Probably not entirely voluntary.
Dolphin Barn Inc. is no longer on Steam, you can no longer purchase Domina or Corporate Life Simulator on the platform. Over the last four months, the developer of the hit gladiator management game has come under repeated fire for using Domina’s Steam news section as a platform to rant and whine about political issues including trans rights, masks, and screeds about “real men.”
The dev’s use of the game’s news section for unrelated political whining led to a wave of negative reviews from gamers who simply wanted the developer to focus on the important thing; developing the game and not acting like a mentally unhinged child. The first time this happened, Valve actually stepped in and labeled the review bombing as off-topic, not removing the reviews themselves but preventing them from counting toward the game’s score.
In exactly the fashion you’d expect from a guy who waxes poetic about “soft men,” the developer’s thin skin toward criticism over the last few months inevitably led to him butting heads with Valve. Early in August, he threatened to cease development of the game unless Valve allowed him carte blanche approval to abuse his moderation and silence critics. Valve moderators had overturned many of his abusive attempts to moderate negative reviews, while the developer has been given free access to ban users from the discussion forums which he has made extensive use of, and last month the developer himself received a week-long community ban from his own forums for abusive conduct, with a warning that further infractions would put his games in jeopardy of being banned from the Steam platform.
One thing we noted at this point was that Valve stopped giving him the benefit of the doubt across the board. Following more than 400 negative reviews over the dev’s second tantrum, Valve turned a blind eye to the commotion and refused to label the string of reviews as off-topic. It’s been pretty quiet in the last couple of weeks, before this week a video on the YouTube channel Jim Sterling sparked the flame again.
As a result of the backlash from a third tantrum including over 200 users pleading with the developer via negative Steam reviews to stop using the news board for his hissy fits, all of Dolphin Barn’s games and DLC have been pulled from sale. The store page says they were retired by the developer, but given the developer’s tenuous relationship with Valve that retirement may not have been entirely voluntary.
If you’re expecting Domina to show up on Epic Games Store, don’t. The developer has already stated that they probably won’t be welcome as he’s been banned from Bandcamp, which Epic owns. How does one get banned from Bandcamp? Good question. The developer is also not welcome on Twitter, owing to more than one account ban, and refuses to put his games on Itch.io on account of being a fragile snowflake prone to pitching tantrums. This also includes Corporate Lifestyle Simulator.
One final note to the dev;