Last month, fans of the popular bank-robbing first-person shooter, Payday 2, were left outraged by developer Overkill Software’s decision to introduce microtransactions into the gameplay, despite previously reassuring players that it was something they would never resort to. But alas, the studio succumbed to the idea of selling premium items for real currency to help them boost their profits, turning Payday 2 into more of a ‘pay-to-win’ experience.
The main source of all the fury was the game’s Black Market update in October, which gave players the opportunity to obtain stat-changing weapon skins from safes, with the catch being that the safes require a $2.50/£1.60 drill to be cracked. The backlash was ferociously scathing, causing the game’s Steam community moderators to step down from their post, themselves disagreeing with the new changes.
After publicly defending their decision, claiming that the microtransactions were a financial necessity for supporting the growth of the team and for developing the upcoming DLC, producer Almir Listo has posted an apology on Payday 2‘s community page, openly admitting that the studio has made some mistakes.
The past few weeks have been some of the most challenging in the history of this community. Players have been angry with us, media have written about us en masse and our volunteer moderators went on strike. For all the distress we’ve caused the past few weeks, I’d just like to take the time and say that we’re sorry. We’ve done a lot of things right in the past, but these past few weeks we screwed up.
We need to get better at many things, and we will do our best to improve as soon as possible.
Listo goes on to discuss the ways in which the team are working to improve the situation, which were discussed in a meeting with the disgruntled moderators on Friday. They have talked about ways to improve the stat-boost and reward system based on suggestions from the community.
He also stressed that Overkill will be greatly improving their connection with players in general, promising to have eight Overkill team members take up an active role in the community discussions where they will engage with fans a lot more. These developers are aiming to start their new roles in the forums this week. The studio has also arranged further meets with modders and high-profile players to help discuss improvements for Payday 2.
At the moment, these are just discussions—nothing is set in stone. Whether Overkill will be able to make good on these promises remains to be seen in the near future.