UPDATE 4/7/17: Gearbox has followed through after G2A failed to meet their demands and is now in the process of pulling out of their partnership with G2A.
Bulletstorm: Full Clip Edition isn’t coming out until tomorrow, but it has already attracted a fair bit of controversy due to its publisher Gearbox Software announcing an exclusive partnership with shady Internet games dealer G2A. They were selling a $100 edition of the game that came with dog tags, a mouse pad, a 3D printed figurine, a large shirt, a signed certificate of authenticity, and the game itself via a Steam key. Amid the controversy that erupted from a AAA games company partnering with G2A, several prominent YouTubers, such as SidAlpha and TotalBiscuit, declared that they would halt all coverage of Gearbox’s games going forward.
That was Tuesday, and it turns out that people within Gearbox were listening to the controversy. In a statement released today, TotalBiscuit revealed that he had talked with Gearbox this week and gave them a host of evidence regarding G2A’s less than honorable business practices. In turn, Gearbox claimed ignorance regarding the company’s history and vowed to hold them to a high standard.
As explained in the video, Gearbox will be demanding that G2A take several actions if they want the business relationship between them to continue. The company released a statement to the press that we have reproduced in full below.
Gearbox Publishing heard loud and clear the concerns voiced by John “TotalBiscuit” Bain. Gearbox was then provided with a lot of documentation on the subject, after which John was gracious enough to spend time across the last two days with our head of publishing Steve Gibson to put together a proposal and a deadline for G2A to act upon.
Before Bulletstorm Steam launch, G2A makes a public commitment to this: Within 30 days, G2A Shield (aka, customer fraud protection) is made free instead of a separate paid subscription service within terms offered by other major marketplaces. All customers who spend money deserve fraud protection from a storefront. To that end, all existing G2A Shield customers are notified by April 14th that fraud protection services are now free and they will no longer be charged for this.
Before Bulletstorm Steam launch, G2A makes a public commitment to this: Within 90 days, G2A will open up a web service or API to certified developers and publishers to search for and flag for immediate removal, keys that are fraudulent. This access will be free of charge and will not require payment by the content holders.
Before Bulletstorm Steam launch, G2A makes a public commitment to this: Within 60 days implement throttling for non-certified developers and publishers at the title, userid, and account payable levels for a fraud flagging process. This is to protect content providers from having large quantities of stolen goods flipped on G2A before they can be flagged.
Before Bulletstorm Steam launch, G2A makes a public commitment to this: Within 30 days, G2A restructures its payment system so that customers who wish to buy and sell legitimate keys are given a clear, simple fee-structure that is easy to understand and contains no hidden or obfuscated charges. Join the ranks of other major marketplaces.
Gearbox Publishing won’t support a marketplace that is unwilling to make these commitments and execute on them.
Bulletstorm: Full Clip Edition is scheduled to go on sale on Steam tomorrow, giving G2A 16 hours as of this writing to respond to Gearbox’s demands. If they do not, then Gearbox will legally pull out of their contract and the planned collector’s edition will be scrapped.
For more on TechRaptor’s stance on G2A, read our editorial concerning the company and its questionable business practices.
What are your thoughts on Gearbox and G2A’s scuffle? What do you think of G2A’s efforts to clean up its image? Let us know in the comments below!