2K, the publishers behind the Borderlands series, have prevented owners of legitimate disk copies of Borderlands from working only the day before there announcement of the free GOTY upgrade. Until last Wednesday anyone who had a physical disk version of the game wasn't able to play it directly but could use a special steam tool to convert their physical copy into a digital Steam-based version. However, before the announcement of a free upgrade to a remastered GOTY edition for all Steam owners they deleted the tool, making any remaining physical copies of the game on PC completely unplayable and therefore worthless.
The timing of the tools removal and the date of the announcement are almost certainly related, although obviously no-one at 2K or Gearbox have made any announcements or confirmations about the reasons for the tools removal. As of right now, it is not possible to convert a disk version of Borderlands to a digital version, although if you're one of those affected by this change you might want to take it up with 2K's support team.
At the time of writing any owners of physical Borderlands copies will have to repurchase the game again to be able to play it on PC and to get the upgrade to the game of the year edition when it goes live on April 3rd. There are almost certainly some unfortunate disk owners out there as there was no warning or notification of the tools removal. The granting tool had been around since 2014 when 2K removed DRM from the game with a patch but wanted to allow owners of the game physically to still be able to use their games.
We have reached out to 2K for comment surrounding the removal of the Granting Tool.
What do you think about the tool's removal? Do you think the timing was deliberate on the part of 2K? Join in the conversation in the comments down below.