When Half-Life 2 horror mod Faceless was pitched to Greenlight, the game was described as a free-to-play title. But now it's been voted into the hallowed realm of Steam, plans are afoot to give the Slenderman-inspired game a $9.99 price tag. What gives?
According to Faceless' creative director Adam Sklar, the suggestion to try to raise revenues from the game came from Valve, followed by a decision by the development team that the money could be used to improve the game. In an interview with Indie Statik he said that the success of other indie games, offered commercially, had prompted the change.
Although multiplayer options and bonus content will be part of the $9.99 package, a core part of the game will still be free. "We will be shipping out a free version of Faceless with the Hyde Street Station and Forest map, alongside the prologue as a single-player standalone build," he wrote on the game's ModDB blog. "These are the maps Faceless would have had, if it were to remain free, with the prologue as a bonus addition. We will be selling the full multiplayer and single-player experience of Faceless complete with all the maps and gamemodes, prologue and epilogue, the entire package on Steam for $9.99."
In the past year much of the core Faceless development team has changed. Sklar said that team members were volunteering their time on the hide-and-seek title. "Going commercial is the best possible way to ensure we make this game the best it can possibly be, and continue to update it after its release to ensure a massive replayability value and new content." He said that Faceless is "no longer a mod, we will not be using any assets from Valve and will be total-conversion."