Left 4 Dead 4 Free (Clearly Not)

Typos for our amusement.

Evo Gamer have spotted that Valve are currently listing Left 4 Dead as “Available Nov 2008” and, more peculiarly, “free” on Steam. It’s obviously a mistake, since the RRP for the game is £35. But it’s a nice mistake. The sort of mistake we’d love to see hang around. Until, say, December. Meanwhile, check out L4D’s Steam page. Cheers Chris.

41 Comments

  1. Matt says:

    SSEEPPPTTEEMMMBEEERRRR!!!!!

  2. Nimic says:

    For some strange reason I often get the urge to pre-order Left 4 Dead, even though that makes no sense since I’m just about guaranteed to get it the minute it’s released on Steam. I guess I just want to feel that little bit closer to actually owning the game.

  3. Legandir says:

    The same happened with Stalker: Clear Sky. It was listed as free for a long time. Its been changed since then. Its blank under price now

  4. MetalCircus says:

    Oh shi- someone mentioned Stalker.

    I want to play Clear sky. I completed Stalker again like 2 weeks ago, and I already want to reinstall it and play it all over again. What a bloody fantastic game.

  5. Alex says:

    £35? Do you guys really pay ten pounds in taxes, or are they bringing in a fatter margin because they can?

  6. Sum0 says:

    @Alex: Welcome to the exciting world of British pricing, where nothing makes sense. £10 more than the exchange rate price? Live with it! $300 console=£300 console? Uh, marketing and shipping costs!

  7. RichPowers says:

    $66 dollars for a new PC game!? Christ!

  8. Premium User Badge

    John Walker says:

    Oh, the fun we could have showing you Americans how much stuff costs. (I mentioned the $13/gallon for gas thing last week). Can of soda: $1.50. Train from Bath to London (1.5 hours): $90…

  9. James T says:

    …It costs just shy of 20 bucks to take a train that far in Australia. Jesus.

  10. Fumarole says:

    Trains? I think I saw one in TF2.

  11. MeestaNob! says:

    TF2 at retail in Australia is $50 AUD. $50! Orange Box is $90.

    Everybody stop whining now.

    (Needless to say, I bought Orange Box through Steam. No box is worth $50.)

  12. Zaph says:

    Games are really expensive in Norway as well, console games are generally around $100(!).
    Needless to say, Steam saves me a bunch of money.
    Yay for the american dollar!
    Anyway! Left 4 Dead is one the many excellent games that are contributing to the death of my wallet at the end of the year.

  13. A-Scale says:

    “Oh, the fun we could have showing you Americans how much stuff costs. (I mentioned the $13/gallon for gas thing last week). Can of soda: $1.50. Train from Bath to London (1.5 hours): $90…”

    Quit yer bitchin, you Brits make proportionally more than Americans do in order to adjust for the differences. It’s not like you have to take out a loan on your house to buy basic amenities. I also found on my trip to London earlier this summer that things there cost exactly the same as they would have in Detroit, Michigan, only in pounds instead of dollars.

  14. Y3k-Bug says:

    @Nimic
    Usually with their marquee titles, they’ll give you 10% off if you pre order, so yay!

  15. malkav11 says:

    Yeah, to make those sorts of comparisons you also need to do an exchange rate calculation on salaries. If I worked full time at my current salary I’d make ~$28,200 a year. I have a pretty basic government clerical position in a city with a middling cost of living. Would someone working a similar job in Britain make the exchange-rate salary of ~14,900 pounds? I sure hope not.

  16. Smee says:

    The British also catch a break on university fees and health care, so that helps.

  17. John P (Katsumoto) says:

    Its worth pointing out that whilst the RRP is 35 quid, you will rarely actually buy a game for that price (a PC game, anyway). The big games will cost that much in the high street for the first week or two, but online you can get virtually all new PC games for c.25 quid, which is a bit better.

    Console games are still fucked though. 40 quid. FORTY!

  18. The Sombrero Kid says:

    @Smee
    no we don’t, we pay for them in taxes,

    @malkav11
    as for the relative incomes, that’s more to do with the rich-poor gap in America being a chasm.

    EDIT oh and try £10,000

    you can’t just say stop you’re bitching you don’t need health insurance or something that’s nothing to do with what’s going on here it’s an American company doubling it’s prices abroad to float the American economy which is not a bad thing at least economically but we’re obliged to take offence to this behaviour to encourage a competitive market, right now it has borderline cartel behaviour, were all the big American publishers agree on exactly how much to fuck over other markets and without preasure from those markets to treat us fairly they’ll have no reason to compete with each other.

  19. Premium User Badge

    John Walker says:

    The problem is, many things in the UK cost three times more than in the US, while salaries aren’t much higher. So eating out, for instance, or using public transport, are so astonishingly more expensive. I travelled 1.5 hours on train in SF recently for £2.50. So that would make it 1800% more expensive in the UK… Even New York (NJT rather than Amtrak, admittedly) for Penn to Trenton (1.5 hours) is only $12.50, or about £7 – a saving of 640%.

    It means things like going out to eat in a regular restaurant, or using public transport, need to be carefully budgeted for.

  20. MetalCircus says:

    It’s going to get worse too.

    One bus journey in London is two pound, so even if you wanted to get on for one stop only, you still have to pay. I remember when i was a kid and it cost a mere 40 pence. *sigh*

  21. Paul Moloney says:

    ‘Til Left4Dead comes out, I’ll make do with Zombie Panic: Source. The latest version is quite good indeed and always good for a laugh.

    Oh, and if you think things are expensive, try Ireland! At least houses will be cheap(er) here in a few years…

    P.

  22. Alex says:

    Don’t forget the congestion charge!

    Plus the housing market slump, which got everyone in a tizzy, though I don’t have quite the same respect for that. “Oh no! We shouldn’t move home this year!”

  23. Hypocee says:

    I’d like to express my thanks, BTW, for putting that (Clearly Not) in the title of the post. It is obvious, but most of the other blogs I can think of would have deliberately left it out to encourage more pageviews – people hoping for a promo, illtrt idoits not reading the article and confusing things in the comments…just another little example of RPS’ respect for its news. Thanks for keeping it up.

  24. Dolphan says:

    Ireland does have phenomenally high prices, the only place I’ve been where stuff clearly cost more than in Britain, especially in Dublin (and as far as I could tell from reading up, salaries aren’t noticeably higher).

    Malkav, about 15000 sounds right for a basic clerical position outside of London (add on a few thousand for in London, but only London, not any other big city). Administrative assistant positions tend to start at around 10-12 grand according to the civil service job adverts. And since we’re (presumably) talking before tax, there is a bite to be taken out of that for healthcare, pension, etc.

  25. El Stevo says:

    MetalCircus:

    That’s if you don’t have an Oyster, which would make it 90p. And you could use that 90p to go from one side of London to the other! (Although you wouldn’t want to unless you were really desperate, as it would take many, many hellish hours.)

    And there is always the £20 note trick: give them a £20 note and say it’s all you have, and they’ll let you on for free after a bit of a grumble as they don’t carry enough change. Sometimes they’ll give you a receipt thing saying you have to pay up later, which you can safely ‘misplace’.

    This can backfire though. I tried it once and ended up with 18 pound coins.

  26. Adam says:

    The team of four Survivors may be comprised of 1 to 4 human players, allowing for single player and multiplayer co-op games.

    Ooh! Single player co-op!

  27. A-Scale says:

    The problem is, many things in the UK cost three times more than in the US, while salaries aren’t much higher. So eating out, for instance, or using public transport, are so astonishingly more expensive. I travelled 1.5 hours on train in SF recently for £2.50. So that would make it 1800% more expensive in the UK… Even New York (NJT rather than Amtrak, admittedly) for Penn to Trenton (1.5 hours) is only $12.50, or about £7 – a saving of 640%.

    (EDIT)Your transport is A GOVERNMENT INSTITUTED MONOPOLY. If you have an issue with the pricing there, take it up with them. That has precious little to do with economic differences between the countries, and plenty to do with a non-competitive industry resting on its laurels, because many Londoners rely on their transit system and could not do without it, even if a single ticket rose 1000% overnight.

    It means things like going out to eat in a regular restaurant, or using public transport, need to be carefully budgeted for.

    I found that eating out in London was reasonable, considering the differences between the dollar and pound. I also don’t think its fair to give the impression that Brits don’t make more to make up for these differences. As I said, your products seemed to cost the same amount as they did in the US, only in pounds instead of dollars. To accompany that, the minimum wage for people over 22 in the UK is 5.50 quid, aka $11 US. In the US, the minimum wage is near 6 dollars, just about half of the UK minimum. Seems pretty fair to me.

    you can’t just say stop you’re bitching you don’t need health insurance or something that’s nothing to do with what’s going on here it’s an American company doubling it’s prices abroad to float the American economy which is not a bad thing at least economically but we’re obliged to take offence to this behaviour to encourage a competitive market, right now it has borderline cartel behaviour, were all the big American publishers agree on exactly how much to fuck over other markets and without preasure from those markets to treat us fairly they’ll have no reason to compete with each other.

    You’re saying that Valve is pricing L4D in order to keep the US economy afloat? What? What exactly is meant by “borderline cartel”? What series of producers is colluding to raise prices? Valve is welcome to price their products how they choose, and you are free to buy it or not at that given price.

  28. CrashT says:

    The transport systems in the UK haven’t been government run for years. We’ve got different firms owning the stations, the track and the trains, all seemingly doing a great job of taking more money and doing very little with it.

  29. A-Scale says:

    If you like paying a ton, breathing air so dirty that your snot turns black after one day of riding it from one of the outer zones to the inner city, and riding in rickety refurbished cars that were modern technology probably 10 years ago, then yeah, they’re doing a heck of a job.

  30. Noc says:

    A-Scale, you can’t make a comparison like that based on minimum wage. It’s tremendously difficult to live how most people would consider “comfortably” on a job that pays U.S minimum wage, and, in fact, the minimum wage has been lagging behind the rate of inflation for a while now. I’m not sure what the state of the minimum wage in the UK is, but without presenting a comparison of trends in minimum wage reform and inflation across both countries you can’t really make this kind of assertation.

    Also, I don’t quite follow this:

    Your transport is A GOVERNMENT INSTITUTED MONOPOLY.

    The transport systems in the UK haven’t been government run for years. We’ve got different firms owning the stations, the track, and the trains…

    Well it still sucks!

  31. A-Scale says:

    A-Scale, you can’t make a comparison like that based on minimum wage. It’s tremendously difficult to live how most people would consider “comfortably” on a job that pays U.S minimum wage, and, in fact, the minimum wage has been lagging behind the rate of inflation for a while now. I’m not sure what the state of the minimum wage in the UK is, but without presenting a comparison of trends in minimum wage reform and inflation across both countries you can’t really make this kind of assertation.

    What import do trends have? I’m speaking of the prices right now. It is certainly nearly impossible to live on minimum wage in the US, but it does set the very lowest baseline that someone can be paid, and as such gives us an idea of what people on the bottom of the system are earning.

    As to the transport system, government instituted monopoly does not equal government run. You have no choice of provider if you are going from your local station to another. If you do not own a car, you have no recourse but to walk or bike, which depending on your distance from your workplace may be unfeasible. They have you over a barrel.

    And for the record, it does suck.

  32. help dog says:

    London is a special case (partly because they’re trying to make an integrated system, partly because tourists will pay anything). In many situations you do have a choice of several different public transport systems. My home town has three local bus companies (plus taxis of course) and you can get to London by train or two coach companies. The monopolies that exist are usually natural monopolies, e.g. it would be insane to have two separate rail lines on the same route.

    I’m just trying to correct some misunderstandings here, the fundamental point that British public transport is shockingly and unjustifiably expensive is unarguable. This is why instead of going out and using it I intend to play L4D a lot.

  33. Noc says:

    Well, the importance of trends is that they determine what relation the minimum wage has to the rest of the economy. You don’t know if it’s a decent indicator of what people are earning, or if it’s an artifact of earlier years that has yet to catch up to the present state of the economy.

    For instance, a better indicator of how wage levels compare to prices would be the median hourly wage instead of the government mandated minimum.

    A quick Google points me to here, which gives the figure for the United States as $15.10. On the other hand, similar figures for the UK (found here) put the value at £11.12, or $21. So the Pound is worth twice as much, and prices are twice as high, but the average citizen is only earning about a third more. This would seem to support what these other folks are saying.

  34. Dolphan says:

    Obviously the following isn’t an across the board comparison, but as an indicator, here are some recent figures on universitygraduate starting salaries: UK – link to prospects.ac.uk
    US – link to admissionsync.com

    You can’t compare directly without knowing the proportions of grads in different fields, but new UK grads (and new graduates are the group bang in the middle of the earnings demographics) are clearly not earning twice as much as their US equivalents.

  35. A-Scale says:

    Prices are 2x as high, in London. The rest of the UK doesn’t pay such exorbitant fees on goods. It is a truly unfair comparison to compare prices in London, where wages and prices are higher, to the rest of the UK, where there are many rural communities in which neither prices nor wages are nearly as high. It is also an unfair comparison to pit the entire, massive US against the UK. It would be much more accurate to compare London prices and wages against NYC prices and wages. My data also shows that the average hourly wage in London is 17 quid, not 11.
    link to gmb.org.uk

  36. Noc says:

    You want to look at the MEDIAN wage, instead of the average (Mean). The reason being, people who make a lot of money tend to make a LOT of money, which pulls the average up disproportionately to the amount of people involved. For instance, with the US numbers I mentioned, the mean hourly wage was $19.56, which is almost 30% higher than the median.

    But numbers for New York go as follows (source) $17.53 median hourly, with $22.89 mean hourly. That’s gives us a median that’s 76% of the mean, so if we apply a similar model to London’s numbers, we get a median hourly wage of £13.

    Which is $24.57, which is (again) only 140% of it’s American counterpart, despite a 200% ratio of prices.

    Even if we dispense with the conversion to Median values, which is admittedly based on something of a vague assumption, we still have a comparison of $34 (£17) in London to $23 (New York), which gives us the same result.

    Which tells us that, even in the city, people in the UK are making proportionately less than Americans in regards to local prices.

  37. CrashT says:

    On no other gaming sites anywhere is this conversation taking place, or ever liable to take place.

    I love coming here.

  38. A-Scale says:

    The median wage isn’t more useful than the mean. What would be more accurate is shaving the top and bottom 15% off of the total wages, and comparing those. Unfortunately, getting that data would be very difficult. US economists calculate something called the CPI (Consumer Price Index) which gives an idea of how much it costs to live at a given time in a given area. If Brit economists did the same, that might prove more accurate. You have also neglected to factor in, as many people have suggested that you Brits do not pay for health insurance, and many (most?) Londoners don’t own cars, so they do not pay car insurance either.

    I think that we can come to some mutually agreeable conclusions. Things cost more in London, and Londoners make more than people in most other cities to make up for it, though perhaps not quite enough to even things out. It is however completely illegitimate to wow people with the costs of things in London when it is only relevant in relation to how much one makes in relation to the cost of goods in that region.

  39. GeorgeR says:

    Actually one of the companies actually doing this as of late has been nintendo.

    They’ve been taking advantage of he strong Euro and Pound as compared to the US dollar and shipping more Wii Fit, etc to other areas. Simply because in the states it sells for less, AND the dollar is lower, so it’s simple economics.

    However this shhould be about Left 4 dead, and how awesome it is going to be. The answer?

    >

    <
    That much.

  40. malkav11 says:

    I will say that it does seem like cost of living in Britain, and particularly London is higher than, say, in many parts of Europe. But again, it’s not really fair to go “omigod, I’m paying twice as much in real economic terms for this product” and get cranky about it when you’re not properly taking into account the higher real economic value of your income.

    Where it becomes a pain in the ass (or a nice bonus, depending) is when you’re actually spending money via exchange rate. I tried not to buy much in Germany when I was there, because the prices in Euro were number-equivalent with the sorts of prices I’d see in dollars in the US….but of course, the Euro was worth ~1.25-1.30 dollars at the time.

  41. A-Scale says:

    Where it becomes a pain in the ass (or a nice bonus, depending) is when you’re actually spending money via exchange rate. I tried not to buy much in Germany when I was there, because the prices in Euro were number-equivalent with the sorts of prices I’d see in dollars in the US….but of course, the Euro was worth ~1.25-1.30 dollars at the time.

    It was real hell as an American in London. Lunch for two at Pret a Manger ran about 15 quid. Not too bad, until you realize that’s 30 dollars US for two sandwiches, a bag of chips and two drinks.