Ah thank you for the correction on the games not being on Steam anymore. I had not looked in a few days. I appreciate the correction.
I also agree that P&F were in the wrong using the name Star Control without your permission and that the timing definitely does look suspicious. Where I part ways with your thinking is in two places:
1. Yes, the games had been on GoG for years, but as I mentioned previously, with their permission. This is the part that I'm a bit lost on. Their contention (right or wrong) is that they own the rights to those games and therefore they cannot be sold on Steam without their permission regardless of whether or not they were previously sold for years on GoG.
Your post appears to me to be implicitly making the argument that you took the games down off of Steam by your choice, which implies that it IS your choice to make. This is essentially claiming ownership of the right to sell those games on Steam - to re-add them at a later time - at your own prerogative. Implicitly, you're basically making the argument that you own those games.
Would you not consider this as wrong as P&F using the phrase "Star Control" without your permission? (From P&F's point of view, their ownership of those games is as obvious as your ownership of the Star Control trademark is to you.)
2. Did not P&F correct their illegal use of your trademark by changing the language around their sequel?
I can certainly understand why you'd be furious about a trademark violation. But, A) why assume bad faith and B ) why not reach out to them, explain your grievance and ask them to make adjustments to their language and be more careful in the future? From an outsider's perspective, their single use of "Star Control" or the phrase "true sequel" just seems a bit...insufficiently damning...for me to assume pure malicious intent. (At least at that time and from what I have seen from publicly available information. I can't speak to their motives now but it wouldn't surprise me if, like you, they were a bit more interested in getting their proverbial pound of flesh than they were before.)
To me looking at that, timing aside - which honestly might be considered a good thing if the language was adjusted and tightened up (a sequel AND an alternative universe reboot? WOWSERS sign me up! <---possible typical fan response. I highly doubt it would be an "either/or" thing where Star Control fans would buy one game but not the other or vice versa. At least I know that I'd buy both.) - P&F's usage of of your trademark looked like just an honest mistake.
Now I know I don't have the full picture. I don't have all the communications back and forth between you and them. So maybe there's something there that makes you firmly believe bad intent and not just a more innocent f*** up. But that also means I have the advantage of some emotional distance from this thing. *I* haven't spent $7M or 4 years of my life making this thing after all. If I had, I would very likely be reacting much stronger.
But just from an outsider's perspective, the trademark infraction seemed relatively benign and something that could have been jointly worked towards fixing and correcting....at least relative to the damage the firestorm of back and forth since has caused. All just IMHO.
Please note that I'd be asking P&F questions in the other direction if they were around to ask. They aren't for the most part. You are. So please don't assume that I'm on their side. I have questions for both sides but your side is the only one around that I can directly ask the questions to and so I do.
And also that I respect that you are around to ask and are taking so much time answering. I don't always agree completely with your answers and I do kind of wish that maybe you could step back from this thing a bit and try a few more rounds of working things out, but I empathize with the position you are in and am casting no judgments.