View Full Version : How are buying CDkeys so cheap?

30-08-2012, 10:50 PM
So I bought guild wars 2 CD key for $31USD which is about $41 Nz dollars. (cheapest boxed version in Nz is about $69)
They sell retail boxed veresion/gw2 site in USA for $59USD as like other new releases.

I just wanna know how is it possible I can buy it for $31 USD?

Does buying in
mass bulk
buying in cheaper countries
exchange rates
no retail staff etc costs
no boxes shipping packaging, etc

Really can bring the cost down to $31 USD?

31-08-2012, 12:01 AM
Good question? I asked likewise when I bought Star Wars : The Old Republic, I got the Digital Deluxe edition for quite a bit cheaper than it was being offered locally and from the official website. Still curious to know why, so I'll watch this with great interest!

31-08-2012, 06:54 AM
digital distribution is cheaper than physical, but also some digital distributors like to price gouge.
The call of duty series on steam, as well as skyrim are good examples.
I bought skyrim when it was 99 USD on steam over here, but I bought it from greenman gaming for 68 NZD. Turns out the NZ price was benig pushed up by 30 USD simply based on our geographic location.

I was looking at picking up guild wars 2 though, where did you get yours from and did it work?

31-08-2012, 07:10 AM
Yeah, it's much like printer cartridges and DVDs get their prices increased for certain locations around the world.

If you're in a more affluent, typically European region, then your price gets jacked up in order to gouge as much from the local market as possible.

If you're in Asia or Eastern Europe (Russia) the price is a lot softer.

One of the first things Steam does is pin down your location, and the location that your credit card is registered in. From then the prices you see will be jacked up to maximise their profits, rather than left at a level acceptable to still run at a profit and provide value.

HP sell their printer cartridges with 3 (maybe more) different region codes in the product code, with 3 different prices. If you can source your matching cartridge from these other regions (under an unfamiliar product code) you'll save heaps. $50 for a tank of black ink is such a terrible ripoff.

31-08-2012, 07:12 AM
If you brought your key from a site like g2play it is cheaper because the keys are usually just scans of retail keys purchased in Russia or 3rd world countries where the retail price on the games is incredibly low.

31-08-2012, 09:47 AM
The retail costs, rent yeah .. but don't retail stores have that as a fixed cost? Many of them are there not to only just to sell software. Also with the big chains, they can pressure them into giving them priviledged big discounts. But going with some of of the non-software stuff in stores, it's not unheard of that 40-50% discounts at times are given. So the retail markups may be subtantial, as well as distributor markups. A lot if the local market I think with the responsiveness of the market with price changes and how much demand there is. Like I buy still use film cameras right, slide films are $40NZ a roll, I import from the USA at $8US a roll, postal is $10US per batch. Hmmm..

31-08-2012, 10:23 AM
geographic location.

There's plenty of places you can buy the key - or even entire boxed version cheaper overseas.

31-08-2012, 11:01 AM
I imagine more of the profit goes to the game company with digital distribution also, no manufacturing, packaging, shipping costs, no wholesale distributor markup, no retail markup, just the cost of maintaining a website and server for digital distribution and/or whatever cut services like steam take.

Still the costs aren't big either way. If it was legal I could duplicate my windows CD and sell it at $5 a pop and make a profit, once the original costs of creating software have been recovered the rest is almost all profit.

31-08-2012, 11:20 AM
I got Skyrim through Steam for $38-47 NZ.

31-08-2012, 12:51 PM
Less rent, wages, packaging yep. But also less stuff to do with warehouses, having to implement stock control and employ people to manage that, maybe more issues with credit control as via the traditional way, they have trade accounts. GST/custom fees. Less in unsold inventory.

You still get the physical thing with real books but compare Whitcoulls retail to say Amazon or Book Depository. The latter even offers free intl freight.

A sig part if the market thing and what that place is like there. You have uni textbooks right. The publishers are international. In NZ, they may go for $100-150 each. You can get textbooks from say Bangkok, from the same publisher in Thai language of course for maybe $40. Or even Singapore, which arguably has a higher stds of living, and you did get $$ places but you can still get a cheap meal there that rivals NZ.

01-09-2012, 05:31 PM
I got Skyrim through Steam for $38-47 NZ.

Thats pretty cheap...

01-09-2012, 09:32 PM
Out of interest where did you find guild wars 2 for $31US?

04-09-2012, 12:06 PM
I'm also interested to know, since I'm considering getting GW2.

04-09-2012, 05:29 PM
$59US is the cheapest I've found.