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Dangen Entertainment Allegedly Robbing Indie Devs? (Update: Medium article with more allegations, Dangen responds)

fiendcode

Member
Oct 26, 2017
12,341
I can only hope for some karmic justice with Dangen's lawyers giving them a "prompt" response. Like maybe they hear back say next Wednesday. :)
 

rawhide

Member
Oct 28, 2017
2,443
I wouldn't be shocked if Nicalis is similarly incompetent but we simply haven't heard about it.

The big difference between the two companies is that Nicalis fell ass-backwards into some really successful games, whereas Dangen has yet to release anything even close to as popular as Cave Story, Isaac, etc so one could presume Nicalis is much better resourced and therefore better able to scare people out of talking.
 

fiendcode

Member
Oct 26, 2017
12,341
The stuff about Nicalis was largely terrible communication and ghosting, besides Tyrone's gross bigotry, but we haven't yet heard about financial shenanigans with them. As far as we know they pay their devs at least.
 

Dash Kappei

Member
Nov 1, 2017
2,055
Damn.

Devil Engine is awesome, I still need to buy the Switch version but I was waiting for Ignition... is it going to happen? Hopefully self-published or under someone else...


I wouldn't be shocked if Nicalis is similarly incompetent but we simply haven't heard about it.
Oh but we did my friend, we did
Try a Google Search and you’d be surprised how much shit we know
 

trashtabby

Member
Oct 25, 2017
990
The stuff about Nicalis was largely terrible communication and ghosting, besides Tyrone's gross bigotry, but we haven't yet heard about financial shenanigans with them. As far as we know they pay their devs at least.
Them ghosting developers, especially for such long lengths of time as they did, very likely in itself caused large financial shenanigans. On top of that Tyrone was incredibly abusive towards employees. There's apparently even more stories that didn't get out there about how terrible Nicalis/Tyrone is.

My point is more that it'd be better if this didn't turn into some competition of which is the worse company though. Because that's bound to downplay the terrible actions of one or the other.
 

Wamb0wneD

Member
Oct 26, 2017
16,527
Just so I’m clear on this:

Party A: Sexually harasses people they are in a position of power over. Fraudulently alters contracts and provides “oops, sorry” responses when caught. Commit tax fraud in their contractors’ names. Attempt to defraud them out of large portions of income by “forgetting” to pay it. Take 40% without providing the agreed upon services. Make major costly decisions with contracted IP which they have no legal authority to make. Gave away musicians’ work for free without notifying or reimbursing them. Pressured developers into unpaid work which was never even used. Made business agreements in writing on developers’ behalves without even notifying them. Were caught outright lying about nonexistent business contacts and offers. Created a satanic “standard” contract which attempted to steal all work an individual had done, would do, work done by others not even involved in the contract, and have them do another person’s full time job...for $500 a month. Claimed to be too busy to fulfill vital business obligations while streaming themselves drinking from a bar.

Party B: Says some swear words after months of abuse at the hands of what now amounts to a criminal conspiracy constructed around a consistent and constant pattern of manipulation and business fraud.

You: Why aren’t you guys thinking about Party A’s mental health? You’re all monsters!

How do you have the life understanding of a deer.
This pretty much, Such a weird take from that poster. But they did say they know someone involded personally so we shouldn't be surprised.
 

rawhide

Member
Oct 28, 2017
2,443
Oh but we did my friend, we did
Try a Google Search and you’d be surprised how much shit we know
There's no evidence of financial impropriety on the level of this Dangen shit, not even close. Again, no part of me doubts Nicalis is any less incompetent but nobody's leaked anything about any one of this games that's nearly as indictable as what was shown here, and it's probably because Nicalis can credibly force an NDA.
 

Nappael

Member
Oct 25, 2017
5,631
It's pretty easy to still get the text, but the real receipts are in the pictures. All I've got saved is this one




All the text is cached on Google, but here's a pastebin https://pastebin.com/Y1em02dr

Edit: The Google cache was taken down minutes after I grabbed the text.
 

Disclaimer

Member
Oct 25, 2017
6,765
It's pretty easy to still get the text, but the real receipts are in the pictures. All I've got saved is this one




All the text is cached on Google, but here's a pastebin https://pastebin.com/Y1em02dr

Edit: The Google cache was taken down minutes after I grabbed the text.
Some of the pictures are available in this translation of the article:

 

daegan

Member
Oct 27, 2017
866
like even if everyone agreed that that developer was being toxic (and I do believe they are, while it seems a lot of this thread doesn't agree) - when the head of your company is at bare minimum engaging in sexual harassment of outside partners, I don't think you get to say thing one about anyone else being toxic to you
 

OnionKnight

Member
Nov 23, 2019
8
Lordran
Did they really think getting the medium post pulled would prevent the info from spreading? First of all that's hilarious that they think they can censor something like this, but more importantly:



The fact that Ben Judd/Dangen had the article taken down just confirms that the emails are real.

Lol
 

speedpop

Member
Nov 2, 2017
52
Almost like a mini-Streisand effect.

Hopefully a more concrete statement comes back from Dangen Entertainment however crisis management doesn't seem to be their strong suit. It's gone from indie developers not being paid in time/at all, to sexual harassment communications and company-wide levels of incompetence and negligence.
 
Apr 14, 2018
3,219
They got money for lawyers but not devs

Edit:

I'm about halfway through this article and I'm screaming in horror at my television
 
Last edited:

Sirhc

Member
Oct 27, 2017
819
Holy shitballs that Medium article, what a clusterfuck. Reading Sinoc's conversations gives me life though, is there somewhere I can shoot money at them without enriching those Dangen fuckwits?
 

atbigelow

Member
Oct 29, 2017
152
Glad people were able to archive the post. Looked like some of the original tweets got removed as well.

Definitely don't let this thing die.
 

rawhide

Member
Oct 28, 2017
2,443
If nobody's willing to report on the accusations then them shutting the fuck up and acting like nothing happened might actually work.
 

sredgrin

Member
Oct 27, 2017
5,115
I'm sure it'll blow up this week. It might just be having trouble gaining traction because this is a pub who's games tend to be very small, with their most notable success (crosscode, Iconoclasts) being games they are 1 of like 4 credited publishers (so I imagine they just published them in specific regions or something).
 

apocat

Member
Oct 27, 2017
3,875
They got the damn article taken down? That's not a great look, and usually works about as well as pouring gasoline on a fire.
 

SMD

Member
Oct 28, 2017
4,493
If nobody's willing to report on the accusations then them shutting the fuck up and acting like nothing happened might actually work.
I think the issue here is that a lot of people who may have similar experiences will be waiting to see how this pans out - and if it's badly handled, it would encourage more people to come forward, at which point the damage would be huge to the company.

I would hope that at the very least indie devs made aware of this are making sure they're not going to be taken advantage of people like this going forward.
 

Skrams

Member
Nov 27, 2017
36
Edit: Straight up using other discords to character assassinate Sinoc is a bad time Dangen.
 
Last edited:

WarRock

Member
Oct 25, 2017
8,227
I'm sure it'll blow up this week. It might just be having trouble gaining traction because this is a pub who's games tend to be very small, with their most notable success (crosscode, Iconoclasts) being games they are 1 of like 4 credited publishers (so I imagine they just published them in specific regions or something).
This is addressed in the article. They only localized those games for Japan (Asia?).
 

FF Seraphim

Member
Oct 26, 2017
4,771
Tokyo
Did they really think getting the medium post pulled would prevent the info from spreading? First of all that's hilarious that they think they can censor something like this, but more importantly:



The fact that Ben Judd/Dangen had the article taken down just confirms that the emails are real.

Lol
Yep, this just cements that this is real. Welp not supporting these guys anymore.
 

Jakten

Member
Oct 25, 2017
386
Devil World, Toronto
I don't see how that statement is 'downplaying' anything, what's alleged here sounds even worse than the bad shit Nicalis and its president were doing.
The stuff about Nicalis was largely terrible communication and ghosting, besides Tyrone's gross bigotry, but we haven't yet heard about financial shenanigans with them. As far as we know they pay their devs at least.
Yeah, Well.

Personally I was not paid for months when I first started there and there were a number of late payments afterwards but I know many more instances. Mostly freelancers but devs too.

Also there was more than just ghosting, they purposely try to sabotage people and don't forget different types of physical abuse which were hinted at in the article; or giving people faulty info so they get lost and then try to abandon them in a foreign country or other convoluted crazy shit. Like he purposely tried to make me miss my flight home from Japan and he’s done it to others.

A significant portion of the worst of what N*cal*s has done was not published to protect people (because of the vindictiveness but also because they are legally bound), not to mention all of the people who weren't even contacted for the Kotaku article or refused to speak out of fear. It doubly sucks as well that some of the people screwed by N*cal*s went to Dangen after they were fucked over.

Needless to say N*cal*s has not changed since the article went up and is still messing people around. Though hopefully no one new.
 

Nappael

Member
Oct 25, 2017
5,631
It's fascinating to me that we are now also at the point of Dangen trying to silence evidence, and still not a single media outlet gives a shit about reporting it.

I shouldn't be surprised, gaming media is mostly toothless at the best of times, but I'm still disappointed.
 

fiendcode

Member
Oct 26, 2017
12,341
Yeah, Well.

Personally I was not paid for months when I first started there and there were a number of late payments afterwards but I know many more instances. Mostly freelancers but devs too.

Also there was more than just ghosting, they purposely try to sabotage people and don't forget different types of physical abuse which were hinted at in the article; or giving people faulty info so they get lost and then try to abandon them in a foreign country or other convoluted crazy shit. Like he purposely tried to make me miss my flight home from Japan and he’s done it to others.

A significant portion of the worst of what N*cal*s has done was not published to protect people (because of the vindictiveness but also because they are legally bound), not to mention all of the people who weren't even contacted for the Kotaku article or refused to speak out of fear. It doubly sucks as well that some of the people screwed by N*cal*s went to Dangen after they were fucked over.

Needless to say N*cal*s has not changed since the article went up and is still messing people around. Though hopefully no one new.
That's terrible to hear if not surprising. It was pretty clear Nicalis (Tyrone) was scum but it sounds like there's so much more that hasn't come out yet, I'm sorry you had to go through all of it.
 

Harlequin

Banned
Oct 27, 2017
1,614
It's fascinating to me that we are now also at the point of Dangen trying to silence evidence, and still not a single media outlet gives a shit about reporting it.

I shouldn't be surprised, gaming media is mostly toothless at the best of times, but I'm still disappointed.
To be fair, actual quality journalism takes time. It needs to be researched, people need to be interviewed, facts need to be checked, etc. (and a lot of this stuff unfolded over the weekend). If you're hoping for one of those rare cases of actually worthwhile, critical games journalism, you should have at least a little bit of patience. If another week or so passes and there's still nothing, then I'd start being worried.
 

Lord of Ostia

Member
Oct 27, 2017
16,023
Yeah, Well.

Personally I was not paid for months when I first started there and there were a number of late payments afterwards but I know many more instances. Mostly freelancers but devs too.

Also there was more than just ghosting, they purposely try to sabotage people and don't forget different types of physical abuse which were hinted at in the article; or giving people faulty info so they get lost and then try to abandon them in a foreign country or other convoluted crazy shit. Like he purposely tried to make me miss my flight home from Japan and he’s done it to others.

A significant portion of the worst of what N*cal*s has done was not published to protect people (because of the vindictiveness but also because they are legally bound), not to mention all of the people who weren't even contacted for the Kotaku article or refused to speak out of fear. It doubly sucks as well that some of the people screwed by N*cal*s went to Dangen after they were fucked over.

Needless to say N*cal*s has not changed since the article went up and is still messing people around. Though hopefully no one new.
Oof, yeah I wasn't aware of all that.
 

The Boat

Member
Oct 28, 2017
895
Yeah, Well.

Personally I was not paid for months when I first started there and there were a number of late payments afterwards but I know many more instances. Mostly freelancers but devs too.

Also there was more than just ghosting, they purposely try to sabotage people and don't forget different types of physical abuse which were hinted at in the article; or giving people faulty info so they get lost and then try to abandon them in a foreign country or other convoluted crazy shit. Like he purposely tried to make me miss my flight home from Japan and he’s done it to others.

A significant portion of the worst of what N*cal*s has done was not published to protect people (because of the vindictiveness but also because they are legally bound), not to mention all of the people who weren't even contacted for the Kotaku article or refused to speak out of fear. It doubly sucks as well that some of the people screwed by N*cal*s went to Dangen after they were fucked over.

Needless to say N*cal*s has not changed since the article went up and is still messing people around. Though hopefully no one new.
Fuck all these shitty people behind these publishers. Ugh, sorry you had to deal with that.
 

FenninRo

alt account
Banned
Nov 13, 2019
83
Some of the pictures are available in this translation of the article:

Good to see that they won't get away with this just being an English Internet thing, considering most of their clients are probably Japanese and would otherwise be oblivious to all of this.

I'm usually big on decorum and conducting oneself professionally, but if these allegations are true, Dangen seems to be maliciously incompetent and lazy. I can't fault that developer for behaving in the way they did after dealing with nonstop nonsense and having the publishing rights of their game held ransom without even being paid in a timely manner.