Ironmace’s dungeon-crawling PvPvE game, Dark and Darker, has recently been the subject of controversy following a DMCA takedown notice from Nexon, one of the largest video game companies in South Korea. The takedown has resulted in the removal of Dark and Darker from Steam, leaving its community of players and fans in confusion and uncertainty about the future of the game.
The DMCA takedown notice was apparently a response to allegations that Ironmace, the developer behind Dark and Darker, may have been in possession of stolen code and assets. These allegations were fueled by the fact that almost half of Ironmace’s 20-person team are former Nexon employees. However, Ironmace has denied any wrongdoing and claimed that a search of its offices by Korean officials was a “quick process” that yielded nothing incriminating.
Despite these claims, the DMCA takedown notice from Nexon was enough to prompt the removal of Dark and Darker from Steam, which had been scheduled to have another public playtest period from April 14 to April 19, 2023. The game’s Steam page has been completely removed, and searching for it will simply redirect users to the Steam home page.
In response to the DMCA takedown, Ironmace posted a statement on the Dark and Darker Discord (which was then shared on Reddit) stating that the company is currently working with its legal team to address the issue in the best manner possible. The statement also urged caution in making statements about the situation so as not to jeopardize Ironmace’s position.
The future of Dark and Darker remains uncertain. Although its community message board still appears to be active, many fans are confused by the sudden removal of the game from Steam. Ironmace has promised to do all that is possible for its fans and to get the game back up as quickly as possible, but it remains to be seen what the outcome of the DMCA takedown will be.