Funcom Drops "Offline" Games

Adventure Gamers has a report based on a Norwegian newspaper article saying that developer Funcom is going to concentrate their future efforts on online games only. The increasingly familiar explanation is PC piracy:
According to Funcom's Trond Arne Aas, there had been over 200,000 illegal downloads of Dreamfall, even before its release last year. Also, he estimates that for each PC game that is sold, between 3 and 10 times as many is stolen, thus resulting in Funcom's decision to stop producing offline PC games.
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50.
 
Re: No subject
Mar 17, 2007, 01:07
50.
Re: No subject Mar 17, 2007, 01:07
Mar 17, 2007, 01:07
 
The downside is that thieving little twats have all but wrecked PC gaming...

Plenty of developers release mediocre and/or unfinished games and expect people to salivate like Pavlov's dogs on release day. When that doesn't happen, piracy is the easy scapegoat. If more developers would hold themselves to account for their mistakes, this would be a much healthier industry.

I think what hurt the industry most was the almost universal adoption of Direct3D at the expense of OpenGL. As much as I dislike their recent games, id Software should be commended for supporting OpenGL. John Carmack understands the importance of choice in this industry and should be respected for that. Developers who march in lockstep with Microsoft because it's the path of least resistance are doing more damage to the industry than they understand.


49.
 
Re: No subject
Mar 16, 2007, 01:00
49.
Re: No subject Mar 16, 2007, 01:00
Mar 16, 2007, 01:00
 
Fortunately for me, that's not a legal choice for you.

Fortunately, the legal choice isn't the only choice. Though, placing the burden of risk on the customer is indeed fortunate for you. I mean, imagine what would happen if developers/publishers were actually held accountable for releasing incomplete, buggy or simply crappy products?

Your choice is simple...buy it, or do without.

Actually, the choices are buy it, pirate it or do without. Remember, legality is not the same as possibility.

In actuality, you don't even have the option to steal -my- work...our games are all online games, and not subject to piracy in any meaningful way.

What games would that be? You have my curiosity tingling.

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48.
 
Re: No subject
Mar 16, 2007, 00:45
48.
Re: No subject Mar 16, 2007, 00:45
Mar 16, 2007, 00:45
 
Of course, since your work offers no guarantees whatsoever, I'm the one who has to take the risk. And what better way to eliminate risk than to play your game in its entirety before buying it?

Fortunately for me, that's not a legal choice for you. Your choice is simple...buy it, or do without. Should you choose to appropriate my work without my agreement, I'll have no qualms whatever about seeing you in court.

In actuality, you don't even have the option to steal -my- work...our games are all online games, and not subject to piracy in any meaningful way. But if I was releasing standalone games, you can bet your ass I'd have no problems emulating the RIAA when it comes to pirates.

47.
 
Re: No subject
Mar 15, 2007, 20:03
47.
Re: No subject Mar 15, 2007, 20:03
Mar 15, 2007, 20:03
 
If you want to benefit from my work, then I expect you to meet my terms, which boil down to $$.

And if you want to benefit from my money, then you need to meet my terms (i.e. making a good game that is complete, polished and has more than 10 hours of gameplay). Of course, since your work offers no guarantees whatsoever, I'm the one who has to take the risk. And what better way to eliminate risk than to play your game in its entirety before buying it?

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46.
 
Re: No subject
Mar 15, 2007, 19:58
46.
Re: No subject Mar 15, 2007, 19:58
Mar 15, 2007, 19:58
 
<< If you want to convince me to stop pirating, stop relying on such nebulous concepts and instead use logic and reasoning. >>

And you blow those off too...so what's the point in wasting bandwidth?

The fact is, as a game developer, I'm not about to say, "Oh, you have every right to pirate my work". If you want to benefit from my work, then I expect you to meet my terms, which boil down to $$. The day people can legally take my work without my agreement is the day I leave the industry altogether. Until then, I would plan to do exactly what I am allowed to do, and I'll be more than happy to see pirates in court.

This comment was edited on Mar 15, 19:59.
45.
 
Re: No subject
Mar 15, 2007, 18:17
45.
Re: No subject Mar 15, 2007, 18:17
Mar 15, 2007, 18:17
 
Its not rocket science, and anyone with a shred of morals understands this. You clearly enjoy stealing stuff, so no rational argument is going to get through to you.

Yes, it isn't rocket science. Simply put, I don't use morality or legality as a basis for my arguments. They are both far too subjective. If something is legal, does that make it "right?" If you believe something is "right," does that mean everyone who believes otherwise is an evil bastard? Throughout history, people have used morality and legality to justify all sorts of terrible things. It's so much easier to just say "That's wrong!" or "That's illegal" instead of forming a thoughtful, logical opinion for yourself.

If you want to convince me to stop pirating, stop relying on such nebulous concepts and instead use logic and reasoning. Refute my points and support your arguments with facts. It isn't rocket science.

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44.
 
Re: No subject
Mar 15, 2007, 16:18
44.
Re: No subject Mar 15, 2007, 16:18
Mar 15, 2007, 16:18
 
And the itunes comparison is out because for 99c I can get a song I'll want to hear again and again for hours of accumulated listening.
The price of a single on iTunes is not really the issue as free is still much cheaper than 99 cents especially if you are downloading hundreds or thousands of songs as those sued by the RIAA supposedly did. The point is simply that almost no one would bother with iTunes if P2P file sharing was as ubiquitous and as harmful to sales as the RIAA would like the public to believe.

Show me the 99c game store?
Yes I would like to see a truely inexpensive PC game download service not the relatively high-priced, bastardized, rental crap we have now. Something with older, full content games (including all movies and music in the original retail releases) that is sold at prices equal to physical copies of the same games sold on eBay and GoGamer AND which won't be unplayable if the service disappears or the game is no longer offered on it.

43.
 
Re: No subject
Mar 15, 2007, 15:50
43.
Re: No subject Mar 15, 2007, 15:50
Mar 15, 2007, 15:50
 
please post more. your sig helps my google rank.
42.
 
copyright?
Mar 15, 2007, 15:06
Kxmode
 
42.
copyright? Mar 15, 2007, 15:06
Mar 15, 2007, 15:06
 Kxmode
 
In the US copyright laws are in dire need of updating. They haven't been updated for the new millennium and digital era. It behooves all Governments to do this or else confusions about what is and is not legal will continue. Personally I operate Game Music Jukebox. I use several factors -- such as fair use and the AHR act -- to justify its existence but even still there's a huge gray area where I'm not 100% sure.

-----
http://www.gamemusicjukebox.com/
http://music.download.com/kxmode
"What does Ramen mean? It means Japanese spaghetti."
Avatar 18786
41.
 
Re: No subject
Mar 15, 2007, 14:48
41.
Re: No subject Mar 15, 2007, 14:48
Mar 15, 2007, 14:48
 
The RIAA is evil even if stealing music is wrong. It would be like a distributor going after game pirates regardless of the interests of the developers. It alienates your target audience.

And the itunes comparison is out because for 99c I can get a song I'll want to hear again and again for hours of accumulated listening. Show me the 99c game store?

-----------------------------------------------
http://www.positech.co.uk - where nostalgia becomes reality.
40.
 
Re: No subject
Mar 15, 2007, 09:52
40.
Re: No subject Mar 15, 2007, 09:52
Mar 15, 2007, 09:52
 
I dont have any trouble with DRM...or the DMCA. why? because I dont steal stuff. Its not complex.
While that is a tangent to the subject of this thread, there are many valid reasons to abhor DRM and the DMCA, but they are complex, and you are too much of a simpleton to understand them. Overly simplistic thinking like yours is what led to the DMCA and why consumers and academics are shackled by it and DRM today.

This comment was edited on Mar 15, 11:16.
39.
 
Re: No subject
Mar 15, 2007, 09:45
39.
Re: No subject Mar 15, 2007, 09:45
Mar 15, 2007, 09:45
 
blah blah yawn yawn teh RIAA is evil *SNOOOOOOOOOOOOOOZEEEEEE*
Maybe you should learn to read instead of snooze. I didn't say that the RIAA is evil. However, it is grossly exaggerating the scope and impact of the problem to its industry just as the PC video game makers are.

This comment was edited on Mar 15, 10:45.
38.
 
Re: No subject
Mar 15, 2007, 09:28
38.
Re: No subject Mar 15, 2007, 09:28
Mar 15, 2007, 09:28
 
blah blah yawn yawn teh RIAA is evil *SNOOOOOOOOOOOOOOZEEEEEE*

I dont have any trouble with DRM, the RIAA, the MPAA or the DMCA. why?

because I dont steal stuff.
Its not complex.
37.
 
Re: No subject
Mar 15, 2007, 09:09
37.
Re: No subject Mar 15, 2007, 09:09
Mar 15, 2007, 09:09
 
I love the fact that even though 2 big name PC developers have recently come out and said piracy is killing PC gaming
I love the fact that these companies have claimed this all before, and yet they continue to enjoy great profits. If unauthorized distribution and use of their products were as prevalent and financially damaging as they like to claim, no one would be profitable in such a market because everyone's games can be copied, distributed, and used without authorization. If the sky were actually falling over this, it would have already fallen because the unauthorized distribution and use of video games is far from a new phenomenon.

The PC game industry's claims on this issue are like the RIAA's on music sharing over P2P networks. If such sharing were so prevalent and destroying legitimate online music sales, iTunes would be a dismal failure.
This comment was edited on Mar 15, 09:20.
36.
 
Re: No subject
Mar 15, 2007, 08:59
36.
Re: No subject Mar 15, 2007, 08:59
Mar 15, 2007, 08:59
 
Even if only one in 5 was a lost sale
That is MUCH too high. Do you honestly believe that 1 in 5 people who acquired an unauthorized copy of the game would have otherwise paid the $50 asking price for it? Anyone will take something if it is free. I would be willing to bet that of those 200,000 unauthorized downloads 1 in 5 of those users did not even play the game. They only downloaded it because it was free and for the reasons described in this story ( http://www.wired.com/news/culture/0,72737-0.html?tw=rss.index ). That certainly supports what a Macrovision-sponsored survey on illegal downloads from two years ago found. The most popular type of such users downloaded anything and everything simply because it was available but actually played none or almost none of it. In essence the downloading for them was the game, and they certainly are not lost sales.

In addition do you also believe that of those 1 in 5 you claim would have bought the game, none of them later bought the game?

I find it awful hard to blame them for wanting to move to an approach where piracy is less of an issue.
With specious reasoning like that I can see why the company would get out of the market. The real question for it is what is its excuse for the poor showing of Anarchy Online? That game is even free to play in some capacity, and yet even most MMO users don't play it and instead play WOW. It looks like Funcom needs to get out of the MMO market too.

This comment was edited on Mar 15, 11:19.
35.
 
Re: No subject
Mar 15, 2007, 08:34
35.
Re: No subject Mar 15, 2007, 08:34
Mar 15, 2007, 08:34
 
well you clearly don't comprehend fuck all about the law, or what is morally right. If there is no demo, no review, no screenshots, (yeah right) of a game, then you do NOT have the right to steal it.
Just dont buy it. LIVE WITHOUT IT.
Its not rocket science, and anyone with a shred of morals understands this. You clearly enjoy stealing stuff, so no rational argument is going to get through to you.
Your not kidding anyone here, only yourself.
34.
 
Re: No subject
Mar 15, 2007, 07:25
34.
Re: No subject Mar 15, 2007, 07:25
Mar 15, 2007, 07:25
 
If a game has no demo, no previews, no reviews, no screenshots, etc... you expect me to blindly go out and buy it?

Is that what you are referring to? If so, you should probably mention the context. The above quote was my direct response to Dreagon's post, in which he said:

Whether there is a demo or not, or no info whatsoever about a game, you are NOT entitled to the game without paying for it.

He was arguing that even if there was no information (including screenshots) or demo for a game, I would not be entitled to play it without buying it first.

My response was naturally one of great disbelief, as the notion of buying anything without any knowledge of it whatsoever is simply absurd.

Reading comprehension is a wonderful thing, my friend.

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33.
 
Re: No subject
Mar 15, 2007, 07:12
33.
Re: No subject Mar 15, 2007, 07:12
Mar 15, 2007, 07:12
 
wow, such cutting insight my friend. shouldn't you be busy downloading pirated games on some wooly justification about the game not having screenshots*?

*still trying to pretend you didnt say that?
32.
 
Re: No subject
Mar 15, 2007, 07:04
32.
Re: No subject Mar 15, 2007, 07:04
Mar 15, 2007, 07:04
 
Sigh. You make it too easy.

Avatar 20715
31.
 
Re: No subject
Mar 15, 2007, 06:51
31.
Re: No subject Mar 15, 2007, 06:51
Mar 15, 2007, 06:51
 
"Obviously, there are downsides to piracy"

no shit sherlock. Try running a software business.
The downside is that thieving little twats have all but wrecked PC gaming, and they have people like you cheerleading their cause.
nice work. I hope you are proud of your achievements.
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