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Fez developer won't fix corrupting patch for financial reasons

"Microsoft would charge us tens of thousands of dollars," claims Fish

Fez developer Polytron has said it will not fix a patch for its game because the costs are too high.

The patch corrupted save files on the Xbox Live Arcade game, but Polytron claims only a small percentage of players are affected and the costs imposed by Microsoft are too expensive.

"Microsoft would charge us tens of thousands of dollars to re-certify the game," write Polytron's Phil Fish on the company blog.

"And because as it turns out, the save file delete bug only happens to less than a percent of players. It's a shitty numbers game to be playing for sure, but as a small independent, paying so much money for patches makes NO SENSE AT ALL. especially when you consider the alternative. Had FEZ been released on steam instead of XBLA, the game would have been fixed two weeks after release, at no cost to us. And if there was an issue with that patch, we could have fixed that right away too," he added.

The current patch, which was recently pulled, fixes major issues with the game, according to Polytron.

"Microsoft gave us a choice: either pay a ton of money to re-certify the game and issue a new patch (which for all we know could introduce new issues, for which we'd need yet another costly patch), or simply put the patch back online. They looked into it, and the issue happens so rarely that they still consider the patch to be "good enough"," he added.

"It wasn't an easy decision, but in the end, paying such a large sum of money to jump through so many hoops just doesn't make any sense. We already owe Microsoft a LOT of money for the privilege of being on their platform.

"People often mistakenly believe that we got paid by Microsoft for being exclusive to their platform. Nothing could be further from the truth. WE pay THEM."

Fez has sold over 100,000 copies on Xbox Live Arcade.

Phil Fish is a divisive figure in the indie games circuit, having upset the Japanese development community with comments at the Game Developers Conference. He now refuses to speak with the press.

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Matt Martin avatar
Matt Martin: Matt Martin joined GamesIndustry in 2006 and was made editor of the site in 2008. With over ten years experience in journalism, he has written for multiple trade, consumer, contract and business-to-business publications in the games, retail and technology sectors.
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