely not the last.

  31. MrEvilRobot says:

    If someone has a spare guest key for The War Z, I would be glad to receive it :)
    Thank You.

  32. -Spooky- says:

    Valve should be greenlit this alpha crap and turn it on to greenlight. Let the customers decide. Fo´real, mates.

  33. Sarkhan Lol says:

    Jeez, look at all the GAMER ENTITLEMENT in this thread!

    • Optimaximal says:

      Surely because you’re buying something that doesn’t work, it’s more like ‘Buyer Entitlement’, something that’s covered by various laws around the world?

  34. jkz says:

    FFS, do you guys not understand the simple concept of a foundation release?? They aren’t lies they are officially coming soon probably. People moaning about having up to 100 players when only 50 are supported, he could have said up to 300 players, that would be a lie, this is just a way of saving you time by combining the features list with the features wishlist. I mean the devs are just looking out for you so you don’t have to read two lists, we are all busy people.

    • Sheng-ji says:

      Nice use of the word probably.

    • Prime says:

      Nice one. :)

    • El_Emmental says:

      hahha :’D

      Anyway, can’t wait to see people coming up with actual lawsuit, I would gladly put a few dollars in the kickstarter to pay for the lawyer.

      • unacom says:

        YEEEES! This gets going.
        Kickstart the class action suit.
        “Hello we´re soandso. We´re here on Kickstarter to sue Hammerpoint to hell and back again.
        Pledge for a participation.
        basic pledge – you´re part of the class action suit.
        10$-pledge: Be there when the judge reads the verdict.
        20$-pledge: have one rotten tomato when they pull him out of the couthouse
        35$-pledge: tomato and egg. rotten.
        50$-pledge: pitchfork.
        100$-pledge: keg of tar
        150$-plege: keg of tar and feathers.
        500$-pledge: Your handsigned DVD of the Titov-Lynching. Handsigned by the executee himself.
        .
        .
        .

    • Spoon Of Doom says:

      I have honestly no idea if this is real or sarcasm. Poe’s law strikes again.

      Edit: After rereading, I’m leaning towards sarcasm. But I have already read similar posts which really meant what they said, so forgive me for not realising sooner.

  35. Azophi says:

    Well I for one find myself trusting the praise heaped on the game by “John Hammers” and “Smith Hammers”, who are clearly not shills on the Steam forums, or the devs themselves.

    http://steamcommunity.com/app/226700/discussions/0/828925849078398187/#p1

    This really is an enormous mess, and Steam ought to clear it all out as quickly as possible.

  36. ten_six says:

    Reminds me of “you’re holding it wrong”

  37. CobraLad says:

    Sergei Titov? He is quite known komrade in Motherland and overseas. He made Big Rigs, a game of WINNER.

  38. jkz says:

    I’m surprised so many people have been taken in by this game, alarm bells were ringing months ago.

  39. LoveIsGood says:

    1) They copy pasted the League of Legends Legal Agreement
    2) Sergi Titov made Big Rigs Over the Road Racing (A regular topper in the lists of ‘worst game of all time’)

  40. Network Crayon says:

    Worst video game launch ever?

  41. BlackAlpha says:

    I think I understand what the developer said. And it makes perfect sense: “When you read something, forget what you’ve just read and imagine something completely different.”

    It’s not like it’s false advertisement that will mislead people into buying a product that is completely different from the description. Nothing wrong with that, right?

    /sarcasm

    It is such a fail on the developers behalf. First they make that blatant mistake that very much falls under false advertisment. Then all they need to do to fix it is to say “sorry”, but instead they do this. I think this clearly shows those developers are either incompetent or they aren’t afraid to use dirty tricks to get more money. Either way, it’s not a good idea to trust them with your money, unless you don’t mind getting screwed over.

  42. ChromeBallz says:

    I still wonder why anyone would be surprised that a game developer who blatantly rips off Day Z is only after your money and doesn’t actually care about you.

    • MrLebanon says:

      as if to say that every “rip-off” of another game has bad. Yes… every FPS after DOOM is horrible and the devs are bad people.

      I mean k Hammerpoint are a bunch of dicks, but I don’t think taking the DayZ formula is why they are dicks.

      False advertising and lies to cusotmers/potential customers is what makes them dicks

      • The Godzilla Hunter says:

        It is not that they are taking the ideas, but that they A) have a name so similar that it is obvious that they want people to associate DayZ with WarZ and B) they have said that they came up with the idea first, before DayZ. While this could be true, evidence points to them converting their previous game into WarZ after the success of DayZ. This leaves a bad taste in peoples mouths, as they are not simply taking the idea, but also taking credit for coming up with the idea.

        • Baines says:

          Sergey also said that DayZ lost popularity after War Z was announced.

        • sinister agent says:

          Yeah, there’s nothing necessarily wrong with copying a successful game (though you really need to improve on it and do something new or brilliant to make it count) – Saints Row was very clearly a GTA-likea after all, and that was great fun. But cutting it so close that it’s clear you’re hoping to cash in on people confusing the two… that’s just low.

          Even if they got the idea independently, which is already dubious as you’ve pointed out, and that’s before we consider the way their spokesman here seems happy to simply lie, well, why would you keep the name? If I came up with something and someone else released a very similar thing before I was finished, which even had a similar name, the first thing I’d do is give it a new name and work on distinguishing it from the other game.

          Well, alright, the first thing I’d do is call up my friends and bitch about whoever made the other game, and imply terrible things about their sexual proclivities. But the second thing I’d do would be more constructive.

  43. SonicTitan says:

    I admit to following this story with much more interest than is maybe healthy. The last two days on the Steam forums have been like watching a star implode in slow motion; glorious and terrible.

    As much as I personally love Steam, I think there’s something to be said here for a storefront taking responsibility for what it sells. Between this and Towns they’ve had quite a time of it lately, and even though I didn’t purchase the game (because, seriously, look at that pile of ass) I took a few minutes to email Newell personally about the problem, which is something I never EVER do, even if I like the business.

    Also relevant: http://questionablecontent.net/view.php?comic=2047

    • Premium User Badge slerbal says:

      ^^ Agreed.

    • SkittleDiddler says:

      Instead of looking for a job yesterday, I spent an inordinate amount of time at the Steam forums. Schadenfreude in action.

  44. jhng says:

    The behaviour of WarZ is really shoddy. I know IP is a bit of a bogeyman round these parts, but to my mind their choice of name and presentation of the game is tantamount to passing off.

    For the uninitiated, in English law passing off basically boils down to goodwill (which DayZ has in spades — heck, it actually drove Arma 2 sales to the top of the Steam chart), a misrepresentation calculated to deceive consumers (borderline but certainly worth a shot given their choice of name and the actual confusion among some Steam users) and damage or risk of damage to the claimant (most obviously in depressing launch sales of the standalone version). Not cast-iron, but then passing off never is.

    If they haven’t already Dean and his buddies at Bohemia should definitely be taking legal advice on this.

  45. Snoken says:

    They should consider themselves very lucky that they are mostly dealing with a bunch of angry kiddies because I think we have seen lawsuits for far less than this enormous pile of false promises (I was going to write “bullshit”, but I don’t want to use too much of a foul vocabulary on this).

    Truth to be told I signed up for that crap even though I am over thirty. Still fell for it and I hate myself for being so greedy and impatient.

    If you ask me this game would not even be worth playing if it was free-to-play to be honest. Long live DayZ!!! xD

  46. Deadfast says:

    “Ladies and gentlemen, I would like to publicly apologize for all of you being idiots. Thank you.”

  47. Shadowcat says:

    Last time I spoke with Sergey Titov, he was practically abuzz with renewed vigor. He’d left Big Rigs behind him, started his own hand-picked studio, and ascended back into the dubious-concept realm he so loves to call home. But reality has a way of dousing even the most excited of flames, and Titov knows that better than just about anyone. But the godfather of god-awful truck-driving games was different when we spoke today: insanely thrilled to be launching his DayZ meets DayZ meets DayZ opus The War Z, yes, but also wearied, frantic, and tremendously unapologetic. It’s been a rough few days for Hammerpoint Interactive, and it showed. And then something crazy happened: Sergey Titov cried. Openly. Without reservation. But not for the reason you might think. “I just,” he winced, his voice audibly cracking, “I still believe so much.”

    • Skabooga says:

      I’m dying from the laughter. So good.

    • jhng says:

      I laughed on the train. Now everyone thinks I’m weird. Thanks.

      • stupid_mcgee says:

        People think you’re weird for laughing on the train? Man, you should come to America and ride the public buses. Even if you were spewing blood while laughing, wearing a polka-dot rubber ducky inner-tube, neon green galoshes during a dry summer day, and no pants, you would still probable be one of the more normal passengers.

  48. sinister agent says:

    “In a prepared statement, Titov theorised that his company had behaved impeccably, and that it was reality itself that was mistaken.”

    What a bloody disgrace. This game is going to crash and burn – it wasn’t even on my radar until yesterday, and now all I see about it is lies, and a company apparently run by shameless arseholes.

  49. Knoll says:

    Look, the bottom line is everybody (and I mean everybody except an infinitesimally small minority) wants to see this awful game wiped off the face of the Earth and never seen or heard from again. And yet it just keeps popping up everywhere like genital herpes.
    So people are getting confused and frustrated by this, and lashing out. And the devs act like we are the ones with the problem.
    I’ll put it plainly: We won’t be happy until this game is gone. Take it off Steam. Get rid of it forever, or continue to be harassed.

    I would bet there isn’t a single person who couldn’t name 100 games of superior quality to War Z, that see less success than War Z. Why? It’s an injustice!
    It’s goddamn frustrating to see objectively horrible games succeed! What don’t they understand about that?

    • Fwiffo says:

      Shady merchants and the suckers that buy from them are as old as the concept of money itself. Older, no doubt. It’ll never change!

  50. fish99 says:

    What scumbags, can’t even manage a proper apology when they’re clearly in the wrong.

    It’s not just that the steam page is lying, from TBs video, the games just looks awful. 5 hits with a spiked club doesn’t kill a zombie, you take falling damage from a slight slope, there’s nothing in 90% of the world, and the other 10% you can’t get to because of zombie swarms. Plus you can’t even swim.

    It also looked like items bought for real money just disappear when you die, which is mind bogglingly awful.

    Then you’ve got the name which is meant to trick people into thinking this might be the Day Z standalone, and the obvious attempt at cashing in on another games popularity.