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-   -   A Novel Take on Piracy (http://www.rpgwatch.com/forums/showthread.php?t=4639)

Corwin June 1st, 2008 12:05

A Novel Take on Piracy
 
Over at Twenty-Sided, Shamus Young has written a very novel take on on game piracy comparing it to sneaking into the movies without paying. In his usual humerous way, he makes several pertinent points and for a change, I'll give you part of his conclusion:
Quote:

Which brings me to the only weapon I have at my disposal: I vote with my dollars every chance I get. Iíve forsworn BioShock, Mass Effect, Spore, and other big-name titles because of the contempt they show for honest people. I buy stuff from Stardock, even if the game isnít really my cup of tea. To wit: My interest in Sins of a Solar Empire was minuscule compared to any of the games I mentioned above, and it cost more. ($60 Collectorís Edition. Ow.) Stardock got me to pay more for a game I wanted less, and all they had to do was treat me like a customer instead of an enemy.
You can find it all right here.
More information.

Elwro June 1st, 2008 12:05

I always get the "403 Forbidden" error when trying to read Shamus Young's page. Anyone got an idea? (Save for using a proxy.)

Alrik Fassbauer June 1st, 2008 12:33

Works for me now, although it's a little bit slow.

r3dshift June 1st, 2008 12:33

The site loads great with IE 6.0 under Windows XP SP2. A most funny read. :)

Elwro June 1st, 2008 14:25

I tried IE and it still doesn't work for me; it's the only page on which I get the "Forbidden" error. I wonder if it's country-related or what?

Alrik Fassbauer June 1st, 2008 15:28

I cannot say since I don't know your country.

I'd rather think that IE's security measures are too high.

Prime Junta June 1st, 2008 15:56

Hm. I don't like intrusive copy protection either, but it's more important for me that games I like to play continue to be made. Therefore I continue to buy games I want to play, even if the DRM is nastier than I'd like — unless we're talking Starforce or rootkit level evil. Am I weird?

zahratustra June 1st, 2008 17:08

Yes you are PJ but that doesn't stop me from agreeing with you :)

The Watchman June 1st, 2008 17:12

I would normally agree with you Junta, but in this day and age, nothing worth while is made. Sure i can entertain myself for 20mins on some gta nobrain shitbox nonsense, but thats it. I dont feel attached to the games nor is there any thought or story in things other than "OMG lets make some more money on braindead kids".

So only thing left is indie games without DRM nonsense or kiddiebox whoring. The big games i just look at, i then blink and grab a book or something worth my time. Bioshock, Mass effect etc is nothing but lame games for the junk generation where using iq over 20 aint allowed.

So i wote with my cash and buy each and every indie game thats worth just 5mins of my time and throw all those big games out the window.

The thing is…. I might have bought one of the bigger games just to waste some time, but when you throw in the DRM crap, im out !

Again you might lure braindead kids, but noway someone with a normal brain will buy junk like this. So in the end, fuck off EA and Bioware, bethelda and all the other junk companies who cater to the lowest and forget their roots…. Fuck em !

woges June 1st, 2008 17:16

Quote:

Originally Posted by Prime Junta (Post 81529)
Hm. I don't like intrusive copy protection either, but it's more important for me that games I like to play continue to be made. Therefore I continue to buy games I want to play, even if the DRM is nastier than I'd like — unless we're talking Starforce or rootkit level evil. Am I weird?

Nope, it's a dilemma all right.

zahratustra June 1st, 2008 17:30

Aren't you overdoing the "doom and gloom" bit Watchman? We all wish that single player game market was more buoyant and that we all were more spoilt for a choice but 2007 wasn't a complete waste for SPGs and 2008 might still spring a few suprises so, even discounting EA, Bioware and Bethesda, end of the world is not quite nigh!

NFLed June 1st, 2008 19:46

I don't get why it's important for people to be "treated like an honest person"? I care that I get the best game I can for a good price etc. and that the game works fine. If I'm in a store and a sensor scans me as I walk out to make sure that I'm not shoplifting what the heck do I care? As long as that scan doesn't damage my own items then I couldn't care less.

Skip buying a great game like Bioshock or Mass Effect? That's totally ridiculous, if those games aren't my cup of tea or on the border I could of course see skipping them but forcing myself to miss out on weeks of great gaming just because of some stupid notion about whether it's fair that companies try to avoid piracy is complete lunacy in my view.

Sometimes people get so strident about the most ridiculous topics but to each their own.

Yeesh June 1st, 2008 20:13

Agree NFLed. The article is written by a smart person who's heart is in the right place, but his conclusion is just dumb. Dumb dumb dumb. Voting with your dollar, not on the basis of how much you like a game, but instead on the basis of whether a company has DRM? Good plan. Hey, I'm making a game, Paypal me $50 and I'll email you the source code, distribute it to whoever you want. Working title: "Hello world." (that's supposed to be a programmer joke, but I'm not a programmer)

Anywho, firstly I'll point out that most indy games DO have pretty hefty DRM schemes. And secondly I'll point out that we don't hold it against them because for god's sake, those guys need all the help they can get, so what true gamer complains abuot having to jump through a few extra hoops to keep the little guys in business?

Well guess what, PC gamers. Our whole platform is the little guy these days. But online activation, or even DVD checks so bad that you have a whole 5% chance of having to contact tech support or even surf over to gamecopy and download a crack to play a game you pay for are not really analogous to strip searches. You'd really rather not have PC gaming at all then deal with a minor inconvenience? Smart plan.

Hey let's get rid of air travel too. I paid for my ticket, but I still have to wait on line to go through the metal detector? Stop treating ME like a criminal!

Step back fella June 1st, 2008 20:18

Quote:

Originally Posted by Elwro (Post 81520)
I tried IE and it still doesn't work for me; it's the only page on which I get the "Forbidden" error. I wonder if it's country-related or what?

Same here. It's possible they are blocking connections coming from Poland - for whatever reason.

blatantninja June 1st, 2008 21:24

Quote:

Originally Posted by NFLed (Post 81544)
I don't get why it's important for people to be "treated like an honest person"? I care that I get the best game I can for a good price etc. and that the game works fine. If I'm in a store and a sensor scans me as I walk out to make sure that I'm not shoplifting what the heck do I care? As long as that scan doesn't damage my own items then I couldn't care less.

Skip buying a great game like Bioshock or Mass Effect? That's totally ridiculous, if those games aren't my cup of tea or on the border I could of course see skipping them but forcing myself to miss out on weeks of great gaming just because of some stupid notion about whether it's fair that companies try to avoid piracy is complete lunacy in my view.

Sometimes people get so strident about the most ridiculous topics but to each their own.

I think the issue is how intrusive the DRM is. I don't have a problem with companies making sure that I paid for my software, but when it ends up causing system problems or I have to connect online and maybe I'm not in a spot to do so or losing the manual or something so that even though it's installed, I still can't get it to load (this happened with a couple old Ultima titles I tried to play), it's a problem.

That's why I don't mind connecting online to activate then being left to go along my merry way.

Alrik Fassbauer June 1st, 2008 21:51

Quote:

Originally Posted by NFLed (Post 81544)
I don't get why it's important for people to be "treated like an honest person"?

Philosophy. The "Menschenbild", the picture or image of humans someone has in his or her mind.

If I hold a certain point of people, I'm going to treat them according to that.

If this Menschenbild is built up rather negatively, then I'll treat people like that.

If I believe that customers are nothing but cows, I'm going to treat them like that.

If I believe that humans are sources of creativity and inspiration to art, I'm gonna treat them like that.

The point with copy protections is that i believe that "they want to steal stuff from me". Therefore I act like that and want my stuff being protected.

If someone believes that all people non-US are potential terrorists, then I'll treat them like that. There is no question at all why ALL european flight companies HAVE TO give U.S. government forces the data of EVERY passenger - and not a single one vice versa.
This is, because it is believed that terrorists are nothing but outside of the U.S. . Inside, it's safe.

I can also have the image of humans as … Well, potential robbers, criminals … I'll treat them like that and do everything i can to get my own stuff protected and "them" out of it.
The measures increase with the amount of paranoia.

At one point, this turns into prejudice.

blatantninja June 1st, 2008 22:59

I think it is less prejudice and more paranoia. When a company makes a good game, but it fails commercially, the first thing they often blame is piracy. Although the Titan's Quest guy didn't say that it directly take sales away, he made the point that piracy of the beta versions caused a lot of people not to by the final game, even though the bugs people were complaining about most were fixed in the actual release. I see his point, but I think that it's a bit of grasping at straws as to why the game failed. If you make a great game and advertise it well, it will sell.

blatantninja June 1st, 2008 23:52

5 ways to Fight Piracy

I really liked his ideas in this. I think they are all excellent points. I might disagree with number 4 a bit though. If the game is very popular, the pirates are going to continue to update their hacks. Of course, you're probably making lots of money, so who cares!

I think one of the points that Michael Fitch screwed up in his rant about pirates was that people thought something that was a DRM feature was actually a bug. IMO, it WAS a bug. Not because it caused you to exit the game, but because it didn't make it obvious that it was a DRM feature and not a bug. If I were playing a game and just got randomly kicked out with no explanation, I'd report it as a bug as well. If it flashed up a big "This version of Titan Quest is pirated, game exiting!" you probably would have seen most, if not all, of those 'bug' posts being 'hey it's still DRM'd' posts instead, which would have avoided the bad publicity that he seems to think really ruined the game.

Corwin June 2nd, 2008 00:03

Elwro and others; I've sent off an email to Shamus asking about your problem. That's about all I can do currently.

Dantre June 2nd, 2008 00:49

What is dumb about voting with you dollar, Yeesh? It's well known by now that it is often the ONLY way to make a difference.

Anyway, you might call DRM a 'minor inconvenience', but you would feel differently if it would actually prevent you from playing your legitimate copy. I'm still a bit bitter about not being able to play Runaway 2 for months because of the copy protection (in the end, I was sent a crack by the publishers). Since that time I have developped strong feelings against DRM. It always end up annoying the paying customers, never the pirates.


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