Steam user gets refund for "amazing" game because it's short, rebuys it after dev highlights...


Posts: 6,763   +61
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What just happened? Steam's refund policy is a feature we can appreciate as gamers. But, like everything in life, there are those who will exploit something meant to help people. One player got a refund for a short game despite calling it "amazing" in a review, leading to the developer calling them out. Surprisingly, the person rebought it.

As reported by PC Gamer, Before Your Eyes is a unique game in which players control the narrative using blinks picked up by a webcam. It has an Overwhelmingly Positive rating on Stream and received plenty of glowing reviews from critics. As you might imagine, this story of a soul's journey into the afterlife can easily be completed in under two hours, allowing unscrupulous types to buy, finish, and return the game. Steam's policy allows refunds "within two weeks of purchase and with less than two hours of playtime."

Before Your Eyes lead designer and programmer Bela Messex knew that someone called Travis had praised the game but also got their money back.

"Yep we made a short game," wrote Messex in a tweet. "I think there should be more short games. I think short games shouldn't get refunded for delivering an amazing experience."

This is usually where the story would end, but it seems Travis felt bad about his actions; he rebought the game a day later and added a new paragraph to his review.

"Yes, the game is short, but it has an underlying reason for this," he wrote. "Life itself is short and can be gone in the blink of an eye, which kinda seems to be the point of making the game controlled by blinking in the first place. It's worth your $10 and even if you beat the game in enough time to do so, you shouldn't exploit Steam's system and refund it."

Travis also apologized to Messex, saying it was "scummy" to ask for a refund despite finishing and enjoying Before Your Eyes.

The whole incident has given Messex an idea for another game. Called "Refund this game," it would display a counter that counts down from two hours in real-time. Players must hit a button within the five seconds before the timer runs out to get refunded. If not, they're stuck with it. The twist is that the game's proposed price is $99.99. Whether Steam would allow this or consider it trolling is debatable.

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Posts: 40   +33
The only thing I disagree with is the propagation of the "life is short" attitude from the Devs. Life is fleeting. Yes. But I haven't done anything in my life as long as my heart has been beating.


Posts: 133   +94
I never cheat the system like that - if it's too expensive, I'll wait for a sale.

I only request a refund if the game play sucks, or if it's riddled with bugs (but I understand there are always *******s who love to game the system)


Posts: 66   +75
While I agree it's bad practice to request a refund for a product you enjoyed, I don't really see this as a problem overall.

Basically what this says to me is that, if you're game doesn't provide entertainment for more than two hours, steam isn't the platform for you.

As a steam user I have no problem setting the minimum bar at two hours and if I ever mistakenly purchased a game that short I'd be disappointed and probably refund it immediately.


Posts: 888   +1,270
Gamers like Travis should stick to the Epic store. It caters to destructive locusts that view gaming as itself some form of competition to mainline the most content as fast as humanly possible for nothing.
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The only thing I disagree with is the propagation of the "life is short" attitude from the Devs. Life is fleeting. Yes. But I haven't done anything in my life as long as my heart has been beating.

I believe it was the reviewer that said that in his second post after rebuying the game.
$10 for 1.5hrs of entertainment? A little bit of a premium for a game (comparatively), but I've bought $15-20 movie tickets that weren't really worth the price...

Yep and if you wanted to see that movie again you'd have to pay another $15-$20 and if you decided you wanted to own it on BluRay (lol) when it came out that'd be another $20+ and when the diode eventually fails on your aging PS4 it'll be another $10+ for a digital copy