PLEASE NOTE: The following is a response I wrote to Marek Rosa, Creator of Miner Wars, regarding a comment that he replied to on the recent Rock Paper Shotgun article released about Miner Wars. I wrote a lengthy response to try and back up some various claims I made and to give a thought out response, but the text was much too long to post in RPS's comment section, So I'm going to post it here in order that I can actually get my point across in full. To anyone that has been following some of the discussions about Miner Wars, basically this is a summary of some of the rather shady and ignorant actions that the Developer's have shown, so sorry if it seems like I'm beating a dead horse, But I still feel these are issues that were never cleared up and should be cleared up.
Here's The Article I commented on: http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2013/03/21/miner-wars-2081-source-code-made-available-to-modders/#respond
I suggest that you read the comments that I (ooktar) and Marek Rosa posted to better understand the following wall of text.
First off, I hadn't heard of Miner Wars 2081 til only a few months prior to its release on steam. I got their other game Miner Wars: Arena in the Bundle In A Box and I thought it was actually pretty fun, so I looked up the developers of the game and found that they were making this. I thought it looked pretty cool, but it was only in alpha back then and I decided to hold off until there was more implemented in the game and actually ended up forgetting about it altogether.
Then about a month later, I saw it was gonna be coming out on steam and got stoked about it again, So I went to the games website to check it out again and thought about getting it before it hit steam. I decided to check it out at desura and that's when I saw that there were several comments talking about the game's Always Online requirement. Being someone who lives in the boondocks with ♥♥♥♥♥♥ satellite internet, Any sort of internet requirement is a big factor for me as I suffer from both strict bandwidth caps and an inconsistent connection. It's put me off of buying several games including SimCity, Diablo III, and until recently the various Ubisoft Uplay infested games.
But what confused me was that nowhere on the desura page did it say anything about a constant internet requirement, I went back to the game's website and on the front page of the website it stated one of the features was DRM free. After looking around some more I looked at the game's about page and sure enough, Near the very bottom, Not only did it say it needed a constant Internet connection, It said it needed a constant internet connection literally on the same line it says the game is DRM free.
So after trying to put my exploded brain back together, I figured I'd check the forums to see if there was some sort of explanation and sure enough there were several topics talking about it. Various people have called them out on, but yet they insisted that the game is DRM free despite the internet requirement. To add to the confusion, they then went on to post various excuses for the online requirement, first stating that it calculates various things only on the server, then saying ridiculous things like how the game would just be too big for a computer so they have to so various things server side, then saying that the game's technically designed for multi-player and its for convenience, then finally admitting that its to prevent piracy, then eventually taking it back and starting over again. They even at one point actually had to ask people why they should implement an offline mode, just to show how out of touch with they're audience they really are.
Just gonna state this fact here. DRM stands for Digital Right Management. If I am forced to connect to your game servers in order to play your game, you are then Digitally Managing my Rights to play your game. You can call a shovel a guitar if you want, Its still a ♥♥♥♥ing shovel
So after reading the various responses from the developer, I was eventually put off and decided to wait for the steam release, figuring maybe by that time the developer's would grow some sense or something and the Online requirement would be gone. Sure Enough, the game was released, but of course no where on the steam page did it state anything about the online requirement, and even surer than that, people immediately hit the forums to talk about it. People were posting various things from not being able to play the game because they couldn't connect to the server, to simply feeling ripped of because of not knowing ahead of time about the requirement.
The Developers eventually responded, again claiming it wasn't DRM and that it stated "clearly" on their website that it always required an internet connection. If people are buying the game through steam, they're usually going to go off of whatever information happens to be on the Steam Store page. They're generally not gonna go as far as going to the games website and as such they shouldn't have to. Eventually they updated the steam page, but it still wasn't clear as it was in the system requirements at the bottom of the page as opposed to being in the game description.
More fiasco ensued as eventually a Petition was made to get the requirement removed, as well as claims by various members that the developer's were "censoring" people by removing comments from various places like Youtube and their own Forum. Of course, rather than address these claims and try and bring some closure to the situation, they pretty much shrugged it off with a very backhanded joke and dismissed the claims completely. If someone accuses you of something like censoring someone, the last thing you do is respond with a joke on how you want to "Rule The World."
Eventually, the petition grew, more claims arose, a couple of ♥♥♥♥♥♥ reviews came out, and eventually low and behold, The the game was patched for offline mode. Whether it was people complaining or the dev's grew some sense (based on your response to my first comment, that's highly unlikely). Unfortunately at that point I was over it. The completely backhanded treatment of both the game and it's customers was more than enough to put me off of this and any other game that Keen software (and You mister Rosa) shall be coming out with.
So with all that said, No I'm not a "previous employee" or your "competition" or a troll or even a Dissatisfied customer for that matter. I am simply someone who saw what looked like an interesting game, only to find that it was developed by an incredibly shady developer and decided to act on it. To anyone that wants proof to my claims can easily check the Miner Wars Steam forums (Or your own Websites Forums) where there'e a slew of topics on the matter and someone even made a topic pointing to various examples of the developer's unprofessional attitude.
Mr Marek Rosa, you could've easily responded to my comment by addressing some of the issues I brought up and perhaps bring some closure to the situation, but instead you responded with the same arrogance and disregard that you have shown since the beginning, thus proving my points about your sensitivity to criticism and your complete lack of a professional attitude. And as other's already said, people who want to buy the game will read this article and then see how instead of politely engaging me, you opted for snide remarks and as such, will likely be turned off from buying the game.
My point was never to try and hurt your sales, but to inform any of your potential customers of your negligence. From what I've heard, there's much more wrong with the game DRM aside. Poor optimization, slow servers, a sandbox game with no actual sandbox mode. Apparently there's an even bigger drama about how apparently Miner Wars was going to be an MMO, then after a bunch of people had already pre ordered it, they decided to make it two games instead and they gave everyone who pre ordered it this game, and then made them pre order the MMO again, but I don't actually know a lot about that so I won't get into that. This is about the various actions that I have witnessed and so long as you keep up this amateur behavior, the only thing that will really hurt your sales is you.