Indie Dev Threatens to Kill Gabe Newell, Valve Pulls His Game From Steam

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Indie Dev Threatens to Kill Gabe Newell, Valve Pulls His Game From Steam

paranautical activity early access

In an unsurprising lesson of cause and effect, Paranautical Activity was pulled from Steam following a Gabe Newell death threat.

Here's a free life tip that should seem obvious: don't threaten to kill the man who controls the only platform your game is available on. Paranautical Activity developer Mike Maulbeck learned this the hard way, after a death threat to Gabe Newell led to his game being pulled from Steam.

Maulbeck, furious at Steam for not updating its banner ad for Paranautical Activity to reflect that it had left early-access and was now in full release, vented over Twitter that Steam is "the most incompetent piece of f**king shit", and claiming that the service is "f**king taking money out of my pocket" and "misinforming people that my game is in f**king early access".

He then posted Tweet threatening Newell's life, which read, "I am going to kill Gabe Newell. He is going to die." It has since been deleted, but as always, the internet never forgets, and this time our friends over at Player Attack managed to save a screencap of the Tweet. It certainly didn't help that Maulbeck was using the Halloween-themed handled Mike Murderbeck at the time...

Upon calming down, and realizing the severity of his snafu, Maulbeck posted, "Welp. PA no longer on steam. I'm done making videogames now. It sucked while it lasted," later adding "I'm jumping back and forth between killing myself and getting a job at radio shack."

He did take one last pass at Steam on his way out, though, stating "I hope by the time my next game comes out steam doesn't have this awful fucking monopoly anymore."

Lesson learned: don't bite the hand that feeds you.

Source: Twitter via Player Attack

Permalink

Good, teaches the fool if you stupidly threaten an employee of a company they have the full right to boot your ass and cut all ties to you. I followed the twitter triad and Valve's response to the matter(for your consideration: http://www.polygon.com/2014/10/20/7024585/gabe-newell-death-threat-paranautical-activity-steam-valve), and I believe Valve made the right call to cut loose a developer like Maulbeck. I do feel sorry for the co-developer of the game, poor guy just got ruined by his partner; hopefully he can still find work somewhere else.

...

Yeah, this guy, if he doesn't get arrested, got off easy. Good on Valve to not tolerate this kind of behavior. Wish I knew just how remorseful this guy is, though it doesn't seem to be the case.

You don't make such threats, on Twitter of all places, without repercussions.

Guess it's true: there are over 6 billion people on this planet, and half of them don't know it.

Always a good idea of cooling off before acting on your emotions...

I think i found his tweet.

image

You know, where is Gabe's patreon account? Oh wait, its called steam.

Now don't bite the hand that feeds you? Wow, maybe the game industry should pick up this new crazy idea!

Well that was fucking dumb.
Apparently this game had been going through development hell and people were hating it anyway, so I guess this is no big surprise.

Wow. So entitled. He's lucky the only thing they did was pull his game.

And Steam's not a monopoly, you poor stupid entitled manchild. Why don't you ask Mojang about that?

That was stupid of him, getting kicked off the store is the least that could happen. If he was joking he should make an effort to personally and privately explain himself and apologise to try to rebuild bridges, if it was an outburst of temper maybe he would learn his lesson.

I know the game has had a troubled development and got the rough end of the stick from Valve, there was all the fuss with it getting refused, getting Greenlit and refused, getting a publisher and still refused so I can understand if there was some resentment there from the developers part and frustration boiled over but death threats are going to far.

oldtaku:
Why don't you ask Mojang about that?

I agree with the rest of your post more or less but this, this well isn't representative. Outlier game is an outlier, Steam has been having a detrimental affect of indie developers and its been well recognised for a while.

For years Steam was the gatekeeper of what game would be successful or not, for hundreds of them no Steam launch = no success.

This doesn't really matter though, Steam is/was a monopoly but regardless death threats are not the way to deal with frustration.

Not biting the hand that feeds you? More like "don't make death threats against people at a company you are trying to make business with". I have read of bigger deals broken for less.

Steven Bogos:

Lesson learned: don't bite the hand that feeds you.

One would think that "Just don't make death threats. Period." was the more valuable lesson here.

Phil Fish 2.0.

Makes an ok game (in this case, incredibly average), chucks a hissy fit over something silly, /quits industry.

Sooooooo, Gaben doesn't announce it all over twitter, leaves his house for feeling threatened, blame gamergate, has his friend plug his work and go on MSNBC? Well, well, well ...

This is absolutely ridiculous... Why would you need a 'Halloween themed' username if your name is already Maulbeck?

OT: I wonder what happens for people who already have the game. I'm going to assume they'll still get to keep it as has been the case in the past for games that were made unavailable for whatever reason.

I feel bad for the other half of that dev team, seems like going to be completely shafted by his partner's stupidity through no fault of his own.

I feel like the internet is making people act more and more immature...

While, yes, the Dev was incredibly stupid by doing such a think people are glossing over what Valve did wrong.

While 'Don't send Death threats' is the obvious moral of the story, there's also the new moral that 'Valve always doesn't do good.' Like this guy for his comment or not the truth is that his game had JUST released out of early access after years of work, and Valve falsely advertised it as being still within early-access. And with how many people condone early access, that could be a huge hit to sales. Especially on the game's first day.

And to an indie dev, as opposed to a Triple A publisher, those sales mean a LOT. So yea, I won't defend the guy for posting stupid stuff online, but maybe we should recognize Valve isn't a saint in all this either?

What in the world could've caused such an outburst?

Did it take like a year or something before they changed the banner?

oldtaku:
Wow. So entitled. He's lucky the only thing they did was pull his game.

And Steam's not a monopoly, you poor stupid entitled manchild. Why don't you ask Mojang about that?

Calm down friend, your rage is showing.

News just in: Making death threats on twitter is still the dumbest thing ever. Doubly so if the dude who is paying you money and controls the access to your product can - and will - see it.

There's shooting yourself in the foot and then there's shooting yourself with a cannon.

Ronack:
Sooooooo, Gaben doesn't announce it all over twitter, leaves his house for feeling threatened, blame gamergate, has his friend plug his work and go on MSNBC? Well, well, well ...

image

Ronack:
Sooooooo, Gaben doesn't announce it all over twitter, leaves his house for feeling threatened, blame gamergate, has his friend plug his work and go on MSNBC? Well, well, well ...

That made me laugh. I think this should be the main focus of this article this is an example of what a normal person does after a threat not a professional victim like you know who.

What is this silly bugger playing at, why not just call steam and say look its still showing greenlight can you change that please.

This man has deep problems to outburst on twitter like that. I am glad his game is gone and i am glad he wont be making anymore.

I think the warning message the first time you run sudo applies here mainly number 2

#1) Respect the privacy of others.
#2) Think before you type.
#3) With great power comes great responsibility.

RetroMenace:
While, yes, the Dev was incredibly stupid by doing such a think people are glossing over what Valve did wrong.

While 'Don't send Death threats' is the obvious moral of the story, there's also the new moral that 'Valve always doesn't do good.' Like this guy for his comment or not the truth is that his game had JUST released out of early access after years of work, and Valve falsely advertised it as being still within early-access. And with how many people condone early access, that could be a huge hit to sales. Especially on the game's first day.

And to an indie dev, as opposed to a Triple A publisher, those sales mean a LOT. So yea, I won't defend the guy for posting stupid stuff online, but maybe we should recognize Valve isn't a saint in all this either?

When was his game finished? The violent rant was wrong but I guess if the game had been fully done for a long time I'd be mad too (not death threats mad but still). I don't know too much about Steam, only got an account when I started uni last month, so I don't know how long Steam usually takes to update stuff like this.

softclocks:
What in the world could've caused such an outburst?

No there is more to it than that, they tried unsuccessfully for quite a while to get the game on the Steam store. Valve where valve and responses took months, no reasons where given for the refusal etc, then when Greenlight was launched they where hopeful and the game got Greenlit by the community. Valve where Valve and refused, didnt respond for months and no reasons where given once again.

However a change in policy by Valve allowed indie devs to released their games under a publisher, if the dev could work out a publishing deal with a publisher that already had games on Steam it was easy to get your game on Steam but with the financial cost of working with a publisher (some of whom where scalping small devs but thats another story).

The team behind Paranautical Activity worked out a deal with Adult Swim... And got refused... Once again Valve where Valve and didn't respond for ages until they finally claimed it was because they where involved with the Greenlight process, I guess them not changing the game from "early access" to "released" was the straw that broke the camels back.

They have been getting the short end of the stick from Valve for a while, none of that justifies personal death threats though. If he insulted or ranted about the company it might have been understandable but threatening to kill a man is crossing a line.

Edit,

I should add that I am not making any judgments on Valves reasons for the way they acted, I do not know why. Maybe they didn't feel the game was suitable (consider some of the garbage on Steam though...), typical impersonal corporate bureaucracy or whether or not they had a grudge or issue with the devs personally.

Fuck all this stuff about the lesson being 'don't send death threats' the lesson is, don't type shit on twitter when your pissed off. Because other than in the literal sense, I don't see a death threat.

You... Who... WHY? How can someone that had such a hard time dealing with getting a game on Steam then goes on like a complete dumbass and do something as idiotic as a death threat? And even worse, makes it in something as public as Twitter.

While I get that you might get angry at something, it still surprises me how some people just have no grasp whatsoever when it comes to this, "death threats" won't be taken lightly if you're not a 5 year old, and not even, no matter if it's as stupid as "Im gonna kill him or something".

To be fair some of the blame does lie with Valve too. The people responsible should have done their jobs correctly and not advertised the game as early access. The guy should have not issued a death threat or gotten a upset as much as he did but both parties are at fault for this one.

Ronack:
Sooooooo, Gaben doesn't announce it all over twitter, leaves his house for feeling threatened, blame gamergate, has his friend plug his work and go on MSNBC? Well, well, well ...

Careful. You'll have the SJW's on you for trying to compare the suffering of women in the industry to the suffering of men int he industry if that comment gets out.

alj:

Ronack:
Sooooooo, Gaben doesn't announce it all over twitter, leaves his house for feeling threatened, blame gamergate, has his friend plug his work and go on MSNBC? Well, well, well ...

That made me laugh. I think this should be the main focus of this article this is an example of what a normal person does after a threat not a professional victim like you know who.

... Yeah... Because a general twitter message from an angry guy venting on twitter whose identity is known is totally the same thing a specific direct threat from an unknown source referencing a massacre at a certain time and place where there is no effort to control lethal weapons.
Like, identical. Right?

Bat Vader:
To be fair some of the blame does lie with Valve too. The people responsible should have done their jobs correctly and not advertised the game as early access. The guy should have not issued a death threat or gotten a upset as much as he did but both parties are at fault for this one.

I do agree, but what he should have done is contacted Valve asking for them to change the game page and then maybe explain on Twitter that the game was no longer in early access and that there is a mistake on Steam. The way he acted however is acceptable.

Capcha: I can fix it. No capcha this one is above even you.

Adultratedhydra:

Ronack:
Sooooooo, Gaben doesn't announce it all over twitter, leaves his house for feeling threatened, blame gamergate, has his friend plug his work and go on MSNBC? Well, well, well ...

Careful. You'll have the SJW's on you for trying to compare the suffering of women in the industry to the suffering of men int he industry if that comment gets out.

Yeeeeah......you know that this shit is why people don't take GamerGate seriously, right?

"You pressed the 'Threaten the Famous Person You Have Business Dealings With' Button. You shouldn't have done that."

Why do I get the feeling an army of nerds, armed with crowbars and dressed in homemade HEV suits, has gathered outside Gabe's house, hoping to protect him so Half-Life 3 will be made. (No offense to sane Half-Life fans here. That's just the first image to pop into my head whilst reading the headline.)

AntiChri5:

Adultratedhydra:

Ronack:
Sooooooo, Gaben doesn't announce it all over twitter, leaves his house for feeling threatened, blame gamergate, has his friend plug his work and go on MSNBC? Well, well, well ...

Careful. You'll have the SJW's on you for trying to compare the suffering of women in the industry to the suffering of men int he industry if that comment gets out.

Yeeeeah......you know that this shit is why people don't take GamerGate seriously, right?

Im not for either side. Gamergate is stupid, the three professional victims are stupid, everyone in that debacle is stupid and they just havent realised it yet.

I mean you have people wanting their 5 minutes of fame on one side, people shouting into a vacuum on the other. Both sides have no points to make anymore. they're both just shouting at eachother trying to one up each shot the other takes. Self fulfilling prophecy at this point.

chikusho:

alj:

Ronack:
Sooooooo, Gaben doesn't announce it all over twitter, leaves his house for feeling threatened, blame gamergate, has his friend plug his work and go on MSNBC? Well, well, well ...

That made me laugh. I think this should be the main focus of this article this is an example of what a normal person does after a threat not a professional victim like you know who.

... Yeah... Because a general twitter message from an angry guy venting on twitter whose identity is known is totally the same thing a specific direct threat from an unknown source referencing a massacre at a certain time and place where there is no effort to control lethal weapons.
Like, identical. Right?

A number of specific threats.

In any case, the idea that a victim has to respond a certain way, or that they magically don't count for soem reason...that's a very common form of victim blaming there.

chikusho:

alj:

Ronack:
Sooooooo, Gaben doesn't announce it all over twitter, leaves his house for feeling threatened, blame gamergate, has his friend plug his work and go on MSNBC? Well, well, well ...

That made me laugh. I think this should be the main focus of this article this is an example of what a normal person does after a threat not a professional victim like you know who.

... Yeah... Because a general twitter message from an angry guy venting on twitter whose identity is known is totally the same thing a specific direct threat from an unknown source referencing a massacre at a certain time and place where there is no effort to control lethal weapons.
Like, identical. Right?

Dude, its Gabe Newell.

The amount of jokes of him being fat have been going on for so many years now, add to that the fact that its incrediblt likely that he probably got his fair share of hate mail because of Half Life 3

As we would say in England, he got #rekt


Well that was.. err.. not smart. Pure stupidity? A burst of rage? An attempt to sabotage his own game and get some free time on jail as a bonus? Guess we'll never know.

Ronack:
Sooooooo, Gaben doesn't announce it all over twitter, leaves his house for feeling threatened, blame gamergate, has his friend plug his work and go on MSNBC? Well, well, well ...

There's nothing like a good laugh in the morning, thank you.

Welshdan15:
When was his game finished? The violent rant was wrong but I guess if the game had been fully done for a long time I'd be mad too (not death threats mad but still). I don't know too much about Steam, only got an account when I started uni last month, so I don't know how long Steam usually takes to update stuff like this.

His game was released yesterday. Apparently he had finished it and attempted to upload it during the weekend, but Valve doesn't allow people to just release their games whenever they feel like it. As such, why he initially got upset at them.

Then, after a weekend of waiting for launch day (which would provide him a massive increase in sales, which for an indie dev which doesn't get a regular salary, is kind of a big deal) Valve lets him launch it... and doesn't update the banner and as such falsely advertises the game as Early-Access when it is in fact a fully released product.

While the guy was a huge arse and shouldn't have overreacted, Valve did something that would have immensely hurt the sales of the game (had they not straight out removed it), which is a TERRIBLE thing for indie devs. There really seems like there needs to be more communication between Valve and people who provide products for them to sell.

Why seem so many "professionals" in this industry act like 13 year old children? I guess we only ever hear from the ones that can't behave but I doubt any other industry has this many people behaving this unprofessional in public. Especially the last few months with the GG/anti-GG bullshit have been bad.

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