Armello is a sort of Beatrix Potter-meets-Game of Thrones strategy-RPG that Chris played, and liked, last year. A couple of days ago, developer League of Geeks released the game's first major DLC, Usurpers, which adds four new heroes and four new rings, one for each Clan. But for some reason, it's only available for the Steam version of the game. The GOG edition isn't going to get it.
League of Geeks broke the news in a Roadmap: Year Two forum post, although the explanation it provided really doesn't clarify the situation. “We want to ensure that whatever platforms Armello is on, we're providing the best experience as we possibly can. As Armello moves more and more into online services (like Steam inventory and more multiplayer features) and as we begin to roll out our plans for DLC, we've been working closely with GoG on an edition of Armello specific to GoG. The Armello - DRM Free Edition should be up and running on GoG.com now,” director Trent Kusters wrote.
“We've had fantastic meetings with GoG about the future of Armello on the platform and although there's no way for us to provide DLC for DRM Free users or to attempt to retain parity with the Steam version of Armello, Armello DRM Free Edition will see features that best suit a DRM Free experience picked across from other platforms into early-mid 2017, helping LoG & GoG (lol) reach our mutual goal of providing users the best possible DRM Free Armello experience.”
Okay—but why? Steam Workshop integration is obviously going to be a problem on non-Steam platforms, but Usurpers is by all appearances a fairly straightforward expansion, and as far as I know GOG has never had trouble handling such things. Renaming the version on GOG to Armello DRM Free Edition comes off as a disingenuous side-step too. Everything on GOG is DRM-free. That's what it does.
There may be a perfectly good reason for GOG being left out in the cold, and it may be in line for its own unique extras that won't be released on Steam. But beyond the promise of “the best possible DRM free” experience, League of Geeks gave no indication of having any real plan for it. That's bad for owners of Armello, and worse for GOG: Why would anyone buy games there if they risk being left hung out to dry like this, especially when a developer flat-out states that it's impossible to "retain parity" with Steam?
I've emailed GOG and League of Geeks to find out why the DRM-free edition can't be expanded, and what it will get (if anything) instead, but with PAX West set to start tomorrow, it may be awhile before I receive a reply. I'll update if and when I do.
Thanks, Rock, Paper, Shotgun.