Steam rarely offers refunds, but unhappy gamers can now get their money back on purchases of Colin McRae Rally from Valve’s digital game store.
The driving game for PC and Mac only released seven days ago, but it quickly attracted swathes of negative reviews from Steam customers who felt they’d been duped. Many bought the game believing it was a direct reworking of either the original 1998 PlayStation and PC classic or the sequel from 2000. It’s actually a port of a mobile game from 2013.
Some negative reviews cited a lack of disclosure about the game’s mobile roots, and developer Codemasters has since updated the product description to include the phrase “Colin McRae Rally features the car and track list from last year’s top selling mobile title.”
Codemasters community manager Lee Williams took to the Steam discussion boards yesterday to broker peace and offer disgruntled customers a full refund on their $6.99 purchase price.
“At Codemasters, we care about our customers and pride ourselves on listening to our community,” said Williams. “We understand that some people who bought Colin McRae Rally on Steam are upset and feel that it isn’t the game they thought it would be. We have now updated the product description for clarification.”
“Furthermore, as an act of good faith,” he continued, “we have worked with Valve to enable anyone that bought the game to claim a refund. The ability to refund will be available until the 19th August.”
Unsatisfied customers should go to their Steam account transactions page where they will see a “Refund” button for Colin McRae Rally.
“We hope this goes some way to restoring any lost faith and thank you, as always, for your continued support,” said Williams.
The community’s response to the move has been generally positive.
It’s not often that Steam customers get refunded for games they’re unhappy with. The official Steam refund policy states: “As with most software products, unless required by local law, we do not offer refunds or exchanges on games, DLC, or in-game items purchased on our website or through the Steam Client.”
Recent exceptions to this rule included Ubisoft’s god simulator From Dust, which failed to inform gamers that it required a constant online connection to play, and zombie survival game War Z, which Steam pulled from its store following widespread criticism.