“Who?” you interrupt, because it’s a Friday and we’re all tired.
–is a small games developer not many have even heard of, I continue, determined. Digital Homicide is a peddler of what is commonly slagged off as “shovelware,” that is, cheaply-produced and poorly-made games that do little but line the bottom ranks of Valve’s Steam marketplace, like disreputable hamster bedding. You may disagree with that assessment of the developer’s business model, but plenty of Steam customers don’t, negatively reviewing many of the titles in its sizable catalog of such fine works as Krog Wars and Wyatt Derp.
Now, there’s nothing inherently wrong with producing cheap crap for a quick dime. Even hamster bedding serves a purpose. My personal favorite in this arena is low-budget film production company The Asylum, best known for its Sharknado series. But if you’re entering into that side of the business, you can’t then get incensed that people don’t totally and unironically adore the stuff you put out. Which is why, when Digital Homicide decided to sue critic Jim Sterling and (more recently) 100 anonymous Steam commenters who left negative reviews and served a subpoena to Valve for the users’ personal details, the collective response from the internet was “wow, chill, guys.”
Valve, on the other hand, has gone a step further, and today summarily pulled all of Digital Homicide’s titles from its Steam storefront. Independent developer Rami Ismail posted these screenshots of the removed titles:
It seems that since, every Digital Homicide game has been removed from Steam’s service. pic.twitter.com/Qzzzl8vvd5
— Rami Ismail (@tha_rami) September 17, 2016
Speaking with TechRaptor, Valve representative Doug Lombardi confirmed that the delisting was in response to the lawsuits: “Valve has stopped doing business with Digital Homicide for being hostile to Steam customers.”
We’ll see where the situation evolves from here!
Disclosure: Rami Ismail is a personal acquaintance and a patron of Critical Distance, a site I help to manage which is in no way related to Zam.