Friday The 13th : The Game
It’s been an emotional year. Developed by ‘Illfonic’ and published by ‘Gun Media’ Friday the 13th released back in May 2017. To say it’s been an interesting ride would be an understatement.
The game became the butt of many jokes and internet memes on it’s release as it seemed unfinished. Servers crashing, character models freezing, players dropping out, glitchy animations and Chad’s glorious screaming face all lead to the game getting panned by critics and it looked doomed from the start.
Against the Odds
The funny thing is though……it wasn’t doomed. Sure it was a mess and sometimes unplayable but it did have a hidden special power……it was fun! Chad’s ridiculous facial expressions, untimely glitches and an overpowered Jason lead to some hilarious gameplay. The player base seemed to grow regardless of faults and it became a very fun game to broadcast across twitch and YouTube.
It was always clear that this was a passion project from the developers and they continued to fix bugs, tweak gameplay and add content. Sure some of their updates lead to even more bugs but Friday the 13th already had charm and a growing player base. It seemed to succeed in spite of it’s short comings. In fact, I believe players loved it more because of it’s flaws.
Hitting it’s Stride
After constant tweaks, new characters added, new maps and the addition of the Virtual Cabin (A puzzle game which was actually very good and steeped in movie lore). Things seemed on the up and up. Illfonic released a DLC roadmap with lots of upcoming content including new emotes, Jason X and a new gameplay mode. It seemed that from small beginnings this game would surpass all expectations and triumph. The future looked good for Friday the 13th.
However not everything was rosy in the background. An ongoing lawsuit for the rights to the movies was taking place and unfortunately this ultimately affected the future of the game. In June 2018 the studio were forced to stop making content or any additional features for the game. Only minor bug fixes to the existing game would be allowed from this point forward while the court case was still ongoing. A statement from Gun media read as follows :
“We’ve now been forced to accept that the lawsuit makes future content for the game, including alternate play modes, new playable Jasons and Counselors, and new maps, unfeasible now or in the future. Although the listed content types will be affected, we remain committed to launching dedicated servers on our console platforms and providing the continued maintenance and bug fixing important to supporting our fan base.”
Although fans initially hoped that everything was being put on hold, the reality was worse than that. As a games studio, they simply cannot afford to sit and wait to see if the court case goes okay. They have confirmed that they will have to move on from the game and pursue other projects. So alas…..Friday the 13th is no more! They have promised they will continue support for the servers but I believe the player base will start to drop off dramatically and it won’t be long before nobody is playing the game.