Nintendo Switch Online Game Rental Services! Worth it or Worthless?
We’ve all seen it before one time or another.
!Nintendo Switch Unlimited Time Rental Digital Game!
And because the price is half of an original game, we have been tempted with purchasing the rental service, because of one simple fact.
Who doesn’t like a good deal?
In this day and age of online shopping, finding the cheapest deals has become a sort of sport. Bouncing from Shopee to Lazada to Qoo10 and so on, we seek out vouchers that these platforms throw at us to compete with one another. Stacking a Credit Card promotion on top of an available Voucher and throwing in some coins to offset the price is commonplace, and if you find the best deal, you are lauded with praise from your peers and the phrase “share leh”.
Gamers are no exception, because let’s face it, gaming isn’t cheap. A console can cost you upwards of $500 and that’s only for the console. Games and accessories can cost you even more than the console in the long run, and so online platforms that give huge discounts seem like a godsend. However, the digital age also comes with its own fair share of problems.
Nintendo Switch Online Game Rental Services.
At first glance, it seems legitimate enough. It has been posted on multiple platforms in some shape or form, all promoting cheap games for rent for an unlimited time. And to the average buyer, if every platform is promoting it, it has to be legitimate, doesn’t it. So where is the danger?
Firstly, let’s take a look at how it works.
To rent out a game, a Seller will have the main game installed digitally on his or her account. When you purchase the rental service, you are not renting the game itself, you are actually renting the Seller’s “premium” account. Usually this will be followed with cautionary messages like:
User is not allowed to make any changes to the given accounts.
You must be connected to the internet to login to the game.
What is actually happening is you are logging in to the Seller’s account via internet and playing his or her game. What happens if the Seller decides to change his or her password one day, and disappear? You will be left stranded, $30 gone, with no way to contact the seller and no game.
If a Seller has rented the game out to multiple people, and Nintendo detects "suspicious activity" from his or her account, the account might get banned and again, you will be out $30 and all that time and effort spent on the game.
And that’s not all you need to watch out for.
Digital Game Codes and Physical Copies.
Now this is a 50/50. Some games, even if they are physical copies, only have digital codes inside them, and rather than run the risk of a lost parcel, some Sellers might prefer to open the case and just sell the code.
However, the Switch has been successfully hacked. What this means for you as a buyer is, some Physical Cartridges might be pirated. Digital Codes might also have been purchased using a stolen credit card, and if found out, the account using the game might be banned. It is almost impossible to figure out whether a game you are planning to potentially purchase is at risk or not until you receive it, and so the general rule of thumb is this:
If it seems too good to be true, it probably isn’t.
If a Seller is offering insanely low prices, without a catch like a minimum purchase or something else, it probably isn’t legitimate.
What we can do as buyers is to be smart.
Always research the Seller if you are unsure of their legitimacy: Check their reviews and ratings, do the people commenting sound like actual people? Or do they sound like bots or people paid to give good ratings. Usually customers posting pictures of items received, or using English that doesn’t sound like Google translated Chinese is a good sign.
Check their Facebook account, Website, or even Google their Company name. If they are a scam account, people will be talking about them. If they are a legitimate Seller, people will be talking about them as well.
Message them, and wait for their response. A tell-tale sign of a scam is when they pressure you by stating limited time offer and refuse to answer your inquiries until the time limit is up, forcing you to make a purchase out of pure Kiasu-ness. (Of course if the promotion is running for 2 hours starting at midnight, this may not apply. Sellers have to sleep too.)
Use as much time and effort that you spent finding good deals and vouchers, into doing some detective work on your potential purchase and you will be just fine!
At the end of the day, while we as consumers should look out for what is beneficial for us, we should also consider the dangers of piracy and the popular trend of console modding. While it does save us money, it does affect the companies that work hard to bring you these games, and a game's sales may have direct influence on whether a company continues to bring you high quality games.
You might think, I'm just one person, and I won't have an effect on the games industry. But if everyone thinks this way, that is a dangerous path the future of gaming might be taking.
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