TinyBuild Games, the indie developer behind games like SpeedRunners and Party Hard, has said more that 450,000 of their games have been sold without any compensation for their developers. According to them, the sales happened on G2A, which is a digital distribution site for games.
TinyBuild said the sales of the games came from the resale of thousands of game keys that were bought on TinyBuild’s own store. Those keys were then sold on G2A. That process in and of itself is perfectly normal and fine. However, TinyBuild says they got a substantial number of chargebacks because the purchases on their store were made using stolen credit cards. When TinyBuild brought this subject to G2A’s attention, the company declined to help get to the bottom of the matter unless TinyBuild agreed to a partnership with them.
An email sent by Alex Nichiporchik of TinyBuild to the press alleges that G2A responded to their requests with information by saying, “…The issue you have pointed to is related to keys you have already sold. They are your partners that have sold the keys on G2A, which they purchased directly from you… I can tell you that no compensation will be given. If you suspect that these codes where all chargebacks aka fraud/stolen credit card purchases I would be happy to look into that however I will say this requires TinyBuild to want to work with G2A.”
If all of this is true, then TinyBuild doesn’t really have many options. In his email, Nichiporchik said, “There’s no real way to know which keys leaked or not, and deactivating full batches of game keys would make a ton of fans angry, be it keys bought from official sellers or not.”
I’ve contacted G2A for comment. Shortly after I received the email from Nichiporchik, TinyBuild.com suffered a DDOS attack. It’s hard to say whether that was just a coincidence.