He who lives by the bit torrent, dies by the bit torrent.
Some players are learning this the hard way as the little bitty studio Greenheart Games are making a big splash in the PC gaming realm with a new game they released Sunday called Game Dev Tycoon. The sim game challenges players to create and develop blockbuster video games from the ground up. It’s actually fairly expansive for being the first release from the fledgeling studio based out of Australia, and players can purchase the game from their website, www.greenheartgames.com, for only $7.99.
Normally we don’t advocate this kind of thing, but there is a cracked version that can be found on various torrent sites and downloaded, but those who choose that route will experience a nasty twist.
Turns out the developers made their own “cracked” version and released it to bit torrent sites, and within minutes their bit torrent client was going full-speed ahead. Turns out there’s some extra code in that version that serves two purposes – the main purpose is to introduce a new element to where those who play the “cracked” version experience financial loss in the form of – wait for it, this is good – Internet pirates.
In wrestling, that’s call a “reversal.”
The piracy starts out small, but as a company becomes more successful, the pirating becomes more aggressive, financially wrecking a player’s company to the point where even AAA titles make exceptionally little profit or none at all. The code was input with intent to hold a mirror to internet thieves, but as the screen shots below (click to enlarge) show, some of these goons are exceptionally smart on computers… and dumb on real life:
Those goons are not alone, though: the second purpose of the code was to track those who pirated the game, and the results are staggering. By the end of the first day, of all the players playing Game Dev Tycoon, 93.6% percent of players were playing an illegal version. Greenheart Games unleashed a scathing but true statement to those who illegally downloaded the game:
If you like the look of Game Dev Tycoon and you want to see more games like these then you should really think about buying a legal copy of the game. The price of the game is reasonable (7.99USD), you get legal copies for Mac, Windows and Linux, free service updates and you can even install the game on a couple of your personal computers.
If you don’t care about all of this and just want to get a cracked and illegal version then we can’t do anything about that, but if years down the track you wonder why there are no games like these anymore and all you get to play is pay-to-play and social games designed to suck money out of your pockets then the reason will stare back at you in the mirror.
Isn’t it nice to know that in a world where Big Brother-esque Digital Rights “Management” procedures punish the whole due to a few idiot pirates, that some game developers really remember who the true bad guys are in this fight?