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Reader Comments (59)

Posted: Sep 27th 2011 8:47AM dudes said

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Is the picture a hint of DCUO's future? :O

Posted: Sep 27th 2011 9:04AM Tanek said

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Posted: Sep 27th 2011 9:24AM dudes said

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@Tanek

Holy Freetoplay, Batman!
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Posted: Sep 27th 2011 10:27AM Furdinand said

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@dudes A wild Slowpoke appears!
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Posted: Sep 27th 2011 9:05AM Skyydragonn said

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I've seen our local nebraska furniture mart still selling copies of the original APB at $39.99 despite me informing them several times that they're effectively selling a useless box as that game no longer exists. Given a lot of companies return policies on video games I can't believe they leave them on the shelves even after being told the game has been taken offline. (shutdown) Samething for tabula Rasa in a local discount store. I've told them they're selling a product that cannot be used.

Posted: Sep 27th 2011 9:24AM SkyStreak said

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If the game is going 'freemium' and the publisher will honor the retail codes, they can sell retail boxes to their hearts content, but if the game is totally cancelled (a la Tabula Rasa or Dungeon Runners), it should be pulled from shelves.

In addition, if their return policy doesn't take cancelled games into account that they might not have been aware of, then they should honor it anyway.

If not, they should be reported to the state Attorney General.

Posted: Sep 27th 2011 9:25AM Fabius Bile said

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uninformed customers always get what they deserve, no more no less

Posted: Sep 27th 2011 9:39AM Mikx said

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Hellgate? I saw a box for that months after it completely closed. I think League of Legends boxes that are lying around are pretty bad, even though they do have some value what they mostly do is take advantage of low information consumers.

Posted: Sep 27th 2011 10:02AM Eamil said

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@Mikx

The LoL boxes get you the same stuff now that they did on release (which is not a bad deal at all for the price), and get word of the game's existence to people who might not have noticed it otherwise. I don't really see a downside to that one.
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Posted: Sep 27th 2011 11:35AM Mikx said

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@Eamil

yes, but LoL is now free to play, at one time you actually had to buy the game. There is still content in the box, (in particular, there was a dirt cheap sale on the collectors edition recently) but should have a warning sticker or something on it.
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Posted: Sep 27th 2011 9:49AM Dukeun said

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No, I like having my box and it makes me think that I am spending my $40 - $80 on something more then a cd-key. If they get rid of box's they should lower the price on keys.

Posted: Sep 27th 2011 10:28AM Superjudge said

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@Dukeun

But you're really not paying for the box, you're paying for the developer's time creating and maintaining the game and the publishers time distributing it. The packaging and computer media costs are really negligible. The intellectual property is what is really valuable there. Even if there is not physical packaging for digital distribution there is still the matter of bandwidth costs to get the game to you.

Don't get me wrong, I like to have something to hold for my $50 too (although I like not having the clutter) but if you paid that much for a concert all you'd physically have for that are a couple of ticket stubs and maybe some hearing loss depending on who was playing. In the end you're paying for the experience.
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Posted: Sep 27th 2011 10:13AM Superjudge said

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Two words apply here (in the United States anyway), Caveat emptor.

In most locations in the U.S., retailers of any product (other than housing) are under no legal requirement to provide any refund or exchange. Many of them will but that is simply because they do not wish to damage their public image and those refunds often come in the form of store credit only. In the end, it is up to the consumer to inform him/herself about the products they wish to purchase.

Posted: Sep 27th 2011 11:12AM Caerus said

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@Superjudge

While you're absolutely correct, I feel like this is a special - maybe unique - case that eventually will need to be addressed by our legal system in some form. Especially in the case of TR/RTW's APB, I can't think of any other product that a customer can buy which literally, in every way, in completely unusable. At. All. There's no "you should have known you were only getting X in the box" here; it's a totally nonfunctioning product and that amounts to at the very least false advertising.

From Wikipedia on False Advertising in the US,

"What is illegal is the potential to deceive, which is interpreted to occur when consumers see the advertising to be stating to them, explicitly or implicitly, a claim that they may not realize is false and material."

I see Wal-Mart advertising the sale of TA for 5 dollars, and the box explicitly tells me things I can do, and I can't do *any* of them. That is absolutely illegal and stores definitely have an onus to make sure the products they are hawking actually do something close to what they say they do,or they are making a profit on false statements.

Also, @ the people earlier in the comments, to say that big chains don't have the resources to check if these games are still running is absolutely absurd. I could accept the reasoning that a mom-and-pop general store wouldn't have the time to do something like that, but any large chain is going to have a quality control department, and this falls clearly in their domain. It would take one person at most 2 hours to check the status of every online game stocked at Wal-Mart - hell, just go to the Wikipedia page once a month and call it good. Not difficult at all.
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Posted: Sep 27th 2011 12:02PM KDolo said

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@Caerus

But WalMart isn't advertising those things on the box. WalMart is just selling it.
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Posted: Sep 27th 2011 10:14AM (Unverified) said

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they need to pull used one that req an online pass of some sort,always sucks getting a game home from renting or buying used ad find out you cant go online,or get online but not past a certai lvl cause you dont have a code.

Posted: Sep 27th 2011 10:21AM Amusednow said

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Full price? no just a blatant ripoff then, but drop the price to move it. Nothing wrong with having a physical backup of a MMO around that has gone f2p instead of reinstalling it on a d/l always.

Posted: Sep 27th 2011 10:32AM Furdinand said

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There is some unique stuff in the DCUO collectors' edition, but people should probably wait until they are on clearance.

Posted: Sep 27th 2011 11:06AM hami83 said

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Selling a game that's closed is basically selling a kids toy that's been recalled.

It should be illegal and impose harsh fines since you basically selling someone a product that doesn't work and it isn't advertised that it doesn't work.

Posted: Sep 27th 2011 11:08AM pcgneurotic said

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Retailers *do* know - at least, the specialist software and videogame guys do. When I worked at Electronics Boutique in the UK back in 1997, everyone from store management all the way up to head office knew very well what was going on - if for no other reason that that we had an internal, company magazine that told us all this kind of stuff.

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