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GOG Cancels Devotion Launch, Cites ‘Messages from Gamers’

CD Projekt really just having a week.

About six hours ago, Red Candle Games announced that Devotion, a 2019 horror game that was pulled from Steam after it was discovered it featured a controversial reference to China President Xi Jinping and was subsequently review bombed by Chinese players, would be coming to GOG almost two full years after its initial release and removal. The announcement said the game and all of its content would be the same when it launched on the service on Friday, December 18, and would mark the return of a game that had been basically lost to several markets. A physical edition was sold in Taiwan, but Devotion was more or less impossible to find in most territories, so this seemed like a big win all around for the studio and for people who wanted to play the, apparently pretty great, horror game.

Well, that was until GOG announced it would no longer be releasing the game after all. The company (owned by CD Projekt) announced this through a post on Twitter citing “many messages from gamers” as a reason to pull the release. Devotion’s store page Red Candle Games linked to in its own announcement now just redirects to a list of most popular games on the service.

The response on Twitter has been universally negative, with many replies accusing the company of bending to the same pressures that got the game removed from Steam in 2019. The vagueness of the statement certainly opens them up to that sort of interpretation, but when has transparency done CD Projekt any good, yeah?

Hopefully Red Candle Games finds a new storefront to put Devotion on, as that’s two major platforms that have pulled the game due to external pressure.

In other news:

CD Projekt is really just having a week and a half right now, between pulling Devotion and Cyberpunk 2077’s console launch, the company that had garnered a fair bit of good will following the release of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt and its generally pro-consumer approach to issues like DRM is on its back foot for the first time in awhile. Cyberpunk 2077 has been the subject of a fair bit of controversy following its launch last week, as the game was revealed to be near unplayable on the base PlayStation 4 and Xbox One consoles, which CD Projekt Red ensured wouldn’t be played by reviewers before launch by only sending out PC review copies. When review embargo lifted, it was revealed that a writer had experienced a seizure due to one of the game’s Braindance sequences, which has since been patched to no longer use the light patterns that can trigger epileptic seizures, as well as put a specific warning about the scene before the game’s main menu. Oh, and then CD Projekt Red promised refunds to players it had no authorization to offer. Just really stepping on every rake it can here in December 2020.

About the Author

Kenneth Shepard

Kenneth is a Staff Writer at Fanbyte. He still periodically cries about the Mass Effect trilogy years after it concluded.