The Epic Game Store has become notorious for dropping piles of cash on publishers for exclusivity, forcing them to change up established release plans at the last minute. Ashen was an early casualty.
Ashen is an excellent open world hardcore action RPG, with a haunting art style and intriguing asynchronous multiplayer. As good as Ashen is, the confusion around the game’s launch, becoming one of the first games to get Epic Game Store exclusivity, really bit a chunk out of the game’s hype.
Ashen was previously listed not only as a Steam release, but also an Xbox Play Anywhere release for the Windows 10 Microsoft Store on PC. Players who picked up the game on Xbox were expecting to be able to carry their progress and purchase between Xbox and PC, but Ashen’s publisher, Annapurna Interactive, turned their back on its launch promises for that sweet Epic Games cash money.
Thankfully, developer Aurora 44 recently reiterated on Twitter that Ashen will still eventually emerge on Xbox Play Anywhere, and the Steam page is still live, with a “TBD” launch date, indicative that the deal with Epic Games is only a timed-deal.