Good Old Games built up a reputation as a great source for DRM-free, aging PC games, but their recent re-branding to simply GOG represents a shift in strategy as well: now they're offering DRM-free, newer PC games. They're poised to compete directly with Steam, a digital storefront popular for extreme and regular sales, among other things, and they believe that those discounts harm the industry more than they help it.
“Heavy discounts are bad for gamers,” GOG's managing director, Guillaume Rambourg, told RPS. “If a gamer buys a game he or she doesn’t want just because it’s on sale, they’re being trained to make bad purchases, and they’re also learning that games aren’t valuable. We all know gamers who spend more every month on games than they want to, just because there were too many games that were discounted too deeply. That’s not good for anyone.”
“We provide a lot of value in our games that goes beyond just the price. This is one of the key ways we fight against piracy, after all: providing gamers with more value than a pirate does. We actually generate more than half of our revenue from full-price sales, simply because we keep our prices reasonable in the first place. Our average sale tends to be around 40% – 50% off; that’s plenty of incentive to pick up a game if you’re interested or if you just think you might like to try it because you’re not sure about the game, but not some crazy 75% or 85% discount that damages the long-term value of a game.”
He may have a point, but on the other hand, we love getting great games at ridiculously cheap prices. It seems more like a problem with gamers than a problem with Steam. Impulse control has never been a strength of ours. Are you planning on getting more games from Steam or GOG now? Let us know in the comments or on Twitter.