Facepunch wanted to repay fans for their support by having a casual meeting. Their plans were thwarted by disturbing news.
From the very beginning, Rust somehow attracted inadequate players like a magnet. Cheaters, hackers, dissatisfied people taking out their aggression on other players and developers – they have always been present in this game since the release. However, this time they went too far.
Developed under pressure from toxic players
Rust is a sandbox survival game that has continued to be popular since its early access release in 2013. The developers’ attention to the project, which continues to receive monthly updates, has steadily kept old players and attracted new ones.
Facepunch members have so far not allowed hostile fans to influence the development of their game and have not been willing to integrate with players.
On the occasion of this year’s Game Developers Conference, the developers wanted to organize an informal, almost private meeting in a coffee shop to present their plans.
To the surprise of the community, the so-called gathering was suddenly cancelled. What is the reason? Caring for the life of the studio staff.
Due to the unexpected turn of events, fans asked the members of Facepunch for an explanation. Rust producer Alistair MacFarlane responded that:
- community workers face daily threats;
- individuals from the “chat community” make every effort to attack individual employees;
- employees and their families have had to change personal information due to doxing (i.e. making personal information public), often taking a toll on their mental health.
- the location of the canceled event was made public, and after death threats, the studio decided it would pose too much of a security risk and cause too much concern for the staff;
- the threats are very troubling, and the studio plans to take them seriously.
Despite rather trivial reasons (according to MacFarlane, most of them are due to dissatisfaction with the changes being made to the game), the developers did not want to risk it and canceled the meeting.
Online fan reaction to studio warning
Following the announcement of the decision to cancel the San Francisco coffee shop meeting, most of the commenters showed great patience and support.
The saddest thing, however, is that after years of exploitation of the game, the behavior of potentially dangerous fans no longer surprises anyone. “It’s Rust”, “The game’s most venomous fan community strikes again” – such comments appear on Reddit or Twitter in surprising numbers.
There’s a reason the Rust fan community has become infamous as one of the most toxic in the gaming industry. This is the first time game developers have responded so strongly to the dangerous behavior of its participants. Do you think this is the beginning of the fight against toxic players?