Jason Rohrer is no stranger to controversy. He made a splash when he debuted The Castle Doctrine, a pixel-art MMO built around players securing their houses while trying to break into other players’ homes to steal their belongings. Last week he made waves by posting this article explaining why sales are bad for developers and players. (Sales “screw your fans” because they’re the early adopters that paid more before the price dropped.) Now Rohrer is giving away money and prizes to celebrate the game’s January 29th release on Steam. A prize drawing wouldn’t normally be a big deal, but the rewards are themed to fit the paranoid world of The Castle Doctrine.
The Steal Real Money pre-launch contest offers cash payouts based on the amount of in-game cash players amass by 5PM on January 27th. As of the contest posting, $282 gathered in-game will convert to a dollar of real-world money when the deadline hits. Rohrer says he will pay out a maximum of $3000. Additional prizes in the contest include eight giclee-printed canvas paintings of in-game art, a Door Devil security system, $50 gift certificates to a gun store, and the telescoping billy club that played a key role in the inspiration for the game.
If you find it all a little unsettling, Jason Rohrer says the contest “matches the spirit of the game’s community.”