Indie platformer game Only Up! has been removed from Steam as developer SCKR Games cites “stress” as a need to discontinue the game. Only Up! features similar gameplay to Getting Over It with Bennett Foddy and Jump King, making for a sub-genre of difficult climbing games.
Now, if I had a nickel for every time Only Up! was removed from Steam, I’d have two nickels. Which isn’t a lot, but it’s weird that it happened twice. On June 30, 2023, the game was removed due to the use of copyrighted assets, but returned just one day later with the infringing assets removed. This time around, SCKR Games claims to have been “under a lot of stress” for the months since it released in May 2023.
And that’s giving gamers some unpleasant flashbacks as they remember how the downfall of the mobile game Flappy Bird unfolded. The game was created by Vietnamese video game artist and programmer Dong Nguyen, who works under the company .Gears. Flappy Bird lasted less than a year before it was removed from the iOS App Store and Android’s Google Play Store. This was due to Nguyen claiming that he felt inescapable guilt over what he considered to be the game’s addictive nature and overuse.
Needless to say, gamers weren’t happy. Additionally, once the game was removed from smartphones, it couldn’t be re-downloaded, which led to a surge in price for smartphones with Flappy Bird still installed. In the wake of its removal, several like-minded games emerged. And now that Only Up! has suffered the same fate, gamers are witnessing history repeating itself.
There are, of course, comments finding fault with SCKR Games’ decision, as they did with Nguyen’s. However, despite the criticism towards both developers, many are sad to see Only Up! go, even if it isn’t forever.