Update: Zero Dollarz contacted us on Steam briefly about it. We hope to get some more information but here is what they had to say on the matter:
It really is quite hard (it requires valve to handle it if they see your request, but a little searching we found a dev with the same request who was told to warn users ) to get a game that has been released off steam while you "repair it". We are not happy with the current state of deORBIT. We would have liked to hide it from the store ( but not remove it from the libraries of the users ) , fix what we don't like and then show it again with some marketing and price cut
Putting your time and effort into creating your own video game is a monumental task. deORBIT's developer, Midnight640, spent two years on the game, teaching himself coding and 3D modeling in the process. It launched on Steam on August 17th, 2015. Only now it seems the game has been acquired by a new developer, and they don't want people to buy it.
deORBIT is a first person puzzle game that sees players try to fix a damaged space station. The game is rather open: after a tutorial tells you what to do you're on your own. There are multiple solutions to each puzzle, and the game has managed to hold a 70% "mostly positive" review average on Steam. Despite the good reviews there weresome problems pertaining to the reviews, notably with developer Midnight640 leaving a positive review on his own game without disclosing that he's the developer.
Yet on April 4th, 2016 the description and update notes of the game changed to the following:
WARNING! Due to steam politics we are currently unable to hide this IP from the store and we feel obligated to warn you. The rights to this game have been acquired by Zero Dollarz and we are further developing it right now. DO NOT BUY IT IS NOT FINISHED ! Thank you!
Likewise they have also posted to the game's discussion page a few times, asking for fans to give their opinions on the game's current state and on the tutorial. It seems like this new developer is working to try and improve deORBIT and was hoping to iron out the glitches and add new content to the game before putting it back onto Steam. It should be noted that Zero Dollarz has no other releases on Steam, the only game accredited to them is deORBIT. At this time, other then their steam account, we have been unable to find further information on Zero Dollarz. It's worth mentioning that there were no changes to the actual game itself: yesterday the only thing that was changed was putting Zero Dollarz as the developer and publisher.
It is potentially noteworthy that Zero Dollarz is claiming it is "steam politics" preventing the game from being delisted, rather than "steam policy". At the current time it's unsure if this is just a strange choice in wording or if they mean something else by this.
We are trying to reach out to all parties including Zero Dollarz, Midnight640, and Valve. We will update when we have more information.
Regardless, for now you can still buy deORBIT on Steam for $4.99 if you're okay with it not quite being ready for prime time yet.
What are your thoughts on this one? Do you thin Zero Dollarz is interested in fixing up the game? Or is something fishy going on? Let us know in the comments!