We knew it was coming, but like me, most of you completely forgot about it. Yes sir, Steam will soon be showing off prices in the humble Rand as it ditches the US dollar in this territory for a more localised currency.
Here’s the mail that most of you probably received yesterday, detailing this:
Dear Steam User,
Steam will soon be priced in South African Rand!
If your Steam wallet has any money in it on November 10th, 2015, your U.S. Dollar balance will be converted to Rand, at a conversion rate dictated by market value at the time of conversion.
To view your account balance, simply log into your Steam client or the Steam website at http://www.steampowered.com. Once you have logged in, you will see your balance in the upper-right corner next to your account name.
The Steam Support Team
And that most likely means that your games are going to cost a few bucks extra. Because it’s not just a change in currency that’ll be seen on Steam, but the inclusion of the Value Added Tax as well which will result in you paying 14% more for games. And don’t count our ratings board out either. We’ve been lucky so far with the kind of games that are allowed into our borders, but you can also expect the FPB to take a more active role in seeing just which games are allowed across our digital borders, with a suitable age-gating attached to them as well.
So, is it all doom and gloom then? Maybe, maybe not. We could end up with some decent regional pricing that is on the ball and similar to what we’re currently paying on other localised store fronts like Origin. Or the worst case scenario, could be that our pricing is based on UK markets, much like our local PSN is – which means very, very expensive games.
It’s the apocalypse scenario that is more worrying: Region-locking. Right now, a great many of you make use of websites such as Green Man Gaming to get your hands on cheaper Steam codes, websites which usually offer some damn good deals on games. It’s a grey area of consumerism, as there’s often no extra tax involved in these deals, but it’s hardly illegal stuff.
But if region-locking is implemented, you can pretty much say goodbye to cheap deals for now. Of course, enterprising users will always find a way around such restrictions. So, how do you feel about a more local Steam marketplace then?
Last Updated: November 5, 2015