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Video Game Developers Squat On Airbnb Rental; Also Accused Of Duping Kickstarter Investors

by Carlos E. Castañeda
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(L-R) Maksym Pashanin, Denys Pashanin (from Maksym Pashanin Kickstarter video)

(L-R) Maksym Pashanin, Denys Pashanin (from Maksym Pashanin Kickstarter video)

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(CBS SF) — Two brothers who have been squatting on an Airbnb rental in Palm Springs owned by a San Francisco woman are also being accused of duping video game investors on Kickstarter.

In May, Cory Tschogl rented her Palm Springs vacation condominium to a renter for more than a month and not only did the renter did not pay, he will not leave, she told Business Insider. On top of that, he has threatened to sue Tschogl.

“He threatened to sue me, saying his brother was there and got an ulcer to due to the tap water. He said he was legally occupying my domicile and he has rights,” Tschogl told Business Insider.

California law stipulates that once someone rents a property for 30 days, the person is a tenant on a month-to-month lease and evicting them is a costly, time-consuming process.

Tschogel said the renter went by the name of Maksym. Neighbors of the Palm Springs condo told KESQ-TV the tenants names are Maksym Pashanin and his brother, Denys Pashanin.

Maksym Pashanin is the name behind a Kickstarter funding campaign launched in 2013 for a video game called Confederate Express, with an estimated delivery date of June 2014.

After the $10,000 Kickstarter was funded nearly $40.000, the release date came and went with no product. Pashanin wrote that his company, Kilobite Inc., was undergoing a restructuring that delayed the game. Instead he offered backers another game called Knuckle Club being developed by Kilobite, also seeking funding on Kickstarter, this time for $25,000.

The Knuckle Club campaign has only had $881 pledged through Wednesday, along with a litany of negative comments from previous backers. Amid the hundreds of similar comments on the Confederate Express Kickstarter was one from Maksym Pashanin himself, appearing to acknowledge the squatting claims and saying he would “squat again.”

Pashanin comment

According to video game site Polygon, the Pashanin brothers have not returned any messsages asking for comment. One of the so-called ‘team members’ on the Confederate Express Kickstarter told Polygon he also has not heard from the brothers.

“I have had no real connection with the ‘team’ besides making one track for their game demo (and a few unreleased ones) that is up on the Kickstarter-page,” he wrote. “I have been waiting for months for an update on when I could start making more music for them, considering that they had officially put me on the Kickstarter page. I am still waiting (have been waiting for almost a year), but I don’t know what to think anymore. It all seems a bit fishy. But I could be pleasantly suprised in the end, or not. I hope it will go as planned!”

Maksym Pashanin told gaming website Cliqist that he has “made some bad decisions” but that the Confederate Express game will be released.

According to court records, Maksym Pashanin sued his San Francisco landlord in October 2012, demanding $10,000 for the “nuisance by ongoing construction in plaintiff’s backyard.” The case was later thrown out of court.

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