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News EA's Origin gets bad-game refund option

Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by Gareth Halfacree, 20 Aug 2013.

  1. Tris

    Tris New Member

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    I agree utterly, and tried that exact argument when attempting to get a refund from Steam. In my case they claims that a) Regulations don't apply to digital products and b) Installing the item is synonymous with unpackaging / using a physical item, thus invalidating any right to return.
    I wasn't convinced by either argument given I was requesting a refund on the basis that it was unfit for purpose (bug riddled, frustrating entertainment product is clearly unfit), but at that point it was obvious they weren't going to budge and I didn't really see any avenues of approach left to me.
     
  2. Stanley Tweedle

    Stanley Tweedle NO VR NO PLAY

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    Obviously brought about because of Sim Shitty complaints.
     
  3. dactone

    dactone dact-one

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    ''(£45 when I can buy the DVD version for £30)'' That's why I never buy a just released game ever.
     
  4. Gareth Halfacree

    Gareth Halfacree WIIGII! Staff Administrator Super Moderator Moderator

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    The seven-day return period is actually part of the Distance Selling Regulations of the Consumer Protection Regulations. The DSR was introduced in 2000 to address the growing trend for consumers to buy things online, and is designed to give them the same opportunity to examine goods as they would have had they visited a physical shop. That's where it ends, though: you can examine the goods just as you could in a shop, which means no breaking seals and certainly no using the item. Get it out of its packaging and give it a whirl, and you've just lost your right of return under the DSR. Software, in fact, is called out specifically in Clause 13(1)(d): '[Unless the parties have agreed otherwise, the consumer will not have the right to cancel the contract by giving notice of cancellation pursuant to regulation 10 in respect of contracts—] for the supply of audio or video recordings or computer software if they are unsealed by the consumer.'

    Obviously, there are no seals or packaging with a downloadable game - but would a shop allow you to install the game on your PC, try it out, then return it within seven days if you didn't like it? Once, perhaps, but not these days - and so the DSR don't apply either. If the game was substantially unlike what you were promised, however - as would be the case if you bought a certain zombie-themed survival game and discovered it was missing major features and bugged to all hell - you could request a refund under the Sale of Goods Act as the item in question being unfit for purpose. Unlike the DSR, there's no real time limit for a claim under SOGA - although if you tried to claim a refund on a washing machine you bought in 1995 and have used ever since, good luck: the courts look for "reasonable" claims, like something dying just out of warranty but within what you would expect to be a fair lifespan for an item of its category and price.

    TL;DR: You can't return a game under DSR, but you might be able to under SOGA.
     
  5. AlienwareAndy

    AlienwareAndy New Member

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    Well I'm glad to hear it tbh.

    After paying £60 for Pit Fighter on the SNES and realising it wasn't finished I've carried that annoyance. I don't forget things easily and being told at the shop that I couldn't have a refund because I had opened it I've always been very wary.

    TBH that was no different to buying say, a toy horse, only to find that it was missing a leg so didn't do what it was supposed to.

    But game producers get away with it far too much IMO. Why is it that the software industry is loaded with companies taking stupid fines instead of being honest? crazy.

    I still download 'evaluation copies' of some games because they either don't have a review or the reviewers have clearly had their palms greased with silver.

    Even GTAIV to me was a complete con. I got all excited, got on the train to Bognor Regis, paid £39.99 for a copy of it then had to wait about three years before I finally had the hardware to make it playable.

    I won't ever make that mistake again tbh.
     
  6. Gareth Halfacree

    Gareth Halfacree WIIGII! Staff Administrator Super Moderator Moderator

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    Oh, absolutely - that would be a perfect example of something being unfit for purpose under SOGA. Trouble is in convincing the shop staff of that fact - something immeasurably easier these days: back then, you would have had to rely on a magazine writing a feature on how badly broken the game was to have documentary evidence of its unsuitability; these days, all the evidence you could ever want a is a quick Google away.
    That, on the other hand, is unlikely to be a reason to return under SOGA - assuming that your hardware didn't meet the requirements printed clearly on the back of the box. If it didn't, then it's caveat emptor - buyer beware. If, on the other hand, it did meet the requirements and was still unplayable, then you've got an argument of false advertising or unfit for purpose.

    None of this, of course, legitimises downloading pirated games. If you won't buy a game without trying a demo first, and there's no demo, then don't buy the game. If publishers see that not releasing a demo actively hurts sales, they'll start releasing demos; if they see that not releasing a demo drives piracy, however, they'll just work to add yet more consumer-hurting layers of DRM into the mix in the hope that this time it'll work. Alternatively, take up EA's offer and try-before-you-buy without the parrot on your shoulder.
     
  7. DriftCarl

    DriftCarl Member

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    EA recently has done the proper thing with relation to problems.
    Sim City was full of issues, this is true, but EA actually gave us a free game, and not one that was 5 years old, it was actually only a few months since it was released.
    Humble Bundle was brilliant too, although heavily discounted bundles is nothing new or specific to origin. It really has injected a huge amount of new players into BF3.
    I will look for this guarantee on future games now and will more likley purchase via origin than other means. I did make good use of the google play returns and saved myself some cash with games that simply sucked arse.
     
  8. BradShort

    BradShort Familyman - Fraggin when allowed :P

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    I applaud this initiative but I hope it does not backfire else we will never see the like of it again.

    My concern is that PC games in particular are very buggy on release, due to the huge range of compatibility that is required. Games are usually patched and turn out ok, but I worry that sales will drop if consumers mistake compatibility issues with "bad workmanship" and "Game Design"
     
  9. Guest-16

    Guest-16 Guest

    This will actually make me use Origin.

    If only I had bought GTA 4 on Origin as well. Stupid Steam sale. :duh:
     
  10. fooboi

    fooboi New Member

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    That has to be the dumbest comparison ever. The only reason your steam keys for that game work is because those games are published by EA.
     

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