Gamasutra: The Art & Business of Making Gamesspacer
View All     RSS
September 18, 2014
arrowPress Releases
September 18, 2014
PR Newswire
View All





If you enjoy reading this site, you might also want to check out these UBM Tech sites:


Dark Matter pulled from Steam, after team is laid off Exclusive
 Dark Matter  pulled from Steam, after team is laid off
October 22, 2013 | By Mike Rose

October 22, 2013 | By Mike Rose
Comments
    19 comments
More: Console/PC, Business/Marketing, Exclusive



Interwave Studios, the company behind the much-discussed Metroid-like Dark Matter, says that it is working on an ending to its game -- but there's a little more to the story.

The Iceberg Interactive-published Dark Matter was pulled from Steam and GOG.com this week, after it emerged that the game did not have a proper ending. Players who reached the end of the game are told "To be continued" -- although no sequel is planned.

Interwave, the studio behind the game, has now said that this abrupt ending was as a result of its Kickstarter failing earlier this year, and that it would be adding an ending in a later patch.

"At present, the end of the game may cause confusion and is not satisfactory," Iceberg CEO Erik Schreuder admitted. "We sincerely apologise for this, as it is not of the standard we would expect. We are working to offer a more conclusive and satisfying ending to the game as we speak and expect a fix to appear as soon we are able to."

However, what the team has failed to disclose is that it isn't working on the title anymore. After the Kickstarter failed earlier this year, most of the Interwave team was let go between July and August, and the vast majority of the original Dark Matter developers are not working on the title any more, according to Gamasutra sources.

A source close to the studio told Gamasutra that Interwave is now a "sleeping company," with only a bare minimum of management at the studio, and insufficient developers to finish the title under current staffing levels. However, it's unclear whether third-parties would be able to finish the game separately of the original team.

UPDATE: Another source close to the studio has told Gamasutra that an external company is now handling the game's ending, and that none of the original developers are still working on the game.

The entire Interwave team, minus two management staffers, were let go during July and August. When the Kickstarter failed, the original idea was to package it up as Dark Matter: Episode 1 and use sales of the game to re-hire the original team and carry onwards -- however, this plan fell through.


Related Jobs

Vicarious Visions / Activision
Vicarious Visions / Activision — Albany, New York, United States
[09.18.14]

Character Artist-Vicarious Visions
Cloud Imperium Games
Cloud Imperium Games — Austin, Texas, United States
[09.17.14]

Lead Network Engineer
Cloud Imperium Games
Cloud Imperium Games — Santa Monica, California, United States
[09.17.14]

Animation Programmer
Cloud Imperium Games
Cloud Imperium Games — SANTA MONICA, California, United States
[09.17.14]

Art Director










Comments


Alejandro Rodriguez
profile image
This story went from outrageous to wholly depressing.

Jason McGoldrick
profile image
Here's the ending, not sure why its not linked.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eTPS_GGhMqk

Rob Wright
profile image
WHAT. THE. HELL.

I almost picked this up this weekend. Glad I didn't, though I feel for the Interwave folks who were laid off.

Ron Dippold
profile image
On the bright side, this isn't a tale of Kickstarter fraud for once.

So basically this is Chapter 1 of 4, it'll never be completed, and they're deceptively selling it at full indie price to milk all they can out of it before everyone found out. Nice.

Scott Lavigne
profile image
How much of the game was complete? I mean, I can understand people being upset with lack of closure I suppose, but it becomes less justifiable the more game you have. I'm assuming that it's very easy/quick to complete for the price point if people are this upset. The follow-up bit about them no longer working on the title is a bit sad, though.

Ron Dippold
profile image
They claim 6-8 hours, upset players claiming 4 hours (that kind of mismatch is fairly common, so that's not a scandal, or it's an industrywide one). 4 hours in, with no warning, you open a door and *thud* wall of text. The end.

Andrew Wallace
profile image
So it's Call of Duty minus a QTE?

Sean Sang
profile image
@ Ron Dippold: It's difficult to judge actual play times, 6-8 may very well be the average for people who take their time with it. I always find people who spend far less time than the average are people who rush through the experience, skip cinematic, skip any text, etc. From a video of the ending I saw, I can see how it would leave players confused and upset. I guess the question is if the game up to that point was enjoyable does it matter that much if the ending is just a wall of text?

Thomas Happ
profile image
It's too bad they released the game unfinished, but on the other hand, it seems never to work out well when an external team takes over development, especially when they don't even have support from the original devs to help guide them through the codebase (having been on both sides of this). I'm thinking the original team would have liked to finish it and is now sitting around helpless as they watch their game drift in mismanaged limbo.

Adam Bishop
profile image
I wish there had been this much anger when Ubisoft cut out the middle of Assassin's Creed 2 so that they could sell it as DLC.

Ron Dippold
profile image
Honestly, by the time I get to the end of any AC game I'm just about sick of it and can go for another year before I get the craving... I've never felt cheated on amount of content there.

Though this makes a good point - I think people would have reacted much better to a missing middle than a missing end. Gone Home is also very short, but the arc feels right, and it's obviously complete as designed, so most people seem okay with that.

Sean Sang
profile image
@ Adam Bishop: I haven't played Assassin's Creed 2 but I would assume cutting the middle out didn't affect the game's story or flow? This to me is like watching a movie that also has an extended cut version you would have to buy on DVD/Blu-ray later to see. For me if the original cut was satisfactory I don't at all feel upset knowing that the creators cut out footage from the film.

Adam Bishop
profile image
It has a huge gap in the plot in the middle that doesn't make any sense. It just leaps forward in time with no warning or explanation.

Dane MacMahon
profile image
I'm all for calling out shady DLC practices, but the Assassin's Creed games are all overly long anyway, and I didn't feel like I missed any story when I played any of the games without DLC.

Mass Effect 3 is a better example. The fact that Prothean character and his missions is DLC on day one is heinous, and Bioware were rightly called out on it.

Richard Bisso
profile image
Kind of funny that the only people left when companies are gutted are "management". Managing what, exactly?

Jesse Tucker
profile image
Where to direct the revenue, I'd assume.

Daneel Filimonov
profile image
Straight into their pockets I presume.

Joseph Moore
profile image
As others have said, managing where the profits go... I once worked at a company that closed its doors, but kept the 4 upper management on staff so that they could rake in all the profit of the game we'd recently finished... good times.

Jason McGoldrick
profile image
Here's the ending link, check it out! I dont know why they didnt post the direct link tbh.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eTPS_GGhMqk


none
 
Comment: