What if they'd sold it to Microsoft to merge into GFWL? Or Valve, to poach the users for Steam? It can always be worse.
I was speaking of brick and mortar retailers.
Actually DD DOES dominate over retail for PC games, as of last year, and is the growing part of the market. Retail is on the way out for PC games.
I've seen nothing to support this. I read contestable information that digital downloads may be surpassing physical sales. May be. Not has. And surpassing, Not dominating. If the market was dominated
, then people in the industry would not be arguing if DD has surpassed
physical. It would be clear. 49% of a market is sizable. So is 40% and even 30%. When DD surpasses physical sales with a 75-80% share, then I'd say the market is dominated. But even then, that 20% market is gonna be valuable enough for someone to service. We are still talking many millions of customers here.
People who don't accept Steam aren't as numerous as reading this forum would lead you to believe. And really, they have D2D, GoG, etc as options. If they don't want Steam and they don't want Gamestop-Impulse, it's not like there's no other options.
C'mon give me some credit here. Do you really think I base my thoughts off of data gathered from such a limited set as these small forums? For over ten years, and from points all across this world wide net, I have been reading people discuss digital distribution. And I continue to dialog this subject with friends, family and coworkers. Even with strangers as we wait dutifully in line to make our brick and mortar purchases.
I am left with the strong sense that a sizable population is inherently distrustful of electronic distribution services. I find clues across the net, in peoples homes, at jobsites, in public places, over the radio waves, and in movies and television. Alot of people have issues with an ESD marketplace. Some are concerned about product ownership, some about privacy, others about the loss of local taxes, and much more. I think of this group as the ESD Timids. People who for a wide range of reasons, are reluctant to participate in the ESD marketplace. This is a much broader group than steam haters. Now, A portion of the PC Gamer segment, of this ESD Timid population; viewed Impulse as their sole safe gateway into the world of digital downloads. It stands to reason that a portion of that specific sub-population will no longer view Impulse as safe when a publicly traded company with Gamestops record takes over. Hence, the sale of Impulse has slowed down the transition to a digital marketplace.
You nor I can quantify these populations into accurate numbers. But when it is estimated that over 60% of the heads of households in my country purchase video games on a regular basis... even a small percentage of the gaming population equates to many millions of people. The minorities are sizable. And at this time we are at best talking about a 51/49 to 55/45 split between ESD's and brick and mortar. Even should the gap grow to 90/10, the minority will be significant and won't be ignored. Someone will capitalize of those willing customers.
And keep in mind, that every time a game goes digital only, it skews the figures. How can you accurately compare digital vs physical sales, with so much digital only product entering the mix? 100% of Fallen Enchantresses sales will be digital. That in no way means that people would not have bought a physical copy of it had they the choice. And understand that the digital sales data is bloated by $0.99 games. Even the distribution of Demo's and free games has been said to bloat the figures.
Unlikely. Creating standalone patches is a lot more work then using a DD updater system. That's one of the reasons Ironclad moved patches to Impulse for Sins, when originally it had standalone patches.
I don't know first hand the costs of standalone patches. But I do know that where there is a will there is a way. Stardock has struck me as a company who goes out of their way to service their customers. Beyond that, if they believe that their method of patch distribution will limit future sales, then mayhap they are motivated to provide an alternative. And Brad did say some time back, that they were considering going so far as snail mailing patches on CD to E:WOM customers.
And TBH, you won't buy a Stardock game because of the patching system, but the fact that the last two games Stardock published (WoM and Demigod) were *both* unplayable out of the box didn't bother you? That seems like a odd set of priorities to me.
Eh? I am still bothered by buggy releases. But I am resigned to buy buggy boxes where the post sale patch support is sufficient. If I no longer have access to patch support, then I will no longer risk buying buggy releases.