Anno 1800 Pulled from Steam!
I was really crossing my fingers that this wouldn’t happen with this title, sadly, it has been proven so many times that when there is money involved that no one on the “suit” level will shed a tear on how their customers will feel or how they will react. For them, it is a calculated risk, a risk that publishers like Ubisoft are wholeheartedly willing to take. And from their perpespective they feel they do so with good reason. They run down the big numbers and from their point of view I see where they are comming from.
From a customer’s perspective, however, I do not feel so happy with the directions taken by those involved!
I may understand why they went on with their decisions to go head to head with steams Business Model, but this does’nt mean that I can stand 100% behind the actions taken. To me, it feels like these publishers are trying to use the Epic Game Store as a tool, maybe they see it as some sort of an answer or a jumping board to push steams managment to change something about their usual 30% cut for their sales on the steam platform. But it seems as if this will not last since an Epic’s executive already said they will eventually stop paying for exclusivity on PC. This may as well be the answer to why they are not really taking any counter-precautions against these business practices, somehow it feels like Steam is just waiting until the storm has passed.
This is, however, very hypothetical. I for one do not really know what goes on, on those board meetings and my guess is you do not really know either, and thats where we are left with, a lot of questions. In the mean while, this means that Ubisoft’s Anno 1800 will not be available for us on steam after its initial release date. To many it feels as if Ubisoft and Epic decided to flip the virtual middle finger and pull some sort of a Metro Exodus on us all, and thus remove yet another game from the Steam storefront before we are able to get our hands on it unless we dive in our wallets and pre-order the Game blindly.
The Good News for those that have already pre-ordered the Game on steam is that the publisher, Ubisoft, assured that any prior purchases of the Game on the Steam Distribution Platform will be fulfilled. Steam owners of the Game will have full access to Anno 1800 and any future updates and or DLC releases through the Steam platform. They also are vague on any future release on steam as they clearly stated that they are “unsure” whether or not the Game will become available on steam again, followed with an apology for their Steam Customers who were expecting it to be available for sale after the initial release April 16th, 2019.
The Game had a pre order page for quite a while now and since the news the page has been updated by valve with a notification that the game will not be available anymore after the initial 16th of April release date. Customers who “wish listed” the title also received a mail from Valve to inform them about the move from steam, which is now widely believed to be a direct result after the successfull launch of The Division 2 on the Epic’s Store last month. While many potential customers are mad we can not deny Ubisoft’s perspective where they feel highly confident that this is a win-win scenario which they plan to play out at full.
For customers like me, this is, however, fairly inconvenient. While I admit that I had high hopes for Anno 1800 I am still that kind of customer who likes to know what is under the hood before purchasing any goods. So I always tend to wait a while until a New Game has been rolled out for a brief time where I anticipate a few patches here and there before I invest my time on that said title. I had a couple of issues with games that I bought in good faith and those turned out so sour that I changed my views on pre-order purchases and on these days I end up waiting to see whether a game turned out good or not.
The move to Epic Games Store is for me a huge no no, not because it is yet another application but it has more to do with what I personally feel comfortable with. And while I am totally fine with Epic Games existence and that Games like “Anno 1800” will be offered on Epics Store or any platform for that matter I am not happy with publishers forcing Exclusivity upon their players and taking away the freedom to choose where you purchase your goods from, this is the main reason why I do not own a lot of origin exclusive games or Uplay games who are not sold through steam because I personally like to have my games on one platform.
Aside from that I also understand why Valve sees these business decisions like those from “Deep Silver” as “Unfair” and felt that Epic was mistreating their consumers. Later at a developer conference, “Steve Allison” Senior Vice President and former Chief of Marketing at Telltale inc admittingly said that his team made a huge mistake in this matter. Both Deep Silver and Epic Games knew beforehand that they potentially had to deal with fan anger and that they basically miscalculated the impact on how these fans would actually react when the communication was sent out. The funny part is that he also said that they spent time talking these events through, where they all felt that they were not in a position where they could do this ever “again‘!?. Yet here we are!!
From our perspective it is fairly simple Mr. Allison, If a Game is announced to be released on a curtain platform we will not only expect it to be released as such but we also Expect them to STAY LOYAL to that said platform and their USERBASE, a sudden move like this only proves how unloyal you all are to your customers. For a matter of fact, you do not own a solid platform “yet” it is proven to be very unsafe and user-unfriendly where you do not provide the basic social elements that we as a gamer need. At least you could’ve had the courtesy to leave it up to us to decide whether we were up to the task to move to your platform or not, and not force it upon us as you people did. We do not mind healthy competition, but, what we do mind is to be drawn into a WAR which does not benefit us at all, in contrast you drag the consumers in a fight without backing it up with a decent platform!
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