Yeah, but that's not true.
Many go after both, again, via legal repricussions.
And most all refuse to service anything they can tell were bought in grey markets - this is pretty much done across every single industry. Since Steam, as a whole, is a service, you can look at Valve as doing it that way - refusing to service grey market purchases.
This is actually about forcing a price for this region, being an extremely wealthy nation means that if they can force North American users to only buy from Steam or major retailers they can effectively control the price for this product. (forcing a high price point like $60)
This isn't about unused licenses though, if you went to Walmart and bought the game, then sold it to someone else without ever using it, that code would work fine.
This is about licenses sold under specific conditions being used outside of that. Licenses sold for either business use like a cafe or for cheaper, lower income nations. Licenses with specific areas of use which then show up being uses by Joe Schmoe in the USA.
It's not just the technology that allows it, its the classification of the game as a license you purchase to play the game, not the game itself. That gives them a ton of legal leeway. Court cases to challenge this idea have come up and sometimes they side with the consumer and sometimes they don't... until the inevitable day when the idea is directly challenged no one can really say what their future legal boundries will be.
Right now though you buy a license to play the game, and if you buy the license from someone not authorized to sell it to you, well, you paid a lot for nothing.
You can't email a statue, or a car, or a lounge chair. You're being ignorant here, either purposely or legitimately. You can email a game, it is just a keycode and a license in this case. His entire point, which I fully agree with, is that in the Internet age and with the game being just a license which the key unlocks, you have the option of local pricing in countries with lower cost of living and enforcing region restrictions or you can charge everyone the same price and then completely shaft the people in those lower income countries so they can't buy the game at all.
The internet makes us feel like we are one world, one people, the choirs singing, but we're not... there are fundemental economic differences which force regional pricing. People can't seem to grasp this idea, but it is very true. This regional pricing therefore results in the need to enforce that pricing.
This is the crux of the problem; if it's one person that travels over there, spending $500 on airfare to save $10 on a game, then it's not a big deal. In the internet age, though, one person there can quite easily buy 10,000 copies and re-sell them to individuals in the US, then it becomes a major problem. It's the problem of having a digital good - there's zero transportation cost involved in selling across borders
Look, there's really only two possibilities here - either
1) The game is sold at the exact same price globally, at a price point which maximizes the revenue for the company (which basically means the US/Euro price), which means the price is vastly out of proportion to income in developing areas (which then means that they'll sell basically zero non-pirated copies in those areas)
2) The game is sold at a cost somewhat relative to (a) the wealth of that country, such that it's actually reasonable to ask people in developing countries to legally purchase it, which requires some sort of control on the good to restrict it to that region, and (b) the nature of the organization purchasing it, such that a cyber cafe / whatever can be encouraged to legally purchase a number of licenses instead of pirating the game, which also requires controlling the ability of those licenses to be spread outside that industry
To go back to someone else's example - it's the exact same situation as Microsoft selling corporate windows licenses. It makes perfect sense to sell one giant corporate license to a company, both for cost and for ease of use (not having to keep tract of tens of thousands of windows licenses), but if companies start reselling them it would destroy the value of the individual licenses
Now, if you want to argue that Valve should pro-actively create different types of key #'s, such that it's obvious that they're region restricted / etc, I might not disagree with you... but again, it's probably the case that Valve really doesn't generally want to bother with this (as long as it doesn't become a major problem), and it's only when they start seeing a fairly large # of people taking advantage of the loophole that they need to take action
I've purchased most of the AAA 360 titles over the past couple years, and I don't think I've paid less than 25% off the entire time. If you don't think a game has $60 worth of value to you, if you wait 3 months you can easily get it for $40 (and probably less), without resorting to buying from questionable sources or importing Chinese versions or whatever.
The problem is that most gamers want to have both - they want to not pay full price (generously), but they also NEED to have it the week that it comes out.
Everyone supports consumer rights to a point, but there is a level upon which you are blindly siding with ignorant consumers in a fight they should lose. At the end of the day it is very clear that these key shops are not legit, are treated as such on Steam, and the people who bought it took a chance to save a few bucks. They lost, and I have no pity for them, end of story.
The free market works because companies make things people want and are willing to pay for. Trying to save money at all costs, like buying used games or importing from countries with much lower standards of living is trying to go around the system, not helping the system.
It's not a hard concept... game developer makes game, game publisher sells game, consumer buys game if he considers it worth the money. If he doesn't, he waits, or never buys it at all. All the talk of piracy, used sales, resellers and such is just bullshit cheap-ass crap from people who want to save a buck at all cost, period. If you like games, support developers and publishers.
This I agree with, no other industry than PC gaming treats its customers to such high level restrictions. I assume this is directly related to the insane level of whining, thieving and sense of entitlement PC gamers tend to display. I say that as a life-long PC gamer who has never pirated anything you can buy. I go to a lot of forums and read a lot of news comments and the average PC gamer seems to be a pissy little brat who also happens to be old and stuck in his ways who thinks all payments for products should be under the honor system.
Yea, hackers, people who stole credit card numbers, people who had their accounts hacked bc they told someone their password.
All their own fault.
When you install the game - it most certainly DOES say that. You know that part where you just click NEXT 4-5 times? Yeah, it was right there.
I have NEVER heard of an accord where someone buys a "Steam" game and gets banned.....I think you are confused.
If you buy from Steam - that is your license.
Simple...if it looks too good to be true, it probably is. You are not going to get a game that costs $50+ for $10 or whatever. End of story.
I support Valve's right to restrict access to their service for customers who haven't actually paid for it. This is MW2, a game not developed by Valve, published by Activation, so if a 3rd party doesn't want to support the game through their service when it wasn't purchased through thier service...isn't that their perogative?
But I think they're missing a golden opportunity here to allow these people to pay the additional cost to upgrade to a fully legitimate copy of the game.
I do not defend publishers no matter what and can point to endless times I have not, but what I will say I do is care about the industry and its success, for a myriad of reasons, the most common sense of which is I like great games and want to see more of them made, especially on PC.
Yes. The publisher sets a price in a region for the product they invested in and the developer created. If the game is not worth that price, move on, buy it later or don't buy it. Saying the game is worth getting but then going to endless means to give as little compensation for the product you are about to enjoy to those who created it is being a cheap ass, you're damn right.
They sell a restricted license and when it is found to have been used in a way not licensed, they revoke it. Seems pretty simple to me. If you buy an unauthorized key to a license that is not allowed to be sold to you in the internet equivalent to a back alley it's your fault if it ends up not working out very well.
The simple fact of the matter is that a lot of people will go to endless means to get the cheapest price possible and screw the developers and publisher. I don't really feel sorry for these people, at all.
If you are surfing reseller sites to try and get MW2 on release week for half-price, you deserve to be treated like the cheap-ass you are. End of story.
There's some guy outside with a trench coat and Rolexes saying, "Psst - wanna buy a watch?" You can buy one if you want. You can even pretend they're real. If you really believe they're real, though, you're a fool.
I've also seen (J), but I'm not sure what that means.
No, they're keys that were sold in bulk for use on cyber cafe LANs. They aren't licensed for use in home PCs, therefore Valve were in their right to bin them.
It's like trying to activate Windows XP with the devils0wn FCKGW key...
When you buy a game, it specifically mentions that it's for personal use and not to be resold or used for commercial interests etc.