Grey market game key reseller G2A announced today that it is extending the deadline on its proposed and much-publicized keyblocking tool. G2A initially scheduled to close signups on Aug. 15 but has since extended until the end of the month to allow time for other developers to register their interest.
A meager 19 developers have signed up as of writing, jeopardizing the entire scheme before it even gets off the ground. G2A indicated last month that it needs at least 100 developers to begin development.
Developer Backlash Prompts Tool Offer From G2A
G2A proposed the tool in response to a tumultuous few weeks as it weathered backlash led by developer No More Robots for selling illegitimate keys and penalizing small independent game developers.
According to G2A, the proposed tool would allow developers free reign to blacklist review and giveaway keys – two categories of keys the reseller has pinpointed as susceptible to abuse. Should a seller attempt to sell one of the earmarked keys, the new system would block the key and remove it from listings on G2A.
A petition spearheaded by No More Robots founder Mike Rose for the site to stop selling indie titles on its platform has amassed over 6,200 signatures and counting. To highlight how disadvantageous the reseller’s policies were to developers, Rose made the unprecedented move of encouraging consumers to pirate games rather than purchase them from G2A.
G2A was also called out for soliciting non-disclosed sponsored coverage from news outlets in the wake of the controversy.
Lack of Developer Interest Comes as No Surprise
– I don't work for you, it's your job to protect the customers you sell unchecked keys to, not mine.
– I don't endorse or work with grey markets, or folks that secretly pay for positive press
– bot farmed 'gift' exploitation is the issue, not keys, and you know this, obviously https://t.co/1qQzkOU3rY
— Mike Bithell (@mikeBithell) July 12, 2019
We reached out for comment on the lack of developer pickup. Referring us to the tweet above by fellow developer, Mike Bithell, Rose explained;
“I refuse to work with G2A, because the moment I do, I’m working directly with a dodgy key reseller. So I’m really not surprised at all that barely any devs signed up to it.”
It’s difficult to argue with his analysis off the situation. Dismal pickup figures are a sure sign that developers have lost faith in G2A getting its act together despite the offer of a bespoke tool – a proposal that, more than ever, rings hollow.