German retailers will no longer be able to sell pre-orders to games that lack a specific release date.
According to national outlet Heise, the Higher Regional Court of Munich has ruled that stores can no longer offer pre-purchase of products without a cemented release date. In the eyes of judges, failing to provide a date of delivery to a consumer violates the legal duty of information.
This means games can no longer get away with pre-orders featuring unspecified “available soon” release dates, or vague indicators like “coming 2019.”
The decision comes after a consumer protection claim was filed against Media Markt over smart phone pre-orders. The final ruling now affects all products with pre-purchase, including all video games and associated hardware and accessories.
"When consumers order goods on the internet, providers must specify by when the goods are delivered," commented Düsseldorf Consumer CEO Wolfgang Schuldzinski.