From: Depot HQ - Virginia
I have to take exception to the position that an "anti-rant" makes it OK to post a "pro-rant". Particularly when the anti-rant is on one system, and the pro-rant is on another. IMHO, neither is very good for the hobby. A rant, by definition, is a rather selfish act. It serves very little purpose, other than letting the person who posted it vent their feelings.
OTOH, a good discussion about the various pros and cons, in this case regarding price and packaging, does the community, and the manufacturers, a great service. It's customer feedback, something any good company wants.
On the subject of preferences, I'd have to say I favor the "box, manual, and CD" package. Digital downloads are fine, for some folks, but not for everyone. Some of us DO read the manual, and it's much easier to do so when it's sitting in black & white on your desk, than if it's in a PDF somewhere on the HD. Yes, you can print out the PDF version if you want, and have a ream of paper and an ink cartridge (or two) you care to expend. Personally, with the price of ink cartridges these days, I feel that cost should be considered when the consumer "prices" a game to buy. ("Let's see, both games are $60, but this one I have to print my own manual, which will take an hour or more, use a cartridge worth $35, and a package of paper. That makes the actual cost to me closer to $100 than $60. I'll buy the other.") Having the CD is also important, in case you ever need to reinstall the game. It's not a perfect world out there, computers die, and so do HD's. Lastly, broadband isn't an option for everyone, no matter how much you might want it. It may not just be difficult to get but, as in my case, simply not available to you at any price, so you're stuck with dial-up.
There's always another side to the coin.
The bar & grill of the SP:WaW Community.