Recently it happened again, yes, people pre-ordered a game and what they received lit the internet up like a wild fire, at least for a little bit.
Now, I am not going to hammer on one specific example such as Mass effect or Yooka-Laylee, but I will highlight my personal gripe with the whole pre-order culture and state why I think it is hurting, not the gaming industry, but you as the consumer.
When the pre-order hit us,it was for one reason. It was to make sure that when a big publisher released one of your favorite games that you would be able to get the digital download or disc when sales would sky rocket and a lot of the times actually sell out when you run into your local game shop. This would leave you without a copy and it would suck, so, so much. A lot of us have been in this situation and for the time it was genuinely a good idea to do so. It was a system that was aimed to help you.
In more recent years the system has mutated into a monster. With digital platforms selling games that doesn’t rely on physical stock and relieving pressure from shops, it begs the question, why are we still doing it? Especially in an industry where there are no tangible repercussions for giving you shitty products in return for your loyalty and money, because that is essentially why you are pre-ordering these days.
I don’t have to go reiterate the whole No man’s sky fiasco to show you that these developers and publishers can tell you pretty much anything and put absolutely nothing about it into the actual game that you get. What happens then you get mad, you get really mad, you paid a full price tag for the game with your hard earned money and then they apologize and make up excuses and a few weeks down the line the story dies down and you are left with the abysmal product that they smeared off on you for the money.
The fact of the matter is that if you pre-order anything, you have absolutely no guarantee about what the product will look like and what it will feature. Since there are no real backlash the developers get they have pushed out countless games over the past few years, suckering people into buying their product that in the end is nothing like they said it would be.
I could ramble away for hours on end about the subject, but I need to get to a closing point. In an industry known for bullshitting their clients I urge you to keep your money to yourself and wait for reviews, let’s plays and word of mouth to spread about the game you have your eyes on. If everyone stops pre-ordering it would force the developers and publishers to make sure that the quality of their product is what they initially promised it would be. So just STOP IT! Don’t pre-order games until you know exactly what you are getting.
Agree? Disagree? Let me know your thoughts!