Finally, Someone Talks Common Sense About PC Piracy

Illustration for article titled Finally, Someone Talks Common Sense About PC Piracy

Ubisoft has no idea on the topic of piracy and the PC market. None. It must be embarrassing for lower-downs at the company who do have an idea to have to listen to people like Stanislas Mettra open their mouths.


Thankfully, not everybody in the industry shares that stance. Trevor Longino, from Good Old Games, a retailer of all people, has a more realistic, pragmatic view on the subject.

"By focusing on piracy as the evil enemy of PC gaming", he told GamersMint, "the industry loses sight of two things: first of all, pirates are better at distributing games than many companies are. Why else would someone risk getting malware or a virus on their computer from a torrent, except that they've made it simpler to get a game through pirates than it is through traditional digital distribution? There are definitely things that we can learn from how simple it is to pirate a game compared to purchasing it, installing the client, patching the game, patching the client, activating it, activating the online component, and then-finally!–being able to play."

"Secondly", he adds, "people pirate."

"They do, and you can't stop that. What you can do-what survey after survey shows-is create enough value in the offer of your game that people buy it anyway. Some of the largest sources of traffic on are from torrent trackers and abandonware sites. And you know what? The traffic from these websites converts to purchasers at a better percentage than straight search traffic from Google does. The first exposure these people had to came through illegal free copies of the games we sell, and they found our offer so compelling that they sign up and buy from us."

My first computer, a Commodore 64, was accompanied by a box full of pirated games. There wasn't a day that went by on the schoolyard in the 90s when at least one of my friends wasn't swapping a bundle of 3.5-inch disks. It's been an age-old problem, and always will be, so to pretend it's suddenly only a major problem now, and either introduce busted DRM or not release PC games at all as a result, is defeatist at best and disingenuous at worst.

GoG Breaks Cover – Interview with Good Old Games [GamersMint]

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Frosted Mini-Wheats

I don't think it's a good idea to take such a defeatist attitude towards piracy. You shouldn't just accept that it's going to happen. Then nothing can change. You've gotta try to fix a problem.

I mean. There are poor starving people. There always have been. There always will be. Why bother trying to fight it?

Yes, that's an extreme example, but the mentality here is the same. If a problem hasn't been solved yet then it is unsolvable? Perish the thought!