One of the most effective ways to show displeasure with a company or product is to refuse to buy it. If you don’t like something a creator says or does then don’t support them. Gaming offers even more recourse in the form of user reviews. Fans have learned to utilize these to vocalize displeasure with any and all aspects of an end product. An issue that 2064: Read Only Memories developer, Midboss has first hand experience with.
Back in January amid the chaotic political climate of the new Trump administration, Midboss took a stand against the alt-right. Tweeting on January 29th, the team declared, “If you voted for trump[sic] or support his facist[sic] regime please don’t play our game… Just go fuck off!”
Politics Over PR
The team was immediately met with harsh criticism over their polarizing statement. Regardless, they continued to defend their position, despite the negative fallout because they believed it was the right thing to do.
Unable to sway their political viewpoint, outraged gamers took to Metacritic to instead attack their game. The PlayStation 4 version of 2064: Read Only Memories has been flooded with negative reviews. Most seem to only criticize the game directly, but there are a few who are openly punishing the developers for their beliefs.
Over on One Angry Gamer, it was reported that Midboss had apologized over the controversy in an effort to improve their score. Naturally, this drew more attention to the issue and lead to more unfavorable reviews and considerable mocking on Twitter.
However, the team clarified in a later Tweet that they were merely asking for people who’ve actually played the game to leave an honest review.
The Metacritic user scores continues to fluctuate. Currently, the team can only dig their heels in and hope their supporters will prove to be just as vocal as their detractors. It’s an ugly situation that demonstrates why most creators rely on symbolism to get their messages across. People will still shit on their work, but at least they have to try a little harder when they do.
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