In Case of Emergency, Release Raptor goes F2P
A few days ago, Arcen Games latest title In Case of Emergency, Release Raptor entered Steam Early Access. It now has been pulled from Early Access and released as a free to play title, as is.
On August 27th, CEO of Arcan Games, Chris Park made an incredibly open and detailed announcement on Steam. The announcement stated the game was being pulled from the service. Anyone who had bought the game up until that point could get a refund using Steam's refund service.
A long story short, Park saw the game as being too much of a risk financially. The game needed to be a financial success at launch -- otherwise, Arcen Games would end up bankrupt. The possibility of bankruptcy is something that Park has had to deal with in the past, and he certainly does not want a repeat of the experience.
After looking through the numbers of sales, expenses, future costs and interest in the game, Park decided he had no choice but to pull the game and refund anyone who bought it.
Why Free to Play?
Today Park announced on Steam, that the game has been pulled from Early Access, but released as a Free to Play title. While this was not Park's initial intent, it was advised by Steam themselves. After the first announcement on August 27th, fans took to the Steam forums.
Many of them stated they didn't want a refund or for the game to be pulled. It was the community's requests that led to Steam deciding it is best for the game to be Free to Play. As such, it released the Alpha 16 build, and no further updates will be developed.
What is next for Arcen Games?
While clearly disappointed about In Case of Emergency, Release Raptor, Park stated they are getting straight to work on A.I Wars 2: Rise from Ashes. This title is going to be a Kickstarter Project, and anyone can send an e-mail to be notified when it goes live.
Park also said that if they were to continue work on In Case of Emergency, Release Raptor at a later date, it would be released as In Case of Emergency, Release Raptor 2. There is, however, no definite sign on whether that's a possibility.
I may not have been enamored by In Case of Emergency, Release Raptor, as indicated by my preview, but I saw future potential. I would have liked to be able to see how the game shaped as development progressed. Sadly that is no longer possible.
This entire story shows us the difficulties and hard decisions that indie devs have to make. While we often hear of success stories, we don't hear such open ones from the other end of the spectrum. It has been a real insight and eye opener of the challenges can come with video game development.