With experience on both the PC and Xbox 360, Fable studio Lionhead is well aware of the pitfalls of both platforms. And feels one pitfall is deeper than the other.
"Piracy these days on PC is probably less problematic than second-hand sales on the Xbox," Lionhead's Mike West told Eurogamer. "I've been working on PC games for many years and piracy is always a problem. There are a lot of honest people out there as well, and if they like your game they'll buy it."
Saying that any sales Lionhead makes on the PC version of the 2010 role-playing game are a "bonus", West adds "For us it's probably a no-lose even with piracy as it is. But, as I say, second-hand sales cost us more in the long-run than piracy these days."
That's an easy one to calculate. A game pirated does not automatically equate to a game stolen, because there's no guarantee the culprit would ever have bought it in the first place. But a pre-owned sale? That's a definite purchase, where money changed hands and a physical copy of a game went home with somebody. And not a cent of that makes its way back to a developer or publisher.
Lionhead: Pre-owned worse than PC piracy [Eurogamer]