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Account Termination with Google Play

I was hoping to get some advice from other developers on how to proceed. Last Friday before the weekend my Android Developer account was terminated without any prior warning or reason given. I had only set up the account the day before it was terminated on that Thursday.alt text Like the email mentions: (""as outlined in previous emails to the registered email address(es) of the Publisher accounts(s)"") but since my account was made just the day prior I'd never received an email from Google Play Support (I have received the payment confirmation for the 25$ cost to register though)

So within a day I have to assume I accidentally did something that would warrant termination without a warning (warnings and reasoning should be provided according to Google Play's policies https://play.google.com/about/enforcement/enforcement-process/ except in the event of serious violations)

Since I wasn't given a reason I'm going to have to assume that the reason falls (""under such as malware, fraud, and apps that may cause user or device harm"")

I've got a few assumptions:

  1. I was following the tutorial here: https://docs.unrealengine.com/en-us/Platforms/Android/DistributionSigning and I followed it to the letter- Could the issue be that my keystore data has info like 'MyGame' and 'MyCompany' (I was having trouble getting it to work so I figured I'd try and follow the tutorial to the letter.)

  2. I had not changed the default icons away from the standard ue4 icons- Could the google play store bots have picked up on that and flagged me for fraud or trying to impersonate epic games and using their trademarks? So in this scenario if a developer accidentally forgot to change an icon and it got flagged then their account would be permanently terminated?

  3. The packaged version of my game was in 4 separate files: An APK, an OBB, and 2 batch files. I submitted the APK file to the developer console because that's what it asked for- I thought it was odd that it wanted the file that was only 27mb when the .obb file is 147mb- My game is larger than 27mb-- Did such a small file look fraudulent somehow?

  4. Reading the email: It mentions 'associated' accounts- But this is my first developer account that I (or anybody I even know) has ever made. Could have have been falsely picked up by the system as having an association with another account?

From the looks of it I've been slapped with a life-time ban from the Google Play store- Has anyone else dealt with similar issues? Is this normal? From the sound of it the appeals process has a low success rate and may likely get slapped by a bot. If you've dealt with this issue and got past it- What was your solution?

Sorry about bringing up issues with an unrelated service to the UE4 AnswerHub- I figured that this would be relevant to other developers though.

I'd really appreciate some advice here like I said- This seems like an extreme punishment for me setting up so I could see if the play store would kick back my game to me. I've got a working version for Android and figured the next step would be to see if the play store could push the game back to me for testing since I wasn't familiar with the store (Not opening to public of course) - Although I guess this slows if not halts any sort of public beta plans for me on Android.

Product Version: UE 4.21
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asked Feb 05 '19 at 01:44 AM in Packaging & Deployment

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War_and_Donuts
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avatar image War_and_Donuts Feb 05 '19 at 01:47 AM

Oh- I should mention that I've held off on submitting my appeal today but I'd like to do it soon. I didn't want to do it when emotions were high (I was shocked this morning) and figured I'd need a clear head. The form makes it sound like I'll only have one chance to submit an appeal so I'd really like to try and write the best one I can. - Although it's frustrating that I don't even know what to appeal exactly since no reason was given- I'll have to take shots in the dark.

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