To those who pre-order games: why?

Sigmund Av Volsung

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Dec 11, 2009
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Seldom. I consider it, but it's rarely concrete in my case.

Last time it happened was with The Witcher 3, and that's cause CDPR offered a whole bunch of other stuff alongside it as well as store credit on their site.

Ended up buying quite a few games using that credit, which more than made it worthwhile. This was also about 6 months before release, so at that point I had seen enough footage and had enough faith in CDPR after The Witcher 2 to pre-order.

Currently, I'm considering buying MGS V week one, but my enthusiasm is fading. There's also literally nothing on the horizon I'd pre-order.

If I do, it's because I know I will enjoy the game regardless and because it offers enough contingency to justify the price.

It's why I never buy anything from Ubisoft ever again.
 

wings012

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I never preordered games, but I do prepurchase them? I suppose it's sort of the same thing. Generally I only do it when the game is within weeks of coming out.

I only do so because of prepurchase sales and/or bonuses.
 

Ragsnstitches

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Dec 2, 2009
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People who preorder the week before launch? Not an issue. There's enough info by this point for the diligent consumer to grasp the products general quality. I would say that, for PC users especially, to be mindful of terrible ports (since most footage we see is from consoles anyway this is mostly a PC issue, but if a game is made on one console then ported over, it can be just as disastrous). A good tip is to look at how willing the company is to show off PC contnet and if you can, hold off until the early reviews come in. If there are no PC reviews, that's a Red Flag. Though Witcher 3 came out with no PC reviews so... eh... what was my point again?

People who preorder upon announcement when there is nothing but a Trailer and some shopped screencaps? Not very savvy. But you have to learn this for yourself. Sometimes the game will be fine and your money well spent, but make no mistake, in the current state of the industry with AAA developers not meeting the AAA quality despite bloated production costs, it's very unwise to put money down on product that has nothing but an artists rendition to go by. It's always a gamble.

Preorders, in a general sense, I don't have a problem with. Caveat Emptor. However, there are definitely certain practices that are undeniably shady (gating off content from legit buyers, place of purchase exclusivity, tied in DLC...).

The Squeenix multi teared preorder shenanigans looks outright scummy. Particularly the early release prize. I'd rather the game not be rushed out the door to meet such an offer, but what am I saying... QA is for losers.

EDIT:

I always get worried that preorder culture is going to be (or is currently) used by devs to reach their goals. That the preorders are going to act as a budget boost to get a game over the finish line. I don't like the idea of the quality of a finished game to be tied to buyer demand. Make the game, and if it's good, demand will follow (as long as you market sensibly).
 

Loop Stricken

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Jun 17, 2009
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IF I preorder a game, it's because I'm 95% certain I'll like it, it'll be good, and/or it comes with preorder bonuses I want.

Generally this only really applies to Blizzard games.
 

lokun489

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Jun 3, 2010
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When I didn't have a lot of money I wouldn't be able to keep it that well. This or that would pop up and I'd think I'd have to pay for it, but if I didn't have money I knew I didn't have to. So I'd put my money into a game that was coming out that I knew I'd like. Now? I only pre-order if I'm interested in any sort of bonuses like Persona Q's special edition.
 

TheRundownRabbit

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Aug 27, 2009
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1. Guarantee myself a copy
2. Possibility of early download
3. Because I'm not afraid to admit that I'm a sucker for crappy pre-order bonuses and gimmicks
 

Gordon_4_v1legacy

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Aug 22, 2010
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In old times (IE before I had a debit card) I did to guarantee myself a copy of the game on or a day after launch. Pokemon has been an oft-cited example and that's largely because they have been up until very recently only physical games and as such there is occasionally scarcity - add to that they hold their value ridiculously well and so the new copies remain at stable prices and the used are actually rare.

Now-a-days I do it mainly for games that are part of a franchise I'm totally on-board with like Dragon Age and Mass Effect. Deus Ex will be an exception because as pre-order shenanigans go these are pretty fucking ludicrous.
 

Carzinex

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Mar 29, 2011
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I used to pre-order before when i didn't earn as much. I could budget better knowing i had a spare £40 just now but not knowing if i would on release. Now I don't pre-order, no point for me.
 

Plinglebob

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Nov 11, 2008
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I regularly pre-order games that I'm certain I'm going to buy at some point (even if its a year from now) and normally for one of the following reasons:

1) Free Stuff - DLC, free copy of a previous game etc. Pretty much anything really as long as I think it could be fun/worth it. This includes limited editions/collectors editions (hello Bayonetta Double Pack)

2) Discounts - Batman: Arkham Knight was going for £22 on one website if you pre-ordered it and seeing as the discount that big wasn't likely to happen any time soon, I thought why not? So far played 6hrs and now waiting for the patch.

3) I have the money available - Sometimes, for whatever reason, I have money left at the end of the month and so I preorder a game thats going to come out in November/December as I know money will be tighter then.

4) I want to play the game on release - This was more when I played console games so there was a risk, but being single and sad, I'd often plan time off around big game releases (still do actually) and didn't want to risk a game being sold out.
 

jurnag12

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Nov 9, 2009
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I generally only pre-order games that I'm definitely going to buy regardless of the probable quality, because I want to be assured of a copy on launch if it's a console game and because I might as well get some extra goodies out of it if I'm gonna grab it day one anyway.
 

Gengisgame

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CannibalCorpses said:
I think the better question is why pre-order at near full price when 3 months down the line the game will be dirt cheap anyway?
Perhaps the person doesn't want to wait until the game may or may not lower in price.

Do you have anything better to do or play in the mean time? can you afford it? how much do you think you will enjoy it for it's cost?
all of these are factors on why people buy games on release, if I have the time to spare I would gladly spend that extra 30 dollars and have something worth while to spend my time on in those 3 months rather than use the time on facebook or internet forums
 

Dreiko_v1legacy

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Aug 28, 2008
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It's either of two reasons.

1: The preorder offers you some physical extra good that is only gonna be available then and never else. I have a collector side to me so these things being extra make it worthwhile to preorder.


2: The game is super niche and hard to obtain, so hard that if you don't preorder it the game stores won't stock it at all.

2 is a bit less common now since Amazon exists but 1 is still going strong.
 

ecoho

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Jun 16, 2010
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Elfgore said:
If I'm gonna buy a game at full-price why not just pre-order and get a few extra goodies? I've never been screwed over by a pre-order, because I only buy games I know will be good. Also, I don't like people telling me how to spend my own money. I'm a rebel like that.
well said, I also preorder games because I tend to research them before hand its not that hard to do.
 

Amaror

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Apr 15, 2011
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Because i know i want the game.
Now i am not a person that preorders a lot, i barely do it. But when i do it, i do it with a game that i allready KNOW i will buy no matter what the reviews say. Skyrim was such a game, the Witcher 3 another. The only time i regretted preordering a game was Dragon Age 2 and i just stopped preordering Bioware games after that. Problem solved.
Really i don't see many reasons not to do it in that case. The game won't get cheaper in the few hours after release that it will take me to buy it if i don't preorder it. And i get it immediatly, get to predownload it before and most of the time i get some neat bonus as a cherry on top. Hell i got the base game of civilization 5 through my xcom preorder.
And really even in case of DA 2 i believe i would have bought the game, whether i had preordered it or not. The signs that the game would be sh*t were glaring. Everything in it's marketing campaign screamed how horrible the game would be. From the incredibly ugly first screenshots, to "Button-Awesome", to everything else. It was very very apparent. But the reason i preordered and would have bought the game had i not preordered it, is that i was plain and simply an idiot. I loved Bioware that much that i was in denial about how sh*tty the game was going to be and not preordering would not have fixed that.
And i never fell prey to most of the other game that get paraded around for reasons not to preorder.
Colonial Marines looked just like another scripted shooter even from it's best trailers. Even if it was a heavily scripted shooter set in the alien franchise, it was still an heavily scripted shooter.
What else? Destiny seemed to disappoint a lot of people.
I don't really know why, because all the hype about the game came from the fact that it was made by bungie. There weren't any cool gameplay features shown or anything real, at least not what i saw, so i don't know why people were so excited to begin with.
 

Shoggoth2588

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Aug 31, 2009
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It seems like most early adopters are simply just paying to do post-Beta testing. In general I wait for a game to launch its complete edition before I purchase it. Even then, I may wait just to see if the price of that version drops. Part of why I love the Wii U is the fact that the price of 3rd party games drops like rocks and fairly quickly. I got Deus Ex: HR+ for less than the price of a pizza for example. I can't recall which was the last game that I pre-ordered but I'm pretty sure it was Fable 3. When it comes to the last (non Nintendo) game that I've bought on day one, I'm pretty sure that was Dragon Age 2. I don't mind getting Nintendo games on day one since the prices very rarely fall but most games I don't even bother getting on day one anymore, let alone pre-order.

But with all that being said, there is a very recent game that I have pre-ordered. Dragon Ball Z: Extreme Butoden on the 3DS. First off, this was the most enjoyable demo I've played on the 3DS. Since DBZ:EB is a fighting game made by Arc, I would expect nothing less but after playing the demo I was sold. Second, the game is cheap ($30 new where most 3DS games are $10 more). The big thing that made me go for it though was Super Butoden 2. Pre-ordering from Amazon gets me a code for the classic Super Famicom game as a bonus. Yeah, there are also additional support characters but the fact that I'm getting another game, a game that I already know is good and can't legally obtain in the US, just sold it for me.
 

Rebel_Raven

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Jul 24, 2011
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I pre-order when the bonuses are appealing enough, or I really love the series. Then again, I rarely pre-order. I think, maybe 3 games?

Skyrim, Saints Row the third, and Dragonball xenoverse.

I'm debating pre-ordering Senran Kagura 2 because I really would prefer the digital download so it's one less game cartridge I have to keep track of.

I wanted to pre-order fallout 4 for the pipboy case, but things never fell into place for it. :/
 

Ryallen

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Feb 25, 2014
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I pre-order after reviews come out, and even then, only on Steam and minutes before the game comes out. Why? Because of reasons.

In all honesty, I only pre-order games that I KNOW are going to be good. Which actually doesn't make any sense, but it's how I do. I've preordered a few games in the past few years, but, like I said, only over Steam and at the last second. That doesn't mean that I don't approve of pre-ordering. I don't particularly like it, but I can understand why someone would do it. I hate shitty pre-order business practices as much as the next guy, but I understand why people do it in the first place. When Skyrim was announced, I pre-ordered it so that I would be guaranteed a copy. And you know what happened? The local Gamestop ran out of copies to sell to people that didn't pre-order for the next week or two. It's an impatience thing, but I wanted to make sure that I got a copy as soon as possible. I don't pre-order games often. Never console games because of said shitty practices, but on PC I can forgive it now because of the refund policy.
 

Tsun Tzu

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I only ever pre-order a game if I'm fairly certain I'll enjoy it, or if the company/series has had a really good track record with me.

The extra swag and collectors editions and what not are a definite incentive too.

Hehehe...Pipboy is miiiiine.
 
Mar 30, 2010
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Because in a world where everyone is so damn cynical and unable to express a point of view unless it is also shared by at least three professional reviewers it's kinda nice to nail your flag to the post and declare trust in a developer. Also, if you're an active member of the gaming community then chances are you've had the opportunity to sign up for betas of a game, or have funded a kickstarter project, in which case you are in a very well-informed position to know where and what your money is going towards.

Basically, I would ask - in a period of game development where open betas are freely available, kickstarters allow interested parties to buy full-game access for half-game money and where devs are offering all kinds of in-game add-ons to entice purchasers - why wouldn't you pre-order?