Barely Mad Studios introduced a month in the past that Undertaking Vehicles 2, among the finest racing sims ever, was being removed from Steam (opens in new tab) on September 21. I hope you have been in a position to seize it when you wished it, as a result of right this moment is the day and positive sufficient, it is gone.
There’s been no additional phrase from Barely Mad Studios in regards to the removing, however a discover on the Undertaking Vehicles 2 Steam page (opens in new tab) states that it’s not out there for buy. SteamDB (opens in new tab) carries an identical message: “On the request of the writer, this app has been retired. You could not be capable to purchase or get it.”
It is honest to say that “could not” on this case means “can’t.” You would possibly be capable to scrounge one up from a key reseller when you’re particularly keen and keen to roll the cube, however the Humble Retailer (which provided the sport by way of Steam keys) has additionally eliminated its Undertaking Vehicles 2 itemizing, and the Project Cars 2 website (opens in new tab) not presents buy choices both.
The explanation for the removing of Undertaking Vehicles 2 (and shortly, the unique as nicely) is easy, and one we have seen earlier than: Expiring licenses for vehicles and tracks. Merely put, builders and publishers pay for the best to make use of real-world merchandise of their video games—on this case, vehicles and tracks—with a purpose to improve “authenticity.” However these rights do not exist in perpetuity, and when the licensing deal expires, a alternative should be made: Renew or let it go. And if gross sales aren’t prone to justify the expense—which is all however actually going to be the case for area of interest, years-old driving sims—then the deal can be left to lapse.
In some instances these lapsed licenses could be labored round, corresponding to when Rockstar pulled licensed music from Grand Theft Auto 4 (opens in new tab) when it turned 10 years previous. However vehicles and tracks are mainly the entire of Undertaking Vehicles, so eradicating or remodeling licensed content material could be a Herculean activity, if it is even potential in any respect—not one thing that Barely Mad was apparently serious about bothering with.
The removal from Steam (opens in new tab) is comprehensible, but it surely nonetheless sucks—Undertaking Vehicles 2 is a extremely good racing sim—and it demonstrates the fragility of digital distribution: Individuals who personal the sport will proceed to have entry, however the absence of bodily media eliminates different avenues of buy. It additionally showcases the pitfalls of licensed content material. If Barely Mad had taken a Rockstar strategy to its vehicles, with goofy-named knockoffs just like the Massacro, the Zentorno, the Felon GT, and the Vigero ZX, Undertaking Vehicles 2 would possibly nonetheless be on sale; as an alternative, we bought 5 years of actual names (Undertaking Vehicles 2 launched on September 22, 2017) and now it is gone for good.
When you have any ideas about snagging the unique Project Cars (opens in new tab) earlier than it is delisted, you may wish to get a transfer on: It is slated for delisting on October 3.