Originally Posted by ynnek
Actually, with Steam, its completely pointless to buy something physically, because in the end, you are still tied to Steam itself for authentication. Nor can you easily lend this game, or trade it with friends that you trust, unless you perhaps associate every Steam game with its own account.
Pointless unless you want the disc in hand so you don't have to wait for downlaods and decyption when a relaod is needed... Pointless if you don't want your box collection on the shelf looking like your book collection.
In any case they still have overheard from publishing both to stores and online.