The exclusivity deal which pulled the latest Metro from Steam in favour of the Epic Games store came pretty close to the Metro Exodus release date. So close, that many players were left wondering what would become of the game’s physical release, since the manufacturing process typically happens well ahead of time. The answer? Stickers.
Yes, as folks like lashman and Scalou have noted on Twitter, boxed retail versions of Metro Exodus on PC feature the Steam logo prominently on the back of the case. But since the box now comes with an Epic Games store key, there’s a sticker which pastes the Epic logo over top of the Steam branding. If you want to pretend you’re playing the game through Steam, it seems easy enough to peel off.
It’s a silly example of the broader controversy over Metro Exodus and its Epic Games store exclusivity. This comes after varied statements from varied branches of THQ Nordic, a review-bombing campaign, the buried news that the game will return to Steam a year after launch, and a plea from Metro author Dmitry Glukhovsky for fans not to “betray” the series.
In short, it’s been a bit of a mess.
None of those problems seem to be bringing down the game itself, though – in our Metro Exodus PC review, Harry says it’s “the strongest in the series, and one of the best post-apocalyptic games ever made.”
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Our Metro Exodus score roundup shows a broadly positive response to the game from other critics, as well. Whether the vocal Steam loyalists are numerous to affect the game’s future remains to be seen – but the comedy of errors around the platform change certainly won’t help.