Five game companies, along with Valve, were fined a total of € 7.8 million for restricting game sales in certain regions in Europe.
Companies that made “geographical blocking” in the European Economic Area faced serious fines sanctions by the European Commission. The five companies that got penalized are: Bandai Namco, Capcom, Focus Home, Koch Media and ZeniMax (Bethesda’s parent company).
The statement made by European Commission Vice President Margrethe Vestage is as follows: “The sanctions imposed today against the ‘geoblocking’ practices of Valve and five game companies remind that cross-border sales restrictions by contract are prohibited under the EU competition law. Such practices deprive European consumers of the advantages of the EU Digital Single Market and the opportunity to shop for the most affordable offer in the EU. ”
Geo-blocking apps deal with nearly 100 computer games of different genres, including sports, simulation, and action games. The European Commission states that the geographical barrier is implemented outside of Czechia, Poland, Hungary, Romania, Slovakia, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.
Bandai Namco, Capcom, Focus Home, Koch Media and ZeniMax companies openly acknowledged the rule violations and cooperated with the commission. Due to this cooperation, penalties were reduced by 10% and 15%. Just below, you can examine which company was charged how much.
Which companies got how much penalties with Valve?
Steam denied the charges and chose not to cooperate with the commission, and was fined over € 1.6 million. Steam and any of the 5 companies that have been fined can take the matter to the courts and claim compensation if they wish.
So what do you think about the fine given to these game companies? You can share your thoughts with us in the comments section.