Near-weekly Steam deals and Humble Bundles mean you can't blink without stumbling into a PC gaming sale somewhere, and GOG isn't listening to your cries of sanctuary from these savings. Nope, it's holding you down and letting you buy five games from a list of hits for the amount of change you could probably find rooting around beneath your couch for a bit.
Good news, everyone! Steam, Amazon, Blizzard, and more have kicked off Consumer Season by booby trapping the web with potent spending bait such as 33% off XCOM: Enemy Unknown, 50% off The Walking Dead, and 66% off StarCraft II. We spent the morning stumbling through the minefield to compile a list of some of the best seasonal discounts, but stay vigilant: more surprise server-busters are bound to go live as we approach the spendiest weekend of the year.
The year is 20XX. Over-reliance on mysterious "cloud storage" and catastrophic "Y2X" software failures have devastated the world's supply of PC games. You can only choose five games to preserve. What's at stake? Oh, just the fate of PC gaming and ten dollars. Yep, that's (mostly) right: drop by GOG this week and you can liberate five DRM-free games from their servers for only $10 (around £6).
Earlier this week I had a chat with CD Projekt RED PR Specialist Agnieszka Szóstak and GOG Head of PR & Marketing Trevor Longino. We briefly discussed several topics, including CDP RED's upcoming open-world RPG Cyberpunk 2077, GOG's take on Windows 8 and its new Mac library, as well as some of the piracy issues CDP has been so vocal about in the past. Here are the best responses on those topics.
It's mystery time! During a chat yesterday with Trevor Longino, Head of PR & Marketing at GOG, I mentioned I'd really like Microsoft to let them sell Freelancer. All this Star Citizen business is making me pine for it, but I can't find my original CD. It's very sad. In response, Longino pointed out that he still has his original Freelancer CD, but also shared the news that GOG is currently working out a deal with either Microsoft, Take-Two, or LucasArts. So I may or may not get Freelancer, but there's no losing.
GOG.com is running a "Pay what you want" deal on the Divinity series from Larian Studios. You can get the original 2002 RPG for any price you name. Beat the average (about $8 as of the writing of this article), and they'll also throw in Beyond Divinity. Double the average, and you'll get early access to the Divinity II Developer's Cut when it releases later this month.
Raise your hand if you like DRM-free distribution of new indie games and old classics! OK, now put your hand back on your mouse -- you need it for clicking on GOG's latest release lineup, which was revealed at CD Projekt Red's Summer Conference today. It includes Tiny and Big: Grandpa's Leftovers, Retro City Rampage, the first three Tomb Raider games in a $10 (~ £6.45) collection, Sid Meier's Colonization, and indie adventure game Resonance.
Thief: Deadly Shadows, Splinter Cell, Anomaly: Warzone Earth and Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver sneak onto GoG
Retro game download service GoG.com have seemingly reached into our brains and pulled out some of our finest gaming memories with this week's new additions.
Thief: Deadly Shadows may have reduced the level sizes of its predecessors, but it more than makes up for it with its cold, perpetually haunted atmosphere and that level. You know the one I mean. We hope the Thief 4 team at Square Enix are furiously taking notes while they poo their pants.
The adorably-adorable Botanicula is now available on GOG, but—as a surprise—it's also available for a limited time in the pay-what-you-want Humble Botanicula Debut. The bundle, which supports habitat conservation charity World Land Trust, seems plenty good-natured, but not everyone is happy about it. Some of those who pre-ordered the game on GOG are naturally upset that they missed out on the pay-what-you-want opportunity. Who wouldn't have predicted that? No worries, though, as GOG has responded in its usual Good Guy fashion by rounding up bonuses for everyone who has already purchased the game.
Speaking to Eurogamer, CD Projekt Red head of marketing Michal Platkow-Gilewski has revealed that the Witcher developer will be giving away a "legendary" PC RPG for free on Thursday. The giveaway will run alongside the company's spring conference, which begins at 5pm GMT.
"CD Projekt RED and GOG.com have prepared something very special for all the PC fans of The Witcher 2 Assassins of Kings, who already have the game, as well as for all those who will buy one any time in the future" Platkow-Gilewski said.
Good Old Games relaunched this morning, and shall henceforth simply be known as GOG. The online store has occupied a neat niche in digital distribution, reselling modernised versions of classic games with bonus parts like soundtracks and extra artwork, DRM free. The relaunch heralds a bit of a shift in their remit. GOG will now sell indie games through the service, and games from major labels within three years of their release. Trine, The Whispered World, Machinarium, Darwinia and SpaceChem are on the way, with more planned soon.
The increasing variety of games available on GOG will dilute their identity a bit, but they're planning to sell new titles and indie games with the same principles in mind. Their stance against DRM remains as firm as ever, as managing director Guillaume Rambourg told Gamespot. "It has taken us 3 years of hard work to build up this catalogue and convince rights holders that removing DRM is actually the best way to fight against piracy, a "sector" that managed to succeed where most of the gaming industry failed to perform: providing (illegal) gamers with a simple and fast access to games within a few clicks."
"I don’t want Witcher to be sold by crappy stores which don’t care about the consumers." That's what the impressively titled Marcin Iwinski - co-founder, Member of the Board and Business Development at CD Projekt Group - had to say at GDC last week.
The diversity of video game retailers is a contentious issue at the moment. UK retail chain GAME's share prices are at an all-time low. If the cover of industry magazine, MCV is anything to go by, they're already dead. Marcin has been predicting the decline for years: "It’s funny because I’m speaking at the conferences, lectures and whatnot for the last six years of saying 'digital, digital, digital' and nothing happened. Then... kaboom! We're at the tipping point and off we go."
Ahh. Explosive cafes. Sinister mime artists. Sultry french accents. I could only be talking about classic point and clicker, Broken Sword: Shadow of the Templars.
Why am I going all nostalgic for the most French game I've ever played? Because, to celebrate 6 million downloads, Good Old Games are giving away the Director's Cut completely free. There is no catch.
You'll be able to download the free game until 7:59 a.m. EDT/11:59 a.m. GMT on October 1. To download, pay GOG a visit and click on the massive banner at the top of the page.
A heartfelt thank you to everyone who attended our PC Gaming Press Conference last Friday at PAX. It feels damn nice to pack a room with PC gamers, and talk directly about some of the innovations, ideas, and good things happening on our platform. If you weren't in Seattle last weekend, we're delighted to bring you video of the full presentation. Inside this post, we've also broken out the video into timestamps for your convenience.
We're really looking forward to doing this again next year in a bigger way. Obviously we don't think of ourselves as the keepers of PC gaming as a platform, but if someone isn't going to get on stage, gather some exciting upcoming games and say nice things about the PC, by jove, we'll do it. To that end, if you have any suggestions for format, content, or who you'd like to see at such an event, let us know in the comments.
The gregarious and gracious guys at Good Old Games are at it again: Richard Garriott's Ultima I, II, III, and IV will become the latest additions to their collection of PC classics for sale on Tuesday, August 30. The first three Ultima games will come bundled for the same price. And Ultima IV? That'll be free for the taking!
And then, like mana from heaven, Peter Molyneux's original god game Populous will join them shortly after, on Thursday, September 1, for another $5.99.
It's been a rollercoaster week for retro game publisher Good Old Games. They closed! No they didn't! They're back! They apologised! They're wearing monk costumes! They're making money hand over fist! What the hell!
Before it all kicked off, PC Gamer sat down with GOG co-founder Marcin Iwinski and Managing Director Guillaume Rambourg to discover the story behind their relaunch, and how they convince publishers to release their games without DRM, how they combat piracy, and their holy mission to improve PC gaming. Warning: this interview contains Poles explaining themselves using slightly awkward metaphors.
To re-iterate - this interview took place before GOG closed their site.
This Sunday, GOG.com disappeared, replaced with a vague message from its creators about the website's closure. It read, in part, that "GOG.com simply cannot remain in its current form." People were understandably upset. Good Old Games are a digital distributor of old, DRM-free games, and a well-respected company. People were sad to see them close down.
But it turned out they weren't closing. Tomorrow, the site will re-launch, out of beta with some new features and some new games, but fundamentally unchanged. The closure was a hoax. After days of growing backlash as rumours spread and gamers were understandably unhappy at being fooled, we asked Good Old Games why they decided to re-launch the site in this way. Their statement is included in full below.