It’s tough not to feel a sense of vindication. After being torn to shreds by every reviewer that gave it a shot (including this one), the execrable Afro Samurai 2: The Revenge of Kuma has been pulled from the Steam and Playstation 4 marketplaces. In an added move, refunds are automatically being added to the owner’s wallets. What is especially unique is that, at least on Playstation 4, the title has been completely stricken from owners’ libraries. The only sign that it ever existed on Playstation 4 is now the earned trophies list of ex-owners. Lamentably, because I never purchased the game and only suffered through the whole darn thing, I was excluded from the refund. (Thanks for asking!)
In an interview with CGMagazine, Steve Escalante, the General Manager of publisher Versus Evil, laid out precisely why this move occurred. “The game was a failure. We could not do, in good conscience, volume 2 and volume 3. So we’ve begun the process, it’s been a long process to figure it out because Sony has never really had to do this in this way, but we’re returning all the money. So across the board we’re putting out an apology saying ‘sorry about this.’”
He further added, “if you look at the reviews, it wasn’t that the game was broken or buggy, people just didn’t like it.” This statement I personally take umbrage with. While I noted that it did not infect my console with a specific infectious disease, there were major issues with dropped frames and unresponsive controls. Because it is all about me, darn it!
Anyhow, this is fantastic news for players who sunk the money into this title and a legitimate (and unexpected) show of good faith on the publisher’s part. Hopefully, this won’t the death knell of the Afro Samurai series. It would be a shame for it to go out on this note.