A Paladin’s Musing: Buy The Witcher 3 on GOG or Steam?


Let’s try my hand at mobile blogging. What could possibly go wrong with writing a post entirely on a smartphone?

So. I’ve reviewed The Witcher 2. I’m currently working on the first Witcher review which will be coming soon. But I don’t want to end it there, I want to tackle the third in the series. I want to see if it’s actually good or not. The only question that remains is, what platform do I buy it on? GOG or Steam?

Since I started reviewing games, I decided I wanted to only tackle modern games. I’ve talked about this at some length before but the cutoff year is 2007. Anything that came out before that year is not only not reviewed by me but I also prefer to buy it on GOG. Games older than 2007 typically have some inane DRM or problems working on modern systems.  With GOG, well, that’s not an issue. Plus, all of the goodies they include are nice.

But lately, I’ve been considering buying modern titles on the service. And with Witcher 3, well, if it’s good I’d prefer it to be DRM-free. Buying modern games on GOG in the past was more of a hassle and typically a lot of them were released on the service months or years after the Steam edition. That’s not been the case lately. A lot of indie developers have been cross-publishing to both stores on the same day. Trine 3, Volume, Pillars of Eternity, Big Pharma, OlliOlli2 and so on. Additionally, GOG Galaxy is a very competent client even with it being in BETA right now. So, there’s a lot of upsides to going more with GOG.

I’ve long held the stance of being as DRM-free as possible. Steam remains the only DRM that I willingly tolerate and even it gives me concern from time to time. After all, it’s one point of access that, if it should fail, would cost me access to the 300+ games I own on the service. That’s not a comforting thought.

The main downsides to buying it on GOG are that I can’t use Steam services and I can’t publish a Steam review. Traffic from Steam reviews isn’t insignificant. So there’s definitely a cost. While GOG does have their own review system, its far less flexible, visible or editable compared to Steam reviews. I have short reviews posted for Dust: An Elysian Tail and The Witcher 2 on GOG but I can’t find them. I know, it’s kind of crazy but they aren’t tied to a public profile just yet. So it’s not particularly helpful at the moment. Though then again, Steam reviews as a system is a mess. Many of my reviews get buried because someone(s) strongly disagreed with my opinions and the only “helpful” reviews are joke or one sentence blurbs that don’t inform anyone of anything. So, I can live without that access. But every little bit helps and GOG won’t likely get me much traffic anytime soon.

It’s a tricky choice. Obviously, the easiest solution is to just buy the Witcher 3 on both platforms and have the best of both worlds. But I don’t have $120+ just lying around. And doing that for more than just The Witcher would be horrendously expensive with little benefit.

I think ultimately I will end up buying modern titles on GOG in the future as I prefer their business model. It’s just, should I start now? I’m not sure.

Thoughts? I’m curious to hear what other thinks.

As always, thanks for reading.


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