The SOD2 You Imagined

Mystyk

Skilled Survivor
Staff member
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Australia
#81
I remember that from the old forum. Something about "stealing an idea," or something from one of his books and not acknowledging him, when in fact he wasn't the first to think it up, he didn't invent it, it'd been done before IRL. I think it was over the whole Cleo drop thing.
If only we had access to the forum :(
 

Kiel555

Missing Survivor
Joined
Jan 21, 2018
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Fresno, California
#82
There was a falling out and he left the project. There was info about it on the old forum but good luck finding anything now as far as specifics.
He was brought in during YOSE and that's where the cleo drops came from. He was supposed to be on board for SoD2 but something happened and he left, I don't remember the details.
Oh. I missed that part. I thought he was still with the UL team. I read all his zombie books but don't recall anything like the CLEO drop happening. Even an intro movie would be nice. Where you begin with 4 survivors and you're on a small plane and crash land at a municipal airport with zeds all around. Pilot dies of course but that's how your game begins.
 

odf14

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#83
I remember that from the old forum. Something about "stealing an idea," or something from one of his books and not acknowledging him, when in fact he wasn't the first to think it up, he didn't invent it, it'd been done before IRL. I think it was over the whole Cleo drop thing.
If only we had access to the forum :(
This. He popped into a thread to claim that the CLEO idea had been taken directly from one of his books (because, you know, air drops of supplies had never been done before), that he was the one who had come up with the language used for the drops (in order, callsign of the pilot, altitude of the dropping aircraft, and grid coordinates of the planned drop - all of which were standard aviatorese, so claiming he "invented" the jargon was a bit of a stretch), and claiming he hadn't been given any credit for it. He and Sanya had a quite ugly, albeit brief, public spat about it in that thread, with all of the ugliness being on his side of things.
 

Kiel555

Missing Survivor
Joined
Jan 21, 2018
Likes
953
Location
Fresno, California
#84
This. He popped into a thread to claim that the CLEO idea had been taken directly from one of his books (because, you know, air drops of supplies had never been done before), that he was the one who had come up with the language used for the drops (in order, callsign of the pilot, altitude of the dropping aircraft, and grid coordinates of the planned drop - all of which were standard aviatorese, so claiming he "invented" the jargon was a bit of a stretch), and claiming he hadn't been given any credit for it. He and Sanya had a quite ugly, albeit brief, public spat about it in that thread, with all of the ugliness being on his side of things.
Did he happen to say what CLEO stood for? Haha.
 

Kiel555

Missing Survivor
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Fresno, California
#86
This. He popped into a thread to claim that the CLEO idea had been taken directly from one of his books (because, you know, air drops of supplies had never been done before), that he was the one who had come up with the language used for the drops (in order, callsign of the pilot, altitude of the dropping aircraft, and grid coordinates of the planned drop - all of which were standard aviatorese, so claiming he "invented" the jargon was a bit of a stretch), and claiming he hadn't been given any credit for it. He and Sanya had a quite ugly, albeit brief, public spat about it in that thread, with all of the ugliness being on his side of things.
There was more to CLEO than just a standard supply drop. It was as if some think tank was running an experiment of sorts. The weapons were specially marked and gave the sense that their "efficiency" was being recorded. Someone was testing a new generation of weapons specifically made for fighting the zeds and "we" used those weapons and supplies before the ground team did. The ground team was no doubt lost but CLEO was automated so it just located radio activity and dropped supplies. My theory on all this of course.

Anyways, I can see why Bourne was upset.
 

True Savage

Exiled Survivor
Joined
Jun 23, 2018
Likes
570
#89
-well one thing I cared more about is them continuing where sod 1 left off
-adding more freak zombies. My dad thought there was gonna be glider zombies and while that never happened it would be so badass to see terrorsaur or bat like zombies. They can pick up the survivors and drop them from really high up. I think it would be funny but frustrating for every time you get back up it just swoops down for you again and you are caught in this never ending loop unless you can get to a vehicle or reset the game
-keep the same characters from the previous games. I know we had bigfoot and Lilly but that is barely enough.
-speaking of bigfoot. I was really hoping to see what would happen after the lifeline story. Did the city get nuked or what and if it did. Is bigfoot actually coming for me or is he just an edgelord trying to scare me.
-last I can think of is for architecture to make more sense. It was a nitpick I had with sod 1 I mentioned before and it may have been fixed idk. But seriously every single building besides houses and two story office buildings didn't have bathrooms. Not even the restaurants including the one this forum is named after. why did some entrances to things face away from where people would normally be.
 

demonbreather

Missing Survivor
Joined
Aug 9, 2018
Likes
57
#91
Is it sad that I'd be really absurdly happy to see "survivors can attack with weapons in their right hands now" in the next patch notes? Sigh. There are larger issues, but those are discussed more commonly. I want some right handed survivors who can change their clothes once in a while. I want there to be an element of delegating responsibilities. I want so much more from SoD2. Y'know, like a goddamned story or something... Unfortunately, if any of the changes I'd personally like to see happen to come along, they're all gonna cost 10-15 bucks a pop. Shit.
 

demonbreather

Missing Survivor
Joined
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#92
I played a few more hours with the new patch, didn't notice any glaring issues, but I recalled something that always sort of bugged me without putting it into words -- Ever since the story moments in the first game where the threat of turning was strongly emphasized like Sam's mission for example (trying to avoid spoilers even though I'm sure everyone here is intimately familiar with SoD1), I've always wanted to be able to see my failed survivors as a part of a horde later on in the game. If they weren't just torn to shreds, but instead, could turn and be encountered, I think it would make for some interesting moments at the very least. It's a major theme, after all, and while SoD1 touched on it, SoD2 doesn't even seem to bother.
 
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#93
I played a few more hours with the new patch, didn't notice any glaring issues, but I recalled something that always sort of bugged me without putting it into words -- Ever since the story moments in the first game where the threat of turning was strongly emphasized like Sam's mission for example (trying to avoid spoilers even though I'm sure everyone here is intimately familiar with SoD1), I've always wanted to be able to see my failed survivors as a part of a horde later on in the game. If they weren't just torn to shreds, but instead, could turn and be encountered, I think it would make for some interesting moments at the very least. It's a major theme, after all, and while SoD1 touched on it, SoD2 doesn't even seem to bother.
Actually it sorta does. Your d00dz don't get torn apart anymore if they die by Zombies, they just fall down and go "BLARG! I AM DEAD!" then get up and shuffle around until you find them. I can't speak as to what happens if they die by Feral or Jugg as I've not had that happen yet, and my only death by Zombie was on purpose just to see for myself after I read that there's no more "torn apart" deaths.
 

demonbreather

Missing Survivor
Joined
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#94
Actually it sorta does. Your d00dz don't get torn apart anymore if they die by Zombies, they just fall down and go "BLARG! I AM DEAD!" then get up and shuffle around until you find them. I can't speak as to what happens if they die by Feral or Jugg as I've not had that happen yet, and my only death by Zombie was on purpose just to see for myself after I read that there's no more "torn apart" deaths.
Oh!

I actually just went and looked up death animations on youtube and you're totally right. My bad! It occurs to me now that the only deaths I've ever actually suffered in SoD2 are from Juggs where you get torn in half, so I never saw the turning animation from dying to regular zeds. :/ I also never realized that you don't actually die when you fall from water towers -- I used to get so mad at the ladder issues that if I failed to grab hold and plummeted to the ground I would just shut the game off mid-fall and start a new colony next time.
 

Burzum

Rescued Ally
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#95
Oh shit yeah, it will. Oh fuckin' A.

God Him/Her/Itself could tell me UL hasn't a clue about the (fair and congenial) criticisms that've been forcefully and eloquently expressed on this forum and I'd laugh in His/Her/Its face. UL fuckin' knows.

Five long years between the original "State of Decay" and May 18, 2018; five long years to rewrite the faulty code and iron out all of the prominent (and constantly griped about) glitches; five long years to swab the deck, mend the sails, jettison the extraneous ballast, and get the bloody ship seaworthy. Five long years. And still they fucked it up.

And yet, even now, despite the egregious failures and the careless missteps . . . even now, I'm willing to give UL the benefit of the doubt.

All they have to do is make a few reasonable concessions to us, the OGs who kept the ship sailing for five long years, and who thus got to know every nook & cranny . . . every board, deck, mast, sail, room, and cannon . . . of that ship so very, very intimately.

And so we sit. And we wait.

UL knows.

Oh yes. The next few months will be most telling indeed.
Well...It would appear that MDK has actually said everything i really didn't want to say out loud.

I'm not 100% convinced that UL really ARE happy with the game thats been put out, i seem to get this *fake smile, excited wave while someone points a gun at me off camera* kinda vibe in almost everything i've read from them concerning the game, its fixes, future etc. I honestly believe, and i don't think i'm alone here, that MS have taken control of SoD and forced UL into a position of

'we own this shit now so do as we say or lose any future input whatsoever, the aim of the game is to make money, yeah SOD1 had potential, it had an OG (myself included) on the forums that were a useful thinktank BUT we want NEW players, we want the kids, we want the casuals, the people that will part with their hard earned cash for a game we've hyped up to the nines, play the game as is and then move onto our next big release in a few months, we're putting our people in place to make sure you play ball, the zombie genre is dead so milk this cow and move on'

Just my opinion and i fucking hope upon hope that i am wrong because if that IS the case State Of Decay in all its forms is dead. I'm not a religious man in any way but i am praying that UL manage to take the reigns back and release what i believe to be their true vision.

I LOVED no, sorry, LOVE SOD1.
Everything about it. From the go we had characters who had a story, had a connection, even when Lilys dad was killed within the first 10 minutes he had something to say, we pulled a slight piece of humanity from him in the brief interactions we had. By the time we'd gone to find Maya we had a little band of survivors who all oozed something that i've yet to see in SoD2, desperation and confusion.

Hell, just driving around Spencers Mill we had an atmosphere, a dead little town BUT thanks to the back stories and little vignettes from other survivors about everyday life etc you were REALLY able to imagine it before the outbreak, everything in SOD1 had character, from the decayed barns to the damn football field, you could IMAGINE Trumbull county, its residents, its way of life. This for me was a huge reason i became so invested in the game, the devs had done an outstanding job with what they had to work with, combined with the albeit basic basebuilding and resource scavenging this game was everything i had always wanted in a zombie game, rich with history, backstory, characters, visuals, it was a winner in every sense of the word. im not going to complain about bugs, i love the game for what it was, not what it should have been, but i guess some people only play AAA titles so the prospect of walking through a closed door was alien to them. meh. lol.
Thats missing for me in SOD2. And for me that was a very important part.
 
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#96
Well...It would appear that MDK has actually said everything i really didn't want to say out loud.

I'm not 100% convinced that UL really ARE happy with the game thats been put out, i seem to get this *fake smile, excited wave while someone points a gun at me off camera* kinda vibe in almost everything i've read from them concerning the game, its fixes, future etc. I honestly believe, and i don't think i'm alone here, that MS have taken control of SoD and forced UL into a position of

'we own this shit now so do as we say or lose any future input whatsoever, the aim of the game is to make money, yeah SOD1 had potential, it had an OG (myself included) on the forums that were a useful thinktank BUT we want NEW players, we want the kids, we want the casuals, the people that will part with their hard earned cash for a game we've hyped up to the nines, play the game as is and then move onto our next big release in a few months, we're putting our people in place to make sure you play ball, the zombie genre is dead so milk this cow and move on'
Yeah, in my often blindly impassioned rants against UL, I tend to forget odds are high that Microsoft now has UL's nuts in a vice-like grip. So that even OGs like Foge, Geoff, and good ol' honest, straight-talking, always-generous-with-the-fans Brant have effectively been neutered. I forget that a lot of the slagged and smoking catastrophe that is SoD 2 may NOT be all UL's fault.

If that's true; if the SoD 2 debacle IS largely Microsoft's fault, then I'll gladly . . . joyously . . . with the utmost relish . . . say openly (to MS) what the Undead Labs OGs may be thinking but dare not utter aloud (for obvious reasons):

Hey Microsoft . . . but specifically those creatively bankrupt, one-dimensional twats and hucksters charged with overseeing SoD 2's development cycle . . . here's a newsflash: you suck. Big Time. You know it. We the fans know it. And UL knows it. It's a popular cliché that monolithic company's like the one you dried-out, souless hacks work for are concerned only with the bottom line, and while there is a lot of truth to that cliché, I know . . . I know . . . some of you secretly want to be thought of as creative giants. Or maybe it's not so secret; maybe you shamelessly brandish your "creative" impulses on your sleeves, dangling 'em out there like gaudy baubles; like edible dayglow underwear for everyone to gawk and cringe at. Either way, I know a few of you are of that pathetic stripe: desperate to be instrumental in the creative process, but knowing instinctively you lack the talent for it. Yet, still you persist, knowing full well that the smiles and chuckles and agreeable head-nods that UL's creative team present to you at meetings are spectacularly fake; that it's all political theater (because they need a paycheck and their kids have to eat); that what they're really thinking is what colossally insufferable and inbred fucking morons you are. Oh yes, fuckheads, it's true. Ya'll suck baaaadly. Everyone that's part of the equation knows it. And I take an admittedly petty, but oh-so-gleeful cold-comfort knowing that you know; that you know your "creative" abortions pass muster, not because they're even remotely mediocre, but rather by dint of the institutional power-structure that supports you. You're akin to the feckless and empty-headed Rich Kid who gets a pass for all his loathsome failures and transgressions and excrements because Daddy has the power to catapult him directly to the top; no genuine effort and hard-earned experience or talent required. ALL THIS, and more, is what UL really thinks about your "creative input" at weekly meetings, you abysmal Little Microsoft Tool.

You suck. UL won't tell you that. But I sure the fuck will.

You suck. Q.E.D.
 
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Burzum

Rescued Ally
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Hertfordshire, England
#97
Yeah, in my often blindly impassioned rants against UL, I tend to forget odds are high that Microsoft now has UL's nuts in a vice-like grip. So that even OGs like Foge, Geoff, and good ol' honest, straight-talking, always-generous-with-the-fans Brant have effectively been neutered. I forget that a lot of the slagged and smoking catastrophe that is SoD 2 may NOT be all UL's fault.

If that's true; if the SoD 2 debacle IS largely Microsoft's fault, then I'll gladly . . . joyously . . . with the utmost relish . . . say openly (to MS) what the Undead Labs OGs may be thinking but dare not utter aloud (for obvious reasons):

Hey Microsoft . . . but specifically those creatively bankrupt, one-dimensional twats and hucksters charged with overseeing SoD 2's development cycle . . . here's a newsflash: you suck. Big Time. You know it. We the fans know it. And UL knows it. It's a popular cliché that monolithic company's like the one you dried-out, souless hacks work for are concerned only with the bottom line, and while there is a lot of truth to that cliché, I know . . . I know . . . some of you secretly want to be thought of as creative giants. Or maybe it's not so secret; maybe you shamelessly brandish your "creative" impulses on your sleeves, dangling 'em out there like gaudy baubles; like edible dayglow underwear for everyone to gawk and cringe at. Either way, I know a few of you are of that pathetic stripe: desperate to be instrumental in the creative process, but knowing instinctively you lack the talent for it. Yet, still you persist, knowing full well that the smiles and chuckles and agreeable head-nods that UL's creative team present to you at meetings are spectacularly fake; that it's all political theater (because they need a paycheck and their kids have to eat); that what they're really thinking is what colossally insufferable and inbred fucking morons you are. Oh yes, fuckheads, it's true. Ya'll suck baaaadly. Everyone that's part of the equation knows it. And I take an admittedly petty, but oh-so-gleeful cold-comfort knowing that you know; that you know your "creative" abortions pass muster, not because they're even remotely mediocre, but rather by dint of the institutional power-structure that supports you. You're akin to the feckless and empty-headed Rich Kid who gets a pass for all his loathsome failures and transgressions and excrements because Daddy has the power to catapult him directly to the top; no genuine effort and hard-earned experience or talent required. ALL THIS, and more, is what UL really thinks about your "creative input" at weekly meetings, you abysmal Little Microsoft Tool.

You suck. UL won't tell you that. But I sure the fuck will.

You suck. Q.E.D.
And just like that, Mad Dog Kelso joined my list of top 5 favourite people ever.
 
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#98
Yeah, in my often blindly impassioned rants against UL, I tend to forget odds are high that Microsoft now has UL's nuts in a vice-like grip. So that even OGs like Foge, Geoff, and good ol' honest, straight-talking, always-generous-with-the-fans Brant have effectively been neutered. I forget that a lot of the slagged and smoking catastrophe that is SoD 2 may NOT be all UL's fault.

If that's true; if the SoD 2 debacle IS largely Microsoft's fault, then I'll gladly . . . joyously . . . with the utmost relish . . . say openly (to MS) what the Undead Labs OGs may be thinking but dare not utter aloud (for obvious reasons):

Hey Microsoft . . . but specifically those creatively bankrupt, one-dimensional twats and hucksters charged with overseeing SoD 2's development cycle . . . here's a newsflash: you suck. Big Time. You know it. We the fans know it. And UL knows it. It's a popular cliché that monolithic company's like the one you dried-out, souless hacks work for are concerned only with the bottom line, and while there is a lot of truth to that cliché, I know . . . I know . . . some of you secretly want to be thought of as creative giants. Or maybe it's not so secret; maybe you shamelessly brandish your "creative" impulses on your sleeves, dangling 'em out there like gaudy baubles; like edible dayglow underwear for everyone to gawk and cringe at. Either way, I know a few of you are of that pathetic stripe: desperate to be instrumental in the creative process, but knowing instinctively you lack the talent for it. Yet, still you persist, knowing full well that the smiles and chuckles and agreeable head-nods that UL's creative team present to you at meetings are spectacularly fake; that it's all political theater (because they need a paycheck and their kids have to eat); that what they're really thinking is what colossally insufferable and inbred fucking morons you are. Oh yes, fuckheads, it's true. Ya'll suck baaaadly. Everyone that's part of the equation knows it. And I take an admittedly petty, but oh-so-gleeful cold-comfort knowing that you know; that you know your "creative" abortions pass muster, not because they're even remotely mediocre, but rather by dint of the institutional power-structure that supports you. You're akin to the feckless and empty-headed Rich Kid who gets a pass for all his loathsome failures and transgressions and excrements because Daddy has the power to catapult him directly to the top; no genuine effort and hard-earned experience or talent required. ALL THIS, and more, is what UL really thinks about your "creative input" at weekly meetings, you abysmal Little Microsoft Tool.

You suck. UL won't tell you that. But I sure the fuck will.

You suck. Q.E.D.
The problem is the fact that UL is a wholly owned subsidiary of MS. This means the UL employees are no longer UL employees because UL now exists in name only, they are all MS employees.

Speaking of, I am mildly interested to see what Jeff Strain does next considering he probably got a good chunk of change from selling his company. Will he retire? Start another company/studio? Or did he get a cushy executive position within MS as part of the deal and we never hear from him again?
 

odf14

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#99
Yeah, in my often blindly impassioned rants against UL, I tend to forget odds are high that Microsoft now has UL's nuts in a vice-like grip. So that even OGs like Foge, Geoff, and good ol' honest, straight-talking, always-generous-with-the-fans Brant have effectively been neutered. I forget that a lot of the slagged and smoking catastrophe that is SoD 2 may NOT be all UL's fault.

If that's true; if the SoD 2 debacle IS largely Microsoft's fault, then I'll gladly . . . joyously . . . with the utmost relish . . . say openly (to MS) what the Undead Labs OGs may be thinking but dare not utter aloud (for obvious reasons):

Hey Microsoft . . . but specifically those creatively bankrupt, one-dimensional twats and hucksters charged with overseeing SoD 2's development cycle . . . here's a newsflash: you suck. Big Time. You know it. We the fans know it. And UL knows it. It's a popular cliché that monolithic company's like the one you dried-out, souless hacks work for are concerned only with the bottom line, and while there is a lot of truth to that cliché, I know . . . I know . . . some of you secretly want to be thought of as creative giants. Or maybe it's not so secret; maybe you shamelessly brandish your "creative" impulses on your sleeves, dangling 'em out there like gaudy baubles; like edible dayglow underwear for everyone to gawk and cringe at. Either way, I know a few of you are of that pathetic stripe: desperate to be instrumental in the creative process, but knowing instinctively you lack the talent for it. Yet, still you persist, knowing full well that the smiles and chuckles and agreeable head-nods that UL's creative team present to you at meetings are spectacularly fake; that it's all political theater (because they need a paycheck and their kids have to eat); that what they're really thinking is what colossally insufferable and inbred fucking morons you are. Oh yes, fuckheads, it's true. Ya'll suck baaaadly. Everyone that's part of the equation knows it. And I take an admittedly petty, but oh-so-gleeful cold-comfort knowing that you know; that you know your "creative" abortions pass muster, not because they're even remotely mediocre, but rather by dint of the institutional power-structure that supports you. You're akin to the feckless and empty-headed Rich Kid who gets a pass for all his loathsome failures and transgressions and excrements because Daddy has the power to catapult him directly to the top; no genuine effort and hard-earned experience or talent required. ALL THIS, and more, is what UL really thinks about your "creative input" at weekly meetings, you abysmal Little Microsoft Tool.

You suck. UL won't tell you that. But I sure the fuck will.

You suck. Q.E.D.
So, I'll ask this question again: at what point do we stop making up excuses for Undead Labs?

It's all well and fine to hoist Microsoft on a petard and blame them for the debacle that the game has become. People can damn Microsoft to all nine circles of Hell for pushing UL to make the game "newbie-friendly." I'm certainly not going to tell them they're entirely wrong in holding that opinion.

But Undead Labs isn't innocent in this, either.

Leave aside the bugs, many of which existed in the same form in the first game. Those are never going to get fixed and, indeed, seem to be beyond UL's competence-level to fix. Nothing about "make the game friendly for casual players" dictates the removal of, say, the ability to set outpost traps. Or the ability of safe zones to actually work. Nothing about "make the game more accessible to newcomers" says that no matter how many or how few resources your community has, the FateCards should be set to drain them every two or three minutes. No corporate directive from the Microsoft suits told UL that it should be impossible to build or repair barricades for your base in the main game, but that that would be just a peachy idea for the DLC. Nothing about "make the game more appealing" says "Hey, wouldn't it be great if the zeds could just mosey into a base at will and gank the players while they're sorting through the storage locker?"

It is, or at least should be, abundantly clear by now that UL is creatively bankrupt. The fundamentally flawed and broken game mechanics and design choices lie squarely on their shoulders, not on Microsoft, no matter how tempted we might be to put all the blame on the latter. Undead Labs is far from the plucky little band that tried to fight and lost a rear-guard action against the encroaching corporate leviathan. Undead Labs didn't even show up for the fight.

Somewhere along the line, UL lost their way; they managed to capture lightning in a bottle with the first game. But they lost it with the second which, because of the utterly baffling choices the design team made with SoD 2, really has me questioning if they understand what they did and what they had with the first game.

Sequels generally iterate on what came before, a concept that is pretty much absent in this case. Hell, I'd have been okay with it if SoD2 had been a kind of SoD-lite. But they didn't even manage to accomplish that. What they spewed out is something that kind of looks like the first game, but is entirely devoid of any character or of anything that made the first game what it was.

And that is entirely on the shoulders of UL.
 
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The problem is the fact that UL is a wholly owned subsidiary of MS. This means the UL employees are no longer UL employees because UL now exists in name only, they are all MS employees.

Speaking of, I am mildly interested to see what Jeff Strain does next considering he probably got a good chunk of change from selling his company. Will he retire? Start another company/studio? Or did he get a cushy executive position within MS as part of the deal and we never hear from him again?
I hope Mr. Strain did get a nice chunk 'o change and is living well. The guy's been in the industry a long time, and he's clearly a smart, savvy, creative individual. He's worked doggedly for decades and I'm glad it's paid off for him.

But damn it all, don't just abandon your brand. I'm not sure what Strain's been up to since May 18, but I know at least one thing he hasn't done: responded to the concerns of those of us who, long before SoD 1's release, made a cozy Treehouse of his forum; who developed strong bonds with his creative team; who bought his game (in droves) when it did release; who spread the word about how great it was to family, friends, and acquaintances who otherwise wouldn't have known about its existence; and who then passionately supported his franchise for over five long years. Yeah, I know at least that fuckin' much.

I sincerely wish Jeff the best.

But the optics are merde.
 
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