With the recent release of planet-colonization sim Planetbase, combined with four swift patches to it, we've seen another example of the fine line between a bug and a feature. After its release on October 15th, it quickly climbed to become a best seller on Steam with SteamSpy reporting 80,419 owners at the time of writing. Social media, Kickstarter, and the their ilk has made it easier than ever for fans to voice their ire and pleasure directly to publishers. For some games, like Planetbase, patches are rolled out to change how the AI of the game sets up priorities, but other companies have stuck with their original vision, refusing to respond to customer demands.
This reflects one of the ongoing challenges with modern game development – the audience is essentially part of the process now. In an interview with Martiño Figueroa, responsible for the design and programing of the game, from Madruga Works, the team behind Planetbase, said that the Reddit community that grew up around their company was without any particular planning on their part – “It just happened.”