Here’s a brilliant moment of clarity in a realm that is consistently addled with half-truths and vague implications that can’t be proven one way or another: stop pre-ordering video games.
Just stop it. In the era of digital downloads that continue to bring confusion about what consumer rights actually are when they purchase a license to use the software, a smattering of bonuses simply isn’t enough to validate the purpose of pre-ordering in the modern era. Yet again, a large number of users are learning that the hard way.
Guerrilla Games has finally released the hotly anticipated PC port of Horizon Zero Dawn onto Steam (and Epic), and it’s frankly failing to impress. Issues with framerate and temperatures, crashing to desktop, and general instability is plaguing early-purchasers of Guerrilla’s first massive title on the PC scene.
Frustrating, yet it happens; that’s why there are consumer protections in place on many PC platforms; even Epic Games Store offers a refund option, and Steam does as well.
We’ll gloss over that these protections were added entirely due to Europe taking consumer rights seriously, as American legislation couldn’t find their way out of a wet paper bag without a lobbyist enticing them with wads of money, but there are refunds.
Thanks for all your support during our Horizon Zero Dawn Complete Edition PC launch yesterday! We’re aware that some players have been experiencing crashes and other issues, which we are actively investigating. We will update you as soon as we have more news!
— Guerrilla (@Guerrilla) August 8, 2020
There are also very specific rules pertaining to them: Steam outlines that the purchase needs to be within two weeks of the refund, with less than two hours played.
In spite of this, multiple users have begun popping up on Reddit and Twitter stating that, despite being well within the rules, their refunds are being flat-out denied by Valve. The issue seems to stem from the point of purchase (the pre-order) occurring fourteen days prior to the launch of the title, meaning that it is technically out of the realm of two-weeks since the purchase date.
Yet there has been a multitude of times when Steam has offered refunds to titles that were preordered; Doom Eternal being the most recent case when id Software updated their title that managed to lockout a surprising number of paying customers.
If you’re one that has been stuck trying to get a refund from your pre-order, Guerrilla Games has stated that they’re aware, and actively tracking, the vast number of issues that are currently plaguing the title. Further, they’ve stated that they are dedicated to ensuring the best possible experience for every one of their consumers.
Whether or not you have the patience to wait will be the sole defining factor on how frustrated you can feel about being hamstrung between the metaphorical rock and a hard place while you wait to continue your adventure with Aloy.