Indie Game Ends Abruptly Because Devs Ran Out of Cash

When you buy a game, you expect to get a complete product. Sure, sometimes that product is garbage, but it is nonetheless a complete piece of garbage. Indie title Dark Matter released on Steam October 17, and while the overall feedback has been positive, this promising title ends abruptly — as though the devs ran out of money and tossed up a screen saying, “you win!” completely at random.

A few hours into the game — reports indicate approximately four to five hours — upon opening a door, players are met with a screen of text that describes the remainder of the story. No boss battle, no narrative climax. The game just ends.

On the Steam forums, the developers responded to confused players, explaining that they had to shorten the game due to insufficient funds and time. They wrote:

“No, the full story is indeed not complete yet because originally we wanted a longer game (12-16 hours) but couldnt finish it completely due to time and money (and Kickstarter failing). So, we choose to go with a 6-8 hour game instead to bring something out to the world and show everyone the world of Dark Matter.

“We are going to change the “to be continued” text to something else, to make sure this will be the end of the game as is in a clear msg to everyone.”

They later clarified that, while the story is incomplete, the game itself is:

What I meant is, with a successful Kickstarter we could have made a longer game, expanded the story. But then it would likely have been more expensive too. The current Dark Matter on Steam is a complete game in itself though.

There are many things to explore and many ways to go through and many things to discover. If people just run through it then yes it will be less then those 6 hours.

In the game’s description, nowhere does it suggest to prospective customers that they may be buying a product that is, in one way or another, incomplete.

You can watch a dismayed player’s reaction to hitting the ending screen right here:

“This game went from really cool to… what the hell was that?”

How would you feel if you would have purchased this game?

via NeoGAF

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14 Comments on Indie Game Ends Abruptly Because Devs Ran Out of Cash


On October 19, 2013 at 10:43 pm

Title is slightly misleading. The length of the game has nothing to do with all the complaints.

It’s because the game ends abruptly, as you say in the text of the article. Totally out of a sudden…no one would have seen that coming. That’s not even an ending. It’s just snipped and shipped.

CJ Miozzi

On October 19, 2013 at 10:44 pm

@Chris: Good call; changed the title to “Abruptly.” Thanks.


On October 19, 2013 at 11:42 pm

As sad as it sounds that was pretty much my reaction the first time I finished Mass Effect 3.

Unfortunately a lot of things are going to a may-get-finished-eventually model. I purchased an e-book on programming in March using an early access program. The book wasn’t done yet but I would receive ‘alpha’ type version of it through the process. It was supposed to be released at the start of April but when the date came it got pushed back to June. June came and it moved to August. August came and it’s was moved to November. I received an e-mail today that chapter 4 is now available……me thinks it won’t be release in November either.

I guess that’s the price that’s paid when a culture goes from a “I’ll wait until it’s done so I can have the best product possible’ attitude to a “I don’t care if it’s done just give it to me now’ attitude.


On October 20, 2013 at 7:00 am

still a better ending than Mass Effect 3

CJ Miozzi

On October 20, 2013 at 9:30 am

@Matchoo: I’m sorry to hear about your situation, but this game was not peddled as any kind of beta, pre-release, or anything that would suggest it was not “complete.” I chuckled at the ME3 comment.


On October 20, 2013 at 11:28 am

Yeah, this is a lot more overt – but I felt about the same way with the ending for Mass Effect 3. You’re playing, and suddenly, “what the hell?”

This sort of thing is completely unacceptable and this game’s reviews should reflect its incomplete state.


On October 20, 2013 at 1:27 pm

They should just change the title to Dark Matter – Episode 1. Works for HALF-LIFE.


On October 20, 2013 at 2:11 pm

Please stop trolling, Michael. It’s not working.


On October 20, 2013 at 2:27 pm

Trolling? You do realize that Half-Life 2 – Episode 2 abruptly ends in the middle of the story, right?


On October 20, 2013 at 2:40 pm

Sorry, but are you the same Michael that’s been posting kiss-ass comments on Beyond Two Souls articles and trying to claim The Wolf Among Us is a piece of crap because it’s being released in episodes? Because if you’re the same Michael then there’s no apology required as you’re blatantly a troll, regardless of whether this particular comment is true.

If that’s a different Michael then I apologise for coming to false conclusions and would suggest you use a different name or add your surname in future to avoid confusion with your braindead namesake.


On October 20, 2013 at 7:32 pm


I am not that Michael.


On October 21, 2013 at 12:22 am

@Michael – then I rescind my comment and apologise for the mistake.


On October 21, 2013 at 7:35 am

OMG are u seriously kidding with this ending ?


On October 21, 2013 at 10:28 am

@Michael Big difference with Half life 2. You knew it would end in the middle before you ever started playing. Dark matter was suppose to be a finished product. Big, big, big difference there, although with HL3 seemingly turning out as vapor ware, the distinction is slowly disappearing.