Cancel Beta account and refund

By on October 6, 2008 4:56:45 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Jinx

Join Date 02/2008
+18

When the game was first announced, I was quite excited about the possibilities the game would offer and signed up for a pre-order.  However, I would now like to cancel that pre-order and get my money back.

I have heard this is not possible.  Why is this the case?  We have not purchesed a product yet.  This is not retail yet, it's beta.  All we've done is set aside some money for a product that will eventually be delivered - whether that promise holds true or not.  I signed up for pre-order with Beta access as a PERK.  I did not pay a full amount just to play a beta game.  And now, I no longer want to have a pre-order account.  

If we can't get our money back, what security do we have that they'll even deliver a proper finished product?  A developer's promise?  Pinky swear? Cross your heart and hope to die?

Remember Hellgate?  That game's retail release was basically beta quality.  People were very upset that what they paid for was a beta product and that they couldn't get their money back.  The only difference is that this product actually is officially 'beta' right now.  Both games took your money for a beta release.

I have never heard of any company not giving money back for pre-orders, so I am a bit incredulous that Stardock, a company which I thought to be very customer oriented, will not give refunds for pre-orders.

I'm not here to bash the game or anything like that.  It's in beta status, I know.  There's bugs, missing assets, and a ton of features yet to be implemented.  I know.  Those aren't the reasons I want a refund, so let's just leave it at that.

 

Now, with all that out of the way, can I get an official word on the following:

a ) whether or not it's possible to get a refund 

b ) if not, why not

c ) is it possible to move the demigod pre-order to another (new) stardock account?

 

Again, I didn't come here start any flames or to put down the game - just here for information.

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October 12, 2008 9:03:36 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Clearly we have some differing opinions.  We know stardocks official stance some of us think it is fair, even overly generous, and others think it stinks.  We clearly aren't goning to change minds here, so let's stop posting.

 

/CLOSE THREAD

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October 12, 2008 9:04:05 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Thanks all!!!  

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October 12, 2008 9:21:47 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

It's overly generous to give a 75% refund after launch, but for 75% on a cancelled pre order isn't. But agreed this isn't going anywhere and Stardock is already very aware of the thread.

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October 12, 2008 10:06:45 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Why do you think they included it as a perk to people who pre-ordered? Those people who pre-ordered commited to buying the game. If you could just pre-order then cancel your pre-order and reap the benefits of pre-ordering then what would be the point of making it a bonus?

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October 13, 2008 1:35:59 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

I guess you don't understand what a TON of other companies do, and READ what it says; limited time offer. A pre-order traditionally is just to make sure you get the game. Like say you didn't pre order WoW : WotLK CE guess what you don't get it. I'm really sick of fanboy answers, in all honestly it wasn't presented properly.

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October 13, 2008 7:18:45 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Your arguement is that i'm a fanboy? Hahahaha weak arguement. Yeah, and you pre-ordered Demigod & you WILL get the game upon release. You got the Beta they promised? Maybe you do just need the money, so cancel your preorder and take the 75% refund. I don't see why your fussing over $12, i know times are hard with the financial crisis but was it SD fault you commited to something you couldn't afford?

 

Edit: Yeah other companies do different things. EA made you pay $20 for a pre-order pack (Beta ect,) which was to be paid up front on top of the final product wether you purchase CE or SE, and your whining about $12?

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October 13, 2008 9:24:11 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

DO NOT CLOSE THREAD

Closing a thread where critical opinions against the forum's owners are expressed would have all the appearances of intolerance & censorship.

It is in StarDock's interest that those negative opinions are freely & fully expressed, so that SD can measure the length, width & depth of the problem.

My family has been regularly beta-testing & buying stuff from SD for the past 8 years : we have no complaint whatsoever ... but one cannot generalize, by induction, from a particular case.

I've read each & every post on this thread, and it enlightens me to read about perceptions & interpretations that are contrary to my family's cheerful position.

Closing a thread because it has become too negative (according to those who are too positive!) is a clumsy manner of crushing dissent.

Those of you who feel that the thread has become boring, useless, sterile, repetitive ... well, of course :

You're free not to visit it anymore.   [to mimick Annatar!]

P.S. > I somewhat agree with verspunken (see his reply #73).

A "contract" does not always legally come in the form of a paper document to be signed with ink by at least 2 parties. You can have a verbal contract, and also, how StarDock presents its pre-order-plus-beta-participation package is a contractual offer, to which the customers in effect agrees when he pays by credit card. But ... in American Law, there is the notion of "meeting of the minds" : for a contract to have legal value, it must have been entered into by a mutual awareness, in all parties, of its terms & conditions -- and on that fundamental point, the critics, on this thread, might have a legal leg to stand on, if they can show that the info (about the terms & conditions) was not sufficiently & explicitly presented. (V*d** Pr*f*ss*r, anyone ?!)

My sources concerning American contractual law are : Judge Joe Brown, Judge Mathis, Judge Milian, Judge Lopez, and of course, Judge Judy.

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October 13, 2008 12:54:13 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

The point was not to close the thread because it was TOO negative.  I just wanted people to realize that they were not going to change anyone's mind and that the thread should be allowed to die.  Feel free to continue to discuss, but both sides have clearly been discussed.

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October 13, 2008 2:44:05 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

*Rushes in panting, out of breath*

As per usual, I am late to the party. 

 

Everytime SD does a Beta release, there is at least one thread like this.  I think that some of us ("Us" being both the customer base and the SD staff) take for granted that we know how this works after a few times through the dance.   For any one that's been around a little while, we plunk down our cash ahead of time, not to reserve a compy of the software, but to help them with their dev costs and get in to the closed beta.  Yes, it's different that the norm, but it's how it's done here.

If you pay attention to the forums before the pre-order starts, Brad and the others make it pretty darn clear how the Beta's gonna work.  It works the same way for every game they make that we can preoder.  Always has, and probably always will. 

And every time, there's a couple of people that feel like they got burned.

It's getting to the point that I think SD needs to put a big flashing banner on the preorder that says, "Hey, buddy!  We've warned you - there's no turning back if you click!"

 

Yeah, it sucks that you feel that you were taken advantage of...but if you'd paid attention around here before you ordered, you would have seen what you were getting.  I know that before the Beta went out, there were a very good number of threads titled things like, "When does the Beta start" etc, and most of them had warnings from Brad as to how the pre-order/beta works.

I know it's hard to trust game companies, but that's what you need to do with SD.  You pre-order, and in response, StarDock promises you a game some time down the line.  I've never known them to cancel a game that I've paid to pre-order.  Sure, I'm taking it on faith that the finished product is going to be something I like - but in the mean time, I am rewarded for my faith by being allowed to play the game as it's being made, make suggestions and ultimetly make it my own.  For example, there were conversations that I was involved in with SoaSE that eventually made it in to the game.  To me, that's just down-right cool.

I know, this post rambled all over the place, but I wanted to put my 2¢ in.

 

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October 13, 2008 4:01:34 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Quoting Weidbrewer,
*Rushes in panting, out of breath* As per usual, I am late to the party.  [...] I know, this post rambled all over the place, but I wanted to put my 2¢ in.

Welcome to the party !   I, for one, am not bored by this thread ... even though some feel that it has reached a Mexican standoff.

"Rambled all over the place" ?! I didn't perceive that : you were on-topic all the way through.

Just 2¢ ?! You're being too humble. I'm giving you   to illustrate my appreciation.   [still imitating Annatar!]

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October 13, 2008 8:09:49 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Sorry I haven't gotten into this sooner but been extremely busy.

Just to state official policy on the matter: (same policy we had with Sins of a Solar Empire, GalCiv II, GalCiv I, Object Desktop, etc.)

IF you don't download the beta, you can cancel it at any time for a full refund. The system knows if you have downloaded the game to your account. 

IF you have downloaded the beta, then at that point, you've gone beyond merely pre-ordering it. The betas are not designed as a "try before you buy" type thing. These aren't demos and we actually put considerable effort to ensure that the betas are not fun in order to get beta testers to focus on the key objectives of a given beta build.

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October 13, 2008 10:07:03 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Case and point this was not clearly stated and as a new customer I'm very disappointed. Yes, I downloaded the beta, played it for a day or so, posted the most bugs then stopped. But the whole point to this thread is Stardock did NOT make it clear that you could not cancel pre order because the product you bought was beta software. Also you say if you read through the other forums you would find this out, I shouldn't have to search through thousands of posts to find out about a companies unique stance on somthing like this. As a new customer, this isn't as obvious as many people seem to think. Yes, I understand people who have been with SD for awhile already knew all of these rules, but I did not.

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October 13, 2008 10:31:16 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Stardock did NOT make it clear that you could not cancel pre order because the product you bought was beta software

 

The product you bought was the FULL game NOT the BETA. You can't expect a 100% refund when you have already received the "perks" of preordering the product.

 

"This beta program is only open to those who pre-order the game directly through Stardock/Impulse"

Keyword there 'ONLY'.

 

Not having a go at you mate. But being a new customer is no excuse. I too am a new customer, i have 1 other SD product (SoaSE) which i bought at a retail shop. If you look at my membership number i registered way after you did so your point is moot. I assumed something like a percentage fee will incur if you cancel the preorder after downloading the beta. That is the whole reason they process payment on release of the beta key. I just thought it was logical thinking, obviously i was wrong and some people need it clearly stated in big fonts/banner or perhaps a marquee.

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October 13, 2008 11:33:20 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

No, a lot of you are being rude and ignorant in this thread. No I don't need a banner, but you should have it known. Sorry, but the beta shouldn't cost me 25% on $60.00. Sorry, but if you do things a lot different than other companies just let us know. And it's not logical thinking.

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October 13, 2008 11:57:18 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Quoting CrimsonTears88,
No, a lot of you are being rude and ignorant in this thread. No I don't need a banner, but you should have it known. Sorry, but the beta shouldn't cost me 25% on $60.00. Sorry, but if you do things a lot different than other companies just let us know. And it's not logical thinking, please.

 

Again, the beta didn't cost you anything.  The full game did.  You agreed to purchase the product IN ADVANCE.  You did NOT purchase the Beta, the Beta was a side "benefit" (to use the word loosely) to commiting to the purchase of Demigods [Full Game].  If you were unsure in any way, shape, or form about the purchase of said product, you should NOT have made the purchase until either you had the chance to try the game (post-release *demo*) or were satisfied with reviews/user comments.

 

Also, disagreeing with the OP != rude/ignorant.  It signifies difference of opinion--something you're bound to come across if you post your own opinion on an issue.

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October 14, 2008 12:12:43 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Quoting Frogboy,

IF you don't download the beta, you can cancel it at any time for a full refund. The system knows if you have downloaded the game to your account. 

Thanks for the official word on this. Your policy sounds perfectly reasonable.

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October 14, 2008 12:24:01 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Quoting xXAequitasXx,

Again, the beta didn't cost you anything.  The full game did.  You agreed to purchase the product IN ADVANCE.  You did NOT purchase the Beta, the Beta was a side "benefit" (to use the word loosely) to commiting to the purchase of Demigods [Full Game].  If you were unsure in any way, shape, or form about the purchase of said product, you should NOT have made the purchase until either you had the chance to try the game (post-release *demo*) or were satisfied with reviews/user comments.

 

Also, disagreeing with the OP != rude/ignorant.  It signifies difference of opinion--something you're bound to come across if you post your own opinion on an issue.

If you read the refund policy it is worded that we bought beta software, well it is if you say we don't deserve the 100% refund. And I have said this serveral times I'm not cancelling due to gameplay. I preordered the game to make sure I got it, like you do with a lot of other games ( my example was the WoW : WotLK CE. )

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October 14, 2008 1:14:16 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

I think a real-world physical analogy is in order...

 

The T-Mobile G-1 (dream) phone is due to come out on the 22nd. 1.5 million people pre-ordererd one.

 

What does this mean?

1) They will get the phone shipped to them.

2) They are NOT garanteed that the phone will be shipped early, nor are they garanteed that it will be released on the 22nd. They are just garanteed to get the phone before other online orders do.

3) If they don't like the phone because they tried it out at a friend's house, then it will not get their refunt except where permitted. If the phone does not work in their area with 3G service, they might get a refund.

 

The same applies here.

1) You pre-order the game. Therefore you are garanteed to get a copy when it is shipped (if you ordered the CD, digital... duh)

2) You are GARANTEED to get the game. If not then stardock will refund you. OR they will have to pay a hefty ammount: The pre-order price plus your legal expenses to sue them. After all you pre-ordered a product that you expect to be given to you. You bought an item that will exist. If the item will not exist then your transaction was void. You did NOT buy a promise, you bought an item.

3) As an added perk and incentive to help fund some development by pre-ordering you get the following:

- Access to BETA. You are bored, and you like demigod, its a perfect match.

- Ability to shape the game, you give feedback which at this stage gets read and seriously considered. If you don't like something NOW it may very well be changed to your liking before it is released. This is not true with post-release feedback. Post-release is usually balancing, some tweaks, but generally the game mechanics are set in stone.

4) Unfortunately this also means you get the game before any reviews are written (at this point there is no point in reviews)

 

Now if you were unclear about why you pre-ordered then it is a mistake on your part to blindly pre-order something when you are not even confident that you will ever like it. If there is a technical challenge: "My game won't start, and stardock is not addressing it at all, thus negating any benefit of me pre-ordering" then make your case to their support.

 

In any case, I hope I get into Beta 2 to see this game soon. If I don't like it I'll give my license to a friend who would.

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October 14, 2008 2:25:24 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

So far everyone has been discussing my first two questions.  I think it's pretty clear now what the answer is and it's essentially in stone.  I'm glad that Brad makes a case for 100% refund if you haven't played the beta yet, but I really wish he would he advertised that somewhere.  For me, I genuinely wanted to preorder to get on the mailing list.  I don't have time to babysit when a game is coming out and I wanted to be alerted as soon as it was available.  The beta was merely a perk.

Had I known a 100% refund was available had I NOT touched the beta, I would have never downloaded it to keep my options flexible.  When there's a "negative" to any action you take, you need to do your due diligence to ensure the customer is adequately informed. 

Anyways, with all that said, this leads me to my third question I had posted in the OP.

"c ) is it possible to move the demigod pre-order to another (new) stardock account?"

In other words, can I create a new account and move demigod there?  Can I move other games to other stardock accounts?  (could I say, move sins of a solar empire onto another account?)  I currently have 2 accounts because one had a password problem at a time when I wanted to buy galciv.  I'd like to know if I have to option to move games between these accounts or to consolidate them.

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October 14, 2008 3:57:28 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

At this point keep my money, I don't even care anymore, no one is handling this correctly. As for someone who has worked in customer service for a long time, yours is poor. Your stance was unclear and not shown to others correctly. I've uninstalled Impulse and just gave up. This has been obscene and taken too long. To leave a bad taste in people's mouths for just 25% is sad. I love RTS and hoped SD was going to show a bright future, now I'll never bother with them again.

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October 14, 2008 9:27:52 AM from Stardock Forums Stardock Forums

At this point keep my money, I don't even care anymore, no one is handling this correctly. As for someone who has worked in customer service for a long time, yours is poor. Your stance was unclear and not shown to others correctly. I've uninstalled Impulse and just gave up. This has been obscene and taken too long. To leave a bad taste in people's mouths for just 25% is sad. I love RTS and hoped SD was going to show a bright future, now I'll never bother with them again.
A public forum really isn't the best place to handle this if you really wanted to get it resolved.  Emailing sales and support would have been the way to go.  This forum doesn't make or enforce customer service policies.  It's a way to discuss and sometimes company representitives pop in.

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October 14, 2008 9:41:17 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

I think everything that can be said on the topic has been said.

The Demigod beta is not a demo or a shareware program. 

A person who pre-orders the game gains access to the beta. A user who pre-orders can cancel their order at any time for a full refund prior to actually getting the game.

Someone who pre-orders the game, installs Impulse, downloads the game, installs the game, plays the game is certainly not just a person who pre-ordered the game. They are trying out the game in beta form. A beta that has been explicitly and intentionally made not very fun in order to focus players on testing the components and not playing for fun.

We apologize to those who don't feel that the policy is "clear enough", we have been running pre-order betas just like this for 15 years now and in that time, only a handful of users have ever had difficulty understanding the difference between pre-ordering a game and downloading/installing/playing the beta and then later wanting a refund because they didn't like the beta.  

Thread closed.

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