So I've used Steam for years, though only recently have I ever made a purchase through their system. Over the holidays, I bought several games during their New Years's sale. One of them, Mosby's Confederacy, never would work. It always locked up when I tried to go into a mission. I finally gave up, uninstalled it, and decided to ask Steam for a refund for that game (though I wanted to keep the other 4 games I had purchased at the same time since they worked splendidly).
1) First, I had to create a completely new account just to enter a ticket for customer service. Despite having this built-in cart/game launcher and updater/community service in one hand-dandy application, they couldn't add any customer support to it?!
2) Several days later I got the following response.
Thank you for contacting Steam Customer Support.
Unfortuately, refunds issued are based on the transaction itself and not the individual items within the purchase.
This means if you have requested a refund for a cart purchase, once the refund is issued, it will be for the entire cart purchase.
Note: Emphasis is mine. The spelling error with the word 'unfortunately' is theirs. Oh, the irony!
You have got to be joking me! They can't do line-item refunds? I can go to any store in the country, including McDonald's, and get a refund for a single item that was broken or non-functional or simply unacceptable. I worked for a number of retail shops in the mid-90s, including ones that used a computer system to track transactions and we could give line-item refunds. The company I work for now has a crappy shopping cart from the year 2000 that barely communicates with our other back-end server software, and we can give line-item refunds.
Yet here it is, 2009, and an online tech company that is hoping to position itself as a leader of downloadable games is unable to handle such a simple request?!! Utterly, friggin' ridiculous.