Never mix early access and paid-for DLC
It’s only been a few days since Godus Wars launched on Steam Early Access, and it’s already managed to cause an uproar. As 22Cans’ early access follow-up to the infamously abandoned Godus, Wars has the difficult task of trying to build bridges between the studio and its betrayed community… so what better way to kick things off than include microtransactions!
When it launched, Godus Wars was given for free to those who owned Godus, or cost $11.99/£10.99 for those who didn’t. There was also a $4.99 microtransaction available in-game, which added a whole new continent with 40 new missions, a new opponent, and a load of new units. For any other game that’d be generous, but with Godus Wars it made a lot of people quite rightly angry.
The players took to the forums and Steam reviews (which now sit at a ‘mostly negative’ rating) to complain. Microtransactions in an early access game that really should be an apology for how badly 22Cans fucked up Godus was never going to go down well.
In response to this, 22Cans CEO Simon Phillips has announced via Steam that the microtransactions in Godus Wars are being dropped, and that the extra continent will be available to all for free:
In the mean time, its been brought to our attention that the extra content being a premium add on really isn’t a popular choice. Whilst we think that it does represent good value, especially considering that Godus Wars has been delivered as a free update to hundreds of thousands of users and the lower purchase price of the main game we understand previous Godus owners frustrations with this.
While I commend the decision, as it shows they are somewhat listening to player feedback, the comment about thinking the microtransactions as ‘good value’ strikes me as odd. 22Cans also thought the original Godus was good enough value in its unfinished, abandoned state, so I don’t believe it gets to judge value for money just yet. Maybe once it has finished a game to an acceptable state it’ll get a say, but not right now.
22Cans has got a lot of ground to cover before anyone trusts it, so hopefully this decision is just the start.