Darkest Dungeon Scam Appears On Official Windows Store - Update

Darkest Dungeon Scam Appears On Official Windows Store - Update

darkest dungeon 2

Illegitimate sales of Red Hook Studios' Darkest Dungeon are occurring on the official Windows Store - and it's probably nothing but malware.

Update: The Windows Store Darkest Dungeon page - and in fact everything posted by Balaji Chowdary - has been taken offline.

"We have had several kind Microsoft employees from various departments reach out and offer to shepherd/escalate the issue to the store team," Red Hook Studios co-president Tyler Sigman told Polygon earlier today. "It's been really great of them to do so ... We only noticed and filed our support ticket yesterday, which was a Sunday. So it really has not been very long yet.

"The whole scamming/cloning/pirating side of the business obviously sucks for devs," Sigman continued. "Our focus is on controlling the things we can: working with storefronts (or via other remedies) to ensure that our legal rights are not violated, and making the best game we can and putting it out at a fair price so that people thing it's a worthwhile purchase. This particular issue (DD on the Windows Game Store) is comparatively very, very tiny right now, but we don't like the idea of gamers getting scammed, aside from the other undesirable effects like providing support for pirated/altered versions and losing revenue to people who had nothing to do with creating the game."

Source: Polygon

Original Story: Darkest Dungeon is the bleak-yet-fun game of dungeon crawling and mental breakdowns that's quickly becoming one of the best titles in Early Access. But be warned if you're looking for discounted copies - Darkest Dungeon scams are rampant, even on official sites like the Windows Store. A Darkest Dungeon app for Windows 8 currently sits on the actual Microsoft storefront - which would be great if Red Hook Studios actually authorized it. (Don't buy the app, by the way - the odds are very high that it's malware.)

"Please ensure you purchase the game from Steam or Humble," Red Hook wrote on the Darkest Dungeon twitter as reports arrived. "Scams have been reported and we are checking into them."

Actually examining the Windows Store's "Darkest Dungeon" page (assuming it's still up when you read this) reveals all kinds of glaring red flags. The game description is poorly formatted, and mentions heroes traveling through "twisted forests, crypts and other strangling places". The app itself is 2 MB in size, which is odd considering the full game is roughly 1 GB. The listed Darkest Dungeon support email goes to [email protected] - far from an official address.

But perhaps the biggest indicator this app isn't on the level? Its lone screenshot has an "Activate Windows" watermark that suggests it was taken with a Windows 8 trial copy.

The Windows Store game entry still exists as of writing, but the internet rapidly took screenshots and dissected the matter in short order. What's worse is that the "publisher" - Balaji Chowdary - is running this operation on 20 games, including Shadowrun: Dragonfall, Warcraft III, Euro Truck Simulator 2, and Game Dev Tycoon.

We will update this story with any additional information as it develops.

Disclaimer: This writer is a backer of the Darkest Dungeon Kickstarter campaign.

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I looked at the page. Seriously whoever buys into this is an idiot.
4 bucks for 20 dollar game, low-res screenshot with watermarks and grey bars around, way too short description with horrible spelling and pacing issues, agerating of 3+, Classified as a "strategy" game.

The funniest bit is that this 'amazing developer' is taking his screenshots from an unactivated version of Windows even ^_^

Makes me fear Microsoft's idea of a single app environment for the upcoming Windows 10 though. We all know how much of a piracy heaven Windows Mobile is and now it is clear Windows 8 is no better, so should we really trust the same people in Windows 10?

Something dubious and no "get it while you can"? Than again the writer is different so maybe I'll give the escapist a pass just this once.

Not anyone's fault but their own if they pay to attend some indie show that advertises Doink... and than are shocked when what they get it isn't the late great Matt Osborne, and instead one of the millions of cheap Doinks out there.

'Age rating 3+'

Yeah, a game about nether world horrors, creeping insanity and gruesome death is perfect for the kiddies on those long car rides.

Everyone wants to save money. When looking for a deal, they shut off their other brain functions. Being cheap is one thing, but shouldn't be stupid.

Thanks for the PSA, hopefully the asshat that pull this stunt gets what's coming too him.

Unrelated to the asshattery at hand, I appreciate the disclaimer attached to the news article. In this case it's not needed since the piece does nothing to celebrate the game and is merely reporting the facts but seeing that kind of disclosure is nice. While I'm not a "GGer" I do appreciate such disclosures when it comes to news, any news. Thanks, Fanghawk, even though I realize this is part of The Escapist's rules for disclosure and probably not all that necessary in this instance.

I dunno if I should be surprised that someone is trying to scam Darkest Dungeon this fast or this late.

MerlinCross:
I dunno if I should be surprised that someone is trying to scam Darkest Dungeon this fast or this late.

I suspect it's because the game has been pretty bloody successful, another example of what can happen when Kickstarter works properly, but also came with a bit of controversy attached. Basically Red Hook created an exclusive character class specifically for backers. This has lead to a lot of people being upset about never being able to get all the content when they didn't back the game. That said those that backed the game and took the risks (especially those who paid more than $20) are in many cases upset about losing their exclusive benefit if Red Hook was to make this available to everyone, or provide it as buyable DLC later. I haven't followed it recently, but last time I checked Red Hook seemed to be waffling back and forth going by what I was reading in locations like the STEAM forums. Either way they are probably going to slot people off, and I wouldn't be surprised if they are being targeted by people POed in either direction since the game became popular enough for people to actually care.

That said exclusive in-game content is one of the things that those planning a kick starter can promise fairly easily without worrying about the cost of manufacturing and shipping physical goods and the like. If this is any indication, and if I'm correct about what might be going on, it could have some interesting ramifications for the whole system of financing down the road.

Man some people sure are scummy. Like that other game where people were buying the reduced-price Russian copies and selling for a profit.

Also I appreciate the disclosure.

I just want to say that while the reviews are all over the place on this game, there have been quite a few people who where not happy with the game in it's current state (It's early access though, so that may change eventually). This should be mentioned though so people have a chance to read up on it's current state before purchasing it while it's still in Early Access. I'm not saying the game is bad myself btw, I'm just trying to balance out the (I felt) very positive spin the game was given by Fanghawk. Many people really like the game as well, but just go into it with your eyes open and realize there is still more changes that will be made to the game before it's done.

AMBUSHED BY FOUL INVENTION!

Having it taken down is a trifling victory, but a victory nonetheless.

josh4president:
AMBUSHED BY FOUL INVENTION!

Having it taken down is a trifling victory, but a victory nonetheless.

"Curious is the pirate's workcraft, his efficacy witnessed and condemned by all."

OT

Look, the game is only $20 on Steam - I'm poor as feth and even I managed to scrabble together enough spare change to afford that! Don't do this fantastic game a disservice by attempting to steal it!

Hate to grammar nazi on this buuut.

"Please ensure you purchase the game from Steam or Humble," Red Hook wrote

Kind of hard to "purchase" anything when you acquire nothing of substance from the monetary transaction and the distribution does not actually sell copies of the product.

It is a damned shame how not only gamers do not properly understand what steam is, but even developers dont realize what transaction they are actually performing.

But this dev in particular should not entirely be surprised at cons and scams related to the leasing of copies of their product considering they are encouraging them by trying to make a profit off of their product with their continued ambivalence toward actually selling copies.

In short when you put all your eggs in one basket, you cant be surprised when you have nothing left when someone steals the basket.

I saw that. I was wondering why the hell it was $5 if it was actually Darkest Dungeon. I was going to check it out more but never got around to it. I only briefly looked at it so I didn't notice the watermark and that the publisher names was wrong as well. Glad I didn't buy it without thinking about it!

A shame its not real because it would have been nice to have a decent game on my tablet.

viranimus:
Hate to grammar nazi on this buuut.

"Please ensure you purchase the game from Steam or Humble," Red Hook wrote

Kind of hard to "purchase" anything when you acquire nothing of substance from the monetary transaction and the distribution does not actually sell copies of the product.

It is a damned shame how not only gamers do not properly understand what steam is, but even developers dont realize what transaction they are actually performing.

But this dev in particular should not entirely be surprised at cons and scams related to the leasing of copies of their product considering they are encouraging them by trying to make a profit off of their product with their continued ambivalence toward actually selling copies.

In short when you put all your eggs in one basket, you cant be surprised when you have nothing left when someone steals the basket.

Just because you have a different opinion on what "purchasing" means, it's kind of condescending to say people don't understand how Steam works. You get a digital copy which is a lot more reliable than physical disc that might easily break or get corrupted otherwise. For example my Might & Magic Heroes VI got corrupted after only 40-50 days while I haven't had a single negative experience in 300+ Steam games. Okay, I was unable to play Worms World Party for a week but now it works perfectly. So I'm pretty sure we "properly understand what Steam is".

"Continued ambivalence toward actually selling copies"? What the what? They are actually selling copies, they're just selling digital copies. I have a difficult time understanding you but are you saying Red Hook had it coming for not selling "real" copies? Scams in Windows store have nothing to do with Steam.

Back to topic: I'm glad they dealt with the scammer because Darkest Dungeon is a great game, one of the few examples of Early Access done right. They have done excellent work with bug fixes and balancing the game, on first week of EA they updated the game practically every day. I can't say "everyone should purchase it now!" yet because it lacks 2 major areas and 33% of the classes, I'm confident DD will be a highly polished game once it's finished. So PURCHASE it DIGITALLY once it's finished, you won't regret it!

viranimus:
Hate to grammar nazi on this buuut.

By grammar you mean semantics. right?

A'tuin:

Just because you have a different opinion on what "purchasing" means, it's kind of condescending to say people don't understand how Steam works. You get a digital copy which is a lot more reliable than physical disc that might easily break or get corrupted otherwise. For example my Might & Magic Heroes VI got corrupted after only 40-50 days while I haven't had a single negative experience in 300+ Steam games. Okay, I was unable to play Worms World Party for a week but now it works perfectly. So I'm pretty sure we "properly understand what Steam is".

"Continued ambivalence toward actually selling copies"? What the what? They are actually selling copies, they're just selling digital copies. I have a difficult time understanding you but are you saying Red Hook had it coming for not selling "real" copies? Scams in Windows store have nothing to do with Steam.

Back to topic: I'm glad they dealt with the scammer because Darkest Dungeon is a great game, one of the few examples of Early Access done right. They have done excellent work with bug fixes and balancing the game, on first week of EA they updated the game practically every day. I can't say "everyone should purchase it now!" yet because it lacks 2 major areas and 33% of the classes, I'm confident DD will be a highly polished game once it's finished. So PURCHASE it DIGITALLY once it's finished, you won't regret it!

Thank you for stepping up for illustration. No... it is not a matter of opinion, it is the definition of the word.

The definition illustrates that the term purchase means to the exchange of currency for the purpose to acquire, possess or otherwise own something. When you buy something through steam you OWN nothing. You are leasing a software license.

You do not purchase a lease. It is already a verb distinguishing itself as an action and in this case you effectively cannot action an action.

As it relates to Steam, that "period of time" is basically whenever Steam decides to change the terms of the agreement, or no longer continues to support the product.

So to conclude, I am sorry you had such difficulty understanding what I said, or my reasoning for saying it. I have done my best to clarify the position and clear up misunderstandings around it. Ive stated my opinion, Ive clarified it, but with all due respect I will not argue it. My position has been made clear and there is nothing to gain having to repeat what I have just said. So I thank you for your reply and hope that has helped to improve the understanding of any who have read it. Though I do respect human nature and fully understand that most people are likely going file it under the category TL;DR, just like they do for most EULAs.

Edit: Captcha= Groundhog day.

SCREW YOU WICKED WEATHER WEASEL! I HOPE YOU FREEZE TO DEATH!

D3s_ToD3s:

viranimus:
Hate to grammar nazi on this buuut.

By grammar you mean semantics. right?

Yeah, a little of that too

viranimus:

So to conclude, I am sorry you had such difficulty understanding what I said, or my reasoning for saying it. I have done my best to clarify the position and clear up misunderstandings around it. Ive stated my opinion, Ive clarified it, but with all due respect I will not argue it. My position has been made clear and there is nothing to gain having to repeat what I have just said. So I thank you for your reply and hope that has helped to improve the understanding of any who have read it. Though I do respect human nature and fully understand that most people are likely going file it under the category TL;DR, just like they do for most EULAs.

Oh, so you were using spoiler tags. I just stared at the words "Steam" and "Red hook" and thought the rest of your sentence was just aggravating me, in the way of "If you don't understand the difference between Red Hook and Steam I won't bother telling you, sorry you have difficulty understanding how those 3 words prove my point".

Now that I've actually read your post (please mention you're about to use spoiler tags next time) I completely disagree with your ways of objecting Steam based on technical terms. I'm not going to argue about origin of English terms like purchasing and leasing since it's not my native language so let's say you are technically absolutely correct. However you could technically object buying coke cans because you're paying some extra for the metal can that has to be returned to recycle center for 20 cents and technically you're just leasing the can and temporarily paying extra 0,2€ so Coca-Cola is the root of all evil and stupid sheeples should wake up to understand this devilish scheme! Okay, Coca-Cola wasn't the best example of honest business but you (hopefully) get the idea. Better example: some people buy bananas for let's say 2€ per kilogram (dollars per pound in US I guess) without understanding that quite a lot of that kilogram of bananas is "wasted" on the banana peels. Does that mean that the grocery store is ripping people off and bananas should be sold peeled or with the peel/fruit flesh ratio calculated on each banana? I think not.

I also think that Red Hook has made it perfectly clear that Darkest Dungeon won't be a completely finished product by Q1 2015 so I don't personally see and dodgy behaviour. Everyone who Kickstarter'd the game (including me) will get a functional, full game later on, I'm optimistic and guess they'll leave Early Access in late 2015.

"When it does come up asking when will the game be available to actually purchase, the best that is responded is "We are working on making the game good first", as if the game is functionally finished and simply needs a few tweaks."

"Making the game good" = "this game is almost finished" is quite the mental leap and I have no idea how you interpret it that way. My experience with Red Hook has been overwhelmingly positive and I've already got my 20$ worth of enjoyment from this "incomplete project" (which it technically is, I agree) and I believe they'll finish the game, not because of trusting the company, but because financially it would be the smartest thing for them to do.

Therumancer:

MerlinCross:
I dunno if I should be surprised that someone is trying to scam Darkest Dungeon this fast or this late.

I suspect it's because the game has been pretty bloody successful, another example of what can happen when Kickstarter works properly, but also came with a bit of controversy attached. Basically Red Hook created an exclusive character class specifically for backers. This has lead to a lot of people being upset about never being able to get all the content when they didn't back the game. That said those that backed the game and took the risks (especially those who paid more than $20) are in many cases upset about losing their exclusive benefit if Red Hook was to make this available to everyone, or provide it as buyable DLC later. I haven't followed it recently, but last time I checked Red Hook seemed to be waffling back and forth going by what I was reading in locations like the STEAM forums. Either way they are probably going to slot people off, and I wouldn't be surprised if they are being targeted by people POed in either direction since the game became popular enough for people to actually care.

That said exclusive in-game content is one of the things that those planning a kick starter can promise fairly easily without worrying about the cost of manufacturing and shipping physical goods and the like. If this is any indication, and if I'm correct about what might be going on, it could have some interesting ramifications for the whole system of financing down the road.

My understanding is that the exclusive class is a cosmetically altered clone of an existing class, so there's no mechanical benefit that non-backers are missing out on. Just in regards to how important it is.

A'tuin:

Oh, so you were using spoiler tags. I just stared at the words "Steam" and "Red hook" and thought the rest of your sentence was just aggravating me, in the way of "If you don't understand the difference between Red Hook and Steam I won't bother telling you, sorry you have difficulty understanding how those 3 words prove my point".

My apologies. I honestly never thought to warn for spoilers to avoid Wall of text retinal aneurysm. Sorry for my presumption. Was doing it simply to make it easier to read, and less load space.

Do want to address your analogies.

So I have to disagree with your analogies because they are seemingly based in flawed reasoning. You do not own the steam client, and you cannot repurpose it into something it was not originally designed for. So trying to compare steam as the method of distribution to other methods of distribution whereby you actually own them does not stand up to scrutiny.

Moreover and I think this is probably the most important part to illustrate where the analogies fall short. You do not have to review and agree to a set of terms and conditions to purchase a banana or a can of soda.

Now, you can disagree with what I stated, but what I stated about steam is not opinion, It is not an interpretation. It is fact. You do not own anything in steam. It IS in their TOS.

http://store.steampowered.com/subscriber_agreement/

So I say so with all due respect, you can disagree with my statements, however your disapproval of them does not in any way make them any less factual. And this does go back to what I said before, given that this has to be explained in this level of detail does in fact illustrate how well the general gaming populous properly understand what Steam is.

Other thought. I do have to thank you. It has been about a year since I last reviewed the steam ToS. (I discontinued my steam account after steam went consumer hostile with their mandatory abdication of legal rights provision) It was interesting to learn that steam has finally suffered one blow by way of the German people standing up for justice. (Given this is a US based website, and the predominant language spoken is English, Ill not assume others can read German, and will post a translated copy of the German exception.

This was a development I was not aware of, but I am glad to see the positive effect of this correction.

However I will leave it at that as I have already derailed this thread enough. My sincere apologies for doing so as my intent was on topic.

This is kind of bad.

I mean its not even out yet, and people are trying to use it as a scam, i get its good in some ways , it must be good for people to use it like tis :p.

What is shitty tho is the people who kickstarted it cannot play yet however you can buy it on steam right now :(.

alj:
This is kind of bad.

I mean its not even out yet, and people are trying to use it as a scam, i get its good in some ways , it must be good for people to use it like tis :p.

What is shitty tho is the people who kickstarted it cannot play yet however you can buy it on steam right now :(.

I backed it and got the code in my email late last month - don't recall what the minimum tier was for it though.

 

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