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Online shop resells discounted Witcher 3 keys without dev approval

CD Projekt Red is engaged in a bit of a dustup with digital game retailer Green Man Gaming after the latter began reselling discounted keys for The Witcher 3 without CDPR's approval or involvement.

Alex Wawro

May 7, 2015

2 Min Read

CD Projekt Red is engaged in a bit of a dustup with digital game retailer Green Man Gaming after the latter began selling discounted keys for CDPR's upcoming game The Witcher 3 without CDPR's approval or involvement.

By doing so GMG effectively acted as a key reseller, a touchy subject in game development; unscrupulous key resellers have been known to undercut developers by buying heavily discounted game keys in bulk and selling them at a slight markup.

Earlier this week GMG launched a special pre-order deal that saw it selling Witcher 3 keys for $39, a roughly 30 percent discount off the game's $60 sticker price. That promotion has since ended, but not before CDPR biz dev chief Rafal Jaki publicly asked people not to buy the keys because "we had not sold them keys and don't know the origin of them."

Speaking to GameSpot, GMG CEO Paul Sulyot responded by claiming that after trying (and failing) to convince CDPR to work with GMG on a promotional deal for the game ("they instead focused on supporting their own platform, GOG")  his company did an end-run around CDPR by buying up digital copies of the game from other third-party retailers that CDPR had agreed to work with.

"We believe that CDPR’s desire to support their own platform by working with retail outlets that would not conflict with their own is greater than that of meeting the demands of their audience," Sulyot told GameSpot. "Therefore we made the decision to indirectly secure the product and deliver it to our customers."

CDPR parent company CD Projekt actually got its start as a game distributor in Poland, and its Gog.com subsidiary recently kicked its Steam competitor, GOG Galaxy, into open beta. It has engaged in game distribution partnerships with GMG in the past, and Gamasutra has reached out to CDPR representatives for comment on what this means for the company's future digital distribution plans.

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