Survival sandbox Rust has refunded $4.38M to players so far

    
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Have you ever wondered how many copies of any particular game players return for refunds on Steam? In the case of the popular survival sandbox Rust, we now know the answer — and it may astonish you.

The game’s developer revealed this week that nearly 330,000 copies of the game were submitted for refunds through Steam, totaling over $4.38 million handed back to players. Of those, the majority reason for refund requests was that Rust was “not fun.”

These numbers don’t mean that Rust is a failure; the game has sold over 5.5 million copies to date, and the lead developer doesn’t begrudge those who aren’t satisfied.

“I put that down to people using the refund system as a demo,” Garry Newman said to PCGamesN. “I think in the long run, people knowing the refund system is there probably gained us more sales than it lost us.”

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Cypher

Wait… isn’t the refund system line 2 hours? Or something silly like that… how can you judge an mmm after only a few hrs?

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Sray

With the exception of a couple games that took gigantic, out-of-nowhere leaps in the difficulty curve about five or six hours in, I’ve always known whether or not I was going to enjoy a game within 45 minutes or less. By the time you’ve played a game for two hours, you know whether or not you’re enjoying yourself enough to continue on or to get your money back.

Do I wish that Valve’s refund period was longer? Yes, of course: I think that somewhere in the range of four to six hours would be ideal. But if I’m not enjoying a game within the first two hours, I’m not going to stick out longer in hopes that it eventually gets better; and I don’t believe that most other people will either.

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Schmidt.Capela

Reminds me of Dragon Quest VII, where you don’t even engage in combat during the first two hours, and some of the most important progression mechanics aren’t introduced in the first twenty hours.

quark1020
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quark1020

I’d call that bad design. Outside of some exposition, the game shouldn’t change that drastically between early and late game. Sure, you’ll have more power and more options for combat, but it shouldn’t go from a turn base rpg to a real time strategy game when you hit max level.

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agemyth 😩

And on the other hand there are games short enough or simple enough to beat or fully have your fill of by two hours. In general, 2 hours is reasonable if you want to give a game a try or if it has common PC game issues and will not run satisfactorily on your machine.

The first two hours in Rust are likely rough these days, so I think that refund rate is pretty good.

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Spencer Archer

Some people don’t use the refund to just refund not fun games. I had to refund For Honor, because I couldn’t get the peer to peer system to work blocking me from multiplayer.

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kgptzac

Teach me your Stoic ways, for playing a game for 2 hours and can’t form an opinion for the experience to be either fun or not fun.

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Jeff

And this is why venture capitalist will not touch most MMO projects.

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quark1020

Maybe its for the best?

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Fervor Bliss

Seems fine, people took the time to download and play the game. Not every game is for everybody.

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enamel

I wish I was a part of that number, but alas I played longer than 2 hours. Easily my least favorite survival game.

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Fisty

The game is fun. Getting killed over and over, losing bases and all that is not fun for most people. It’s not all that much fun to me, I don’t devote enough time to it. If they wanted to earn those 330,000 copies and others who won’t buy due to the toxicity, they could try to cater to the snowflake crowd.

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agemyth 😩

I am by online gaming definitions part of the “snowflake” crowd, yet Rust and DayZ are my two favorite survival games. Let’s not go jumping to conclusions on those 330,000 potential players and label them one thing or another.

The first two hours of Rust can be dramatically different for every player. I bet a lot of people are just aimlessly hitting trees with rocks and rocks with rocks a lot of that time. :P

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Melissa McDonald

if people want a refund within 2 hours? That speaks loudly. I both applaud the company for honouring them, and also, say a little prayer for their finances. That’s a tough pill to swallow for anyone.

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primal

Hardly, they wouldn’t even notice the money anyway because I think valve pay developers at the end of month so if someone refunds it gets taken out of that pot

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Tobasco da Gama

Just for perspective, that’s 6% of their sales. No idea if that’s higher or lower than average for similar games in the genre.

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Schmidt.Capela

It was 9.4% a year ago, so the current 6% refund number is a marked improvement.

The current number seems to be within what is considered normal for indie devs, though closer to its high end, according to what little data I could find.

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Tobasco da Gama

Nice, thanks for the info.

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wandris

Cheap bastards. I can see the need for refunds, but seems like an abuse, especially in this particular case. Rust is an EA game and has not been failing to deliver over the past several years. It’s like buying a suit, using it for a few months, then returning it becasue, “I don’t like it”.

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Greaterdivinity

Except these are all authorized refunds within the 2 hours trial period on Steam, and it represents single digit %’s of his total sales. Hell, he even acknowledges that it’s likely overall netted more sales than refunds.

Refunds are good, yo.

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deekay_plus

i really feel the singular case scenario where refunds are abused is review bombing as seen in the recent gtao reddit lynch mob shit.

otherwise the refund system is a good confidence builder for consumers to give games a shot they wouldn’t otherwise.

tho i do have misgivings about the limitations not being within the law and valve fighting that with their high priced legal teams while unironicaly saying a cs dept isn’t in their culture.

still, could be worse. could be GMG who actively disregard the law completely and talk shit to people who excercise their legal rights in this area.

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Greaterdivinity

But those are reviews, not refunds. Two totally separate things, and quickly looking at many of those reviews that were trashing the game, most of those folks aren’t eligible for a refund.

The refund policy is pretty clear, you have 2 hours after starting a game to refund it. That’s enough time to figure out if there are actual major issues that leave it unplayable for you, if the game is completely different than you thought, or there are other major problems with the game.

deekay_plus
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deekay_plus

people buy the game to review and refund it immidiately after. that’s what i’m referring to.

it’s pretty clearly being abused the behjest of interested groups as i mentioned with the gta5 thing amongst others.

otherwise like i said the refund thing is good. tho the limitations need to be brought in line with the law imo.

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primal

I’m not 100%sure but i think you need to own the game otherwise the review doesn’t get counted and keep owning it. If you refund it then it doesn’t get counted in the rating of the game

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deekay_plus

nope all you need to do is buy it then review. then you can refund it and review stays up.

i was going through the gta5 reviews for an hour or two yday and it amazed me the bullshit lynch mob shit.

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primal

Ah right, people are just angry about the mods. I should be more angry because I can’t even play because the rockets launcher won’t launch the game. At least last time I tried a month ago

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deekay_plus

occasionaly the rockstar auth gate goes down. sometimes the steam auth gate goes down.

can be really annoying when either happens. ><

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primal

nah it tries to do a 54MB update and constantly crashes, other times its said bad installation of social club so it just will not launch

deekay_plus
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deekay_plus

that’s definitely ma weird one. installing through steam? maybe it’s fucking up the .net dependencies?

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primal

no it was off rockstars site. not gone through steam. dunno whats wrong with it

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deekay_plus

i’d suggest looking into .net dependencies. or any missing dll’s you may need. common issues with game installations not work. which steam usually goes a bit over board on.

but yeah try those avenues.

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primal

reinstalling it from rockstars website. the download thing didnt work last time but its working now. 70GB 55minutes

deekay_plus
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deekay_plus

just corrupt download or what?

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primal

dunno i reinstalled it from disc last time maybe it doesnt like the vanilla version. ill see if it works when its finished downloading

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primal

works now. dumb thing. 1440p pretty much max setting. biggest thing of all though no screen tear with ma gsync monitor. thats the best thing over all the resolution and graphics, no screen tear

deekay_plus
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deekay_plus

I honestly haven’t seen screen tear on nvidia in over a decade. This on my shifty 1080p screens

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Schmidt.Capela

I haven’t had any issues with Steam auth servers for the last decade or so, if I can’t connect to them Steam just goes into offline mode while allowing me to keep playing all my games.

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deekay_plus

It’s mostly fine for sp games nowadays but onlinegames there can be interruptions sometimes

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Necromonger

Lovely to see one can return turds back to the toilet.

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quark1020

I’d hesitate calling Rust a turd, but I agree with the sentiment. Getting refunds for products you don’t like is always a good thing.