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Update: Since consulting with his storefronts, Gallant has no way in which to implement this scheme and so everyone will be receiving their Steam Keys; GamerGate or not.

Indie Developer David S. Gallant, despite stating on his Facebook page that he will give all previous buyers of his game, I Get This Call Every Day, a free Steam key, has now decided that this offer will not apply to those who support the GamerGate consumer revolt.

The game, which Gallant made part-time while working at a call centre using a purposefully ugly art style drawn on a tablet using GIMP, reflects the ugliness he felt while working for a job which he hated and is a point-and -click adventure simulation of a typically annoying phone call he would receive. Gallant has had many struggles during the history of his game, and the gaming community reached out and helped.

According to his website, I Get This Call Every Day, which has been purchased almost 7000 times, is the seventh and most successful of Gallant’s creations. However, when the Toronto Star found the game and wrote a front page article stating Gallant’s job and that he created the game in reaction to his hatred of customers, he was promptly fired.

Luckily, the gaming press and gamers came to Gallant’s aid. After Gallant instigated an emailing campaign, Kotaku’s Patricia Hernandez, picked up the game and admired its strong message. After being fired from his job, new media gaming site, Polygon wrote a piece on how unjustly the Toronto Star had handled his interview in which he had never mentioned the company he worked for.  In order to raise money to attend Indiecade, Gallant set up an IndieGoGo page asking for just $650. After gaming website, Rock, Paper, Shotgun, found the campaign they pleaded readers to help out. The campaign ended up raising over $2000 from over 160 individuals.

However, Gallant’s struggles did not end there. He attempted twice to get his game Greenlit through popular PC gaming distribution platform, Steam, but it wasn’t until a popular YouTuber promoted his game that it eventually took hold.  After almost a year of being on Greenlight in total, he finally could sell his game to a wider audience.  Gallant has clarified that the game’s facebook page is outdated and the game will be coming to Steam.

While gifting his previous customers a Steam Key is a privilege and not a right, several consumers took to Twitter to complain about this exclusionary tactic. Some incorrectly complained that this could break discrimination laws or is committing fraud, however gifted Steam keys are at his discretion. His statement is still of concern to those who purchased his game after April 5th believing they would receive a Steam Key, who now will not. Due to this Facebook post that may be construed as a promise for a Steam Key, he will be issuing refunds of his purchased game on a case-by-case basis.

Others have commented on the current price of his game as of December 1st being set at $200, however, Gallant claims this is an anti-consumerist message against Cyber Monday.

While it is up to Gallant to decide what to do, TechRaptor would like to urge him to remember all the gamers who helped him discover his dream of developing a successful game, of going to IndieCade and who helped him bring his game to Steam. Echoing the words of several articles, Gallant claims that the people of GamerGate are not his audience.

I reached out to Mr Gallant for comment:

“I am familiar with TechRaptor, including it’s (sic) current stance on the hate movement that has harmed both my friends and my family. The information you are looking for is here https://storify.com/davidsgallant/i-get-this-call-every-day-is-coming-to-steam

Update: The IndieGogo funded Gallant’s attendance to IndieCade but his game was not entered.


Georgina Young

Contributor

British girl, currently in Japan. Surviving on a diet of retro games. Worshiping the god that is the Sega Megadrive. I like Nintendo.



  • Harrison Jaegermeister

    TBH I have seen better flash games back in the days of newgrounds w/c are free & MILES better than his. So, IMO dont give him money unless he really steps up his game. Also I think this violates the TOS of steam, right?

  • Braxus_Ravenguard

    Time to look elsewhere, seeing as he clearly has decided to look at us through a bullshit, oversimplified lense.

  • Mark Samenfink

    Anti-consumer, the clairion call of communism. “Everybody gets 1, except those who disagree with us politically.”

  • Haze Edgemaster

    When your game is barely being held afloat by a niche audience, segmenting that audience is akin to suicide.

  • “I’ll show this consumer revolt by being anti-consumer.”

    Ridiculous attempt at logic.

  • [CU]MadKnight Hatter

    I definitely think that NewGrounds has a far better standard of games than what this person is producing. Plus, it isn’t really a game more of a program that will continuously annoy you from the sound of it. Until he can actually prove he can make games that are better than that thing on steam, I won’t be buying from him.

  • ArsCortica

    “I barely managed to get my shitty MS paint game greenlighted, so I will now take a piss at the people who potentially helped me getting greenlighted”.

    Does not compute.

  • ColaFlavourChewits

    I find it hard to agree with his stance. What purpose is there in hurting his customers because of their affiliations? GamerGate is complex, with many different people from many different walks of life contributing. To say that it as an entity has hurt his friends and paying hurt unto hurt as revenge just seems, well, pointless.

    He loses sales, customers lose faith in him as a developer, but he gets a few pats on the back from other people who are extreme in their opposition. Doesn’t seem like a good deal, to be honest.

    You don’t gain advance dialogue with those you oppose by doing the things you believe they do as revenge; you do it by being willing to engage and discuss the facts without getting emotional. As it stands, the people of GamerGate have fit this role far better than those on the anti side, so it seems clear which side is the hate group.

  • Jake Martinez

    Wow, this guy is a complete edge lord.

  • ArsenicSundae

    Prior to that Facebook entry, it would have been at his discretion as to dissemination of those keys. But his statement constitutes a promise to consumers who previously purchased the game, that they would receive Steam keys. Reneging on that IS fraud and even if it didn’t directly break his ToS with Steam, it still may be grounds for removing the game altogether from the service. This is because the game being sold on that platform IS at Valve’s discretion.

    How Valve chooses to handle this petty little prima donna who feels justified in screwing with the rights of his consumers, can only be speculated on. However, I for one will be contacting them and urging them to drop his title from the platform. I have a feeling they’ve made more money from me over the years than they’ll make from the sale of this half-assed app.

  • Haze Edgemaster

    Quite frankly, I’m offended at the comparison.

  • ArsenicSundae

    You’re missing his point. He’s an SJW zealot. Your logic is lost on him. All he wants to do is hurt #gamergate by any means available to him. What we stand for is immaterial because he’s adopted “the narrative” and his calcified brain is incapable accepting contrary thought.

  • cptk

    To add to the reasons to be confused by this developers ridiculous decision.

    This guy got misrepresented by the mainstream media and lost his job so his response is to renegade on an agreement with a group of people misrepresented by the mainstream media.

    However, this is a guy who got in to bed with the usual suspects Kotaku, Polygon, RPS and without their signal boosting the game would be languishing with the rest of the low quality content at the bottom of Greenlight.

    Those sites made him and they will quite happily break him if he doesn’t tow the ideological line.

  • UpperCaseT

    So… he got fired from customer service for being a smarmy jerk.

    Then after months of crying that no one is giving him a fair shake for something that looks like it should be free, acts like a smarmy jerk by refusing to serve certain customers.

    Also…. who thr HELL paid for that?

  • JickMagger

    ‘Ugly’ isn’t the right phrase for this. There are many works out there with simple, harsh, or otherwise crude artwork which work because they serve a thematic or artistic choice (e.g. stuff by Ralph Steadmen, David Shrigley,Taiyō Matsumoto, cartoons like Squidbillies or Dr. Katz, webcomics like Sweet Bro and Hella Jeff, etc) and make it look good or visually interesting at the same time. This artwork just looks, well, bad. Like “I just made this in an afternoon on MS Paint” bad. I’m not familiar with Mr. Gallant’s other games or whether or not he made the artwork for those too, so I cannot really comment on his skills as an artist. But all I can say is that if he was going for ‘ironic bad’ or ‘stylistic bad’, he’s missed the mark and just gone into ‘bad bad’.

  • ColaFlavourChewits

    It’s his choice in the end. He can continue to ignore logic for some strange point-scoring, but in the long-run people will see this for what it is. In my case, I’ll just keep being logical about it, it’s safer that way.

  • AlienPickle

    1. Has it occurred to anyone that he’s using his $200 protest price, and this bullshit statement just to drum up press coverage for his shitty MS Paint looking game? You’re catering to it, of course.

    2. Are you detecting a pattern? Indie game so bad it can’t possibly succeed, add Kotaku, RockPaperShotgun, Polygon, Patricia Hernandez, the Indie Illuminati boosting a fellow social justice goon. Suddenly successful kickstarter and greenlight. Oh yeah.

  • Alex Three

    This guy sounds like a douche. From the openly mocking his customers then not owning that shit, to cranking up the price to make some statement (as if he’s not interested in financially benefiting from consumerism, as he sells his games)

    This anti gamergate thing is out of control. Sheep just believing what the media tells them about the people who want to change the media? Smh. I don’t want to support anyone who makes snap judgments. Refusing to help gamergate people is like refusing to help Ferguson protesters because cops you’ve met have been great. That’s obviously not the point. And yea there are some looters in the mix but they don’t represent the movement.

  • ColaFlavourChewits

    That’s an interesting point; since he did officially disregard the Facebook post and offered a refund he is not technically in the wrong anymore, but any distributors and publishers may well see his actions as something that could potentially harm their image in the future; they can’t be sure he wouldn’t do the same thing again given similar circumstance.

    On the other hand, at present making any kind of public announcement would only stir the pot, I would imagine Valve would avoid doing anything in public and would certainly lock down any participants in any discussion from speaking about it publicly too. Still, I had only thought it would be customers who would be angry, but it could be much worse than that.

  • ColaFlavourChewits

    Regarding point two; it just occurred to me that the reason unfun games about being poor, discriminated against or working in a crappy job are so popular with the usual suspects may be because it lets them claim to understand the lifestyle.

    We’ve seen that many of the anti-gg players are privileged, so these games could be a way for them to experience elements of a different life without the risks or the struggle that come with it. Living vicariously through media, one might say.

    It’s like the old Pulp song, Common People, brought to life.

  • Alex Three

    If anything agamergate supporter should be glad he outed himself as aprejudiced jerk. Anti gamergate means anti consumer. Pro corporation. Idon’t want to support indie game devs who are hurting their own interests. Though he’s a polygon puppet now, since they invented him. And he won some potentially corrupt indie game competitions, yay..

    If aregular O’Reilly guest said he wouldn’t sell to “libtards” would you want to buy? Liberal or not i say no. But the point is, it’s but surprising to see someone so financially dependant on polygon spouting their rhetoric.

  • Katrina Black

    Mr. Gallant might do well to realize that he doesn’t get to choose his audience. His audience chooses him.

  • I’ve never even heard of this game before.

    Look, folks, the only anti-GG attack that I’ve actually cared about so far was by R-Pi (in that I was deeply disappointed that an educational charity should promote arbitrary authority and reversal of the burden of proof) and even that didn’t affect me personally since I’m not on Twitter. Has any major business publicly taken an anti-GG stance? No. We’re winning.

    And we’ll continue to win, because major businesses know that you don’t stay major by pissing off your customer base. Ask Gerald Ratner. (His “total crap” speech was the “Gamers are dead” of the ’90s. Discuss. 🙂 )

  • suicidalpixel

    Personally I would be ashamed to have this -thing- in my steam library. Apparently every untalented prick can call themself developer these days, and on top of that have its “game” released on steam. Don’t give them your time and your money. There’s just too many good actual games out there worth playing and supporting, why waste even few minutes of your life on this type of utter garbage?

  • Sebastian Mikulec

    It seems the course of action, as a consumer, is simple. Next time he needs help to get a game made or greenlit, don’t support him if you dislike his practices, not financially, not by voting for his game, not by word of mouth. Simple as. If he still has enough support by way of the sites mentioned in this article and whatever like-minded followers he has to get the game to be made and/or appear on Steam, then more power to him.

    *shrugs*

  • ColaFlavourChewits

    Thinking about that; if he was fired due to his game being showcased in a newspaper that directly stated his job, shouldn’t be be all for a movement dedicated to improving ethics?

    Also, it’s interesting how many of these ‘games’ (I use the term loosely) have failed on Greenlight, only to be picked up by a prominent critic/youtuber and subsequently made it through on sympathy.

    It’s a bit like that one entrant in American Idol or something who can’t really sing, but they’ve had a hard life so all the middle-aged people sitting comfortably at home vote for them to feel like they’ve done their bit for the world.

  • SirBittle

    I’ve played this game before, at least a free version of it, and considered myself a fan of David after playing it. I enjoyed the aesthetic of it and think, despite the style, it is much more a game than something like Depression Quest. “I Get This Call Every Day” had actual failure states where you lose your job, get reprimanded, and have to start over completely if you want to see the true ending.

    It’s bleak, either way. I enjoyed the message he was trying to give. Like I said, it made me a fan of his work.

    That was until he chose to insult and block me on Twitter for just trying to understand his position.

    https://twitter.com/SirBittle/status/516727230244724736

    David is unfortunately caught up on the wrong side of things, I think. I still hope the best for him. But I’ve lost respect for him as well, and him withholding keys like this just solidifies it for me. He’s proven himself untrustworthy.

  • UpperCaseT

    Yeah he’s pretty much Sanjaya of game devs.

    I would think his firing was more due to the content of the game openly disparaging customers and allegedly using real calls as his source material.

    It’s funny that he says the newspaper did a hit piece by outing that he worked for a government agency. They used information from the internet about him. He put that out there himself and they connected the dots.

  • MacNillus

    Shitty guy.

  • AlienPickle

    Here’s my new game. TAOMED.

  • Reptile

    I find your lack of professionalism disturbing…

  • KLLRFRST

    This seems like an attempt to bait #GamerGate in hopes that we’ll “harass” him, and then the SJW army will White Knight to his side and boost the sales of his “game”.

    So basically, he’s pulling an LW.

    DO NOT ENGAGE WITH HIM. THAT IS WHAT HE WANTS. AVOID TOUCHING THE POOP.

  • ArsenicSundae

    Can’t say I’m averse to watching an SJW commit career suicide. /popcorn

  • Laytonaster

    Saying that Davy shot himself in the foot would be an understatement.

  • KLLRFRST

    Yep. This is right out of the LW playbook.

    1. Make a shitty non-game in less than 30 minutes

    2. Try to get it greenlit on Steam

    3. FAIL.

    4. Make up a narrative of being harassed/oppressed

    5. Kotaku/RPS/etc play White Knight, give positive press

    6. PROFIT!

    The best part is that he beat ZQ at her own game, since he didn’t have to fuck a bunch of dudes to get his game attention.

  • KLLRFRST

    OH NOES! I WON’T BE ABLE TO PLAY HIS SHITTY NON-GAME! HE HATH WOUNDED ME, AND NOW I REGRET MY AFFILIATION WITH #GAMERGATE! WOE IS ME! *falls to ground, dies*

  • ArsenicSundae

    I wouldn’t buy from him based only on his disdain for his customers, I don’t care how good the product he’s hawking might be. If a business treats me like shit, I stop dealing with them. Simple as that. It’s the reason why I don’t frequent Gamasutra, Polygon or RPS anymore, and instead come to sites like TechRaptor or Niche Gamer for gaming news. Respect earns my patronage. These folks provide it, the big guys couldn’t even spell the fucking word.

  • Hereweard Fyning

    “contact me with the email used to purchase the game.”
    I sense a Doxxing coming if anyone does that.

  • King of Zeroes

    Well clearly he doesn’t need us anymore. Hope his new friends in the Bay area can pay off his debts through Patreon.

  • Throwout all the #Gamergate rhetoric and what you have here is a legitimate issue of a bussinessman screwing over the people that got him to the top.

  • Michael

    His announcement to mine customer data for political affiliation (https://archive.today/swWRC) might be violating data protection laws:

    https://www.priv.gc.ca/information/pub/guide_org_e.pdf
    “Personal information can only be used for the purposes for which it was collected. If an organization is going to use it for another purpose, consent must be obtained again.”

    If he collects said customer data via EU businesses (e.g. Valve S.a.r.l. Luxemburg) the directive 95/46/EC applies (http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=CELEX:31995L0046:en:HTML):
    “Article 8 section 1: Member States shall prohibit the processing of personal data revealing racial or ethnic origin, political opinions, religious or philosophical beliefs, trade-union membership, and the processing of data concerning health or sex life.”

  • You made valid points and weren’t offensive in any way. It’s a bummer that he blocked you. I’ll follow you to help make up for it.

  • Niwjere

    “hate movement that has harmed both my friends and my family”

    Get a job. Preferably a job that has nothing to do with vidya. Have you considered working in a call center? Oh wait…

  • PancakeWizard

    Tbh, he sounds like some over-politicised moron, that’s too much hassle to bother with. The kind of guy you’d just walk away from if they started chatting to you in the pub. Probably self-identifies as a ‘tortured artist’.

  • necrogeddon

    Wait.

    He posted something on a widely popular hashtag on public website Twitter dot com and then got upset that people replied to him?

  • Reptile

    Has the word ‘opresses’, deep plot, emotional end 11/10

  • Reptile

    “Disarm the cops”. Why I’m not surprised?

  • Beebleboob beeblebrox

    Idiot should write a book on his troubles, call it “My Struggle”

  • Brit Bong

    This sounds like a cry for attention.
    Ignore him.

  • SirBittle

    Seems to be the case exactly. He tried to do pull the same again at a later date. Seems to be a common thread amongst some antiGG.

  • SirBittle

    Thanks, mate.

  • SirBittle

    What gets me is this:

    “Gallant claims this is an anti-consumerist message against Cyber Monday”

    He’s anti-consumer, but wants people to buy his game? Seems kind of hypocritical to me.

  • NorBdelta

    I am at a loss to describe this, short of lunacy. Its one thing to take a stance, it is completely another to alienate and deny a purchased good. I am sure that falls under anti-discrimination laws.

  • Blockchains

    This game is complete shit. It’s even worse than Depression Quest (which is impressive), so who cares?

  • TheCynicalReaper

    It figures. Who needs pretentious asses like him anyway? We’ve got way better titles coming together through crowd-funding and steam that ARE pro-consumer and actually care about gamers, like
    Kingdom Come: Deliverance and SeedScape.

    Why would I play as a tired call center guy in flash when I can play as a heroic son of a smith or an adorable seedguy who tends to cute crops and DAW ITS SO CUTE

  • hots

    Parallel logic to “I’ll show this gamer revolt by being anti-gamer”

  • hots

    There’s no patreon link, must be bugged

  • Fenrir007

    I have a question for you americans out there.

    If someone says you will get something as a courtesy alongside certain goods you bought, wouldn’t this be setting a reasonable expectation of acquiring this secondary product on the consumer, possibly fueling his will to acquire the merchandise, and as such become an integral part of the sale equation? Isn’t this protected by american consumer laws?

    Courtesy, to me, ultimately means “free of charge”. If you offer something for free alongside the sale of a product, you are obligated to provide that under the laws of my country, unless you disclose something like “while supplies last” there.

    Edit: with this pic, the plot thickens:

    http://i.imgur.com/ijzuzko.jpg

  • anonymoose

    He’s just trying to pull a Jonathan Blow and stir up enough attention and drama that more people find out who he is and in turn his games.

  • Blank Generation

    10/10 Citizen Kane of gaming. Can we sleep together now?

  • Blank Generation

    Isn’t it funny how all these anti-GamerGate punks all make games that require no knowledge of programming to make and have basically no gameplay? The only one of these people with any grasp of the fundamentals is Phil fucking Fish.

  • Ackbar

    I feel sorry for his wife. Must have to bust her ass to supplement his shitty income that he has no problem making worse.

  • Eric Bagley

    The player character is obviously a penis, therefore the alien couldn’t possibly be oppressing him. Stop spreading your patriarchal lies. 01/10

  • Yup, if sales were made based on a promise to provide he’s obliged to provide an alternative option. Wouldn’t go so far as to say what he did was “fraud” (as some have suggested) because that implies intent to deceive, which given his reasoning isn’t necessarily the case. Agreed also that whilst he may think it’s at his discretion, selling through a 3rd party obligates him to THEIR ToS (it’s their customers he’s messing with).

  • Valve generally don’t make public statements about game/product removal but they do notify the author and individual customers with refund/exchange etc. notices.

  • dsadsada

    Plus just look at that alien. Its hands are up like it’s being mugged and its legs are spread. This is clearly rape.

  • dsadsada

    I don’t understand how he wasn’t expecting that. I don’t even use twitter or social media in general and I knew that would happen.

  • dsadsada

    To be fair, I wouldn’t wish a call center on anybody.

    …fast food is slightly less punishing but at least you don’t have to go through hoops trying to work with somebody over the phone who has no idea what the two of you are even discussing or can’t even tell that their computer isn’t turning on because it’s unplugged.

  • Erthwjim

    Disclosure: I used to work for a call center doing internet support for a large cable company.

    So this guy used to be a call center agent, so he should know that call center agents get bad reps even though most are perfectly fine and do their job well. The issue of course would be that there are a few bad call center agents out there as well as a few bad outsourced call center companies out there, but customers judge all call center agents based on those bad experiences. With this knowledge he should know that the way gamergate is being painted falls under a similar type of accusation. So I would ask why does he feel this way about gamergate given he’s probably been labeled similarly when he was a call center agent? Unless of course he really was one of those shitty call center agents and didn’t do his job well so the stereotypes of call center agents weren’t so much stereotypes when it came to him.

  • kirakila

    Dear Mr.Gallant!
    Congratulation, you won a “How to effectively shoot yourself in the foot” award! If Paranautical Activity incident taught us anything, it’s how Steam sales crucial for indie devs’ profits (that, and how you don’t want to mess with GabeN, of course). Though I doubt this particular game would do well on Steam. Pro-tip: because it’s shit.

  • Madbrainbox

    But nobody likes a tourist.

  • Madbrainbox

    RPS did just that last year:
    “So talking of which, I’ve just noticed that ‘I Get This Call Every Day’ developer David S Gallant – the guy who was fired from his job because he made a game about it – is fundraising to get himself to IndieCade this year. He’s asked for just C$650. Wouldn’t it be brilliant if he got, say, thousands?”
    https://archive.today/yOSzD

  • necrogeddon

    Oh my god why are all of these people **so fucking stupid**

  • King of Bros

    Indie devs that will never achieve anything.
    You’re supposed to suck the customer’s cock,at least at the beginning.

  • Pablo Hernández

    lol wtf is that crap? you can’t call that piece of shit a game

  • Syndromic

    I wouldn’t even play the game if it was free. Western game dev really need to take some lessons from Japanese Dev on how to be humble.

  • To be fair, the successful Greenlight campaign predated GamerGate. Gallant cancelled it originally because he had a similar hissy-fit about GG back in August and wanted Steam to ban pro-GG accounts or something (can’t remember the actual details), but got talked back into posting the game later on.

  • Erik Wedin

    Since “customer” and “audience” is not the same thing his message already was epic fail.

  • Paul Abruzzo

    How amazing to find out a few days ago in the interviews tech raptor published that Phil Fish stole everything for that game!

  • Blank Generation

    KEK. Really? Link that shit.

  • Paul Abruzzo