Frequently asked questions

General
What is Terminals.io?

Terminals.io is the ultimate place for gaming enthusiasts, journalists, and developers to share in their love of games. Gamers of all stripes can check out some of the hottest upcoming releases from both AAA and Indie devs and receive updates as soon as news drops for any titles they like. Registered media, streamers, and content creators can additionally request and receive codes to play those games. For developers and publishers, it's the best toolkit available to get your games out to the people you want to reach, streamlining contact management, press-kit hosting, code distribution, and coverage tracking.

Who is Terminals.io for?

While Terminals.io is ultimately designed for video game developers and publishers, as well as members of the media, streamers, and content creators, it's also a place for gaming enthusiasts to explore upcoming releases. Devs and publishers create their own Terminals while media, content creators, and gamers then visit those Terminals to discover new games and (in the case of registered media) request codes to play them.

So you'll send me games. For free. What's the catch?

Who doesn't love free games? That being said the only "catch" is that in return for the game, we ask that you provide media coverage (a review, Let's Play video or similar) for that product. Game developers and publishers want to let the world know about their games; if you are in the media or have a Twitch or YouTube channel (or similar), those same companies want you to play their games and to tell your audiences about them! Of course with that being the case, code requests are only open to those who have media accounts on Terminals.

Who runs Terminals.io?

Terminals.io is owned and operated by Evolve PR, a leading public-relations and marketing agency focused on video games. You can find out more on our website, or interact with us on Facebook, Twitter, Twitch or YouTube.

Why do you ask me to connect my social networks?

First up: we never get access to passwords, nor the ability to post on your behalf, and your information is never shared with any third party unless you explicitly choose to share it. Second: it's only really something you need to do if you plan to apply for media status as connecting relevant social media accounts plays a vital role in the media approval process, and in helping developers and publishers stay up-to-date with your media outlet or channel's progress and growth. We get so many emails and requests for code from people who are impersonating others, in the hopes that they'll get code. We verify the credentials of every person in our media database, so you don't have to worry about someone ruining your image with a publisher or developer. At the same time, by connecting your networks, we can get an up-to-date view of your channel/outlet growth, which will make it easier for companies to see why they should give you games!

Why do you ask for personal information? Do I have to provide my mailing address and phone number?

Once again this is something you really only need to consider filling out if you're applying for media status. We collect personal information to help us confirm that you are who you say you are, and in some cases to ship you physical products (like swag or physical copies of games). While details like mailing address and phone number are not required, a more complete profile will help us confirm everything and more easily approve your account for media status. Having location info also ensures that we give you the best possible service: maybe there's an event in your city that we could invite you to; or perhaps we only have game codes for media/content creators in a specific country. Again, we do not share this info with anyone, unless you explicitly choose to share it. You have control.

My account hasn't been approved for media status yet. What's wrong?

Once you fill out the information in the required fields, you will be able to submit your account for approval. Once your account has been entered into our media status approval queue, Terminals.io/Evolve PR staff need to manually look over your account. It can take 3-5 business days for us to confirm those details, or even longer depending on how busy the queue is. Note that clicking the email link to confirm your email address and getting your media status request approved are two different things. If you want to make approval as quick and painless as possible, be sure to fill in your profile as completely as possible and connect your social media accounts and channels to verify that you do, indeed, own them. If you do not connect networks, or if it's not really easy to confirm your identity (such as seeing your email address on your YouTube channel), approval will take longer.

I requested a code for a game, but it still says the request is pending. What's wrong?

First off, we should say that requesting a code does not mean you will receive one. There are a lot of factors that come in to play when requesting a code, such as code availability and the amount of other code requests that are being facilitated. In some cases we open up code requests months before a game is actually available. If you're really worried, you can email the PR Contact listed on the relevant game page, but note that we may not respond to these emails in busy times. If you have placed a request and can see it on your profile as "Pending" then we have it, and you should be notified when we've been able to process your request.

How long does it take to get a code request approved?

It depends entirely on the game. Sometimes it can take minutes, and sometimes it can take weeks. If you're really worried, you can email the PR Contact listed on the relevant game page, but note that we may not respond to these emails in busy times. If you have placed a request and can see it on your profile as "Pending" then we have it, and you should be notified when we've been able to process your request. However, requesting a code is not a guarantee that you will receive one. Once again we'll note that code requests are only open to those with media status.

I have a question about a game. Who should I contact?

Each game page has a Contact button that you can use to contact the appropriate person for information / assistance with the product. There's also a "PR Contact" listed on each game page.

Can I request more than one code?

It depends on the game and the settings on the Terminal game page. In some cases the limit is set to 1 code, while others may allow you to select more. However, note that just because you CAN request 10 codes doesn't mean you should; if you ask for 10, there should be a very good reason you need them, or else we'll start getting a tad suspicious. Every developer or publisher will have different policies regarding requests for multiple codes.

I want to do a giveaway of codes for a game. Can you give me extras?

You can contact the PR representative responsible for a game to ask for giveaway codes, or place a request for multiple codes and add a note that they are for a giveaway. However, in most cases we do not have enough codes to fulfill demand, which makes it even more difficult to provide additional codes for giveaways. Every developer or publisher will have different policies regarding giveaways.

How do you decide who gets a code and who doesn't?

A lot of different factors determine who gets code for a particular game, and each developer or publisher will have its own processes and guidelines for determining code eligibility. Like it or not, the size of your audience--whether website traffic or subscriber numbers--plays a part, though it's not the only determining factor. Audience engagement may also play a role; if your channel has a million subscribers but only 400 people watch your videos, that's something a developer may consider. You should also endeavor to develop long-term relationships with developers and publishers you want to work with; if they don't know who you are, they may not provide code the first time you ask. If you request and receive multiple games but don't provide coverage (videos, reviews, etc.) you may also be passed over for future codes. And, well, if you email someone ten times asking about code, or if you're rude in communication, or if you've previously written a bunch of negative articles about a company's games, they might also get a tad annoyed and pass you over. It's complicated. So if we can offer some advice to increase the chances your requests for code will be approved, do this: build good relationships with developers and publishers, cover the games you receive, act professionally, don't fake your channel/audience numbers, and always aim to grow and improve your audience. Particularly if you have a small site or channel, you have to realize that a major website will almost always get a code before you do. Don't be upset! Endeavor to keep growing and give those developers/publishers reasons to like you.

Do I have to review, make a video about, or otherwise cover a game you give me?

Not necessarily, but it's certainly the hope. For most games, there are more requests than there are codes available; by taking a code and not covering the game, you're taking a potential opportunity away from someone else who might have really wanted to play and cover it themselves. However, we all realize things happen: you get sick, or you get really busy, or maybe you just didn't like a game and didn't want to crap on it in a review. It's okay to not cover a game you get. But if you do it routinely, you will likely get passed over in the future. When you've covered a game, help us out and click the "Submit Coverage" button to send it in!

Do I have to choose a Region when I request a code?

In most cases, you should choose a Region, though it's especially important in the case of console codes. PS4 codes, for example, are region-specific, so if you have a North American PS4 account, you must select the North American region, or else your request won't be fulfilled. In some cases the agency or developer responsible for a game may only have codes for a specific region, so you should always try to choose the region to make life easier for everyone.

How do I send you coverage of a game I received?

Each product page has a "Submit Coverage" button that you can use to submit coverage for a game. This helps the developer or publisher see that you've covered their game, and they can share it with their own audiences. It also means we won't email you asking, "Soooo... when are you going to cover this game?" Win-win for everyone!

I don't have a website, streaming channel or YouTube channel. Can I still sign up?

Definitely, that's what our Enthusiast accounts are for! However note that at this time, code requests on Terminals.io are only for those who've been approved for media status. That feature is not for the general public, Steam Group administrators or Curators, or anyone of that nature.

I just have a small channel/website. Can I still get games from you?

Yes, though be aware that you may not receive every game you request and you may not be approved for media status right away. Particularly if you're really just getting started, it may be tough to get games directly from developers and publishers. Don't fret; keep producing content, build an audience and a reputation, and eventually things will get easier!

Who has access to the information listed on my account? Can I control who sees it?

Your information is viewable only to the applicable Terminal owners whose Terminal you have joined, and/or the team at Terminals.io/Evolve PR. We do not share your information with third-parties. Ever. You always have control over your personal information, and can choose whom to share it with.

How long does media status approval take?

We do our best and try to assess all media status requests within 3-5 business days. A more complete profile will help expedite the approval process.

I'm interested in a game, but codes aren't available. What should I do?

Generally when code requests aren't open for a game, it's either because we don't have codes yet, or we've run out. If the game hasn't been released, it's likely that we just haven't opened code requests; you can click the "Watch" button to add a game to your Watch List, and you'll be notified when code requests open up. If the game's out and codes aren't available, it's unlikely we have any to spare. You can, however, contact the PR representative responsible for it via the game page, though chances are, if code requests are off, there's a reason!

My request for media status wasn't approved, what should I do now?

You will have received a message from Terminals.io/Evolve PR staff explaining why you weren't approved; you'll be able to reapply after 14 days have passed and if you've followed the instructions they provided you might then be approved. Remember: media status on Terminals.io is designed for active members of the media, as well as content creators (streaming and YouTube, for example); if you don't fit within those categories, then you are not eligible for media status.

What can Terminal do for me besides provide game keys?

Terminals.io can be used to discover new games, get press kits, see videos and screenshots, read news and more.

I'd like to have my account deleted and details removed from Terminals, how do I go about doing that?

You can have your account deleted by simply messaging the Terminals.io team and asking us to delete your account. You can contact us through Terminals’ internal messaging system, via the contact form which is linked at the bottom of the Terminals.io homepage, or by emailing us at [email protected] Upon receiving your message, we’ll promptly reach out to confirm your request (and confirm your identity if needed) and then once we receive that confirmation we delete the account. The process takes approximately 1-5 business days depending on how busy we are any given time. At present we do not offer the ability for users to manually delete their accounts, in order to prevent possible abuse of our system.

I changed outlets, what do I do?

If you've changed outlets or renamed your channel, simply visit your profile page and update the information. Your account will need to go through the media status approval process again--after all, you could get approved and then change your info to say you're Justin Trudeau. That doesn't mean you're actually him.

What is embargo/How can I access embargo information for a game I received?

An embargo is a specific time and date, before which you may NOT post coverage of the applicable game, and you can see embargo info by clicking on the Codes button (if you've received codes), or you will see it when you click to accept a code approval. You must agree to the stated embargo before receiving codes. If you post content before an embargo, you are "breaking embargo," which is a relatively serious offense in the gaming-media world. Breaking embargo may result in denial of future code requests, or at the very least a reluctance to provide you early review code in the future. Embargoes are in place to provide a level playing field for coverage and, in some cases, to protect industry secrets. Stick to them.

Is there a limit to how many games I can request?

No! Request as many game codes as you'd like, but remember that you are expected to cover most of them. If you can't provide coverage in a timely manner, don't request the code.

Media Status
What benefits does media status provide?

Having media status on Terminals is the thing that allows you to request codes for the games on our service. It also provides you with the ability to contact the PR rep for any given game should you have questions about it. Lastly, having media status will make it easier for you to book appointments with our clients during major shows such as PAX or E3.

I was approved for media status, what’s expected of me?

Nothing more than what you already do to be absolutely honest. Just keep creating content and using the codes and information we give you responsibly, and we’ll be sympatico. For a better idea of what we’re talking about, you can read this blog post by one of our PR reps that really breaks down what it means to be media and what we expect from those who claim the title.

Aside from what’s listed here, does anything else affect my Media Status request?

We’ve tried to list everything here that we consider when making these decisions, but it’s not a cold mathematical equation. When you apply for media status, it’s our staff who consider the request and decide if you qualify, and they’re only human. That said, while mistakes can happen and there will be some slight natural variance between the different members of our approvals team, we do try to keep these decisions as consistent as possible across our whole user base.

Do I have to meet all of the criteria listed here to get media status?

No, what’s listed here are simply the different factors we consider when deciding Media Status. Obviously the more of these parameters you meet or exceed, the better chance you have of getting Media Status, but you don’t necessarily need to meet every single quota to get in.

My friend was approved for media status but I was denied and they have lower numbers than I do. What’s going on?

While numbers are important, they are not the sole factor in determining media status. We also consider frequency of content, subject matter, social media activity, and a number of other factors when making the decision to approve someone as media. Our requirements for media status have also changed over time, and it is possible that your friend was approved at an earlier date when those standards were still in flux. That said, we periodically reevaluate accounts and it is possible for someone to lose media status if they no longer meet the criteria.

Media Status Requirements
Your channel/outlet has to reach and maintain a certain level of audience.

If you’re applying under a website or blog then your outlet will need to receive a minimum of 1000 estimated visits per month as judged by SimilarWeb. If you’re applying under a YouTube, Twitch, or Facebook Gaming channels then you’ll need to have a minimum of 500 Subscribers or Followers, 5000+ views on your channel as a whole, and/or 50-100+ average views on your videos. Some level of presence on social media is also preferred and any accounts you connect to your Terminals profile are looked at during Media Status consideration.

Your channel/outlet has been in operation for at least two months.

Everyone has to start somewhere and no one begins with a legacy of coverage behind them, but we need to see a little starting commitment to assuage any worries. Having a couple months of content under your belt lets us know that your outlet/channel isn’t likely to just disappear after we’ve given you a review code.

Your channel/outlet needs to keep up a nominal level of technical/production quality.

Every outlet/channel is different, and will have its own voice and sense of style, but there are some basic things that objectively make some come off better than others. For a website this can include ensuring that articles are free of spelling errors, use proper grammar, and have consistent and readable formatting. For a YouTube or Twitch channel, this can mean having custom art assets, a properly fleshed out channel profile, and videos/streams that are well presented with clear audio and video. Things such as good editing (of both the video and text variety), making sure your content is original and unique, and ensuring that your archive of content is well organized can count as well, but in general it just means presenting your work as clearly and cleanly as possible.

You are 13+ years of age, or have permission from a parent or guardian to use Terminals.

The reason for this rather boilerplate requirement is two-fold. The first is that we host all manner of games on Terminals, some of which are intended for mature audiences. The second is that gaining media status entails a responsibility to at least attempt to create coverage for any games received through our service. That said, if you are under 13, you can have your parent or guardian contact us at [email protected] and with his or her okay we’ll try to work things out.

Your outlet/channel needs to have content published on weekly basis at a minimum.

We need to see some degree of regular activity in order to be assured that any games we send your way have a chance of being covered in a timely manner, and won’t simply disappear into the ether. This means we expect one article/video a week to be published on your outlet/channel at a minimum. We do understand that for some of our users, such as freelancers, that’s not always a possibility; in those cases we expect to see at least one article/video to go up somewhere under your name (or attributed to you in some way) each month.

If you’re applying under a website, it needs to have its own domain and hosting.

To clarify, this means you have paid for your domain and the hosting needed to keep it live (unless you own your own server) via a service such as Bluehost or Hostgator. This does not include free blogs built and hosted on sites such as Wordpress.com, Tumblr, Blogspot, or Wix. We do this to prevent abuse of our system, because while blogs from those services are easy to create, it’s hard to prove their traffic metrics and discern who actually owns/represents them.

Your email address needs to be verified in our system.

When you sign up for Terminals, you’ll receive an email asking you to confirm your email address by clicking a link. You’ll need to complete this process for us to consider your account for media status, as it allows us to verify that your email is legitimate and you are who you say you are. If you never received this email (and be sure to check your spam folder as it can end up in there) you can have it re-sent by clicking the red banner at the top of the Terminals homepage that will appear if your email is unverified.

You need to have a good record of behaviour on Terminals.

We’re not expecting you to cover every game or submit every scrap of coverage you produce around a title, but we are expecting you to treat Terminals and the people who work on it with respect. This means keeping your key requests reasonable and using what keys you do get for work purposes. It also means not harassing any of the developers, PR reps, or Terminals staff you may interact with on Terminals. This can also apply to your general behaviour as a publication, as we reserve the right to remove media status from any outlets or channels found to doing things such as plagiarizing content or reselling keys received for review purposes.

Have a question? Read through our FAQ for answers to common questions, and if you have a question that isn't answered here, send us a message!

© 2015-2021 Terminals Technology, Inc. All rights reserved.

Developed with by these humans.