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Steam and Region Pricing

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Why the hell wouldn't you do some research and check the prices for the different regions for new games and specials on Steam? With the recent classification issue of L4D2 my eyes have been opened. With the quick and easy way of circumventing region locked purchases I thought I would check to see what items are available in the US and the first thing that hit me was the price of MW2.

 

Now I don't think I will get this particular game (unless it just happens to be a spectacular SP game or dedicated servers suddenly appear in the ether) but how do Steam get off by pricing the AU version at US$89.99 (AU$99.07) and yet the US version is US$59.99 (AU$66.04).

 

I understand they are banking on the average Joe to purchase from their native location in most cases. Is there anything really different between the regions and the game content besides censorship? OS players can still connect and play on AU servers (but will get kicked for being an HPB or restricted due to IP addresses) and vice-versa as it generally the same code. I don't see why there is this financial gap.

 

Before you part with your hard earned, do a little research on the different regions for Steam and pick up a bargain or a special that may not be available in AU.

 

Any thoughts?

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That may be the case but still doesn't explain the gap between US and AU pricing.

 

Publishers: "The Ossies appear to be doing alright with the GFC, lets charge them a bit more, they won't know, they will be too busy chasing the dingoes away!"

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We get shafted on pretty much all digital media in this country. You know there's something wrong when half the time you can buy an overseas version of a game/dvd and still have it come in far cheaper than the locally delivered version, even with postage costs.

 

And then you have services like Steam, were there really isn't any excuse for price differences.

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Simply log in to the website and add the following onto the end of the URL '?cc=US' or '?cc=UK' to bypass the GeoIP sensing.

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I think the simple answer is they can... Prices have been around $99 for years, then upto $109 when GST came in. It is expected games will be around these prices, so why sell for $50 when everybody else is selling for $100.

 

If they tried selling for $200 then they would probarly go out of business almost over night. Put it at $100 as it is inline with expectations - people who have been waiting out for the game will often pay this. Then in 3-6 months time the prices goes down to $50 because it is no longer a 'hot' item. All business.

 

They can, so they will. If 'they' got enough pressure from people buying international and shipping over then they will soon step inline...

 

I still find it funny finding new games that normally sell for $99 on ebay for $19 - $29 upon release.

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I could not agree more, bnew.

 

I say down with region pricing...

I say down with Australia being treated like a backwater...

I say give an 18+ rating classification for games...

 

The list goes on...

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I still find it funny finding new games that normally sell for $99 on ebay for $19 - $29 upon release.

Yup, and this is why I buy most of my games on ebay. Recently got STALKER Clear Sky for $25 for example.

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Some locals like Dungeon Crawl do their best to undercut the big chains, even JB do a good job (NFS Shift for $79 instead of $99, for example).

 

But yes, they're overcharging us because they think that we don't know any different. The pricing has been set for so long that it's people's expectation that a game will cost around $99. Like that $200 pair of running shoes that cost $5 to make.

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I think it actually has more to do with us being UK lumped for whatever reason. While we're strong vs the dollar, the pound is always obscenely strong.

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The reason they (the publishers) are doing this, is to protect the bricks and mortar sales.

 

 

 

I know the guy at EB cringes every time I mention Steam.

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That's part of it, but really it goes beyond that.

 

The Australian divisions of most of the major distribtion companies are quite small and somewhat seperate from the North American parent companies. When you purchase something from Steam, very frequently while the figures reflect it's an Australian sale, the Australian devision may only recoup that money through the parent company rather than the way direct sales work in brick and mortar shops.

 

For a market as small as Australia, it's much better for the distributors to either sell directly or through brick and mortars. Using Steam isn't nearly as good for them.

 

I had quite a long chat with some folks about this over beers a few months back that work for one of the distributors. It made much more sense to me after that. I don't remember all the terminology they used, but I can paraphrase. Heh.

 

 

Between that and the strong pound... the issue is really from a consumer view point, we don't care. People that are net savvy tend to not really see international lines, the US has it, so should we. Or it's 4 bucks in the US, it should be a direct conversion.

 

Given the size of the US market compared to ours... it just doesn't work that way.

 

I wish it did.

Edited by GhostWhoWalks

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I know the guy at EB cringes every time I mention Steam.

Steam is only good for PC games, if you have a console its easier to go buy a disc so you can take it over to your friends house and play your halo3 co op or whatever console players are on atm.

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I'm one of the people who doesn't think the internet should be regionalised in that fashion,

 

Yes, I like to have local websites, but when dealing with global businesses, we shouldn't be penalised just because we're on our lonesome out here.

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I'm one of the people who doesn't think the internet should be regionalised in that fashion,

 

Yes, I like to have local websites, but when dealing with global businesses, we shouldn't be penalised just because we're on our lonesome out here.

I understand, and I sorta agree. At the same time though, we are. That's the harsh reality. That's why US films are often not relased for a year after they come out in the US, or more frequently 2-3 months.

 

That's why we pay more for electronics, games, books, CD's. It's not just games.

 

I can buy a hardback book in the US for around 17 dollars.

 

Over here we're lucky to even SEE hardbacks, we normally just get trade paper backs. And even the trades are 30 bucks, an actual hardback is usually closer to 35-40.

 

The Australian market is fucked so hard in so many ways, games is just a very tiny part of the larger problem.

 

It's the only part of Australia that I dislike. Having lived in the US for the first 24 years of my life, I grew accustomed to inexpensive quality entertainment.

 

 

For example, did you know that games from the US tend to have full color manuals? Over here they're almost without fail poorly reprinted black and white versions. The cost to color print them isn't possible here, just like the price to release hardbacks isn't worth it here.

 

We hates it. Oh yes, we do.

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yes, but the internet offers up no physical product, part of the reason the internet is so popular.

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By purchasing a game via the US steam store, does that mean we change all our personal details permanently or can we change them back after the purchase?

 

Also, would we have to change any game settings to play by default, on Aussie servers??

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Essentially only your Country field changes - and it can be changed back.

 

As for game servers, this should not be any difference as the game code would be exactly the same, hence you have OS players joining AU servers from time to time.

 

I have not seen any reports of mismatched game code as yet and I doubt it will ever surface.

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The geoIP thing doesn't work anyway... the transaction gets stopped when you try to pay, either with credit card or paypal, coz it references your address details.

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The geoIP thing doesn't work anyway... the transaction gets stopped when you try to pay, either with credit card or paypal, coz it references your address details.

Have you experienced this? I have had no trouble purchasing US versions via the US site.

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Why the hell wouldn't you do some research and check the prices for the different regions for new games and specials on Steam? With the recent classification issue of L4D2 my eyes have been opened. With the quick and easy way of circumventing region locked purchases I thought I would check to see what items are available in the US and the first thing that hit me was the price of MW2.

 

Now I don't think I will get this particular game (unless it just happens to be a spectacular SP game or dedicated servers suddenly appear in the ether) but how do Steam get off by pricing the AU version at US$89.99 (AU$99.07) and yet the US version is US$59.99 (AU$66.04).

 

I understand they are banking on the average Joe to purchase from their native location in most cases. Is there anything really different between the regions and the game content besides censorship? OS players can still connect and play on AU servers (but will get kicked for being an HPB or restricted due to IP addresses) and vice-versa as it generally the same code. I don't see why there is this financial gap.

 

Before you part with your hard earned, do a little research on the different regions for Steam and pick up a bargain or a special that may not be available in AU.

 

Any thoughts?

Consider it the “Having the best beaches” tax.

 

:P

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