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Piracy versus PC Gaming

Next Generation recaps a GDC talk titled "The Videogame Piracy Problem: Fifteen Men on a Dead Manís Chest" by id Software CEO Todd Hollenshead about the impact of piracy on the game industry. They outline how Mr. Hollenshead says the estimated $3 billion economic loss caused by piracy in 2004 does not include piracy that takes place on the Internet. There is also an article about this talk on Joystiq that focuses on the statement that piracy is a factor in id's embrace of consoles, quoting Todd as saying "Piracy has pushed id as being multiplatform." On a related note, Can PC Gaming Survive in a Console World (thanks Digg) recaps a panel discussion on the topic that brought up a similar point:

Part of the problem is piracy. Big titles get stolen by cyber thieves, and it hurts revenue. "The market," said Capps, "that would buy a $600 video card knows how Bittorrent works."

Does that mean casual games, which exponentially outsell what PC gaming traditionalists think of as A-list titles, will one day rule? Hilleman made a point: casual is a poor choice of words. The average player on EA's Pogo "casual" game network plays "for 24 hours a week. There's nothing casual about that."

There is some light in the PC gaming world. World of Warcraft, for instance, is a massive hit, and the upcoming Spore looks not only creative and different, but promising. The MMO and other social networking games could become the norm for PC gaming, with big-ticket titles growing rarer with each passing year. Johnson added that MMOs are "successful because you can't pirate WoW. You cannot pirate an MMO. Period." Therefore, he said, "game design on the PC is going to bend toward persistence."

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337. Re: Problem with anti piracy measures Mar 17, 2007, 09:12 mOOzilla
 
So what if they churn out shit, dont buy it then and definately dont steal it then. Its their business, if they want to run it into the ground thats fine by me. Why lose sleep over it? I dont. If I buy a shitty game that means I have not asked around, read the reviews and played the demo.

Word of mouth is a big player in game purchases. If a game is shit, then you hear about it quickly.

If a game is great it sells great, buy it and definately dont steal it.

Games are going Vista for top end visuals, fine by me, I wont be on Vista. Thats their choice, when they pull the plug on Dx9 (which wont be for many years to come given a lot of engines support back to Dx7 still today) fine by me, I wont be on Vista.

I dont give any company any sympahty. 99% dont deserve it and I am not going to waste my health with worry over some corporate "entity".

Its like my reply to the CEO of Bohemia games, I bluntly just told him I dont give a rats bottom if his company fails or suceeds, It wont succeed with my money, he cried that SecurROM was the only alternetive. I suggested Steam. The ball is in his park, end of the day I dont give a shit, its just a game, if he doesnt want to go down that road then fine, I wont be on his road he is driving down, it may well be empty. Its his company, not mine, he can do with it as he pleases, its the same with my money, I can do with it as I please. He wants it, I got it. He has to jump through MY hoops to get it, not the other way around.


This comment was edited on Mar 17, 09:17.
 
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336. Re: Problem with anti piracy measures Mar 16, 2007, 19:40 wtf_man
 
Of course the crisis of PC gaming isn't ONLY due to piracy, but the amount of punks in here who think it's got nothing to do with it at all simply amazes me, especially when they go on and at the same time bash consoles, console- and mainstream games and then wonder why their own games "suck" and why there are hardly PC-exclusive games anymore.

1st... I'm not a punk... I'm probably older than you. I've been using computers (not dumb terminals) since the mid-70's (Before there were even personal computers available to the general public).

2nd... I don't think any of us were claiming that "piracy doesn't hurt" or is not "a factor".

That said... there is a lot of things the industry (PC games industry specifically) has done to slit it's own fucking throat and market. Some of us have stated that we have very little pity, because we have been screaming about the problems for ages... but the developers and publishers ignore us... and keep churning out SHIT.

That's not to say all games are shit... but most of them are. The QA sucks (badly), the customer service sucks, and they limit their target market by cutting off the lower end hardware (not necessarily integrated graphics low end, but even budget level low end), that a majority of the market has as an install base.

Then you get an asinine statement from Todd Hollenshead (and other developers) blaming the decision to go "multi-platform" entirely on Piracy.

That's bull fuckin' shit, my friend. Pure and simple. Again... none of us that are legit purchasers, yet complaining of the state of things, are saying Piracy isn't a problem... We're saying "fix your shit first, before you get high and mighty and blame everything related to poor sales on Piracy".

THEN some sympathy may be in order.

Wasting all that effort and money going after hindering the pirates, just takes even MORE away from producing a decent flippin' PC Game. Produce GOOD games FIRST (and they always sell well, regardless of the piracy situation)... THEN go after hindering Pirates. Quit fuckin' us legitimate purchasers over, then pointing the finger at pirates.

 
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335. Re: Problem with anti piracy measures Mar 16, 2007, 07:40 mOOzilla
 
Everything they have that can make money and drive Vista sales.


This "Games for Windows" branding drive is for the Vista sales push, nothing else.

Why do you think their XBox "Live" is only on Vista. To push Vista sales again.

As far as MSFT is concerned Vista is the only SKU of client side Windows existing, XP is in all but name dead.
This comment was edited on Mar 16, 07:41.
 
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334. Re: Problem with anti piracy measures Mar 16, 2007, 05:37 General Ego
 
Microsoft is back porting Xbox games to the PC in order to drive Vista sales with DX10 exclusivity.

What else besides Halo 2?


This comment was edited on Mar 16, 05:38.
 
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333. Cattle herd effect Mar 16, 2007, 02:34 mOOzilla
 
They followed the cattle herd to consoles because the people flocked to the consoles.

PC gamers are really tiny in comparisson to consoles.

I blame OpenGL for pretty much giving up on the gaming market.

Sure PlayStation uses OGL but so does the Mac and Linux and PC's but with XBox DirectX is the only show in town for Xbox/PC now as game engine developers capatilise on that.

What we need is Apple to get serious into gaming then that would be a HUGE catalyst for getting OpenGL back in vogue.

Lets not forget that console makers can practically pay a huge subsidy for big name titles in order to increase sales of the hardware via exclusivity.

Game houses slap this up big time. No PC maker does this.

Console maker subsidies are killing PC gaming.

The only way games are comming to the PC that exist on consoles are subsidised by Microsoft in order to drive Vista sales via DX10 exclusivity.


This comment was edited on Mar 16, 02:39.
 
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332. Always bet on Greed! Mar 15, 2007, 17:58 Toxic_Metal
 
The only consoles I owned were the old NEs and Sega'Saturn.

Then I discovered PC games.

Back in 1999/2000 was the best time to be a PC gamer.

QUAKE III , Half-Life, Planescape Tormnent, Homeworld, Thief, System Shock 2, Dungeon Keeper 2, Fallout 2 and Alpha Centauri were released that year. With BG2, Carmageddon and Deus Ex the following year. Just to name a few.

Quality. Innovation and quantity.

Its 2007 A.D. ... what happened?

Imho, Microsoft are largely to blame for the gutting of PC Gaming with the release of XBox.

And Developers are blowing millions on flashy graphics for boring games. We PC gamers are then supposed to upgrade, spending mucho $$$ to be able to play buggy, incomplete and boring games, rushed for release. It's a vicious cycle.

These same Devs then complain that they can't make ends meet. And its all because of Piracy(tm).

LOL! Tell me another one.



The 'Future' of 'Gaming' is 'Pay to Play'. Fuck that.


This comment was edited on Mar 15, 18:20.
 
* * * * * *
Their freedom was taken away as they crashed . . .
-- "So Long, and thanks for all the fish..."
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331. Re: Problem with anti piracy measures Mar 15, 2007, 17:18 [VG]Reagle
 
lol this thread is great.

what youll all forgetting is the piracy didnt screw the gaming industry.

The complexity of keeping your machines up to date did.
 
Avatar 8515
 
I am MUCH MUCH MUCH MUCH MUCH MUCH MUCH better now.
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330. Re: Problem with anti piracy measures Mar 15, 2007, 09:13 mOOzilla
 
Microsoft is back porting Xbox games to the PC in order to drive Vista sales with DX10 exclusivity.

 
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329. Re: Problem with anti piracy measures Mar 15, 2007, 04:34 General Ego
 
mOOzilla, my comment was obviously not aimed at you but at the retards who claim they have to test a game for days to see if it's worth a purchase, the morons who claim piracy doesn't hurt (or even: does help) PC gaming and the idiots who claim it's all the game developers' and publishers' fault and that they are lying through their teeth anyway. Of, I forgot, of course they're all filthy rich and are just waiting to screw us poor PC gamers over in order to get more Ferraris.

Of course the crisis of PC gaming isn't ONLY due to piracy, but the amount of punks in here who think it's got nothing to do with it at all simply amazes me, especially when they go on and at the same time bash consoles, console- and mainstream games and then wonder why their own games "suck" and why there are hardly PC-exclusive games anymore. Personally I had a lot of fun with PC games lately, even though the releases are less frequent I don't see an extraordinary drop in quality like the people who use the "all current games suck, hence they're not worth buying" excuse.

Normal business sense... you say... I don't give a shit what the beancounters "sense"

All I know is that original PC franchises get ported to XBOX,
then ported back to PC. E.g: DE:IW & Thief3. Effectively killing the franchise.

In some cases (e.g: CoD3,Crimson Skies,Midtown Madness) a sequel to PC series is console only. WTF!!!

PC games != Console games.

See, this condescending attitude does not help at all, and you not giving a shit is part of the problem. You give a shit about the people making your games, and you give a shit about the people paying for the development of your games, yet you want the absolute best gaming experience, tailored to your hardcore gamer niche market, for as little money as possible, but of course with the highest production values to put your new D3D10 video card and quad-core CPU to the test - see what's wrong with this? Simply put, you cannot ignore the beancounters as they're the ones who decide about funding your precious PC games - or not. They don't give a flying fuck about the purity of PC franchises, if porting to (or primarily developing for) consoles lets them more reliably sell games, they will go for it, regardless of your feelings. Game companies are not a charity and just because some people in the PC scene have this irrational hatred for anything console, doesn't mean every change to make your once hardcore PC franchise a bit more mainstream-friendly is bad.

So, you wonder why some games were moved from PC-exclusive to console-exclusive or at least cross-platform with PC being the "afterthought" consoles once were. The developers of prime PC-based franchises give you a reason why they cannot afford to exclusively develop for PCs anymore. Yet it seems the oh-so-superior and allegedly more intelligent PC gamers cannot grasp the idea that developers don't work for free. Instead, what we get is shitheads arguing semantics and numbers, trying to justify piracy with horrible reasoning and attacking the people WHO MAKE YOUR FUCKING GAMES. Awesome.
 
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328. Re: Problem with anti piracy measures Mar 14, 2007, 18:57 Toxic_Metal
 
Normal business sense... you say... I don't give a shit what the beancounters "sense".

All I know is that original PC franchises get ported to XBOX,
then ported back to PC. E.g: DE:IW & Thief3. Effectively killing the franchise.

In some cases (e.g: CoD3,Crimson Skies,Midtown Madness) a sequel to PC series is console only. WTF!!!

PC games != Console games.
 
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327. Re: Problem with anti piracy measures Mar 14, 2007, 17:37 Nighthawk
 
Just at a glance, half those games are available for PC...they didn't get dedicated to console. The Dev's just added another market...it makes normal business sense.


 
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326. Re: No subject Mar 14, 2007, 15:34 Tigger
 
This thread has turned into Attack Of The Warez Monkey...

Isn't that the fucking truth.
 
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325. Re: Problem with anti piracy measures Mar 14, 2007, 14:57 Masa
 
Right now there is little or no risk in using copy-protection because the company can tell mOOzilla to fuck off since it already has his money.

Righty-o you are. It is in my righteous opinion (lol!) that the PC games industry has choked itself in apathy. Maybe being held to a higher standard as you described would also mean better games.

I'm not saying that sort of apathy doesn't exist in console games (as I am a fairly staunch defender of the platform), but being as there are far more numerous offerings available, your chances as finding the "gems" are considerably higher.

 
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324. Re: OMG Mar 14, 2007, 13:27 mOOzilla
 
ZOMG Ponies!

Gotta love the state of gaming today. I go onto BF2 and when you actually try to do something, all the kids start screaming "Its against the rules its against the rules", uhh if the game allows it, do it is my thinking. Cant stand the heat, get out of the kitchen

Arcady games today sucks because it brings out the idiots.

Its turned games into a large battle of vote kicking non stop.

Games in the main are rubbish. Very few gems.

This comment was edited on Mar 14, 13:29.
 
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323. OMG Mar 14, 2007, 13:07 Tigger
 
This whole thread reminds me of that poor bastard who got banned off Steam for cheating. Anyone remember that?

He got banned for using a hack he claimed he didn't have only to provide a screenshot that showed the hack on his desktop.
 
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322. Re: Problem with anti piracy measures Mar 14, 2007, 12:33 mOOzilla
 
Uhh Im a PAYING customer, not a thief.

I assume you are directing your comments to the other idiots who try to justify theft.

The only reason the PC still has games is because of the Xbox and DirectX. It is not an overly difficult job to design it for both platforms.

I have seen PC shelf space disappear in some stores, some computer stores have literally dropped the PC game shelf, and I dont blame them. Their main competition is from the online retailers such as www.play.com for good reason, competition.

I welcome the day when I can instantly purcahse games and play them after downloading. I would like this to be a common agreed standard if possible. Today the main contenders are Steam and Microsoft Live. I just wish they would bang their heads together and come up with a standard solution of activation, downloading, mangement, payment.

Knowing Microsoft they will come up with Live points like they did with Zune points. Totally out of touch.

Branson is aiming to take on this market, perhaps he will bring it closer to this ideal.

This comment was edited on Mar 14, 13:06.
 
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321. Re: Problem with anti piracy measures Mar 14, 2007, 07:41 Toxic_Metal
 
take away your favourite franchises and move them to consoles. And it's all the fault of the greedy rich pusblisher bastards and the incompetent game developers

PC ========> XB0X/C0ns0le
--------------------
Deus Ex --> DX:IW
Thief1/2 --> T3
Ghost Recon--> GRAW/2
Call of Duty-> CoD 3
RainbowSix --> R6:Vegas
GTA1/2 --> GTA3/SA/4?
Sacred --> Sacred2
LOTR:BMFE --> LOTR:BFME2
C&C:RedAlert-> C&C 3
NeedforSpeed-> NFS:U/HP/Carbon
UT2003/4 --> UT2007
CrimsonSkies-> CS:HRtR
Midtown Madness1/2-->Midtown Madness 3

Fallout1/2 --> FOBOS/FO3

Always bet on greed.
 
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320. Re: Problem with anti piracy measures Mar 14, 2007, 06:22 General Ego
 
man, this thread really makes me sad and I suddenly understand why people from within the industry, like MikeR, stopped posting on the topic on ShackNews...

I'm not one to get angry over internet discussions, but this is just way outta line, I can't believe so many folks calling themselves hardcore gamers and then piss on the people who make their games, dismiss their reasoning with ridiculous assumptions and accusations, and have the nerve to claim they're helping. WTF?

You retards exactly deserve whatever the industry is turning into, you deserve Madden 666, Need for Speed 42 and Battlefield 1337, even if you will only pirate them because they're "not worth buying", but it annoys the heck out of me that so many people here are actively helping to ruin my hobby which looked so great 10 years ago. It annoys me how you justify your actions with total horseshit reasons and even claim it's all someone else's fault, and you even think you're all that smart and reasonable.

You're not. You goddamn punks act all high and mighty when you make fun of the few generally successful PC games like "The Sims" (lolol, kiddie/girl game), MMOs and the growing casual games market, you discuss with fervour and anger how PC games are "dumbed down" and "consolized", you bitch and moan when publishers turn to closed platforms and take away your favourite franchises and move them to consoles. And it's all the fault of the greedy rich pusblisher bastards and the incompetent game developers who only make shitty games not worth buying anymore so you HAVE TO pirate them to teach them, or to try them because there's NO WAY IN HELL you can judge a game without playing through it three times first. What a bunch of hypocrites, and you claim "mainstream gamers" are dumb? HA.

You guys are a fucking shame.
 
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319. Re: Problem with anti piracy measures Mar 13, 2007, 16:20 mOOzilla
 
Perhaps because I am not the "customer" of SecurROM?

Technically I am the customer of the retail store if we want to nit pick.

The download manager issue I rasised was a valid one. Product activation is less intrusive than disc protection. It is less prone to failure and less dependant on controlling my machine. Using their download managers just depoy other protections that would also fail on my machine, and also the issue of locale.

The game support is normally provided by the publisher/developer, in this case, they dont want to help with the product they ship, securrom are protection enabling devices, the developer/publisher enables it and ships it.

How about I sell you a car, with built in alarm, but I direct you to the manufacturer of the alarm for help if it goes wrong? No you would bloody well demand that help from the car dealer / manufacturer wouldnt you.

Apply your method to games, say they license a physics SDK, a game engine, an auidio engine and protection and a few dozen other API's. What if you had a sound problem in the game, "Im sorry sir, we use supplier A's audio APIs in our game, please contact them for audio support". "I also have this problem with screen clipping", "Ok sir, please contact OGL or Microsoft as we use their API's" and god heaven forbit if you have more than one issue! Thats just too funny.

Take it up with SecurRom? Dont be stupid, they would insist I remove my existing software in order for theirs to run, or they would say contact the game publisher. I am not SecurRom's customer.

What if they go a step further and start disabling software that they determine as a piracy method? They have already wrongly assumed I run Daemon Tools v4 according to their message! What if in future they disable firewalls, anti virus scanners etc?

I did fix it, I downloaded a crack to disable the CD check.

Well, I hope you enjoy your life of shuffling CD's.

The future is a common activation service.

This comment was edited on Mar 13, 16:38.
 
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318. Re: Problem with anti piracy measures Mar 13, 2007, 15:54 Bhruic
 
That also doesnt help me with the product I have in my hand now does it

Don't be an idiot. You're the one that brought up the whole "download manager" issue, not me.

I got a reply from the CEO today, and he said take it up with SecurROM

Well here's an absolutely brilliant idea then... Why not take it up with SecurROM? Before going on a whining rant about how it doesn't work for you, how about actually trying to fix it?

This comment was edited on Mar 13, 15:55.
 
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