PC gamers get bill of rights

Two developers propose a PC gamer's bill of rights.

The Bill of Rights, original flavor. The National Archives

Edge Online had an interesting post Thursday in which it reported that PC game developers Gas Powered Games and Stardock have collaborated on a PC Gamers' Bill of Rights. The full 10-point list below:

  1. Gamers shall have the right to return games that don't work with their computers for a full refund.
  2. Gamers shall have the right to demand that games be released in a finished state.
  3. Gamers shall have the right to expect meaningful updates after a game's release.
  4. Gamers shall have the right to demand that download managers and updaters not force themselves to run or be forced to load in order to play a game.
  5. Gamers shall have the right to expect that the minimum requirements for a game will mean that the game will adequately play on that computer.
  6. Gamers shall have the right to expect that games won't install hidden drivers or other potentially harmful software without their express consent.
  7. Gamers shall have the right to re-download the latest versions of the games they own at any time.
  8. Gamers shall have the right to not be treated as potential criminals by developers or publishers.
  9. Gamers shall have the right to demand that a single-player game not force them to be connected to the Internet every time they wish to play.
  10. Gamers shall have the right that games which are installed to the hard drive shall not require a CD/DVD to remain in the drive to play.

All of these ideas sound great, but we're not sure how realistic that first one is. How would you return a downloaded game for a full refund?

A line in the Edge post states "our goal, if we get enough industry support on this, is to create a consortium that upholds the following basic standards for PC games." We cringe at the idea of yet another PC game-focused industry group on top of the PC Gaming Alliance. It's also unlikely that the industry at large would adopt this list in its current state, but we give all involved credit for making the attempt. Let's hope that these ideas at least give PC game developers and publishers something to think about.

About the author

Rich Brown is an executive editor for CNET Reviews. He has worked as a technology journalist since 1994.


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