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Motion Twin / Evil Empire have announced that Dead Cells is increasing in price in Argentina & Turkey, as it seems too many people were taking advantage of the cheaper prices from other countries.

This is an issue that we've seen come up before, with people working around Steam's regional pricing to access lower prices elsewhere.

Writing in an announcement on Steam, the developers noted how these two countries have made up a "significant" amount of their sales over the last year but this has not come with an increase in the amount of players there. Usually, developers can see that the percentage of sales in a country matches up to the player count in that country but in this case for Argentina & Turkey "their % of total sales is 3-4x the amount of the % of their total players".

The developer thinks that "it is extremely likely that people are changing their region to take advantage of a 70-90% reduction in price". Dead Cells is not exactly an expensive game when you look at what's available on Steam, something they touch on in the post, and it is regularly discounted too so they say "this is impacting us so heavily".

A sad day for people buying it legitimately in Argentina & Turkey, and another issue smaller developers have to deal with.

What do you think to this issue? Let us know in the comments.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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20 comments
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pb 19 Aug
> "this is impacting us so heavily"

ok, but what if people who go to such extreme measures are from other poor countries that *don't* have regional pricing and instead are paying "regular" prices in usd or euro? and it's their only realistic alternative to just pirating the game?


Last edited by pb on 19 August 2022 at 11:02 am UTC
CAVR 19 Aug
Let's not forget that stupid time when the EU sued Valve and other game companies because they were trying to protect the viability of regional pricing by geo-blocking games:

https://www.gamesindustry.biz/geo-blocking-in-the-games-industry-a-closer-look-at-valves-ec-fine

Without the regional pricing, games in my country are getting ridiculously expensive (like almost a third of a monthly minimum wage), so it's painful to watch nearly every major AAA publisher dropping the support for regional pricing. Now even some indies are starting to do it too. I wouldn't be surprised to see a significant resurgence of piracy in developing nations like mine, which Steam had helped to ease a lot when regional pricing was almost universally adopted.
I think it'll lead to more pirating, still sad for the people trying to purchase a legal copy. I'd prefer they had a legal copy than find a way to pirate a copy. More people might turn to (possibly illegal) key selling sites to get it cheaper too.
Lachu 19 Aug
Any kind of DRM is bad in roots, but I used to call Regional Restrictions: "Robin Hood Strategy". It is an strategy to maximize income, but also to help poor people. We maximize income, cause more players buy our products (of course by price they want/be able to pay), but players (as I said) could be able to buy license/right to play game.
fagnerln 19 Aug
I'm Brazilian, a third world country. We are living hard times, it's becoming harder and harder to get games as new releases are almost 1:1 to us dollar, but we have a healthier economy in comparison to Argentina.

I understand that I can't buy new games, I just have priorities, but they hardly have money to buy basic things.

So I agree that isn't time to games follow the argentinian coin, this creates a huge exploits.

Look, sadly I will reach to politics. They have a "fat state", too much populism and less freedom, which increases taxes and inflation.

Thanks to Linux now I praise the freedom much more than anything, and to be free we need LESS state. Less bandits stealing our money.

I saw a lot of people here wanting intervention from government to control pricing, anti trust measures or whatever. All against freedom, just likes the "free" part.

Again, I'm a 3rd world guy which lives in a populist country.
Quoting: pb> "this is impacting us so heavily"

ok, but what if people who go to such extreme measures are from other poor countries that *don't* have regional pricing and instead are paying "regular" prices in usd or euro? and it's their only realistic alternative to just pirating the game?

Let's be honest here, it's not what's happening : if only people that wouldn't be able to afford them in their own region pricing did that, devs wouldn't do that. They wouldn't see a ×3 or ×4 the playerbase of that region.

Mesh that with sales, and I'm even starting to doubt we would see much higher than a ×2 (like ×2.something, OK I guess).

Another thing to note, is that, an history of devs' comments would point out that pirating the game ends up a lesser evil of just blatantly ripping off the devs, be it that way or worst the G2A way.

But knowing this history and people I know that aren't as much gameheads as I am, they will do that to pay less over paying what they can. Sure, there is a tiny bit less rip off here as it's not going G2A way. But the whole thing mostly sit on the terrible fucking shitty idea that people want games dirt cheap.

At least piracy may get you to buy it full price later, buying it 90% off by region abuse is just shitting in the cook pot of vidya. Because it's not just the dev that's getting screwed.

Games are already underpriced as hell (considering the amount of manhours put into those), and the market saturation doesn't help in anyway, but lowballing the price in everyway possible by all the people that can afford them (already underpriced) only push a cheaper price to grab more attention, to do so costs are cut and the whole quality suffer, so people want to pay less and so fucking on.

Truth to the matter is : broke people aren't the issue here.
denyasis 19 Aug
Quoting: pb> "this is impacting us so heavily"

ok, but what if people who go to such extreme measures are from other poor countries that *don't* have regional pricing and instead are paying "regular" prices in usd or euro? and it's their only realistic alternative to just pirating the game?

Assuming some level of reason here, but if they consider thier analysis complete, the fact the can tell the point of sale vs the point of play would seem to indicate they can do that globally. They can likely infer what populations are buying the game by altering the region (look for the inverse, higher rates of play with lower rates of sales).

Wether they did this, we don't know, and if they did, we don't know the results or what discussions they had internally about the change. All we know is what they say, it's significant enough to be hurting thier income.
Tuxee 19 Aug
Quoting: pb> "this is impacting us so heavily"

ok, but what if people who go to such extreme measures are from other poor countries that *don't* have regional pricing and instead are paying "regular" prices in usd or euro? and it's their only realistic alternative to just pirating the game?

No such thing. Humble Bundle registered illegal copies of their one Dollar/one Euro bundles. There might be some "in need" using this "workaround", but I am absolutely convinced that the vast majority are people just feeling good, that they could rip off someone else.
Valve and only Valve is THE guilty of this situation.

Valve must eliminate right now the online availability of Steam wallet codes in Argentinian and Turkish currencies.
To require credit cards from the country you are is the only way to sort this.
Quoting: Tuxee
Quoting: pb> "this is impacting us so heavily"

ok, but what if people who go to such extreme measures are from other poor countries that *don't* have regional pricing and instead are paying "regular" prices in usd or euro? and it's their only realistic alternative to just pirating the game?

No such thing. Humble Bundle registered illegal copies of their one Dollar/one Euro bundles. There might be some "in need" using this "workaround", but I am absolutely convinced that the vast majority are people just feeling good, that they could rip off someone else.
I highly doubt mal-intent, I look at it from the optimistic viewpoint, if people don't get the game for the price they want (by changing regions), they likely wouldn't buy it at all and just pirate it (or use G2A which results in the same amount of money for the developers, 0) in which case rather than the developer getting some money, they get nothing, although I do agree devs deserve a lot more money for those games, if they need to choose between 10% of revenue vs 0% of revenue from their recent sales, they'd probably like the 10%, they should get 100% of the revenue from the region but unfortunately this isn't the world we live in, people are going to pay what they feel the game is worth or not pay for it at all, who knows, now that gas prices are going down to under $4, people might have more spending potential.


Last edited by JordanPlayz158 on 19 August 2022 at 4:14 pm UTC
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