Pirating Game Dev Tycoon Dooms Players to be Ruined By Piracy

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SecondPrize:

phoenix352:

SecondPrize:

Are you kidding? I don't have calculations. I'm talking about sales figures. Your pirate who goes on to buy the game adds 1 to the total sales figure. He is accounted for. I'm not sure where you came up with the idea that my 'calculations' would not account for this. My pirate who would have purchased the game if not for piracy does not add 1 to the sales figure. We agreed that developers use these sales figures in their relations with publishers. Therefore, the person who pirates the game when he would have purchased it instead is doing harm to the developer in not adding to the sales figure. He would have purchased it. He did not because piracy exists. The developer has a weaker position in their next negotiation because of this person.

when i say calculations i mean the sales figures.
my pirate as i stated is indeed counted as a sales figure BUT he also pirated the game beforehand meaning he is also a "lost sale" based on your rules.

so how can 1 person then be both a sale figure and a lost sale figure?
that's the pickle with that one.

i agree that the person who would have bought a copy if the option of piracy wasn't available would do harm to the dev but again you don't know that he would have.
there is no way to determine that information.
saying that he harms the dev is hypothetical because you need to assume that he otherwise would of bought it.
meaning anyone that pirates is completely irrelevant to any sales figures period.

if a developer chooses to calculate lost sales from piracy along side the actual sales figures he ends up basing it on estimates and nothing else so there can be no argument made that piracy affected his negotiations.
because in our current reality you cant prove that a pirate would buy that game if piracy wasn't a thing.
so the end figures are just lies.

that's the whole overarching point its simply a fact that piracy does no harm.

I don't consider every instance of piracy a lost sale. I wouldn't count the guy who bought a copy after designing his own piracy demo plan as a sale that should have happened had he wound up not making the purchase in the end. All I'm saying is there are people who would purchase games but do not because they are available through piracy. This is separate from trying it out first or sticking it to publishers or any of that stuff. These are sales that would have happened had the game not been cracked at distributed. Call them lost sales if you like, but while not every instance of piracy is a lost sale, there are sales that get lost in the mix. Without even doing anything like calculating lost sales, developers are harmed because their final sales numbers are not as high as they would have been and they rely on those numbers. You're right that we can't put a number to them. I'm not saying devs should find some way to account for them on top of actual sales figures, but we have to admit that this happens simply based on our consuming like locusts nature as gamers.

Now we could argue that piracy does no net harm because you can eliminate the people who were never going to buy a game and compare sales gained because of word of mouth or do-it-yourself demoing resulting in a sale and those lost by people who would have purchased if they couldn't pirate, but we don't really have those numbers so it'll be speculation. Again, I'm just saying if there is one person who would have purchased a title and doesn't, the absence of his presence in sales figures does do a bit of damage.

The funny thing is, while I won't call for it in these forums, I won't be upset when a crack of the 'real' game dev tycoon comes out because this stinks of a PR stunt which, while brilliant, is more than a little hypocritical to me because as far as I can tell these two guys are straight ripping off kairosoft and their Game Dev Story.

Now with that i can agree , sure on an individual level piracy does some harm but on a large scale that number is just minuscule as to what devs / publishers depict it to be.
its so blown out of proportion and demonized to create this "piracy" entity that dooms games and developers.
bad games and bad business decisions do that, piracy does not.

and that's my problem with the whole ordeal.
piracy is not the coming of the apocalypse it does its small impact but it also regulates itself by giving all that free publicity to that product balancing that damage out.

now since like we established there are no hard numbers for and against piracy i cant say that the balance of damage to free advertising is tipped to any side.

so the only logical assumption to take away for these arguments is that piracy sure logically does damage but it also helps and since we cant prove either side its just completely irrelevant.

and that's my case for piracy, its the ol' innocent until proven wrong type of deal.
i just don't agree with the amount of flack and attention this gets based on assumptions.

Piracy does not hurt businesses. A pirated game is not a lost sale, because the one pirating often would not have spent that money in the first place. I don't pirate, especially not from an indie dev, but this idea that a company can be harmed by a loss in entirely theoretical money is ridiculous. Its not like shoplifting, when you download something, you are not depriving the manufacturer of an object they then have to replace.

Until all the hyperbole dies down, I really cannot take the 'piracy issue' seriously.

galdon2004:
Piracy does not hurt businesses. A pirated game is not a lost sale, because the one pirating often would not have spent that money in the first place. I don't pirate, especially not from an indie dev, but this idea that a company can be harmed by a loss in entirely theoretical money is ridiculous. Its not like shoplifting, when you download something, you are not depriving the manufacturer of an object they then have to replace.

Until all the hyperbole dies down, I really cannot take the 'piracy issue' seriously.

So by your reasoning, it's simply "acting outside the law by deciding you're entitled to content without having to pay for it" for some reason. You're depriving the content producer of the money that THEY'RE entitled to by producing and distributing content.

Until you stop rationalizing crime, I really cannot take your argument seriously.

Bigfish Games should implement this DRM. Whenever I'm looking for a walkthrough or review for one of their games, Google turns up a ton of torrent sites.

I can understand downloading vaporware & out-of-print games that are 10 or more years older that a company is no longer making any money off of, especially if the console is prone to breaking or certain games were released in limited amounts & cartridges are rare to the point of costing hundreds. But when a game costs $7 & isn't even 5 years old, there's absolutely no excuse.

Indie games are so cheap, that if I really like the game & they have a donate button, I give them an extra $5-$15.

& if any of you like oldschool RPGs, go check out Amaranth Games. Aveyond 3 was awesome.

TopazFusion:
It would be easy to get around it though. In the sim, just make all your games "always online". That'll stop the pirates!

Your Dev PR Score is: ELECTRONIC ARTS.

MrDumpkins:
I agree that they charge over the ass for this kind of content, but where I don't agree is just playing it anyways. That's like saying I want a good fancy meal, but I don't think it's worth the money, so instead of just going somewhere else I'm just going to dine and dash. Regardless of whether it's good or bad food, It's their fault they weren't charging less. If they were, I would have totally paid for it.

If they have a bad pricing model then just don't buy their content. But don't go and download it anyways. All that does is create the illusion for these big companies that people would totally buy their game if they couldn't get it for free.

Except that the analogy you gave here is flawed.

Piracy is more like deciding that the local restaurant charges too much for its pasta dishes, so you download the recipe to their pasta online and start giving it away to all your friends so they can make it at home.

You're not "stealing" their pasta, as a stolen product implies that the company lost physical resources to you (they didn't) and that the product you stole is no longer accessible to other people who might have paid for it (it still is). It's more accurate to state that you've copied their product, because it involved taking their model and creating a duplicate which you then distributed to other people to duplicate for themselves.

Now whether or not you think that should also be illegal, that's another matter entirely. Technically, anything under copyright being duplicated and distributed without the owner's say-so is also illegal, so piracy would more adequately fall under "violation of copyright" (which it clearly is) than "theft" (which it clearly isn't).

So let's be intellectually honest about the "crime" being committed here, first and foremost. It's not theft, it's copyright violation. You didn't steal anything, you just violated the company's copyright by copying and distributing their product without their consent.

Pirates tend to spend more money than 'legitimate customers' on whatever media form they steal from.

I do think this is funny though, that forum post is priceless.

Mycroft Holmes:
Pirates tend to spend more money than 'legitimate customers' on whatever media form they steal from.

I do think this is funny though, that forum post is priceless.

Massive "CITATION NEEDED" stamp goes here.

loll got 'em...

but I do like the guy's message/response to his audience. it's not being smug or anything just straightforward

ResonanceSD:

Mycroft Holmes:
Pirates tend to spend more money than 'legitimate customers' on whatever media form they steal from.

I do think this is funny though, that forum post is priceless.

Massive "CITATION NEEDED" stamp goes here.

Just google it...

http://torrentfreak.com/file-sharers-buy-30-more-music-than-non-p2p-peers-121015/

There is a citation for you though, people who pirate stuff generally pirate in addition to massive expenditure on that stuff, not instead of spending money.

ResonanceSD:
[quote="galdon2004" post="7.406858.16954492"]Snip

Apparently people who work in the game industry (like myself) have adapted to go without food, water, money for bills or to support their families? Because hay Piracy hurts no one right, not like anyones paycheck is riding on a product selling. And how dare them ask for money from something that supposed to be ART!!! The nerve of those bastards.... Don't they know that art has always existed without patrons or (customers) ...well excluding like the last 800+ years (which actually would be closer to like 4000+ but hey who's counting) who likes, Rococo, baroque, classicism, neo classicism, postmodernism, Dadaism, futurism, ect ect ... anyways those were all decedent, frivolous, and unnecessary.-Especially the Dadaist

Its hilarious to see people pull the ART card when referring to piracy, clearly they have absolutely no knowledge of Art history.

ResonanceSD - You're awesome keep fighting the good fight.

Others that think piracy hurts no one- How about not being a straight up dick to Us working in the industry, its bad enough its done in the first place, and then you go tell everyone that their horrible for asking to be paid for their work. In what way can you honestly think its right to tell people you don't give 2 shits about their work, and then go take off with it.

ResonanceSD:

Massive "CITATION NEEDED" stamp goes here.

I dunno, some guy said it in another thread and it supported my argument, therefore it must be true. I heard it on the internet!

http://www.ultimate-guitar.com/news/industry_news/riaa_pirates_spend_more_on_music.html

The RIAA(which hates pirates) says that music pirates spend up to 30% more on music than non-pirates. It's pretty easy to extrapolate this statistical principle to other pirates.

bug_of_war:

I find most pirates to have no excuse all round, regardless of it being an indie game, heavy DRM, or sticking it to a publisher. You are still technically stealing something that someone spent time on and that to me makes the whole, "Oh but it was for this reason" a terrible excuse. If I beat a woman, but say, "She was pregnant with my child and wouldn't get an abortion" I'm still an asshole who deserves to go to gaol. If I steal a frying pan, but say it's because I need something to cook my food, I'm still going to be punished via some form of recompense to the store/owner.

There is no reason to pirate a game. If you have a computer, you can afford to spend money on one game per month or one game per 2 months. I've only ever heard one viable excuse for piracy, and even then it's still not a good excuse (See Extra Credits Piracy episode).

So yeah, there is practically no excuse for piracy.

I saw that episode, and the example you're talking about is pirating a game that you simply can't buy because it's not available at all, e.g. ancient games that the company got bored of selling, or ones that aren't available in your country (NOT counting localization or shop stocking issues). In my opinion, that's fine: if a company isn't even giving you the option of purchasing a game legitimately, then it's okay to pirate the game.
Of course, even this rationalization gets iffy when the company pulls out the option of purchasing classic titles (e.g. Nintendo's eShop letting you buy SNES or GBA titles) or when they make HD remakes.

Otherwise, I agree. Firstly, a game worth playing is a game worth buying, and telling someone their 'art' isn't worth anything just because you don't agree with the price tag is extremely insulting and obnoxious. Surely you people have jobs, what if your employers suddenly told you you're not going to be paid for a year's work because they wouldn't have hired you anyway? Yes I think that's a valid comparison, because it takes a LOT of effort and time to make a game, no I'm not going to argue about the semantics about employer contracts.

Secondly, if you honestly can't afford $5 for a steam sale or even one whole cent for a Humble Indie bundle (no, I don't want to argue about whether one cent sales hurt HIB) each month, then sell your fucking console/computer and get another job because you have bigger issues than finding something to do during your spare time. Oh, but you're a student? Doesn't matter. Even if your study/work schedule somehow gives you no time to scrape up enough cash to buy a chocolate bar, there are PLENTY of legitimate, entertaining gaming options for anyone with a $0 game budget. Whatever happened to free browser based game websites? (I STILL play games at Newgrounds.com, yay free ad for them) What about undeniably excellent F2P titles like League of Legends or Team Fortress 2, to name a few?

Thirdly, I still don't buy the whole 'Well I'll pay for it when i get the cash/ if I think that it's good enough afterwards' excuse. LOOK at that percentage rate. Maybe some people were kind enough to buy the game afterwards, but am I really expected to believe that a good portion of the other 93.4 percent bought the game after their trial run? (Or would have if the hacked version wasn't trolling them, or if it was of good quality blah de fucking blah) When the legit game sale percentage doesn't even reach double digits, don't fucking lecture me about the goodwill of pirates.

Seriously guys, watch that video bug_of_war suggested. Other than obnoxious/buggy DRM and the aforementioned Sold-Out-Forever / Not-Available-Ever games, the excuses pirates make over what is essentially theft just borders on snobbery and self-serving entitlement.

Mid Boss:
Ahhh I love the piracy defense attempts on subjects like this.

Think I'll go pirate a car. Wasn't going to buy it so it's not a lost sale! People seeing me driving it will want one themselves. I'm sure the police will understand perfectly that I didn't actually steal the car I stole and, in fact, did it to promote the model!

Gotta love how the completely self serving "logic" breaks down into utterly baffling stupidity when applied to anything but video games.

Is it wrong that I hate you for so perfectly summing up my entire statement?

As a final note, am I the only one who noticed the name of the company on the screenshot?

Tried the demo as concept intrigued me and then got the game, so +1 sale from me. For 8$ the price was more then reasonable.

Infernal Lawyer:

I saw that episode, and the example you're talking about is pirating a game that you simply can't buy because it's not available at all, e.g. ancient games that the company got bored of selling, or ones that aren't available in your country (NOT counting localization or shop stocking issues). In my opinion, that's fine: if a company isn't even giving you the option of purchasing a game legitimately, then it's okay to pirate the game.
Of course, even this rationalization gets iffy when the company pulls out the option of purchasing classic titles (e.g. Nintendo's eShop letting you buy SNES or GBA titles) or when they make HD remakes.

Otherwise, I agree. Firstly, a game worth playing is a game worth buying, and telling someone their 'art' isn't worth anything just because you don't agree with the price tag is extremely insulting and obnoxious. Surely you people have jobs, what if your employers suddenly told you you're not going to be paid for a year's work because they wouldn't have hired you anyway? Yes I think that's a valid comparison, because it takes a LOT of effort and time to make a game, no I'm not going to argue about the semantics about employer contracts.

Secondly, if you honestly can't afford $5 for a steam sale or even one whole cent for a Humble Indie bundle (no, I don't want to argue about whether one cent sales hurt HIB) each month, then sell your fucking console/computer and get another job because you have bigger issues than finding something to do during your spare time. Oh, but you're a student? Doesn't matter. Even if your study/work schedule somehow gives you no time to scrape up enough cash to buy a chocolate bar, there are PLENTY of legitimate, entertaining gaming options for anyone with a $0 game budget. Whatever happened to free browser based game websites? (I STILL play games at Newgrounds.com, yay free ad for them) What about undeniably excellent F2P titles like League of Legends or Team Fortress 2, to name a few?

Thirdly, I still don't buy the whole 'Well I'll pay for it when i get the cash/ if I think that it's good enough afterwards' excuse. LOOK at that percentage rate. Maybe some people were kind enough to buy the game afterwards, but am I really expected to believe that a good portion of the other 93.4 percent bought the game after their trial run? (Or would have if the hacked version wasn't trolling them, or if it was of good quality blah de fucking blah) When the legit game sale percentage doesn't even reach double digits, don't fucking lecture me about the goodwill of pirates.

Seriously guys, watch that video bug_of_war suggested. Other than obnoxious/buggy DRM and the aforementioned Sold-Out-Forever / Not-Available-Ever games, the excuses pirates make over what is essentially theft just borders on snobbery and self-serving entitlement.

I now feel as though it's my obligation to post the link seeing as how you're backing me on this subject.

Extra Credits on Piracy: http://www.penny-arcade.com/patv/episode/piracy

It's only 7 minutes long, good watch too.

blackrave:

So while piracy doesn't provide immediate income for developers, it is important source of games for new gamers who eventually will convert to paying customer

Your history while vaguely interesting is all anecdotal evidence and does not support your "conclusion" as quoted above.

Holythirteen:

Entitled:

If I would just want free stuff, I alone could get it all right now illegally, while you tools keep obeyin' the law and paying for it.

Oh good direct insults. I see, you do it because you can. If I do a search will I find you complaining about always-online DRM somewhere? That is the direct consequence of your way of thinking. WE ARE PAYING FOR YOU. And then you turn around and use it as justification for your theft. Awesome.

Notice the condition clause at the beginning of my sentence.

I'm already reacting to your own hypothesis, implying that I just want free stuff for myself, describing what I WOULD do and how I would think if I would be like that.

Despise me all you want for my opinion on exactly how far artist rights should extend and where public rights should begin, but at least don't put out-of-context hypothetical lines into my mouth.

Holythirteen:
Did you know LittleBigPlanet had an included level editor for players to contribute their own levels? Not one of those levels was as fun as the ones included on the game disc itself. Why would I want to pay for the white-noise contributions of thousands of random, unaccountable people when I could pay professionals for top-tier work, withholding my money if I start to dislike their efforts?

I obviously disagree with that assertion, as my favorite game from last year was entirely freeware amateur project, a Visual Novel with several man/years put into it (Katawa Shoujo), and my other favorite 2012 game, that I eventually bought, I'm still playing that because of it's many incredibly elaborate map conversion mods with high production values. (Crusader Kings II).

Holythirteen:
Like I said before, if people want to contribute their own media why do they need to take characters and worlds that others have already created?

I don't know, why did Christopher Nolan, J.J. Abrams, Peter Jeckson, or Joss Whedon, contribute their media while taking others' already existing universes and characters?

Of course, that's different, because they sucked enough corporate cock to get the legal approval to their work. I'm just pointing out that you are not truly criticising why copyright infringing works are artistically bankrupt or creatively lacking, just re-stating the fact that they are illegal.

Holythirteen:
What does reasonably mean? They own their ip, if its not worth the asking price, don't buy it. All these vague socialist justifications are getting old.

"Reasonably" means already existing mediums and genres can continue to exist without going bankrupt. For example I would accept a system that means that COD would get half the profit that it gets now, but not one where graphically realistic FPS games can't be afforded at all.

And there is nothing capitalistic about the government deciding that artists need to get as much profits as they do now, and keeping all regulations in line, and writing new ones, and constantly extending copyright, for the sake of subsidiarizing them. The most socialist thing I have written in this thread, is the above paragraph where are expressed my belief that some IP should still be kept for the sake of subsidiarizing at least major genres.

A true libertarian would have said "If some genres can't exist without government intervention at all, let 'em fail. Let the market find which ones can profit just from selling actual property, and from services asking for a salary before doing the work, instead of granting them extra rights because as "useful arts" they are picked as pre-determined winners"

Holythirteen:
That's the label you get when you start saying that my stuff should belong to the state. Why do you think my stuff should belong to everyone? If I make my own video game without copyright protection, a big company WILL take my works and make their own version because they can.

Your problem is entirely conceptual. You keep describing the fact that IP holders can dictate exactly how individuals are non-commercially using published data, as them having "Stuff", and the idea of me wanting them to lose this right as "taking away stuff".

To which, I've already wrote an analogy in this thread. Here is a shorter version: Let's say, that the Betamax case of 1984, where Sony argued in front of courts that copying TV movies for time-shifting purposes is piracy, ended up the other way.

Now, in 2013, how would you even BEGIN to claim that it would be better if that particular right would stay at the public? After decades of tradition, everyone would have just gotten used to that right "belonging to Sony", and their claim of profiting from disc rents of last night's movie would be part of their ordinary incomes. (Whether or not that's a meaningful sum, the court decreed that it is).

By your own logic, people keeping illegal VHSes would be "thiefs", because the right to tell when you watch your TV shows is Sony's Intellectual Property, it's their "stuff", so anyone arguing against it would be a commie Robin Hood wanting to "take away stuff from them and distribute it among the people".

Let's at least agree, that IP is not "stuff" that inherently belongs to someone or someone else as an object. It's a regulation, and many of it's details were just made up in the past decades, (personal copying wasn't an issue before tape rrecorders). We are making it up as we go along, based on how much extra market control seems worth exactly how much controlling of personal actions.

Even if you disagree with me about the conclusion, that file-sharing, just like timeshifting, should belong to the people, at least try to give explanations of economic necessity (though I will disagree with those, obviously), instead of turning the copyright tradition made up in the past decades into some unarguable axiom of "stuff belongs to it's owner", because IP is not true ownership.

Holythirteen:
If I make my own video game without copyright protection, a big company WILL take my works and make their own version because they can.

So far, I have argued in favor of users directly copying data non-commercial personal use, and of creators productively copying larger elements of existing works, on a more opened interpretation of Fair Use.

But I would agree that publishers shouldn't just directly burn a copy of their competitors' games and sell it as their own.

Holythirteen:
You keep telling yourself that piracy is some sort of foundation of a new system where everybody owns everything and everything is more awesome because of it when in truth you have no idea how this magical system is supposed to ACTUALLY WORK. I can tell you that it won't, the humble indie bundle was 1 cent and people STILL pirated it. Justify that to me.

And then the indie bundle was a huge success earning hundreds of thousands of dollars for a handful of individuals. The economic problem here is?

There are also plenty of people who read wikipedia without donating. Things are still going along.

(on a side note, I don't see much difference between 1 cent and 0 cent, obviously both tried to avoid payment and should be considered freeloaders, regardless of the letter of the law says. The latter group is only different in that maybe they didn't have a paypal account, or any bank account at all. Kids, foreigners, or just people who were more comfortable uusing piratebay than going though the trouble o paying 1 cent and still effectively being a pirate.)

Not sure if it was mentioned yet, but I think it's funny that he says they're working hard making games when this is practically a clone of Game Dev Story by Kairosoft. I mean there's bound to be differences but I just see a lot of similarities that can't be accidental.

Bravo though on the anti-piracy measures, this kind of soft sabotage is a lot more effective against the passive pirate.

Edit: Just checked their forums and I guess they did bring up Kairosoft. Well, at least they're honest about their inspiration.

Not sure if mention yet but:

Patrick Klug:

When I was younger, downloading illegal copies was practically normal but this was mostly because global game distribution was in its infancy." He says that the wide availability of the game online, as well as the fact that it has a free demo and comes with no DRM means that gamers these days have no excuse for pirating the game.

Try and justify it however you want Mr. Klug but piracy is still piracy tsk, tsk, tsk.

capthca: Head Case

Ok now I know captcha is just insulting me.

bug_of_war:

Infernal Lawyer:

SnippyMcSnipped

I now feel as though it's my obligation to post the link seeing as how you're backing me on this subject.

Extra Credits on Piracy: http://www.penny-arcade.com/patv/episode/piracy

It's only 7 minutes long, good watch too.

Stupid lazy me for not doing that in the first place :( Thanks for making an actual effort to link it up.

Plus, about the original topic... this is what DRM should be replaced with (such an ugly broad term). Not harmful to paying customers like 'fuck off until you have internets... oh wait, now our servers are down, ON LAUNCH DAY, too bad for you', not easily picked up by pirates (crackers or downloaders) like always online or even one-time online validations. Hell, making a separate booby-trapped version even means you won't even accidentally wreck a paying customer's experience from a false positive. Plus, it makes for comedy gold when they go bitching to the forums (ZOMFG PIRATES ARE RUINING MY GAME! OH THE HUMANITY AND LACK OF IRONY!).
Of course, it needs to be obvious when you get to the pirate trolling part, as someone commented about how Titan's Quest was 'only' buggy in the booby trapped version, so it made it look like the 'real' game was shit rather than making a statement. Here's an idea... Why not make a booby trapped version of your game where you are constantly instagibbed by a pirate themed enemy that restricts your progress to the rest of the game, then replaces the Game Over music with that annoying pirate song that went viral?

Akalabeth:

Your history while vaguely interesting is all anecdotal evidence and does not support your "conclusion" as quoted above.

Why not?
From all the things I have observed in previous years, I came to conclusion that it is in developers best interest to keep fan base as large as possible, even if not all of them buys their games in legitimate way (or at all)
There is only gain and nothing to lost
Lets take for example person who have no disposable income and who can barely afford internet
There are 2 options when it comes to pay-to-play titles
A) Person pirates the game
B) Person does not pirates it
In B case person never plays the game and can't say anything good or bad about it, and developers do not get any money from this person
In A case person plays the game, and there are 2 options again
A1) Person likes the game
A2) Person doesn't like the game
A2 is the worst possible scenario for developer- not only they won't get any money, but also this person may say unflattery things about this game when sharing with his/her friends.
A1 can bring some income for developers and slightly increase fanbase. Person who liked the game most probably will start to follow this developer on their website and suggest this game to other friends, some of whom most probably will be able to buy the game. Also if developer releases sequel to the game this person liked, person's financial state by the time of release of the sequel may improve and he/she will buy the sequel and if nostalgia kicks in also first game.
Am I only one to whom beneficial aspect of piracy is obvious?

If the level of simulator was deep enough it would allow the player to respond to piracy by adding asshole always online dmm, and making snarky fake pirated versions.

wulf3n:
Not sure if mention yet but:

Patrick Klug:

When I was younger, downloading illegal copies was practically normal but this was mostly because global game distribution was in its infancy." He says that the wide availability of the game online, as well as the fact that it has a free demo and comes with no DRM means that gamers these days have no excuse for pirating the game.

Try and justify it however you want Mr. Klug but piracy is still piracy tsk, tsk, tsk.

capthca: Head Case

Ok now I know captcha is just insulting me.

His game isnt even exactly that easy to find, I searched every online seller from Steam to Origin and everything inbetween and they didnt carry it, I googled his game, his games website is not even in the top 5 results for me. Its really no surprise people find piracy is easier than trying to hunt it down.

Edit: I would be interested to see how much piracy there would be if it was actually "Widely available online" as he claimed

Infernal Lawyer:

Stupid lazy me for not doing that in the first place :( Thanks for making an actual effort to link it up.

Plus, about the original topic... this is what DRM should be replaced with (such an ugly broad term). Not harmful to paying customers like 'fuck off until you have internets... oh wait, now our servers are down, ON LAUNCH DAY, too bad for you', not easily picked up by pirates (crackers or downloaders) like always online or even one-time online validations. Hell, making a separate booby-trapped version even means you won't even accidentally wreck a paying customer's experience from a false positive. Plus, it makes for comedy gold when they go bitching to the forums (ZOMFG PIRATES ARE RUINING MY GAME! OH THE HUMANITY AND LACK OF IRONY!).
Of course, it needs to be obvious when you get to the pirate trolling part, as someone commented about how Titan's Quest was 'only' buggy in the booby trapped version, so it made it look like the 'real' game was shit rather than making a statement. Here's an idea... Why not make a booby trapped version of your game where you are constantly instagibbed by a pirate themed enemy that restricts your progress to the rest of the game, then replaces the Game Over music with that annoying pirate song that went viral?

I think that idea is good, I have nothing against DRM (mainly because I rarely play games on my computer) but it does seem to be a method that needs vast improving or to be ditched entirely. While I can't possibly know the inner workings of the game industry or how programming works, I've always thought that if they could somehow program something into a game that will be triggered when someone cracks the game and thus just wipes all files would be a great pirate deterrent. In theory it would deter the people who crack the games as they would lose the files also, thus killing the problem at the source. I know it's probably farfetched technology I am talking about, but couldn't something to a similar effect be achieved? For a long time flying seemed impossible, as did recording sound and pictures, so why not this type of tech? I dunno...I don't know much about the whole workings of game development and the technology currently available and it's uses, but it's just one idea asking to be explored.

ResonanceSD:

galdon2004:
Piracy does not hurt businesses. A pirated game is not a lost sale, because the one pirating often would not have spent that money in the first place. I don't pirate, especially not from an indie dev, but this idea that a company can be harmed by a loss in entirely theoretical money is ridiculous. Its not like shoplifting, when you download something, you are not depriving the manufacturer of an object they then have to replace.

Until all the hyperbole dies down, I really cannot take the 'piracy issue' seriously.

So by your reasoning, it's simply "acting outside the law by deciding you're entitled to content without having to pay for it" for some reason. You're depriving the content producer of the money that THEY'RE entitled to by producing and distributing content.

Until you stop rationalizing crime, I really cannot take your argument seriously.

Pirating a game does no more damage to a business than browsing the internet with adblocker on. I am not encouraging breaking the law; I'm just saying it does not cause actual harm to a business. Much like how someone will run adblocker for a better online experience and to avoid viruses in some ads, I can't exactly condemn someone who pirates Spore to avoid getting SecurROM on their computer.

Right now, businesses show no level headed response to the 'piracy problem' in the music industry they hunt down random people and RUIN THEIR ENTIRE LIVES putting them hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars of debt, in response to 'stealing' about 15 dollars worth of music. In the game industry several publishers are making the gaming experience for legit customers like me worse and worse in an attempt to slow down how fast Pirates can crack their game.

I really can't take piracy to be a serious problem, because these companies are exaggerating it to the point that they might as well be trying to destroy fireant hills by calling in military air strikes.

JazzJack2:
But piracy doesn't make developers lose money, in fact it does the opposite, devs gain money from piracy.

Feel free to explain that one to the creaters of Dev Tycoon. With 94% of players not paying them to play their game, it is hard to see how it makes them so much money.

Haha! I love this.

Now all he has to do is add in an algorithm of higher sales due to increased exposure and a larger fanbase and he'd be all set.

Tygerml:
Not sure if it was mentioned yet, but I think it's funny that he says they're working hard making games when this is practically a clone of Game Dev Story by Kairosoft. I mean there's bound to be differences but I just see a lot of similarities that can't be accidental.

Bravo though on the anti-piracy measures, this kind of soft sabotage is a lot more effective against the passive pirate.

Edit: Just checked their forums and I guess they did bring up Kairosoft. Well, at least they're honest about their inspiration.

So do you call every single shooter ever made "practically a clone of Wolfenstein"? Just to be consistent?

maninahat:

JazzJack2:
But piracy doesn't make developers lose money, in fact it does the opposite, devs gain money from piracy.

Feel free to explain that one to the creaters of Dev Tycoon. With 94% of players not paying them to play their game, it is hard to see how it makes them so much money.

It's not the percentage of pirates that determines a game's profits, but it's amount of sales.

Pretty much every report we have about single player PC games' piracy, is around a 90%-95% rate, from the biggest hits to the tiniest failures.

World of Goo also had a 90% piracy rate, that everyone was infamously up in arms about. Then World of Goo earned hundreds of thousands of $s in the humble indie bundle alone, an unknown amount on the PC otherwise, and at leeast millions of $s on multiplatform releases (that's results can't be separated from it first becoming famous on the pc).

Maybe Game Dev tycoon will also be a huge success. Or maybe it won't, it might fail like a number of small games. But in the end, it's depending on that 6%, not on the 94%.

Entitled:

maninahat:

JazzJack2:
But piracy doesn't make developers lose money, in fact it does the opposite, devs gain money from piracy.

Feel free to explain that one to the creaters of Dev Tycoon. With 94% of players not paying them to play their game, it is hard to see how it makes them so much money.

It's not the percentage of pirates that determines a game's profits, but it's amount of sales...in the end, it's depending on that 6%, not on the 94%.

That is what I'm saying. Whilst there is no proof to say that a lost game is a lost sale, it stands to reason that within that 94%, it is fairly likely that there exists potential customers who wanted to see if they could freely torrent games instead. I expect there are more pirates who don't buy the games after pirating them, than there are pirates who play a game and choose to buy it later - which means JazzJack2's argument is wrong, and that piracy doesn't help. The only way Dev Tycoon benefits from piracy is through this elaborate prank they've pulled on the pirates, which has gained the game lots of attention.

maninahat:

That is what I'm saying. Whilst there is no proof to say that a lost game is a lost sale, it stands to reason that within that 94%, it is fairly likely that there exists potential customers who wanted to see if they could freely torrent games instead. I expect there are more pirates who don't buy the games after pirating them, than there are pirates who play a game and choose to buy it later - which means JazzJack2's argument is wrong, and that piracy doesn't help. The only way Dev Tycoon benefits from piracy is through this elaborate prank they've pulled on the pirates, which has gained the game lots of attention.

No, that's not just it.

Even if you assume that the sales could have been doubled by eliminating piracy, what would happen next?

Say, this one has 600 customes and 9400 other players.
By killing piracy, it would have 1200 sales, and no more players.

A playerbase of 1200, versus a playerbase of 10.000. Which one of them has more chances for future viral growth? Even if you assume that for the second, out of the virally gained new players 94% continue to be pirates, it's not improbable, that a vew months later, the 600 outgrows the 1200, that has no such synergic help.

There is plenty of anecdotal example of that pattern. For example, just look at how in the MMO market everything other than WoW constantly failed to catch on, as their unavoidable subscription turned their playerbases into little insular communities, while the current F2P market has no such problem, because the 90% freeloaders are allowed in.

For a non-gaming example, the classic story is how Friendship is Magic got viral thanks to how easily it could be uploaded to youtube, and years later it resulted in lots of iTunes episode sales. Not even necessarily from the same 4chan users who first watched the youtube videos, but from the ginormous fandom that kept snowballing on and on after them, thanks to the free access and the magic of sharing. :P

blackrave:

Akalabeth:

Your history while vaguely interesting is all anecdotal evidence and does not support your "conclusion" as quoted above.

Why not?

Because you're making a broad statement based on personal experience rather than scientific evidence. That's why.

From all the things I have observed in previous years, I came to conclusion that it is in developers best interest to keep fan base as large as possible, even if not all of them buys their games in legitimate way (or at all)
There is only gain and nothing to lost
Lets take for example person who have no disposable income and who can barely afford internet
There are 2 options when it comes to pay-to-play titles

If you can afford a PC or Console, you can afford the games for said console. Or your parents can afford them if they were the ones to purchase it.

How is it you had a PC for 5 years before you bought an actual game?
There's no excuse for that.

Entitled:
While not specifically at the rise of bittorrent, (which didn't really increase the amount of piracy either just made it more comfortable), but generally with the spread of internet usage in general, game profits did rise pretty rapidly, along with most other entertainment media.

Here are some amazing statistics about entertainment industry's growth in the past decade:

http://www.businessinsider.com/rupert-murdoch-is-wrong-heres-proof-that-digital-media-isnt-cannibalizing-showbiz-2012-1?op=1

Some interesting stuff, though I've neither the time nor desperate desire to sit and pull the stats apart. There are some low hanging fruit to start arguments (things like "I note the stats don't show the percentage change in the population of the world" or "increased box office takings could easily be attributed to price increases for 3D films") but there's not a lot of point.

You're right though, it's very hard to pull the figures apart and correctly adjust for other factors, off the top of my head:
- marketing spend (I don't think games were advertising in cinemas 15 years ago)
- the growth of the player base
- increased availability of game demos, news, reviews, gameplay videos, forums
- price increases
- smartphones

Entitled:
The funny thing is, we can't really tell. The stories about piracy losing a few sales, where someone obviously planned to buy a game but decided against it because there was piratebay, are just as anecdotal as the ones about someone wanting to buy it thanks to piracy. Only the above charts are certain. Entertainment is not dying, it's growing like crazy.

Certain is something of a moveable feast.

There's some interesting stats hidden in the videogames parts of that data though, try this on for size :
The number of videogame players in the US shot up 150% in 3 years from 2008 to 2011, and consumer spending on videogames in the US has gone up 150% in 6.

Or this:
The increase in videogame spending of 150% covers a period in which the number of US "game related companies" shot up 1700%.

Now I've honestly no idea how the hell someone went about defining a "game related company" but it's a reasonably hypothesis to say that a) the number of people employed in videogaming has probably gone up a lot faster than the amount of money (which either means fairer distribution of the cash) meaning that average salaries are down* and b) that development has moved the way of many smaller companies making lots of smaller, cheaper games**.

* = I have no stats whatsoever to back this up. It may well be false, but I'd be surprised. The Extra Credits people popped a stat which horrified me in one of their episodes, that the average career lifespan in videogame development is 5 years. Madness. Not exclusively the fault of piracy, lots of factors to blame, but still madness.
** = I have no stats whatsoever to back this up. But it's very probably true, it's mobile and Facebook gaming.

Entitled:
The problem with picking specific games that were killed by piracy, is that they always boil down to a Single Cause Fallacy.

Oh I agree, but your man there demanded an example of a game "ruined" by piracy, and for fans of the EHM franchie, EHM 2k8 counts as ruined/non-existent. Because of piracy? Well that was the line from the developers, the people who loved the game and wanted it out to as many adoring gamers as possible (as opposed to producers, the capitalist bogeymen we all love to hate) and whilst it might not be the whole truth, it's at least a big part of the truth and rarely does any single factor swing a decision.

Voltano:

What's even worse is that detecting what is a stolen cupcake from a legit cupcake is difficult. What if I sold a maggot-cupcake by 'accident' to a legit customer? The same could happen here in this game that their "DRM" could trigger via a bug on legal customers. Bugs like these are bound to appear in any kind of software, so its a very risky PR move for doing something like this.

Wasn't this a leaked version specially created for torrent sites? In that case, you're not even going into the store to get the cupcake. You're going into a back alley nearby where you know you're dealing with someone illicit. Do you seriously think that people are going to a torrent site to download something for free mistakenly thinking they're buying it from the shop?

Maybe your analogy applies to Titan's quest, but it doesn't here.

It probably doesn't apply at all. We're talking theft of physical goods versus piracy, and corruption of foodtuffs kept and prepared within the confines of a place ostensibly for human consumption versus digital goods.

JemJar:
snip

First of all, nitpicking: the population of the world has been increasing in the third world, middle/upper class westerners in general have a steadily decreasing population. Plenty of the charts were US exclusive.

Anyways, in general, I think it doesn't really matter exactly what tricks and business models and pricings were used to separate people from their money, as long as it is shown that they ARE willing to pay for media. Even if all the gaming growth would come from hard-to-crack consoles and mobile phones, it's really telling that people ARE willing to pay more and more for them, while they could just watch some pirated movies and read some pirated books.

For that matter, it's interesting how the traditional media are growing too, and not just the profits, but the amounts of songs/books/movies being created.

I'm not even literally saying these happened "because of piracy", just that file-sharing is inherently interconnected with a great focus on access to more and more data nowadays. For example, indie bands can now easily find an audience thanks to youtube, and then self-publish, or do a Kickstarter, or announce a concert on Twitter, and make a living from a small niche of fans, where decades ago, a publisher would have laughed at them. So more music made, more profits to music, etc.

That is happening everywhere, and I just don't see a way to wish away the supposed effects of piracy, without also taking away the benefits of the open culture that the Internet brought. The idea of "surfing" in a sea of information, and first experiencing lots of new content without borders, and only worry about "rewarding the owners" second.

The publishers, and even some shorter-sighted developers, would rather turn the Internet into one walled garden, or a corporate-owned store, where we can all stand in lines and get our appropriately bought content bit by bit, not even because they are certain that this would leave them with more money, just because they are terrified by the thought that they can no longer keep account of every single video viewed, book read, and game played.

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