GOG Returning "To Its Roots" After Regional Pricing Backlash

GOG Returning "To Its Roots" After Regional Pricing Backlash

GOG logo

GOG will has reaffirmed its desire to "fight for games with flat worldwide pricing."

Last month GOG rattled a few gamer's cages when it revealed that it would, to an extent, be abandoning its standard of fair and equal pricing in favor of a regional model that would lead to different prices for some games depending on where you live. This didn't go over too well with many of the site's customers who, over the past few weeks, have left thousands of comments with expressing their unhappiness with the move. That in mind, GOG has recently revealed it will "getting back to [its] roots" and will take steps to restore its practice of "flat worldwide pricing."

"We're not perfect, we're exploring new frontiers, and we make mistakes," said GOG's Marcin Iwinski and Guilliaume Rambourg in a joint statement. "We thought DRM-Free was so important that you'd prefer we bring you more DRM-Free games and fair price was less critical and that it could be sacrificed in some cases... We didn't listen and we let you down."

Hoping to make up for their mistake Iwinski and Rambourg said that GOG going forward will "continue to fight for game with flat worldwide pricing." In turn, in cases where the company is "required to have regional prices" it will make up for it by offering free game codes and, eventually, store credit to affected customers. To help give is customers more choice it will also be implementing new options that will let individuals choose between paying in their local currency or in US dollars if they prefer. It's Iwinski and Rambourg's hope that these steps will help GOG "remain true to its values" while also offering "the best of DRM-free gaming with fair price."

Source: GOG

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Fair enough. Good on them for saying something about it.

Meanwhile, on Steam and Origin "games are more expensive for you? Tough shit, deal with it fucker."

Props to GoG for trying to make it right.

No company is perfect but GoG goes above and beyond to try and be that. At this point if a game is on Steam or any other platform as well as GoG, I go to GoG first simply because of being DRM-less, a reasonable refund policy and generally caring for consumers.

I always think highly of people who fuck up and then admit they fuck up and try to fix it. It takes a special kind of character.

Flat rate pricing isn't fair and equal.

I just learned the other day that the min wage in Australia is close to $18 while our min wage in the US is $7.25. That means that an equal price for both countries would see Australians getting a $20 game in a little over an hour of work while in the US it would take us 3 hours. In short, it would make the game 3 times as expensive in the US.

I guess the squeaky wheel gets the grease though and there are no shortage of Australians squeaking about having to pay $100 for a new release.

I'd rather have a bigger DRM-free game library on GOG, regional pricing or no, than worry about only a couple dollars worth, like some sad miser.

The initial compromise of free games with those euro priced games on GOG, was already much better than any other online shop and now we're stuck with regional pricing, without the freebies, but WITH DRM, so we only lose, thanks to the cheapskates.

WeepingAngels:
Flat rate pricing isn't fair and equal.

I just learned the other day that the min wage in Australia is close to $18 while our min wage in the US is $7.25. That means that an equal price for both countries would see Australians getting a $20 game in a little over an hour of work while in the US it would take us 3 hours. In short, it would make the game 3 times as expensive in the US.

I guess the squeaky wheel gets the grease though and there are no shortage of Australians squeaking about having to pay $100 for a new release.

You need to take cost of living into account as well. Just like the cost of living is higher in NYC than in Iowa, with NYC also having a higher minimum wage, the same applies to Australia.

Comparing the entire countries, rent is nearly 60% higher in Australia, and most other goods and services are more than 40% more expensive:
http://www.numbeo.com/cost-of-living/compare_countries_result.jsp?country1=United+States&country2=Australia

UNHchabo:

WeepingAngels:
Flat rate pricing isn't fair and equal.

I just learned the other day that the min wage in Australia is close to $18 while our min wage in the US is $7.25. That means that an equal price for both countries would see Australians getting a $20 game in a little over an hour of work while in the US it would take us 3 hours. In short, it would make the game 3 times as expensive in the US.

I guess the squeaky wheel gets the grease though and there are no shortage of Australians squeaking about having to pay $100 for a new release.

You need to take cost of living into account as well. Just like the cost of living is higher in NYC than in Iowa, with NYC also having a higher minimum wage, the same applies to Australia.

Comparing the entire countries, rent is nearly 60% higher in Australia, and most other goods and services are more than 40% more expensive:
http://www.numbeo.com/cost-of-living/compare_countries_result.jsp?country1=United+States&country2=Australia

Right, when you get paid more, the cost of living is higher and games are not exempt nor should they be. Your link says:

Consumer Prices in Australia are 43.72% higher than in United States

Well that's awesome for them considering their min wage is more than 100% higher than the US.

Now we are looking at GOG games being 3 times more expensive in the US than in Australia. Is that what you would call fair and equal pricing?

StewShearer:
GOG Returning "To Its Roots" After Regional Pricing Backlash

GOG will has reaffirmed its desire to "fight for games with flat worldwide pricing."

This didn't go over too well with many of the site's customers who, over the past few weeks, have left thousands of comments with expressing their unhappiness with the move. That in mind, GOG has recently revealed it will "getting back to [its] roots" and will take steps to restore its practice of "flat worldwide pricing."

And they are going to do exactly what about that? Seriously people... Regional pricing is not something retailers want anymore than you do...it's something that is forced upon them by various governments. You want to set up shop in a given country.. you have to play by that country's rules. Even Amazon can't get around that.

STeam can't get around it either. IT's not like they pocket the price difference, that price difference goes straight into the tax coffers. They'd be happy with flat pricing. It would simplify their bookkeeping tremendously.

WeepingAngels:

UNHchabo:

WeepingAngels:
Flat rate pricing isn't fair and equal.

I just learned the other day that the min wage in Australia is close to $18 while our min wage in the US is $7.25. That means that an equal price for both countries would see Australians getting a $20 game in a little over an hour of work while in the US it would take us 3 hours. In short, it would make the game 3 times as expensive in the US.

I guess the squeaky wheel gets the grease though and there are no shortage of Australians squeaking about having to pay $100 for a new release.

You need to take cost of living into account as well. Just like the cost of living is higher in NYC than in Iowa, with NYC also having a higher minimum wage, the same applies to Australia.

Comparing the entire countries, rent is nearly 60% higher in Australia, and most other goods and services are more than 40% more expensive:
http://www.numbeo.com/cost-of-living/compare_countries_result.jsp?country1=United+States&country2=Australia

Right, when you get paid more, the cost of living is higher and games are not exempt nor should they be. Your link says:

Consumer Prices in Australia are 43.72% higher than in United States

Well that's awesome for them considering their min wage is more than 100% higher than the US.

Now we are looking at GOG games being 3 times more expensive in the US than in Australia. Is that what you would call fair and equal pricing?

Please show me Min wage in equal job with your tips (as tips aren't really a thing over here).
This would be a number that interests me.

Also get 2 cities in the "top 10 most expensive places to live in the world". Its our only strong point, and its not something to gloat about -_-

Edit: It would be also interesting to see 2 similiar jobs in non-tipping environments and how they compare for min wage and non-min wage. Comparing standard/averages prices amongst similiar jobs (bank tellers for example).

WeepingAngels:
Right, when you get paid more, the cost of living is higher and games are not exempt nor should they be. Your link says:

Consumer Prices in Australia are 43.72% higher than in United States

Well that's awesome for them considering their min wage is more than 100% higher than the US.

Now we are looking at GOG games being 3 times more expensive in the US than in Australia. Is that what you would call fair and equal pricing?

My point was merely that you can't complain that another area has higher minimum wage without taking into account their cost of living as well, otherwise you're comparing apples to oranges. Once you start making fair comparisons, then you can start arguing that minimum wage should be raised in a particular region.

Using my previous examples, despite New York having a higher minimum wage than Iowa, maybe it still needs to be raised even further in New York, and maybe the cost of living in Iowa is low enough that it doesn't need to be raised there.

Good for GoG, sometimes not being the big guy is a good thing for everybody.

Irridium:
Meanwhile, on Steam and Origin "games are more expensive for you? Tough shit, deal with it fucker."

With the Titanfall release I've again been confronted with lots and lots of people using VPNs and other underhand tricks to get games from international versions of stores looking for the lowest price.

This happened for BF4 and seems to be becoming increasingly common, I wonder how much money EA stand to 'lose' from all those people paying 20 instead of 45 and if it makes a significant dent in their sales revenue versus the projections.

Whether it's stuff like this or when Spore became the most pirated game of the year it appears to me that when publishers take a 'deal with it' attitude, the public at large does exactly that and the publisher never comes off best. It's had an interesting effect on official channels too, Titanfall is already at 30 (less with a discount code) on some online stores (proper Euro based ones) and it's not even out yet.

fix-the-spade:
Good for GoG, sometimes not being the big guy is a good thing for everybody.

Irridium:
Meanwhile, on Steam and Origin "games are more expensive for you? Tough shit, deal with it fucker."

With the Titanfall release I've again been confronted with lots and lots of people using VPNs and other underhand tricks to get games from international versions of stores looking for the lowest price.

This happened for BF4 and seems to be becoming increasingly common, I wonder how much money EA stand to 'lose' from all those people paying 20 instead of 45 and if it makes a significant dent in their sales revenue versus the projections.

Whether it's stuff like this or when Spore became the most pirated game of the year it appears to me that when publishers take a 'deal with it' attitude, the public at large does exactly that and the publisher never comes off best. It's had an interesting effect on official channels too, Titanfall is already at 30 (less with a discount code) on some online stores (proper Euro based ones) and it's not even out yet.

i doubt that people used VPNs for titanfall to get it for the cheapest price. it's not region locked, so you can just merrily buy and activate a key from the CIS dirt cheap with no problem.
people did, however, use VPNs a lot to play the game a few days earlier, but no one is losing a single cent over that.

Glad to see GoG going the other way on that; regional pricing isn't going to change on its own: it'll take a much larger consumer effort.

On an aside, there were a lot of typos in that article.

WeepingAngels:
Flat rate pricing isn't fair and equal.

I just learned the other day that the min wage in Australia is close to $18 while our min wage in the US is $7.25. That means that an equal price for both countries would see Australians getting a $20 game in a little over an hour of work while in the US it would take us 3 hours. In short, it would make the game 3 times as expensive in the US.

I guess the squeaky wheel gets the grease though and there are no shortage of Australians squeaking about having to pay $100 for a new release.

"The national minimum wage is currently $16.37 per hour or $622.20 per 38 hour week."

[Source: http://www.fairwork.gov.au/resources/fact-sheets/conditions-of-employment/pages/minimum-wages-fact-sheet.aspx#current-national-minimum-wage-order]

This is actually just the mandated minimum wage for those over the age of 18, without an arranged award by their employer. In truth, with most employers preferring award wages, the minimum wage is closer to around $15 an hour. So whoever gave you that figure has their facts straight up wrong.

This also doesn't take into account Australia's MUCH higher tax rate for average earners of $3,572 + 37c for each dollar over $37,000. With an average yearly wage of $50,000, you do the math.
[Source: http://www.ato.gov.au/Rates/Individual-income-tax-rates/]

And as noted by others, cost of living is much higher here BECAUSE of our higher wages. It's all in line generally. However the price markup of upwards of 60% on games alone (based entirely on exchange rates and accounting for inflation) is not justifiable in the slightest except as gouging. So much so that the the Consumer Commission here in Australia brought several major publishers to bear on why this differential exists. They found it was simply a matter of greed.

So yes, while wages ARE higher here, it is NOT in a vaccuum, and it STILL does not account for the massive price differential of upwards of 60%.

No, flat price worldwide is fair. Because no matter where you are in the world, all you pay is the exchange. And THAT is why people are happy about this.

You know by disallowing regional pricing they are limiting their library, as publishers insist on regional pricing. I personally would prefer a larger available library than no regional pricing.

1Life0Continues:

WeepingAngels:
Flat rate pricing isn't fair and equal.

I just learned the other day that the min wage in Australia is close to $18 while our min wage in the US is $7.25. That means that an equal price for both countries would see Australians getting a $20 game in a little over an hour of work while in the US it would take us 3 hours. In short, it would make the game 3 times as expensive in the US.

I guess the squeaky wheel gets the grease though and there are no shortage of Australians squeaking about having to pay $100 for a new release.

"The national minimum wage is currently $16.37 per hour or $622.20 per 38 hour week."

[Source: http://www.fairwork.gov.au/resources/fact-sheets/conditions-of-employment/pages/minimum-wages-fact-sheet.aspx#current-national-minimum-wage-order]

This is actually just the mandated minimum wage for those over the age of 18, without an arranged award by their employer. In truth, with most employers preferring award wages, the minimum wage is closer to around $15 an hour. So whoever gave you that figure has their facts straight up wrong.

This also doesn't take into account Australia's MUCH higher tax rate for average earners of $3,572 + 37c for each dollar over $37,000. With an average yearly wage of $50,000, you do the math.
[Source: http://www.ato.gov.au/Rates/Individual-income-tax-rates/]

And as noted by others, cost of living is much higher here BECAUSE of our higher wages. It's all in line generally. However the price markup of upwards of 60% on games alone (based entirely on exchange rates and accounting for inflation) is not justifiable in the slightest except as gouging. So much so that the the Consumer Commission here in Australia brought several major publishers to bear on why this differential exists. They found it was simply a matter of greed.

So yes, while wages ARE higher here, it is NOT in a vaccuum, and it STILL does not account for the massive price differential of upwards of 60%.

No, flat price worldwide is fair. Because no matter where you are in the world, all you pay is the exchange. And THAT is why people are happy about this.

You quote the national minimum wage, but that min. wage is higher in certain parts of Australia. In any case it is still more than double the min. wage in the US.

BigTuk:

StewShearer:
GOG Returning "To Its Roots" After Regional Pricing Backlash

GOG will has reaffirmed its desire to "fight for games with flat worldwide pricing."

This didn't go over too well with many of the site's customers who, over the past few weeks, have left thousands of comments with expressing their unhappiness with the move. That in mind, GOG has recently revealed it will "getting back to [its] roots" and will take steps to restore its practice of "flat worldwide pricing."

And they are going to do exactly what about that? Seriously people... Regional pricing is not something retailers want anymore than you do...it's something that is forced upon them by various governments. You want to set up shop in a given country.. you have to play by that country's rules. Even Amazon can't get around that.

STeam can't get around it either. IT's not like they pocket the price difference, that price difference goes straight into the tax coffers. They'd be happy with flat pricing. It would simplify their bookkeeping tremendously.

Regional pricing has nothing to do with local governments. It is the publishers who want to charge what the market will bear in order to maximize their revenue.

Personally I have nothing against that.

GOG realized its mistake and went on and apologized and went back to normal pricing. Had this happened with any other publisher they would have strut around confused, tell us that we "just dont get it" and that we should "Deal with it" and continue to rape us with prices.

Amir Kondori:
You know by disallowing regional pricing they are limiting their library, as publishers insist on regional pricing. I personally would prefer a larger available library than no regional pricing.

then you are part of the problem why we cant have fair trade. as long as you are unable to stand for equal treatment - there wont be any. Its like those people that preorder games liek colonial marines and then go on to preorder the same publishers games again.

WeepingAngels:
Flat rate pricing isn't fair and equal.

I just learned the other day that the min wage in Australia is close to $18 while our min wage in the US is $7.25. That means that an equal price for both countries would see Australians getting a $20 game in a little over an hour of work while in the US it would take us 3 hours. In short, it would make the game 3 times as expensive in the US.

I guess the squeaky wheel gets the grease though and there are no shortage of Australians squeaking about having to pay $100 for a new release.

Yes it is. Just because your economy is worse than another countries does not mean they have to pay more. Just because they CAN pay more does not mean they should they should pay just as much for the same product. In fact in cases like Titanfall they are getting inferior product - no local servers exist.

I'm about ready to shout my love for CDPR from the f***ing rooftops at this point. (For those that are not aware, GOG is a subsidiary of CD Projekt Red, the Witcher developers).

To me at least, they just keep cementing their image as gaming industry "good guys" by focusing on few, high quality titles, and showing a respect for their customers that is ridiculously above and beyond anything you see from big budget developers today.

Of course, in a perfect world, this would be expected of everyone, but it's good to see a company showing respect for their customers, actually listening to the backlash, and going so far as to write an official "we were wrong" apology.

WeepingAngels:
Flat rate pricing isn't fair and equal.

I just learned the other day that the min wage in Australia is close to $18 while our min wage in the US is $7.25. That means that an equal price for both countries would see Australians getting a $20 game in a little over an hour of work while in the US it would take us 3 hours. In short, it would make the game 3 times as expensive in the US.

I guess the squeaky wheel gets the grease though and there are no shortage of Australians squeaking about having to pay $100 for a new release.

That goes the other way around too. In my country minimal wage is between 1 and 2 dollars, and on steam and origin games are 20% more expensive than in US. How's that for fair and equal?

StewShearer:
In turn, in cases where the company is "required to have regional prices" it will make up for it by offering free game codes and, eventually, store credit to affected customers.

Or, you know, they could just tell the publishers of those games where they can stick it, like they've been doing since the beginning to every publisher who refused to sell their game without DRM.

Strazdas:
GOG realized its mistake and went on and apologized and went back to normal pricing. Had this happened with any other publisher they would have strut around confused, tell us that we "just dont get it" and that we should "Deal with it" and continue to rape us with prices.

Amir Kondori:
You know by disallowing regional pricing they are limiting their library, as publishers insist on regional pricing. I personally would prefer a larger available library than no regional pricing.

then you are part of the problem why we cant have fair trade. as long as you are unable to stand for equal treatment - there wont be any. Its like those people that preorder games liek colonial marines and then go on to preorder the same publishers games again.

In your view I am part of the problem, in my view your view is a problem. I don't think it is fair that a producer of a good can't decide what to sell that good for in any given market. I don't think it is fair that I have to have a smaller library of DRM-free games because people like you think it is some moral outrage that companies sell the same good for different prices in different markets.
If the good was priced too high for a given market people wouldn't buy it. In the Internet age people can get the price of another market if they really want to, even from GOG.com.
What you call free trade I call one step away from price fixing.

Amir Kondori:

In your view I am part of the problem, in my view your view is a problem. I don't think it is fair that a producer of a good can't decide what to sell that good for in any given market. I don't think it is fair that I have to have a smaller library of DRM-free games because people like you think it is some moral outrage that companies sell the same good for different prices in different markets.
If the good was priced too high for a given market people wouldn't buy it. In the Internet age people can get the price of another market if they really want to, even from GOG.com.
What you call free trade I call one step away from price fixing.

there is only one market - the games market (for the game maker, obviuosly). any segregation is artificial and is only created to price-gouge and basicalyl be greedy.
Yes, its not fair that you have a smaller library. the companies that refuse to sell for same price are to blame here. they are at fault for not playing fair and being a greedy bastards. Idealy, this would be regulated by law, but in abscense of that moral outrage is all we got.

 

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