The War Z
At the time of writing, The War Z has been plucked from Steam. Valve's Doug Lombardi told RPS that Valve have removed the game so that Valve can "work with the developer and have confidence in a new build." They're also offering refunds to purchasers who file a support ticket . The problem? This build of The War Z doesn't seem to match up to the promises its developers have been making.
Steam user Shock4ndAwe captured this image showing the original product description on Steam. It promised maps between "100 and 400 square kilometers." It claims you can create "private servers" and "gain experience and spend it to learn dozen of available skills." These features aren't in there yet. What's more, PCGamesN investigated the size of War Z's map and found it to be around 10 sq km large - far smaller than promised.
In an extraordinary interview on GameSpy , executive producer of The War Z, Sergey Titov attempted to defend the Steam listing, saying "I think there's difference between false claims and perception of the text."
When challenged on the "up to 100 players" claim (only 50 players could play simultaneously at the time), he said "let's be frank: when you read "up to 100 players" -- what does it mean to you personally? I mean, for me it doesn't mean that I will play with 99 other players. Really :) And yes game supports 100 players -- heck, it supports actually over 400 players per server as of today. Do we have servers launched with this number of slots? No we don't, because this is not what our players WANT."
The War Z creators, Hammerpoint, have since released a statement that blames players for expecting the features clearly labelled on Steam. “We also want to extend our apologies to all players who misread information about game features," they said. The Steam listing has since been altered.
Before The War Z was pulled, Kotaku reported that a patch had upped the respawn time to four hours and added microtransactions that would let players pay to circumvent it. Players took to Reddit to express their anger.
It feels like this story still has a long way to run. In other news, Bohemia Interactive continue to work on a standalone version of Arma 2 mega-mod, Day Z.