Slender: Source Dev Responds to ‘Rip-Off’ Accusations
It’s only been a day since the Half-Life 2 mod Slender: Source appeared as a shadowy figure in the distance. Not even complete yet, the mod has gotten quite a bit of attention, probably because of all the attention garnered by the terrific and terrifying Slender, a Unity engine game in beta created by Mark J. Hadley.
But as the Internet is wont to do, it already is judging the mod before it’s even available (and it won’t be until, realistically, around November). The founder of Slender: Source developer Ethereal Entertainment, Justin “Manio” Ross, took to a blog post to clear the air, noting that Hadley’s game had a huge impact on Ethereal, but that the developer is working on its own take on the Slenderman mythos.
“People have been concerned that we’re trying to cash in on the success of the indie horror title ‘Slender’ developed by Mark J. Hadley, but this is not the case,” Ross wrote. “We’re all huge fans of his game on the development team, and huge fans of the Slenderman mythos as well. Slender: Source (name subject to change) is purely an inspirational piece to show our love for Slender, and the urban legend around the creature. We apologize formally to Mark J Hadley, and want him to know that we’re not trying to undermine, or do anything negative on what was already presented with Slender.”
Ross went on to say that without Slender, Ethereal wouldn’t be working on a slenderman game at all. The developer’s take on the mythos (which got its genesis in a Something Awful forum thread and has been altered and expanded by several sources through stories, art and films online) also expands on what Hadley started, adding four-player cooperative play, more environments and what sound like some slightly different takes on the way the game will handle and the atmosphere it’ll provide.
Of course, while Slender has seen a lot of buzz, there’s largely not any “cashing in” to be done, despite what anonymous folks on the Internet might say. Hadley’s game lasts maybe 15 minutes for a playthrough, it’s still in beta, and it’s anything but complete (though it is a very strong horror offering, don’t get me wrong). It’s also free in its beta version. And Ethereal’s mod is nowhere near ready to play, so it seems pertinent to wait and see what it becomes before judging. Hadley’s game is not the first to make use of the slenderman concept, either, by the way.