This Is The Police Delayed For A Week After Publisher Forgets To Press Button On Steam

Cop management sim This Is the Police [official site] was supposed to be released today but has been pushed back because the publisher forgot to press a button on Steamworks – the publishing side of Valve’s digital store. The game will now be released next week, the developers have said. And the folks responsible seem very, very embarrassed.

This Is the Police is a decision-heavy story of precinct management. You play as a chief of police who has been forced into early retirement by a dodgy mayor and who has just 180 days to gather the money he’ll need to survive. Cue corner-cutting, layoffs and corrupt deals with the mafia. All the while you’ll have investigations to carry out, not to mention those pencil pushers down at City Hall to deal with, always breathing down your neck to fire all your black police officers or hire more women or serve whatever their political whims are that day.

If that sounds good to you: sorry. You’ll have to wait. Because one of the developer’s publishing partners, EuroVideo Medien, forgot to press the button that puts the game through some final checks on Steam, which is a process that can take a week. As a result, the official release date has been moved to August 2 and the releases on GOG and Humble have also been pushed back to match this date. The director of the company responsible explained what went wrong.

“The reason for the delayed release was a mistake by us here at EuroVideo. When releasing a game on Steam, you have to hit a button in Steamworks saying “ready for final approval from Steam”. Steam then proceeds to check the game, and makes sure it complies with their quality standards. Usually this approval process takes 2-5 business days, and you can not release the game without passing it.

“We were responsible to hit that button and unfortunately we missed this window, as we realized it yesterday, i.e. too late for a July 28 release. We made a mistake and feel very sorry about it. Weappy has nothing to do with this – it was just a personal mistake on our side.

“Again: We are really sorry about that.”

Whoops. Meanwhile, the reviews for the game are being published regardless, with some saying the design is an unbalanced drag and others saying it fails to say anything of importance on social issues that are currently engulfing the US. The Belorussian developer, Weappy, responded directly to this latter charge a few days ago in an open letter.

“This Is the Police is not based on any actual incidents, nor does it try to portray them either directly or indirectly. We are certainly talking about problems that exist in the real world, but all the characters and their actions in the game are fictional from start to finish.

“This Is the Police is not about the United States or any other individual country. We deliberately did not specify when and where the events in the game unfold — not because we were being cryptic, but because it doesn’t matter. In our understanding, the world is a seamless space. The word “geopolitics” fills us with sincere disgust, and any boundary walls and barriers, both physical and socio-cultural, drive us to depression.”

Whether you agree with that or not, I don’t know. Without seeking to exonerate them completely, it’s important to note that Belorussian creators often stay clear of overt political messages, what with it being a dictatorship and all. Years ago, I spoke to someone from Belarus in a bar in Moscow. “In Belarus we have a saying,” he told me, “Only sharpshooter can save our country.”

I asked him if they don’t protest.

“Oh yes, we protest,” he said, “but in quiet voice.”

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23 Comments

  1. gunny1993 says:

    Inadvertent publicity, I am now interested in this game as it gives me an excuse to say stuff like “Mayors got my ass in a sling” and “You’re a rouge cannon, but you get the job done, watch your ass” Whilst drinking cheap whisky.

    • Sheng-ji says:

      I love the idea of a dozen burlesque dancers lining up in front of a cannon which fires a shell of makeup onto them.

      • gunny1993 says:

        link to youtube.com

        Most amusing consistent spelling mistake ever.

        • CartonofMilk says:

          it pisses me off nearly as much as villians instead of villains. When i used to play DCUO this would drive me crazy ten times a day.

          • Sheng-ji says:

            What about the eternally delightful “villein”. It’s rare, but almost always causes a chuckle!

          • Premium User Badge

            phuzz says:

            On behalf of all us dyslexics, sorry.

      • KevinLew says:

        The RPG section of Goat Simulator actually has a “Rouge” class (whose powers come from makeup products) to see if anybody can tell it is purposely misspelled. A huge number of Let’s Players continued to say “rogue” while staring right at the word.

    • vahnn says:

      Or is that a cannon made in the capital of Louisiana? What differentiates a Rouge Cannon from one built elsewhere?

    • Bforceny says:

      The chief is breathing down my neck…48 hours is all you got!

  2. Sheng-ji says:

    Steam makes sure a game complies with quality standards…

    Huh…

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      X_kot says:

      Someone forgot to tell Activision!

    • Gotem says:

      I think that is the most surprising thing about the article, that someone checks games before they get published on steam.

  3. TWChristine says:

    “Those responsible for pressing the button have been sacked.”

  4. Michael Fogg says:

    This looks like an interesting Papers Please-inspired proposition, which ultimately dissapoints on the gameplay front because the whole game is just tweaking menus – no quasi-physical manipulation of documents that feels so tangible and satysfying in Lucas Pope’s masterpiece.

    Also, the Kilscreen review linked above contains some questionable reflections:
    >>>the orders to shut down peaceful protests with nightsticks and SWAT teams feel genuinely alien from where I’m sitting, because Canada doesn’t have the same laws against public assembly that Belarus does<<<
    Assuming that the game does present a veiled version of the USA (as suggested by all the noir fiction tropes): that's completely different from what I read re: militarisation of police in the States (think cops with rifles and APC facing off BLM protests).

  5. Halk says:

    “Steam then proceeds to check the game, and makes sure it complies with their quality standards.”

    [Add Tidus laugh]

  6. Michael Fogg says:

    The Killscreen piece is really appaling:
    >>>Freeburg may be a generic Western city, but not all of humankind lives in generic Western cities. I have no idea what a game called This Is the Police would look like if it was made in Singapore or Iran, but I suspect that it would be very different<<<

    What a weird comment to make while reviewing a game explicitly NOT made by a dev based in a Western city (Minsk, Belarus)

  7. siliciferous says:

    link to eurogamer.net

    So a few days ago I watched this review over at EuroGamer, and not only felt that that John Chiodini’s stance was completely rational, but I largely agreed with it and based on the supporting examples shown. Then I made the mistake of reading comments – this is on Eurogamer’s own site, by the way, not the YouTube thread which is of course an order of magnitude more vile – and was stunned by the amount of vitriol on display.

    I can’t help but have this overwhelming feeling of sadness at the strength of troll mobs when it comes to piling hatred on any attempt at even-headed discussion of *GASP SUBJECT MATTER WITH OBVIOUS POLITICAL RELEVANCE*, be it the recent militarization of and historic racism endemic to police in the US, this sudden wave of anti-feminism, and a…seemingly recent resurgence of xenophobic and nationalistic sentiment here [I’m in the US] and elsewhere. Sadness and disappointment.

    • Pantalaimon says:

      If it makes you feel better, that is just the standard of comments threads on Eurogamer – it doesn’t really have anything to do with the subject matter, it’s just the pits, reprobates, n’er-do-wells and everyone who was shunned or banned from other sites generally congregates down there – much as they do in the comments threads on YouTube, or anywhere else with a coagulation of hatred. It’s probably best to just avoid it for the sake of your mental health.

    • Pantalaimon says:

      And in the same breath I should add that I have never seen the like on RPS and the discussions that take place here are always healthy, progressive and challenging for all the right reasons.

    • Niko says:

      It’s not that there’s so many of them, it’s that they just often brigade comments, because they have nothing better to do. When you see a huge influx of bigots somewhere, chances are it might be another dumb 4chan “op”.

      • Distec says:

        The paranoia about 4chan and brigading seen here is also pretty disappointing.

        So too is the moaning about the state of the world that the comments apparently prompted, given that this is probably the tamest “backlash” you could probably get on the internet.

        Sadness and disappointment.