Anodyne Developer Turns Piracy Into PR

Anodyne Developer Turns Piracy Into PR


One of the developers of the indie game Anodyne put his money where his mouth is by posting codes for the game on The Pirate Bay and asking users to upvote it on Steam Greenlight.

Piracy is inevitable, so they say, and that leaves developers with three options: ignore it, fight it or make the best of it. When Sean Hogan, one of the two people behind the indie adventure Anodyne, learned that the game was floating around on The Pirate Bay, he decided to wholeheartedly embrace the third option by trying to rally the site's community behind the game.

"It's neat that Anodyne's here and I'm glad that means more people can play it, though of course we'd love it if you bought the game!" he wrote in a torrent comment. "We're tryin' to get Greenlit on Steam so we'd really appreciate it if you and your friends gave us an upvote... Most importantly let us know what you think of the game and if you like it or if it fills you with a burning rage!" At the end of the message, Hogan took things a step further by posting a half-dozen codes for free copies of the game on Desura.

"Piracy is inevitable so it's better to embrace it - plus, it gives lots of people who couldn't normally afford the game the opportunity to play it - and I think when you're a small group of developers (only my friend Jon and I made Anodyne), it's better to have lots of people able to experience your game," he explained in a separate post on Reddit. "We hope enough people will like it and the word will get out, eventually allowing us to get onto Steam, which then lets more people see and play Anodyne!"

Hogan isn't the first indie developer to appeal to The Pirate Bay's better nature: Jonatan Soderstrom did something similar when Hotline Miami hit the torrents last year, saying he wanted people to play the game "no mater how they got hold of it," although he drew the line at actually giving the game away himself.

Source: Reddit


I'm no pirate, but just for that I decided to go back and upvote this game on Greenlight.

I went through every single Steam Greenlight game and actually downvoted it earlier. But I changed it to an upvote and I plan to buy it just for this. Besides, I might have judged too hastily on this one.

It worked out with McPixel, so why not?

If you guys ever try a kickstarter, I have no doubts you'll reach your goals after this. Anodyne deserves an Anodyme.

Well good for you sir! Just an FYI though I know at least a dozen people who only pirate games to see if they like them because THERE IS NO DEMO. Nothing like throwing money at a game only to find out it is terrible. You might kill most of that piracy issue if there was A DEMO.

Remember demos people? Those wonderful things that no game would be caught dead without? Hell the first ID titles gave the entire first episode of the game to examine for free.

Kickass developer!
Got no time and a backlog of 30+ games, but if I'd have the time I'd play and vote for this.

Hope it goes well for you!!!

Well, it seems to be working. Good on them.


Actually, I hated demos.

OT Well, this is a switch. They'll save a buttload of cash normally used to protect themselves by, instead, opening up deals with the people who could probably open them up like a can of tuna anyway. In short, a progressive notion of not trying to cheat anybody and therefore eliminating even the need FOR piracy.

Parlay, anyone?

... I'm tempted to throw money for this now. What's the game about? It's pretty appealing to me at this point with that retro aesthetic that's going on.

Good on the guy for realizing that piracy could be used as spreading news, and I hope that he gets the money. I really like this guy now...

Hi this is Sean! There is a demo on our website, or direct from here . cheers!

*ahem* let me put on my hipster glasses to say,

I up voted it BEFORE it was cool

Hi this is Sean! There is a demo on our website, or direct from here . cheers!

So you registered on the escapist just to answer the raging "no demo" post?
You sir are awesome.

This is the first time i find people embracing the piracy that actually seem genuine (ignoring the small time local actors using local piracy website as advertisement for thier movies)

This is awesome on so many levels I can't even express it. I'm gonna go play the demo, and if I like it, I'll buy it. Also glad he mentions that people not having any money is a cause of piracy. It's all well and good to assume all pirates are assholes, but I have met quite a few who simply don't have another choice. Doesn't make it right, but it does make it grey.


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