I was watching “The Deadliest Catch”, as my Housemate goes through the seasons on DVD, and I had the totally unoriginal thought that it would make a good game. I found a version on the Discovery Channel website, and at the same time Google let me know there’s an Android version.
Except I couldn’t find it in the Marketplace. Another look back at the webpage above, and I noticed it was only available in the US.
As many others have, I’ve been bitten by the disconnect that is Global communications versus the rather parochial world of International trade.
I’ve heard all kinds of “reasons” for this, which seem to boil down to how “rights” work in different regions, or something about “bypassing local distribution”. None of which really makes any sense in this globally connected world. What makes it even sillier in this case is that the Marketplace is the first (and often only) place that an Android user goes to find applications. I’m not bypassing any local distribution here, because there isn’t any local distribution. There is no physical product, and the Marketplace has been set up to deal with buying applications in just about any currency.
Of course, this exists for other media too. Games on X-Box are often only released for certain regions – I’m talking Live Arcade here. You can’t easily buy some music from places like Amazon.com, if you live overseas – even if you can’t find a local place to buy it. Some DVD’s are simply not released in some regions, or not in particular formats. I had to import a Box-set of a particular TV show, because they weren’t releasing it here as a box set – with all the extras you often buy box sets for. Instead they had vague plans to release it season by season. Maybe. As far as I’m aware it still hasn’t been released over two years later.
And this is the ridiculous part. Someone has a product I want, I have money I want to give them for said product. I’m quite happy to give local people money to sell me games/music/movies/whatever; if they can supply it. If they can’t, and I can’t get hold of what I want because of some kind of region issue, then the producer/publisher/whatever is missing out on potential revenue. And I get irritable.
On the upside, I guess I’m saving money.