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Orange Box In Stores Wednesday 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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Orange Box In Stores Wednesday

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  • WTF? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 08, 2007 @07:12PM (#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.

  • Cohesive? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by SnoopJeDi ( 859765 ) <snoopjedi@GINSBERGgmail.com minus poet> on Monday October 08, 2007 @07:17PM (#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.
  • by gumpish ( 682245 ) on Monday October 08, 2007 @07:23PM (#20905137) Journal

    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.
  • by KGIII ( 973947 ) <uninvolved@outlook.com> on Monday October 08, 2007 @07:27PM (#20905175) Journal
    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.
  • by Chris Burke ( 6130 ) on Monday October 08, 2007 @07:35PM (#20905259) Homepage
    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
  • by AdamTrace ( 255409 ) on Monday October 08, 2007 @07:47PM (#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.
  • by matazar ( 1104563 ) on Monday October 08, 2007 @08:12PM (#20905579) Homepage
    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....
  • by matazar ( 1104563 ) on Monday October 08, 2007 @08:15PM (#20905613) Homepage
    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.
  • by tehwebguy ( 860335 ) on Monday October 08, 2007 @08:33PM (#20905799) Homepage
    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:mod parent up (Score:2, Insightful)

    by matazar ( 1104563 ) on Monday October 08, 2007 @09:50PM (#20906369) Homepage
    "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.
  • 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.
  • by rhennigan ( 833589 ) on Tuesday October 09, 2007 @10:20AM (#20911097)
    I am in total agreement. Initially I hated the idea of Steam and wouldn't touch it for some time, but I eventually caved because I wanted to play HL2. Since then I order my games on Steam if they are available because I'm one of those people that always loses CDs and CD keys. The ability to keep track of your friends in game is quite a nice feature. One click lets you jump into their game, on their server. Other games, you would have to contact them via other means, and communicate an ip address, etc. Sure, it's DRM, but it works for us too, very much unlike the music industry.

If it's not in the computer, it doesn't exist.