A “kafkaesque” story
Been a while since i wrote something, but this is a story i just had to relay.
It’s a story about one of most hyped games this fall – Dead Island, the RPG zombie shooter and how companys can fuck up a gamerelease while screwing around with innocent customers – this is a truly “kafkaesque” story..
So bare with me, the background is this – we can all agree that PC games are supposed to be region free, right? That’s one of the reasons we still carry on with our PC gaming. Region free – we can play our games anywhere on any PC as long as we pay for the game, have a Jolt Cola and masturbate alone. The same reason would be why we use cloud gaming services like steam, right? We can just remember our accountname and password and then we’re set to go on any PC anywhere?
Besides this The fact that the game can’t be played without a Steam account was nowhere to be found on retail websites or the retail boxes.
Steam fucking it up royally!
So back to the release – it all started out with Steam fucking it up royally by uploading the wrong version of the game to their server on a friday, people coming home from work, preordered, plans with friends in motion for the hyped co-op gameplay.. Yeah right, nothing worked out out as planned. Steam promised a swift solution that never came, duh! Thoose few who eventually could play all over the world voiced huge complaints of laggy and unfinished gameplay, comparing it with a game still in BETA.
Over 39.000 views on the now legendary steam thread
During this time most of the european countrys still were having serious problems even activating the retail provided game key. Over 39.000 views on the steam thread http://forums.steamgames.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2109039 with gamers (who payed god money via various serious retailers) having problems activating their game key is allready legendary. Turns out the retailers got games intended for the eastern europe market – like that would have anything to do with anything since PC GAMES ARE IN FACT SUPPOSED TO BE REGION FREE!! Besides this, customers report getting retail boxes with no activation key and no manual – just how bad can you handle a release Deep Silver?
Deep silver probably wont release a game again – if they’re smart..
Thoose few who even got dignified with a reply from Steam, Deep Silver or their local game dealer, just got bounced between them. Steam telling the poor gamers to go to their local retailer and get the game changed to a game intendeed for the western european market, Deep Silver saying the same bullshit – like it’s the customers problem.. (and hey why not, they allready got the poor gamer-kids money) They probably have no plans to ever release a game again, (if they’re smart) and the retailers saying Steam fucked up.
” We regret any inconvenience this may have caused. Unfortunatly we have to tell you that we couldn’t register any unvalid Steam product keys through our high selling rates. The message you received occurs, if you try to activate the game which is not specifically valid for your area. In this case we and Steam can’t help you to find a solution. We would like to ask you to contact your retailer and exchange the game.”
Do you really think a paying customer gives a flying fuck to what region the game was intended for release on a friday night after a long week?!
[Edit] A funny fact is, there’s no way to see it’s intended for any region on the retail box, I just got that confirmed from a friend. So god luck with that “region shit” in court!
Paying almost 100$ for a zombie game..
So over thousands of european gamers sits around on release day with a game they can’t activate. Some of them so desperate, they buy the game all over from steam – with the result of having payed almost 100$ for zombie game.. ROFL!!
The local game dealers are the only heroes here – shame on Steam, Shame on Deep Silver!
Some gamers however found a solution, with the help of some retailers providing them with instructions on how to activate the game by VPN via hungarian proxys. http://www.gameware.at/info/space/Dead+Island+VPN+Aktivierung Theese guys has to be the ONLY heroes in this story – cuz none of the two big companys (Deep silver and Steam) have been paying any attention to the thousands of gamers – many of them teenagers who payed god money to be able to play their zombie game with friends at the friday night release. No official reply, not a single comment in the the forums. Worst of all – they are now trying to play the “blame game” – and make the customers go back to their retailer.. And remember, not a single word about the game not beeing region free pre release.
Get it here and use “demo/demo”
Activating Dead Island via proxy or VPN
That’s how you solve a problem – you fix it fast for the paying customer, then you can sit down and blame eachother for all etarnity while your customers play their game. The gamers just dont give a shit what went wrong and why should they? Would you, given the same situation?
Now there’s talk amongst the gamers they might get banned for using the method above provided by the resellers.. But to be honest, not even Steam can be so fucking stupid, pulling a stunt like that on their customers. It’s not like their alone anymore with their cloud service for games with the mighty release of Star Wars Online via Electronic Arts Origin.
On a sidenote – thoose who illegally cracked and downloaded the game from Pirate Bay etc. probably have been playing it for weeks without any problems and without any risk of getting banned. Worth thinking about.
“Requires activation over steam” – Might get you in a “kafkaesque” reality
From now on customers would be wise in demanding a “Requires activation over steam” stamp on the retail box – because with the above story as background I would think twice before I buy anything having anything to do with steam in the future.
Over and out!
/Blackie – using Origin since years back btw