A new campaign launched by Arab players is asking Valve to consider supporting the MENA region further, in a new attempt to urge Steam owners to consider a pricing befitting to the living expenses of the Arab world
The request comes in the form of a petition through Change.org website launched by a young man nicknamed “Moonkey Aranbuss” in order to convey the voice of Arab players to the decision makers at Valve. The petition addresses the high price of video games compared to the monthly income of average players and demands consideration regarding a pricing system that takes this into account. Something not unheard of on the digital Steam storefront.
“Players have no choice but to sail the seas and pirate games due to the absurd prices, many countries got the regional pricing feature, and now it is time to include MENA region as well since the market is big enough and it’s getting even bigger.” The petition speaks, which has received a considerable amount of signatures so far with more than 9,000 players signing, surpassing the initial target of just 1,500 signatures.
The idea of e-petitions may be new in the Arab region, but previous attempts by international players have shown their power to deliver consumer desires to developers, such as those who demanded the release of Dark Souls on the PC and received a million signatures at the time, and others that demanded the launch of Bayonetta and Vanquish on the same platform as well. These were only two incidents out of a long list that has shown the intent of video game companies to listen to the demands of their customers.
Steam already offers a regional pricing system in a number of regions around the world, such as Russia, Argentina and Brazil, which currently have the lowest prices compared to the standard storefront. Therefore, having an Arabic store with affordable prices may not be something far off. Although the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia already have their own pricing, it has become customary to see prices reaching above the global market in some cases, so a rework on these stores to take the rest of the Arab countries into account is necessary.
There is no doubt that the Arab world has become an important market for global video games business at the present time, with many companies -the most recent of which being Epic Games– have begun to support local players and participate in the development of this emerging market, which will play an important role in the future of digital entertainment. With the launch of various esports organizations in the Arab region and promises to turn some of its countries into destinations for esports players around the world, there is a lot that Arab players can look forward to.
You can participate and sign the e-petition here to leave your mark.