Indie game developer Mike Maulbeck was recently taught a valuable lesson in common sense this week, but the lesson was such a tough one that he’s had to cut ties from the development team that he very well may have permanently ruined. This Wednesday news report shares that he’s had to sell his half of Code Avarice to his partner. He also claims that he won’t be making any money off of the game Paranautic Activity — which seems to have failed as quickly as it launched, thanks to Mike. Paranautic Activity had only been on the Steam Marketplace for a handful of hours before it was yanked by Valve, and for a very good reason. You see, they don’t take kindly to game developers making death threats against their employees — and that is precisely what Maulbeck did.
This entire situation took place because Valve put the tag “early access” on the game Paranautic Activity, which apparently sent Maulbeck into a rage. After some heated Twitter posts about the issue, the indie game developer launched into a full on tirade against the co-founder of Valve Gabe Newell, going so far as to make clear death threats against him. He said the following:
“I am going to kill Gabe Newell. He is going to die.”
Mike Maulbeck also accused Valve of having some kind of monopoly over the online video gaming industry, which is asinine since there are outlets like Humble and GOG, as well as EA’s own Origin platform. That’s just a few examples of the many platforms available to game developers who are trying to live their dreams. Complaining about Steam/Valve is one thing, but to actually threaten to murder someone is not only incredibly stupid, but it’s illegal. Currently it’s not known if Mike Maulbeck will be brought on any charges associated with these potentially credible threats of violence, but he has already suffered consequences for his actions.
In response to Maulbeck’s death threats against Gabe Newell, Valve has removed the game Paranautic Activity from the Steam Marketplace — a move that has deeply upset other members of the Code Aravice development team. These developments are what caused Maulbeck to sell his half of the company and sever his relationship with them — in hopes of Valve forgiving Code Aravice to allow them to continue their relationship without him. However, it doesn’t look like this is going to happen anytime soon.
Mike Maulbeck and the rest of Code Aravice may now have to write off their hard work and start over because of this childish outburst. This is a sad reality that indie developers need to use as a lesson in how not to act.