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Orange Box In Stores Wednesday

Zonk posted about 7 years ago | from the crowbars-at-the-ready dept.

162

Ars Technica is reporting on an announcement from Valve: the Orange Box will be in stores on Wednesday. For those folks who purchased the pack through Steam, all five games will be 'unlocked' just after midnight that day. If you're like me and already owned HL2 and HL2:Episode One, the 'giveaway keys' should be available at that time as well. "In our last bit of Orange Box news, Valve has been running a television commercial for the Orange Box. It had to have been hard to make all those different games look like one cohesive package, but the company did a great job. The Orange Box can't come soon enough."

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WTF? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20905041)

> The official Orange Box Gifts FAQ also says that purchasers of the Orange Box via physical means will also be able to give away their licenses individually.

Once upon a time, when I bought a box full of games and had a duplicate, I just gave the CD, and the CD-key printed on the label, to my friend.

No vendor needed to know my email address, and they sure as fuck didn't need to know my friend's email address.

In fact, neither of us needed an internet connection and a subscription-based DRM system either.

blasphemy (0, Redundant)

User 956 (568564) | about 7 years ago | (#20905097)

In fact, neither of us needed an internet connection and a subscription-based DRM system either.

What, you don't welcome your new subscription-based DRM overlords?

Get with the times. (3, Insightful)

gumpish (682245) | about 7 years ago | (#20905137)

In fact, neither of us needed an internet connection and a subscription-based DRM system either.
I have to wonder if there's any intersection between the people who complain about digital distribution of software (a la Steam) and people who shriek and throw feces at the entertainment industry for not changing their business model to center around digital distribution.

Re:Get with the times. (4, Insightful)

Chris Burke (6130) | about 7 years ago | (#20905259)

Well he is talking about walking to the store and buying a physical copy, so I think it's a valid complaint. If the music industry's digital enlightenment involved them tying their online distribution to physical CDs so even though you bought a CD you still had to register online to actually use it, I think anyone who asked the music industry to change distribution models would be correct to say "That's not what we meant".

Online distribution is supposed to make getting media without purchasing a physical object easier. It's not supposed to make buying a physical object should you choose more of a chore. :P

Re:Get with the times. (1)

Brian Gordon (987471) | about 7 years ago | (#20906241)

What is he whining about? Valve is doing this as a service to their customers.. granted it's kind of a ripoff since they cancelled Black Box, but allowing customers to give away duplicate programs that they bought through Steam is a great idea. If you bought it on disk originally, there's nothing keeping you from giving it you your friend (as long as it's not multiplayer)

Re:Get with the times. (2, Informative)

Tackhead (54550) | about 7 years ago | (#20905373)

> I have to wonder if there's any intersection between the people who complain about digital distribution of software (a la Steam) and people who shriek and throw feces at the entertainment industry for not changing their business model to center around digital distribution.

I don't see anyone clamoring for the music industry to deliver "you download the song, then your MP3 player contacts the mothership to confirm that it's authorized to decrypt the song on your player, and if you leave your MP3 player unplugged from your computer for more than 30 days, you have to phone home the next time you plug it in. We also have the right to automatically "update" the Original Explicit Mix with the Radio Edit Mix if Wal-Mart decides it won't sell our records if the singer uses the word "fuck".)

Actually, I see plenty of RIAA and MPAA executives clamoring shrieking and throwing feces in favor of that model of digital distribution. But I don't think you were talking about those particular monkeys :)

Me? I wonder about the intersection between the people who think Steam's a wonderful content delivery system, but who shriek and throw feces at Microsoft for XP, Vista, and WGA. They're the really weird ones.

Re:Get with the times. (1)

complete loony (663508) | about 7 years ago | (#20905535)

In AU stores I believe the orange box is retailing between AU$79 and AU$99. But with the current exchange rate you'd be much better off buying direct from steam. When I pre-ordered it only cost AU$54 including VISA's currency conversion fees, and I believe the exchange rate has tipped even further in our favour.

Re:Get with the times. (2, Insightful)

matazar (1104563) | about 7 years ago | (#20905613)

It's the same in Canada. It looks like it's about $60 to buy it here, or I can buy it on steam for $45, since USD = CAD right now.

They really need to fix that, we have an issue with our books, since the price is still listed on books as USD = $14.99 || CAD = $19.99, when our dollar is the same.

Re:Get with the times. (1)

topham (32406) | about 7 years ago | (#20906173)

Add 2.5% (aprox) for the Credit Card transaction... love the banks.

Re:Get with the times. (1)

TheThiefMaster (992038) | about 7 years ago | (#20908271)

Even adding on 17.5% tax it's only £26. The RRP is £30 for the PC version (though it can be found online for £25+delivery), or £50 (£40 online) for the console versions.

Seems that the PC boxed version is pretty competitive with the steam version, and console gamers get ripped off again :)
Anyone who says a console is cheaper than a pc, but has a shelf-full of games, should have "higher initial investment for lower long-term cost" explained to them.

Re:WTF? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20905177)

Once upon a time, I jizzed on your mom's tits.
8===D~~~(.(.)

Re:WTF? (0, Flamebait)

kcbanner (929309) | about 7 years ago | (#20905179)

Who the fuck modded this troll?
OP is perfectly right! "Here give your friend this game! LOL we now own your friends life too!"

Re:WTF? (1)

IdeaMan (216340) | about 7 years ago | (#20905393)

That happened long ago, you see buried in the fine print they acquired the rights to all your wealth, all your friends wealth, and the wealth of all your offspring. You DID read the fine print like I did didn't you? (oh wait...)
Seriously though, they've owned my soul ever since TFC came out, and again when Counterstrike reigned supreme, (m4a1 + scope those were the days), and again with Natural Selection. So by my count, I gotta sell 3 of my friends souls to them just to get break even. I've put off getting HL2 for a coupla reasons, but now that TF2 is out, that Schloooooping sound you hear next will be all my waking hours being chewed up by their DRM-infested-hacker-riddled but still totally awesome game that is the successor to TF2.
Oh and if you accuse me of hacking, COOL. I love compliments!

Re:WTF? (1, Funny)

Kingrames (858416) | about 7 years ago | (#20906869)

Yeah but you had to walk to the store, and that means risking your LIFE to a TERRORIST.

You could have DIED, man! DRM's quite preferable to that.

Re:WTF? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20907051)

OOOOOH NOOOOOO! They need your fucking e-mail address! God save us all when companies think they have a right to ask for a measly, piece of information. Especially one that can be obtained en [google.com] masse [google.com] for free [google.com] . I mean, ask for my phone number and call me up on my time to conduct basic business anyday. Or better yet, get my home address and send me snail mail to receive product codes or something.

Re:WTF? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20907475)

So dont buy it through steam... buy it in the store and do what you just said. They offer both forms of distribution, how is it insightful to bash the one that you dont like, when the one you like is available...

Re:WTF? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20909845)

Wow what an incredibly insightful point. No, wait, it's fucking stupid, because the box just contains slips of paper with numbers on that you enter in to Steam.

Giveaway Keys are Live (3, Informative)

Bieeanda (961632) | about 7 years ago | (#20905043)

A new column in the 'My Games' tab titled 'Gifts' appeared earlier today, with listings beside my installs of HL2 and EP1. According to the official forums, that system is live.

Re:Giveaway Keys are Live (1)

The MAZZTer (911996) | about 7 years ago | (#20906039)

You neglect to mention that while the system is live, you still don't get gift passes until the 10th

Also, this column only shows you whether you have gifts. You'd give them the same way you give guest passes (Games > Manage...).

Re:Giveaway Keys are Live (1)

desenz (687520) | about 7 years ago | (#20907211)

Nope. I gave gift passes to my brother about 6PM EST. Worked fine.

rocket science (4, Funny)

User 956 (568564) | about 7 years ago | (#20905075)

It had to have been hard to make all those different games look like one cohesive package

Not really, I mean, it looks like they just put them in an orange box, and named it "the orange box".

Re:rocket science (1)

pclminion (145572) | about 7 years ago | (#20906415)

No shit. First time I saw the commercial I thought to myself "What the hell kind of name for a game is 'The Orange Box?'" I had no clue it was a collection of multiple games until I read this article just now.

Way to go marketing "geniuses."

Re:rocket science (1)

msimm (580077) | about 7 years ago | (#20908421)

Lol. Not to mention they show Source games. Even TF2 is still obviously a Source derivative, down to some of the sounds. If the game play wasn't so...playable, I'd think I'd been tricked into playing another round of HL2MP (shudder).

Whoever told Valve games should be fun should get a raise. Maybe next they can do a little less simplifying...

Cohesive? (2, Insightful)

SnoopJeDi (859765) | about 7 years ago | (#20905077)

Personally, I think the commercial is awful for any casual gamers. It's really obscure, and doesn't really specify WHAT the games are.

If I didn't know what these games were, I'd rather just see an infomercial-type ad with a picture of the set and a guy telling me wtf it is.

That said, I'm not a casual gamer, and I've anticipated Portal since it was announced. So I loved the commercial.

Re:Cohesive? (1)

matazar (1104563) | about 7 years ago | (#20905527)

I think it gives you enough of a picture to make you curious enough to go online and figure out what the orange box is all about, which was their goal. They did an amazing job with doing that for Portal. Not to mention, they have a big enough following for half life that I'm sure word of mouth did enough alone. Considering the box has already gone gold.

Re:Cohesive? (1)

Dr. Eggman (932300) | about 7 years ago | (#20905971)

I would agree with you, had only I not seen the Halo 3 "Action figures with solemn music" ad the very day before it. In fact, looking back on a lot of FPS, and other gaming ads (I'm looking at you, Sony) the Orange Box commercial looks positively informative. At least this one actually had any gameplay videos in it.

Re:Cohesive? (1)

Pvt_Waldo (459439) | about 7 years ago | (#20908545)

I'd beg to differ. Valve is a company that could put a picture of a crowbar on a page with no text and people immediately go nuts because they knew it was Half-Life 2.

Random Opportunistic Mod Plugging of the Day! (5, Interesting)

Ford Prefect (8777) | about 7 years ago | (#20905111)

Got a copy of Episode One, and want some more single-player Half-Life 2 before going all orangey with the Orange Box on Wednesday?

I prescribe my own MINERVA [hylobatidae.org] , complete with needlessly cryptic website.

Random games journalist types are quite keen on it [rockpapershotgun.com] . No bribery was involved whatsoever, honest. Other links? Wikipedia! [wikipedia.org] My blog-thing! [hylobatidae.org] ... Um ... Valve Developer Community! [valvesoftware.com] Even Steam! [steampowered.com]

Described by random inhabitants of the internet as having: "extremely bad writing", with "some of the most dreadfully boring environments you'll ever see" - the "puzzles and triggers in the game are horrific", and "combat is done exactly the wrong way" - what are you waiting for?

Re:Random Opportunistic Mod Plugging of the Day! (2, Informative)

Rowan_u (859287) | about 7 years ago | (#20905251)

Just wanted to add here, that despite the self depreciation. . . I loved Minerva! Maybe even more than the main game (with the exception of the antlion bits). Writing was superb, and the way you left me staring down turrets with no grav-gun really opened me up to what's possible in the source engine. Running mad dash style while holding a barrel in front of your face for cover, then attempting to pick up one turret and throw it into another is simply something that never occurred to me while in possession of the mighty grav-gun. All around great mod. Still waiting for the conclusion btw.

         

Why Adam!? (1)

Winckle (870180) | about 7 years ago | (#20905287)

I've been waiting for this mod for a very long time, following you since the start, and you choose to release it in the busiest gaming period of my lifetime!

Thanks a bunch :(

Downloading now ;)

Re:Random Opportunistic Mod Plugging of the Day! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20905411)

What about the enormous piles of Cocaine you sent us, mate?

KG
(RPS)

Mod parent up, plzkthx. (2, Interesting)

Bieeanda (961632) | about 7 years ago | (#20905519)

Seriously. Minerva is one of the most singularly impressive single-player mods that I've ever had the pleasure of playing through. Anyone who has HL2 and hasn't played through this is missing something wonderful.

Re:Random Opportunistic Mod Plugging of the Day! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20906097)

How do you get it to run without a Steam account? I can get HL2 working but not this.

I DO own a copy of the game but I can't access tinternet from my games PC.

My steam account is on a different PC.

Re:Random Opportunistic Mod Plugging of the Day! (1)

atomic-penguin (100835) | about 7 years ago | (#20907797)

Congratulations on finishing up your mod, Adam. Some of the greatest map design I've seen. The last chapter in this was challenging, a great surprise, and an exercise in desperation to stay alive. That's all I'll say, and hopefully avoid spoiling it for others.

I loved it! Thanks for the great series, hope you keep up the good work.

Re:Random Opportunistic Mod Plugging of the Day! (1)

witte (681163) | about 7 years ago | (#20908933)

Just finished it yesterday night, this is a very polished single player mod.
Lots of surprises, clever and ironic puzzles, some unexpected twists, good timing and event triggering, and not easy.
I was very impressed by the dynamic layout of the levels with everything interconnecting organically as the player explores the environment. This takes gameplay a bit more off the rails as well. And the level of detail is beyond what you'd expect from SP mods.
(Minerva is more fun than a lot of HL2's original chapters imho)

Mr Foster & team, thanks for making this.

Ok, I'm done fawning.

gift dilemma (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20905127)

I now have copies of Half-Life 2 and Episode 1 to give away, but I don't have any friends who don't already own them!

Re:gift dilemma (0, Troll)

mackil (668039) | about 7 years ago | (#20905211)

After a post like that, I'm sure you'll have no shortage of friends.

Re:gift dilemma (1)

Indes (323481) | about 7 years ago | (#20906393)

And of course, with that, I'll be your friend :-)

One of the comments... (2, Insightful)

KGIII (973947) | about 7 years ago | (#20905175)

One of the comments on the site summed it up fairly well:

At the end of the day for the sheer amount of gameplay you will get out of the package $50 for all of this is an excellent deal. Valve could have sold everything for the $80 separate price and probably still would have sold copies of everything to most of the people who plan on buying it for $50 anyways. It certainly beats paying $70 for a 360 or PS3 game you finish in a few hours and then let collect dust.
That, to me, sums it up just nicely. It is a decent enough value at the price and the hours of play more than justify it. As a side note, I'd like to see someone pick up the Fallout series and create an online version.

Re:One of the comments... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20905593)

$50 is pretty much standard for PC games. Now, I don't *have* any of these, and I *want* all of them. I've been meaning to buy HL2 forever, but I'm not really interested in the "episode" crap, so the second one is a bonus. Portal looks amazing, and TF2 could be the multiplayer FPS-ish thing I haven't gotten a new one of in the past 5 years.

Re:One of the comments... (1)

KGIII (973947) | about 7 years ago | (#20905825)

It was enough to make me think about it. I may still though I haven't actually made up my mind or anything. Given my distance from the real world and my need to rely on narrowband connectivity at home I'm pretty much limited to LAN or single player modes but the gameplay that I've experienced on other people's systems really impressed me a great deal so investing a smaller sum to get that much would be viable for me.

Re:One of the comments... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20907607)

I actually pirated HL2, finished it, saw the box in a shop, felt guilty and bought it.

And it's a bloody good game, far superior to overhyped mediocrities like Bioshock, Doom3 or Halo3. The only FPS game that comes anywhere close is FEAR, and HL2 has more to it.

I don't really mind buying it again, I never bought EP1, so EP1+EP2+TF2+Portal is still good deal for $44.

Valve to its customers: (3, Funny)

Lord Bitman (95493) | about 7 years ago | (#20905297)

You have given us $70-$120 in the past. To show our appreciation: Here is a $5 discount on our already great one-and-a-half games for the price of three offer!

Re:Valve to its customers: (1)

Aladrin (926209) | about 7 years ago | (#20905437)

If all you want is Ep2, it's $30 through steam. If you only want Portal, it's $20.

Of course, if you want both, you're better off with the Orange Box. And you're also free to wait until the price comes down to something you feel is reasonable. Shouldn't be more than 6 months.

Re:Valve to its customers: (2, Funny)

Lord Bitman (95493) | about 7 years ago | (#20905497)

But I only have five months to live!
The make a wish foundation at first thought I was talking about dying when I asked for half-life, now they tell me to stop calling.

Re:Valve to its customers: (1)

matazar (1104563) | about 7 years ago | (#20905561)

Except, don't most PC games cost $45+ by themselfs when they are first released? So you are not only getting TF2, Portal and Ep2, but also HL2 and Ep1 for the same price. I think this is a pretty reasonable price. Portal will be short, but the mod and custom map potentials are huge.

Re:Valve to its customers: (1)

lucas teh geek (714343) | about 7 years ago | (#20905935)

im not disagreeing with you (I have no idea about it), but what makes you certain portal will be short?

Re:Valve to its customers: (1)

matazar (1104563) | about 7 years ago | (#20906319)

They've released details saying theres about 50 maps or so. The expected gameplay is 5-6 hours.
But it has great mod and community made map potential, so it will be worth it anyways.

Re:Valve to its customers: (1)

lucas teh geek (714343) | about 7 years ago | (#20907571)

ah, first I'd heard of it was when I watched the videos on steam when I was about to buy the orange box a few days ago. Looks fantastic and I'm so glad they're not trying to cobble multiplayer onto it. more devs need to learn that not every game needs multiplayer modes

Re:Valve to its customers: (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20906403)

These aren't full-length games! That's what people seem to be forgetting! Expect Episode 2 to be 6-8 hrs of playtime. $30. Aren't most $45 games supposed to give you around 20 hrs?

Re:Valve to its customers: (1)

matazar (1104563) | about 7 years ago | (#20906435)

Okay, well let's factor in how much play time Portal will be. 5-6 Hours for the normal game and how many hours do you think once people start making their own levels? When someone makes a multiplayer Mod?
TF2, I've already played it for about 30 Hours since it's release.

I don't know why everyone is so upset that Valve is putting 2 extra games in a bundle that's ALREADY worth more than the price it's selling for just because most people already own them. It doesn't matter, you are saving money anyways. STOP bitching or just buy the games seperatly and pay more.

Re:Valve to its customers: (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20905697)

dont forget they're letting us give away our other already purchased copies.

Team Fortress 2 FTW! (3, Insightful)

AdamTrace (255409) | about 7 years ago | (#20905363)

I pre-ordered the Orange Box just to get early access to Team Fortress 2, and so far I'm loving it.

It's very Counterstrike'ish, but with classes. What's cool, and surprisingly refreshing, is that the classes are actually VERY different, and lead to very different gameplay. The Spy is very sneaky, the Engineer is kind of a "pet" class where you spend most of your time fixing machines rather than in direct combat, the Healer is fun support, etc.

Good times.

Re:Team Fortress 2 FTW! (1)

Dutch Gun (899105) | about 7 years ago | (#20905587)

It's very Counterstrike'ish, but with classes.
As a long-time TF player, that comment just made me die a little inside.

Re:Team Fortress 2 FTW! (1)

matazar (1104563) | about 7 years ago | (#20905635)

It's not anything like counter-strike....

It's fairly different from TFC, but counter-strike? I'd like to know what version of counter-strike this guy is playing...

Re:Team Fortress 2 FTW! (1)

lymond01 (314120) | about 7 years ago | (#20905727)

I think he means it in a "I'm not familiar with the TF series in any engine, but if I'm going to compare the basic genre, it's like Counterstrike in that there are teams and you have guns."

From what I've heard TF2 keeps the craziness of the original TFs which, to me, is why they were so much fun. Rocket launcher for teh win!

Re:Team Fortress 2 FTW! (1)

matazar (1104563) | about 7 years ago | (#20905751)

They also did a great job on balancing classes. Removed grenades, so that the game isn't just a grenade fest. You actually have to work together to win.

Re:Team Fortress 2 FTW! (1)

Constantine XVI (880691) | about 7 years ago | (#20905787)

If you watch one of the trailers, the last 30 seconds or so is of the Soldier class rocket-jumping to ballet music

Re:Team Fortress 2 FTW! (1)

Splab (574204) | about 7 years ago | (#20909153)

The trailers are great, I'm going to buy the orange box and try it out. I usually only buy a game every other year or so (no I don't pirate, but most games don't have an appeal, I play CS (gun game mod) and DDO) but that trailer totally sold me for the TF2.

Re:Team Fortress 2 FTW! (1)

LazyBoy (128384) | about 7 years ago | (#20906521)

How does it compare to Tribes2?

Re:Team Fortress 2 FTW! (1)

Slamtilt (17405) | about 7 years ago | (#20909535)

It's a very different game. Much faster paced, no vehicles, small maps, and you don't spend time fiddling to find the perfect loadout. It is fantastic fun, though.

Re:Team Fortress 2 FTW! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20908393)

It's very Counterstrike'ish, but with classes.
No, no it's not anything like CS and you do TF2 a horrible disservice by implying so.

Yeh, Buy what you already have... (1)

fozzmeister (160968) | about 7 years ago | (#20905471)

Yeh, Buy what you already have... But that's ok, because you can give it away.

Re:Yeh, Buy what you already have... (2, Insightful)

matazar (1104563) | about 7 years ago | (#20905579)

These games were thrown in to the Orange Box. You were never paying for them in the first place. You are paying for TF2, Portal and Ep2.
It's more than reasonable price considering most new games cost that much by themselfs. Though if you are so upset over it, buy them all seperatly....

mod parent up (1)

derfy (172944) | about 7 years ago | (#20905879)

LOTS of people think you are buying HL2 and ep1 with the Orange Box. This is not the case.

Re:mod parent up (1)

Surye (580125) | about 7 years ago | (#20906199)

Really? How do you figure? Last I checked, you buy Orange Box, you get HL2 and Ep1. They aren't free outside of Orange Box, so it's not just included for convenience. That's like saying when you buy a burrito combo, and it comes with rice and beans, you aren't really buying rice and beans.

Re:mod parent up (1)

derfy (172944) | about 7 years ago | (#20906345)

Ok, Ok. What I meant was, you aren't paying for HL2 and ep1, they are included for free [to get people up to speed, sayth VALVe].

Re:mod parent up (1)

jakobX (132504) | about 7 years ago | (#20908855)

We understand WHAT you are saying its just that it doesnt make any sense. At least here on earth.

Re:mod parent up (2, Insightful)

matazar (1104563) | about 7 years ago | (#20906369)

"The Orange Box features three highly-awaited new games by Valve: Half-Life® 2: Episode Two, the second installment in the Half-Life 2 episodic trilogy; Team Fortress® 2, the sequel to the game that put class-based, multiplayer team warfare on the map; and Portal, the game that blends puzzles, first person action, and adventure gaming to produce an experience like no other. To bring gamers up to date with the Half-Life 2 universe, The Orange Box also includes Half-Life 2, the best-selling and highest-rated action game series of all time, and the episodic debut Half-Life® 2: Episode One." As I've stated on here several times. You are paying for portal, tf2 and ep2. They added hl2 and ep1 in as freebies. Even if you are "buying games you already own." What does it matter? You are getting a deal on the 3 games that retail for $80 seperatly. YOU ARE NOT PAYING ANYTHING EXTRA FOR HL2 & EP1.

Re:mod parent up (1)

matazar (1104563) | about 7 years ago | (#20906381)

Sorry for lack of formating, I picked html instead of plain text.

Re:mod parent up (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20906413)

By your logic, "Buy 1, Get 1 Free" coupons make no sense. It should just be "Get 1 Free!"
How about "Free CD with every purchase!"

Those things aren't free without you paying for something first. In either case it's better to pay $45 for 3 new games and 2 old ones that you already own then $80 for the 3 new games. What better deal can they offer you than $45 for 3 awsome games? (I say that without playing anything but TF2, because it's is awsom,e there's no way Portal won't be awsome and HL is always great.)

Re:Yeh, Buy what you already have... (1)

jakobX (132504) | about 7 years ago | (#20908929)

Not really. The original plan was to release the black box (EP2 with portal and TF2) and an orange box. The black box was supposed to cost the same as EP1, while the orange box was supposed to cost as much as it does.

I agree that the orange box is a very good value for those that havent bought HL2 and their first episode. On the other hand its a complete rip off to force those of us who already bought HL2 and EP1 to re buy them. Yes. Re buy them. They are not free. All of you who think they are free should go back to school. This might sound harsh but you people lack basic education.

Just because Valve posted silly prices for EP2 and portal on steam doesnt mean they are worth it. IF they said EP2 costs 3000$ separately would the orange box be an even better value? Of course not.

I like steam but... (0, Redundant)

sparkeyjames (264526) | about 7 years ago | (#20905659)

Forcing me to pay again for something that I have already paid for gets me PISSED.
No one that I personally know is in need of the "extra" software. Seeing as all my geek friends already
have the same set of games. It's still a rip off no matter how they try to candy coat it. All I really cared about
was episode 2.

Re:I like steam but... (1)

matazar (1104563) | about 7 years ago | (#20905693)

YOU ARE NOT FORCED TO BUY IT AGAIN.

These games were just included in the package. You are paying for TF2, Portal and Ep2. $45 is reasonable for these 3 games. Stop whining, you are not forced to buy games you already own again. If you think it's a better deal, buy all 3 games by themselfs.

Re:I like steam but... (1)

drb_chimaera (879110) | about 7 years ago | (#20908473)

Agreed - if I remember correctly the Orange Box works out to £5 more expensive than Ep1 was on release (£26 vs £20ish). Which was the only part of the package I wanted (I think it came with HL2DM as well, but I already had that)

For that I get Ep2, Portal and Team Fortress 2 - all three of them games I've been looking forward to for a long time Its cheapers to buy the Orange box than any *two* of the games seperately so whats the point?.

I don't care that it comes with HL2 and Ep1 (which I already have) - I can give them to a friend of mine that was going to buy them anyway last week, and he buys me a couple of beers in the pub after work on Friday by way of thanks and everyone's happy.

Re:I like steam but... (1)

elFarto the 2nd (709099) | about 7 years ago | (#20909189)

Seems to me that Valve have included HL2 and EP1 just so that they will be given to people who don't have them. They will play it, and might buy The Orange Box, to get EP2. Thus giving them another copy of HL2/EP1 who they give to someone else. Continuing the cycle.

Regards
elFarto

Re:I like steam but... (1, Informative)

lucas teh geek (714343) | about 7 years ago | (#20905919)

if all you want is episode 2, then buy just episode 2 by itself for $29.95. nobody is forcing you to buy the orange box

Re:I like steam but... (1)

Adradis (1160201) | about 7 years ago | (#20906195)

Think about it. Buying it separately is what? 80 dollars for three games? Buying it in the pack is 45-50 dollars. So, 30 dollar discount. And BONUS! Look, you get two more games that flesh out the background. If you already own them, oh well, it's a freebie regardless. If you don't? Congrats, two free games that you will likely enjoy. Your not paying for the same stuff a second time, since, factor in those two games into the cost individually (100ish dollars). Freebies, and you people whine. Bullshit. They offer you freebies and you people get pissed.

Re:I like steam but... (0)

Ensayia (912026) | about 7 years ago | (#20906797)

Excuse me, but WHAT are you talking about? Half Life 2 - Episode 2: $29.95 Portal : $19.95 Team Fortress 2 : $29.95 TOTAL : $79.85 Orange Box : $45.99 And they throw in HL2 and EP2 for those who don't have it as a BONUS How the HELL can you call this deal a ripoff?

Re:I like steam but... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20909437)

How the HELL can you call this deal a ripoff?

Dammit! Because INFORMATION WANTS TO BE FREE!

not really outraged..? (5, Insightful)

tehwebguy (860335) | about 7 years ago | (#20905799)

I have to say, I really think this is pretty cool.

Steam is the best gaming platform ever. It is truly awesome. It lets me lose my CDs as long as I have my password. It lets me fix the game files if something happens to them. It lets me keep track of my friends and play with them instantly.

I know DRM is inherently bad, I know. But it's almost like Valve took all those promises that the MAFIAA made (such as, "DRM will give us new our customers new ways of enjoying our products"), and making them real.

Re:not really outraged..? (1)

BlueCollarCamel (884092) | about 7 years ago | (#20906427)

It's not much fun when they ask for a scan/picture of the CD and key after the password is stolen*.

Granted, I had the CDs so I was in luck. I feel sorry for those who bought it online just to have their account stolen.

*This was during the early days of Steam, have they since altered their hijacked account recovery process?

Re:not really outraged..? (1)

matazar (1104563) | about 7 years ago | (#20906497)

I assume that if you purchased online, you'd just need to provide them with payment details.
Also, don't get your account stolen.....

Re:not really outraged..? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20909587)

have they since altered their hijacked account recovery process?
I'll need the password to your Slashdot account before I can answer that question, sir. (Hey, it already worked once on this guy...)

Re:not really outraged..? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20907813)

I dunno. I look at it this way.

There's the illegal route. Bittorrent and a decent darknet like relakks. You pay $5 per month for an all you can eat buffet. Most of the time you get every new game at around release date and with a good virus scanner you're home free. Probably relakks means you're untraceable. If not a dynamic IP assigned by an ISP is hard to trace, especially as my Wifi is shared between a shitload of people and it's hard to prove any individual crime. In any case there are horribly complex jurisdictional issues for anyone trying to prosecute you.

But all the money you spend goes to people who don't create the software you use. That really bothers me. I used to do this and buy the games I played more than a demo's worth from stores, but I travel around all the time now and it's hard to find English copies of them. Plus I don't have space to store them.

Or there's the legal route. Maybe you pay $50 a month for a game over steam or direct connect. So you pay more but the money actually goes to the people who make the game. You still need a virus scanner, since there's no guarantee the content is clean. Now Steam might well crash or Valve may go bankrupt. But since I paid for a license I'd feel ok morally with downloading a pirate copy. Legally it's a grey area, but I think I'd be happy standing up in court and holding up my proof of purchase. $50 bucks is not a large sum of money, maybe a decent night out. Or 1/40th the cost of a good gaming system.

Steam/Direct Connect works faster and is more reliable than a torrent over a darknet too.

Another nail in the first-sale doctrine coffin? (1)

Surye (580125) | about 7 years ago | (#20905889)

From their FAQ [steampowered.com] :

May I Buy, Sell or Trade gift subscriptions?
No. This violates the Steam Subscriber Agreement and may result in having your account disabled.
Last I checked, you purchased that software. Both of them. Why can you not sell one of the copies?

Re:Another nail in the first-sale doctrine coffin? (1)

paleo2002 (1079697) | about 7 years ago | (#20906589)

Not that I condone breaking EULA's or anything, but how are they going to know whether or not your friend gave you the gift of The Green Backs for your gift subscription from The Orange Box? And, why should Valve care? Anyone who is given HL2 and EP:1 are going to buy at least Episode 2 a few weeks later and probably Portal and TF2 - all ala carte.

Give Away Keys work as discount or w/ Xbox360? (1)

Wescotte (732385) | about 7 years ago | (#20905903)

I own HL2 and HL2 Ep1.. I want Portal, TF2 and HL2 Ep2 so chances are I'll just buy the Orange Box and pass on the give away keys. I was thinking I'd give them to my brother but he only really games with his xbox360. Can I transfer those keys to the xbox360 versions? Or at least get a discount on the Xbox360 version of the Orange box?

Eric

hmm (1)

brkello (642429) | about 7 years ago | (#20906057)

I am looking forward to the Orange Box...but that has to be one of the worst commercials they could have made. That voice is extremely grating and annoying...and they spend as much time in an orange screen as they do showing game clips. This goes to reinforce my theory that 90% of people who make commercials are abusing a substance.

Re:hmm (1)

paleo2002 (1079697) | about 7 years ago | (#20906663)

Too many video game commercials are basically aimed at people who already know about the game. And, since they only run video game commercials during shows that have been determined to be popular with the nerd demographic (SG-1, Family Guy, etc.) its basically like dropping hints to your parents that your birthday is coming up.

Valve: Hey guys, you know what happens on October 10th?

Core Demographic: Of course we do. You used to money from our pre-orders to pay for this ad in the first place.

Valve: Well, don't forget to buy the Orange Box!

Re:hmm (1)

wild_quinine (998562) | about 7 years ago | (#20906673)

I am looking forward to the Orange Box...but that has to be one of the worst commercials they could have made. That voice is extremely grating and annoying...
Well, I hate to piss on your bonfire, but if you don't like that voice you're SOL with about 1/3 of the orange box. Commence disappointment now.

Can we finally buy Half Life 2, for real? (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20906143)

Okay, Valve, hasn't HL2 been out long enough now, and haven't you made enough profit off of it, to allow us poor saps who simply wanted to actually BUY a copy in a store (instead of renting a copy through Steam) to do so?

My gaming machine has no Internet connection, and I am never going to "activate" software - you couldn't force me to do so at gunpoint.

I just want to buy a boxed game, install it on my home computer, and play it.

Hasn't enough time passed by now for you to make this simple functionality available to prospective "second-tier" purchasers like me?

Re:Can we finally buy Half Life 2, for real? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20906559)

No.

Connect your "gaming machine" to the internet for a bit so you can activate it. Steam has it's problems, but it's not all bad.

Re:Can we finally buy Half Life 2, for real? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20907377)

Nah, that's okay, not gonna do it. Steam sucks. DRM (activation) sucks.

I'll just ask again in 10 years ... or steal a hacked version somewhere... or read a book.

Thanks, Valve, for chasing away a customer.

Episode 2 (1)

pat_trick (218868) | about 7 years ago | (#20906791)

All I want to do is purchase Episode 2. Is this my only option?

Re:Episode 2 (1)

jakobX (132504) | about 7 years ago | (#20908759)

Yup...this is it.

Eventually you will be able to buy it separately over steam, but i guess its going to cost some ridiculous amount of money like 30$ + tax for what is basically a short episode. Valve originally planned to release the black box that included EP2, portal and TF2 for the same amount of money as EP1. They canceled this and blamed retailers. As if the retailers said we dont want to sell a game that people want to buy in our shops. Lying bastards.

If you already bought HL2 and EP1 in retail and wish to buy EP2 in retail then you are out of luck. Personally im just going to DL it online and be done with it. If they dont want to sell the second part of a game i already bought then im just going to use alternative means.

And before someone mentions steam. I dont want to use that overpriced shit. Every game is cheaper in retail and it includes a box. Im also not retarded and think that HL2 comes for free or that you get 3 new full games.

Free HL2 (1)

HairyNevus (992803) | about 7 years ago | (#20907081)

First one (1) to e-mail me can get a free Half-Life 2. You should also download Steam if you haven't already.

I'm on the edge of my seat! (2, Insightful)

DragonTHC (208439) | about 7 years ago | (#20907459)

I am bleeding excitement.
I thought to myself, Hmm, I can't wait for HL2:Episode 2 to come out. I loved HL2 and Episode 1.
Then it occurred to me that I've been waiting for TF2 for 9 years!
I didn't even know what portal was until I viewed the trailer only a month ago. I had assumed it was another of those dinky steam games that sells for $9.95.

I was astonished with portal. The closest reaction I can describe is seeing quake3 trick jumping for the first time, after realizing it was fake. Well, that and the first time I saw the physics gun in HL2. It was with the leaked alpha. It was so rough then, yet somehow the coolest thing I'd ever seen in a game.
Then TF2! The style just completely makes sense. It's like "No one lives forever" meets "The Incredibles". And fun to play.
I'm still looking forward to HL2:Episode 2. I will play it through. Then I will uninstall it.
It just makes financial sense to buy the orange box.

I pre-ordered it from gamestop. Then, while talking about it with a clanmate, I realized something. I don't want another cardboard box and game disc!

They're a liability. I need to keep track of them. With steam, I just need a password and email. Steam keeps track of my account, and games I've purchased. I can download them and install them any time I want. I can uninstall them and free up disk space and not worry about it.

There was a time when I had 60+ game boxes mounted on my wall as a badge of pride. Now, steam makes it easy to own games.

I'll take a bribe. (1)

atomic-penguin (100835) | about 7 years ago | (#20907631)

May I Buy, Sell or Trade gift subscriptions?
No. This violates the Steam Subscriber Agreement and may result in having your account disabled.


Just want to throw this out there. If someone wants to buy me a beer at our slashdot party... I might be influenced as to which friend gets a copy of HL2 and/or HL2ep1.
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