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Steam Still Selling Broken PC Game After 2 Months (Update: Listing Removed, Problems Persist)

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Update: In the few hours since this article was published, Steam has stopped selling Earth 2160 and removed the product page. Still no word as to when a fix might hit.

Original: Some, if not all, of those who have have bought Reality Pump's 2006 PC strategy title Earth 2160 from Valve's digital distribution platform Steam have been unable to play the game since February, going by this Steam Forums thread.

Prior to February 2009, the game ran just fine. But after an update to the Steam client, owners began reporting a "failed to get SteamID" error that prevents the Steam version from launching. The message links to a support site that offers no help.

The "failed to get SteamID error" exists to this day, Shacknews has confirmed, as the copy we purchased and downloaded this morning suffers from that exact problem.

More worrisome is the fact that Steam continues to sell the now-$5 game, despite the issue. Since February, Steam Support has told multiple customers that the company is "aware of the problem," though it has offered no word as to when a fix may arrive.

Reports on refunds are mixed. One user claims to have received a refund after complaining of the issue, while another claims their request for a refund was denied.

The problem is isolated to the Steam version of Earth 2160, with the regular retail edition continuing to operate normally. That's a departure from most games, which tend to see problems appear across all versions due to universal, not store-specific, issues.

One user reports success using a "modified" executable, though it apparently requires editing the Windows registry. Others say they can successful launch the game from the installation directory, but as with the other workaround, this does not work for everyone.

Shacknews contacted Valve early this morning for comment on the issue, but had yet to receive a response as of publication. Thanks to Shacker gexecuter for the tip.

Chris Faylor was previously a games journalist creating content at Shacknews.

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From The Chatty
  • reply
    April 15, 2009 3:09 PM

    Get rid of online checks I say.

    I'm sure Steam folks are being pushed to this course of action more and more each month. I'm beginning to think about avoiding Steam since I'm going to be out of the country not too long from now and my experiences with their "Offline Mode" stinks.

    • reply
      April 15, 2009 3:11 PM

      i would be willing to bet the issue lies more within the steam overlay application than an online check, which hardly any steam games utilize...

    • reply
      April 15, 2009 3:40 PM

      Steam doesn't use "online" checks, to my knowledge. Steam IS the online check.

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