It’s no secret that Cyan’s latest magnum opus Obduction has been beset with controversy since the Kickstarter ended. However, most of that has been due to development issues. Despite that, the game has been met with pretty positive reviews. However, the latest issue isn’t with the game itself. The problem we’re seeing now is with regards to the physical copy that backers have started to receive.

In the rewards section, anyone who pledged at least $75 was promised “an exclusive Obduction special boxed edition containing the game for Windows or MacOS”. What backers understandably expected was an actual box. What we got was little more than a jewel case with a flimsy cardboard slip cover. You can see my deconstructed copy in the image below. It wasn’t even sealed.


Discs, Paper, and Cardboard

If you are to take a peek into the comments section, you’d find the place in an uproar. Pretty much everyone who’s commented in the past couple weeks are not happy with what they received. Considering they expected a box and got a case with two discs, a single sheet, and a slip cover their anger is easy to understand. I’m not particularly happy about it myself, to be perfectly honest.

Apparently, the people at Cyan were taken aback and surprised by the backlash. After a long string of comments by pissed-off backers, the developers finally stuck their heads in and left a comment. They promised to release an update addressing these “concerns”, but that was a week ago. The last update was on April 11. Making backers who are angry wait this long is almost certainly a death knell for them from a PR perspective.


Here’s the thing. If backers were sent an actual box, even if it was a small one, things wouldn’t have blown up as much as they have. If Cyan didn’t promise a box for Obduction, but rather just a “physical copy”, things might have gone smoother, too. Hopefully, the upcoming update will help quell some of this fire. Unfortunately, Cyan has already lost the faith of a lot of fans.

Serena Nelson
Serena has been a gamer since an early age and was brought up with the classic adventure games by Sierra On-Line, LucasArts, and Infocom. She's been an active member on Kickstarter since early 2012 and has backed a large number of crowdfunded games, mostly adventures. You can also find her writing for Kickstart Ventures and
Serena Nelson


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Serena Nelson
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  • spideynut71

    LOL at idiots who pre-order boxsets…you got what you deserved. I got the same game you did, digitally downloaded for under $20, which is exactly what the game is worth.

    • The game itself is good. Don’t get me wrong. I’ve enjoyed playing it. However, contrary to what you might think, there are a lot of people who still want to have physical copies of their games. There’s a Facebook group that caters directly to this type of collector. Don’t call them “idiots” because this is their passion.

      • spideynut71

        I didn’t call them idiots because it’s “their passion” ; I called them idiots because they forked over $75 , sight unseen, for the promise of a disc and some fancy packaging. Like I said, they got what they deserved. People like that are the reason so many devs/publishers are in the habit of monetizing everything they can get away with…things that should be…used to be…free. And most games are released needing day-1 “patches” (typically just an attempt to prevent piracy) before they’re even playable, rendering the physical copies useless, as you’ll still need to download 10/20/30+ GB before you can play.