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How many of you still buy physical copies of games?


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#1 choiceweb0pen0

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 11:14 AM

This mostly comes from my experience with eBay and the increase of downloadable games from macgamestore, Apple's Software Store App, Amazon, Game tree and so on, but do most of you just download games or do you still get a physical copy?  I go back and forth. I used to like getting a physical copy because I knew I could sell it once I was done with the game. Now though it seems like a physical object takes up space and is a bit of a hassle to get rid of. Any thoughts?

#2 Wumpus

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 01:10 PM

The last physical game copies I bought was in 2010, which included Modern Warfare 2, Left 4 Dead 2, Demigod, and I think one other. Otherwise I stick to digital because of the pure convenience. I have a fast download speed so there's no waiting for games to ship or bothering to go out to a store and buy them. If games still came in all the cool boxes with awesome manuals like they used to I'd be a lot more inclined to buy physical copies of everything. Ever since they introduced the tiny "dvd" style cases and minimal manuals I lost interest. Digital stuff is often sales (steam and other places) and easy to get bundles or DLC etc all at once. Probably my only exception to all that would be special and/or collector editions of games which come in fancy boxes with nice artwork books and stuff.

Also in some cases in makes more sense, like when I get a build from Feral (who are based in London) its much easier to get a download link then wait to be mailed a disc.
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#3 dojoboy

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 01:15 PM

My most recent was Portal 2, for the PS3, so I could d/l the Mac version as well. Other than that, it was StarCraft 2.
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#4 Sargiel

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 03:00 PM

I try and always get physical :D

I have bought a lots of stuff on Steam etc. but generally do that for digital only titles where a physical box isn't an option OR if the online only sale price is mental. It's nice having a physical collection with some kind of manual. Also if ever you need to reinstall it's a lot quicker to download a patch than download a load of 4GB games..

#5 Thain Esh Kelch

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 03:58 PM

Well, my Wii games are physical.. Although I don't buy them, only get them as presents. I find them too expensive.

For the Mac? Well, my last boxed game was... Warcraft 3: The Frozen Throne, I think? I don't see a reason for physical copies, when everything is in the cloud. Sure, a good manual is nice to go through, but you can find it online anyway, and if I read, I prefer a book anyway. ;)
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#6 Janichsan

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 04:26 PM

I still buy and prefer physical copies. Not only does this feel more like actually owning the game, I also have not much confidence that many of the download services still exist in a several years time. In theory, my physical copies still work in 5, 10 or 15 years*, but who guarantees that Steam or the MAS are still around then?

(* Yes, I still have copies of games that old and even older.)

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#7 Wumpus

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 05:58 PM

I used to really care about playing older games, but I rarely ever play a game more than once now. Multiplayer titles are an exception of course and RPG's often offer multiple playthroughs. But I also consider going through an RPG or whatever multiple times "once" as then I move on to something else.  The download thing can be a drag on 15GB+ titles, but overall it works fine for me since I rarely reinstall. I certainly get the owning/saving angle of people though.
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#8 The Liberator

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 06:24 PM

The last physical game I bought was Skyrim. Two reasons, it was nearly twice as cheap as the download price, and I got a nice fold-out map too. The game before that would have been C&C: Generals + Zero Hour. I got that in about 2008 (I think). The games before that would have been Call of Duty + United Offensive, Q4, LotR: RotK and it goes on further back in time. The highest justification that I have found for purposefully buying a digital download (of Hearts of Iron III) was so I could play it in both Win + OSX. Many other games follow that, like Portal 2, ACII and many other Valve titles. There are many other titles that I own, which are purely downloads, like the WItcher (it was going for $5 at the time), my full list of Steam games can be found here. Some were bought merely because of the absolutely ridiculous price of others, like the THQ pack, which was going for $50. As it included the full COH edition and the full DoW edition and Saints Row II, I clearly did not care whether I would use the oher games ever. My latest addition to my ever growing library is Dungeon Defenders, which I only bought two days ago now. As it was half price and my friends were bugging me to buy it, I did.

I wil generally go for whichever option is better for me. If retail is better than digital download, then I shall use that instead.

...anyway, that is my two cents, Lib.

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#9 Smoke_Tetsu

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 08:59 PM

I got Physical copies of Borderlands and Batman Arkham Asylum from Feral.. I also ordered the backup DVD option for RAGE at the Mac Game Store. For some of my PC games I wrapped myself I have physical copies of them on my shelf such as UT3, Clive Barker's Jericho, X-Men Origins Wolverine, Mirror's Edge and Transformers War for Cybertron.



I am not the biggest fan of getting physical with games though because those discs get scratched so easy and become worthless not being able to be read. In theory they should all be working several years down the line but in practice that hasn't worked out for me. I've even had some drives scratch discs so it didn't matter how well I took care of them. I've lost my Snow Leopard install disc that came with my Mac that way. But luckily I was able to make a install thumb drive instead... (now there's an idea... physical copies of game installers on thumb drives!)...

I can't install Half-Life 1 from my old discs any more for example but I registered the reg code with Steam and can download it from there and not have to deal with finding all the patches for it online. I try to be very careful with my retail discs and just use them to install and once done put them back in their box right away and back on the shelf for safekeeping.

Also services that allow you to redownload your games as many times as you want has made digital distribution a lot more palatable for me.

But sometimes it is easier or less time consuming  to install from a disc rather than go through the process of downloading and doing all that is nessasary to get that working particularly when I'm wrapping a game. But on the other hand even DVDs are getting long in the tooth for the size of games these days and it makes me wish macs had blu-ray already so for example we could have some multi-dvd size games on one disc instead.
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Alex Delarg, A Clockwork Orange said:

It's funny how the colors of the real world only seem really real when you viddy them on the screen.

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Slower and faster? I'm sorry to hear such good news?

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#10 Eric5h5

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 09:40 PM

You must have had some lousy optical drives...I've never had a single game disc become unreadable, ever (aside from floppies).  Or a CD for that matter.  90% of my game purchases these days are downloads though.

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#11 Smoke_Tetsu

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 09:54 PM

Maybe I did and I would say the one in my iMac was the lousiest of them all... I had it replaced but I'm not sure I even fully trust the new one...

But either way I can't count on all my old discs to be readable to this day... and this is even not counting or before that particular drive. Some drives are also more sensitive to errors from scratches than others.

Double so for older discs. Especially after having moved a few times. You must be super fastidious and or lucky because it seems with many of my discs something happened along the way through their lifetime. Like the spoke inside the case for the disc that holds it in breaking and the disc coming loose and scratching inside the case. Or other unforeseen things that can happen over the life of a disc.

BTW, even when you have a disc with some software on it the license says you only own the disc.. not its contents.  :cool: So one could argue you no more own the game if you have a physical copy than if the installer was "in the cloud" although you do have more immediate access and easier to transfer to another person although steam now has gifting and trading. :P
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Alex Delarg, A Clockwork Orange said:

It's funny how the colors of the real world only seem really real when you viddy them on the screen.

the Battle Cat said:

Slower and faster? I'm sorry to hear such good news?

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#12 Eric5h5

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 10:03 PM

It's a simple matter of not using the discs as coasters.  ;)

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#13 mattw

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Posted 18 March 2012 - 03:55 AM

I was surprised how quickly I went from all boxed games to mainly downloads and how annoying it now seems with titles that I have to go and find a disc before I can play.

I have bought some used PC games on disc to run in Crossover or Wineskin because they never made it to the Mac. The few Mac titles I have purchased boxed tended to be cheaper at the time to source that way and generally it is only the code in the box you need anyway.

Whenever possible I do try to make sure I can re-download games and backup the installers. DRM can be concerning as I still play games I purchased years ago on earlier Macs and when I buy a title I'd like to expect that to continue. I'm not sure some of the servers will even be around when I come to move to my next Mac or the one after that.

I'd really like to see something in law that requires DRM to be removed if anything happens to a company.

#14 Hansi

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Posted 18 March 2012 - 08:34 AM

I generally go with Steam unless it's not available there then I buy the physical copy from Amazon

#15 the Battle Cat

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Posted 18 March 2012 - 10:18 AM

I still have all my old game disks.  I even have some floppies that I don't have a machine to read or play with.  I would prefer having a game on a disk so that I can reload it without having to download or finagle with some third party.  I also have a number of downloaded games from Steam etc.  The problem with that sort of game, that relies on a server somewhere to verify or otherwise be involved in playing the game... those servers come and go whereas I'm pretty much here to stay.  I haven't had a problem with that yet, but I can see that in my future.
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#16 choiceweb0pen0

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Posted 18 March 2012 - 11:40 AM

I pretty much play a game once. I played Borderlands about 1.5 times, but even using a different character is not that different for me.

#17 Frost

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Posted 18 March 2012 - 09:02 PM

I've spent enough time in places with slow or no Internet and unreliable power that I'm a bit obsessive about being able to install and run my software without having to rely on external sources and services. I prefer discs.

The only time I go downloadable is when something is so insanely cheap that it just isn't worth passing up, or it's a game I already have discs for and the discount price is worth paying a couple bucks to not have to have the disc in the drive.
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#18 AussieMacGamer

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Posted 19 March 2012 - 01:57 AM

I buy physical copies of everything unless it's on sale on steam. Digital prices are always the local AU prices, meaning somewhere around double what you folks in the US pay give or take GST. I'm happy to wait a week if i get the game half price.

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#19 bismilah

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Posted 19 March 2012 - 05:21 PM

Sometimes the physical copy is cheaper, like Football Manager 2012: 50 $ at MGS or Steam, but the DVD at amazon is between 8 and 15, like 3 or 4 times cheaper including shipping

#20 the Battle Cat

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Posted 19 March 2012 - 06:16 PM

I keep all my game packing boxes and I've made a fort out of them.  I'll be prepared for the next zombie apocalypse.
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