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Calaris Exposé: The Epitome of Unprofessionalism

posted 26 Nov 2010, 13:26 by Knuckles Sonic8   [ updated 10 Dec 2010, 12:53 ]
26th November 2010; By KnucklesSonic8

I am writing this blog entry to inform all of our readers (and potentially, fellow press associates) about a situation I was involved in not long ago. I don't think I've ever been so disgusted over the actions of a development team. More specifically, this is to make you aware of the sheer unprofessionalism of the Calaris team.

First I'd like to draw your attention to the rubbish behaviour exhibited towards Daan this past summer. On August 22nd, Daan alerted me to a comment that was posted on the Info Video for Warmen Tactics found on his YouTube channel. A user named 'onslaught50' posted: "This NintenDaanNC or whatever is [a] liar. I guess he is trying to protect some crappy games developed by himself."

Then on Daan's video review, the same user made the comment that Warmen Tactics was the "best WiiWare game", and said Daan's review was "crap". Then, he called Daan a "cheap liar", and said he was "writ[ing] lies for [a] few bucks". For some reason, he suggested that Daan was bribed to review the game and give it a bad score.

Of course I stepped in, and posted a few choice words for him on both videos. You can view these for yourself in the screenshots on the right. On the first video, you'll also notice a user named 'PirxCaptain' decided to attack gaming website Nintendo Life, saying they were misleading people away from a good game. And that set me off too. As I looked at both their subscriptions and favourites, I started to piece things together. It seemed as though they had created a network of YouTube accounts to try to put their game in a good light when, in fact, it didn't deserve to be. This whole ordeal made me think even less of Calaris.

Now you may be wondering why I'm bringing all this up a few months later in November. Two months ago, I reviewed Space Trek (one of their WiiWare titles) and it ended up receiving a score of 05/30. Prior to the review getting published however, we discussed the possibility of a review opportunity when the game first came out. Sebastian from Calaris offered us Paypal funds, but for some reason, he said "[they would] send $20 for the game". That first statement puzzled me, but as I read further down the email, he made the questionable comment that he would "send [me] some extra money if the review will be fair".

Does that not sound like bribery to you? In response, a portion of my email read this way: "As for the funds, that's mighty generous of you guys to offer $20, but you shouldn't feel obliged to send that much money. As a team, our site is dedicated to providing accurate, unbiased and fair reviews to our readers. This is in no way contingent upon the reimbursement that you are offering. I will be reviewing the game honestly and as such, there's no need to supply us with additional funds if the verdict so happens to be pleasing to you guys." In reply, he said: "We don't want to bribe you :0 we ask only for fair review." He ended up sending $20 even after I told him it wasn't necessary. Anyway, a couple weeks went by, and I sent him the link to the finished review. Unsurprisingly, he didn't send me a message back commenting on the outcome.

Two months went by and during the first week of November, I recieved an email from Paypal saying they were investigating a Paypal reversal. Apparently, Sebastian "asked his or her bank to reverse the payment for the... transaction". The first thing I did was examine details surrounding the case, then I proceeded to send him an email hoping to confront him about it. The email I sent highlighted that he was "cognizant of the fact that [he was] going to send [that] much money, even after I specifically stated that sending that much would not be necessary", and that his behaviour was very unprofessional. After sending off the 7-paragraph message, he replied with a one-liner message: "Just return stolen money stupid thief". Needless to say, I was rather taken aback that he went to that level. 

After realizing that there was no getting through to him, I did my best to resolve the situation on Paypal by providing any and all information. In the end, I won the case as Paypal was "unable to find evidence of unauthorized access to the buyer’s account". After it was finalized, I received an even more disturbing email in the form of a threat! "I can make you life unpleasant and I will. you are cheap lair and scumbag, so see you soon..." (Directly after the dots he inserted my full name.)

I deemed it as important to let others know about the disgraceful actions Calaris has been involved in. I can assure you we will never have anything to do with them again.