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Will torrent websites ruin PC gaming?

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October 5, 2012 2:50:01 AM

I feel discouraged when I go to a torrent website, and I see 15,000 seeders, and 12,000 leechers on Borderlands 2. And that's just one site, at one time. Now my point is that game developers may soon find it unprofitable to make PC games, or at least, less profitable than making Xbox games because of how many copies are stolen. Let's assume 300,000 copies of Borderlands 2 were torrented. That's gotta be at least 10% of their sales? Maybe less. But still a significant amount. And, although it's possible to torrent Xbox games, it's much more difficult. I just want to hear what you guys think.
October 5, 2012 8:07:34 AM

Yeah, but how many copies did the producers say they sold? I'm not defending piracy, but I am a gamer because of it. Since I actually work, I play less (time and number of games) and can actually afford my games. With Skyrim and Oblivion I played the pirated versions while waiting my preorder (because that way I could play it earlier). Also, I view torrents as demos. I mean I bought Crysis because I liked the (officail) demo (this was 2 months after release). But how many games provide a demo? I want to get an idea of the value before blindly giving my money.

While I have no idea how many share my thoughts, I also know that the "piracy figures" are total bullshit. Without actually including a monitoring system (that will not stop pirates, just report anonymously) there is no way to obtain a number. Also, this process must be completely separate from the protection system, otherwise the crackers will find and disable it. Not to mention those that play offline (with bad or disabled connection). And how do you report 1 PC whose IP keeps changing or 5 PCs over a single IP without privacy issues?

Also, please bear in mind that without PC gaming, consoles will evolve even slower.
PC gaming, with it's variety of HW (GPUs mainly for gaming) is pushed by game developers with "photorealistic" and AI objectives.
If PC gaming does not stimulate GPU performance, then the industry will not bring faster devices (ar at least at a much slower rate).
Lack of "new" means slower new sales (even for low-end devices). I mean people who can afford will not change their HW.
If sales are going down, where do you get money for research? Raise prices and you affect sales even more.
October 5, 2012 8:23:36 AM

I don't think it is as bad as it looks. When I was earning a lot less than I am now I was a massive pirate, but since then I have bought loads on Steams and all of the really good ones I pirated out of guilt.

So there will be a percentage of those people like me who will end up buying at some point.
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October 5, 2012 1:25:47 PM

First of all, if 300,000 copies were torrented, they cannot say that those are lost sales. Because for all they know those people could never afford to pay $60 for that game. So, applying statistics to bogus numbers doesn't really help the argument one way or another.

More to the point on your original question: torrent websites will not kill PC gaming. If you're familiar with the said websites, you should already know there's just as many cracked/copied versions of console games you can download. So, unfortunately for developers, piracy applies to consoles too (but publisher companies don't want you to know that).

Besides that, torrent sites are not the problem, because no torrent website charges people for the downloaded games (none that I've heard of). So, even though torrent websites are illegal a developer/publisher cannot claim income loss since no income was incurred by the said torrent site. However, there's a pretty large spread "black market" for pirated games on the street. This is especially true for countries in for example eastern europe. There, pirated game retails for about $5. That is the true income the publisher lost, because people were willing to pay for the game, except they paid for a "discounted" game. That's a lost sale, and that is the biggest problem that exists in the piracy scene.

Torrent websites contribute to the spread of pirated copies, and make it easier for those back alley vendors to make a quick buck since all they have to pay for is a CD+burner to possibly make loads of money at close to 100% profit margin.

And again, don't kid yourself that this only applies to PC gaming. The situation is exactly the same for consoles. The only reason we are seeing games consistently developed for consoles instead of PC is console hardware has stayed the same for 8 years. Every developer and their grandmother has developed libraries and engines for console coding, so only thing they got to change is put in new game content. For a PC every time you make a new game you got to update the engine to keep up with new hardware/drivers/APIs/etc. It's much more costly to develop for PC, and with industry tendency on making a quick buck for as cheap as possible, consoles is an obvious go-to platform.

As an off-topic: companies like EA will ruin gaming in general.
October 5, 2012 9:50:52 PM

It's a rather specious argument to say that 1 pirated copy is equal to 1 lost sale. Some of those people would have never bought the game at any price, some people may have bought the game after pirating it, some people might buy it but prefer the pirated version because it provides a better experience. To name a few ways (that don't necessarily apply to Borderlands 2: No need for the game disc in the drive, no need to be connected to a server in order to play the game, and no DRM that could easily fit the definition of a rootkit. People click the icon for the game, and get to actually play the game with minimal hassle. I've also seen "hacks" that cut out the long series of company adverts before the main screen of the game loads.

So, I think there's plenty of blame to go around, developers and pirates alike.
October 5, 2012 10:00:45 PM

Hi :) 

Anyone else remember 1998 ?

Half Life Beta was "accidentally released onto the net"

It was absolutely stunning as a new game, and everybody downloaded the illegal version and played it....even though it wasnt finished, including me...

The second it was Officially released, I and hundreds of thousands of others rushed to buy it....

Now did Gabe Newell release it on purpose ? I dont know , but would love to discuss it with him....

Whether he did or not...it was the start of Steam and made him and Valve millions....

Word of mouth is a VERY powerful selling tool....

The only problem these days is that games generally are not that good or different....

I would pay double or treble for Half Life 3 though :) 

All the best Brett :) 
October 5, 2012 10:01:06 PM

Blame Steam. It's ridiculously easy to hack the Steam valid game check, and simply put Steam in offline mode to avoid detection to play the torrents. If you make something too easy to do of course people will take advantage of it.

October 5, 2012 10:43:26 PM

amkronos said:
Blame Steam. It's ridiculously easy to hack the Steam valid game check, and simply put Steam in offline mode to avoid detection to play the torrents. If you make something too easy to do of course people will take advantage of it.



Hi :) 

Over the last 12 years or so of Steam, a lot of people thought they could get around its security, and they were correct for a short period of time, then they alter it again and all those torrented games wont work anymore....

Yes kids will always Pirate ..until they get caught, but most gamers have a sense of fairness and usually are happy to pay for a good game...

All the best Brett :) 
October 5, 2012 11:26:12 PM

Pirating has already affected PC gaming. PC developers have found that there are many times more pirated PC games as there are console games. As a result, many developers stopped making games for PC's, and instead port their console games to the PC, if they offer a PC version of the game at all. You'll also notice that PC dev's are more focus on online games. Like MMO's in particular. This is the one area that dev's have found works with PC's.

When some games are finding that 80% of the copies out there are pirated versions, the dev's take notice.
October 6, 2012 12:19:19 AM

mathew7 said:

While I have no idea how many share my thoughts, I also know that the "piracy figures" are total bullshit. Without actually including a monitoring system (that will not stop pirates, just report anonymously) there is no way to obtain a number. Also, this process must be completely separate from the protection system, otherwise the crackers will find and disable it. Not to mention those that play offline (with bad or disabled connection). And how do you report 1 PC whose IP keeps changing or 5 PCs over a single IP without privacy issues?


I would share your opinion on this particular point, if it wasn't for companies who are NOT advocating strict DRM to combat pirates (see: CD Projekt RED) being fairly confident in reporting that their game (Witcher 2 in this instance) was pirated more than it was purchased. Since they aren't adopting the hard line of irresponsibly censoring gamers' rights, they can make such a statement with an air of validity as they're not striving to overstate the issue in the first place and are adopting a policy that assumes people are mostly honest (even as they are repeatedly proven to not be in the instance of PC piracy).

Which is to say that "I know" is an overly strong phrase, if you follow.

Also I don't view pirated copies of games as demos, but neither does anyone else still posting here so that's hardly worth addressing really.
October 6, 2012 12:22:21 AM

evilsooty said:
I don't think it is as bad as it looks. When I was earning a lot less than I am now I was a massive pirate, but since then I have bought loads on Steams and all of the really good ones I pirated out of guilt.

So there will be a percentage of those people like me who will end up buying at some point.


If game publishers and developers were one giant collective, this would be only slightly less stupid.
October 6, 2012 10:23:54 AM

When im not sure about buying a game, i first torrent it, try it and then buy it.... i think its wrong.. but i dont have alot of money to spend in a game i dont like. I really like having a big list in my steam account.
October 6, 2012 2:01:46 PM

most cases, if a new game is coming out, ill check with friends to see if they will be buying it as well, especially on steam if they come out with package deals, we will all pitch in and buy that to save on cash.

i dont normally torrent games, even if i do its because im uncertain about liking it, and once i try it out if i dont like it i just remove it because it is a waste of space, but if i like it ill go out and buy it for my library of games.

i know torrenting games is wrong, but why should i fund a game developer when the game is not worth my time to even play all the way through.
October 6, 2012 3:12:11 PM

That's what review sites are for. We all know that when people say they use it as a demo, that the vast majority just use that as an excuse.
October 6, 2012 6:37:55 PM

you cant trust review sites for what you think as fun might not be to others.

there have been many reviews that i disagreed with either for good or bad or a game.
October 6, 2012 7:40:59 PM

I can say the same for most everything else in life. Movies aren't always what we expected, cars don't always show us their true colors until later. TV's and monitors aren't always what we expected. We buy these products or pay to see them knowing that we want or need them. There are no guarantees that we'll like them.

It's great when they give a demo, which gives us a better idea, but how often have you "demoed" a game from a torrent site, and after 20+ hours of play, you never purchased the real game? I don't expect and answer, because I doubt I'd get the truth anyways, but think about it for your self.
October 6, 2012 8:31:44 PM

bystander said:
I can say the same for most everything else in life. Movies aren't always what we expected, cars don't always show us their true colors until later. TV's and monitors aren't always what we expected. We buy these products or pay to see them knowing that we want or need them. There are no guarantees that we'll like them.

It's great when they give a demo, which gives us a better idea, but how often have you "demoed" a game from a torrent site, and after 20+ hours of play, you never purchased the real game? I don't expect and answer, because I doubt I'd get the truth anyways, but think about it for your self.


i total get where you are coming from, im not trying to defend what some of us do is right, because it is not. just saying if a company really wants my money that bad and they say their game is really worth it then show me, let me have a taste and i can decide from there.
October 7, 2012 1:20:12 AM

You can call me a bullshitter if you want but I don't really care. I have both consoles and PCs and have zero issue torrenting a game I bought for my console. Skyrim is a prime example. I love the console version but the modding capability is too good for me to pass up so yes I plan on downloading it soon. Bethesda has my money for it, its DLC and in other games like Fallout 3 but I'm sure it'll show up in some statistic somewhere and used to say how they're losing money somehow.

My general take on piracy is that it's generally a service issue. Content providers want to dictate every tiny aspect about their product which goes counter to the first sale doctrine which states that once you sell it to me then I can do with it whatever I want. I pirate mostly to get things across devices, get no CD versions, versions that don't report back to home base when it's not really an always online application and to get around other protections that limit how I can use what I've purchased.

The bottom line is I view the products I purchased as mine. I give very little leeway to the concept of licenses except where absolutely necessary (MMOs for instance) or there are inherent limitations that are obvious going into the deal (like going to a movie theater) again leaning back to the first sale doctrine which has been how business is done for everything not digital.
October 7, 2012 2:01:31 AM

sscultima said:
i total get where you are coming from, im not trying to defend what some of us do is right, because it is not. just saying if a company really wants my money that bad and they say their game is really worth it then show me, let me have a taste and i can decide from there.


I agree that it would be nice to see game demos made more widely available, but they are actually becoming more common. A lot of games have demos if you're willing to go look for them these days, just not all games.

Regardless of this, it does not in any way justify stealing the game for temporary use or otherwise. People are trying to try different lines in the sands of morality because we're dealing with a digital product that they don't have to actually slip into their pocket to steal, and if I'm to be frank most people thieving on the internet also don't have the minimal amount of spine required to risk stealing a physical product otherwise.
October 8, 2012 12:17:45 PM

casualcolors said:
I agree that it would be nice to see game demos made more widely available, but they are actually becoming more common. A lot of games have demos if you're willing to go look for them these days, just not all games.

Regardless of this, it does not in any way justify stealing the game for temporary use or otherwise. People are trying to try different lines in the sands of morality because we're dealing with a digital product that they don't have to actually slip into their pocket to steal, and if I'm to be frank most people thieving on the internet also don't have the minimal amount of spine required to risk stealing a physical product otherwise.


and again i agree. stealing online is as easy as just clicking a button, and that is why as long as torrent sites stay up there will always be piracy no matter what, some people may be caught doing it, get fines, or ISP cut offs (depending on the country and severity) but it will not keep everyone from downloading illegally.
October 8, 2012 12:53:04 PM

For me its very hard to take a stand on either side (pirates vs Companies), since both are doing something wrong.
It seems however that companies are never rearly punished by governments for their behaviour, while pirates can have their entire life ruined (for submiting software to others for free).

Then there are other companies that make games and give them for free...
So in my books, i play free games, buy great games once i can afford them.
October 8, 2012 2:04:48 PM

cats_Paw said:
For me its very hard to take a stand on either side (pirates vs Companies), since both are doing something wrong.
It seems however that companies are never rearly punished by governments for their behaviour, while pirates can have their entire life ruined (for submiting software to others for free).

Then there are other companies that make games and give them for free...
So in my books, i play free games, buy great games once i can afford them.


I'm not sure what the game companies are doing that is wrong. I've been gaming for 25 years, and the price for games have stayed the same, but the cost to make games has gone up many times over. Game developers spend 12-16 hours days every day to build these games for average salary, and most these games don't make money, so the producers don't make money most the time. It's all a gamble.
October 8, 2012 2:40:24 PM

sscultima said:
and again i agree. stealing online is as easy as just clicking a button, and that is why as long as torrent sites stay up there will always be piracy no matter what, some people may be caught doing it, get fines, or ISP cut offs (depending on the country and severity) but it will not keep everyone from downloading illegally.

There will always be piracy, no matter what. Irrelevant of torrent websites. FIFY :D 
October 8, 2012 2:53:21 PM

cats_Paw said:
For me its very hard to take a stand on either side (pirates vs Companies), since both are doing something wrong.
It seems however that companies are never rearly punished by governments for their behaviour, while pirates can have their entire life ruined (for submiting software to others for free).

Then there are other companies that make games and give them for free...
So in my books, i play free games, buy great games once i can afford them.


Do you mean companies in general (which you could argue is outside the scope of this argument concerning digital game piracy) or do you mean gaming companies specifically (of which none I can think have done anything to warrant real world legal consequences, perhaps barring Blizzard's warranted wirefraud scandal)?
October 10, 2012 6:13:52 PM

Clearly some companies are doing quite well making and selling PC games, so you have to think the companies that blame piracy for their failure are probably just poorly managed and were making crappy games in the first place. Success isn't guaranteed in any industry. Games like Bastion and Torchlight have shown that when you don't have a bloated marketing campaign or huge corporate infrastructure that your game has to support that you don't have to charge 60 bucks and include an intrusive DRM system to make your game profitable.
October 10, 2012 6:17:12 PM

benski said:
Clearly some companies are doing quite well making and selling PC games, so you have to think the companies that blame piracy for their failure are probably just poorly managed and were making crappy games in the first place. Success isn't guaranteed in any industry. Games like Bastion and Torchlight have shown that when you don't have a bloated marketing campaign or huge corporate infrastructure that your game has to support that you don't have to charge 60 bucks and include an intrusive DRM system to make your game profitable.


i was going to mention this but figured id leave it to someone else to mention, some companies can take example from torchlight and bastion.
October 10, 2012 6:27:29 PM

benski said:
Clearly some companies are doing quite well making and selling PC games, so you have to think the companies that blame piracy for their failure are probably just poorly managed and were making crappy games in the first place. Success isn't guaranteed in any industry. Games like Bastion and Torchlight have shown that when you don't have a bloated marketing campaign or huge corporate infrastructure that your game has to support that you don't have to charge 60 bucks and include an intrusive DRM system to make your game profitable.


At the same time, Bastion and Torchlight are widely pirated and if you want to think a bit abstractly, perhaps you can look to some measurable amount of lost income as an explanation for no Bastion 2 in sight and the 3 year development time and 1 year delay on Torchlight 2 which utilizes many of the same assets as the first.

Now you won't find a bigger fan of TL2 or Bastion on this forum than myself, and I don't think it's really fair to invoke the success of either game as somehow being proof of concept for a theory revolving around quality undermining piracy. Witcher 2 having been pirated more times than it was purchased by account of CD Projekt RED (who do not adopt a hard line against piracy and actually ascribe to the theory that quality will prevail over pirates commercially) is proof of the complete opposite. Witcher 2's perceived commercial success is underlined and more importantly marred to any investor in the industry when the company admits that its philosophy to combating piracy by trusting in the good nature of gamers was literally ineffective.

Unveiled reality is that for most people, the strongest defense against theft is the high risk of confrontation, which is considerably less likely when it comes to digital piracy. That's why it's easier for people to pull the trigger on a torrent than on pocketing a Snickers bar.
October 10, 2012 7:22:26 PM

If there wasn't some profits being made, there wouldn't be an industry, but due to the massive piracy problem, what we get is much more limited. Because of the Piracy problem, 80%-85% of the games sold are sold for a loss. There are hits, and the hits are all you guys seem to remember, but when the majority of games are losses, that forces game companies to be very choosy on what they make for us. Have you noticed that PC gaming has made a huge shift from single player games to online games? This is because piracy.

You used to see a lot of innovation, we see a lot less because of piracy. They can't afford to take a risk, so they stick to what they know will make a profit and even then, most the time they lose, but I assume the successes make up for the losses.
October 10, 2012 8:26:46 PM

bystander said:
If there wasn't some profits being made, there wouldn't be an industry, but due to the massive piracy problem, what we get is much more limited. Because of the Piracy problem, 80%-85% of the games sold are sold for a loss. There are hits, and the hits are all you guys seem to remember, but when the majority of games are losses, that forces game companies to be very choosy on what they make for us. Have you noticed that PC gaming has made a huge shift from single player games to online games? This is because piracy.

You used to see a lot of innovation, we see a lot less because of piracy. They can't afford to take a risk, so they stick to what they know will make a profit and even then, most the time they lose, but I assume the successes make up for the losses.


Well said.
October 10, 2012 8:58:11 PM

I think some of you are seeing the past through rose colored glasses. I've been buying PC games for 20 years and remember no such golden age of innovation before piracy. IMO the quality, value and selection you get in PC games through steam and the like these days is better than it has ever been.
October 10, 2012 9:19:56 PM

I take offense with the whole compare past to present, because comparing 20 years ago when video gaming industry was in its infancy to the massive behemoth it is now isn't a fair comparison. But, that wasn't the topic of this thread.
October 11, 2012 12:32:17 AM

majestic1805 said:
I have both consoles and PCs and have zero issue torrenting a game I bought for my console. Skyrim is a prime example. I love the console version but the modding capability is too good for me to pass up so yes I plan on downloading it soon. Bethesda has my money for it, its DLC and in other games like Fallout 3 but I'm sure it'll show up in some statistic somewhere and used to say how they're losing money somehow.


I agree completely. If you've already paid for the game, the i don't think there's anythin wrong in DLing to PC. Companies don't complain about other ways that they've potentially lost money. e.g. if you have a family with 3 kids and a parent all sharing 1 copy that they paid for, it could be argued that the publisher has lost 3 sales because 1 copy is being shared amongst several people; now surely paying for 1 game and "sharing" it with other platforms is no worse.
I would also add that there is nothing stopping you from buying a game (e.g. for PS3) and taking that game to play on multiple Ps3's (e.g. if you live with one parent in the week but then live with the other at weekends and take the game to play on another PS3). Publishers have no problem (at least i haven't heard of any) in you sharing 1 game on multiple consoles as long as it's the same platform. Surely, sharing 1 game on multiple consoles that are different platforms should be no different.

I also have no problem with people torrenting just to try out the game for half an hour so that they know it's worth the purchase and runs smoothly on their PC. I don't approve of people torrenting the game without paying for it all as this will affect the publishers and developers sales and revenue (even if it's not as much as they say).
October 11, 2012 10:45:43 AM

Every time there has been an advance in communcation and recording (audio tape, video tape, dvd, blue ray, etc.), there has been an increase in 'pirates'. Fears that audio tape would end the recording industry sales did not happen. Video tape did not end movie sales. Computers will not end PC gaming sales. Torrent 'pirates' will not end PC gaming.

The fact is: the cat is out of the bag. For many years, people have been easily able to digitize information (songs, pictures, movies, text), and easily transfer these items to each other via the internet, cell phones, & media like recordable cd's / dvd's / blue-ray). This technology is not going to be stuffed back into a bottle, but is going to grow. Debating whether this technology is right or wrong is certainly academic. Railing against the people that take advantage of easily accessible technologies is short-sighted. The question is how purveyors and customers deal with these new economies in an age where people that really want to can easily obtain these things for free.

Are the guys that make good games now poor? The ones I know certainly are NOT. Are the musical artists that make good music now poverty-stricken? I doubt that too. Do they not make as much money as they used too? I do not know - maybe - maybe not.

Now is NOT the time to condemn software pirates. Those ranks are simply going to grow due to tecnological availablilty. Now IS the time for companies to more boldly embrace this tecnology through increased and innovative on-line distribution - like STEAM. It is the time for companies to incorporate value-added packages (like DLC content, pre-order content, and collectable content) to their games to encourage sales over torrenting. I'm sure that there are additional solutions - and these are things are a good step that innovative companies ARE doing. Just some opinions.
October 11, 2012 7:34:19 PM

What was the last AAA game made for PC? crysis, maybe Arma 2 if you count that. Piracy pretty much destroyed PC gaming, not because it necessarily affected sales but publishers bought into the BS that it did. This is only one of the many reasons why we shouldn't support big publishers, not only aren't they making games for our platform but they are not even open to the idea.
October 11, 2012 7:38:13 PM

nocturnal7x said:
What was the last AAA game made for PC? crysis, maybe Arma 2 if you count that. Piracy pretty much destroyed PC gaming, not because it necessarily affected sales but publishers bought into the BS that it did. This is only one of the many reasons why we shouldn't support big publishers, not only aren't they making games for our platform but they are not even open to the idea.


I find it funny how all those defending piracy and possibly others like yourself if you don't, seem to think piracy isn't a problem. I'd like to think those who see the actual sales figures would know better than someone that doesn't.
October 11, 2012 7:43:44 PM

bystander said:
I'd like to think those who see the actual sales figures would know better than someone that doesn't.


Not on MY internet...!
October 12, 2012 1:05:29 AM

bystander said:
I find it funny how all those defending piracy and possibly others like yourself if you don't, seem to think piracy isn't a problem. I'd like to think those who see the actual sales figures would know better than someone that doesn't.



Maybe read what I wrote again... The premise of my post was that piracy has already destroyed PC gaming. I was stating its not as big of an issue as some developers and publishers make it sound, but piracy did kill PC gaming, whether it affected sales or not.
October 12, 2012 1:06:47 AM

*double post*
October 12, 2012 1:10:08 AM

nocturnal7x said:
Maybe read what I wrote again... The premise of my post was that piracy has already destroyed PC gaming. I was stating its not as big of an issue as some developers and publishers make it sound, but piracy did kill PC gaming, whether it affected sales or not.


I understood that point, that is why I highlighted the part I did. I simply am making the point that some how these people who defend piracy, and yourself, seem to believe that the publishers are lying.

I've also known a few developers, and these guys do not make good money doing what they do. If games made more money, they may actually make what they deserve. As it is, no one in their right mind would ever be a game developer unless they loved making games. They work over a 100 hours a week for a modest salary (they don't get paid by the hour, so all that overtime does not pay). If games made more money, they wouldn't have to be slaves.
October 12, 2012 1:20:14 AM

bystander said:
I understood that point, that is why I highlighted the part I did. I simply am making the point that some how these people who defend piracy, and yourself, seem to believe that the publishers are lying.

I've also known a few developers, and these guys do not make good money doing what they do. If games made more money, they may actually make what they deserve. As it is, no one in their right mind would ever be a game developer unless they loved making games. They work over a 100 hours a week for a modest salary (they don't get paid by the hour, so all that overtime does not pay). If games made more money, they wouldn't have to be slaves.


At the end of the day, you both meet the same conclusion more or less, regardless of what evidence you choose to cite as proof thereof. And really it's not a matter of what evidence, but during what time period as the primary point of differentiation between you two.
October 12, 2012 1:32:58 AM

I find it hard to believe publishers yes. Ubisoft says 93-95% of PC games are pirated and not bought. Cevat Yerli of crytek has said a game like crysis would have sold 4 to 5 times more on consoles.

93-95% of PC games are not pirated, thats a number pulled out of an asshole. Crysis would not have sold 10+ million copies on consoles.

No I don't believe the devs or the publishers (EA and Ubi complaining more than anyone else ive seen). Console games are easier to make, console games are cheaper to make, console gamers are less demanding. Console is seen as a safer bet by investors and thus publishers and devs toe the overlords line. This has led to the stagnation we see in gaming today.
October 12, 2012 1:33:37 AM

casualcolors said:
At the end of the day, you both meet the same conclusion more or less, regardless of what evidence you choose to cite as proof thereof. And really it's not a matter of what evidence, but during what time period as the primary point of differentiation between you two.



Hey now you :p 
October 12, 2012 1:38:42 AM

nocturnal7x said:
I find it hard to believe publishers yes. Ubisoft says 93-95% of PC games are pirated and not bought. Cevat Yerli of crytek has said a game like crysis would have sold 4 to 5 times more on consoles.

93-95% of PC games are not pirated, thats a number pulled out of an asshole. Crysis would not have sold 10+ million copies on consoles.

No I don't believe the devs or the publishers (EA and Ubi complaining more than anyone else ive seen). Console games are easier to make, console games are cheaper to make, console gamers are less demanding. Console is seen as a safer bet by investors and thus publishers and devs toe the overlords line. This has led to the stagnation we see in gaming today.


Well, I think you may be connecting the dots and thinking they said something different than they did. Althouth I've never seen 93-95%. I have seen 83-85% said by some publishers. That said, they didn't say that they would have sold all those pirated copies. They said how many copies are pirated copies. The percent of those they would otherwise sold can only be guessed at.
October 12, 2012 2:08:21 AM

nocturnal7x said:
I find it hard to believe publishers yes. Ubisoft says 93-95% of PC games are pirated and not bought. Cevat Yerli of crytek has said a game like crysis would have sold 4 to 5 times more on consoles.

93-95% of PC games are not pirated, thats a number pulled out of an asshole. Crysis would not have sold 10+ million copies on consoles.

No I don't believe the devs or the publishers (EA and Ubi complaining more than anyone else ive seen). Console games are easier to make, console games are cheaper to make, console gamers are less demanding. Console is seen as a safer bet by investors and thus publishers and devs toe the overlords line. This has led to the stagnation we see in gaming today.


As I've mentioned in the thread, it's not just EA or Ubisoft. It's CDProjekt RED as well. A lot of publishers and development teams cite piracy for tangible lost sales (less than 100% but certainly a fair amount can be counted as such). It's easy to demonize the big bad publishers (although EA's consumption of Westwood studios is getting further and further in the past and personally I've let it go), but it's not hard for a reasonably intelligent person to read between the dramatic overtures about the evil pirates, and see that there is also a lot of truth there behind the theater.
October 13, 2012 6:50:21 AM

I do think publishers overstate things to draw attention no different than a politician or anyone else trying to gain a favorable public opinion on something.

The 93-95 figure is accurate. http://www.ign.com/articles/2012/08/22/ubisoft-pc-has-p...

There is certainly a lot of nuance to the issue. For example, one game, can't remember which, put in DRM such that you only ever get a single play through then the game locks you out. These kinds of things are basically taunting the hacker community. This is only one example, sure, but I'm not going to do an exhaustive research on the topic. Other things are done like locking down content to only new copies of the game. While this might make sense in a piracy world, it screws over resell venues like GameStop that sell used games which is a completely legitimate practice.

Ubisoft has actually done a 180 on this. http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2012/09/05/ubisoft-scra...

If they firmly believe piracy is fleecing them so badly, why 'give up' essentially?

The problem with piracy is entirely perceptual. If data was public that could correlate sales and piracy downloads I'm confident the data would show the actual thieves to be in the minority, the degree of which is debatable. This has actually been looked into a bit. http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/2009/apr/21/study-finds...

In either case, there is no concrete data saying it is an actual problem. But, because it's such a huge gray area, it's easy to paint it as a boogeyman.
October 13, 2012 2:36:25 PM

majestic1805 said:
For example, one game, can't remember which, put in DRM such that you only ever get a single play through then the game locks you out. These kinds of things are basically taunting the hacker community.


That wasn't a form of DRM. That was a developer troll in a now urban-legendary game that I doubt anyone on this forum has even played. Perhaps you're injecting a bit too much "nuance" into the debate.

When you're developing and releasing a product you always account for various forms of loss when determining a projection for profit, and theft is one of those forms of loss. The issue is that digital theft is much easier and more conscionable to an average person than stealing an actual Sega cartridge was 17 years ago.

Just look at this thread on a forum that strictly prohibits piracy. I'm not saying that it is full of pirates, but the amount of people willing to act as apologists for what simply boils down to theft is so pathetic that it begins to feel humorous and exasperating.
October 13, 2012 2:48:29 PM

casualcolors said:
That wasn't a form of DRM. That was a developer troll in a now urban-legendary game that I doubt anyone on this forum has even played. Perhaps you're injecting a bit too much "nuance" into the debate.

When you're developing and releasing a product you always account for various forms of loss when determining a projection for profit, and theft is one of those forms of loss. The issue is that digital theft is much easier and more conscionable to an average person than stealing an actual Sega cartridge was 17 years ago.

Just look at this thread on a forum that strictly prohibits piracy. I'm not saying that it is full of pirates, but the amount of people willing to act as apologists for what simply boils down to theft is so pathetic that it begins to feel humorous and exasperating.


I find that pretty interesting as well.
October 13, 2012 4:16:14 PM



The game I'm referring to is much older than this. This article isn't about PC gaming and in the end didn't this not go live? If you want to have a discussion about how Capcom conceives to scam console gamers, you should make a thread about it (it would be a long ass thread at that). But this thread is about PC Piracy. Stick to the issue AND the platform, ffs.

Not to spend too much time on this side topic btw, but you didn't research this particular topic very far either. It limited the save file but you could play the game again with all of your unlocks, and the game could in fact be resold. You should probably just avoid this line of argument all together.

The only semi-relevant (in that it at least pertained to PC) game and the one that I was referencing was an urban legend game called Killswitch.
October 13, 2012 6:29:51 PM

It did go live.

The point is that publishers take the fight too far, "ffs," over something as ambiguous and unverifiable as the claim that what is commonly referred to as piracy represents actual lost sales. I've shown they are willing to make outrageous claims (95% of the market is pirated copies, ya right), react too far (arbitrary restrictions on games that serve no tangible purpose as far as game content is concerned), and those claims can in fact be directly false ("pirates" in fact drive the market in some cases). Thus, as I would have hoped you would be able to conclude, piracy in general isn't a real issue.

It's blown out of proportion and is merely a scapegoat for an industry to try to milk more money out of their customers. All industries do this. Piracy is simply the tactic used for gaming and PC gaming since you want to be sooo specific. There are legitimate reasons to download things. Replacing damaged game discs is one. What I do, which is arguably shady, doesn't leave the publisher up the creek as I do pay for the games I play.
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