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Reader Comments (26)

Posted: Dec 5th 2011 9:38AM b3n said

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When publishers and distributors make buying a game this difficult, it's easy to see why people pirate games.

Posted: Dec 5th 2011 9:55AM KvanCetre said

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@b3n
Skyrim and Witcher 2 were both heavily pirated, both available on Steam, Amazon (including download from Amazon) and dozens of other retailers. I think pirating is more about wanting something free.
Secondly, good luck pirating an mmo?
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Posted: Dec 5th 2011 10:11AM b3n said

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@KvanCetre

You seem to be implying that I want to pirate SWTOR. I'm sorry if I gave you that impression. I personally never pirate anything.

I'm not going to go explore the reasons for/against piracy here because it's all been said before. It's not just about "wanting something for free".

Incidentally I did pay for Witcher 2 and Skyrim. You should read this interview from last week on what the makers of the Witcher 2 think abotu piracy: http://www.pcgamer.com/2011/11/29/interview-cd-projekts-ceo-on-witcher-2-piracy-why-drms-still-not-worth-it/

Regarding SWTOR, I pre-ordered the standard retail edition months ago (with Amazon). I don't care about the Collector's Edition because I don't think any game is worth £130.
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Posted: Dec 5th 2011 10:28AM KvanCetre said

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@b3n
The only thing I can remember pirating was KOTOR2, because I was in college and wanted something free. There were probably others, but they clearly weren't memorable games (I think one was a first person shooter with psychic powers?)
I actually picked up Witcher 2 last week from Amazon for $15. Oddly, I don't even plan on playing it since TOR releases in ten days. I've got a few things to try to finish this week, including skyrim and possibly Deus Ex. Maybe toy around with Diablo 3 some more...
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Posted: Dec 5th 2011 10:50AM DarkWalker said

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@Lucidus
Lol, if there is ever a way to play TOR solo as if it was a KotOR 3, I'm most likely purchasing the game just to do it :)

I'm not really interested in TOR's MMO aspect; it seems to me like a re-hash of WoW's systems, but without some very important improvements in the WotLK/Cataclysm time frame - and MoP should be bringing WoW's game systems even more in line with what I want from a MMO. As a solo RPG, though, I expect it to be fairly good (even though the customization and choices will be watered down compared to recent Bioware RPGs).
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Posted: Dec 5th 2011 11:16AM DarkWalker said

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@b3n

I really agree. I think Steam and other digital retailers such as GOG are way better at countering piracy than any DRM system will ever be. With them, I can purchase any game I want in a matter of minutes, delivered to my computer through the Internet; there are no shipping costs, no need to drive to the store, no risk of the game being sold out, etc.

As long as the game is worth playing, any kind of DRM will be broken in time, and then the pirates will often make a better "product". Take Arkham City, for example; the official version (which I own) only comes with the CatWoman DLC, has a 5 installations limit, and whenever the SecuRom protection acts up it will either chew up the save game or tag it as a pirate copy and prevent the player from finishing the game; whereas the currently available pirate version comes with all DLC and, thanks to having removed the DRM, won't mistake running a mod with attempting to pirate the game and then proceed to chew your save game.

Also, when the game has multiple "exclusive" content from purchasing it from different vendors, often the only way to get them all is to pirate the game. The publisher is intentionally refusing to sell players the "complete" game, leaving them no choice except to get the pirate version if they want to get all the exclusives.

In the end, I think whenever the "pirate" version is actually better - as in, more features, less hassle - then piracy gets a field day. Paying for a product that is perceived as "inferior" is never a nice proposition.
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Posted: Dec 5th 2011 2:08PM pid said

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@DarkWalker

I agree on many things you say but have to disagree on some.

No shipping costs? On Amazon you don't necessarily pay shipping (depends on many things I'm not going to explain here) but you get a physical copy. Still, on Steam you pay often the same amount.

I can tell you even worse: Skyrim cost 49 EUR on steam and I pre-ordered it. Then I saw it on Amazon for 38 EUR (!) so I cancelled the digital-only copy from Steam and pre-ordered it from Amazon. I got the PHYSICAL copy on 14 november (versus release day 11 november). The physical copy contained a paper map (pretty useless, but still a gadget).

In the end the balance is this:
- 38 EUR instead of 49 (11 saved);
- physical copy (including paper map);
- 3 days later than digital;
- exactly the same after installation, I even had to register it through Steam under my very same account and get all patches/updates now.

I often like/dislike Steam/Amazon for various reasons, but sometimes it's nice to see how they play out each other :D

This time Amazon got the "like" and Steam the "dislike", but the opposite was true more than once!

The best thing is to follow many different channels and to take advantage when offers/challengers appear...
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Posted: Dec 5th 2011 2:30PM ed511df3 said

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@pid Physical copy means exactly nothing with PC games these days, unless that physical copy includes things other than a DVD, or has no copy protection and needs no patches that don't make you re-download 90% of the game.

I'm not sure why people are so set on holding physical discs in their hands nowadays when most of the time that content is completely unusable without some sort of internet access, either for day 0 patches, key registration, or other such annoyances.
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Posted: Dec 5th 2011 6:58PM ShivanSwordsman said

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@ed511df3

I think it's the innate fear of not having the physical media. With physical media, you can still jump on File Planet and the like and get patches should anything happen to Valve. However, with Valve, you're really just renting your games, just like Onlive and all those other services. Unless of course Valve ends up sending out crates of CDs of the games you buy, should anything happen.
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Posted: Dec 12th 2011 9:57AM S1CKLY said

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@KvanCetre

Pirating WoW was dead easy and from what I hear a lot of MMOs are easy to pirate.. usually you have to play on 'private' servers though.
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Posted: Dec 5th 2011 9:42AM (Unverified) said

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Dont care about the CE version. Got my pre-order with shopto. A lot quicker and a lot more reliable than GAME.

Posted: Dec 5th 2011 9:48AM freebase said

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Posted: Dec 5th 2011 9:52AM bobfish said

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I'd already pre-ordered my CE with Game, whilst they may not be the cheapest, if they say they'll have something, they will definitely have it. I've also always had my games delivered on launch day by them, something I can't say for some of the online retailers (I'm looking at you Play!).

Its also pretty common for Game to get exclusives, they are also something like 60% or more of the market share for games retails in the UK, giving them a lot of weight to throw around.

Posted: Dec 5th 2011 9:54AM Space Cobra said

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I am thinking GAME probably means to say they will have "physical" boxes on shelves and in-stock. Maybe they ordered extras. I can't see online outlets being affected by this, as they don't have stores or shelves. It just sounds like a PR-Advertising move to thump GAME's chest and brag/get customers in their stores.

As for the Wal-Mart thing, sorta expected. I never pre-order from Wal-Mart (and this seems to apply online, too. So it seems worse). Yeah, having Reid come out and say that is needed, but that's a given: Pre-orders won't need a physical copy if they downloaded the last Beta and I am sure that the e-mail announcing your pre-launch date will have a link for downloading because...well, you don't have your box yet! ;P ).

This is a problem at Wal-Mart's end, no doubt. Maybe an over-eager store employee(s) getting into the ordering system wound up diverting all copies for themselves? (Non-substantiated half-joke!)

Posted: Dec 5th 2011 9:58AM real65rcncom said

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Yeah, Walmart has a bad record of messing up orders of any kind. I guess that's to be expected when you move more stuff than anyone else in America at least.

I try to never order from there unless I simply can't find it anywhere else. Even Gameflop is better for pre-orders which they also mess up, but at least they actually know what the games are so they have a tad more expertise in figuring out how to get you the game.

Saw people eager to blame EA for this and laughed.

Posted: Dec 5th 2011 10:56AM DarkWalker said

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Last time I saw a store chain get an exclusivity deal to sell the CE edition of a game in a whole country was SC2's CE in Brazil. The store chain then proceeded to hike the price up to $275 for the CE (in the US, it was going for $100; more telling, the normal version of the game had the same price in both countries).

I hope this is not the case here, but usually the only reason to aim for exclusivity is to be able to hike the price without fearing competition. More profits for the store, more profits for the publisher, shafted consumers.

Posted: Dec 5th 2011 11:04AM SnarlingWolf said

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Never ever preorder a video game, especially not an MMO, you are just asking for trouble and disappointment.

Posted: Dec 5th 2011 12:26PM Buhallin said

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Probably need to update this - WalMart has already resolved this issue, and informed people that their pre-orders were not actually canceled. It was primarily an issue with display. Everyone's pre-orders are fine.

I got that email from them sometime yesterday, and they've already updated the issue on the SWTOR site as well. Disappointing that you'd report something like this without due diligence, turning it into needless scaremongering.

Posted: Dec 5th 2011 12:56PM dudes said

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Bizzare. Other game shops in the UK could multiply EA's earning by selling the CE. Baffling.

Posted: Dec 5th 2011 2:10PM Aang said

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Man, thats a serious bummer for all those who's pre orders got cancelled. :(

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