An increasing number of PC gamers in Bangladesh have shied away from the decade-old norm of buying pirated DVDs from their local shopping mall or sailing the high seas themselves and are now buying original games for full retail price.
The reasoning behind that, aside from the obvious moral ones, is that video games have immense online interactions now — from updates, patches and DLC’s to the doom and gloom of MTX’s — and players are also drawn towards playing online, something which is cumbersome to say the least with pirate games, as couch co-op slowly fades.
Developers have also spurred on that trend with DRMs, with mixed results.
As much as one can build up their library during Steam sales, the prohibiting factor for every gaming enthusiast in Bangladesh has always been the pricing.
Justifying the $60 purchase of a single game can prove a tough ask, especially to your girlfriend who will ask why you didn’t take her to the Westin for a buffet dinner using a certain telecom company’s ‘buy one get one free’ offer.
Just kidding, PC gamers don’t have girlfriends.
But more to the point, that load on your wallet is definitely going to get a lot lighter after Valve’s latest changes. The software giant announced that they would not only be adding more payment methods, but that they would be starting a ‘South Asian Pricing Region’, meaning the prices of games South Asia will be lowered.
As a result, PC gamers in Bangladesh can expect to see hugely reduced prices for some upcoming titles, while they can grab Middle Earth: Shadow of War for just $30 compared to the $60 that North Americans will have to pay for the AAA experience. Other $60 AAA games include Call of Duty WWII, which currently costs $32, and Assassin’s Creed Origins, for $44.
All over the store games have been reduced in price. Cuphead is retailing for $8.19, less than the $9.99 its soundtrack costs!
That load on your wallet is definitely going to get a lot lighter after Valve’s latest changes, which aims to make games cheaper for countries like Bangladesh.
The changes have not been made without their troubles however. The process has led to gifting harder due to pricing differences across countries. If you have a cousin living in Canada or the US and they want some of the sweet deals, it’s not going to happen. Sure they can Western Union the money to your mom, but Steam has restricted the gifting of games to players in other regions where the prices are different.
Great, so now you know that the games in Bangladesh are cheaper, but how do you go about acquiring them without an international credit card? While Valve seriously needs to work on accepting BKash directly, you can have a gander around Facebook.
The process is akin to recharging your phone in the pre-flexi days, with a scratch-off card, and the price isn’t that bad either.
While a $2 card currently costs Tk 250, an 82.5% mark-up, that difference is just 23 taka when you buy a $10 card for Tk 850. Using my A level degree in math, I have calculated that buying Call of Duty WWII ($32) would cost you Tk 2,800 – a bit more than you’d need to pay officially, but a far cry from the official retail price of $60.