In Friday the 13th, the survival horror game based on the classic horror film franchise, one player assumes the role of iconic serial killer Jason and must hunt down seven others playing as hapless camp counselors. However, he isn’t the only one capable of murder; camp counselors can kill one another as well using the various weapons they find. This has led some players to deliberately kill their teammates during online matches–an issue that has become so prevalent that publisher Gun Media will be removing the feature in a future patch.
The publisher announced the decision in a post on Reddit. “[T]he biggest thing we’ve heard from our community with the game are issues pertaining to rampant team-killing that has unfortunately been abused by players on all platforms,” the post begins. “While the mechanic’s intent is designed to promote life-or-death experiences into each and every game you play, the reality has turned into more of a Battle Royale scenario to a point our team feels a change needs to be made.”
Following the game’s next patch, “Public Games will no longer allow counselor team-killing through weapons use against other counselor players,” meaning shotguns, machetes, and other weapons that camp counselors can wield will no longer have any effect on their teammates. However, players can still kill one another by running them over with a car. “We decided on this as the alternative was abused during our beta where users would simply stand in front of the car, effectively blocking it from moving,” the publisher explains.
“Our team believes that the ability to hurt other counselors is something that this game should have as it adds tension and requires players to make tough calls,” Gun says. “However, we do not believe this should be a mechanic that is abused by players to the point where the vast majority of our current communications from fans are complaints of rampant/unwarranted team-killing/griefing/trolling.”
Still, while team-killing may be disappearing from public matches, it doesn’t appear to be the end of the mechanic entirely; it will still be allowed in private sessions for the time being, “with the hope of better options in the future.”
Despite its initial troubles, Friday the 13th has sold almost 2 million copies since its launch. A physical version is releasing for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One this October, on Friday the 13th. The physical copy will retail for $40 and includes a Bloody Jason skin as well as a free clothing pack for playable camp counselors. Recently, developer IllFonic released a patch for the Xbox One version that significantly improves the game’s performance and fixed a long list of bugs. A free single-player mode is also in development, though Gun Media hasn’t announced a release date.