So I thought about buying Company of Heroes from Steam or Impulse (once it is available) but after some thinking I decided against that and will buy it in a shop because it is the better choice for me.
I find it discomforting that just because I get something digitally I don't have the same rights as when buying it in a store so I made the logical choice. If it was expected to be cheaper than in the shop I might have decided otherwise but with this regional pricing (I don't have a problem with that) it is pretty obvious it will cost more or less the same. Sure digital distribution has some nice advantages for TheLazyOne but its not enough to make up for binding the game unremovable to myself when I the retail copy gives me the option to burrow it to friends (which I do regularly) or to sell it (which I've never done yet, but its nice to know I can).
So with the current business practice, physical copies are superior to digital versions and people might be inclined to buy the physical copy because they then actually own the game.
"HOLD ON! You don't own the game, you own a license!" - nonsense, if I buy the game in a shop I own the game in the same way as I own a book, a poster, a Vinyl or a Film and every other goods* I own. I don't own the artistic and technical work in it but I can freely burrow, exchange and trade them without breaking any law. Have you ever heard writers complaining that people burrow books to their friends or that there are Librarys (you know that thing where you can get entertainment for free and which surprisingly didn't kill all the book stores yet)? I buy about 20-30 books every year and I lend almost every book I to at least one of my friends and surely got hundreds of books burrowed from them already, but this doesn't stop anyone of us to buy books, same for CDs and Films (the numbers are smaller though).
Okay, the developers/publisher wouldn't get any money directly from that so why should Steam or Impulse allow that? Maybe because they would sell more copies as they don't give the buyer less rights compared to buying it in a store then. Surely it could be abused but so could the "return of money if you run into technical problems" and from what I read it wasn't abused yet so why should it be different with the ability to transfer games to friends. To be clear, all I want is being able to transfer it to my friends account, it is not the responsibility of Valve or Stardock to have a 2nd-hand selling platform, finding a trustworthy solution for transactions with strangers is up to themselves.
As final note, the current policy could also turn out very interesting once Demigod is released, someone buys it in a german store, binds it to his account and then can't transfer that game to another person. I think I've read reasoning like "he can still transfer it just can't get patches and play no online multiplayer. Those are not part of the purchase anyways". I totally agree with the patches but not about the multiplayer at least when it is mentioned on the box. If it is mentioned on the box it is part of the purchase and not being able to transfer the multiplayer part of Demigod would be a deliberate reduction of the quality of the game which violates the German Civil Code and could get the german publisher for Demigod in some trouble if someone takes it to court and wants a test case. Wouldn't be very good publicity surely.