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The Day Before was destroyed by a “hate campaign,” dev says

The Day Before developer Fntastic has just put out the most baffling statement I've ever seen, so let's break down what they say together.

The Day Before Fntastic statement: a grizzled survival man stares into the camera

The Day Before developer Fntastic has re-emerged, claiming that a “hate campaign” started by the internet brought the game down in a frankly absurd statement to the public. The Day Before recently saw its servers shut down, with Fntastic also closing down mere days after the game’s disastrous release.

At this point, The Day Before is a zombie game that just won’t stay dead. Despite Fntastic’s closure and the servers shutting down this week, the studio has released a statement responding to claims from players and the press since the disastrous launch late last year.

“We worked hard and honestly on the game for five years. We didn’t take a penny from users, didn’t use crowdfunding, and didn’t offer pre-orders,” Fntastic says. Unpaid volunteers did dominate the team though, as Fntastic said in 2022 that its “culture is based on the idea of volunteering.”

On the topic of refunds, Fntastic says it forcibly gave refunds to everyone who bought the game, adding “How many companies return money like that?”

The Day Before Fntastic statement: a statement on A4 from Fntastic about The Day Before

Fntastic then addresses stories from people who claim they worked on the game, saying “We’re unsure whether these employees are real or not, but we had excellent relationships on our team […] We offered an extra non-working day off each month, vacation pay, and timely salary payments, along with the option of working remotely.”

This contradicts a statement made by a mod on the Day Before’s Discord server, alleging that Fntastic was radio silent with them while chaos unfolded as players got into the game. The mod alleged that Fntastic “tried to throw us under the bus for their s**t.” Another volunteer claims they were treated “like crap.”

Fntastic then shifts blame to “certain bloggers” in their statement, saying they made huge money by creating “false content” that triggered a “gold rush” to get content out before release.

When it comes to promised features we never saw, Fntastic says “It’s all about focus. The negative bias instilled by certain bloggers making money on hate affected perceptions of the game.”

Fntastic then says to look at Dr. Disrespect’s “unbiased gameplay,” explaining that the YouTuber liked the game despite initial bugs. “The game received improved reviews over the weekend. Unfortunately, the hate campaign had already inflicted significant damage.” If by improved reviews Fntastic means an ‘overwhelmingly negative’ Steam response, it’d be right.

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To close out the statement, Fntastic says “By the way, after sales closed, many people wrote to us that bloggers had deceived them and they like the game, and they asked for access. We also heard that petitions were created to continue development, and on the black market, the game’s price exceeded $200, and some began to make their own mods.”

Steam keys for The Day Before were available to purchase on eBay after the shooter was delisted from Valve’s storefront. Whether eBay, one of the most popular commerce sites in history, constitutes the “black market,” is a matter for debate. Servers for The Day Before have now been closed permanently.

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