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MSCHF's Tax Heaven 3000 aims to help US players filed their taxes, it just can't be done on Steam.

Justin Carter, Contributing Editor

March 23, 2023

2 Min Read
Splash art for Tax Heaven 3000 with Iris smiling at the camera.

As tax season in the United States wears on, a new game was about to release and help make the process easier...then, hours later, it was delisted on Steam. 

Tax Heaven 3000, from Chair Simulator's MSCHF, is a visual novel wherein players date the main character Iris, who also helps them with their taxes. While the game plays like an average dating game, its dual purpose as a tax filing system means players have to input their Social Security number into the game, in turn increasing Iris' love for them.

MSCHF planned to release the game on March 31, but the game has since been pulled from Valve's storefront. Speaking to Polygon, co-founder Daniel Greenberg said a reason for the game's delisting wasn't given. 

"[It] went through Steam's standard verification process, and was ready go live April 4th, but out of nowhere if was de-verified and removed from the platform without explanation yesterday," he explained. "That’s all we know.”

While it's pulled from Steam at time of writing, Tax Heaven 3000 will come to itch.io on March 31. It can also be purchased via MSCHF's website.

Tax Heaven 3000 is trying to get at something

MSCHF's newest title isn't the first game to be built off a seemingly silly premise (and then show commitment to the bit). But its intentions are clear. 

In Tax Heaven's product description, the developer noted how the US is infamous for making tax filing a paid, oft laborious process. Tax Heaven 3000 was made as an alternative against "predatory, parasitic bottlenecks that deliberately complicate the tax filing process in order to make it unnavigable by ordinary people."

Having players file their Social Security numbers into a specific game is likely a legal nightmare that would put Valve on the hook if its platform (or specific users) get hacked. 

User data and personal information get stolen frequently from various sites, so you could see how Valve would be gun shy about letting a game built on personal information release on its storefront. Even so, MSCHF has a point: filing taxes in the US are intentionally complicated, and something to ease that process would be greatly beneficial.

About the Author(s)

Justin Carter

Contributing Editor, GameDeveloper.com

A Kansas City, MO native, Justin Carter has written for numerous sites including IGN, Polygon, and SyFy Wire. In addition to Game Developer, his writing can be found at io9 over on Gizmodo. Don't ask him about how much gum he's had, because the answer will be more than he's willing to admit.

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