Picard Facepalm

In spite of all the insanely broken video games we’ve seen hit the market since last fall, gamers are still pre-ordering titles. In fact, the video game pre-order rate is actually growing. It’s up 24 percent in 2015.

The information comes from Adobe Digital Index and their new report on the gaming industry. Not only are pre-orders up 24 percent over 2014, pre-order revenue has increased 33 percent year-over-year.

Adobe Analytics even polled the types of emotions customers associated with pre-ordering. 33 percent of consumers chose sadness as the emotion most often linked with pre-orders, while only 18 percent picked happy stuff like joy and admiration. I love that.

How long will it take for the consumer base at-large to catch on to the bogus nature of pre-ordering video games? First of all, thanks to digital distribution, the risk of something selling out is gone completely. You can still get hard copies of games on release pretty much anywhere. If that fails, just go home and download it directly from your console.

The incentives publishers include really aren’t worth your time, either. Do you need that single skin or golden gun in the grand scheme of things? No. You need a working game.

Look at Batman: Arkham Knight on PC. The game released in such a broken state that it was pulled from virtual retailers. Those who pre-ordered got their silly Harley Quinn mission, which was terrible, while the game still isn’t back up for sale for PC gamers.

The practice of pre-ordering games started when it was actually hard to get them. I remember spending weeks looking for a copy of Tales of Symphonia on the GameCube. Digital distribution has completely solved that problem. There’s no need to pre-order; yet, why are we still doing it?