Back in May, we reported on an interesting demo of a fan-made open-world Superman game. The Superman-style flying experience was created in Unreal Engine 5, available for download on itch.io, and provided for free by creator Tyson Butler-Boschma. However, one Steam user took advantage of this by uploading it to Steam and pretending to be his own game for £9.29 for a demo.
Despite numerous complaints and reports, Steam still allows the sale of Hero City Superman Edition on its storefront. Additionally, publisher Hero Game Studios Butler-Boschma is suffering a copyright strike and jeopardizing his YouTube channel.
According to Insider Gaming, Butler-Boschma filed a DMCA takedown on November 7, but has yet to hear back from Steam. Meanwhile, Hero Game Studios took the opportunity to harass the original developer, accusing it of copyright infringement on YouTube.
The team that stole my free superman demo and are selling it on Steam, are now copyright claiming my content on @YouTube as well…
They are straight up attacking and harassing me at this point and I don’t feel safe providing my personal information for a counter claim… pic.twitter.com/dqd0oHjul4
— Tyson Butler-Boschma (@TJATOMICA) November 14, 2022
For its part, Hero Game Studios has almost no online presence. It began tweeting photos of the Butler-Bosma race on Sept. 27, but has not shared anything since. While Butler-Boschma’s videos are copyrighted, they are not uploaded on their own YouTube channel. It’s also worth noting that the person who created these accounts misspelled the company name on both Twitter and his personal website.
According to Insider Gaming, the “studio” claims that Butler-Boschma once worked on it and is now trying to “keep it all to himself.” However, there is little evidence that Butler-Boschma shared the project online long before Hero Game Studios appears to have appeared online. What’s more, the developer allows you to download the demo for free, while the company charges a fee.
Whether the increased publicity encourages Valve to take action remains to be seen, but it once again raises questions about Steam’s content moderation of indie games shared on the platform. So far, Butler-Boschma has been waiting a week for Steam’s inaction to allow Hero Game Studios to abuse him through YouTube’s copyright claim system.
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