War Z update charging players for instant respawn, Valve investigating policy

Wednesday, 19 December 2012 11:21 GMT By Dave Cook

The War Z has seen a controversial launch on Steam, with many listed features on the game’s product descriptor being unavailable at release. It gets worse however, as respawning in the game used to take anywhere up to 60 minutes. Following an update patch it now takes up to four hours – unless you pay real money. Valve is now investigating the studio’s policy.

Kotaku reports that while The War Z has rocketed up to the top of the Steam best seller charts, the respawn microtransaction issue has seen developer Hammerpoint Games come under fire on Reddit.

Just to reiterate the baffling facts here: if you die in The War Z it can take up to 60 minutes before you respawn. Now, after this morning’s update that can take up to four hours unless you pay an instant respawn fee of 50GC (gold coins), which equates to about 50GC, or $0.40.

It’s chump change we’re sure you’ll agree, but considering that you can only buy GC points in blocks of $5, it’s a feature that will add up significantly over time. What’s next? Charging people per the bullet? Worse still, The War Z isn’t free-to-play. It’s costs $15 at base price.

Eurogamer adds that Valve has apologised to its customers and is now investigating Hammerpoint’s policy.

Over on The War Z’s Steam forum, Valve’s Al Farnsworth responded to the issue after the forum become flooded with complaints on the matter, and replied, “We take these complaints seriously and are investigating the issue.

“There has been a lot of traffic in this forum – a new topic every minute for the last day and a half, with thousands of replies. All that makes moderation a very difficult task.

“If you have concerns or criticisms about the game, you are free to post those in this forum. However, please keep your posts on-topic and about the game. There’s no reason to personally insult other posters, the developers, or the moderators. Please keep the discussion rules and guidelines in mind when posting.”

Forum user “Kewk” has come under fire for banning forum users who aim criticism at The War Z, suggesting that damage control is in effect.

Please chip in with your thoughts on this issue. I’m very keen to hear what you, the readers think about this.