Soundrack - Why were the FLACs pulled?

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Wasted Vibe Land
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Soundrack - Why were the FLACs pulled?

Post by Wasted Vibe Land » October 6th, 2014, 3:04 am

Yesterday (Sunday, Oct 5, 2014) the FLACS were silently pulled from all editions on GOG. A post by a user on GOG's forum, confirms that they were pulled by publisher request.
So, now who ever downloaded all content immediately has them, while others get the short end of the stick.

Can someone from inXile shed some light as to why this happened?

medicnick83
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Re: Soundrack - Why were the FLACs pulled?

Post by medicnick83 » October 6th, 2014, 11:48 am

This is not acceptable... Why did they do this?

However, having said that, you can still get it via 'other' means... but you already know that.

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Re: Soundrack - Why were the FLACs pulled?

Post by eidolon » October 6th, 2014, 12:17 pm

This is absolutely unacceptable, why did you do that? Why would you just remove from GOG accounts content people paid for? Anyone remember Amazon erasing 1984 and Animal Farm from Kindles? Well, I guess that's how it feels.

I'd better go now and download all other goodies, before you erase them as well.

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dorkboy
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Re: Soundrack - Why were the FLACs pulled?

Post by dorkboy » October 6th, 2014, 1:14 pm

uh.. Why? :?
marmelade & jam

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The Tallest
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Re: Soundrack - Why were the FLACs pulled?

Post by The Tallest » October 6th, 2014, 1:16 pm

What's a FLAC?
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David Ngo wrote: There are two kinds of people: sheep and sharks. Sharks are winners, and they don't look back because they have no necks. Necks are for sheep.

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sear
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Re: Soundrack - Why were the FLACs pulled?

Post by sear » October 6th, 2014, 1:23 pm

We had to pull it from GOG.com due to licensing agreements with the composer. Lossless was supposed to be exclusive to stand-alone purchases. Sorry guys!

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Gruftlord
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Re: Soundrack - Why were the FLACs pulled?

Post by Gruftlord » October 6th, 2014, 1:38 pm

Mark Morgan made you sign a licensing agreement that let you not distribute the high quality version of the sound track to your backers?
I'm not sure what i should think of that. (edit: see below: apparently it's complicated. i chose to have no oppinion on the matter at all)
Last edited by Gruftlord on October 7th, 2014, 11:10 am, edited 1 time in total.

Wasted Vibe Land
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Re: Soundrack - Why were the FLACs pulled?

Post by Wasted Vibe Land » October 6th, 2014, 1:40 pm

sea wrote:We had to pull it from GOG.com due to licensing agreements with Mark Morgan. Unfortunately were were never actually allowed to distribute the FLAC version with the game itself, that was our mistake, lossless was supposed to be exclusive to stand-alone purchases. Sorry guys!
And silently pulling the FLACs from everyone's game shelf on a Sunday evening/ night was the way to amend your mistake.
How about owning your mistake for all the copies already sold?

I guess that's too much to ask given that if we didn't make it public, no one would ever bother to even say a word about it.

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Waywocket
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Re: Soundrack - Why were the FLACs pulled?

Post by Waywocket » October 6th, 2014, 1:55 pm

sea wrote:We had to pull it from GOG.com due to licensing agreements with teh composer. Lossless was supposed to be exclusive to stand-alone purchases. Sorry guys!
Wow, that... leaves a really bitter taste.

Why agree to such a petulant restriction? I hope it meant you got a good discount. My opinion of Mark Morgan has certainly dropped a fair few notches.

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Re: Soundrack - Why were the FLACs pulled?

Post by shmerl » October 6th, 2014, 6:29 pm

sea wrote:We had to pull it from GOG.com due to licensing agreements with the composer. Lossless was supposed to be exclusive to stand-alone purchases. Sorry guys!
That's unfortunate. I don't like when authors charge extra just for the fact that the release is lossless. It's kind of stupid, but at least it wasn't your decision. If the author would be more considerate though, he wouldn't demand pulling the soundtrack from those who already got it. That's nasty.

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Re: Soundrack - Why were the FLACs pulled?

Post by shmerl » October 6th, 2014, 6:37 pm

The Tallest wrote:What's a FLAC?
FLAC is a free lossless audio codec. In short, audio can be encoded with lossless and lossy codecs. Lossless compressing codec preserves the original sound information while reducing the size of the raw original. Lossy codecs reduce the size even more by losing some of the information from the original. I.e. irreversibly losing it. At the same time if lossy encoding was done at transparency level of the given codec (let's say Opus, Vorbis, MP3, AAC, etc.) then you wouldn't hear any difference between the lossy and lossless format.

Problems will start when you'll try to reencode the file encoded with lossy codec using another lossy codec. Then you'll degrade quality right away, since each codec uses its own techniques and tricks to mask the lossy parts.

In short, encoding from lossy is like making a copy of an audio tape - the quality is always going down. On the other hand encoding from losless is like encoding from the master copy.

So having FLAC originals is an extra benefit - you can always encode them in any lossy codec of your choice at transparency level without losing the audio quality. So if tomorrow another better codec comes out (for example even better than Opus), you can always take the FLAC original and encode from it safely. On the other hand if all you have is MP3, then better don't touch it if you don't want to degrade it. I.e. it will be forever stuck as MP3.
Last edited by shmerl on October 6th, 2014, 9:25 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: Soundrack - Why were the FLACs pulled?

Post by Gonchi » October 6th, 2014, 7:29 pm

sea wrote:We had to pull it from GOG.com due to licensing agreements with the composer. Lossless was supposed to be exclusive to stand-alone purchases. Sorry guys!
Apology accepted when you restore the download to GOG for backers and buyers that had already purchased it. You don't get to shrug away retroactively pulling a purchase because you dun goofed.

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Re: Soundrack - Why were the FLACs pulled?

Post by Wasted Vibe Land » October 7th, 2014, 5:16 am

sea wrote:We had to pull it from GOG.com due to licensing agreements with the composer. Lossless was supposed to be exclusive to stand-alone purchases. Sorry guys!
Care to comment, and most importantly, act on the development as described here and here?

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Re: Soundrack - Why were the FLACs pulled?

Post by shmerl » October 7th, 2014, 7:55 am

Wasted Vibe Land wrote:
sea wrote:We had to pull it from GOG.com due to licensing agreements with the composer. Lossless was supposed to be exclusive to stand-alone purchases. Sorry guys!
Care to comment, and most importantly, act on the development as described here and here?
That's very interesting. I hope either the author realized that charging anything extra for lossless is a bad idea or it was a mistake to begin with and this thing will be sorted out soon enough.

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Re: Soundrack - Why were the FLACs pulled?

Post by shmerl » October 7th, 2014, 8:04 am

From the GOG represenative:
It's not our content to do with as we please. All of the exta content you see on our site is from publisher approval and if they tell us to remove it for whatever reason, we have to comply. Sorry :(
So I guess it means inXile in this case.

From this thread:
Mark confirmed there was some agreement with inXile, what he wasn't aware of was that the FLAC soundtrack was pulled from sale or people's accounts here. Whoever made the call to pull it from GOG, it doesn't seem to have been at Mark's request.
So if I understand it right:

1. The composer had no interest in making any difference between lossy / lossless music.
2. inXile decided to split them into different releases with different pricing.
3. Mistake happened and GOG put out lossless as a free extra.
4. inXile contacted GOG and they pulled it even from those who already got it.

Is that right? Is all that inXile's call, or there is some third side involved here? If it's all up to inXile, I'd say it's very proper for them not to pull the FLAC version from those who already got it.

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sear
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Re: Soundrack - Why were the FLACs pulled?

Post by sear » October 7th, 2014, 8:57 am

Gonchi wrote:Apology accepted when you restore the download to GOG for backers and buyers that had already purchased it. You don't get to shrug away retroactively pulling a purchase because you dun goofed.
Kickstarter backers were never promised a FLAC version of the OST explicitly. Users who bought (and go on to buy) the soundtrack separately on Bandcamp (or who got a Bandcamp key via buying the OST as a Kickstarter/PayPal add-on) still get a FLAC version.

As for people claiming they've emailed Mark, I can't comment one way or another on that as obviously I'm not privy to those conversations. I'll look into it.

We did not remove the FLAC version to force people to "double dip" on a separate purchase, and obviously if we wanted to do that, we never would have made the FLAC version available on GOG.com to begin with. There's no conspiracy here guys, sorry. ;)

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Re: Soundrack - Why were the FLACs pulled?

Post by Gonchi » October 7th, 2014, 9:14 am

sea wrote:Kickstarter backers were never promised a FLAC version of the OST explicitly. Users who bought (and go on to buy) the soundtrack separately still get a FLAC version as per our contract with Mark Morgan.
That's besides the point. Your solution and the way you went about fixing your mistake is unacceptable.
sea wrote:As for people claiming they've emailed Mark, I can't comment one way or another on that as obviously I'm not privy to those conversations. I'll look into it.
I contacted Mark. I have the e-mails in my inbox, should I post them?
sea wrote:We did not remove the FLAC version to force people to "double dip" on a separate purchase. That's ridiculous.
Is it? Then restore the FLAC version to buyers and backers that already redeemed their GOG versions.
sea wrote:There's no conspiracy here guys, sorry. ;)
Who said anything about a conspiracy? I'd say Ineptitude and a blatant disregard for your costumers seems to sum up the situation better.

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Re: Soundrack - Why were the FLACs pulled?

Post by Revolucas » October 7th, 2014, 9:34 am

Sea shouldn't even said anything about the licensing issue and just said it was a mistake. People are making a big deal out of nothing. No reason you should be childish by sending hateful letters to Mark Morgan. If he did make a deal to be able to make money from separate soundtrack sales it's really none of your business. You were already given a version of the OST for free.
I'd say Ineptitude and a blatant disregard for your costumers seems to sum up the situation better.
Which is a crock of shit. They have given everyone exactly what they promised backers. So what they take something back because it was a mistake, you don't own it to begin with. You license it.

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Re: Soundrack - Why were the FLACs pulled?

Post by shmerl » October 7th, 2014, 9:41 am

sea wrote:We did not remove the FLAC version to force people to "double dip" on a separate purchase, and obviously if we wanted to do that, we never would have made the FLAC version available on GOG.com to begin with. There's no conspiracy here guys, sorry. ;)
Can you please clarify if it's solely inXile's decision, or it's something pushed by Deep Silver who print the physical media for the game and OST?

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Re: Soundrack - Why were the FLACs pulled?

Post by shmerl » October 7th, 2014, 9:44 am

Revolucas wrote:They have given everyone exactly what they promised backers.
They pulled what people already got. If it was a mistake, they could notify and explain what is going on. And whoever made that decision could act better and let people keep it. Not only that didn't happen, no one was even notified about the mistake.

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