Pay Attention, Steam: You Can Now Return These Digital Games

The convenience of digital downloads comes with a price: you might not have to deal with physical media, but you normally can't return the stuff you purchase on major distribution platforms like Steam either. But increasingly, other smaller services are willing to treat digital games a bit more like physical ones.


Today, DRM-free distribution service GOG announced that they'll allow players to return games, provided the right criteria is met:

If you buy a game on and find that it doesn't work properly on your system, and our support cannot fix the problem, you get a full refund. It's a worldwide guarantee, and you have whole 30 days after the purchase date, to contact us about the refund.

There's even more! If you bought a game by mistake, or simply changed your mind about a purchase, you can get a full refund within 14 days, as long as the game wasn't downloaded.

Earlier this year, Origin announced a new return policy as well: you can return games within 24 hours of first booting up the game, within seven days of purchasing it, or within the first seven days after the game's release if you preordered.

Steam's policy, for comparison's sake: "As with most software products, we do not offer refunds or exchanges on games, DLC or in-game items purchased on our website or through the Steam Client."

Kind of feels like Steam is being left behind, as far as being able to return digital games goes, no?


You can read more about GOG's return policy here.



Worse, they're now ahead of brick and morter stores.

Meanwhile, at Gamestop:

A game has been out for a while. Tired of keeping all those discs and boxes in one simple package, Gamestop employees break the plastic seal, open the games and put the discs in paper sleeves and continue to sell them for the unopened new price.

A customer comes in with a game they purchased the night before. "This game is terrible! It runs like crap on my 360. What were the developers thinking? I'd like to return this."

"Sorry, you opened the plastic seal. It's no longer new."