Cyberpunk 2077, the latest opus from Witcher developer CD Projekt Red, is a gritty open-world shooter set in the futuristic Night City, a megacity in the Free State of California. This is an area controlled by corporate entities contending for dominance and assailed by rampant gang wars. The city is contingent on robotics for everyday aspects like waste collection, maintenance, and public transportation. The Internet is managed by corporations and the army. You play as a mercenary equipped with cybernetic enhancements that let you outfit your character with a wide array of skills.
The game draws inspiration from several cyberpunk works, including the movie Blade Runner (1982), Japanese manga/anime series Ghost in the Shell, and video games System Shock (1994) and Deus Ex (2000). It has a motorbike from the Akira manga/anime film (1988). It will even feature Keanu Reeves of The Matrix (1999) in a major role.
Cyberpunk 2077 was first announced way back in May 2012. It’s set to launch on April 16, 2020, for PS4, Xbox One, and PC. Finally they stated that the game would be available for preorder at 10am Pacific Time on June 20, 2019. I had been waiting seven long years for this moment! In addition to the standard edition which provides the base game, they would also have a limited collector’s edition that comes in a custom box with lots of cool extras including a SteelBook, figurine, hardcover artbook, embroidered patches, metal pin set, keychain, and more. That’s the one I had my eye on.
Starting at 9:30am on June 20, I was right there on the website refreshing the page every five minutes just in case it became available early. At the same time I was checking Amazon, Best Buy, and Game Stop in case one of them got their preorder link up first. I kept patiently waiting and refreshing, waiting and refreshing, thinking they were running late. Only to find out later that scalp bots had apparently scarfed up all the inventory in just 30 seconds! How can that be, the preorder buttons didn’t even have time to go live!
It makes me so mad, those of us who want to buy the product to play and enjoy are being robbed by scalpers who cheat the system and take that enjoyment away from us. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a game or other collectible, it’s not fair to buy out limited editions and inflate the prices, just to make a profit out of it at the expense of others. Most of the scalpers don’t even care about the item; they just immediately put it up for sale on eBay for twice the price.
I would never buy from any of these people no matter how much I wanted something. You know what would happen if everyone had the sense to stop buying stuff at inflated prices from scalpers? We’d have no more scalpers and then maybe we’d be able to actually preorder games without them being sold out in ten seconds because of stupid scalper bots.
With the money these scalpers make, they get to turn around and spend it on other rare items. So they are able to keep making a living off of what is basically extorting consumers. But just because they can get away with it doesn’t mean it’s ethical. Can’t they find a real job like the rest of us… or are they just too lazy to leave their mom’s basement? If they’re such talented programmers, they should be able to get a high-paying IT job. Maybe then they wouldn’t feel the need to take advantage of people who are working hard to earn an honest buck.
I also blame the retailers for failing to at least put purchase limits on such items to prevent this from happening. And you’d think there would be something that could be done to prevent bots like that from placing orders in the first place. So did you try to preorder the Cyberpunk 2077 Collector’s Edition? Did you have the same experience? What is your opinion, are you as ticked off as me? Please comment!