[MESSAGE FROM DEVS]: We hear you. Also, Forge is awesome!
Dear Forge players and purchasers,
I want you to know that everyone at Dark Vale Games has been reading these forums. Honestly, as gamers, we understand that this F2P situation can be a rough transition. We know what you're saying and how you're feeling. The truth is, we have feelings too, and it's a little heartbreaking to read some of the posts in these threads.
The biggest complaint about Forge, time and time again, has been the lack of a big active player base. We're an indie studio made up of a handful of people that had a dream to make a PvP game that everyone could play without grinding for levels. We made the game, but we didn't have a big budget for marketing, so the playerbase was never all that it could be (all that you wanted it to be).
Making Forge F2P has solved our game's single biggest issue, and it is going to improve your experience dramatically. People will now always have a ton of other players waiting to battle.
Obviously, we couldn't just make the game free without rewarding all the players that purchased the game before the transition. To that end, we gave everyone that purchased the game for $20 and less (Forge has been on sale at every price point imaginable) the Starter Pack, which is a $15 value. Ultimate Edition purchasers ($60 value) get everything we're currently selling for free. Founders also get a special hook up. We thought this would be fair, but feedback about the Starter Pack has been not so great. As a result, we're going to TRY working on an EXCLUSIVE armor set that we plan on giving to everyone that purchased the game IN ADDITION TO THE STARTER PACK. As with all things game dev related, this exclusive armor will come "Soon"TM. We're still working out the details, and there's a texture related memory bug that needs to get fixed before we can make this happen, but at least you know where we're at. We absolutely do not want you to feel like you didn't get what you paid for. Most importantly, we just want you to enjoy Forge, so we're going to do what we can to make you all happy.
Forge is currently better than ever. It's become so much more than the game you originally paid for. We've added feature after feature, month after month, building Forge into a hulking beast of PvP awesomeness. And it doesn't stop there. Our next update will add Guilds, a key component for competitive play that our players have been clamoring for. Our goal is to give players everything they want, and honestly, we've done a pretty awesome job living up to that with such a small team.
So, to those of you upset: Sorry. Our bad. We tried giving you everything you wanted and we're going to continue along that path. If that will never be enough (I know it hurts seeing something you paid for become free, despite other perks that come from that transition), you are more than welcome to voice your opinion. Feel free to boycott us and charge at us with your pitchforks. It would be great if you didn't do that on our Steam forums - like I said, seeing these comments here is heartbreaking after pouring our lives into a game we were so passionate about - but I believe in free speech so I'm not going to make an effort to stop people from doing that. But please try to see things from our perspective. We've been working incredibly hard to make an awesome game for you. Forge is now better, more feature rich than ever. Almost everything we've added has been directly requested by you, our fans. And when we finally decided to literally give our hard work away for free so that our fans had lots of people to play with (finally!), we come onto the Steam forums to only see complaints. Like I said, heartbreaking. But we know where you're coming from and still want to do right by you.
We aren't swindling anyone. We aren't scamming anyone. When TF2 went free, Valve didn't give me a refund. We are just regular people. We are gamers trying to make the most incredible PvP game of all time. We're putting our souls into this game, and we're doing it just to make you happy. And we're going to keep doing it until you're grinning ear from ear, despite any negativity thrown our way.
To those of you that stood up for us: You guys are freaking awesome. Thank you. Thank you all a thousand times. Seeing you sticking up for us is like a beacon of hope shining out of the darkness. You know who you are, but please realize how thankful we are for having you in our community. It's really hard to see so many people upset (lots of whom never actually played Forge) after we've worked so hard for so long.
tl;dr - We have read your posts and want to make you all happy. We absolutely didn't want to make anyone upset, so we're sorry if you were one of the people that felt jipped. Making a new, exclusive armor set is going to take some time, but we'll try to get that ready for you. In the meantime, go back and play Forge - it's better than ever and our community is bigger than ever!