Submitted by fblan001 874d ago | article

New Study on Video Game Piracy – Farfetched doesn’t even come close.

Fernando Blanco From Electric Avenue said - "Video game makers have long maintained that piracy is a significant problem, and that the illegal downloading of their products represents a major threat to the industry. While it is agreed that illegal downloading is widespread, the data is inconclusive, and sometimes contradictory." (downloadable contents, Industry)

fblan001  +   874d ago
Turns out they've been extrapolating statistics to make the problem seem bigger than it actually is, No surprises there.
DragonKnight  +   874d ago
Of course they have, it's no different than the politicians that link shooting to violent video games as having real world connections and implications.
fblan001  +   874d ago
the problem is not as big as they said and they are not loosing as much money as they claimed, yet games still get prosecuted when they opt for the torrent when they do not have the money to get the real thing.
Unicron  +   874d ago
People should be prosecuted. Despite the findings, it's still stealing. "I don't have the money" isn't a reasonable defense. You are not entitled to play everything just because you want to.
DragonKnight  +   874d ago
@Unicron: I assume you have facts to prove that downloading a torrent physically and permanently removes the game from the developers?
MikeMyers  +   874d ago
"I assume you have facts to prove that downloading a torrent physically and permanently removes the game from the developers?"

How can you? Why should the onus be on them proving they would have bought it if they couldn't get it for free? Piracy does have an impact on sales, how much we will never know. Just because you can't assume they would or they wouldn't have paid for it doesn't mean it's baseless.

What do people get out of defending piracy?
Dark_Overlord  +   873d ago

I think you misunderstood DragonKnight, the definition of stealing is

Taking one persons property so that they themselves do not have it anymore.

So in the case of piracy it IS NOT STEALING, its copyright infringement. Nobody has ever been prosecuted for stealing by downloading a torrent. If you read DragonKnights comment more carefully, you'll see that this is what he meant.

Droidanomix  +   873d ago
Are you really justifying piracy?
"I assume you have facts to prove that downloading a torrent physically and permanently removes the game from the developers?"
I assume you're totally ignorant of the concept of intellectual property. People who might otherwise pay for game but decide not to because they can pirate it are physically stealing something. It's called money. Idiot.
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DragonKnight  +   873d ago
@Droidanomix: "People who might otherwise pay for game but decide not to because they can pirate it are physically stealing something."

Ignorance. Gotta love how foolish it makes people look. Why would someone who doesn't give a damn either way ever pay for a game? A person who is pirating the game is more likely to NOT the game whether or not the game could or could not be pirated in the first place. And how can you physically steal something that doesn't physically exist? Stealing is permanently removing something from the original owner. Piracy is copying, thus the original owner is still in full possession of the item and can still fully sell said item. You are making the assumption that an individual is taking physical possession of money that a developer has, when in actuality the person is not taking anything away at all, and is simply not giving anything either. Dumbass
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MikeMyers  +   873d ago
Why do we have patents if it is just an idea and nothing physical? We have copyright infringements in place because even an idea has value attached to it. Do you think Coca-Cola wants their recipe out there? According to you if someone copied it there would be no harm done because they would still hold the original recipe.

What a bunch of ignorance. Again, why are we defending piracy?
rainslacker  +   874d ago
12.6 million peers over 173 games over a 3 month period seems like a problem to me. That equates to roughly 72K copies per game over a 3 month period. This assumes that each peer was only sharing 1 pirated game...(the report didn't specify). Then of course it also doesn't include all the other games not included in the study.

Yeah I'm sure devs/pubs aren't worried about that kind of thing. /s

@Dragon above

Technically it's copyright infringement.

However according to Wikipedia

"Copyright holders frequently refer to copyright infringement as theft. In copyright law, infringement does not refer to theft of physical objects that take away the owner's possession, but an instance where a person exercises one of the exclusive rights of the copyright holder without authorization. Courts have distinguished between copyright infringement and theft holding."

So basically the pirate isn't stealing a product but taking away(or stealing) one of the usage rights of the original owner of the copyright.
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DragonKnight  +   874d ago
Right, but nothing is permanently removed from the original owner so... yeah.
TwistedMetal  +   874d ago
its not a problem and when you have that info you stop putting your games on the most pirated platform untill that platform puts something in place or you yourself does to prevent it. also if your game got pirated by lets say 100 thousand people but it sold 20 million copies then i dont think you should be crying like a baby. you will never have a 100 percent buy through rate.

also super old now overpriced pre ps2 gen nintendo vc games better not be in this data. people will pirate them old games a milllion times nintendo already got there monies worth from them games in a bazillion re releases. they should be happy people still buy them at all. especiallly since they rip people off with mario 25th anniversary collection with so few mario games and zero editions to so many of the rerelease which they charge high prices for.

you want people to buy your old stuff legitly then give them a reason to.
Anon1974  +   873d ago
I can't speak to the accuracy of these statistics, but I know what my real world experience shows. Our last mobile game, Vex Blocks, which launched for a dollar saw a 95% piracy rate on Android. A free, demo version is available as well.

Let's be absolutely clear. 95% of our users would rather steal the cracked, full version than download the free version or pay us a buck in compensation for the year it took us to make the damn game. The cracked version was up on file sharing sites within hours of launch, and we're just a small indie developer who had no money for marketing. It's not like we could afford to hype the release or pay huge dollars to drive up anticipation. Pirates must simply be watching the store and cracking EVERYTHING that releases.

If even a quarter of the thousands enjoying the game had paid the dollar, we would have been happily working on our next title instead of scrambling to try to find ways to load up the game with ads or in-app purchases to better monetize the 5% of legitimate players so we can try to make enough to pay our bills for the month and feed our families.

I don't count every pirated copy as a lost sale. I don't believe that's true, but when 95% of gamers out there would rather steal, what the hell can you possibly do? Hell, even if the pirates had downloaded the free version, at least it would have helped with the app rankings and given us greater visibility (as game discovery is the single biggest issue that indies face), but they showed they'd rather download the full, cracked version that's loaded with god-knows-what malware then the legitimate free demo.

So take the gamers out there, remove 95% of them and that's the market for your game. Tell me that piracy doesn't affect developers. And PC games are exactly the same. We hear it from developers every day and the pirates are actively driving developers away from platforms like PC and Android. And then they complain about always on DRM, in game ads, or wonder why new releases skip PC altogether.
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rainslacker  +   873d ago
What I see above your comment is a lot of people who seem to think that every game is selling millions of copies, and that those big companies have no reason to complain. Enough to say that losing out on 100K sold is ok against 20 million, despite the fact most big titles still don't break a million. Since I don't know what games were in this study it's hard to say, but even if they sold a million, having an average of 72K pirated copies still amounts to 7% of people playing a game which the dev's worked hard on without paying for it.

When put in perspective like you did...ie. the majority of developers, it's hard to argue that it's hurting the industry. People should keep in mind that it's indie developers like yours which will become the next big thing in the future, but only if they can sustain themselves until they catch that big break. People clamor over how great indie games are now, but still don't understand that piracy hurts them more than the big guys.

BTW..there are a lot of people who just download anything and everything because it's free. I did for a long time myself, and I can't believe how stupid all these arguments for piracy are, and that I was stupid enough to use them.
Anthotis  +   874d ago
There was an article on here recently where an indie developer released a cracked version of his game along with the genuine copy. He found that the vast majority of people playing the game had downloaded the cracked version rather than buying the genuine version.
fblan001  +   874d ago
I see your point still 60 bucs for Devil may cry 5 is way too much. .
DeadIIIRed  +   874d ago
Best part of that story were the people asking the Game Dev Tycoon developers why the game was unbeatable (the cracked version caused their in-game studios to hemorrhage money due to piracy).
Skate-AK  +   874d ago
I read about that. It was awesome. All the pirates were jumping on the forums screaming "Help my games keeps getting pirated and I can't make any money!"
Oh_Yeah  +   874d ago
I bet even more buy used.
ApolloTheBoss  +   874d ago
Even the guy who made Super Meat Boy encouraged piracy. Saying that he'd take any amount of pirates over one return due to disappointment any day.
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ShiftyLookingCow  +   873d ago
Yes the same people who copied the idea from another studio.
joeorc  +   874d ago
what this person fail's to take into account
"he study concluded that previously released data tended to exaggerate the scale of the problem, but that illegal file sharing of video games was nevertheless prevalent. Microsoft and Sony are currently preparing the release of their next generation of consoles, which are expected to include a raft of new anti-piracy safeguards."

Is the factor of venture capitalists are the one's writing the check so as to get these iP's done for the consumer!

you can have all the download data , and explain how its blown way out of blown way out of proportion, wrap it up in a tight lil bow if you want . and it still does not take away from the fact that if there is more software that you have spent investing in and it ends up in more hands than the sales of retail or Downloaded copy's, than that is a problem for some venture capitalists. Than you have to pitch the idea again to new venture capitalists and Hope they invest. After a while they than cut your budget so as to gather more ROI because they expect the project to be done with less money because "the consumer does not care to pay for it anyway" so why invest into it if they will just dump the content online and the people will not care about the quality anyway because its not worth a purchase.

vicious circle is what it is
uuaschbaer  +   874d ago
Enter sanctimonious gaming bloggers: "RPG Genre Dying Because of Piracy"
rainslacker  +   874d ago
I wonder if the higher numbers for RPG's was because older RPG's are hard to find at retail. Hell sometimes newer ones are too. Older good RPG's also tend to have inflated prices on the after market...like Xenoblade Chronicles for instance.

While anecdotal, it seems that RPG gamers do buy games, but if it's not easy to find them, then I can see why they turn to piracy. Either that or there is a group of RPG gamers who are scummy free-loaders.
admiralvic  +   873d ago
Well RPG's are an exception for a number of reasons...

1) Some of the most iconic games are from that genre.
2) Since so many of these games are iconic, they tend to actually have value (like Rainslacker was getting it) and in some cases are pretty rare. Like if I wanted to play a copy of Earthbound, I could either try to find a working one (taking all the time and risks involved) and easily pay over $100 dollars for it or I can simply download a rom. Since the company literally can't make a cent from my purchase, I doubt anyone would look down on me for "stealing" it. That can also be said for a LOT of RPG's out there.
3) A lot of these games stay in Japan and never even get a chance to release here.
4) Plenty of RPG's released by Atlus and NISA have proven to be fairly rare and uncommon to see in stores. I don't think I've ever seen a copy of Mugen Souls in a retail store, much like I rarely see copies of any of the Neptunia games. Fire Emblem, the Wii RPG's and several others are also pretty rare and unfortunately result in people pirating them.
StockpileTom  +   874d ago
Demos... where have the demos gone? I bet that would at least slightly cut down on piracy...
DragonKnight  +   874d ago
Apparently demos hurt sales.
StockpileTom  +   874d ago
Hahahahah with the quality of many of the games I see today demos probably would hurt the sales. If demos are hurting their sales then maybe they should fix the source of the problem not blame the demos...
DarkZane  +   874d ago
Piracy isn't even a problem. The great majority of pirates wouldn't buy the games anyway.

When they say for example that a game has been pirated 500,000 times, I bet not even 10000 of those would even buy the game if they couldn't pirate it.
HeavenlySnipes  +   874d ago
Regardless, its the reason there are few AAA single player only games for the PC. The ones that are AAA like Assassin's Creed and such usually have massive amounts of DRM. Why?

Pirates can literally crack and distribute the game THE DAY that it comes out and as long as your system could run the game in the first place, you can simply download and play. Its why devs are embracing always online even for single player games.

The argument that people that pirate wouldn't buy anyway is stupid. Do you expect someone to buy something they can get for free anonymously?

There is a reason the biggest genres on the PC are online shooters, MMOs and MMORPGs. From battlefield to warcraft to starcraft etc
xBigxBossx  +   873d ago
Hmm an article written by a thief trying to justify his actions. Stealing is stealing. No questions. You wouldn't just walk into GameStop grab a game and walk out without the fear of being arrested. So instead one hides behind a keyboard and does the exact same thing and thinks he is justified.
uuaschbaer  +   873d ago
Exactly, like I said to my kid with his hand in the cookie jar: "In Saudi Arabia they cut off that hand for that, or your head. Why should I treat you differently? Thief."
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despair  +   873d ago
bad analogy, there is no missing product and you cannot determine if the perpetrator was ever intending on buying the product in the first place.

Its digital, imagine if 100 million people who would never buy a game and noone knew about them were downloading new titles at their release through torrents. Who gets hurt and how, if these people are never seen or heard from or never buy games in the first place. I'm not saying that's what it is for all pirates but its never straightforward.

People like to say "stealing is stealing" but nothing is black and white and its not remotely that simple. I pirated games for many years for PC because I couldn't afford to buy them(still bought console games though) in my country at retail, too expensive. Then steam came out and I found a platform to purchase my games cheaply and easily with no padded costs and tonnes of discounts.

But many of the games I pirated I ended up buying for a couple bucks on steam just because it was soo cheap and I wanted them again, did I really steal from the game developers?
xBigxBossx  +   870d ago
Its not a bad analogy. Obviously you steal games and don't have a problem with it. The box and disc are not the expensive part lol. That is just for us the consumers. The expensive part is the thing you illegally downloaded. Go get a job so you can afford your hobby. Obviously you have enough money to have a decent PC, and a console.

No matter how you put it you are still stealing. I seriously doubt the majority of people who pirate games go out and pay full price for a game they already stole and own.

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