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Only Up Dev Removes Popular Game From Steam Due to Stress

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Developer SCKR Games has removed Only Up from Steam, citing “stress” as a driving factor behind the decision.

According to PCGamesN, Only Up is no longer available for purchase on Steam. Taking a look at the page, I can confirm that’s definitely the case. While that generally means those who already own the game will be able to continue playing it, new users won’t be able to buy it.

In a statement, the developer said, “I’m a solo developer and this game is my first experience in game dev, a game I did for creativity, to test myself, and where I made a lot of mistakes. The game has kept me under a lot of stress all these months. Now I want to put the game behind me. And yes, the game won’t be available in the Steam store soon, that’s what I decided myself.”

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After releasing on May 24, Only Up proven a hit with streamers on both YouTube and Twitch, due in large part to its notable difficulty. However, the game has also been plagued by issues and controversies, including a temporary removal from Steam due to potential copyright violations and promotion of non-fungible tokens. Still, at the time of writing, Only Up has nearly 13,000 reviews, which are categorized on Steam as “Mostly Positive.”

Although Only Up is no longer available on Steam, SCKR Games is planning to start work on a new project, currently titled Kith, after taking some time to grow and learn as a developer. Details on the game are scarce, but the developer described it as having an emphasis on cinematography.

The story of Only Up feels like a particularly odd one, as the game’s massive popularity resulted in increased scrutiny that, for a relatively new indie developer, must have been extremely hard to deal with. I have a lot of sympathy for SCKR Games, and I hope they’re able to find the “peace and healing” mentioned in their statement.

About the author

Liam Nolan
Liam Nolan is the Managing Editor of The Escapist. After getting his Master of Arts in English in 2016, he began writing about comics, television, movies, and video games, with his work appearing at such outlets as, CBR, and The Mary Sue. When he's not writing on pop culture, you can find Liam working on his creative projects or traveling. He's been with The Escapist since 2023. You can follow him on Twitter @LD_Nolan or on Bluesky