I’d hoped the last blog would be the end of this matter but...I realized the time has come for further action. As I have mentioned before in past blogs, there is a group of anti fans that has constantly maligned my name, and that of my company in a manner that goes far, far beyond customer concerns and criticism. Although some of these people began their hate campaign out of dissatisfaction with the way the company handled Mystic Destinies: Echoes, this group grew to include spreading rumors, lies, personal attacks and repeated harassment towards me over the past two years.
It has devolved from unhappiness about the way the game’s development was handled up till now, all the way into accusations of me being a thief, that I have engaged in illegal activities, that I brainwash people, that I did not pay my employees, that I emotionally abused them…the lies have all been spread in an attempt to destroy me and my business. The group of antis claims I have committed so much wrongdoing, going as far as to imply our fans are sheep and that I'm a cult leader…
Which is insane to me because the mistakes I've made have mainly been due to me being a newbie game developer, and I rarely have the time to communicate with anyone outside of these blogs. But they have even delved into my personal life. For example, they have spread lies that my personal expenses are uses of their crowdfunding money that I’m allegedly stealing (though it’s not their business, I have other income sources outside of ADS as indie game dev isn’t exactly profitable).
All of these things they are stating are being both implied and stated as true facts, but U.S. law states that facts have to be able to be proven in a court of law, otherwise they are simply defamation of character.
An artist we worked with for a couple of months has even allied with them, making claims that I emotionally abused her, did not pay her, and generally victimizing herself when our relationship had never gone beyond professional in those brief months. We parted on amicable terms after she had a health scare, and I believe that anyone could see how supportive we all were of her during her health difficulties (as anyone could see from past tweets).
So, I was shocked (and sad) when many months later she saw an opportunity to join these people and gain, what I have to guess is attention for her artwork through sympathy. But we only ever spoke through group work chats and emails, so if her allegations were true, I am certain that she will have the proof to back it up in court. Yes, I am saying I am 100% being falsely accused, and it's beyond frustrating that people believe someone at their word just because they're pointing a finger at someone. But it's even more frustrating to me because attention-seeking actions like this harms people's belief of real victims out there.
Unfortunately, many people have been swayed by these people because they possess both dedication to their crusade of personal vengeance against me and a cult-like mentality. They come in groups to spread their falsehoods to ADS fans, while supporting each other while sprinkling in a small amount of truth about my past mistakes with managing Mystic Destinies: Echoes game development (those I've already admitted on these blogs) to make their lies look real.
They do this on every single social media post I create, and even on my personal ones. They go across the Internet even to other sites to do this, in a campaign to end my company, gain personal attention, satisfy their personal vengeance on me. I believe the reasoning behind their reactions is simple: they hate me out of personal distaste for the way I've handled things, for game delays, and they've taken that hatred to the point of obsession, and are now trying to destroy me and ADS.
This group of antis continue to make claims against me, with me being unable to clarify what is truth and what are lies, just because people tend to believe the majority over one person. Much like a cult, they come to our social media and try to bend other fans to ally with their cause and align to their mind set. It is in this way they have bullied me, my company, and ADS fans for far too long. And so many people have sadly listened to them, judging me as "guilty" without even talking to me once, or doing any research whatsoever.
But isn't it supposed to be “innocent until proven guilty”?
I realized recently I let this go on far too long. It was probably at the point that I saw someone accuse me of brainwashing people. I have let all of this happen for the past two years. This group of people claim many things about me. But they are not God, nor are they a judge or jury. I believe every one of the accused deserves a trial before being judged, and the burden of proof is on the accuser.
That is why, to clear my name of the lies and separate fact from fiction for the public, I have decided to take legal action. I would like the chance to have them state their accusations in a U.S. court of law. Even if I had truly done the things they believe I have (I promise you other than what has been stated by myself, I have not) it still should be handled in a civil way, not through harassment, bullying, aggression and hate. They claim that I have done so many illegal things, but have never sought legal action to prove it. To me, shows that their intent is just to spread harmful lies for their own sense of revenge, not actually gain any true justice.
But, I want to prove myself innocent so that there is no question as to my integrity. It’s not to them that I want to prove this, but to others who may be confused by their libel. They will have the opportunity to prove everything they have said about me in a neutral judicial setting. If they cannot, they will have to retract their untrue statements or face penalties. Some of them claim they want justice…Well, is that not what court is for? They will be able to bring their thoughts and positions there and prove it. I have never been inclined to get into meaningless online arguments with them, so I cannot imagine a fairer, more civil way to settle this longstanding situation.
I will be motioning a court of law to sort out the truth from the lies and clear my name of false accusations, as well as finally stop this harassment and smear campaign. It's not going to be an easy road to walk, but I can't write of things like justice, love or strength and just sit quietly by while this kind of hate and bullying happens anymore.
I have identified many individuals involved, both international and U.S., and am in the process of pursuing the proper legal action so that we can settle their accusations in a civilized way. I would ask that if you cannot personally prove something someone is telling you, to not spread it further. In the meantime, I will continue to block people who are part of this group as I do not believe I deserve to be harassed, and neither do fans. Whatever the end result of this path is, I'll continue to keep fans updated on all things relating to ADS as I continue to fulfill my obligations.
And for those who have continued to support me in the face of these claims, and those who have continued to wait patiently...Thank you. It’s you who I’m working for.