The Walking Dead: Betrayal halts development and will be pulled from Steam just three months after launch

The Walking Dead: Betrayal - Rick Grimes skin detail
(Image credit: Other Oceans Interactive)

The Walking Dead: Betrayal, a social deception-survival game about zombies and worse (the "worse" in this case being non-zombified other people), is coming to a premature end. Skybound Games and developer Other Ocean Interactive announced today that it has decided to halt development of the game, which just launched in early access in September, and remove it from Steam completely.

"Despite the hard work put into the game, we were not able to find a path to build the spirited community of backstabbers we originally envisioned," Skybound wrote. "On December 11, we will begin the process of removing the game from Steam, and as of December 15 the game will be shut down. All players who purchased the game will receive a full refund."

I thought The Walking Dead: Betrayal looked like it had a lot of promise when I first laid eyes on it in July. It bore a number of similarities to Other Ocean's previous game, the well-regarded Project Winter (which we once called "the best bullshitting sim on PC") but added the twist of a zombie outbreak. That added pressure meant survivors wouldn't be able to take their time and think too much when deciding how to handle one crisis or another, and it also offered life-after-death playability for those who guessed wrong about who the in-house killer is.

But as Skybound said, there just wasn't an audience. A small spike of players in September shortly after beta testing began quickly evaporated, and over the past 30 days the average concurrent player count has been stuck in single digits. There's some disappointment from players in the comments in response to the announcement, but for a game that relies on a deep player base for viability, numbers like that make it a complete non-starter.

Anyone who purchased The Walking Dead: Betrayal on Steam can get a refund through Steam's normal process. If you picked it up elsewhere, you'll need to contact customer support for whatever retailer you went for, and if you run into grief on that front you can submit a ticket with Skybound support directly. Skybound confirmed that everyone who purchased the game will be eligible for a refund, regardless of time played.

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.