Afro Samurai 2: Revenge of Kuma holds the second lowest Metascore of any PlayStation 4 game, at least at the time of this writing. Critics and consumers browbeat the first of (what the developers meant to be) a three-volume continuation of the bloody, hip hop-heavy anime. Our review also chastised “the horrific graphics and sound design, poor combat and a nonsensical story.”
Weak sales were sure to follow, but a complete removal of the game from Steam and Sony’s PlayStation Store? It almost breaks my heart, until I recall Volume 1’s defective status. In a recent CGMagazine interview, Steve Escalante (the general manager for publisher Versus Evil) disclosed the facts about Afro Samurai 2’s sudden digital exodus.
In Steve’s words:
The game was a failure. We could not do, in good conscience, volume 2 and volume 3. So we’ve begun the process, it’s been a long process to figure it out because Sony has never really had to do this in this way, but we’re returning all the money. So across the board we’re putting out an apology saying ‘sorry about this.’
Steve also suggested “it wasn’t that the game was broken or buggy, people just didn’t like it.” Maybe the Versus Evil team primarily browsed the Steam reviews, but I did watch friends and colleagues reproduce a glitch that allowed the protagonist Kuma to glitch through the world’s geometry. When accidental or intended, losing story progress to bugs indicates a game is not fit for market.
Let that be a regrettable lesson, developers. Buyers should rest easy knowing their Afro Samurai 2: Revenge of Kuma money will return shortly, but releasing Volume 1 as a slipshod mess could stain Versus Evil’s reputation for the near future, if not permanently.
Are you one of the unfortunate (now fortunate) people affected by this news? If so, tell us what you thought about Afro Samurai 2: Revenge of Kuma in the comments below.