Ubisoft: Cancelled Keys Bought Fraudulently From Origin

Satire, yeah? The mission area represents... a thing and the bow is... another thing?

Ubisoft last week deactivated copies of games including Far Cry 4 and Watch Underscore Dogs for a number of folks who had bought them from game key resellers, later briefly explaining the keys had been “fraudulently obtained”. Now they’ve said a bit more. The keys in question were bought from EA’s digital store Origin with fraudulent credit card details then sold on by resellers, Ubi have explained. EA confirmed this, and have also removed Ubi’s games from Origin to somehow “protect against further fraudulent purchases”, which seems a bit weird. Ubi are directing folks to their resellers to get refunds, and at least one plans compensation.

Ubi explained in a statement provided to to Game Informer:

“We regularly work with our authorized resellers to identify and deactivate fraudulently obtained and resold keys. In this case, we confirmed activation keys were recently purchased from EA’s Origin store using fraudulent credit card information and then resold online. These keys may have been deactivated. Customers who may have been impacted should contact the vendor where they purchased the key for a refund.”

EA confirmed the story to GI, saying they spotted the fraud then told Ubi. I’m not sure how removing Ubi games from Origin is a real fix, unless Ubi keys were somehow the only target for key fraudsters, but hey!

G2A, one of the key resellers folks had bought now-cancelled keys from, say they’re looking into it (via VG247). They explained they “will check if the corresponding merchant was responsible for the withdrawal of the code”, and offer compensation if that’s the case, which it since seems to be. Either way, they’ll give new codes or refunds to everyone who had ‘G2A Shield’, a guarantee which costs extra. It seems G2A have been trusting the wrong people, as they say they will “make every possible exertion to prevent this kind of procedures in the future and exclude merchants responsible for such incidents from the marketplace.”

[I’ve updated this story’s headline because it’s all twisting my melon, man.]

From this site

91 Comments

  1. The Sombrero Kid says:

    I’m sure Ubisoft and EA sent the money back to the poor credit card company who was out of pocket from this.

    • Sihoiba says:

      Working in the online payment industry I can say the credit card companies will definitely have taken their money back, probably plus some administration fees.

    • golem09 says:

      Why would they need to send it back? The credit card companies just took it back. They are certainly the last ones in the whole chain of moneyflow who will accept losing even a single dime.

    • The Sombrero Kid says:

      Ohh dear, I look pretty stupid now, I blame my predisposition towards not trusting Ubisoft and my tendancy to talk about things I know nothing about. So it’s not my fault if you think about it, or if you don’t.

  2. AngoraFish says:

    I’m still not sure that “fraudulent credit card information”/ “fraudulent credit cards” is precisely the same thing as “stolen”. This could just as easily mean that the buyers used Russian street addresses as the billing address (technically fraud, if it’s not their real address), and paid with a disposable credit card.

    This all has a very strong scent of enforcing regional pricing restrictions on third party resellers, rather than reversing a few credit card transactions that were later declined by a bank when the credit card owner queried the unknown transactions on their statement.

    • Frank says:

      Yeah, that’s the impression I’ve had since I heard about this yesterday. The RPS headline interprets “fraudulent” too narrowly. Besides, purchases with stolen cards get shut down quickly, don’t they? If they were stolen, the credit card companies would likely have demanded refunds from (or at least contacted) G2A long ago.

      • shutter says:

        Fraud chargebacks can take up to 90 days or so to shake out. Most get caught within hours/days, but especially with high volume exploits/fraud it can take a few weeks to unravel everything. It’s pretty nightmarish for everyone involved, especially since the criminal/legal component puts fairly strict requirements on what kind of remedies you can implement.

        (This is as someone who used to get involved peripherally in past Origin related payment issues back when I worked there)

        • Moraven says:

          I remember Blizzard taking some other measures to delay credit card payments to help prevent fraud.

    • Alice O'Connor says:

      Agh, sure, yeah, I’ve updated that. Sorry, these messes of publishers being vague and stores being vague and resellers being vague and regional pricing being vague and… with no one actually willing to say what happened, it’s very frustrating.

    • Michael Anson says:

      As someone who was part of the recent Origin mass account breakins, I can confirm that a large number of these keys were purchased fraudulently from compromised accounts. My account was completely drained on Origin purchases of uPlay games (which you can get a key for, due to uPlay being a separate service), and it took a few days for my bank to straighten things out. In my case, my account was compromised shortly after the tech news site ArsTechnica had been hacked (I’d only used Origin for one purchase, so the thought of it needing a password change hadn’t crossed my mind).

      It baffles me that people who purchased stolen goods from a shady dealer are upset that their goods don’t work, and think that the manufacturer should make things right for them. That is exactly the risk you take for purchasing goods from a reseller, pawn shop, or similar marketplace, especially when you don’t do your research into how that business operates. People who lost games they did not pay an actual store for should not be mad at the company that made them, but rather the people that sold them stolen goods, the people that stole the goods, and even themselves for profiting off of the hardship of people like myself who cannot afford to pay for their steep discount.

      • wengart says:

        The thing is places like G2A don’t seem that shady. You have a youtube personality that Ubisoft uses to promote their games promoting G2A. The website seems well put together and there isn’t any reason to suspect that it isn’t a legitimate place.

        • Michael Anson says:

          I’d argue that resellers are inherently shady, as they exist to try to circumvent local purchasing laws. By trying to get a better price, purchasers are carrying the additional risk of purchasing fraudulently obtained keys, particularly if those prices are significantly lower than local prices. Further, I’d argue that having a nice website or being endorsed by celebrities does not make a business any more or less shady (all manner of shady things have had celebrity endorsements, from hard drugs and prostitution to Scientology, and those same shady things tend to have good webmasters/advertisers, because being shady means wider profit margins).

        • fish99 says:

          Apart form the ‘too good to be true’ prices…

          • TrixX says:

            There are a few other things to take into account. The pricing from large publishers is often prohibitive or even a downright scam. I doubt many people who purchased Far Cry 4 or Assassin’s Creed Unity will say they received a product worth the $60-70 that they were charging for the base game, even less so for those who purchased the $120 Gold editions.
            Add to that the X% geolocation tax for certain regions such as Australia where the $59.99 USD game suddenly becomes $74.95 USD for no obvious reason other than EA and Ubisoft’s bean counters have worked out higher profits for the region based on some crazy metric. Thing is the dollar in Australia is not only worth less than the USD (by around 32%), the buying power within the region is also less again. Suddenly that $74.95 USD game becomes a $96.97 AUD game. Yeah totally fair…

            The second problem is communication. There was no notice, there was only instant removal of the product then only the forum moderators on the Ubisoft forums accusing players of purchasing products from illegal vendors etc…

            This is one of my most disliked issues with DRM systems like Origin or Uplay, it takes away the purchasing power of the customer. Previously with a Disk, the Publisher wouldn’t be able to remove the disk from the customer. They owned the purchase whether shady or not. Most customers wouldn’t have realised that the keys purchased were stolen up to 3 weeks earlier from Origin. Technically the customer hadn’t done anything actually wrong as many many keys are sold perfectly fine through stores like G2A and Kinguin (two of the stores hit so far) without any problems with legality.

            What these alternate companies are showing the big publishers is that there is a reason for selling at lower prices in a lot of regions. Even lowering the overall product price would more than likely garner less pirated and grey market sold copies and in turn more direct revenue for the Publisher.

            When a game is priced reasonably, I’ll pay for it. When it’s marked up to hell and back because some company in Canada thinks Australia is just a penal colony, well screw it I’ll get it at penal colony prices…

      • P.Funk says:

        Not to be rude, but how exactly can you confirm anything beyond what happened to you personally?

        • Michael Anson says:

          link to reddit.com
          link to venturebeat.com
          link to pcgamer.com
          link to ign.com

          A few examples. There was a massive amount of fraudulent purchases that occurred while EA Origin support was out for the winter holiday. The account compromises continued over the following weekends, into early January. My personal experience was a drop in the bucket. There were also articles on a number of gaming sites, including Kotaku (but not RPS).

      • thedosbox says:

        my account was compromised shortly after the tech news site ArsTechnica had been hacked

        What does this have to with Origin? Or were you foolish enough to use the same password across multiple sites?

        • Michael Anson says:

          When I started my Origin account, I hadn’t intended to associate any purchasing information with it. This was some time ago, and my account had always been full of things from either Humble Bundles or offered as free items from Origin. When I did decide to make a purchase, I had forgotten about the throwaway password I had used to secure the account, and Origin had not mentioned their new two-factor authentication at that time. Accidents happen, and the week I spent unable to purchase anything, including food, for my fiance or myself was punishment enough.

          That does not excuse the reprehensible souls that decided they had every right to profit off of the hard work of others, plundering their financial accounts to fund what was essentially a scam. And it does not give those people who decided they are entitled to lower prices and purchased stolen goods without verifying their origin the inherent right to keep those goods. Nobody has the right to profit off of theft.

  3. revan says:

    One clear reason why I avoid resellers like G2A, Gamesrocket and such. First, they hassle you when purchasing the game and you’re never sure from where they get their keys.

    This also exposes all the customer risk when using digital distribution sites like Steam or Origin. While I love Steam it is clear that we don’t own anything our money has supposedly bought. Someone can pull games from our accounts at a whim.

    Ultimately, it is not Ubisoft or these resellers that are damaged by this. They both got the money, stolen credit card or not. It is the honest customers who are left in the wind with no game they paid for fair and square and in most cases not even a refund.

    • Renevent says:

      I believe the credit card companies have recourse for this type of stuff and routinely get their money back.

      • mike2R says:

        I would assume so – if someone buys a stolen key on G2A of whatever, G2A needs to refund them. G2A Shield purchased or no, the goods were not G2A’s to sell, and they need to issue a refund.

        If they don’t, I’d think anyone who bought one could, assuming they used a card for the purchase, do a chargeback and get their money back.

        • TacticalNuclearPenguin says:

          Yeah, this is the funniest part, it seems you’re entitled to a refund only if you paid for the extra service. A weird way of apologizing for their shady business.

          Just like i’m sure they’ll transform in a perfectly legit site after this incident.

        • stupid_mcgee says:

          Better yet, sue G2A. That’s what I would threaten them with. Not a chargeback, but actual court case for selling fraudulent goods.

          Fuck these idiots. They deserve every single bit of misery that comes to them from this.

    • Geebs says:

      Caveat emptor

    • Alfius says:

      “This also exposes all the customer risk when using digital distribution sites like Steam or Origin. While I love Steam it is clear that we don’t own anything our money has supposedly bought. Someone can pull games from our accounts at a whim.”

      This has always been the case and is not really the issue here.

      If what I’ve read elsewhere is true the revoked keys were purchased using stolen card details and then resold at a fraction of their original worth. Purchasers of these code have played an unwitting role in what is effectively a money laundering operation. Removing access to the games isn’t about punishing the consumer it’s meant to discourage the crooks from trying this sort of scam again in future. I would expect that in this situation most decent card providers and on-line payment managers would provide a ‘no-quibbles’ refund.

      End of the day, card fraud is a more serious concern that whether or not you get to play video games. Raging at Ubi for doing the right thing accomplishes nothing.

      As an aside, any other lawyers with thoughts on the idea of a game code as intangible property? Of course a game purchased is never really ‘owned’, rather the purchaser is granted a licence to use the product, but I wonder could the code itself be construed as conferring benefit to the holder on use and so itself be considered a form of intangible personal property? If so then the issue of title disappears, the resellers never had title to the codes so are incapable of passing title to the purchaser. On the other side of the coin, if the codes are not property but are a mere mechanism to bring about entry into a licence agreement then could it not be argued that on entering a code into their steam or origin account they are entering into a licence with Ubi regardless of how the code was acquired? Hard to say if this would have any effect but the consumer with no notice that the codes were fraudulently acquired could not be said to have entered into the licence for the purposes of fraud (i.e. not in breach of the clean hands maxim?).

      Colour me confused (and bring me my old contract textbooks).

      • revan says:

        That’s basically my point. Consumers didn’t commit fraud but they are paying the heaviest price. As for refunds, I am sure G2A will give refunds to those customers which paid them overhead (G2A Shield) but all the others will probably never see their money again.

        I support going after crooks who steal credit card info, make no mistake, but it should be done so that honest customers don’t suffer the consequences.

      • wengart says:

        I don’t believe Ubisoft did the right thing. I think they are largely being gigantic asses. They should have comped all the games purchased and sent an email/pop up via uplay letting the purchaser know that the game they purchased uses a fraudulent key. They then should say “in the future we will be revoking fraudulent keys. To avoid having your key revoked please purchase your game from an official seller (list of places you can legitimately buy the game)”.

        As it stands some customers lost out on a fair purchase that they made in good faith.

        If I google “buy far cry 4 cheap” G2A is the first site to come up. There is no reason I should believe a key purchased there should be revoked.

        • Philopoemen says:

          Then there is no deterrent against the criminal networks doing it repeatedly.

          Penalizing the few protects the many – G2A and other resellers now have to do due diligence when buying the keys, lest they have more revoked, which drops their bottom line.

          Resellers not buying keys from dodgy sources means those sources will look to other ways to cleanse ill-gotten gains.

          • TacticalNuclearPenguin says:

            But then again they’ll still sell ultra cheap freshly released game, so i guess their “due diligence” will be something along the lines of being smarter and draw less heat, rather than turning into a legitimate business.

            And yes, it sucks that the players were the ones penalized the most, but in all honesty i’m sure a good chunk of them were perfectly aware of the shop’s nature. The other “innocent” ones are, sorry if i’m blunt, victims of their own poor research and i’m sure their bank is able to arrange something if G2A doesn’t want to refund.

            I mean, really, they have a program that gives you money the more you spam every possible website. Please.

          • wengart says:

            There is a a deterrent. You tell everyone “hey in the future we are going to revoke the keys, but this time its on us.” Then you publish a list of “Ubisoft approved vendors” and revoke keys all you want.

            If any of you recall when Green Man Gaming first started they would give you store credit for referral links. It was something like $10 per referral. Now GMG is a legitimate site that pushed people to spam other websites with these links. Hell I did it quite a bit. It netted me something like $400 of store credit. Point is G2A isn’t obviously a sketchy site.

          • TacticalNuclearPenguin says:

            Yep, but my spamming example was supposed to add to the context, not to be taken alone. I don’t recall GMG being able to discount around 50% more or less any ultra-requested fresh AAA game on release day, and if that happened i surely wouldn’t think i was shopping in a legit place.

            GMG is rather solid though, sometimes they managed some decent price reductions on very hot preorders, but that happened with Steam sometimes too and extremely situational either way.

        • Michael Anson says:

          So what you are saying is that Ubisoft should pay $60 for every $30 someone else paid for a title, because a thief decided to steal from one person, use that money to buy an Ubisoft game, turn around and sell it to someone else who didn’t want to pay Ubisoft directly because they didn’t want to pay $60?

          And by your reasoning, if someone steals a priceless family heirloom and sells it to a pawn shop, and someone else buys it from the pawn shop for a ridiculously low price, the police are not in any way empowered to give that item back to the person who was robbed, because the last person in the chain paid money for it?

      • Philopoemen says:

        While not on the same scale, I charged a young gentleman in relation to in-game purchases using funds he was not entitled to, and it was a bitch at court trying to prove the element of “gains a benefit” when there is no tangible, physical property or gain financially etc.

        In the end, the magistrate ruled that “enjoyment must be considered a gain”, but it was an interesting defence to the fraud charge.

        • MartinWisse says:

          Would’ve probably have been easier in the Netherlands, as there’s case law that says that yes, digital goods are goods and can be stolen, hence a much lower barrier to prove that he did gain a benefit.

    • Ninja Foodstuff says:

      As Lewie pointed out, this is all rather ironic when you consider G2A is endorsed by a YouTuber that is in turn endorsed by Ubisoft.

      • Premium User Badge

        basilisk says:

        I’m not entirely sure why should Ubisoft have any control over who PewDiePie is affiliated with. In fact, it seems like a rather bad idea.

        • iainl says:

          They shouldn’t have control. But they shouldn’t endorse him if he’s promoting stores that aren’t on The Secret List Of Goodies.

          • Premium User Badge

            basilisk says:

            And by extension, before sending out review codes to any outlet, should they first check all of its advertisers in case something is slightly off there?

            I do get the argument, but it’s opening yet another can of worms that is not terribly helpful here and honestly feels a bit off.

          • stupid_mcgee says:

            I think basilisk said it well. But beyond his points, why should it be on Ubi’s shoulders to make sure people aren’t endorsing shoddy resellers? Honestly, that’s on PDP’s shoulders. It’s his fault for taking the money for endorsement without checking the integrity of who is paying him, not Ubi. And it’s his fault that his endorsement of a shoddy reseller put his fans at financial risk. On top of all that, why in the holy fuck would anyone think that an endorsement from braindead fuckup that screams “RAPE! PIGGY! RAPE!” over and over carries any sort of validity whatsoever?

            “Did you buy those tickets from Toothless Joe’s Totally Legit and Not Shady Corner Ticket Store?”

            “Yep, just like Crackhead Shitpants suggested!”

      • revan says:

        Spot on analysis. Mirrors my thoughts exactly, except for all that PowDiePie bit, but only because I don’t watch his videos, so he or anyone else in the same line of business couldn’t have influenced my choice of digital retailer.

        I’ve also been avoiding Ubisoft games for several years due to their DRM and business practices like this one.

    • Kordanor says:

      @revan: Just wanted to mention that Gamesrocket, while being a reseller, is an authorized vendor.
      It’s also based in Germany (and not in Hong Kong like the others). I am pretty sure here in Germany they already would have gone to jail if they make their money like G2A, Kinguin and MMOGA (all based in Hong Kong).

      Other authorized Vendors are: Green Man Gaming, Humble Store, Direct 2 Drive, GamersGate

  4. MrFlakeOne says:

    I don’t know about the others, but when I made a purchase on Origin using my bank card, the game just appeared in my library and there was no option to get an actual key, so this story is some kind of real bullshit to me.

    • Premium User Badge

      FhnuZoag says:

      Maybe it’s different with Ubisoft games on Origin, somehow? And that’s why they took them down?

      • Junkenstein says:

        Yeah, I doubt anyone’s been stupid enough to legitimately buy a Uplay game through Origin, because why in hell would anyone do that? There is literally zero reason.

        • Ross Angus says:

          I bought Bad Company 2 from Origin, because it was a quid.

      • Mokinokaro says:

        If it’s like buying them from steam you still have to activate the game on uplay so you get a key for that purpose.

        This whOle thing is definitely buyer beware. Buying games at the ridiculous discounts G2A often offers is always going to be a risk as most of those keys likely “fell off a truck” somewhere.

    • revan says:

      I’ve recently bought The Secret World from Origin, because I couldn’t get it from Steam, and they provide you with the key to use in the game client. I suspect it’s similar with Ubisoft games. No matter from where you buy it, even Steam, the game must go through uPlay.

  5. Premium User Badge

    teije says:

    This whole fracas just makes buying from Gog more appealing than ever.

  6. Junkenstein says:

    Eurogamer has this quote:

    “We strongly recommend that players purchase keys and downloadable games only from the Uplay Store or their trusted retailers,” a Ubisoft spokesperson said in a statement issued to Eurogamer.

    “We regularly work with our authorised resellers to identify and deactivate fraudulently obtained and resold keys.

    It’s frustrating that, as far as I’m aware, there is no Ubisoft list of authorised resellers available, yet they continue to mention it in press releases as if the customers are stupid for using anyone other than these ‘trusted resellers’. I’d really like to see RPS try to get this list, if it exists.

    • vanhisa says:

      Steam? Brick store?

    • Herbal Space Program says:

      If the game cost an eye-watering 60$ then it’s a thrusted retailer.

    • Bull0 says:

      Seconded

    • TacticalNuclearPenguin says:

      From a professional standpoint i would tend to agree with you, providing a list would be the serious thing to do, but on a practical standpoint i don’t really believe a list of any kind is really needed.

      Impossible prices on just launched AAA games are a hard to miss sign. I don’t know how much the concept of “good faith” should be stretched, we’re not talking about subtle things here really.

      Ultimately, if this list still doesn’t exist, which i can give you that it’s slightly unprofessional, it’s mostly because it’s hard to believe people can’t recognize what’s so horribly shady. I personally don’t believe it neither.

      Then there’s the can of worms of regional pricing. Trying to fix this in other ways might seem “fine”, and i’d normally agree with you, but it’s still illegal and any justification for you actions is nothing more than self validation, just like for piracy.

      Why can’t gamers gather against all this crap? Not worth it? nothing will ever change? Any other excuse? They can’t because they’ll just find a way to sneak around the problem, effortless and painless enough, no need to bother with something more involved than that. The “success” rate of the various boycotts springs to mind.

      • Ed Burst says:

        “Impossible prices on just launched AAA games are a hard to miss sign.”
        If you go by the rule “Don’t buy games at impossible prices” it just means that the resellers can sell the fraudulently obtained keys at much higher prices (a tiny bit less than the legitimate price) without arousing your suspicion.

        • Steve Catens says:

          I’m not sure I believe that most people are tempted to buy from an unproven seller over a pittance. It usually requires a significant “deal” to tempt people to wander off the beaten path from proven retailers they know and are comfortable using.

          Of course, I say that from a position of being a consumer in a relatively well regulated market with a lot of legitimate purchasing options. The issue may be less clear cut for people in other markets.

      • Siimon says:

        From my limited understanding, G2A is a bit like eBay.

        FC4 was a free game with an NVIDIA card purchase. If you don’t want the game, you’ll sell it for a few bucks under retail because nobody would buy from ebay/g2a at the exact same price as Steam. Next person sells for a buck less than that. Rinse and repeat and games are devalued quickly.

        Also, in some markets, games cost less (nuuvem) so if you compare the price there with the price at g2a it might only be a minor difference and thus g2a isn’t as oddball.

  7. Somerled says:

    Oh Ubisoft, you megalomaniac with the heart of a pterodactyl and the mind of a child. If you had briefly stopped to consider working this out together with the retailers and customers instead of just pushing the flashy red deactivate button before slinking back to the darkest corner to huddle with your precious magical macguffins and map markers. If you had patience and regard. If you had remembered what it was like to be human.

    Oh Ubisoft …

  8. TacticalNuclearPenguin says:

    The funny stuff is that means they’re not even selling Steam keys. Another lose in the lose-lose scenario.

  9. iainl says:

    Wait, explain to me again how getting a refund if the item you purchased turns out to be stolen goods that don’t work is an optional, chargeable extra? That doesn’t exactly sound like it would last five minutes in a phonecall to my credit card company, let alone a court of law.

    • Mokinokaro says:

      G2A is a weird site that skirts the law in a lot of ways. Their keys are mostly sold to them by third parties so they don’t give a damn about the source. essentially they fall under the laws governing digital trade goods which in a lot of countries (like their homeland of Poland) there are no guarantees on the products they sell.

      Basically their “too good to be true” discounts usually involve stolen keys in some way. They’re shady as all hell.

      • MaXimillion says:

        Basically their “too good to be true” discounts usually involve stolen keys in some way. They’re shady as all hell.

        Given how popular key resellers are and how rarely these types of revocations happen, I would think that the portion of keys that are stolen is fairly low. A lot of them come from regions with lower pricing, cheap physical copies, sales, pricing errors or coupons.

        • TacticalNuclearPenguin says:

          You don’t have to outright steal something in the most commonly used sense of the world to do something illegal. It doesn’t matter how “much” illegal is what they do when judged by whichever moral compass you might decide to use, it still is.

          There’s something going on if you buy GTA5 for PC for half the price ( it’ll probably be higher to be less suspicious and because people will still buy it ) on release day, even if this happen with “simple” regional price dodging.

          Let’s assume they never stole any single credit card and that they’re not doing anything “bad” for an Average joe’s moral compass, even in this scenario they operate in ways that still are decent grounds for slapping the unauthorized badge on them and by extension you are perfectly aware that you’re entering into “buyer’s beware” territory.

          Tl;Dr: It’s a risky trade, if something bad happens complaining about it is rather stupid.

          • Jimbo says:

            Ubisoft doesn’t get to decide who can and cannot re-sell copies of Ubisoft games though, so the whole ‘authorised retailer’ thing seems irrelevant. European law overrules them and authorises everyone (in the EU at least).

            The only transgression here is that the keys were allegedly obtained illegally. The re-selling of the software itself is not illegal and neither is buying copies in an EU region with low prices and selling copies in another EU region with higher prices (if that’s what’s happening here). There’s nothing wrong about that either, it’s just standard commerce.

          • TacticalNuclearPenguin says:

            They don’t get to decide, no, but they get to give you a really fine warning that it might not be a bad idea to follow. Like this time.

            Ultimately if your greed is enough that you decide to ignore how much of a money launderer G2A is, stomping your feet and closing your ears going la-la-la-la-la, it’s your prerogative, by all means keep buying from them.

            They are not innocent, they KNOW they are a good platform for thiefs and they won’t start to do any better now just because they got some extra heat. I also know they are launderers themselves but i can’t provide you hard proof, but i probably don’t need to since you likely know that yourself.

          • Jimbo says:

            Are you arguing that it’s the illegal activities which give Ubisoft the right to pull these keys, or that key re-selling alone would still be ‘wrong’ and grounds enough for Ubisoft to pull the keys?

        • stupid_mcgee says:

          Yes, a lot of key resellers take advantage of regional pricing differences. Which is great because every time you dumb assholes do this shit, it’s more ammo for publishers to enforce region-locking games.

      • pepperfez says:

        In the age of 90%-off Steam sales, what does “too good to be true” even mean?

        • Steve Catens says:

          Perhaps it refers to a conspicuous discount on a recently released triple A game long before such a game would typically start seeing major discounts in a legitimate storefront.

          Or maybe it comes bundled with a Miley Cyrus album.

          Who can say? It’s all unknowable.

      • Kordanor says:

        G2A is based in Hong Kong. I guess you mix that one up with Good old Games / gog.com which is based in poland but of course a legitimate vendor. I am pretty sure that Poland also has a tight legal system regarding that. It’s not exactly a newly industrialized country. ^^

  10. deadfolk says:

    Perhaps the lesson learned here is that the publishers should stop regional gouging and then us plebs will only buy from sellers on your (unpublished) list. Right Ubi? You’re with me on this, aren’t you?

    Hello?

    • Geebs says:

      Making games cheaper for regions with weaker currencies is gouging, now?

      • Jimbo says:

        They can charge what they like, but if they make one region significantly cheaper than another region they can’t really be surprised when people from the latter decide to buy from the former. Why wouldn’t they really? Especially if both regions exist within the same single economic market (the EU) and buying from another region is completely trivial.

      • Herbal Space Program says:

        You can’t use a global market when you see fit and throw a tantrum when users take advantage of the same global market.

        • Geebs says:

          Video games have never been cheaper, in real terms, than they are now. Plus, insist on a global flat rate and the regions that flat out can’t afford your game will pirate it en masse, onto their malware infested, cracked copies of Windows XP, because they can’t afford western prices.

          If we’re defining what you can’t do, you can’t bitch about how globalisation is screwing you when your quality of life is artificially inflated through cheap foreign labour and an artificially strong currency.

        • joa says:

          Those companies legally operate as businesses in all the markets they sell in; that’s how they are able to take advantage of a global market. You do not. If it is not illegal to buy from another market, at least it is quite unethical, especially when the companies are going to some effort to price things appropriately.

  11. suibhne says:

    Limiting refunds to purchasers of “G2A Shield” is rank bullshit. G2A failed to do its own due diligence on the product it then sold to consumers; end of story. The financial hit in this case should be entirely G2A’s. I will never, ever purchase from G2A again, no matter how often they’re described as “reputable” by major sources, and I hope they’re inundated with chargebacks from all the major credit card companies.

    • Somerled says:

      They don’t appear to be limiting refunds to purchasers of G2A Shield. Those with G2A Shield should already be covered, while those without need to go through an investigation first. At least, that was my impression after reading that a few times.

      • Mokinokaro says:

        They’ve never limited refunds to shield buyers. You just sometimes have to wait quite a while for them to sort things out. Friend had to wait a month once.

        There’s also a few times where they’ll state right on a product page they can’t give refunds on that product, probably due to drm.

  12. Retrofrank says:

    Using Origin, to buy a game, that needs U-Play……If that ain´t the stuff nightmares are made of.

  13. Dale Winton says:

    I got ACU removed from my uplay , Ubisoft should have honored these purchases and made sure it never happens again. I don’t think I’ll bother buying it again as it was/is rubbish or even bother trying to get a refund and after this I can’t see me buying another ubi game full stop

  14. Artist says:

    My gosh, people need to learn to differenciate!

    Theres “bad theft” – like selling keys bought with stolen credit cards or simply bought for cheap in other parts of the world- and “good theft” – like stealing more money from the pockets of the customers by rebranding gameplay elements as DLCs….
    Leeern the diffar(en)ce!

  15. GSGregory says:

    This is my thought since i first saw this. The resellers are basically digital pawn shops and if you compare what happened to a real pawn shop with physical items what ubi did is go to everyone that bought an item and took it back and then told them to take it up with the pawn shop.

  16. racccoon says:

    this sort of thing has been happening for years keys are kind of past it. they need to find a better system but even that will hacked..we all its seems.. have pirate blood. well i do, shiver me timbers, hoist the main sail, chill em n fill em. ha haaa have nice swim ya dirty dog ye that be right! under me boat ya go!.. you know that kind of thing.

  17. Raztaman says:

    Can’t feel sorry for anyone who had their games deactivated, serves ’em right for buying from G2A or any other dodgy reseller. They’re lucky they weren’t buying false keys to start with and actually got to play the game.

    In future, if you’re THAT bothered about price then purchase region free keys legitimately from foreign resellers (I don’t know if Ubi allows it but EA does) or just wait for a reduction in price.

  18. Shardz says:

    I haven’t touched a UbiGame since they screwed up Heroes VI. Never going back, never saying sorry.