You might have thought the The Day Before’s sorry saga had ended last year when developer Fntastic, amid claims of misleading marketing and Overwhelmingly Negative Steam reviews, yanked the game from sale and promptly shut its doors just four days into its early access launch. But no, the studio has now reemerged with a lengthy statement blaming the whole thing on a “hate campaign” orchestrated by “certain bloggers”.
It’s not entirely clear why the anonymous voice behind Fntastic’s social media account has chosen now to resurface and defend the supposedly defunct studio, but its newly published tweet offers a lenghty, ten paragraph rebuttal to what it calls “a lot of misinformation… on the internet from supposedly anonymous sources.”
The Day Before – at one time Steam’s most wishlisted game – finally launched into Steam early access last December, following repeated (and sometimes bizarre) delays and frequent accusations it was a scam
Refunds followed and The Day Before’s servers officially went offline forever earlier this week, on 22nd January – but Fntastic clearly isn’t ready to end the story there. Its newly published social media post takes aim at accusations it deceived players (“We worked hard and honestly on the game for five years”), that it deceived investors (“We still have a great relationship with our publisher”), at critical reports from alleged former employees (“Our low churn rate and the fact that half of those who left returned to the company demonstrate our positive work environment”), and it even attempts to claim there was no discrepancy between The Day Before’s trailers and the released product.
“We implemented everything shown in the trailers,” it argues, “from home improvements and a detailed world to off-road vehicles. We only disabled a few minor features, like parkour, due to bugs but planned to include them in the full release”. It also insists the “negative bias instilled by certain bloggers making money on hate affected perceptions of the game”, and that it was this, not the quality of The Day Before’s release, that lead to the studio’s closure.
“Remember the experiment where you’re asked to count pink objects in a room and then recall blue ones?,” it adds, “You won’t remember any. It’s all about focus.”
“By the way,” the statement continues, “after sales closed, many people wrote to us that bloggers had deceived them and they liked the game and asked for access. We also heard that petitions were created to continue development, and on the black market, the game’s price exceeded $200, and some even began to make their own mods”.
Perhaps most remarkably of all though, despite Fntastic’s apparent closure in December, it seems the developer isn’t done yet. “We are grateful to all the senders of emails who expressed support and appeal not to give up and to continue to work,” its statement concludes. “We encourage you to subscribe to our social networks to know what will happen next.”