Square Enix sent over an official statement:
"As part of Deus Ex: Human Revolution's boxed offering on PC, Square Enix included a third party coupon. GameStop was not made aware of this inclusion and Square Enix respects the right of GameStop to have final say over the contents of products it sells and to adjust them where they see fit in accordance with their policies.
Square Enix invites gamers who want to purchase the PC version of Deus Ex: Human Revolution without additional coupons to buy the game at any one of over 4000 GameStop stores in North America or purchase a digital download copy online from www.gamestop.com."
In response to criticism over its decision to remove OnLive licenses from the PC copies of Deus Ex: Human Revolution, GameStop has pulled all physical PC copies of the game from its store shelves as well as its website. Console copies are still available from the retailer, however PC copies are only available as a download code which can be registered on Steam.
GameStop has directed its stores to make the physical PC copies available only to those who have pre-ordered the game. Customers who purchased the physical PC copy and did not get the OnLive license can return the game to GameStop for a full refund so long as they have a receipt.
Customers wishing to purchase a PC copy of the game with both a Steam license and an OnLive license can do so at any other retailer stocking the game (ex. Amazon, Best Buy, Target, Wal-Mart, etc.).
Earlier today, Gamespy reported that GameStop was pulling the OnLive activation codes from all PC retail boxed copies of Deus Ex: Human Revolution. We just received word from GameStop that this was done at the direction of the corporate office and is a company-wide policy.
"We pulled the coupons because, like all retailers, we prefer not to promote our competitors and their competing offerings and services in our stores. Unfortunately, the coupon was packed without our prior knowledge," said Larine Nixon, manager, corporate communications in response to our e-mail query.
This is despite the fact that the retail boxed PC version of Deus Ex: Human Revolution was advertised by Square Enix as containing two licenses for the game. One activation code in the box would allow you to download and install a copy from Valve's Steam service, while the second activation code would allow you to stream the game on-demand from OnLive.
From the e-mail message we received, it would seem that GameStop does not see Steam as a competitor (as it did not remove the Steam activation codes) but does see OnLive as a competitor. This is odd, as GameStop offers its own digital download service (which competes directly with Steam) but does not currently offer a streaming service.
What does this mean for you as a consumer?
If you bought a retail boxed PC copy of Deus Ex: Human Revolution (standard or augmented) from GameStop, you only got half of what you paid for. GameStop's corporate office did not respond to our question about the possibility of refunds for consumers who did not get the OnLive activation code that was supposed to be in the box. Any questions about refunds should probably be directed to the store where you purchased your copy.
Based on the messages currently being directed at the GameStop Twitter account, it seems as though there are a number of customers that are very unhappy with the situation.
We'll have more as it becomes available.
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