Steam Adds Refund Option for Pre-Orders

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cursedseishi:
So...

This isn't a refund. It's called cancelling a pre-order. You can dress a pig up like a rather convincing cow, but it's still a pig despite the paint and mechanical udder.

A refund, is what gog.com does for it's games. If it has issues and its been less than 30 days, you get your money back. Nitpicky, I know, but still.

While that is true, it's a step in the right direction at least.

How is this news exactly? Steam has already been doing that, although beforehand you had to go through customer support to get there, but it was actually already doable to get a refund on a pre-order. Whats hard is getting a refund for any other game that isnt a pre-order, though Valve so far has had the unspoken policy of "once, but no more" in terms of refunds unless you can quote them the law of your respective country that tells them they dont have a legal leg to stand on.

Point still stands, you could cancel pre-orders before this already and get your money back, it just wasnt a system within the client yet, so how them making it easier to do what they always did is "news" is beyond me. Thats like making a news article about how water in a bottle is just bottled water. We already knew this.

Also for those who moan about a potential real refund-policy that can be abused, everything can be abused. However Valve has the upside that they can actually check how long you've played the game, or whether you played it at all. A System based around this is relatively simple.
1: Has it been installed within 30 days of purchase? If not, full refund.
2: Has it been installed but not been played beyond 2 Hours within 2 Days? If yes, full refund (faulty product).
3: Is it a gift? If yes, no refund.
4: Has it been played for more than 5 Hours since purchase? Partial Refund (semi-rental)
5: Has it been played for more than 10 Hours? If yes, no refund.

Valve can check how long you've played a game, hence you cant easily abuse this, if they however allow partial refunds, like getting half your cash back, it allows a semi-rental system that still makes money. Hence if you want to return short games because they are short, or the experience is underwhelming about halfway in, you still can get half your money back, which is a better system than what EA does.

Pebkio:

Oh yes, of course...

The demo of Bioshock Infinite was actually noticably different. You'd think someone, like you, would've, at least, looked into THE ACTUAL CLAIM before dismissing me as the original poster who was only complaining that I just didn't like what we got. No, I did not prepay for a game for the first time ever on a silly whim. They sold us on an idea that they didn't deliver.

The gameplay trailer for Bioshock Infinite is actually, surprisingly, comparable to the Aliens: Colonial Marines trailer.

It's interesting that you talk down on me for not researching when YOU DIDN'T EVEN LOOK INTO ANYTHING AT ALL! You could not have been more wrong. So where is your "consumer responsibility" bull if you aren't even going to practice what you preach?

Edit: And if the actual game was anywhere NEAR as awesome as those trailers made it look, I would still be playing it today with a smile on my face and a warm "this was a good 60 bucks I spent" feeling in my chest.

I disagree actually. And heres why. The reason Alien: Colonial Marines was called out for false advertising was because there were objectively diffierent things shown in the demo/gameplay footage to the final product, things not based on opinion.

In Aliens the actual game, the animation quality, graphical quality, particle effects etc were all noticeably worse than what was advertised. These are things we can MEASURE things we can objectively show that are different from the final product.

What you are saying is "I like the the look/feel/style of the gameplay/world etc in the trailer more compared to the actual product". That isnt false advertising, that is you having a different opinion. The graphical quality, setting, graphical style, basic characters,weapons and abilities are all present in the final product.

Personally I like the trailer, but I would not want to play the exact game in that trailer. It looks heavily scripted and I would find it boring, and I love the actual product. Thats having an opinion, not the developers lying to you about an objective quality about the game.

OT: To everyone saying this isnt enough, I also disagree. I think you should be able to get a refund in only 2 circumstances. If the product is falsely advertised in some way, or through bugs/etc you are unable to play the game.

If you don't like it, if you thought it would be different, that to me isn't good enough. Valve should stick to what is legally required, and what is legally required is when the product either does not work, or was incorrectly described. They should NOT be giving the possibility for gamers to be able to play a game and then return it without a good reason. And saying "I didnt like it" is not a good reason.

OT Further: Good first steps.

Metalrocks:
sorry wait. since when is this new???
i have gotten my money back from pre ordered games. ok, this system sounds simpler but not new for steam. i would be rather happy if we can sell the games we dont want.

It's new in the sense that it's fully automated now. No involvement from Steam Support.

Still, I agree. Refunds and such have been a part of Steam for years. Why anyone's making a big deal out of this, and for that matter why anyone still thinks Steam doesn't have refund options, is beyond me.

Next we need returns on Early access games that come out in barely playable states with no content. Come on!

But ya steam should inact a small window for a refund if a game doesn't have a demo.

The only part of this that is new is the funds going directly into your Steam wallet and not back to your bank account.

Steam has allowed cancellation of pre-orders for years. Why is this only being mentioned now? If it's a Valve press release then it smacks of trying to get a little more positive PR.

What Valve really needs to do is allow customers to sell used games from our Steam libraries back to Steam for 70% of the price we paid for it, or the game's current normal price when it's not on sale, whichever is lower. If you bought a $60 game for $50 on the Steam Summer Sale, you get 70% of $50 if you return it, which would come out to $35. If you decided to keep that game for 2 years before returning it, when new copies of that game only cost $20, you would only get $20 for returning it.

Regardless of when you choose to return a game, doing so would uninstall it from your computer, remove it from your Steam library, and invalidate any serials or keys associated with your copy of the game. If you decided later on that you wanted to play that game again, you would need to purchase a new copy.

There also needs to be a short window of time immediately after purchasing in which you can return it for 100% of the price you paid - a safety net for customers against buying shitty games because they had no opportunity to try it for themselves before shelling out money for it. This window of time should be something like a week - sufficiently long to allow you to get a feel for whether or not you think the game in question is worth the price you paid, but sufficiently short that you don't have a lot of time to log into your Steam account on all your friends' computers and let them play it.

If Valve were to implement these two features, Steam customers would be able to return older games they don't want anymore for a discount on new ones, as well as feel safer buying new games on release day, because if you decide that it's a shitty game in the first week of playing it, you can get your money back.

I think steam should have refunds in the sense that if customer support can't guide you to fixing the problem after you've asked for help, and the game still doesn't work, you should get your money back for a product that doesn't work.

Refunds because of "QUAAALITYYY" are complete hogwash. Is this really just me? This doesn't seem like fair customer treatment, it seems like petty entitlement.

You're not always going to like everything that you buy. Companies don't have any sort of responsibility to give you a refund just because you didn't like something. Valve certainly doesn't.

And it's all almost completely subjective. Outside the once in 2 years examples of blatant false advertising, if you don't like a game it's not the fucking companies responsibility to give you back money! The game just didn't happen to suit your particular tastes, it's going to fucking happen, life doesn't revolve around accommodating you.

Maybe I'm overreacting but it just seems entitled and childish. There might be good arguments here but I'm not seeing them.

Strazdas:

BrotherRool:

I think it's much more likely to be Valve dragging their feet. Refunding digital items is tricky*, because any sort of decent time period opens people up to 'renting' all their games. A lot of the reason the system works at retail is there's a lot of hassle involved in getting a refund, you've got to actually pack a physical thing up and travel some place... You'd need to invent some system that doesn't make it easy for people to ask for a refund w/e, but then that probably costs manpower.

considering that on steam valve tracks thier games quite thoroughly they could easily implement progress/time spent requirements as in you cant just finish a game and reund it. if you play it for 2 hours and hate it - sure refund away. play it for 50 hours in a weekend, finish it and refund it - nope. And that would even be more reliable than retail refunding since retails dont actually know if you just spent last week playing it whol day long or not, steam does.

You're right, that would be a really good system. There's no reason for them not to implement that, unless they want to profit from sale-induced panic purchases or people buying bad games

Strazdas:

BrotherRool:

Urghh no that would suck. I don't have so much time that I want to throw it down the drain or dedicate my whole life to playing videogames. If companies were incentivised to pad out all their freaking games, regardless of whether it's better as a 5 hour game or a 30 hour one, everything would either become incredibly cruddy, or we'd lose all the game genres except for one type that certain people like. There'd be no Journey or Gone Home or Stanley Parable, or even Uncharted. It's fine if you're only into multiplayer games, or if you actually like having to spend a month playing before getting to the end of your RPG but otherwise you'd be screwed.

then i take you dont remmeber when we had shooters that would take 20 hours to complete because they would actually have long campaigns?

Sidmen:

It's all about value for money, my friend. If you pay five or ten bucks for a game, 2-5 hours of entertainment is a good return. If I pay 60 bucks for a game and get five hours out of it - I feel ripped off. It's completely driven me out of the shooter market. Of course, I'm a special case, I understand that most shooters are now meant to be played online, something I don't do.

Time =/= value, in fact time is valuable and if a games is wasting my time then it's costing me. I don't play online games and I do remember 20 hour campaigns. And you know what? I hate them. My biggest problem with Dragon Age is it's too long, my biggest problem with Persona 4 is it's too long.

If you play a 20 hour game for 3 hours every single day, it will still take you 3 weeks to finish. That's three weeks where you can't play other games, you can't read, you can't go out. All just to see the ending of one frickin' game. That's not value, that's just irritating. For a 40 hour game, we're talking over a month and a half of your life devoted to one single videogame.

You don't watch a film and say 'that would have been much more valuable if they added a 3 hour chase sequence', you don't weigh a book and say 'hmm this isn't heavy enough to be valuable.' Of Mice and Men wouldn't be better if they jammed in an extra 500 pages. Being a good writer is about not filling your books with paragraph after paragraph of unnecessary description, and not adding pointless scenes just for the sake of it.

Games shouldn't be padded out, they should be exactly as long as they've still got something new to show you. Adding in another 10 hours of shooting people in corridors didn't make old shooters more fun. Half Life 2, one of the best shooters of all time? 15 hours. Max Payne 2? 7 hours.

It changes game to game, if you've ever played Alan Wake, that games 15 hours long and it's way too much. It's just pointless encounter after pointless encounter and it completely spoils the story and mood having it stretched out like that.

I would say though, if you want to go above 20 hours, then that time should be in optional sidequests or free-play mode or something, because there are people who don't have that time to invest. I'm guessing we're all students or younger right? Because I've got friends who've graduated and now that they're working 9-5 with extra work when they get home and having to go to sleep 10-12pm ish (it sounds horrifying :P), they've suddenly really began to appreciate their time

hickwarrior:

Sidmen:

hickwarrior:
This does sound good, but valve still has a long way to go before actually having a true refund. This is nothing.

Refund for a game your purchased that you can't play yet? AND it only goes to your steam wallet? Meh. Not even close to a good refund policy.

Could you imagine the games industry's reaction if we could actually get a decent refund policy? They might have to work to make sure a game lasts longer than 5 hours then - heck, a lot of games I play could've been returned within a day of release with how painfully short and boring they are.

Yet, steam is the provider. I'm wondering what's holding them back when it comes to refunds... It could be AAA doing it, since they can revoke their agreement maybe, but steam has such weight in the market that they don't have that excuse.

I can't see valve having excuses at all to NOT allow refund policies on steam. And good ones, not ones that just benefit them.

I can explain why they don't. Because Valve is like every other game company. They don't actually like you, they just pretend to so that you give them your money. Valve's got a reputation among it's hardcore fans as being very Pro Consumer, and very fair. But their actual policies (No refunds, pushing the sale of unfinished games, speaking out against DRM despite being the biggest form of DRM) all make the fans liars.

They don't give refunds because they don't have to. They go without a refund policy by and large because they can and nobody calls them on it.

BrotherRool:

Sidmen:

It's all about value for money, my friend. If you pay five or ten bucks for a game, 2-5 hours of entertainment is a good return. If I pay 60 bucks for a game and get five hours out of it - I feel ripped off. It's completely driven me out of the shooter market. Of course, I'm a special case, I understand that most shooters are now meant to be played online, something I don't do.

Time =/= value, in fact time is valuable and if a games is wasting my time then it's costing me. I don't play online games and I do remember 20 hour campaigns. And you know what? I hate them. My biggest problem with Dragon Age is it's too long, my biggest problem with Persona 4 is it's too long.

If you play a 20 hour game for 3 hours every single day, it will still take you 3 weeks to finish. That's three weeks where you can't play other games, you can't read, you can't go out. All just to see the ending of one frickin' game. That's not value, that's just irritating. For a 40 hour game, we're talking over a month and a half of your life devoted to one single videogame.

You don't watch a film and say 'that would have been much more valuable if they added a 3 hour chase sequence', you don't weigh a book and say 'hmm this isn't heavy enough to be valuable.' Of Mice and Men wouldn't be better if they jammed in an extra 500 pages. Being a good writer is about not filling your books with paragraph after paragraph of unnecessary description, and not adding pointless scenes just for the sake of it.

Games shouldn't be padded out, they should be exactly as long as they've still got something new to show you. Adding in another 10 hours of shooting people in corridors didn't make old shooters more fun. Half Life 2, one of the best shooters of all time? 15 hours. Max Payne 2? 7 hours.

It changes game to game, if you've ever played Alan Wake, that games 15 hours long and it's way too much. It's just pointless encounter after pointless encounter and it completely spoils the story and mood having it stretched out like that.

I would say though, if you want to go above 20 hours, then that time should be in optional sidequests or free-play mode or something, because there are people who don't have that time to invest. I'm guessing we're all students or younger right? Because I've got friends who've graduated and now that they're working 9-5 with extra work when they get home and having to go to sleep 10-12pm ish (it sounds horrifying :P), they've suddenly really began to appreciate their time

So, if a game is long, it's padded? I think you're just talking about bad games. Games can be bad regardless of their length.

So, you play games 3 hours at a time - well, that right there is our disconnect. I'll take that 20 hour game and grind right through it in a single weekend. Give me a 5-hour game and I'll pop through it by mid-afternoon Saturday then be looking around for something else to do Few games are enjoyable enough to get me to feel like I got a good value from a 60 dollar game that didn't meaningfully fill more of my time than an 8-dollar movie would.

If you don't get your money back, it's not a refund, period. I'm also a bit surprised that something like this didn't exist already.

Cecilo:
But torrenting a game runs the risk of getting in trouble while you download that 22gigabyte download now doesn't it. As well as a risk of viruses and malware. Instead finding a crack for a game is quite easy, and while it also runs the risk of viruses and malware, it is only one or two files.

Especially with the new strike program the companies in the US are using. Anything to avoid long torrents is good for those would be pirates.

I would like to make it clear I am not defending or condoning piracy just offering a counter argument.

Viruses are practically nonexistent in reputable scene releases. Even if they were a noteworthy issue there is a crowd sourced community of guinea pigs posting in the comments section.

The three strike program is effectively propaganda in that it emboldens those in support of it and is brushed off by those who know it to be such. The only ones that it scared where those who were on the fence about pirating, not the hardcore or even moderate infringers . Most anyone that pirates knows how to stop people from snooping on their torrents. Hell, most torrent sites are saturated with advertisements for services that let you get around snooping.

Sidmen:

So, if a game is long, it's padded? I think you're just talking about bad games. Games can be bad regardless of their length.

So, you play games 3 hours at a time - well, that right there is our disconnect. I'll take that 20 hour game and grind right through it in a single weekend. Give me a 5-hour game and I'll pop through it by mid-afternoon Saturday then be looking around for something else to do Few games are enjoyable enough to get me to feel like I got a good value from a 60 dollar game that didn't meaningfully fill more of my time than an 8-dollar movie would.

so ultimately you agree with me right? What you were talking about at the start were companies being forced not to make 5 hour games anymore because people would just return the game. Which is okay for people like you, but isn't okay for anyone who is unable/doesn't want to spend 20 hours of their weekend on one game.

Whereas with the current system, you can read reviews and avoid 5 hour games and play the big CRPGs etc and I can play the 8* hour games and be happy with my time.

Besides if you actually want to do the maths on it, an 8 hour game is the correct 'money per minute' value or whatever. A DVD cost $15 for 2 hours, a game costs $60 for 8 hours. That's exactly $7.50 per hour each. If you were comparing cinema prices then you're forgetting that you're only 'renting' the film and you can't replay/rewatch. Of course books smash both into the dust

Games can be bad regardless of their length, but padding is a specifically bad thing that happens only to overly long games. And to make a game longer without padding takes more skill, because you need to come up with 10 hours more stuff than with an 8 hour game, so whilst you can get good long games (Mass Effect and Fallout: New Vegas), there's naturally going to be fewer good long games than there are short games.

*Even I probably wouldn't buy a 5 hour game at $60. There's a sort of acceptable region between 8-30 where I don't care about game length but I do agree that a 5 hour game would literally have to change my life to be worthwhile. In the same way I don't care about book length for 150-400 ish pages, but a book has to be really good outside of that. Of Mice and Men is actually an exception

josemlopes:
Why would any one pre-order anything on Steam? Is it just because of the pre-load option? Even then how long does it take to download a game and how impatient can someone be?

I pre-order a game when I know for sure I am buying it no matter what. So for example I would have bought Skyrim no matter the reviews because I am a fan of the Elder Scrolls Franchise. The same goes for Dark Souls 2 in March. In them cases I feel that Pre-Ordering is useful since you get a small discount and you can play the game right away. However, in any case other than that then I agree with you entirely that pre-ordering is a complete waste of money.

Vigormortis:
Kind of sick of constantly addressing the bevy of misinformation and half-truths that pop up on this topic; many of which are already everywhere in this thread; so I'm not going to address them.

However, I will just say this:
Steam has offered refunds for years. Origin and GoG.com are the newcomers to the practice.

If you had a legitimate issue with a purchased game on Steam, an issue that you felt could only be rectified with a refund, and you contacted Steam Support about it, they more often than not would refund you.

The only difference between that and Origin/GoG's methods are that the latter methods are some amalgam of pseudo-automation and manual support.

But, you know, it's easier to just bitch about Steam not having a thing it actually has than to bother to research the truth.

Oh wow, talk about not bothering to 'research the truth'.

Steam will actually ban your account if you try to get a refund through a chargeback or the relevant legal authority (e.g. the ACCC). They flatout say 'no refunds on games already in your library', and they might make an exception occasionally but you do not count on it (FYI this is also illegal).

GMG, GOG and Origin already had great refund policies (i.e. they'd still obey Australian law), just they never mentioned it. Now they essentially have warranties which are set in stone and have to be obeyed and aren't as ambiguous as the law is (which isn't much but valve are indeed breaking Australian law).

I've wanted refunds for games my laptop cannot run and they threatened to ban my account if I so much as hinted at disagreeing with this.

Steam is a crappy service these days, there's no 2 ways about it. GOG and GMG have FANTASTIC support, don't price discriminate between regions, and have no DRM. Origin you can get refunds anyway (even before they 'announced a policy') but steam has NEVER done this and still doesn't, which also cuts into the gross profit margins of other businesses as they can't refund steam keys to anyone and lose business as a result.

Well, wow. GOG offers refunds if the game doesn't work, even Origin offers refunds for anything, and what about legendary Valve? If the game doesn't get released at all, they'll be nice enough to allow you to use your money for other Steam games. Yea hooray Valve indeed.

It's a step in the right direction but this is hardly a refund, this is just cancelling a pre-order, which pretty much every store lets you do already, Maybe work on it becoming not nearly as much as a rare thing to return a game valve?

I mean anyone who has tried to return a game on steam knows that its a nightmare, especially if its your second or third time,
most times valve lets you return one game once and thats it...

I mean come on valve get with the program...

Refunds need to be easier and less of a hassle and more common

rapidoud:

Oh wow, talk about not bothering to 'research the truth'.

Steam will actually ban your account if you try to get a refund through a chargeback or the relevant legal authority (e.g. the ACCC). They flatout say 'no refunds on games already in your library', and they might make an exception occasionally but you do not count on it (FYI this is also illegal).

They account lock or ban on chargebacks because you are effectively attempting to circumvent their own security system by using your bank to take back your money while also keeping the product in question.

I was already aware of this but didn't think I needed to explain it in full to get my point across. But I guess you're right. I should have written a page-long post describing every facet of Steams purchase, trade, and refund policies.

My apologies.

I've wanted refunds for games my laptop cannot run and they threatened to ban my account if I so much as hinted at disagreeing with this.

Funny, I and many others that I know have had no issue getting refunds on faulty or broken products bought on Steam; save for one occasion.

I know they don't grant refunds on everything nor in every occasion, but the fact remains that they do indeed give refunds.

And I could be wrong, but I think you're flat-out lying when you claim that they literally "threatened" to account ban you for asking for a refund. Perhaps it's your verbiage but it sounds rather fantastic.

Steam is a crappy service these days, there's no 2 ways about it. GOG and GMG have FANTASTIC support, don't price discriminate between regions, and have no DRM. Origin you can get refunds anyway (even before they 'announced a policy') but steam has NEVER done this and still doesn't, which also cuts into the gross profit margins of other businesses as they can't refund steam keys to anyone and lose business as a result.

I've had nothing but misery in dealing with Origin and GoG support. In most instances I had to turn to community suggestions or mods to fix things I had issue with.

I've had few issues with Steam's support. Every time I've needed to contact Steam Support they responded with helpful information in an expedient manner. Whereas I've waited weeks a times for a response from EA's support; if a response ever comes.

You can say all day that "there are no 2 ways about it", but most of your; and indeed my; experiences with any of these services are going to be different and ultimately subjective. You've had issue with Steam and nothing but bright and sunny days with Origin, GoG, etc. I've had the opposite experience. (hell, I've had less trouble with Uplay than I have with Origin and GoG, for god's sake)

And again, Steam does grant refunds. Not in every instance but to say they don't at all is a lie.

Besides, I bought two games through Origin; two EA games specifically, Dead Space 3 and The Sims; and was denied refunds on both. So from my perspective, EA/Origin most certainly do not offer refunds.

Sidmen:

cursedseishi:
So...

This isn't a refund. It's called cancelling a pre-order. You can dress a pig up like a rather convincing cow, but it's still a pig despite the paint and mechanical udder.

A refund, is what gog.com does for it's games. If it has issues and its been less than 30 days, you get your money back. Nitpicky, I know, but still.

So....

You paid for something and was awaiting its delivery. You decided that you no longer want it, and they (re)turn your (fund)s. Refund.

Actually, if you want to play semantics as terribly as that...
A refund is you returning the product and getting your money back. Right there. See it? (Re)turn the product to get back your (fund)s. Now, and this might get a tad complicated here for you to understand, that means the product is available to use for you before you decide to get your money back.

That example you listed? You aren't returning anything. But hey, let's see you order something from a company, and then the day before it ships call them up demanding a refund. After they are done laughing at you off phone, they'll tell you "So you want to just cancel your order? Or would you prefer waiting til we ship it out to you first so you can then send it back and ask for a refund then?"

It isn't really that hard of a concept for most to keep up with, but not everyone is that fortunate I suppose.

Strazdas:
snip

why is it steams fault you bought the game on the first day without looking at reviews. Its not steams responsibility to take care of you when you make a disappointing purchase. I can understand the idea that a game doesn't work, but steam has already been giving refunds for that for years.

rapidoud:

Vigormortis:
Kind of sick of constantly addressing the bevy of misinformation and half-truths that pop up on this topic; many of which are already everywhere in this thread; so I'm not going to address them.

However, I will just say this:
Steam has offered refunds for years. Origin and GoG.com are the newcomers to the practice.

If you had a legitimate issue with a purchased game on Steam, an issue that you felt could only be rectified with a refund, and you contacted Steam Support about it, they more often than not would refund you.

The only difference between that and Origin/GoG's methods are that the latter methods are some amalgam of pseudo-automation and manual support.

But, you know, it's easier to just bitch about Steam not having a thing it actually has than to bother to research the truth.

Oh wow, talk about not bothering to 'research the truth'.

Steam will actually ban your account if you try to get a refund through a chargeback or the relevant legal authority (e.g. the ACCC). They flatout say 'no refunds on games already in your library', and they might make an exception occasionally but you do not count on it (FYI this is also illegal).

GMG, GOG and Origin already had great refund policies (i.e. they'd still obey Australian law), just they never mentioned it. Now they essentially have warranties which are set in stone and have to be obeyed and aren't as ambiguous as the law is (which isn't much but valve are indeed breaking Australian law).

I've wanted refunds for games my laptop cannot run and they threatened to ban my account if I so much as hinted at disagreeing with this.

Steam is a crappy service these days, there's no 2 ways about it. GOG and GMG have FANTASTIC support, don't price discriminate between regions, and have no DRM. Origin you can get refunds anyway (even before they 'announced a policy') but steam has NEVER done this and still doesn't, which also cuts into the gross profit margins of other businesses as they can't refund steam keys to anyone and lose business as a result.

Steam will lock your account (Make it so you can't purchase more games but still able to play the games you already have) If you try to get a charge back, because it 1) Costs them money, and 2) Because that isn't a refund, that is taking your money back without giving the product back.

Further, the system requirements for each game are on the page you buy them on, while I do agree that they should give a refund if you can't play it, you should have done your research first all the same.

But as for the idea that steam does not give refunds, they do. Many people got refunds for The War Z (Now named Infestation Zombie Survivor something). You can get a refund if you ask Steam, if you go through the right process, not through a chargeback. Which I will remind you, Origin, will also ban you if you try to get a chargeback on a product, you may recall the Simcity fiasco. - http://answers.ea.com/t5/Origin/EA-Banning-People-Who-Request-Chargebacks-for-Defective-Product/td-p/659356

Any company will ban you if you use a charge back, many companies will try to put you on a "Do not do business with this person" List as well. So please. Stop acting like Steam is the only company to punish you for doing something you shouldn't.

I think they also need to refund crappy Pre-Release Early Access games that have either stopped patching regularly, or released Early Access games that failed to deliver on all of the fronts they promised when you purchased the game. Then they need to add in a refund for games that don't function.... at all..., as well as multiplayer games with no servers (see DungeonLand until recently). In fact, Steam has become a breeding ground for failed and abandoned games since the advent of Steam Greenlight, and while it does some good, it has started to tarnish Steam's reputation (as well as my faith in the product).

As has been said, this isn't news. It isn't even worth arguing over the word 'refund' is the right word, since they're pretty much just automating something they've already been happy to do. Still, I'm not about to pretend this is a BAD thing.

Vigormortis:
Snip

See, the thing that annoys me is that the Steam TOS and appropriate support page pretty much says "no refunds for releasd content ever", despite the fact that I've heard so many different stories saying otherwise. Either it's as you said case-by-case, or it's only one per lifetime, or something else entirely. Would be nice to have a source clarifying it all.

cursedseishi:

Actually, if you want to play semantics as terribly as that...
A refund is you returning the product and getting your money back. Right there. See it? (Re)turn the product to get back your (fund)s. Now, and this might get a tad complicated here for you to understand, that means the product is available to use for you before you decide to get your money back.

That example you listed? You aren't returning anything. But hey, let's see you order something from a company, and then the day before it ships call them up demanding a refund. After they are done laughing at you off phone, they'll tell you "So you want to just cancel your order? Or would you prefer waiting til we ship it out to you first so you can then send it back and ask for a refund then?"

It isn't really that hard of a concept for most to keep up with, but not everyone is that fortunate I suppose.

What dictionary are you using? I'm only asking because Webster disagrees with you. All a refund refers to is the repayment of the money - you want a refund because you are cancelling your order. You can cancel an order and not receive a refund for it, depending on the contract you agreed to.

Simultaneously, I have gotten calls asking for a refund on prepaid goods. The answer was no, at the time, because our policy is pretty strict on that count. So your fictional company response there is, well, fictional.

Infernal Lawyer:

See, the thing that annoys me is that the Steam TOS and appropriate support page pretty much says "no refunds for releasd content ever", despite the fact that I've heard so many different stories saying otherwise. Either it's as you said case-by-case, or it's only one per lifetime, or something else entirely. Would be nice to have a source clarifying it all.

It's essentially a case-by-case thing. Though, if it's just a general, "I don't like this game so I want my money back", they will usually deny it.

I wish there were a different system in place, to be honest. While it's possible to get refunds on Steam, it's still a hassle.

Seeing that they've automated this current form of refunding, I feel a slight sense of encouragement that perhaps they may make other (better) changes to their current general return/refund policy.

BrotherRool:

Time =/= value, in fact time is valuable and if a games is wasting my time then it's costing me. I don't play online games and I do remember 20 hour campaigns. And you know what? I hate them. My biggest problem with Dragon Age is it's too long, my biggest problem with Persona 4 is it's too long.

If you play a 20 hour game for 3 hours every single day, it will still take you 3 weeks to finish. That's three weeks where you can't play other games, you can't read, you can't go out. All just to see the ending of one frickin' game. That's not value, that's just irritating. For a 40 hour game, we're talking over a month and a half of your life devoted to one single videogame.

You don't watch a film and say 'that would have been much more valuable if they added a 3 hour chase sequence', you don't weigh a book and say 'hmm this isn't heavy enough to be valuable.' Of Mice and Men wouldn't be better if they jammed in an extra 500 pages. Being a good writer is about not filling your books with paragraph after paragraph of unnecessary description, and not adding pointless scenes just for the sake of it.

Games shouldn't be padded out, they should be exactly as long as they've still got something new to show you. Adding in another 10 hours of shooting people in corridors didn't make old shooters more fun. Half Life 2, one of the best shooters of all time? 15 hours. Max Payne 2? 7 hours.

It changes game to game, if you've ever played Alan Wake, that games 15 hours long and it's way too much. It's just pointless encounter after pointless encounter and it completely spoils the story and mood having it stretched out like that.

I would say though, if you want to go above 20 hours, then that time should be in optional sidequests or free-play mode or something, because there are people who don't have that time to invest. I'm guessing we're all students or younger right? Because I've got friends who've graduated and now that they're working 9-5 with extra work when they get home and having to go to sleep 10-12pm ish (it sounds horrifying :P), they've suddenly really began to appreciate their time

Wow this went into first world problems really fast. You like the game so much you play it for 20 hours then complain that you like it too much and spend too much time on it. your basically complaining that the games are too good so you want to play them for long. Your argument wasnt that it was bad or panned out or anything, merely long. sorry but i see this as a benefit, not an issue.

Now, i dont know what you do in life but if you only have 3 hours per day free time left for anything you are obviuosly not the average person. i can understand you dont want to spend all your free time for games so you spend only 3 hours a day, but 3 hours a day is not all you have. you can play 3 hours a day and read and go out. And if you play games only to see the ending then you can do that in 10 minutes on youtube. here i just saved you 20 hours. Meanwhile i will continue playing games because i enjoy playing them.
I devoted almost a year to morrowind and it was worth it, because the game was good.

No, i watch a film and say "That would have been much more value if we saw more of it" though. because there are plenty of films that i would love to see continue. in fact the reason i often like tv series more is because its a continuation of a story rather than a rushed 2 hour job.

noone said anything about games being padded out. we want games that last longer, no are padded out to be longer. you know, more than 2 hours of content you never want to repeat. its as you blame us for wanting to have games we like enough to play for long.
Max payne only took 7 hours to complete but it was good enough so i played it for 50. thats what long games mean - you can enjoy it for long, not that you need to grind through campaign for long. This is why i didnt finish Empire earth campaign - it was a grind. and why i spent 400+ hours in civilization 4 - it was fun.

to put it shortly, its not about the lenght of campaign, its about the amount of time you enjoy the game. and if your enjoyment comes only from the ending, then maybe you should skip the 20 boring hours altogether?

BrotherRool:

Besides if you actually want to do the maths on it, an 8 hour game is the correct 'money per minute' value or whatever. A DVD cost $15 for 2 hours, a game costs $60 for 8 hours. That's exactly $7.50 per hour each. If you were comparing cinema prices then you're forgetting that you're only 'renting' the film and you can't replay/rewatch. Of course books smash both into the dust

Games can be bad regardless of their length, but padding is a specifically bad thing that happens only to overly long games. And to make a game longer without padding takes more skill, because you need to come up with 10 hours more stuff than with an 8 hour game, so whilst you can get good long games (Mass Effect and Fallout: New Vegas), there's naturally going to be fewer good long games than there are short games.

Its been a while since i saw a 15 dollar DVD. Netflix costs what 10 dollars for 24*30=720 hours, thats 4320 hours per 60 dollar value. Sure i picked extreme example, but even at your 3 hours a day that would still be 90 hours for 10 dollars.

since you brought the "rewarch" argument then we must assume that you rewach a movie, lets say 2 times. thats now 6 hours for 15 dollars, making it 2,5 dollar per hour, meaning a game should be at least 24 hours to match the value. And bty bringing in books you brought another argument yourself - games are not movies, just like movies are not books, and you shouldnt compare them like that.

padding happens to both short and long games. Far Cry 2 was padded as hell. the game had 3 missions that repeated over and over again, and one could easily beat that game in 4 hours. you woudl still need to do each mission at least 4 times or so though.
making a game longer without padding takes skill. it also makes game better, which is what we wanted - good games. good value for our money, not a 3 hour COD campaign. if we had a system of return if played less than 5 hours for example, this could easily make sure that games you liked you get to keep and games you dropped in an hour you get to return.
and game doesnt have to be 20 hours to beat in order to be 20 hours till you get bored. remmeber a thing called replayability. yes its still a thing.

FogHornG36:

Strazdas:
snip

why is it steams fault you bought the game on the first day without looking at reviews. Its not steams responsibility to take care of you when you make a disappointing purchase. I can understand the idea that a game doesn't work, but steam has already been giving refunds for that for years.

Its not steams fault or anyone eleses fault. It is the sellers responsibility to ensure costumer rights to have a refund on an event the object is returned. there are obvious exceptions for food and the like but all media has this policy, regulated by national law, already. If i buy a chair and i cant sit in it confortably i return it. If i buy an appliace that is too big to fit in my house i return it. if i buy a movie ticket and walk out in first 5 minutes i get a refund. games are one of the few places where refuns dont exist as a status quo. and introduction of said policies have proven that people dont actually abuse them because they keep the games they like. and no you should not be forced to keep bad games. if a company tricked you into buying a bad game the fault should fall on the company *cough* gearbox*cough*.

P.S. capcha asked me what my education was, i selected my education and it told me "Capcha error".
sadface.jpg

Strazdas:

Max payne only took 7 hours to complete but it was good enough so i played it for 50. thats what long games mean - you can enjoy it for long, not that you need to grind through campaign for long. This is why i didnt finish Empire earth campaign - it was a grind. and why i spent 400+ hours in civilization 4 - it was fun.

Apart from some snark about firs-world problems, I haven't replied to the rest of your post, because this bit is really important and we could have just misunderstood each other from the start.

In my head the best games would be 8-20 hours long (with maybe optional content that can really stretch that out if you choose, like in Fallout New Vegas or presumably the Elder Scrolls games), but are good enough that you want to replay them. What I was talking about are games which literally take 30+ hours to complete and you end up 15 hours in realising you're going to have to spend another month of your life if you want to see the story through to the end.

If we were both talking about replay value, than I absolutely don't disagree with you. If were talking about physical campaign length then I'll go back and respond to the rest of your post.

Strazdas:

Wow this went into first world problems really fast.

We're talking about videogames. Any problem you have is by definition a first world problem. I can count on the fingers of my foot the number of people who've said 'today is the worst day, the crops have been destroyed, I haven't eaten for weeks, my sister has malaria and Arkham Origins has really lazy boss battles. If you want to feel like you're talking about productive things then don't talk about videogames.

BrotherRool:
Apart from some snark about firs-world problems, I haven't replied to the rest of your post, because this bit is really important and we could have just misunderstood each other from the start.

In my head the best games would be 8-20 hours long (with maybe optional content that can really stretch that out if you choose, like in Fallout New Vegas or presumably the Elder Scrolls games), but are good enough that you want to replay them. What I was talking about are games which literally take 30+ hours to complete and you end up 15 hours in realising you're going to have to spend another month of your life if you want to see the story through to the end.

If we were both talking about replay value, than I absolutely don't disagree with you. If were talking about physical campaign length then I'll go back and respond to the rest of your post.

like i said games that take long artificially are just bad games and those are the games you are supposed to return once you realize it. Its not the campaign lenght itself that matters but how long you enjoy the game, hence why "able to return if less than 5 hours spent on the game" would work, since if the game is good you would want to spend more time on it, and why the 2 days one wont because some people can play for 20 hours in 2 days (i actually spent 24 hours on one game in last 3 days, and i wont have any time to spend on that game for next 6 days now).
Any game is optional. you dont have to finish it if you dont like the game.

We're talking about videogames. Any problem you have is by definition a first world problem.

Thats strange. and here i thought that here at 2nd and 3rd world we also had games. i guess i might have been imagining it.

Strazdas:

Any game is optional. you dont have to finish it if you dont like the game.

This is true, but it's also true that it's incredibly unsatisfying to not finish a game. If I played Final Fantasy X for the first 20 hours but stopped, then I get no satisfaction because I've missed 2/3rds of the game, on the other hand

We're talking about videogames. Any problem you have is by definition a first world problem.

Thats strange. and here i thought that here at 2nd and 3rd world we also had games. i guess i might have been imagining it.

No third-world countries don't have easy access to videogames. 79% of the third-world, 1.2 billion people, don't have access to electricity, if you think you're part of the third world, you're almost certainly wrong because I assume you're not going to a shop for your internet access right now (and even if you were that's still not really third-world).

Even in non-third world areas (say rural India), televisions are an absolute luxury and no-one will have one in their house, they'll have some cruddy TV in the village centre that people don't use.

And heck yeah is any problem about videogames a first-world problem. Being bothered that you're videogame isn't long enough is a luxury of people who don't have to worry about having no food to eat today

BrotherRool:

Strazdas:

Any game is optional. you dont have to finish it if you dont like the game.

This is true, but it's also true that it's incredibly unsatisfying to not finish a game. If I played Final Fantasy X for the first 20 hours but stopped, then I get no satisfaction because I've missed 2/3rds of the game, on the other hand

i can understand that, i had same problems myself, however if we are being brutally honest here why continue playing a game that you dont like playing? if story is the only thing - you can read that one up, walktroughs and stuff gets posted everywhere nowadays, you can even watch it on youtube now. so its the experience of playing that matters and if your not enjoying it then why keep torturing yourself?

No third-world countries don't have easy access to videogames. 79% of the third-world, 1.2 billion people, don't have access to electricity, if you think you're part of the third world, you're almost certainly wrong because I assume you're not going to a shop for your internet access right now (and even if you were that's still not really third-world).

my country - a second world country - has the best internet in the world. so not everything is centered on first world. videogames exist in third world. they arent just go and buy one every week deal, but there are videogames and there are people that play them. videogame problems arent limited to first world, and just because the problems arent as big as some others in the world does not mean they are nonexistent.
what is a first world problem is complaining that your game is too good and you want to spend too much time on it.

Strazdas:

i can understand that, i had same problems myself, however if we are being brutally honest here why continue playing a game that you dont like playing? if story is the only thing - you can read that one up, walktroughs and stuff gets posted everywhere nowadays, you can even watch it on youtube now. so its the experience of playing that matters and if your not enjoying it then why keep torturing yourself?

It's not that I didn't like playing it for the firs 1/3

Strazdas:

No third-world countries don't have easy access to videogames. 79% of the third-world, 1.2 billion people, don't have access to electricity, if you think you're part of the third world, you're almost certainly wrong because I assume you're not going to a shop for your internet access right now (and even if you were that's still not really third-world).

my country - a second world country - has the best internet in the world. so not everything is centered on first world. videogames exist in third world. they arent just go and buy one every week deal, but there are videogames and there are people that play them. videogame problems arent limited to first world, and just because the problems arent as big as some others in the world does not mean they are nonexistent.
what is a first world problem is complaining that your game is too good and you want to spend too much time on it.

As I said, I think you're severely underestimating just how much better off you are than a third-world country. Third-world countries do not have easy access to videogames. At a minimum 4/5's of the third world doesn't actually have access to any power to play the videogames on.

The second-world technically doesn't exist (it actually means the USSR and China), but what we understand as second-world is so much better off than the third-world. A billion people in the third-world can't read or write. 22,000 children die each day due to poverty. 1.1 billion people don't have access to clean water. 640 million children don't have access to a roof over their head. 121 million children can't go to school.

How can you suggest the people unable to read or write or access electricity or go to school, or even drink water without it poisoning them, can play videogames? Complaining that your unnecessary expensive source of entertainment is 'only' 5 hours long, or isn't quite fun enough whilst half a billion children don't actually have a place to live is always going to be first-world problem. If your country has access to those problems, congratulations on also being able to complain about the things you're absolutely priviledged to have.

I mean you were talking about paying $60 for a game, which means you get to spend on one item of entertainment 1/6 of the annual income of 1.3 billion people. I hope you don't mind, but I stalked your profile. You're Lithuania right? So I don't think that even counts as a second-world country. You've got a higher income per person than Poland and Russia. You're ranked as the very highest level on the Human Development Index. Your average personal income is in the highest income segment of the world.

It might be hard for you to believe, but you live in a first-world country (be economic definitions, you actually did belong to the USSR I guess, but 'first-world problems' is an economic thing). You might be amongst the poorest of the first-world countries, but your problems are first-world problems. In fact in terms of percentage of the population who are actually poor, Lithuania is the 4th least poor country in the world. There are multiple of millions more poor people in the UK, people who are unable to buy more than $1.25 of stuff a day (including food)

BrotherRool:

Strazdas:

i can understand that, i had same problems myself, however if we are being brutally honest here why continue playing a game that you dont like playing? if story is the only thing - you can read that one up, walktroughs and stuff gets posted everywhere nowadays, you can even watch it on youtube now. so its the experience of playing that matters and if your not enjoying it then why keep torturing yourself?

It's not that I didn't like playing it for the firs 1/3

then why are you stopping or complaining you got to play more of what you enjoy doing?

As I said, I think you're severely underestimating just how much better off you are than a third-world country. Third-world countries do not have easy access to videogames. At a minimum 4/5's of the third world doesn't actually have access to any power to play the videogames on.

The second-world technically doesn't exist (it actually means the USSR and China), but what we understand as second-world is so much better off than the third-world. A billion people in the third-world can't read or write. 22,000 children die each day due to poverty. 1.1 billion people don't have access to clean water. 640 million children don't have access to a roof over their head. 121 million children can't go to school.

while that is true it is not whole third world at all. nor does it have anything to do with the fact that there are people in third and second world countries playing games.

How can you suggest the people unable to read or write or access electricity or go to school, or even drink water without it poisoning them, can play videogames? Complaining that your unnecessary expensive source of entertainment is 'only' 5 hours long, or isn't quite fun enough whilst half a billion children don't actually have a place to live is always going to be first-world problem. If your country has access to those problems, congratulations on also being able to complain about the things you're absolutely priviledged to have.

now now lets not use falacy of relative privy here.

I hope you don't mind, but I stalked your profile. You're Lithuania right?

if i didnt want people to know i wouldnt have put it there.
yes im from lithuania.

So I don't think that even counts as a second-world country.

yes, it does. here is an image:
image

You've got a higher income per person than Poland and Russia.

if only that was true.....
the only countries in Europe that we are higher than are Bulgaria Rumania Ukraine and Belarus.

You're ranked as the very highest level on the Human Development Index.

indeed we made a very large step in this two years ago and we are high on it, but we are not the highest nor even in top 10.

Your average personal income is in the highest income segment of the world.

yeah, GDP per capita is not income. and GNI is slightly modified GDP (i should know, i work with GDP). real actual average income would be if you were to divide this by 2 or more. we have the lowest minimal wage in europe. We have recently raised it a bit and acording to our manfuactureres asociation that meant 60% of workforce had to be paid more. so 60% of our workforce earns 400 dollars per month (4800 per year). I am lucky to work for the government and have a job that pays 600 dollars a month.

It might be hard for you to believe, but you live in a first-world country (be economic definitions, you actually did belong to the USSR I guess, but 'first-world problems' is an economic thing). You might be amongst the poorest of the first-world countries, but your problems are first-world problems. In fact in terms of percentage of the population who are actually poor, Lithuania is the 4th least poor country in the world. There are multiple of millions more poor people in the UK, people who are unable to buy more than $1.25 of stuff a day (including food)

According to European Union 30% of our country populace is bellow poverty line. No idea how CIA count it but clearly they give my country much more leavway. millions of people should not be counted but rather percentage of population, because UK population is multiple times larger to begin with.

Strazdas:

BrotherRool:

Strazdas:

i can understand that, i had same problems myself, however if we are being brutally honest here why continue playing a game that you dont like playing? if story is the only thing - you can read that one up, walktroughs and stuff gets posted everywhere nowadays, you can even watch it on youtube now. so its the experience of playing that matters and if your not enjoying it then why keep torturing yourself?

It's not that I didn't like playing it for the firs 1/3

then why are you stopping or complaining you got to play more of what you enjoy doing?

Oops I didn't complete the first thought. EDIT: I forgot again :P I can't even remember what my thought was now. I think I don't consider the story of games to just be about the cutscenes. The story of a game like FFX is about travelling the worldand making the journey. The story of Dreamfall is about walking around and looking at these fantastic and beautiful places. The story of CoD is about making that last stand as you're surrounded by hordes of Generic Middle Eastern Stereotypes, and the story of a game like Uncharted is about clambering over and through these ruins. So just watching the cutscenes passively on youtube doesn't give me that experience. But the gameplay has got boring after spending so much time with it, and moreover it's annoying me because I'm dedicating too much of my life to a single thing which isn't very important in the face of it. So I want closure, but I can only get that closure by actually playing and experiencing the journey of the game. But it's length means I either have to forget that closure and leave the experience hanging, or force myself to play something I'm no longer enjoying.

It's even true of non-story games, look at something like Devil May Cry, where the satisfaction comes from overcoming a difficult challenge. If you don't beat the game you don't get that satisfaction, but if you've just stopped because the game was too long, you're denied that satisfaction not because the game was too hard, but because it took up too much time

while that is true it is not whole third world at all. nor does it have anything to do with the fact that there are people in third and second world countries playing games.

now now lets not use falacy of relative privy here.

Not having access to electricity is hugely relevant to people in third-world countries playing videogames. And the portion of people in the third-world without any access to electricity is 80%, which means it's physically impossible for the vast majority of people in the third-world to play games. And of that remaining 20% a lot of them have minimal access to electricity, basically the ability to charge mobile phones etc which doesn't allow people to play videogames (maybe Snake and Tetris). I've been to second-world countries(of which you're not, I'll get to this later) where people are significantly better off and they still don't have access to videogames or even TV. Videogames are not a third-world problem.

Also the first-world problems is all about relative privilege. It literally means 'you live in a country so well of that these things seems like problems, when actually they're not when compared to the rest of the world.

So I don't think that even counts as a second-world country.

yes, it does. here is an image:

So the original first-world, second-world, third-world divide was about the political allegiances during the cold war. Broadly speaking being a second-world country in this sense means you're country is allied with communism. During the end of the 20th century, under this definition, Lithuania is a second-world country. Note that being 'third-world' wasn't about economic development, it just meant the country had no political allegiance (although this co-incided with a lot of poor countries, because they were too poor to have an influence on the war)

However the first-world problems meme is not related to that definition at all. A first-world problem isn't 'something that people in Russia or China don't experience'. It uses the modern definition of first-world as "high-income industrial countries." and it basically means 'these are problems that only occur in rich countries' A third-world country is a place of low-economic development and a second-world country is a growing economy.

If you look at the Human Development Index here, a third-world country is ranked 'low', a first world country is ranked 'very high' (Lithuania is very high) and a second world country is medium to high.

If you don't believe me that your map is no longer correct, notice that it ranks Brazil and Argentina as 'third-world' countries. Brazil, Mexico and Argentina are definitely not third-world countries anymore.

You've got a higher income per person than Poland and Russia.

if only that was true.....
the only countries in Europe that we are higher than are Bulgaria Rumania Ukraine and Belarus.

It's true of GDP and GNI

Straight personal income is harder to calculate and more out of date, but if you check out the [Url=http://en.classora.com/reports/s30614/ranking-of-countries-with-highest-per-capita-income]list[/url] Lithuania had an average personal income of 14,097 compared to Russia's 14,037 and Poland's 12,708

I guess if you have a low minimum wage this is being skewed by a small amount of people in your country earning a lot above minimum wage

According to European Union 30% of our country populace is bellow poverty line. No idea how CIA count it but clearly they give my country much more leavway. millions of people should not be counted but rather percentage of population, because UK population is multiple times larger to begin with.

Oh it seems like the CIA was actual using national poverty lines which is a useless stat, sorry about that. In terms of the global poverty line ($1.25 a day), Lithuania has 0.16% if its population below it. This is less than countries like Brazil, Argentina, India, Mexico which I would consider to be economic second-world countries and a lot lot less than the third-world countries

I solve my preorder problems by hardly ever preordering games and, unless it's the rare title or two per year I must have at launch, I don't pay more than $20 for a game, usually less than $10.

I do remember the good/bad old days of being able to return boxed games for exchange, and while it was amusing and convenient I knew the stores couldn't keep that up, as the system was simply too easy to abuse.

The few games I do preorder I try to do so through Amazon, as they've got a very easy cancellation policy. I've even had several preorder bonuses that still applied to my account when I changed my mind and cancelled.

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