NekoNyan Software finally made an official announcement about the state of Hello, Goodbye, as well as the future of their releases on the Steam platform.
The announcement comes after the all-ages version of Hello, Goodbye was banned from release on the Steam store. NekoNyan reached out to Valve for clarification on the ban, but they have not received a response. In a post made on December 9th, 2018, the visual novel outfit stated…
“As many of you have heard, our upcoming title Hello,Goodbye was recently banned on Steam. This is very alarming because the build that was submitted didn’t contain any nudity or sexual content whatsoever. It could be a mistake or just a kneejerk reaction of some Steam rep, but the problem is that we have no way of knowing that because Valve is unwilling to communicate, which is beyond frustrating.
“You often read people bring up the argument that publishers could avoid going to Steam in the first place, but that’s not really an option. There are titles where you can easily make a return even without Steam for sure, but we’re going for the big titles with outstanding quality that a majority of the community is asking and wishing for, and these titles are expensive.
“Now to make things clear, we aren’t going to really panic or change anything at the moment since this is still just a minor blow to us that isn’t going to affect much in the long run, but we need to keep in mind that this can happen again, and also with titles where it would be a much bigger issue.”
NekoNyan is one of several visual novel creators who have been targeted by certain employees at Valve who have been on a banning spree lately, removing a variety of games from Steam using vague terms such as “sexually suggestive” content involving minors, and the “exploitation of minors”.
Two of Valve’s employees have been leading the charge against visual novels and anime games, Jason Ruymen and Arisa Sudangnoi.
When developers have attempted to reach out for answers or clarification regarding the bans, including the developer of The Key To Home, which was rated ‘T’ for Teen by the ESRB and had no sexual content or nudity depicted within the game, Valve refused to explain how they came to the decision they did for banning the game.
This also clearly goes against Valve’s own policies, where they stated that they would only ban games that were either “straight-up trolling” or “illegal”, but in cases like Hello, Goodbye, the game is neither trolling nor illegal.
This has forced NekoNyan into a rather precarious position for their physical release, as they’ll need to weigh the costs and consequences of dealing with future games being banned from Steam. They noted that they’ll be able to deal with Hello, Goodbye taking the hit but they’re investigating crowdfunding options for their planned physical releases of games. They mentioned in the blog post…
“The downside is that we currently don’t have any financial leeway, and the situation with Steam is only adding additional risk.
“We discussed this matter extensively within the company and arrived at the conclusion that there are only two available options to us here. We either wait until we have released one or two more big titles, or we could resort to a pre-sale/crowdfunding kind of deal for physical releases, much like Frontwing, for instance. We want to hear your opinion on this matter, though. If we find that a majority of the community is strictly against the idea, we won’t do it.”
They haven’t finalized the decision yet, but this is looking like their only viable option for now, unless Valve actually decides to respond and answer the developers who have their games banned.
(Thanks for the msoltyspl)