NZ game-rental site accused of dodgy practice

01 Jul 10

Game Kingdom, a local game-rental site, has reportedly continued to charge those who signed up for a free two-week trial, ignoring the requests of many such users to cancel their accounts.

The site offers a two-week trial of its service free of charge. Under normal circumstances users will pay a monthly fee and receive up to four games at a time that can be swapped for other titles at a user's leisure. However, the registration  process for the free trial requires a user to set up an account and enter their credit or debit card details. Game Kingdom's system automatically sets the user up with a paid subscription to the service once the two-week period expires and proceeds to deduct a monthly fee. 

Game Kingdom's own FAQ explains that users can cancel their accounts at any time by emailing the business and requesting as much (no other contact details are given on the site). However, reports from both Gameplanet and NZGamer forumgoers indicate that Game Kingdom has ignored such requests from a number of users and has failed to communicate with them whatsoever. In many instances, users have had to resort to cancelling their credit or debit cards in order to stop the deductions.

Back in August 2009, one Gameplanet forum member by the username of "cheesey" claimed to have sent multiple emails during his trial period with the intention of canceling his account after receiving no games. "None of our emails were acknowledged," he wrote. "Now they've charged my credit card for $18.90 and I'm not happy about it as they don't have a phone number on their 'contact us' page." A quick glance through the rest of the Gameplanet thread shows that user "cheesey" was far from alone in his dilemma. However, some forumgoers claim that Game Kingdom did refund them eventually, with the business citing "server issues" for the lack of communication.

Interestingly, although the first reports of malpractice emerged almost a year ago, Game Console has had recent reports that newly registered users with Game Kingdom are still encountering the same problem. 

Have any of you had similar experiences with Game Kingdom, either resolved or unresolved? We'd love to hear from you. Sound out in the comments section below!

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