2023 Scam Award goes to

"Today, we announce the closure of Fntastic studio. Unfortunately, The Day Before has failed financially, and we lack the funds to continue. All income received is being used to pay off debts to our partners. We invested all our efforts, resources, and man-hours into the development of The Day Before, which was our first huge game. We really wanted to release new patches to reveal the full potential of the game, but unfortunately, we don't have the funding to continue the work.

"It's important to note that we didn't take any money from the public during the development of The Day Before; there were no pre-orders or crowdfunding campaigns. We worked tirelessly for five years, pouring our blood, sweat, and tears into the game. At the moment, the future of The Day Before and Propnight is unknown, but the servers will remain operational. We apologize if we didn't meet your expectations. We did everything within our power, but unfortunately, we miscalculated our capabilities. Creating games is an incredibly challenging endeavor." https://x.com/FntasticHQ/status/1734265789237338453?s=20

PC Gamer link about the closure: https://www.pcgamer.com/the-day-bef...ortunately-we-miscalculated-our-capabilities/

Not everyone follows games and their updates closely, so I can see people jumping in on games like this of pure interest. THOSE are the ones these scams are prying on, as I see it. Just like with any phone scams or similar. I'm angry this is a thing and hopefully, Valve and similar platforms implement stronger measures to combat these types of scams. I see no reason as to why The Day Before is still on the Steam store! (yay!; they removed it)
 
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Well the game is taken off the shelf, you can’t buy it anymore via Steam. Not sure about other retailers but I’m betting they fully removed it from sale everywhere.

My condolences go out to the people who worked hard to make the game. It seems like the devs really believed in it. Sorry it turned out this way, I’m curious to know what happened behind the scenes that caused all of this. Perhaps mismanagement or corpos got too involved in the decision making process. That’s typically what happens in these instances, or maybe it was just a big scam this whole time.

The game looks painfully boring, all of the gameplay I’ve seen on it just showed a huge empty city with a few cars to loot. One of my favorite DayZ streamers said it was kinda good, then took it back a few hours later once he realized how empty the game is.
 
Well the game is taken off the shelf, you can’t buy it anymore via Steam. Not sure about other retailers but I’m betting they fully removed it from sale everywhere.
Article:
"A few hours after the studio announced its closure, sales of The Day Before on Steam were halted"
Man, I just watched Home Alone and got back to see this. Ahhh, that Christmas spirit :grin:
 
Lots of users called them out on it before they released the bait & switch game... They kept saying it wasn't like Tarkov... when that is what they released. Every asset in the game was bought off the market place... it was 5 years "work"

Every game this company has made has lost support almost right away. They would dump the products.

 

Zloth

Community Contributor
Steam should simply refund every person that bought the game after release and remove it from the library. This is an online game, right? There isn't going to be a server to play on pretty soon so people that like the game aren't going to miss out on much. Valve never pays the developers anything.

Somebody WILL still get burned, though: whoever fronted the money to get this thing developed. They should be in a much better position to see if these developers really tried to make a game or not.
 

ZedClampet

Community Contributor
"Today, we announce the closure of Fntastic studio. Unfortunately, The Day Before has failed financially, and we lack the funds to continue. All income received is being used to pay off debts to our partners. We invested all our efforts, resources, and man-hours into the development of The Day Before, which was our first huge game. We really wanted to release new patches to reveal the full potential of the game, but unfortunately, we don't have the funding to continue the work.

"It's important to note that we didn't take any money from the public during the development of The Day Before; there were no pre-orders or crowdfunding campaigns. We worked tirelessly for five years, pouring our blood, sweat, and tears into the game. At the moment, the future of The Day Before and Propnight is unknown, but the servers will remain operational. We apologize if we didn't meet your expectations. We did everything within our power, but unfortunately, we miscalculated our capabilities. Creating games is an incredibly challenging endeavor." https://x.com/FntasticHQ/status/1734265789237338453?s=20

PC Gamer link about the closure: https://www.pcgamer.com/the-day-bef...ortunately-we-miscalculated-our-capabilities/

Not everyone follows games and their updates closely, so I can see people jumping in on games like this of pure interest. THOSE are the ones these scams are prying on, as I see it. Just like with any phone scams or similar. I'm angry this is a thing and hopefully, Valve and similar platforms implement stronger measures to combat these types of scams. I see no reason as to why The Day Before is still on the Steam store!

If you go back to the random thoughts monthly post for December and look at the games I said I was interested in (3rd post in the thread), I said that my prediction for this game was that it was going to get very negative reviews and be taken off the market.

So what do I win? @Brian Boru @Frindis ?

By the way, Valve is accepting refund requests from anyone regardless of playtime, so the studio isn't going to be getting big money from this. Hopefully everyone refunds.

Honestly, I don't think it was a scam attempt. I've seen almost this exact scenario go down multiple times in the past. In fact, it wouldn't surprise me at all to learn that this was secretly a solo dev who got carried away promising the world like they did with No Man's Sky. The reason I thought the game would come off the market is because of the mental stability of the developer, which was severely lacking based on the sum of his recent communications.

I could give you at least a short list of indie games that this same scenario, with some cosmetic differences, played out with, and probably another short list of crowdfunded games where the same thing happened except the games never came out at all.

People underestimate how hard it is to make games. They make promises. They panic. They get desperate. They have break downs. People then think they were scammed. No, you just bought in to someone's impossible dream.

The Day Before probably wasn't shut down due to a scam. It was probably shut down because the developer was crushed under the weight of his own disastrous failure. That's what I was thinking when I made my prediction.
 
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So what do I win?

Why, a free copy of the game, of course!

Honestly, I don't think it was a scam attempt

When I had a quick look, I'm inclined to agree that it looks a lot more like someone getting in over their head, and then panicking when reality came crashing down. However, releasing it for $40 smells, so I wouldn't put it all to dumb innocence.

Every game this company has made has lost support almost right away.

Both of them? Looked to me like the first was mildly okay, but like so many respected and legit launches, it dwindled quickly—no bad smell there in itself. I see the pub's experience is with casual and mobile, so there's a good chance they weren't capable of keeping a watchful eye.

Pub & dev won't make much out of this. Steam won't tot up December sales until sometime in January at the earliest, and maybe later—they won't be in any rush to give it out ;)
I haven't seen their contract, so dunno if there's any penalty for launching a game which is clearly a different genre, and also low quality.
 
What confuses me about all the news is: It seems Fntastic also created some games before, so… were they scam too? If not then I might stick to @ZedClampet ’s opinion.

Yet I am wondering now… Can just anyone create something and put it on steam for any amount of money? If so, I will pay more attention of what I‘m buying there in the future :oops:
 
Both of them? Looked to me like the first was mildly okay, but like so many respected and legit launches, it dwindled quickly—no bad smell there in itself. I see the pub's experience is with casual and mobile, so there's a good chance they weren't capable of keeping a watchful eye.
according to video I linked to, they worked on about 5 games. 4 of them were dumped soon after release, the other one might be the one you are talking about.
 

ZedClampet

Community Contributor
Yet I am wondering now… Can just anyone create something and put it on steam for any amount of money? If so, I will pay more attention of what I‘m buying there in the future :oops:
This is true. To get a game on Steam, you pay a one time fee of $100. After that, you can put as many games on Steam as you like. That's how there were 77 games released the other day
When I had a quick look, I'm inclined to agree that it looks a lot more like someone getting in over their head, and then panicking when reality came crashing down. However, releasing it for $40 smells, so I wouldn't put it all to dumb innocence.
Oh, I think in the end he tried to grab what he could and run. But even that wasn't completely a scam, as they posted on Steam that they had worked with Valve and that refunds were going to be issued to anyone who requested one. Of course, "working with Valve" may have meant "Valve contacted us and we're screwed". There's no telling.
 
As soon as i was able to log on today i went searching for a post on this topic.

Yea this "The Day Before" is by far the worst game disaster story i would say in recent memory (beyond 2023). I think this is just the extremely worst case scenario of an already bigger issue of many games coming out and just completely bombing.

Outside of those that actually did buy it (who are also getting refunds) i dont think most of us thought this was going to be any good. I mean all the red flags were there, unknown small studio with big project, trademark accusations, weird videos of the game etc. Honestly this game made Gollum look like BG3.

I would also like to point out that devs like DayZ and Rust jumping in to mock the developers is in bad taste. Its one thing for players, i think its different when its another developer. Esp. ones for games that arent that good in the first place. (sorry i dont like dayz or rust lol)
 

Zloth

Community Contributor
....who got carried away promising the world like they did with No Man's Sky.
No no no no, No Man's Sky promised way more than one world! It's their new game that promises a world. ;)
Yet I am wondering now… Can just anyone create something and put it on steam for any amount of money? If so, I will pay more attention of what I‘m buying there in the future :oops:
It's really cheap to do. Valve DOES check the game out a little bit, but I think they are looking for viruses, uninstall programs that can wipe out system files, and stuff like that. They certainly aren't checking to see if a game works properly, except maybe starting it to make sure it can run.
 

ZedClampet

Community Contributor
@ZedClampet I'm slightly interested. It looks quite nice and Murray didn't seem to hype it up too much, though the whole "without boundaries" and huge mountains talk got stale quite fast. While it looks like they will nail the atmosphere, I'm a bit skeptical about the low-quality barren-looking areas you can see in the gameplay footage and if those areas will stand out as multiple sore thumbs to the more lush areas exploring-wise. Murray can talk about variety until he is blue in his face, but if you fly on your cute dragons over vast terrains of just plain dirt, rocks, sand, and grass it is going to get boring fast. They'll have to be sure that the majority of the terrain will be interesting for building/exploring.

I did like to see those small huts and boats. Looks like you can make a larger community. Didn't like building animation though, looks unnecessary and kind of defeats the purpose of snapping building blocks together that you normally see in similar games. Hopefully, it was just to show off that you CAN build, but not necessarily how you'll do it when it releases, or maybe it was done after the snapping, that could be also so I'll give them some slack about it.

That fire on the mountain might point to us being able to build on top of it, which we obviously should be able to do. I want to be able to build a castle on top of it and roll rocks down from the mountains destroying those small peasant huts if they don't pay me the monthly taxes.
 

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