The Metro Exodus/Epic Games Store situation really is turning into a right old mess. Over the weekend, a 4A Games developer posted on a Russian games forum saying they were upset with the fan reaction to a game them and the team spent years working on. They then produced a feel ‘eek’ moment when they said: “as a last resort, if all PC players announce a boycott of the Metro, then the next Metro, if it happens, is definitely not on the PC.”
I think we can all understand this comes from a position of passion, and of hurt, but it’s certainly not going to have the desired effect of pacifying the PC community. Quite the opposite, in fact. Needless to say as an individual developer they'll have little say on whether another Metro happens or which platforms it comes to.
Since then, either 4A Games or Deep Silver/Koch Media has come out and issued a statement addressing the employee’s statement. It’s as clear as mud as to who this statement is from as it could easily be attributed to either the developer or the publisher, but reports suggest this is from the publisher’s end.
“The recent decision to move Metro Exodus from Steam to the Epic Game Store was made by Koch Media / Deep Silver alone,” reads the statement from the official Metro Exodus Twitter account.
“The recent comments made by a member of the 4A Games development team do not reflect Deep Silver’s or 4A Games’ view on the future of the franchise. They do reflect the hurt and disappointment of a passionate individual who has seen what was previously nothing but positive goodwill towards his work turn to controversy due to a business decision he had no control over. We respectfully ask that any and all valid feedback over this decision is directed at Koch Media / Deep Silver, and not the developers at 4A Games.
“The future release strategy of the Metro series lies with Koch Media / Deep Silver. Our decision to partner with Epic Games was based on the goal of investing in the future of the series and our development partner at 4A Games. We have every intention of continuing this franchise, and a PC version will always be at the heart of our plans.”
The reaction to the Metro Exodus Epic Store exclusivity is understandable yet massively overblown to anyone still clinging onto reality. Some folks are clearly feeling genuine hatred and anger over what’s a frustrating but not life-changing decision for anyone. The backlash will be hurting 4A Games though, a studio that has put a lot of love into the Metro series over the past decade, only to see all that goodwill evaporate in a matter of weeks.
It’s a sad state of affairs but we have a feeling this is all going to work out in Deep Silver’s favour. A game that was flying comparatively under the radar is now one of the most talked about games on the internet. It’s going to have to be some boycott to stop Metro Exodus being overall less successful than it would’ve been quietly launching on Steam. You’ve got PS4 and Xbox One fans who perhaps haven’t even looked at the series before and now it’s the talk of town.