GOG may add Early Access games, but it would approach Early Access through its own curated model.
GOG, the DRM-free marketplace that specializes in classic games, could have an Early Access model on the way, CD Projekt co-founder Marcin Iwinski told Eurogamer. Iwinski, whose company owns and operates GOG, said changes would have to be made to make Early Access work with GOG.
“We’re obviously looking at it,” Iwinski said. “As you know our concept is different; first of all it’s DRM-free, and second, it’s curated. I’m often lost in a lot of stores – apps being my example today. Or even Steam. I don’t know what’s happening; there’s hundreds of releases a month, and I really believe – and our community’s clearly showing that – there is a place for a platform which is choosing the stuff.”
Were GOG to add Early Access games, it would be done under the spirit of GOG. Early Access titles would be have to be selected and examined before being available for sale on GOG. Iwinski also said that GOG would be “responsible in front of the gamer for what they’re buying on GOG.”
Recently Valve refunded customers who had purchased Early Access title Earth: Year 2066 on the grounds of the developers using dishonest marketing. Customers are at a risk when they buy unfinished games, and GOG plans to offer protection.
“If you’re unhappy and [the developer is] constantly updating it, that’s fine,” Iwinski said, “but if you’re unhappy and they just took your money and ran away like typical hit and run… There is somebody who has to be on the hook for it, and I really think this should be the case. Definitely not every game should be permitted, and consumers should have an option to opt out if they’re really unhappy.”