Nintendo loses German court case regarding digital pre-order cancellation policy

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Though Nintendo may currently be winning the state-side court case regarding Team Xecuter, they're not doing as well in Germany. A legal dispute that has been ongoing since 2018 has reached a conclusion, and while Nintendo initially won the case, the ruling has been overturned. The court case was centered on Nintendo's eShop pre-order policy; originally, customers were completely unable to cancel any pre-orders made on the Nintendo Switch eShop. Two European regions--Norway and Germany--didn't find the policy agreeable, due to the fact customers weren't protected after making irreversible pre-orders of a product that wouldn't be immediately usable.

In 2020, following the legal complaint, and despite its victory in court, Nintendo changed its policy to allow customers to refund a pre-order so long as the game is set to launch in more than 7 days. However, both the Norwegian Consumer Council and Germany Consumer Organizations appealed the decision, resulting in the court changing its ruling in their favor. The fact that customers can purchase and receive a pre-load of a game that is unusable until launch, is what the German court took issue with. It's currently unknown as to when or whether Nintendo will be changing its pre-order policy following this ruling.

Nintendo had already offered video games for download in its e-shop before the official release date. The download usually included a software-comprehensive "pre-load" of the game as well as an icon displayed on the game console. The unlocking of the game took place via update only on the official start date. Such online purchases can usually be revoked within 14 days without giving reasons.

However, Nintendo had excluded the right of withdrawal and relied on a legal exception. However, the prerequisites for the right of revocation were not met, as the download made available after the pre-order did not yet contain any usable game. Until the release date, the game is worthless for the buyers and the contract of Nintendo is not fulfilled in any way.

...The Regional Court of Frankfurt am Main had dismissed the vzbv's action at first instance. With their appeal to the Higher Regional Court of Frankfurt, the consumer advocates have now been successful. At the hearing, after discussing the legal situation, the judges had advised Nintendo to recognise the vzbv's claim for injunctive relief as justified. The company complied with this. In the acknowledgment judgment, the court upheld the vzbv's action in its entirety. As is customary in such judgments, the acknowledgment judgment does not contain any grounds for decision.

:arrow: Source (Translation courtesy of NintendoLife)
 

godreborn

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You can cancel digital preorders in the US iirc. Think I cancelled Mario Golf when we had those cdn download issues.

One thing I learned recently is that you can't have more than 3 systems signed in and play games with one account or else it will error on one or more of the switches. This is just for digital games. I've been battling this for two days straight. As a result, I may need to sell one of my consoles. It's going to be the hackable one, but I need to decide for sure if I want to do that. I'll put it up on here if I decide yes, before the end of the week. It's going to be hard to see it go. :(
 

RichardTheKing

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Now, if only Nintendo realised that banned consoles means no eShop revenue - and preventing banned consoles from updating their games means less chance of physical sales too...
That never made sense to me; sure, stop them from using Switch Online for multiplayer, but revoking eShop access?
 

godreborn

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Yes, now I remember, you have 7 days prior to preloading. Once it's preloaded, even if it's not released yet, you can't cancel.
 

Kwyjor

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I scratch my head. Why does anyone need to play a new game so very badly that they can't possibly afford to wait a couple of hours for the download on release day..? Especially when there's going to be a gigantic patch to fix all the launch bugs a few days later anyway!? Do people not already have other games they can play instead?
 
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JFizDaWiz

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Now, if only Nintendo realised that banned consoles means no eShop revenue - and preventing banned consoles from updating their games means less chance of physical sales too...
That never made sense to me; sure, stop them from using Switch Online for multiplayer, but revoking eShop access?
yah of all the things to ban me from. I only played 1 game online and losing access to that isn't that big of a deal, losing access to the eshop sucked more.
 
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TomSwitch

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WTF, Nintendo should give a refund policy like steam. Play the game and don't like it refund in full as long as you haven't played that long.

The Steam refund offer, within two weeks of purchase and with less than two hours of playtime, applies to games and software applications on the Steam store.

Nintendo just give one hour is enough.

Nintendo will end up selling more games when they take away the risk of buying rubbish.
 

RichardTheKing

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yah of all the things to ban me from. I only played 1 game online and losing access to that isn't that big of a deal, losing access to the eshop sucked more.
Updated console with Daybreak, then tried to legitimately install a game update - that's my reason. Oops.
My train of thinking was that updates (and DLC) downloaded on sysNAND don't carry over to emuMMC, so how else was I supposed to update my game? Not one for piracy, but I've been forced into it ever since; great job there, Ninty.
 

Chaosta

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WTF, Nintendo should give a refund policy like steam. Play the game and don't like it refund in full as long as you haven't played that long.

The Steam refund offer, within two weeks of purchase and with less than two hours of playtime, applies to games and software applications on the Steam store.

Nintendo just give one hour is enough.

Nintendo will end up selling more games when they take away the risk of buying rubbish.
that would work if nintendo didnt sell mostly rubbish games. seems like 75% of switch games released are just ports of smartphone games smh..
 
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Stash23

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I scratch my head. Why does anyone need to play a new game so very badly that they can't possibly afford to wait a couple of hours for the download on release day..? Especially when there's going to be a gigantic patch to fix all the launch bugs a few days later anyway!? Do people not already have other games they can play instead?
It has more to do with server traffic when gigantic loads of people try to download a game the day of.
A pre-load permits the purchaser to have the game file ready to be played days in advance, giving them the chance in time when you download it. As opposed to waiting, then being stuck having to wait abyssal download times.
This is the sole advantage of pre-loading games.
 

eriol33

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I scratch my head. Why does anyone need to play a new game so very badly that they can't possibly afford to wait a couple of hours for the download on release day..? Especially when there's going to be a gigantic patch to fix all the launch bugs a few days later anyway!? Do people not already have other games they can play instead?
I did this when saga frontier was launched on Steam, but it's an exception since I waited that game for 20 years to complete, so let me just pre-order it to celebrate the release. I have never pre-ordered games other than this occasion.
 

Spider_Man

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Fuck you nintendo, if someone decides to cancel their pre order 1 day before its due to launch, who the fuck are you to reject.

But in saying that, what the fuck do nintendo have that is worth pre ordering, wii u ports, rinse repeat 1st party recycled titles, last gen ports, ps2 ports, inferior delayed ports of current titles.

Nintendo put more effort in finding folk to take to court than they do thinking of new titles to make.

And fyi, if your a fan of thr big N, I know it'll be hard, but dont quote me trying to force your opinion and defend nintendo by saying I am wrong, your entitled to your opinion as am I.

My findings are based on what I physically see all the time, but hey ho let me guess all those shouting good news tx suck, good bye garry are the same ones asking the same question if there's a soft mod hack for new switch.

Or the type that call hackers lazy for not finding new exploits for new consoles.

Sad news this week to see the end of the long going tx, they did us well for a long time and its a shame big N shut them down, I guess no one else will dare fill the void.
 
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