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GOG's Rambourg: DRM Is Terrible, Sales Are Problematic

| 2 Jan 2014 13:42
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Maybe GOG will hold a 150% anti-sale.

GOG's entire policy can be summed up as offering good, DRM-free product at a reasonable price, and so far it's working fine, says GOG's MD Guillaume Rambourg. Trusting the customer isn't something that the industry is used to doing, but "trusting and respecting our gamers who are part of GOG.com remains at the core of how we approach our customers."

DRM just doesn't work, and is terrible as a concept; resistance from gamers is stronger than ever before, but GOG isn't worried that its fans will exploit its DRM free system. GOG customers tend to download a game only once, and when GOG launched a 30-day money back guarantee program, customer support queries only increased by a modest amount.

This, thinks Rambourg, is proof that GOG's customers aren't scamming the system. If they were, GOG would see multiple downloads per account, and have been overwhelmed by money back demands from chiselers looking to score a free game.

"Today gamers worldwide are not only paying our wages, they also helped us get Activision, Ubisoft, Atari, Square-Enix, and even Electronic Arts on-board," says Rambourg. "All in all, after slightly more than five years of existence, we've got more than 570 DRM-free classic titles for PC and Mac, and we've become the number one source for classic content revenue."

The bigger problem is sales. Rambourg acknowledges that discounts have their uses, and that companies have to adapt to the market to survive. Yet at the same time he's a little worried that gamers are beginning to believe "their hobby is worth roughly the same as an iPhone app." That's bound to hurt the industry in the long run, as gamers start refusing to pay full price in the expectation of a sale discount.

It's getting to the point, he jokes, where GOG might just run an anti-sale, "where, for a day, our entire catalog will be priced at 150 percent of original price with a big message splattered across our main page: PLAY THE ONES YOU OWN!"

Source: Ars Technica

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