Earlier this week, G2A hit a bit of a snafu, again, when a variety of new forms of backlash came out against the key reseller. For one thing, their proposed key blocking tool had failed to gain any real traction, forcing them to extend the deadline for support submissions. Then another independent developer came forward with claims of malfeasance on the part of G2A, this time demanding more than $300,000 be repaid.
These claims followed a lengthy series of accusations and counter-claims surrounding G2A that culminated in a a series of rolling controversies online. First, indie developers spoke out against the sale of their games on the site, calling it shady, even going so far as to say user should pirate their games rather than buy them from G2A. The controversial company responded in a few different ways, chief among them being to announce a planned key blocker tool that would allow developers to manually prevent their keys from being sold on the service. Another pushback against the torrent of angry gamers saw G2A unleash multiple long screeds on their blog, to growing discontent, one of which promised that G2A would pay back any money lost from indie developers due to chargebacks ten-fold.
And it’s that latter claim which is the subject of today’s post.
One independent developer, Charlie Cleveland, took to Twitter to claim that hundreds of instances of his game being sold on G2A without his consent had lead to a mountain of chargebacks. As such, he attempted to call out G2A, claiming he was owed $300,000, G2A disagrees.
And based on claims from G2A about the history of their business, it looks like Cleveland might be mistaken.
“Selling keys on a marketplace which was yet to come into existence seems unreasonable at best,” G2A wrote on its blog. “Launched in 2014, G2A Marketplace was celebrating its 5th birthday this year. The said keys were allegedly stolen and sold before March 8, 2013 – 6 years ago. Charlie wrote: ‘We paid $30,000 to deal with credit card chargebacks because of G2A.’ That’s just slander, and we expect him [Cleveland] to at least edit his posts, if not straight up apologize.”
However, if Charlie Cleveland would like us to hire a professional auditing company to check if the keys from before 2014 appeared on a non-existing marketplace, we encourage him to contact the G2A Direct team, as per the initial offer.”
So what’s the actual timeline here? It’s hard to say really, as it was claimed on the blog that G2A didn’t exist in 2013. However, a PR Newswire report on the company’s history, setting its founding date in 2010. Additionally, even the go2arena link redirects to G2A’s website. So while there is some contradiction here, it would appear as though G2A had the upper hand
And according to Cleveland himself, it appears that the company isn’t to blame after all.
“It does appear that G2A is right,” Cleveland told Kotaku earlier today. “They weren’t the source of these original $30k keys. It doesn’t LOOK like they were selling gray-market keys at the time we had all those chargebacks. But they’ve been doing it ever since.”
So while the whole thing does appear to be cooling down a bit for now, it seems like it’s only a matter of time before something else is found to complain about with this whole mess. And frankly, the condescending manner of G2A’s response is hard to ignore. It feels like gloating when read a certain way, but maybe that’s just me.