Trials Dev Pirated Its Own Game to Drive Interest

Illustration for article titled Trials Dev Pirated Its Own Game to Drive Interest

RedLynx, the developer of the well received downloadable title Trials, said that it seeded pirate torrent sites with neutered copies of the game in order to stoke interest in the title.

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According to GamesIndustry.biz, Tero Virtala, the RedLynx CEO, said that the pirated version his team sent out did not include leaderboard support, which Virtala called the "soul" of the game. In other words, the pirate version functioned as a kind of demo without being a demo, encouraging downloaders to grab the fully enabled version if they enjoyed the illicit one.

"Piracy is here, so how can we take advantage of that? What we did actually, on day one, we put that game immediately on all the torrent networks ourselves," Virtala said at the Develop Liverpool conference.

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The 150,000 copies the game has sold since its launch matches the number of users with access to the leaderboards, Virtala said, so if the gambit didn't work, at least it didn't hurt. "At least people have not cracked our leaderboards yet," he said.

RedLynx: We put Trials PC Game on Torrent Sites [GamesIndustry.biz]

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DISCUSSION

peacefuloutrage-old
peacefuloutrage

I think this is an awesome idea, users get an extended look (I hate crappy demos) without the guilt, and the Trials team gets a ton of exposure.

I laugh how XBL Indie game developers complain MS doesn't advertise for them. This is the real world! Here is a developer that has spent more than $100 in tools is taking a risk. If your game is reasonably good, run contests with blogs and game sites for free copies of the game. As cheap as Indie games are, $100 is at least 20 games, with you keeping money on the back end. Get exposure yourself. Otherwise don't complain when MS takes most of the proceeds. Unless of course they piggyback a popular game and "advertise it" just to eat profits. Then they would be asshats.

Edited because I obviously didn't proof-read. :P