Ten ways the games industry is shafting you

When Publisher X said their half-finished game would go gold in two months, what's the chance they really believed it? We'd say pretty low.

While there are occasions when legitimate delays cause release dates to be pushed back, we're pretty confident that much of the time we're just being lied to. Why? A lot of it has to do with inspiring confidence in stock holders, but in the end you're the one being shafted. Your only defenses: try to avoid preorders, and don't assume that "Spring 2008" doesn't actually mean "Fall 2011," as you might just be setting yourself up for disappointment.

Oh, and don't trust the retailersÂeither.

Whether you're being forced to buy a pair of shoes to unlock a new player, or you're paying outright for that unlimited lives cheat, as in Codemasters' scheme, pay-per-cheat scams are complete bull.

"Sorry you're stuck on your Micro Machines game, Johnny, but I don't want toÂgive Chodemasters my credit card number." Johnny is a one-legged orphan, by the way.

Just say no to this ridiculous money grab, and if you absolutely must have that "big head mode," point your TV at one of those neat fun house mirrors.

On the next page: unnecessary peripherals and stripped down junk...

Associate Editor, Digital at PC Gamer