Deep Silver have canceled a load of Metro Exodus Steam keys sold through key resellers after discovering, they say, the keys had been stolen from the factory making boxed copies. Metro Exodus Switched to Epic Games Store Exclusively Enhanced in Development That Produced Physical PC Copies Set Up for Steam, then swapped out the Steam Keys for Epic Keys and Stuck Epic Stickers on the Steam Logo. Apparently some scoundrel scooped abandoned Steam keys to sell on, Deep Silver found out, and they've now canceled those keys, removing the game from the Steam libraries of players who bought them.
While Metro Exodus is not currently sold on Steam, the game is still on Steam because Deep Silver had sold pre-orders for a Steam release. You can buy it directly anymore if you get a Steam key elsewhere, you can activate that on Steam and still receive updates and DLC. For people who'd rather use Steam than Epic's client, just like rarities, that's worth chancing the gray market.
While there are legit Metro Exodus Steam keys still floating around, bought from authorized resellers, Deep Silver says the lot they canceled are "illegal stolen keys." They do not say whether the keys were physical printed items taken from the boxes or swiped from a list intended for the printers, but I suppose that distinction is a matter for the authorities. Deep Silver explained on Thursday:
"These keys have been obtained illegally from the factory where physical key printing took place prior to the announcement of exclusivity with Epic Games, due to the criminal nature of these keys, all unlicensed keys have been deactivated and activation / download of Metro Exodus without the executable file is no longer possible. In addition, the software will be removed from the Steam library of any players using an unauthorized code. The keys are sold on this platform and are therefore illegal. "Which, yeah, is fair enough. But you feel about the switch to epic exclusivity, which makes a pretty clear case of someone selling stolen goods. In suppose they can leave them active as a gesture of goodwill, but there can still be those keys out in the wild, still earning money for the thief. And they won't give you your money back because they never received it.
"If you have been affected we strongly recommend you contact the seller who sold you the unlicensed key and demand a refund," Deep Silver say. Good luck with that.
This is partly why I use unauthorized key reseller sites, I just don't know where the keys came from or why they're cheap. Given that number of people say they had paid more than the normal £ 50 price to get to Metro Exodus on Steam, or were willing to, many of these weren't even cheap.
Deep Silver did officially sell Metro Exodus Steam keys through the Humble and Razer stores, so if you got a key there you'll be fine. Elsewhere… well, you probably know if Deep Silver revoked your key
Metro Exodus is due to get a Steam release once its one-year exclusivity period expires, so some time after February 14th, 2020. What a shame that this sprawling , stinking exclusivity mess has overshadowed the launch of a game that's pretty much the same as our Brendy's Metro Exodus review details.