L4D2 Access Denied To Brits Until Friday

Scenes outside British game shops this morning.

There’s been some confusion regarding the UK digital release of Left 4 Dead 2. It seems that those Brits who pre-ordered the game found it unlocked at 5am Tuesday (Valve time) as expected. However, anyone who’s bought it from Steam since has discovered it won’t unlock for them until Friday. Which seemed strange, since the game was announced for a worldwide digital release, the retail dates separate. We contacted Valve to find out why this happening, and it seems to be about the UK being at the back of the queue for retail copies.

Valve’s Doug Lombardi says,

“Demand for the game has lead us to release it worldwide, except in the UK where copies are still arriving. We plan to have everyone in the UK playing by Friday morning. Those who pre-ordered the game via Steam in the UK before the worldwide launch have been given access to the game.”

Generally the retail outlets get more than a little sniffy if they’re unable to sell a game before it’s available to buy online. And since games have tended to come out on a Friday in Britain, and a Tuesday in the US, this has previously led to similar issues. But it seems an enormous shame that a game by a company that owns their own digital distribution platform should be affected by the same arcane rules. It does seem from Valve’s reply that the UK pre-orders getting access Tuesday was something of a compromise itself. But we’d really prefer to see worldwide access to a game including our own little island, with retail getting their copies in time to stop us getting bumped to the back of the line.

It’s worth being annoyed by, because the game’s so damned good, as the rest of the UK will find out at the end of this week. See our review and listen to the special podcast for details of why L4D2 is such a fantastic time.

Meanwhile, those upset that the original four characters didn’t return should get a kick out of the latest Chainsaw Suit.

82 Comments

  1. Arsewisely says:

    Very polite of Valve to comply. I don’t understand what cards the retailers would have to play – it would be daft for any of them to refuse to sell Valve games.

    • Y3k-Bug says:

      Remember, L4D is also a console game; it would be odd to let PC players in the UK play the game before their console brethren can. So they wait until retail outlets can sell the physical copies, and then Valve can sell te digital equivalent.

    • Y3k-Bug says:

      By the way, if you’re in the UK and you wanna play now:

      Ask a friend who has access to play the game now for their Steam login credentials. Obviously this has to be someone you trust, and vice versa.

      Login with their credentials, and decrypt the local files.

      Now login with your credentials, but don’t execute the game from the Steam games list; go into the folder where the game is kept and click on the .exe manually.

      Voíla, you’re off to the races.

    • IdleHands says:

      Y3K-Bug –

      Sad to say that method doesn’t work, well at least for my flat mate. It kicks you with a ‘could not authenticate steam logon’ type message and boots you from the game, even if you have steam in offline mode and play it single player.

  2. Psychopomp says:

    Wouldn’t Valve be the one with the leverage here? I’m confused.

    • Y3k-Bug says:

      They wouldn’t have the leverage in this situation, no.

      1) Remember, they are partnering with EA on the physical distribution so I doubt EA would be comfortable with Valve selling copies digitally before the physical versions could be sold, since that would cut EA out of their share. SInce EA is just the distributor and not the publisher, I doubt they make money off of the digital sales of the game.

      2) Steam is not comparable to moving the same volume of copies as retail; not by a long shot. Steam will not be replacing retail for a long time still, for a variety of reasons, so they are still very much beholden to traditional retail wishes.

  3. Headache says:

    Thank goodness I pre-ordered, and got the friends pack at that so my mates and I were all playing it last night. It is a fantastic game, I’m loving the wider variety of weapons and additional toys, the crazy new specials and learning to recognise their creepy noises as they approach. I’m not sure if it’s just because we’re all a little rusty but it felt a lot harder and the AI director seemed to be summoning hordes on a much more regular basis.

  4. Monchberter says:

    There already is a dearth of PC software in high street game retailers. And not having your product on the shelf is tantamount to losing a huge amount of ad space. I pretty much always see box copies of Valve games in these stores so narking the retailers is probably not a good idea.

    Additionally, i seem to always get the old ‘PC gaming is dying’ argument rolled out should i ever get into discussion with any dyed in the wool console gamers, and this perception is mostly based wholly on the meagre selections they see in the shops. Like it or not, retail has to stay for the moment. That is until the consoles go completely DLC, which i suspect the will do soon enough.

  5. EGTF says:

    I pre-ordered the game at 4:30am (there was good reason I was up at that time) so quite happy I did now considering this. The sad thing was that I knew I’d probably be getting it and enjoying it at some point anyway, and would kick myself for missing out on that Bill hat for TF2.

    Anyone else shamefully lulled in by the shiny meaningless hat?

  6. MadMatty says:

    I was slightly underwhelmed by the L4D2 demo, which seemed a lot like the first one. Anyways, i hear that the best campaigns are in the final release. Melee weaps are a plus.

  7. Gnoupi says:

    Today, Brits are denied (delayed) the right to kill, and mostly BURN human beings.
    Centuries later, Jeanne d’Arc had her revenge, at last!

    Besides, I guess such move has to be quite annoying, but I understand the idea, to be fair with retailers… finally, 3 days delay would be enough to make people jump on digital purchase, instead of waiting, and would then lower retailers’ profit on it. Valve have their own distribution system with Steam, quite successful, but remember the box is published by EA, so it’s not only about them, I guess.

  8. Morte says:

    Here’s my obligatory ‘was playing for hours last night, it’s bloody great’ post.

    anyway..

    Isn’t the retail releases only on a friday things a bit old hat now? And how did mw2 get away with not releasing on a friday? Get rid I say, daft rule.

  9. Tei says:

    The brick and mortar shops are /stab /stab /stab /stabbing the PC world even wen you don’t use then, and download things online. I hope once the transition to digital downloads is complete, none of this “region” malarky continue. But I am pesimist. Is ‘easy’* to fight that malarky, because It angryfy everyone and confuse people. But once people accept a evil, is hard to fight that evil because is how “traditionally work”.

    * and unefective.

  10. Nerd Rage says:

    Count it as a blessing in disguise. I’ve lost a lot of sleep over the last couple of days.

  11. sabbyp says:

    i’d just like to thank you guys for contacting valve and getting (at least) a response from them – the issue is as you’ve said, really quite annoying for people who it won’t unlock for, and also for people like me who have to wait for their friends copies to unlock before they can join in the fun.

    • sabbyp says:

      do you think the retail industry in the uk (game/gamestation/supermarkets) in the uk have struck a deal with valve in some way?

      That’s the only plausable reason for this to happen.

    • subedii says:

      @ sbbyp: That’s not quite how it works. Brick and mortar stores are VERY edgy when it comes to their business being undercut. Here, you’re basically talking about an online provider selling the game for several days before the street stores do.

      Like it or not, it’s the stores that have the power here. Even leaving aside what numbers the PC version sells over Steam compared to in-store, Valve still depend on them to sell the 360 version. And the stores will have no qualms, none, about pulling a title over something like this.

      Basically Valve’s stuck since the UK stores are only releasing later this week. So they’ve got two options. First is keep on selling to the UK market and effectively have brick and mortar stores effectively censure them and either stop selling the game or drastically hamstring its distribution. The second is delay the UK release to be in-line with the stores.

      Think a little back to the MW2 release. The Steam version was even held back a couple of days beyond UK retail for the stores to be happy. There may have been stores in continental europe not selling until that date, but there’s no doubt that Steam suffered a loss of business from releasing after everyone else.

      In any case, I pre-ordered with a few other guys to get in on a four-pack discount deal, so this doesn’t really affect me. I will just say that all the minor additions and changes DO add up to make it a much better game, and definitely a worthy sequel. And I say that having just played the first campaign.

    • kwyjibo says:

      Re: subedii

      I reckon it’s a contractual thing between Valve and EA rather than retail. Every disk is distributed by EA, they stand to lose more than fragmented retailers, who have mostly abandoned the PC anyway.

    • subedii says:

      It’s possible that EA were the ones that wanted this delay. But then you tell me, why would EA insist on deliberately delaying the release of the European version of the game past all others, when all that does is reduce profits and increase piracy?

      Also, it’s VERY important to not equate this solely with the PC release. EA’s sales aren’t going to come primarily from the PC release, they’re going to come from the 360 release, which is very much going to be fornt and centre in any store, even if it is behind MW2 at the moment. And it’s the 360 release that’s getting delayed alongside the PC version. Unlike anyone that pre-ordered off of Steam, 360 gamers don’t have the luxury of getting the game early. They’re stuck waiting until it’s in UK retail, or until Amazon ships them their copy early.

    • Ginger Yellow says:

      “But then you tell me, why would EA insist on deliberately delaying the release of the European version of the game past all others, when all that does is reduce profits and increase piracy?”

      Computer games are almost always released at retail on Fridays in Europe, and almost always released earlier in the week in the US. It’s just the way it works. Presumably part of this is tradition and part of this is to make logistics simpler. There’s nothing at all unusual about MW2 being like this, except that it’s such an anticipated launch.

    • kwyjibo says:

      Re: subedii

      No one cares that the retail release is delayed. That will be down to distributors and retailers.

      What’s the issue, is that the Steam release is being artificially held back. And that’s likely due to an EA/Valve agreement. EA stand to lose more from an early Steam release than all the retailers.

    • subedii says:

      EA can’t sell without the retailers and the retailers can’t sell without EA supplying the published copies. I don’t see how you’re saying that this HAS to be EA’s doing, they both lose out.

      It’s certainly possible, if not reasonable even, that EA would put a sim-ship clause in their contract. Thing is, I can see the retailers being just as cagey, and likely far more so, about a game shipping on a competing marketplace several days before they get the chance to release. No major retailer would ever accept that.

  12. kwyjibo says:

    It’s pathetic.

    Is it a contractual thing with EA? Because I really fail to see how releasing the PC version early on Steam is going to affect their retail partners. Who are they afraid of, GAME? I doubt it.

    • TotalBiscuit says:

      Yes? Of course they’re afraid of GAME, GAME are an enormous, dominant retail chain with immense buying power. As mentioned above, even if GAME completely stopped selling PC games, which is unlikely, they would still be stocking 360 games and having L4D2 removed from the shelves would be disastrous for Valve. New games are small potatoes for GAME, the margin is quite low, Valve stand to lose far more if GAME stops stocking Valve games than GAME do by not selling them.

      This is the reality of the situation and for now, that’s how it will stay.

    • kwyjibo says:

      Bullshit, have you not heard of supermarkets? They’ve been dominating the the headlines with their pricebusting deals on new games. Did you spot that HMV have moved away from music and into film and video games? Are you one of those who thought the gameStation buy should have been blocked by the competition commission?

      GAME lose next to nothing from allowing the Steam version to go ahead. Modern Warfare had 3% of its sales come from the PC version, it’s a rounding error. EA on the other hand, have published and distributed every retail copy of L4D2.

      Who’s got the most to lose? EA. If I were inking a distribution deal with Valve, I’d certainly have a simultaneous release clause.

    • TotalBiscuit says:

      None of what you just said disproves my comment and suggesting that GAME have nothing to lose by the Steam release going out first is flat-out wrong. The amount they stand to lose is not defined, but the fact that they will lose at least some money is undeniable fact.

    • The_B says:

      kwijibo You answered your own question there. Fair enough they may not be afraid of GAME. But as you said in your own response, it’s not just Game, it’s all the supermarkets as well.

      One shop granted may not be a lot to be scared of, the entire Retail industry however…

    • kwyjibo says:

      I’ve not answered my own question, unless you’re under the assumption that the entire retail industry is in collusion. Given the below-cost deals that the supermarkets have been having for tier one games, it’s clear that they’re not.

    • kwyjibo says:

      Oh, and totalBiscuit, I’m clearly not debating whether GAME would lose out.

      I’m just stating that there’s a fucking elephant in the room which would lose out even more, and has a lot more leverage over Valve. I’m also stating that GAME clearly don’t have the mythical power that you describe. Not only that, and the trivial amounts they’d lose if Steam shipped on time, is nothing compared to the amounts they would lose if they declined to stock a AAA title.

    • TotalBiscuit says:

      You’re talking out of your arse, let’s be honest. Yes, supermarkets have big buying power too, but to discount the influence of a huge chain like GAME is borderline insanity. They have supermarkets in the US too, most noteably evil corporate titan Walmart. Should Valve just say fuck you to Gamestop on that basis? Hell no, Gamestop still hold huge power. So do GAME, they’re enormous, they buy more games from distributors than Supermarkets do. We’ve got one of the biggest ASDAs in the UK in my hometown and even modest GAME’s piss on their stock levels of videogame titles from a great height.

      Loss leading on select huge releases like Modern Warfare 2 is not in any way logically indicative of a mythical lack of influence and buying power that GAME has. You need only read the trade mags to know how much clout GAME has.

  13. Carra says:

    Damn, the same thing happened with the new call of duty game. If you bought it through steam you could only unlock it friday.

    This just means that apart from the insanely high prices I just have a new reason not to buy any new games on Steam.

  14. jamie says:

    The point is that Valve/Steam lied about the games release date. It’s not a case of them having some small print somewhere or even something saying ‘valve reserve the rights to change release dates at the last minute’. I joined the official group and moreover looked at the store page. There was nothing saying the game would only be available to those who pre-ordered.
    So basically valve are tricking people into being paranoid in the future about having to wait ages for a game if they didnt pre-order it, after its already out? Or EA or whoever came along and said dont tell the steam users they wont be able to play this for 3 days if they dont preorder it so EA can make more money from box sales as less people will inevitably pre-purchase if they think they can d/l after release.
    They should be apologising when they just state the shitty fucked up facts like the people concerned/affected dont already know.
    “Those who pre-ordered the game via Steam in the UK before the worldwide launch have been given access to the game.”
    Oh right! Why wasnt this stated?! Explaination? The page said worldwide Stream release 17th nov! Its bullshit like this that makes me want to scoop half my brain out and buy an xbox.

    • subedii says:

      Valve can’t really help it if UK retail wants to act like complete morons and block them from selling earlier. As it is Valve compromised by allowing pre-orders to play, but they are NOT in any position to undercut retail.

    • jamie says:

      Well can’t they just STATE THE FACTS INSTEAD OF LYING.

    • subedii says:

      Likely because they didn’t know UK / Eurozone retail was going to delay on the release at the time. This is either a retail delay trying for Friday, or the copies just didn’t make it to stores in time. Considering it’s a global launch, I’m guessing most everywhere else got it at the same time. However, when I’m having a quick check at something like Amazon France and Amazon Germany it gives me a release date of the 19th. Meanwhile, places like Australia and New Zealand HAVE released on time.

      Think about it for a second. There is NO benefit to Valve do deliberately delaying any version of the game. That just increases piracy, and more importantly, reduces direct sales from the Steam store. Companies try for global simultaneous launches all the time, but it certainly doesn’t work that way all the time, as the recent debacle with MW2 showed.

    • Ginger Yellow says:

      Um, if they wanted to trick people, surely they’d have said that pre-orders would have the game early and then delayed the unlock. As it is, people didn’t think they’d have any timing incentive to pre-order – hardly the most Macchiavellian behaviour around. And, besides, release dates are always subject to change and should never be considered binding, ethically or legally. All it means is: “We expect to have the game available on this date.”

    • Psychopomp says:

      Lying has to be intentional.

      “Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity.”

  15. lofaesofa says:

    Anecdotally, I went to a large regional shopping centre (Lakeside) last night which has two GAME stores. One of the stores had no PC games in the shop and said they wouldn’t be stocking any until after December. The larger second store had a small section at the back of the shop with no large PC game displays. I don’t recall seeing any L4D2 promotion in store but there was plenty of MW2.

    Thankfully I preordered L4D2 and was playing last night. I really enjoyed the finale for the first campaign :)

  16. mandrill says:

    Games producers don’t care about UK retailers when it comes to PC games as more and more of them have cut down the shelf-space for the PC until it is all but non-existant. No shelf-space = less sales, less sales = less interest from producers. Add to that that the retailers make more money selling shelf-space to the console publishers than they do actually selling the games to customers and you see the cause of the lackadasical support for PC in retail outlets.

    The people buying the games are not a priority to the retailers anymore as their main source of income hs shifted from them to the publishers. This shows itself up in the complete disintegration of any kind of customer service in games retailing. Its why I quit working at GAME. I was told not to be honest about my opinions of games when talking to customers and to push whichever game we were being paid to promote that week, crap or not.

    Its a sorry state of affairs.

  17. Snidesworth says:

    I’ve had the exact same issue with Borderlands and Dragon Age. Both times I’ve ended up pirating the games and playing them while waiting for my legitimate digital copies to unlock.

    • Malibu Stacey says:

      Good luck pirating L4D2 or any other multiplayer-only games by VALVe.

  18. Lilliput King says:

    I can wait.

    • Malibu Stacey says:

      Same here. It’s not like the world is going to end if I don’t get to play this game right now.

      To be honest how many people in the whole of the UK who want to play this game right now didn’t already pre-order it anyway? If you’re really that hyped about it surely you would’ve already dropped the £27 on it before it went live?

      Personally I’ve got enough games to play right now. I can wait for the price to drop to something a bit more reasonable like £15 which I fully expect the online retailers (Amazon, Play, gameplay et al) to do given a couple of months as is always the case. With VALVe games you don’t even need to put the DVD in your machine, all you need is the serial code & it’s the same as having bought it through Steam itself (although the DVD saves you time & bandwidth).

  19. EBass says:

    If this was Infinity Ward we’d probably have had a press release by now claiming that ” Our research shows that the majority of our UK customers wanted the game delayed until Friday in their region. We made this move to benefit all our customers.”

    What I don’t understand is, ok games are USUALLY released Friday in the UK, but its not like its a law. Why can’t they just change the street date to Tuesday?

    • TotalBiscuit says:

      Because if you do that, the stores that have not got their copies yet are going to get pissy at you? You make the choice between pissing off a bunch of relatively ineffectual gamers who will buy the game anyway, or pissing off retail stores that can actually do you real damage if they want to.

  20. The Sombrero Kid says:

    what i don’t get is surely steam tells you that you can’t play it till Friday when you’re buying it, if it does then stop whining if it doesn’t then this is slightly shady of valve.

    • jamie says:

      the point is before the game was released the store page on steam said the worldwide release on steam was nov 17. That means it doesnt matter what country youre in when it says worldwide, you see?

    • Malibu Stacey says:

      Yes and if you bought it through Steam before it was released you could play it from the 17th worldwide.

      So what exactly is your point?

    • jamie says:

      that that fact wasnt stated on the store page. A worldwide release on steam should mean EVERYONE CAN DOWNLOAD IT FROM STEAM. Can I make things more simple for you to understand? If you can’t be bothered to read the posts then don’t bother commenting?

    • Malibu Stacey says:

      I’m reading the posts, I’m also reading the Steam store page.

      The facts are thusly:
      If you bought it before the 17th via Steam you got to play it regardless of your location.

      If you’re in the UK and you try to buy it after the 17th the Steam store page says in large font at the top it unlocks on the 20th (seriously go look I’m not making this shit up). Not to mention the 10% pre-order discount is also gone so there’s no financial benefit to buying it off Steam anymore as most online retailers are selling the DVD for around £27 but that’s beside the point.

      So I’m still not seeing your point. It’s almost as if you don’t actually have one and are arguing in circles (mostly with yourself). Are you really that angry about something which is is going to be a non-issue in 1 day & 7 hours?

    • jamie says:

      its about what the store page said before the release. How old are you?

  21. the affront says:

    I can’t contain my excitement for the day when all of the stuck-in-the-past retailer mafiosi finally kick the last of the PC games off their shelves and we can always have simultaneous world-wide releases via download and no longer arbitrarily overpriced download versions just to appease the fucking retailers.

    Even if that should coincide with no more consolized AAA titles on the PC (no dedicated server & matchmaking & DLC bullshit & non-skippable intros & ugly + uncomfortable menus/inventory systems blatantly designed to be used with an inferior controller and given no overhaul whatsoever to meet PC usability standards & PRESS ENTER BEFORE ENTERING THE FUCKING MENU, WHAT THE FUCK HAPPENED TO MY FUCKING MOUSE?, I’m looking down my snobby PC gamer nose at you), I say bring it.

    Don’t mind me, just doing my part to fill the angry internet men quota. And that even though I’m completely, utterly uninterested in L4D2.

    • Psyk says:

      Only having digital distribution is the worst idea ever we don’t all have the bandwidth for that.

  22. HybridHalo says:

    Say what you will, but the gap between US and UK release is the shortest it’s been for a long time.

    I think if you didn’t pre-order it, you can wait a couple of days – I was for some reason expecting it to unlock on Friday and was pleasantly surprised yesterday. All this furor is a little inane, did Valve release L4D2 too close to L4D1 or 3 days too late isn’t really a worthwhile discussion when the output is of this quality.

    Let’s just be happy it exists.

  23. jRides says:

    I “pre-ordered” from Amazon, no sign of it at all so far.

  24. Neut says:

    It’s only 3 days, go climb a mountain and make love to a beautiful women first, then binge the weekend away :D (may only do the second part).

  25. Tei says:

    What I did with Borderlands and this problem, was to use a VPN service to let Steam see a USA IP, then once the game started (after unlocking) disabling the VPN to have a european ip again.

    Using your IP to detect your country IMHO sould be considered illegal. My country, area where I live, is none of your bussines (pun no intended). You are allowed to see my data from the credit card, but nothing else.

    • subedii says:

      DD should be a global defined marketplace, but unfortunately it still exists in a world where retail and retail limitations and considerations set the pace. At least for the time being.

      You’ve also got issues like regional variations (Australian version), and you’ve got a whole new can of worms open if DD companies were to ignore rating board decisions.

    • Archonsod says:

      The US has a list of companies you can’t trade with, if Valve break that then they’ll lose their business license if they’re lucky, or end up in prison if they’re unlucky.
      Using rdns is a bit of a loophole. As you point out it’s easy to work around for anyone with the requisite knowledge, but because they use it they can still defend themselves should someone buy something when they shouldn’t be allowed to. If they meant business they could just check against the address your credit/debit card or Paypal account is registered to, which is a lot harder to work around.

    • Tei says:

      Theres a way to lock regions to cd-keys, so one cd-key unlock the game to work like a german version, while other cd-key unlock the game to be a different one.

      Internet sould be considered a separate region ( the 8th continent? ) and have his own release dates, and rules. I can be a USA guy, with UK parents, in a USA militar base, in Cuba, with a french credit card, downloading stuff using a modem connected with a ISP in miami, and connecting with that ISP trough a VPN to have a german IP. What is my region? Steam sould probably say Germany. I can buy a game in Moscu, move to London, and the game will refuse to unlock, take the flight to Italia, and the game will unlock. Cool. It don’t make sense to me.

    • alset says:

      Using your IP to detect your country IMHO sould be considered illegal.

      Word! I agree completely!

    • Psychopomp says:

      Every single website you ever visit has your IP address, Tei. If steam didn’t make use of it, you’d be paying in american dollars, or you’d have to set the country you live in in your setti-OOPS, they know what country you live in.

  26. Vitamin Powered says:

    So glad I preordered now, but I feel for my fellow brits who have to wait for no real reason at all.

    What with this, hearing about the Oz censorship from friends and the preorder demo madness this release has been a bit weird. (then again… HL2 had its fair share of issues)

  27. oz says:

    I think we’re all losing track of whats important here….

    Who cares about an Add-on pack?

    BOYCOOOOOOOOOOTTTTTTTTTTTTTT!

  28. DMJ says:

    The PC section in my local retailer has shrunk for years. Currently it occupies one of the half-height “island” displays at the back of the store. Half of it is “GET FIFTEEN GAMES FOR 12.3p” offers, the other half appears to be Modern Warfare 2.

    Retailers have abandoned the PC as not worth devoting shelf space to, yet they demand a degree of control over the timing of online PC gaming sales? They want control over something they don’t seem to want to sell themselves?

    Makes no sense to me.

    • Malibu Stacey says:

      You almost hit the nail on the head there. It’s all about control.

      However everyone seems to be confusing a retail release with “bricks and mortar stores” & totally forgetting about online retailers. They’re still subject to the same release schedules & restrictions as physical shops as they’re selling the exact same thing, a DVD in a case.
      Just because you buy it using the internet & it gets to your place of residence via Royal Mail or a courier rather than you paying for it in a shop & carrying it home yourself doesn’t change a single thing in this regard.

    • Malibu Stacey says:

      Reply to my own reply is a bit annoying but until the edit feature comes back it’ll have to do.

      Forgot to say I literally can’t remember the last time I bought a game, PC or console in an actual shop (or even hardware, PC or console for that matter). Any games I don’t buy through Steam or directly from an indie developer’s digital distribution method comes from an online retailer as a retail product & I suspect I’m in the very large majority going by most people’s descriptions of their local games chain store’s PC selection.

  29. Edgar the Peaceful says:

    The same bullshit happened with Dragon Age. Quite unacceptable I think.

    Use CyberGhost VPN to connect to Steam and pretend you’re from Germany – This worked with Dragon Age. It’s quick and easy to use.

    Really poor. I kind of expected it from EA, but not Valve.

  30. Flappybat says:

    This bullshit does keep happening, Dragon Age steam, Borderlands steam, Modern Warfare 2 steam and Left 4 Dead 2 retail, the UK keeps getting stuck with artificial delays for no reason. Purely from a perspective on piracy this is a terrible approach let alone the crap players have to put up with when two million Americans play the game from the same digital store and you sit twiddling your thumbs for four days.

  31. TeeJay says:

    High street “retailers” can go to hell. They are bad enough already but behaviour like this is putting the nail in their coffin as far as my future custom is concerned.

    Online is still there because of lower prices but today I am wishing I had got Dragon Age off Steam because my disk is giving me ‘xml’ errors which stops it installing.

    I strongly suspect that it is this kind of retailer pressure (aka uncompetative restriction of trade through blackmail) that prevents publishers from offering good prices for their games on Steam (except via short-lived weekend deals etc). For example:

    Dragon Age
    RRP 34.99 steam 29.99 play 26.99 GAME 24.99

    Tropico 3
    RRP 29.99 steam 26.99 play 24.99 GAME 24.99

    Borderlands
    RRP 34.99 steam 29.99 play 24.99 GAME 24.99

    GTA4
    RRP 34.99 steam 26.99 play 14.99 GAME 14.99

    L4D2
    RRP 34.99 steam 26.99 play 26.99 GAME 29.99

  32. jamie says:

    sucks to be? youre obviously about 9 or a complete loser writing pointless drivel about something he has nothing to say about…

  33. jamie says:

    i really dont know why im bothering with this but what youre unable to understand is that im taking about what the store page said BEFORE THE RELEASE. If you still dont understand just give up. There is obviously an issue here cos theyve put a post up about it. Why are you here if you dont want to know whats going on?

  34. Hicks says:

    Hey Jamie,

    I thought I’d cheer you up by saying that I understand your point.

    The Steam Store said it would be a worldwide Steam release on the 17th November. People purchased the game in good faith on the 17th, me included.

    After downloading the game I noticed that it said it was yet to be released. I spent a few hours on the forums trying to work out why a game that was announced on Steam as being available and which all my UK buddies were playing was still down on my games list as Unreleased.

    I finally found the Valve Blog explaining that the UK retail release had been pushed back to the 20th November and that they should hopefully have all UK players playing by the 20th, but that they had allowed people in the UK who had pre-ordered to play from the 17th.

    The frustrating part of all this is not that we have to wait an extra three days to play the game but rather that the game was advertised as being released on the 17th for UK players when it clearly wasn’t and rather than announce it on the Steam Store or put a sticky up in the L4D2 official forum they blogged about it so that people had to hunt down the information.

    Jamie, along with everyone else, are upset because they were misled and answering this discussion with accusations of childishness because we can’t play the game for another three days is completely missing the original point made.

    T—————–T (this is a very bad emote of a bridge for all the trolls in this thread to hide under :P)

  35. Hicks says:

    Oh, and 1 hr 12 minutes till release (but I’m not counting)