CORRECTION: Delisted games are typically still available to download and play if the user has already purchased them. Apologies that our original article implied otherwise, this was in error.
Frogwares today announce the news that many of their games are being delisted — they're not sure why, and they're not happy.
They give a list of those games which they claim Focus Home have had delisted, which includes The Testament of Sherlock Holmes and Magrunner: Dark Pulse for both Xbox 360 and PS3, with Sherlock Holmes versus Jack the Ripper also apparently being taken down on Xbox 360. Frogwares claims that Sherlock Holmes: Crimes & Punishments will be taken down from Xbox One, Xbox 360, Steam, PS4, and PS3 on September 29th.
Frogwares address their letter "to everyone who is interested in the video game industry, and wants to take a look at what’s happening behind the curtain." "We make detective games because it’s our passion," they say, "But today, that is under threat. Some of our games are being removed from Sony’s and Microsoft’s storefronts, and even maybe from Steam". Their letter goes on.
Why? Because Focus Home Interactive, the licensee (or “publisher”) that was in charge of commercializing these games on these platforms, refuses to transfer the title IDs to us, the creators and IP owners of those titles, even though our Publishing and Distribution Agreement has expired. "The decision of Focus Home left us voiceless", says Frogwares. "We are certainly not going to give up, and will pursue this issue through the appropriate channels. We have always been an independent studio...This new policy from Focus Home towards former contracted developers will land a serious blow to our studio, threatening our future games and the people who develop them." Frogwares end their letter with an appeal to "those parties that can help us and have influence over the situation", asking them to get in contact.
Because, according to their official statement, sent to us only last week, “Focus has put in place a policy in accordance with which they will not transfer any title – the content ID or title ID – belonging to any developer which has removed all of their games from the Focus catalog”.
A policy that is not in any of our previous or existing contracts with Focus and that has never been applied to us in the past.