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Steamworks question


Morgoth

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So, more and more retail games like Saint's Row 2 and soon DoW2 require you to install Steam and use a key that needs to be registered on your Steam account in order to play your game. This is great because you don't have to need your DVD in your drive, and once registered you can also download the client just in case your dog eats the disk. And as opposed to Mass Effect, you don't have any installation limits or need the disc inserted every 10 days or so.

HOWEVER, this also means that I can't sell my copy anymore because the buyer wouldn't be able to use the copy/key anymore, right? (unlike Mass Effect) So this basically eliminates the second-hand market, or can a Steamwork key be activated over several accounts?

Just asking because then it doesn't really make any difference to buy DoW2 on Steam vs. getting the retail copy.

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Second Hand market is evil.

No it isn't. When something is mine, and I decide to get rid of it, I wanna be able be to get rid of it.

 

>_< That's a minefield, I'm not getting into it.

I came up with Crate 3.0 technology. 

Crate 4.0 - we shall just have to wait and see.

Down and out on the Solomani Rim
Now the Spinward Marches don't look so GRIM!


 

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Second Hand market is evil.

No it isn't. When something is mine, and I decide to get rid of it, I wanna be able be to get rid of it.

 

>_< That's a minefield, I'm not getting into it.

Nah, I'm not trying to get a flamewar started about what's right and what not. I just want to know how often a retail copy can be activated over Steam (i presume only once?). With Mass Effect, you could activated it 3 or 5 (?) times, thus still not preventing some second hand dealing. So in that case, Steamworks should be super-proof, right?

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Second Hand market is evil.

No it isn't. When something is mine, and I decide to get rid of it, I wanna be able be to get rid of it.

 

>_< That's a minefield, I'm not getting into it.

Nah, I'm not trying to get a flamewar started about what's right and what not. I just want to know how often a retail copy can be activated over Steam (i presume only once?). With Mass Effect, you could activated it 3 or 5 (?) times, thus still not preventing some second hand dealing. So in that case, Steamworks should be super-proof, right?

 

You can only activate one copy once. Also you can't deactivate it and then activate it on another account as far as I know

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I haven't been able to trade in or sell a PC game for a long while, all the stores that used to handle PC games gave it up.

 

As for owning the game and it being your right to sell it, it is actually a pretty grey area. You don't get to re-sell games you buy directly over Steam, so this is just moving further in that line of business.

 

You can look at it two ways:

 

1. You buy a ticket to a movie. You watch the movie. You can even watch the movie over and over again. But you can't sell the ticket to someone else.

 

1. You buy a DVD. You can sell the DVD, but once it gets scratched, you are out of luck.

 

These games are basically moving towards the former model. If you don't like it, you can not buy from them. But I honestly don't care enough about the few bucks I get from reselling games to forego buying quality titles.

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Yeah, I'm pretty sure I won't be able to sell DoW2 then. Not that this is a big bua-huahha, as play.com is criminally cheap compared to some local shops. It just doesn't make it worthwhile to purchase games that I can finish in 7 hours anymore at full price and then sell it back (a'la FEAR 2).

 

I think you need to weigh in exactly what you are getting for $50. These are games that cost millions of dollars to make. It can't really be compared to other media forms, but the closest is probably the movies. So movies are initially released in theaters for a reasonable price, but it's a one shot deal and you don't get any ownership from it. You could wait for a movie to come out on DVD about 6 months afterwards and buy it for a reasonable $20. On the otherhand, waiting 6 months on a video game will also probably mean a price drop.

 

I can see why a shorter game would caution you on paying full price. That's why you never see movies under 90 minutes.

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Yeah, I'm pretty sure I won't be able to sell DoW2 then. Not that this is a big bua-huahha, as play.com is criminally cheap compared to some local shops. It just doesn't make it worthwhile to purchase games that I can finish in 7 hours anymore at full price and then sell it back (a'la FEAR 2).

 

That is pretty much the only reason people are still buying so many console games. If the publishers finally have their way and kill the console second-hand market then it will be hilarious to see them blame low sales on some other scapegoat(piracy maybe?)

 

I firmly believe that all games should have demos(that FEAR2 demo was like the first PC demo of a big game in 3 months) and that people should only buy games that they think are actually worth the money.(maybe we'd get better games then)

Edited by Purkake
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Yeah, I'm pretty sure I won't be able to sell DoW2 then. Not that this is a big bua-huahha, as play.com is criminally cheap compared to some local shops. It just doesn't make it worthwhile to purchase games that I can finish in 7 hours anymore at full price and then sell it back (a'la FEAR 2).

 

That is pretty much the only reason people are still buying so many console games. If the publishers finally have their way and kill the console second-hand market then it will be hilarious to see them blame low sales on some other scapegoat(piracy maybe?)

 

I firmly believe that all games should have demos(that FEAR2 demo was like the first PC demo of a big game in 3 months) and that people should only buy games that they think are actually worth the money.(maybe we'd get better games then)

 

Retailer's take something in region of a 40% cut from a game which is sold new. The rest goes to publisher/developer etc...

 

A second hand game is pure profit for the retailer.

 

A game costing $50 once sold makes $20 for the retailer. I buy back that game for $15, and sell it on again at $30, that's just increased the retailers profit. Hence a game which cost $50 in the first place has now made $50 for the retailer, with a risk of $15, the actual folk who've worked on the product have made $30.

 

The sale also only counts as a single unit sold.

 

That's my basic issue with second hand games, I can understand why people buy second hand, it's cheaper so that's a no brainer, but the retailers are making an absolute killing while the developer probably see's what $10 of every unit sold.

 

Naturally there is some room for movement, but those figures are around the correct figure.

 

I agree with the idea of demo's in principle, but it's not always practical to develop a demo.

I came up with Crate 3.0 technology. 

Crate 4.0 - we shall just have to wait and see.

Down and out on the Solomani Rim
Now the Spinward Marches don't look so GRIM!


 

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Yeah, I'm pretty sure I won't be able to sell DoW2 then. Not that this is a big bua-huahha, as play.com is criminally cheap compared to some local shops. It just doesn't make it worthwhile to purchase games that I can finish in 7 hours anymore at full price and then sell it back (a'la FEAR 2).

 

That is pretty much the only reason people are still buying so many console games. If the publishers finally have their way and kill the console second-hand market then it will be hilarious to see them blame low sales on some other scapegoat(piracy maybe?)

 

I firmly believe that all games should have demos(that FEAR2 demo was like the first PC demo of a big game in 3 months) and that people should only buy games that they think are actually worth the money.(maybe we'd get better games then)

 

Retailer's take something in region of a 40% cut from a game which is sold new. The rest goes to publisher/developer etc...

 

A second hand game is pure profit for the retailer.

 

A game costing $50 once sold makes $20 for the retailer. I buy back that game for $15, and sell it on again at $30, that's just increased the retailers profit. Hence a game which cost $50 in the first place has now made $50 for the retailer, with a risk of $15, the actual folk who've worked on the product have made $30.

 

The sale also only counts as a single unit sold.

 

That's my basic issue with second hand games, I can understand why people buy second hand, it's cheaper so that's a no brainer, but the retailers are making an absolute killing while the developer probably see's what $10 of every unit sold.

 

Naturally there is some room for movement, but those figures are around the correct figure.

 

I agree with the idea of demo's in principle, but it's not always practical to develop a demo.

 

I know that second-hand sales are pure profit for the retailer and give developers nothing. The thing is that people would buy less games(new games) if they couldn't sell them back and get another (new game).

 

The problem with digital distribution is that they sell the games at the same price as retailers. I love having my stuff on Steam and the physical boxes haven't been worth buying since the late 90s, but we need more competitive pricing. Is Mirror's Edge really worth the 50 Euros that I payed for it? That's why the Steam holiday sale was so great. Also props for Ubisoft for reducing Farcry 2's cost to 30 bucks.

 

I understand that demos take time to develop, but when did it stop being a standard. Especially on the PC I want to see how well the game runs and how it plays in general.(I'm looking at you GTAIV) It seems like most publishers understand that their game sucks and they just want to take your money.

Edited by Purkake
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You can look at it two ways:

 

1. You buy a ticket to a movie. You watch the movie. You can even watch the movie over and over again. But you can't sell the ticket to someone else.

 

1. You buy a DVD. You can sell the DVD, but once it gets scratched, you are out of luck.

 

 

 

If your ticket or dvd fails to function properly you can either get your money back or another version of the ticket/dvd that actually works.

 

Big difference right there.

 

I can only hope that as some point the govenment steps in and ends this ridiculous freedom of game developers to sell you something that doesn't work and yet still get to keep your money.

Notice how I can belittle your beliefs without calling you names. It's a useful skill to have particularly where you aren't allowed to call people names. It's a mistake to get too drawn in/worked up. I mean it's not life or death, it's just two guys posting their thoughts on a message board. If it were personal or face to face all the usual restraints would be in place, and we would never have reached this place in the first place. Try to remember that.
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You can look at it two ways:

 

1. You buy a ticket to a movie. You watch the movie. You can even watch the movie over and over again. But you can't sell the ticket to someone else.

 

1. You buy a DVD. You can sell the DVD, but once it gets scratched, you are out of luck.

 

 

 

If your ticket or dvd fails to function properly you can either get your money back or another version of the ticket/dvd that actually works.

 

Big difference right there.

 

I can only hope that as some point the govenment steps in and ends this ridiculous freedom of game developers to sell you something that doesn't work and yet still get to keep your money.

 

Also spread misinformation and outright lie in the marketing/hype phase and then sell you a broken product.

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You can look at it two ways:

 

1. You buy a ticket to a movie. You watch the movie. You can even watch the movie over and over again. But you can't sell the ticket to someone else.

 

1. You buy a DVD. You can sell the DVD, but once it gets scratched, you are out of luck.

 

 

 

If your ticket or dvd fails to function properly you can either get your money back or another version of the ticket/dvd that actually works.

 

Big difference right there.

 

I can only hope that as some point the govenment steps in and ends this ridiculous freedom of game developers to sell you something that doesn't work and yet still get to keep your money.

 

Also spread misinformation and outright lie in the marketing/hype phase and then sell you a broken product.

 

I once bought a movie that was unwatchable, some Dracula film. I mean, it wasn't broken, it was just an atrocious piece of film.

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I don't know if that's quite the same, as Crash isn't asking for refunds for poor quality games.

 

 

In any case, what I find funny is that game cost has remained relatively static. Games were $50-$80 when I was growing up 20 years ago, and they still seem to be that price.

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It's not 'not quite the same', it's a completely irrelevant non-comparison.

 

Of course, with a game, it's a lot harder to draw the line as to when it is broken enough to be 'broken'. I do think the bar right now is a bit too low, though, mainly because that bar has been set by the industry itself.

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It's not 'not quite the same', it's a completely irrelevant non-comparison.

 

Awww, I thought hurlie was just making a joke.

 

Actually hurlshot does kinda have a point regarding "spread misinformation and outright lie in the marketing/hype phase". I'm sure the filmmakers thought they did a good job, but his finding it atrocious doesn't make them liars.

 

Of course, with a game, it's a lot harder to draw the line as to when it is broken enough to be 'broken'.

 

What is the deal with returning items that don't work? If I take a TV back to the store claiming it doesn't work, will they give me back my money just on my say so, or will they test it first? A PC game is likely to be incompatible rather than broken, and ultimately that isn't the stores problem.

Edited by Hell Kitty
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I know that second-hand sales are pure profit for the retailer and give developers nothing. The thing is that people would buy less games(new games) if they couldn't sell them back and get another (new game).

 

I personally never resell any games I buy, I also know alot of other people who don't, but naturally that doesn't mean that everyone doesn't. I don't know that you're right, or that you're wrong... This is more opinion surely?

 

 

The problem with digital distribution is that they sell the games at the same price as retailers. I love having my stuff on Steam and the physical boxes haven't been worth buying since the late 90s, but we need more competitive pricing. Is Mirror's Edge really worth the 50 Euros that I payed for it? That's why the Steam holiday sale was so great. Also props for Ubisoft for reducing Farcry 2's cost to 30 bucks.

 

From what I recall its the retailer that sets the price, even where digital distribution is concerned.

 

A friend of mine actually works for GAME (UK retailer), they actually increased price's by

Edited by Nightshape

I came up with Crate 3.0 technology. 

Crate 4.0 - we shall just have to wait and see.

Down and out on the Solomani Rim
Now the Spinward Marches don't look so GRIM!


 

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So then given that if:

 

1) I cannot get a refund or an exchange on a game that doesn't work.

 

2) I cannot resell a game that doesn't work to someone else (Remember: 2nd hand market teh EVIL!)

 

 

What do I do when I buy a game that doesn't work? Am I just out of luck? 50 USD down the drain? Throw the game in the trash and move on?

 

Please explain.

Notice how I can belittle your beliefs without calling you names. It's a useful skill to have particularly where you aren't allowed to call people names. It's a mistake to get too drawn in/worked up. I mean it's not life or death, it's just two guys posting their thoughts on a message board. If it were personal or face to face all the usual restraints would be in place, and we would never have reached this place in the first place. Try to remember that.
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I think you need to weigh in exactly what you are getting for $50. These are games that cost millions of dollars to make. It can't really be compared to other media forms, but the closest is probably the movies.

feh, this is a very silly argument. print publishers spend millions too - check out how much it costs to print all those copies of the latest John Grisham novel or copy of the New York Times. yet nothing stops you from reselling your book or your newspaper (assuming you can find anyone willing to shell out for it).

 

hell, in London, Rupert Murdoch is spending over 40 million pounds a year to produce a newspaper that he gives away for free five nights a week.

 

there might be good reasons for the business model adopted by software publishers, but trying to justify it by reference to production costs is foolish.

Edited by newc0253

dumber than a bag of hammers

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Yeah, I'm pretty sure I won't be able to sell DoW2 then. Not that this is a big bua-huahha, as play.com is criminally cheap compared to some local shops. It just doesn't make it worthwhile to purchase games that I can finish in 7 hours anymore at full price and then sell it back (a'la FEAR 2).

 

That is pretty much the only reason people are still buying so many console games. If the publishers finally have their way and kill the console second-hand market then it will be hilarious to see them blame low sales on some other scapegoat(piracy maybe?)

 

I firmly believe that all games should have demos(that FEAR2 demo was like the first PC demo of a big game in 3 months) and that people should only buy games that they think are actually worth the money.(maybe we'd get better games then)

 

Retailer's take something in region of a 40% cut from a game which is sold new. The rest goes to publisher/developer etc...

 

A second hand game is pure profit for the retailer.

 

A game costing $50 once sold makes $20 for the retailer. I buy back that game for $15, and sell it on again at $30, that's just increased the retailers profit. Hence a game which cost $50 in the first place has now made $50 for the retailer, with a risk of $15, the actual folk who've worked on the product have made $30.

 

The sale also only counts as a single unit sold.

 

That's my basic issue with second hand games, I can understand why people buy second hand, it's cheaper so that's a no brainer, but the retailers are making an absolute killing while the developer probably see's what $10 of every unit sold.

 

Naturally there is some room for movement, but those figures are around the correct figure.

 

I agree with the idea of demo's in principle, but it's not always practical to develop a demo.

 

 

Let's look at it this way:

 

Retailer's take something in region of a 40% cut from a car which is sold new. The rest goes to car manufacturer etc...

 

A second hand car is pure profit for the retailer.

 

A car costing $5000 once sold makes $2000 for the retailer. I buy back that car for $1500, and sell it on again at $3000, that's just increased the retailers profit. Hence a car which cost $5000 in the first place has now made $5000 for the retailer, with a risk of $1500, the actual folk who've worked on the product have made $3000.

 

And to my surprise i never ever seen any car manufacturer to complain about second hand sales...

 

Myself I never ever sold a game i own, i do purchase mostly new and sometimes second hand (only when the game is not available anymore)...

 

But there is one figure people should look at...

 

If someone has yearly gaming budget of $300 he buys 6 new games, let's call him customer 1... that is $180 for publisher/developer (according to your 40% for retailers figure)

If the same person sell all 6 games for $15 he get back $90. If the person is not a skinflint and adds another $10 he can buy 2 more games per year which means $60 more for publisher/developer. At the end publisher/developer get $240.

 

Now look at the person which buys the second hand games...let's call him customer 2 the biggest question is why he is buying sencond hand games? the answer is easy he cannot afford paying full price for a game (i know many people in this situation who rather wait year or even two until the game gets into discount price)...

 

So let's look at his budget...

 

let's say he is a stupid customer and buys second hand games from retailer for $30... we used 6 games for the wealthy customer in 1st example so use this example here aswell... That means we have $180 budget for our less fortunate not-so-wealthy customer. from this budget publisher/developer get $0

 

Let's look if 2nd hand was eliminated.. budget $180 means 3 games which is $108 for developers (if you think that he will pile up his gaming budget just because there is no second hand market to buy as much games as before, you are clearly not married :))... in this scenario the customer 1 was unable to sell any games so he bought only 6 games which means profit $180 for publisher/developer. both numbers together it's $288 profit... in this scenario it's clearly more profitable for publisher/developer.

 

now look at customer 2 if he is acting smart... he does not buy from retailers, he buys directly from seller or from e-bay for $15 per game... for $180 he buys 6 games from customer 1 and because he still has $90 at hand he buys another 6 games from customer 3, which in ideal world were all first sales which means publisher/developer originaly sold 12 games for $600 which means $360 profit for them. This scenario is clearly the most profitable for publisher...

 

both of these examples are representing two opposite sides of how secondhand market works... I let decide you which of these two examples are more fitting the reality... From my experience and observation (which might be totaly different from yours because i live in different part of the world), i can tell you, it's closer to the last example... So from my point of view elimination of second hand market will at the end lead into decreasing profits for publishers and developers...

Edited by Mamoulian War

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2) Final Fantasy XIII - PS3 - 130+ hours

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5) Final Fantasy XIII-2 - PS3 - 200+ hours

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16) Mortal Kombat XL - PS4 - 95+ hours

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[so from my point of view elimination of second hand market will at the end lead into decreasing profits for publishers and developers...

 

 

That's totally true from my point as well. If I buy a game for $50 and then get $20 from a resell, that $20 plus a bit more would go into buying another game, most likely at retail price. Good post.

Notice how I can belittle your beliefs without calling you names. It's a useful skill to have particularly where you aren't allowed to call people names. It's a mistake to get too drawn in/worked up. I mean it's not life or death, it's just two guys posting their thoughts on a message board. If it were personal or face to face all the usual restraints would be in place, and we would never have reached this place in the first place. Try to remember that.
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