GOG.com closure a gag

Digital distribution outfit's shutdown hoax to end with site coming out of beta; Baldur's Gate: The Original Saga to be added to catalog.

Earlier this week, the Web site of online retailer Good Old Games apparently shut down. Visitors to the DRM-free PC game site were greeted by a note thanking them for their business and saying the site's slightly less than two-year tenure "was a great adventure for all of us and an unforgettable journey to the past, through the long and wonderful history of PC gaming."

Baldur's Gate: The Original Saga will be added to the GOG.com site when it goes back up.

In a video conference today, two GOG.com representatives dressed as monks revealed the shutdown to be a hoax when they announced the site was relaunching Friday at 1 p.m. GMT (5 a.m. Pacific). The conference, which logged nearly 1,000 concurrent visitors at various points and lagged heavily, touted the new site's recommendation engine and a GOGmix feature that allows users to make their own suggestion lists for others, with one monk suggesting a list of games featuring hot women.

Once the video conference was over, the hoax version of GOG.com was replaced with a countdown timer and a new message apologizing to "everyone who felt deceived or harmed in any way by us closing down GOG.com without any warning and without giving access to your games." To mark the relaunch, GOG.com is also adding an oft-requested title to its catalog with Baldur's Gate: The Original Saga. Combining the original game along with the Tales of the Sword Coast expansion, the bundle will sell for $10.

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Discussion

66 comments
Sameo
Sameo

I still want System Shock 2! :P

Azghouls
Azghouls

Man I panick when I read that. I had heaps of games in gog that I haven't downloaded yet. Whew!

Angel_Belial
Angel_Belial

I'm glad they didn't go out of business, but I doubted they would because they'd been sending a lot of emails recently about more games they're adding, specials, etc. If anything, it seems like they've been pretty successful.

Alkpaz
Alkpaz

"I am so excited for Baldur's Gate to come out! (I only have played it very briefly, I somehow missed it during my youth (along with Fallout, which I bought from GOG and played last year), I think I was playing Diablo II, and or Arcanum at the time of Baldur's Gate and so missed it). I am a bit annoyed by the whole "hoax" thing, but not too much. I think I'll be getting Baldur's Gate this winter break and not having a life." Be sure to buy lots of Wand of Monster Summoning to kill Sarovok. They nerfed the summoning spamming in BG2. :P

Humorguy_basic
Humorguy_basic

The new GOG.com has opened and is currently getting 20 times the visitors - so I would say the marketing worked big time! The new site could deal with 4 times the visitors and they are having to add more servers as we speak! If they had not posted cryptic messages there would have been no rumours and no web craziness about what was going on! I think they are marketing geniuses! I bet Gamespot would like to get 20 times the number of visitors!

Kel_Dar
Kel_Dar

I am so excited for Baldur's Gate to come out! (I only have played it very briefly, I somehow missed it during my youth (along with Fallout, which I bought from GOG and played last year), I think I was playing Diablo II, and or Arcanum at the time of Baldur's Gate and so missed it). I am a bit annoyed by the whole "hoax" thing, but not too much. I think I'll be getting Baldur's Gate this winter break and not having a life. :D

mrmikechau
mrmikechau

Yay Baldur's Gate. They should do a bundle with the complete set with Shadows of Amn and Throne of Bhall as well with the mod that allows a single install for all games.

stabby_mcgee
stabby_mcgee

That was pretty cheap for them to use a stupid stunt to get attention. If they really want more people to know about the site then why not have a weekly special where when a customer buys a game, they get a free copy to give to a friend?

RadicalToenail
RadicalToenail

Nevermind...

It's down. Guess they weren't expecting so many people.

RadicalToenail
RadicalToenail

Don't care what they did. 20 minutes and I'm buying Baldur's Gate.

Halloll
Halloll

dirty marketing gag that cost nothing, what a bright future for gog.com

samedizombie
samedizombie

At first I was shocked but now I have to admit it was a pretty cool way of doing things. At least they're now making us wait a long time. However with their outrageous accents I just want then to scream: "Your mother was a hamster and your father smelt of elderberries!"

Jedilink109
Jedilink109

@Gelugon_baat *facepalm.jpg* NO. You use Encyclopedia Dramatica, NOT Know Your Meme. SRSLY dude?

Jedilink109
Jedilink109

@EVSchong1 No they didn't have that game. But one of the more popular sections was a request page where you could vote on personal faves and if no one posted a game you'd like to see then you can post it and hope people vote for it. They basically try and get the games everyone votes for the most. They've gotten quite a few games the fans asked for...maybe if you asked enough and made enough noise on the forums about it they'll get it. Haha. Either way, it's a great site. Check it out when it goes up again today!

reddog00
reddog00

I am a staunch supporter of GOG.com and was devastated to see them apparently call it quits. But the whole welcoming page still saying BETA in the top corner was a sigh or hope to me that this was a great beginning not an ending. The stunt that some people might not agree with was a little harsh but there has been more PR in 4 days than they will receive as long as their doors stay open. To me that shows above average intelligence and the willingnest to work outside the box. Kudos to the GoG Team. I cannot tell you how happy I am for your success and I am sure to your future success also. PC gamers not only get DRM-free classics but the bells and whistles come with that purchase too. AWESOME...just AWESOME!!! The Gaming Gods have blessed us all with GoG.com do not let a little PR joke ruin the best thing to ever happen to us GOOD OLD GAMERS! Cherish it!

HappyBB
HappyBB

I used to sympathize GOG.com, but now I feel I am deceived! Man, you better turn out right or you'll lose me!

EVSchong1
EVSchong1

Does anyone know if they have the original Carmageddon?

RadicalToenail
RadicalToenail

@raahsnavj The thing with Gog is that it's not as simple as just tossing a game with DOSbox. They patch games themselves and make them workable when they might not otherwise work or get rid of bugs or just make a game far more compatible with modern PCs in general.

UnknownPerson55
UnknownPerson55

add all of the baulders gate games and ill like this site more than i now do.

BloodMist
BloodMist

Whew, thank the heavens.This service is one of the best things to happen in the last decade for gamers, I've gotten to play so many games I missed when they first came out, and always regretted not being able to play, until now!!Support this service, buy a couple games from them, at least, if you can stop at a couple.

digitalheadbutt
digitalheadbutt

This site is awesoem I can't wait until they the get teh XWing and Tiefighter series. It seems that it would only be a matter of time. If I can't have a new space sim I will gladly re-purchase all my old ones from GoG.

Humorguy_basic
Humorguy_basic

Must admit was surprised they had nearly 300 titles and had over 2 million downloads! That's a million downloads a year for each of the two years they have been around! And, with an average of $7.50 per sale that's $7.5 million per year income, give or take! Given their service is practically automatic with just some front end work, i would have thought they have at least a 50% profit margin! However they do need UK or U,S people in management to understand how various markets around the world would have reacted to this 'stunt'! Got to be fair though. Given that any publicity is good publicity, this has turned out to be very successful, with tons of free advertising like this article! I feel it only fair in a way they get more business as Steam get tons of free coverage partly because they are owned by Valve and partly because they are American! Europe generally gets treated second class by the predominantly U.S. gaming sites like this one.

LordDeArnise
LordDeArnise

I knew they would eventually add some of my favorite Bioware Infinity Engine games to their library. BG is my all-time favorite RPG.

filmboy85
filmboy85

Also, please add BG2 and Planescape and Icewind Dale 1 & 2... in other words just add all of the Infinity games please...

Alkpaz
Alkpaz

I must agree with Suikogaiden. I was about to get a lawyer! I was afraid of loosing all that money I spent. Now, I will be a bit more cautious about buying from them. If anything this makes people like myself a bit "less confident".

SciFiCat
SciFiCat

SUNOBA****! And it is not even April!

feliscele
feliscele

God, I REALLY need to start buying stuff from there.

lonewolf1044
lonewolf1044

Glad it was a joke, I wasn't worried about my games being I have backups of the setup files and I do have most of the CDs they have anyway. I buy them over because I do not have the time to set DOSBOX up. It was in taanyway and what a way to come out of Beta.

pineapplearmy
pineapplearmy

This was a great PR stunt. I'd never heard of GOG.com, but now I have!

raahsnavj
raahsnavj

I don't like gog.com much anyhow. They take an old game and make an install for DOSbox for you... nothing a computer user can't already do without paying them money.

alabama2561990
alabama2561990

thank god....i went to the site last night to actually get a game..they usually have good old school games that are pretty cheap. once i read the message i was like NOOOOOO!. Now it sounds like the sites gonna get better...i just hope they didnt think that was funny cuz it wasnt

FallenOneX
FallenOneX

I don't see what the big deal is. Even in the prank email they sent out, it stated that the people would still get all of the games they ordered/paid for. I thought that was weird, but pretty cool that they would still find a way to honor that promise. If you have a problem with their sense of humor, so be it. I'm willing to bet that half of the people here crying foul don't even have an account with them.

Stiler
Stiler

[quote]Am I the only one who doesn't get it? They pretend to be closing down... But they didn't. Instead they officially open... I don't see how this would be beneficial in any way. If anything, they'd lose customers who heard they were closing down & didn't get the memo that they were faking it... I don't even think this qualifies as a news story... It's stupidity.[/quote] It's called publicity. This got gog coverage on most major gamesites, forums, word of mouth, etc. In the end it will get them more customers as a lot more people now know of the site.

hobotech64
hobotech64

If they pulled this kind of crap with Live, you guys wouldn't be laughing.

Raephius
Raephius

Am I the only one who doesn't get it? They pretend to be closing down... But they didn't. Instead they officially open... I don't see how this would be beneficial in any way. If anything, they'd lose customers who heard they were closing down & didn't get the memo that they were faking it... I don't even think this qualifies as a news story... It's stupidity.

RyuRanVII
RyuRanVII

I already have two versions of each Baldur's Gate and expansion packs. I'll buy another one just because it's cheap and I don't have a digital copy yet.

taxonomic
taxonomic

NeoGAF leaked this joke a couple hours after GOG posted that they were closing. Not a shock. More of a shock that a NeoGAF forum user was right for a change than anything else, really. As for BG1, if someone doesn't have BG1 already they aren't much of a PC Gamer to be honest.

DS_fan_atic
DS_fan_atic

Baldur's Gate, to this day, is my favourite game (all platforms included) of all time

DevilBorg
DevilBorg

The original Baldur's Gate?! Please arrive on Steam as well!

ryuz4kee
ryuz4kee

Wow, I cant believe how uptight a lot of you people are acting...go cry about it babies.

Megasus_
Megasus_

The point of pranking someone is to get entertainment at their expense. This is okay to do to good friends or total strangers, but it's a bit extreme to prank your own customers and make them feel like crap for a few days.

chkdsk1991
chkdsk1991

[This message was deleted at the request of a moderator or administrator]

mrzero1982pt2
mrzero1982pt2

i think its pretty funny. so good job punking the gamers!!!!

Zero5000X
Zero5000X

I hope Baldur's Gate and Planescape Torment come to Steam as well.

spudster007
spudster007

I felt betrayed when they did this. I bought a game the day before they changed their homepage to a message saying that GOG was gone. I will probably continue to stay on the site, but still, you treated your users like crap...

RadicalToenail
RadicalToenail

Also, they obviously have a strange sense of humor. I for one was amused and intrigued from the beginning.

RadicalToenail
RadicalToenail

They never said that it was closing. Just that it couldn't continue as it was, but the idea would not die. Anyone who didn't get this right at the start just can't read in-between the lines.

'sides, anyone who might be upset at them will forgive them because Baldur's Gate is going to be on it. I mean, c'mon. Who can stay mad at them now? :P

M3tr4nk0
M3tr4nk0

This might've been annoying, but it sure worked to draw attention to them.