2K Games "was relentless" in securing multiplayer made it in despite being "literally a check box" feature. Online was "never a focus" and game mechanics "were raped" to fit in multiplayer.
Cory Davis is one unimpressed lead designer. The online side barely represented what Spec Ops was, he added, pointing out that no one plays it because it stinks.
"The multiplayer mode of Spec Ops: The Line was never a focus of the development, but the publisher was determined to have it anyway. It was literally a check box that the financial predictions said we needed, and 2K was relentless in making sure that it happened - even at the detriment of the overall project and the perception of the game," said Davis.
"It sheds a negative light on all of the meaningful things we did in the single-player experience. The multiplayer game's tone is entirely different, the game mechanics were raped to make it happen, and it was a waste of money."
It's dragging the whole game down he laments: "No-one is playing it, and I don't even feel like it's part of the overall package - it's another game rammed onto the disk like a cancerous growth, threatening to destroy the best things about the experience that the team at Yager put their heart and souls into creating."
Additional words on the matter include "tacked on", "low-quality", "bullsh*t" and "should not exist" - it "tossed out the creative pillars of the product", said Davis. Despite 2K's insistence on multiplayer he still respects the publisher.
"They took a hell of a lot of risk with the project that other publishers would not have had the balls to take," he noted.
"Maybe I'm an asshole, but I think there are plenty of COD games out there, and if you want one ... I'm sorry we didn't give you one, but I'm glad that some players went into it and realised that it's something more."
Yager's lead designer muses the silver lining: "Seeing gamers go into the experience hoping to have a fun, shooty bro-romp through a Middle Eastern environment ... killing soulless, villainous enemies who are difficult to relate to (and thus easy to pull the trigger on), and then slowly finding themselves falling down the rabbit hole into a darker, more contemplative, more surreal, and character-driven experience has been amazing for me."
Check outof Spec Ops: The Line which released on Xbox 360, PS3 and PC in late June.