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Natural Selection 2 dev admits he was wrong about G2A complaint

A developer that accused key-reselling site G2A of costing it £300K in credit card fraud chargebacks has admitted he was wrong. 

Charlie Cleveland – founder and game director at Subnautica developer Unknown Worlds – shared his experience with G2A on Twitter and asked G2A to refund “10 times the money” he alleges was lost after the developer was forced to refund illegally purchased copies of Natural Selection 2 that he alleged had been sold fraudulently on the site.

“Hey [G2A] – thank you for offering to pay 10x the revenue lost due to our [Natural Selection 2] game keys sold on your shady platform,” he wrote. “You now owe us $300,000. Thanks.”

The online marketplace hit back at the statement, maintaining it did not exist in 2013 and adding its predecessor Go2Arena wasn’t a marketplace selling third-party keys until the following year. G2A’s head of communications, Maciej Kuc, then reached out to MCV and posted a blog post in response to the claims made by Cleveland regarding revenue lost due to fraudulent sales of Natural Selection 2.

Cleveland has now retracted the statement.

“It does appear that G2A is right,” Cleveland acknowledged to Kotaku (thanks, VG24/7). “They weren’t the source of these original $30k keys. It doesn’t LOOK like they were selling grey-market keys at the time we had all those chargebacks. But they’ve been doing it ever since.”

He also added that whilst G2A says it will delist games upon request, he believes G2A hasn’t compiled. “They’ve never done it,” Cleveland said. “They just change the conversations to us selling our keys formally through them.”

After a number of independent developers publicly requested players to pirate their games rather than buy them through key reseller marketplace G2A last month, G2A said it would “pay developers 10 times the money they lost on chargebacks after their illegally obtained keys were sold on G2A” if the developers “prove such a thing actually happened on their stores”. It also wrote a lengthy justification for its business practices, stating: “it’s a good thing that people can re-sell keys and, with or without G2A, they will continue to do so”.

In response to a petition pushing G2A to stop selling independent games through its site, G2A then detailed a new system that enables developers to block keys they don’t want to be sold on its marketplace. Citing the project as being “time-consuming and expensive”, the company asked for developers to register their interest. If the project received 100 signatories between now and August 15th, it would develop the new system, but at the time of writing, only 19 companies had gone ahead and registered interest in G2A’s proposal.

About Vikki Blake

It took 15 years of civil service monotony for Vikki to crack and switch to writing about games. She has since become an experienced reporter and critic working with a number of specialist and mainstream outlets in both the UK and beyond.

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