A short while before top-down shooter Hatred made it onto Steam, a press release was sent out stipulating that online store GOG would not stock the game. It was an unnecessary jab that was left unexplained, so we thought we’d contact the distributor to find out their side of the matter, lest a biased view be left untouched. While the person we talked to at GOG admitted to not knowing the finer details, the reason for the denial of service is a lot less controversial than anything surrounding Hatred:
I know it went through QA (quality assurance) like any other game. It was a normal internal process.
I didn’t even know it was rejected (like lots of other games we have to pass on every month).
We also received a comment on whether or not Hatred was singled out in this process as a hot topic:
I’m not aware of any high-profile management meetings regarding this game and people talking about the bad press it got because of the violence, so I can’t say there is any “special” treatment it got from us.
And that’s really all there is. While Hatred would like to leave the ambiguity open of the game being targeted, the plain reality is that it just isn’t a game GOG wants to stock, like any other project the store ultimately denies. Unlike Steam’s currently much more lenient system, GOG takes game curation into its own hands. Meanwhile though, the store does sell DRM-free copies of Postal and Postal 2, the titles usually most linked to the top-down shooter. In particular, the first entry of that older franchise resembles Hatred’s approach.
Regardless of GOG’s approval, Hatred has already sold plenty. While sales are slowly reaching their peak, the project may have sold between 30,000 and 40,000 units in one week, according to Steamspy. At €16.66 a pop, that’s likely more than lucrative enough for the studio’s first product.