Wube, the developer of Factorio, is actually testing G2A’s promise to pay developers ten-times lost revenue on chargebacks.
G2A, in case you missed it, recently attempted to deflect the negative press around it by offering to pay developers who have fallen victims to fraudulent credit card purchases tenfold the money lost, if they can prove the stolen keys ended up on G2A.
The company said it’ll hire and independent third-party auditor to investigate, and will even shoulder 100% of the cost of the first three audits. In response, Factorio developer Wube Software, which had the exact same problem with fraudulent credit card purchases, applied for the audit.
In a blog post, the developer revealed that around the game’s launch on Steam in 2016, over 300 keys were purchased with stolen credit cards. Because the developer had to pay between $15-20 per key as a chargeback fee, Wube essentially lost $6,600 – not to mention refunding the money and revoking the keys.
“So I emailed G2A about the article and their ‘vow’ last week, and they are not exactly prompt in terms of dealing with the request,” wrote the game’s community manager, Scott Klonan.
“I have a list of all the Steam keys I had to revoke because they were purchased fraudulently, and G2A offered to check the keys.”
But that’s all G2A did up to that point, having not yet returned Klonan’s emails or revealed how many of the keys in Klonan’s email were actually sold on the G2A marketplace.
The real problem, however, as many other developers said in the past, is the support Wube was expected to provide to customers who bought these stolen keys, many of whom sent angry emails after getting their keys revoked.
Klonan also touched on the Steam gift problem, which essentially allows sellers to create bot accounts and purchase gifts of Factorio on Steam, with the intention of selling them later. This is done by exploiting regional prices where applicable, or buying the game on sale/before an expected price hike to later sell it at a profit.
As we recently pointed out, Steam gifts make up a significant chunk of sales on G2A. Unlike keys, they’re harder to track since the seller just provides a one-time, shady URL that sends the gift to the customer’s Steam account.
In closing, Klonan asked those interested in Factorio to purchase the game directly from the developer’s store, or through official partners like Steam and Humble, reiterating that pirating the game is better than buying it through G2A.