In a weird turn of events, developer Xaviant has decided to pull the plug on their new game, The Culling 2 and focus on its predecessor The Culling 1. The move comes after heavy fan backlash after development on the first game ceased, in favour of a new battle-royale sequel.
The battle-royale genre of multiplayer games is the elephant in the room at the moment across the game industry. Wherever you look, publishers and indie devs alike are trying to become the next PUBG, the next Fortnite. But this venture is anything but a sure-fire journey to success, and we just witnessed another victim of this.
Xaviant, the independent developer behind last year’s The Culling, have fallen prey in trying to streamline their unique approach at the battle-royale genre. The studio decided to simply halt all development for The Culling and focus on its sequel. The Culling 2 wasn’t a refinement of the foundation found in its predecessor however but to the dismay of its fanbase, it was seen as a rip-off, a clone of popular battle-royale games.
Both, the decision to no longer support The Culling and the tactic to imitate successful games didn’t go well with gamers. A tremendous wave of disdain by players of The Culling 2 led to the game receiving dismal user reviews and an almost non-existent playerbase, only days after its release. A death sentence for any sole multiplayer game.
It looks like Xaviant took a hard look in the mirror and basically admitted that while The Culling wasn’t the blockbuster hit the developer wanted, it still managed to reach an audience who enjoyed the unique features and mechanics found. Josh Van Veld, Director of Operations at Xaviant took to a candid and honest update in a new Youtube video, directed at the community and addressed the state of The Culling games.
The changes are significant. Xaviant is pulling The Culling 2 from digital stores on all platforms, PC, PS4 and Xbox One, and is continuing development of The Culling 1. The Culling 1 will be revived in its Day One version, the state of the game as it launched out of Early Access in October last year. Xaviant will however work on this “original” version of The Culling and turn it into a Free-to-Play title with a future update. A decision the studio sees necessary to get increase the game’s playerbase.
Users who purchased The Culling 2 will receive refunds, so after all it looks like The Culling is getting a second chance at becoming the game the fans wanted it be.
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