Today is the vaguely sinister-sounding Black Friday, which actually began on Monday (according to Amazon) and ends on Sunday (according to HMV). Next year, Black Friday is set to last a whole year. Although we were hugely excited about the prospect of getting some cheap PC games and kit from amazon.co.uk, for the most part it's been fairly disappointing.
In the US, titles like Battlefield 3, Crysis 2, Metro 2033 and Starcraft II have all been heavily discounted. In the UK the deals have been limited to games like Assassin's Creed and Saints Row 3 - but only on consoles. Hardware has been similarly disappointing, with overpriced Logitech webcams and mice being reduced so they're priced normally.
The reason the US can discount so many games seems to be that it offers PC games as downloads, a service that isn't available in the UK. Try and buy a game on amazon.com from the UK, and you're greeted with the following message: “Game Downloads are only available to US customers. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause you.” Well, your apology just isn't good enough Amazon. We're very upset.
Fortunately there are a host of download services offering great deals to us Brits, so Amazon can just stuff it. Steam has got an epic sale on at the moment, but GamersGate (opens in new tab) and Impulse both have similarly awesome discounts on PC games. We'll post a complete round-up of the day's deals later today, so keep an eye out.
Incidentally, it's weird that Black Friday seems to officially be a thing in the UK now - traditionally, it's the Friday after Thanksgiving in the US. In the UK, most people only know what Thanksgiving is because of certain episodes of Friends, usually broadcast around Easter. Are we going to start celebrating Thanksgiving in the UK next?