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Valve is not your friend


#41

Hmm maybe... But then what's to stop this "better" service or company from just rinsing and repeating... And becoming just as, if not even worse....

The only real issue I see here, is that of pure market share... If someone managed to grab hold of a sizable enough chunk of valves, thereby increasing competition then valve would be once again forced to fight for its customer base again... Then the consumer would win...

Just a replacement (however gradual) would just leave the consumer, us, right back where we started...


#42

I think that if Valve were to release a certain game with a 3 in the name, I'd find a way to place them on my friends list.


#43

Gaben has not just revolutionized the PC gaming market, he also has become one of the greatest memes.


#44

???

So you are just attempting to antagonize me?

Ad hominem, I'm not going to dignify that with a response. If you can ask for supporting evidence without personally attacking me, maybe I'll acknowledge your request. I was too lazy to invest the time into presenting more evidence in my last post (finding a detailed enough version of the region-locking story took long enough) and I'm not compelled to satisfy someone that resorts to ad hominem attacks.

Also, did you read the article?

You should read it, since it is the launching point for this thread. It does bring up points that merit further investigation and critical thinking. The author clearly states their position on the matter, though perhaps a bit too heavy-handedly at times.

That's not exactly 1/3, but it's pretty close.

While I think that is an unethical practice (especially if you enjoyed the game) there has to be another way to go about this that doesn't punish everyone for a few bad apples.

What's with the yelling? There's no need to yell. And are the most popular and critically acclaimed games available elsewhere besides Steam? Because if they're not, you don't have an alternative to Steam if you want to be able to talk to your friends about the newest hit game the community is enjoying (particularly if they're indie games). FOMO is a powerful force.


#45

a) If you hadn't taken my comments out of context, it would have been obvious that my yelling was in response to a long series of meandering rants from another contributor, who desperately needed a reality check and whose attention I, therefore, sought to attract.

b) FOMO is for insecure adolescents and is largely irrelevant. Adults do not base their self worth as a member of society, based on which game the in-crowd are, or are not playing. And frankly, I don't give a damn about the most popular and critically acclaimed games, if they are only available for the Windows platform. If there ever was an evil empire, surely it's name is Microsoft! Windows and all who sails on her is dead to me.


#46

Out of context? I quoted your entire post. There is almost never a need for yelling.

That is an overtly broad generalization. Anyone can be affected by FoMO, and the remark on Microsoft is a straw man.


#47

Impressive word!

Thanks for thinking about doing it! I appreciate the possibility of you granting us your time.

Don't put yourself down! You can do it!

I don't read trash! No need to give them a click.

That's an interesting article by the way. So it's basically about reselling digital content among other things. I'd be all for that however I wouldn't begin to fathom how that would work...reselling a digital copy of a game. It would be nice to own something for a change. Sadly, I think first sale doctrine will never happen for digital content.


#48

I know many places that won't accept returns on open games, but some places (i.e. Walmart) will accept pretty much anything in return without caring. For the places that don't accept refunds on open games it really isn't nice to the people who legitimately don't like a game. I'd be pretty miffed if I bought a $60 game or whatever and it turns out it was a load of crap and I couldn't return it.

On second thought, it could be implemented through requiring an account or store membership or something. If something like that was required it would be easy to limit returns to only a certain number within a period by tying it to the account in some manner, either through payment card or ID or whatever. That way the habitual "renters" are limited in how many times they do their thing, but it would still allow people who truly don't like the games to return them.

I think Steam could implement a resale system for used games, but I think it would probably have to be limited to games that were originally purchased on Steam. That way it would cut out most grey market keys. Or maybe make it an opt-in system for the developer/publisher to allow their games to be traded. I just fear if all games were available to be traded regardless of source it would really only promote G2G style shenanigans where some of the games were acquired through illicit means and then sold for a profit. May even lower the value of games as a whole since nobody would buy a new game when they could just get a secondhand copy, that's bit for bit new, for cheap.

Just my thinking though.


#49

In a thread focused on Valve being an evil, monopolistic and antisocial company, I submit that the comment about Microsoft is entirely relevant. Seriously, am I the only one who sees the irony, if not outright absurdity in going out of one's way to avoid Valve, only to play our games on a platform from a company which literally wrote the book on being evil, monopolistic and antisocial? Seriously? Don't be obtuse.

Listen, I don't care where you get your game on, whether it be directly from the publisher, the Humble Bundle, GOG, a retail store, an Indie dev's GitHub page, or from some other source; but let's at least have some intellectual consistency. Steam may not be perfect, but they look like a bunch of Girl Scouts, compared to Microsoft. All I'm saying is, perhaps we should reevaluate our priorities, as there are much more pressing concerns when it comes to the subject of companies respecting their customers wishes, privacy and just generally treating them as a valued customer. When a business, or agency actually does enjoy a monopoly, such as Microsoft, Comcast, or the IRS, what the customer wants is irrelevant. Customer service? Irrelevant. Respect? Irrelevant. Options? Irrelevant.


#50

This entire discussion is framed on a false premise. Valve isn't a monopoly. I agree that even companies with (keyword: relatively) good public practices and consumer goodwill should be looked at critically, but this piece uses thinly veiled outrage mongering combined with rhetoric you could peruse on any run of the mill socialism-focused tumblr page.

The article adds very little of value to the ongoing discussion on anti-consumer practices in the games industry, and is engineered (rather ham-fistedly, might I add) to generate shares on the anger of those who disagree with the headline.

Please share an archived version of the link, so that the unscrupulous person that authored it will not make more money off of the backs of the people here. I took the liberty of archiving it for you:

http://archive.is/D9dTo


#51

ok sure valve and steam has negative aspects which make them not your friend, but i rather have them then not have them. their positives make them worth existing imo. their push for linux gaming alone is worth me supporting them with my dollar despite the complete and utter shit that is their customer support and their ban policy of banning in waves so the hackers get a few months of cheating out of their purchase so they go buy another copy of the game. if games everywhere just support linux out of the box someday, steam will be in the history books as the start of the movement.


#52

The first sentence of the article should sum it up:

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, and should not be attributed to, Polygon as an organization.


Also that ↑

Like Susan G. Komen turned out to be a fairly bad "non-profit". They did/do further breast cancer research, but as a supposed non-profit organization they made quite a few bad moves.


#53

Don't read trash or just don't like opinions differing from your own?

Stores used to offer store credit. However, if you no longer wanted to give that store your business, you were fucked. They still had your money.


#54

I've never had a bad experience with Steam Their new-ish return policy is also awesome. The amount of data they get out of me is irrelevant. I happily participate in hardware survey and don't really care they keep track of what I play or do on the platform I don't really consider any of it very personal. plus they have nice sales. Only gripe is DRM but even that isn't a huge deal as most games can be played offline.


#55

in general, can we not turn this thread into a pissing match, please.


#56

Benevolent dictator is both the best and worst form of government/monopoly.


#57

lol nice try, breh. Very edgy.


Valve really did a great job when it comes to a digital offering for games. Of course it's not perfect but it's a relatively new way to get games. Things will change over time. Competition has popped up since Steam came into the picture.

Returns have been a major topic in this thread. At the end of the day, Valve has to find a way to please consumers, AAA publishers and even indie devs to some extent. Some indie devs. want more restrictions on returns, believe it or not.

I have never been allowed to return a game to a store at any point in my life. EB games, Gamestop, Wal-Mart, Target, Best Buy, you name it. If the plastic packing was open the return was no bueno. Back in 2000, before Steam, I went to a game store called "Planet-X" which eventually was replaced with Gamestop. I was 13 back then and managed to buy Soldier of Fortune without an adult with me. When my grandparents saw me playing the game on their computer they marched me back to the store and demanded a refund. Never happened.

When returns with stipulations popped up on Steam I was shocked and excited. I got my money back for No Man's Sky with absolutely no issue or arguing at a customer service desk.

Question for those of you lurking this thread: Before steam started doing returns, how successful were you at returning a game at a store? If you had success, was it easy or require some difficulty? I'd be interested to hear your experiences.

Here is a nice quote from an article on Gamasutra from a while back regarding some dev's thoughts on steam returns:

"They can potentially be 'sorta-free' [the dev's game], if you're inclined to think of them that way." says Tringali. "I wouldn't consider Sun Dogs a 'fun' game in the traditional sense, and I think the majority of people expect games to conform to their standards of fun. I get the sense that a lot of those people don't see the value in paying for a different experience, usually a short and experiential one. This puts some of them in a moral gray area for refunds." - Tringali, Dev of Sun Dogs


"The vast majority of refunds are not related to technical issue, system requirements, etc," says Oldblood. "They're simply people not being happy with their purchase after playing at least a portion of the game. The "Not fun" category alone makes up a little over 50% of refunds."
- Oldblood, dev of Masochisia


Last but not least, Steam really opened the door to more varieties of games for me. The merits of Greenlight could be debated here too but ultimately, while much of it is trash, at least I have that variety open to me. Now I can find most of these indie games on other platforms but that wasn't the norm until the past few years.

While many of us in the thread lean on legal proceedings and individual issues in specific countries regarding Steam, as a whole it's been a positive experience. I consider Valve my 'friend' because things have only gotten better since they forced us to use it to get HL2...and I hated the idea of having Steam back then.


#58

steam in itself is a drm/spyware implementation while you don't have to even play games. It scans your registry for titles that were ever installed, it also crawls through your folders for whatever reasons not specified. But wait, they are not interested in your porn.

Steam is evil, always was, no1 ever needed it. Only evil corps. PC marked was doing just fine...


#59

Fake news! That which can be asserted without evidence, can be dismissed without evidence. :pray:


#60

not that one needs evidence since Valve themselves responded to accusations that they are not interested in your porn. A brief research - and couple of searches would bring you up with knowledge.

but if you really want evidence, this is one of the VAC dll's reverse engineered showing it checks your local dns cache and sends it back to valve. So whatever you browse gets sent to valve. This is one of many.