Civilization VI on Steam for PC has received a rather disturbing change to its end user license agreement (EULA). Now, the popular strategy game would collect a lot more personal information that it should, to the point of tracking your location. Disturbing when you consider that Civilisation VI is a premium game as opposed to a free download on Google Play or the App Store. Diligent Steam users who own Civilization VI have been leaving negative reviews en masse on the game's Steam page. It's a tactic in the gaming community known as review bombing and has been done to show displeasure for such a tacky move on publisher 2K's part.
"The information we collect may include personal information such as your first and/or last name, e-mail address, phone number, photo, mailing address, geolocation, or payment information," reads the new EULA for Civilization VI. "In addition, we may collect your age, gender, date of birth, zip code, hardware configuration, console ID, software products played, survey data, purchases, IP address and the systems you have played on. We may combine the information with your personal information and across other computers or devices that you may use."
Needless to say, users are far from happy.
"I have almost 600 hours on this game and I like it. I was very excited for the Gathering Storm expansion, and I even pre-ordered it, but I won't be playing," reads a review from one user on Steam with 597 hours spent in the game prior to this. "Sadly, because of the new EULA which basically turns the game into spyware, I have already played my last game of CIV 6. Sorry Firaxis, but you're a damn video game company and I don't trust you with this information, and you have no right, and no good reason to be after it."
2K parent company Take Two also publishes the popular GTA V and Red Dead Redemption 2. Its revenue in the quarter ending in March will be $450 million to $500 million (roughly Rs. 3,200 crores to Rs. 3,500 crores), when analysts anticipated $609.1 million. Its shares slumped as much as 14 percent, the most since December 2009.
With its earnings call taking place last week before the change to Civilization VI's EULA, it is possible that its below expectations performance has resulted in a move to milk its existing user base as much as possible.
That said, it is deplorable that despite shifting over 17 million units of Red Dead Redemption 2 in under weeks, Take Two still thinks it's not making enough to keep it or its investors happy, perhaps playing a part in turning Civilization VI into spyware.
If you're a fan of video games, check out Transition, Gadgets 360's gaming podcast. You can listen to it via Apple Podcasts or RSS, or just listen to this week's episode by hitting the play button below.