Project Zomboid Stricken By Pirates

By Brendan Caldwell on June 20th, 2011 at 11:02 am.

Bob Smith is Quintin's uncle.

And thus continued the saga of sadness known as poor Project Zomboid.  Over the weekend, developer The Indie Stone removed the game from their website after they discovered that pirates had developed a version that can update itself. This means trouble. Here are some words that they said in a blog post:

“These ‘auto updating’ versions of the game could screw us completely. We have a cloud based distribution model, where the files are copied all over the world and are served to players on request, which means we are charged money for people downloading the game.”


This is serious business. Or a serious lack of business. Up until now, Indie Stone has been willing to look the other way should pirates run away with some booty. But they emphasise that this was only potential sales. It didn’t actually cost them any money. Now, I can imagine they’re feeling a little miffed.

They still don’t know exactly how much it would cost them to allow the pirates to march on, unhindered. But they’ve taken the game down anyway. You can’t blame them really. Considering their luck.

Ah, but The Indie Stone is a brave-faced stone. They’ve released a limited demo in the meantime to attract some attention and mean there’s still something to play while the full version remains offline.

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116 Comments »

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  1. torchedEARTH says:

    Some people obviously have no sense of right and wrong and should burn in hell.

    On a brighter note, the demo is awesome and I heartily recommend it!

    • Premium User Badge

      FunkyB says:

      “Some people obviously have no sense of right and wrong and should burn in hell”
      I assume this is either tongue-in-cheek or irony yes? ;)
      Is this kind of story an argument for DRM? I don’t know if it is or not, I can’t reconcile the dilemma in my mind. I feel sorry for the devs, but I also feel sorry for the gamers when DRM is added. Argrh!

    • Jumwa says:

      Some people have no sense of proportion or scope either, I guess.

    • Bilbo says:

      Some people are passionate about indie developers, and get pissed off enough when the rats think it’s okay to fuck them over in the traditional manner of stealing their game – stealing their game AND mugging them off into the bargain is really bad

    • Jumwa says:

      I don’t think a rational person could claim that theft is deserving of eternal torture, however.

    • Thants says:

      I don’t think a rational person could claim that any crime is deserving of eternal torture, but that’s a whole other argument.

    • Jumwa says:

      I figured I’d start small in the discussion, Thants, work my way up. : )

    • johnpeat says:

      “Some people obviously have no sense of right and wrong and should burn in hell.”

      Careful with that irony bomb, Eugene…

    • Bilbo says:

      It’s called hyperbole and we *all* do it.

      Just tried the tech demo. I… hope the beta has a bit more to it. “You were killed by the tutorial messages stopping” isn’t particularly satisfactory.

    • Thants says:

      People who use hyperbole are worse then Hitler!

    • DiamondDog says:

      It’s fun to take what people say literally. Makes it easier to bash ‘em.

    • Jumwa says:

      I dunno, isn’t there a law pending approval that would punish all IP violations with double eternal damnation?

    • Premium User Badge

      AndrewC says:

      I hate hyperbole because it’s one of those words I’d only ever encountered on page, not spoken, and so pronounced it hyper-bowl and when i said it out loud people laughed at me, like when Naomi calls it Vers-aitch in Showgirls and i felt really bad.

    • Bilbo says:

      Aww. I feel a little bad for using it now, and dredging up that difficult memory for you.

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      john_silence says:

      I believe Jumwa points the way to a brighter future, one where we only ever express our discontent in a strictly adequate, congruous manner. Hyperbole is dangerous, once you authorize it anything becomes possible, anyone will start saying anything on the Internet!

      I hereby pledge to hereon refrain from swearing and shouting. I also urge RPS to use *** in order to protect its community from ugly words such as fuck, cocksucker, dick, and any exaggerated use of those, or any and all disproportionate manifestation of annoyance.

      FunkyB is also right, the only interesting thing about this story is that maybe an indie developer will consider using unobtrusive DRM instead of getting ripped off and ruined by pirates, their entire project cancelled – but protecting their content means such a bother for us customers, right? Hell FunkyB, one of these days we may even have to install Steam, and that paves the way to a cavity search every time we press Play!

    • Alien426 says:

      I don’t think a rational person believes in hell or eternal torture.

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      AndrewC says:

      Odd: I consider hell to be a world ruled by the empty perfection of reason.

    • The Great Wayne says:

      Welcome to… well… I wouldn’t say “the Internet”, nor “the modern world” because it would be to limitative.

      Let’s settle for “welcome to reality”, and leave it at that. Seriously, sense of right and wrong ? don’t we know already that only the strong survive ?

    • Bilbo says:

      I think rather than blindly taking everything people say at face value whenever it suits us, and then using said lack of respect for the general rules of semantics and language to imply the other party is a stupid god-botherer, which is useful because they have a different opinion on “insert gaming topic of the day here” to us but we’d rather not discuss the subject too carefully because that requires thought, we could just internally moderate eachothers’ figurative language in the spirit of equal opportunity. If someone says “burn in hell” they just as rightly mean “fuck off” which just as rightly means “I grow weary of your company, and wish an end to it as a matter of urgency”.

      Then you can just pick a stage on that scale depending on how much of an insufferable pedant you are and press the issue itself instead. And then you can fuck off to hell, etc.

      That said, the whole “pirates are good” “pirates aren’t good” thing is never a satisfactory road to go down, so we should probably just call eachother names instead in the name of brevity

    • Bilbo says:

      Not that I have much business accusing people of disrespecting the rules of language. I mean, take a look at that first sentence. I think a spellchecker would take the coward’s way out and punch its own ticket were it presented with that mess.

    • Nick says:

      “I don’t think a rational person believes in hell or eternal torture.”

      Smug atheists are as bad as over enthusiastic religious types. If not worse.

      Also Bilbo is the voice of sanity right there.

    • Ergates_Antius says:

      Is it worth pointing out that smug atheists don’t fly planes into builds? Or would that been too obvious?

    • Mad Hamish says:

      Being smug is a crime for which you should burn in eternal hellfire!

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      Thermal Ions says:

      @AndrewC
      Not sure whether to laugh or feel bad for you at having admitted to sitting through Showgirls ;)

    • psyk says:

      If the group/person who released the game just released the updates themselves instead of rinsing the devs of cash then hell might be to much but to slowly kill a company you have given no money to is wrong.

      On the other hand what other pirated games can you use auto update with out getting blacklisted?

    • ScubaMonster says:

      You guys are kind of dumb. I’m sure he was super serious about pirates burning in hell. It’s basically a figure of speech to vent his frustration. I’m sure you’ve never said you wish someone/something would burn in hell or an equally vitriolic statement. Get over yourselves and quit trying to be some clever hipsters.

    • ScubaMonster says:

      @Alien426: “I don’t think a rational person believes in hell or eternal torture.”

      You realize that’s a form of intolerance against someone’s beliefs, which is probably the same thing you accuse religious people of doing. Two sides of the same coin.

    • Meneth says:

      “You realize that’s a form of intolerance against someone’s beliefs, which is probably the same thing you accuse religious people of doing. Two sides of the same coin.”
      It’s roughly as intolerant as saying “I don’t think a rational person believes the moon landing was faked.”, seeing as the level of evidence for either is roughly the same.

    • Kdansky says:

      Tolerance is voluntary.
      Respect is earned.

      I have neither for people who close their eyes in front of reality, and neither should you.

    • The Great Wayne says:

      @Meneth: actually, if I had to take one which seems the most plausible, I’d root for the fake moon landing.

      Appart from that, what kdansky said. The whole “let’s respect people beliefs just for the sake of it” story is an open door to a shitload of shenanigans, and we clearly don’t need that right now (coherence over diversity, anyday. Scientific-proof reality is a good consensus, or at least the best we got, and religions don’t fit in that picture, sry)

      That said, I – too – don’t think the OP is clearly refering to a first level religious curse, more like a general idea. But he’s wrong nonetheless. So let’s just agree on that.

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      Tagert says:

      @Ergates_Antius
      You’re right, they didn’t. An atheistic regime did kill several million people though. (See: Joseph Stalin)

      ;) I’m agnostic myself and have no problem with people who hold religious beliefs, or atheists. So long as they don’t try to prove how superior they are.

    • malkav11 says:

      It isn’t an argument for DRM, no. DRM isn’t effective. It never has been. Ultimately, if the pirates want your game – and they do, no matter what it is – they’ll get it. But like they said, usually pirate versions at worst cost potential sales, which simply isn’t worth fussing about. What is a good idea is making sure pirate versions don’t use your own paid bandwidth, and presumably there should be some way to do that on the back end without ever messing with the rights of legitimate users.

    • RegisteredUser says:

      They could just opt for P2P distribution of updates and burden their users with it.
      Given the base assumption that everyone is a pirate anyhow, may as well have them use their DSL powers for good.

  2. MeestaNob says:

    That really sucks for them, hopefully there is a kind company out there that will do the hosting for them for nothing.

    These guys really need to catch a break.

    • johnpeat says:

      Every wonder if that’s the entire point of this ‘story’? Maybe??

      Could bring-in a whole new type of developer here – below ‘indie’ there will be ‘digital hobo’, developing their magnum opus under the arches, only needing donations for booze…

  3. Gnoupi says:

    I tried the demo yesterday. I was globally unimpressed by it.
    I mean ok, it’s a demo, of an alpha version, but so far it’s slow, hard to understand how to do things, and frustrating in general.

    – I still don’t know what I can use to attack (why can’t I defend myself with a hammer?)
    – I had less difficulties suffocating my wife with a pillow than applying a bandage to her.
    – I still don’t know how to apply something to myself (eating snacks, for example)
    – Movement is SLOW, which doesn’t help with frustration when you are lost

    So I hope they will do a lot of effort on the interface, because it’s very confusing for now.

    I see the idea of the game, yes, it looks promising. But I hope we are not getting our hopes high only over “the idea” (or the drama happening to an indie studio).

    • Teddy Leach says:

      You… Can defend yourself with a hammer.

      You rip up a blanket to get bandages and you use them on her in the same way as a pillow.

      You use things on yourself by dropping them on your heart icon.

      Movement feels slow at first but it soon starts to feel natural, and you can run with shift.

      You should check the forums for tips and guidance.

    • Premium User Badge

      Samuel Erikson says:

      Oh, for fuck’s sake. The game explains how to do ALL of that (except for the movement, I think). Do you see all of those question marks? Click on them. They’ll make you less dumb.

    • Thants says:

      Well, it’s a good thing we’re being constructive.

    • matty_gibbon says:

      You were unimpressed ALL ROUND THE WORLD? That’s amazing! I only ever manage to be locally unimpressed with a game.

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      P7uen says:

      I was domestically unimpressed but when I tried it at the office I was amazed!

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      oceanclub says:

      There are, well, idiosyncracies to the UI which hopefully will be cleared up before release. For example, I was baffled when, asked to barricade the doors/windows, I created a barricade by placing nails, wood and my hammer into the crafting slots, and used the resulting barricades (floor-to-ceiling four-sided wooden structures) on the doors/windows, nothing happened. It turns out that you can also just use the planks directly on the window/doors, and that’s also referred to as a barricade. As well as that, some items you use simply by having them in your main slot, and some items you use by clicking on them and applying them to things. It just strikes me as inconsistent.

      P.

    • thebigJ_A says:

      Did you try reading the help text? Like the one that tells you exactly how to use the hammer? (With it equipped, hold Ctrl. You face in the direction of your mouse, and click to swing. Easy.)

    • Terraval says:

      In other news, CAD is still going. Did not expect that in 2011…

    • Gnoupi says:

      Thanks for the useful answers, haven’t thought about using ctrl, and nothing was really pointing it to me.
      The game tutorial in its current state is not really easy to use. Clicking on a 4 pixels bubble when I’m stressed about things to come and time passing is not really the best. I haven’t even noticed the bubbles on my first playthroughs.

      The crafting interface is hard of access, and not really intuitive. It looks like a combining tool, why would I put a bed sheet if I have nothing to combine it with? I had the same issue with planks and nails, once I figured out the crafting tool, and ended up with actual, standing barricades, when I wanted to apply them to windows and doors.

      My point is, I’m not saying it’s a bad game. But in its current state, it is not very friendly to the new player, and honestly, I got bored when playing it because of that. Probably this is not a game for me, simply. I was only giving an opinion.

      No need to bash me for that. The game is far from being clear, and like I usually say at work, blame your interface, not the user who can’t figure your interface out.

      PS: To grammar nazis, English is not my first language, so I deeply and globally apologize for my use of the word globally in the inappropriate place.

    • Premium User Badge

      oceanclub says:

      “Like the one that tells you exactly how to use the hammer? ”

      Putting the hammer in the main slot, then holding Ctrl only works for using it to attack zombies. To, say, nail something to a wall, like planks, you have to pick up the planks with your cursor, then apply them to whatever surface you want. There’s no real consistency, which is the problem.

      P.

    • MashPotato says:

      Ctrl + click will attack with whatever you have equipped. Clicking the items onto the environment will use the items in a decidedly less violent way ;) I can see how the standing barricade and window barricade might be confusing, but think of it this way: when making a window barricade, you don’t craft something first, you hammer things directly onto the window.

      But rest assured, we plan on adding a menu that will have controls mapped out, and the UI itself is still a WIP. In the meantime, you can find a list of the controls here: http://www.pzwiki.net/wiki/Controls :)

  4. wu wei says:

    This is rapidly beginning to feel like misguided marketting :|

  5. Vexing Vision says:

    Man, I sincerely hope that they’re having a Minecraft-level success on their hands for all the trouble they went through.

    Unlikely given the complexity of the game, but let’s hope!

    Also: Fucking, fucking pirates.

  6. kikito says:

    This is preposterous. I wish Project Zomboid better luck in the future.

  7. Premium User Badge

    Tinus says:

    Key/account-based authorization for auto-update requests sent to the servers?

    • Heliosicle says:

      I think thats what they did :/

    • konrad_ha says:

      I think that’s what they will do.

    • LionsPhil says:

      It sounds like they’re using some hoity-toity mirror network that would probably not allow that, since it’d need to then delegate checking that authorization check back to a server of their own or something.

      And if the pirates would only need to find one working account to start grabbing files again; if they try to brute-force it, that’s just more bandwidth consumed, presumably chargable. It’d make their situation worse.

    • Nickenstein says:

      That is what we had. An app launcher with a logon/password, that checked if the account was valid from our database, and if it was, then the app-launcher downloaded/updated the game from the cloud server.

      This app-launcher is what was cracked.

  8. MattM says:

    I don’t think people should pirate games in general, but I love having the cracker scene around. It makes buying DRMed games a little less scary since I know I can always find a cracked copy when EA shuts down their authentication servers to save some money.

    • Premium User Badge

      Malibu Stacey says:

      Good luck disinfecting your machine from the virii & trojans they routinely attach to those cracks. What’s even better is when they write them into the code of the crack you’re using to run your game so AV scanners can’t pick them up.

    • malkav11 says:

      That’s a myth. Oh, the swarms of dodgy “crack” websites that turn up on Google searches will cheerfully issue you every virus known to mankind if you should be so stupid as to try to download from them. But if you go to the source – or even BitTorrent, most of the time – you’re fine.

    • mwoody says:

      So because there are cracks, you still give your money to companies that use unacceptable DRM, rather than just not buy them. Giving said companies no reason to change.

      The crack scene could disappear tomorrow, and even those who used those cracks would be the better for it in time. Piracy helps no one.

    • psyk says:

      @malkav11

      It happens I’ve seen a skidrow release that was compromised, it did some fun things :D

    • step21 says:

      If keygens etc. are identified as malware it is mostly because of the use of certain packing/generation algorithms that apparently are also used by malware (but do no harm in themselves). Or a conspiracy by the software industry …

    • malkav11 says:

      If there was a virus in a pirate scene release distribution, it wasn’t put there by the actual pirates but somewhere further down the distribution chain and you just got a bad package.

      It’s kind of a point of pride with that crowd that they don’t do that. But then, they also don’t put their stuff on Bittorrent, which is too plebeian for them.

  9. CMaster says:

    I’m actually getting rather sick of hearing about these guys trials and tribulations. Especially as almost everything that has happened was avoidable. Don’t get me wrong, I’m sure they’re all genuine mistakes and I do sympathise, but their payment problems could have been avoided by following the payment services ToS properly. This incident could be prevented by having better security on their downloads. You can’t stop piracy – but its fairly easy to stop or at least restrict pirates using your download service.

    Anyway, would love to hear more about the game when it’s progressed. Less interested in all this kerfuffle.

    • JuJuCam says:

      Indeed, they’re beginning to come across as rather amateur. Thankfully their game looks great and seems to have the right idea about zombies, but their business sense is clearly lacking.

    • Premium User Badge

      Kelron says:

      They probably are amateurs, everyone has to start somewhere. Maybe they should have had more foresight and planned to stop this in advance, but it’s not easy to think of and cover all the things that can go wrong when you’re planning a project.

    • JuJuCam says:

      I don’t mean to knock them by calling them amateur – I myself am an amateur theatre worker and producer and I’ve made plenty of mistakes and seen plenty more made – But their problem is that they’ve got a great product which has generated interest to begin with, but every other bit of publicity that they’ve gotten since the product announcement seems to have been bad news. To be honest I think they’re doing the best they can to spin bad news into good outcomes (releasing a demo, the unique preorder model etc.) but with a bit of foresight and savvy they could’ve avoided all that nonsense and focussed on completing the product.

    • keith.lamothe says:

      @CMaster,

      There is something to be said to the man who gets bad service at _every_ restaurant, yes.

      That said, I’m not tired of hearing about their trials and tribulations; at the very least it’s given me a list of things not to do :)

    • Tatourmi says:

      Was the car that exploded in front of their office avoidable?

      Oh, and you should not have to protect yourself, it is not supposed to be necessary, and it is by no means their mistake.

  10. Tei says:

    His next game will be about a indie game team trapped in a room with a low budget. Must make a profit, but outside theres a pack of warez people that want to pillage everything. Corporations are screwing then the payments. And the NASA is planning a test of low orbite schedulled satellital collapse directly over the only backup of the source of game.

  11. Premium User Badge

    Kirrus says:

    Read their recently posted FAQ about this. They go into detail as to why they didn’t spend much time working on security, and why they’re coming across as amateur. (Hint: they are not PR peeps.)
    http://projectzomboid.com/blog/index.php/2011/06/545/

    • Malawi Frontier Guard says:

      Well they sure talk a lot for not being PR peeps!

    • TillEulenspiegel says:

      We believe that even with months of effort, regardless of our experience in cryptography or lack thereof, the game would still be cracked, or our download server still be accessed, perhaps buying us a week tops of additional time until it happened.

      This response is incredibly weird. I really don’t know what to say except: .htaccess

      These guys really desperately need to bring in a smart jack-of-all-trades guy to handle the IT and business stuff. Everything not related to actually developing the game.

      Not that their programming skills are top-notch either, but they’re at least sufficient to create a functioning game.

    • Premium User Badge

      Wisq says:

      Right, because .htaccess lets you magically distinguish between legitimate access from the downloader client and illegitimate access from someone who has the downloader client’s credentials.

      Oh wait, the downloader client itself was cracked. So none of this applies. :P

      The real WTF here is trying to use security-by-obscurity, whereby the only reason pirates weren’t downloading their stuff was because they didn’t know where to get it. Find that out, or just crack the downloader, and you’re finished. This is why you need to authenticate on the server during the actual download request, not separately.

  12. Sharkticon says:

    1. This is what happens when you try some ‘cloud’ distribution option. It doesn’t stop the pirates, and it costs you money. Stop trying to be clever with DRM or distribution and just do what GOG or 2DBoy do, give users a DRM-free .exe file.

    2. Clever developers use filesharing and piracy to market their products and, in a sense, to get ‘free’ beta testing. Not so enlightened developers waste precious time and money trying to combat it.

    3. Losing ‘potential sales’ (which can easily turn into potential buys) is not as bad as not selling the game at all.

    4. Instead of leaving the full game offline, they should have quickly cancelled their cloud distribution thing and set up a temporary download link for legitimate buyers. Give people EASY ways to pay for your product.

    • thechicken says:

      All these things are exactly what they’ve done. They’ve had absolutely no issues with pirated copies, only the current version where there was literally a button to re-download the game from the cloud server, costing them money with each click.

      They have cancelled the cloud distribution, and given a download link for everybody in the meantime. http://projectzomboid.com/blog/index.php/2011/06/free-public-demo-released/

    • Premium User Badge

      P7uen says:

      Yeah! Like PayPal and Google Checkout!

    • Premium User Badge

      Wisq says:

      There’s nothing special about a “cloud” distribution system that makes it more expensive or undesirable.

      They’re pretty vague on exactly how it works, but it’s probably something similar to Amazon S3. You upload your files, they distribute them to their datacentres across the world, everyone downloads locally at high speed, and you pay only for the amount that actually gets downloaded.

      Under low load, it costs less than running a file-serving server somewhere 24-7. Under high load, it costs less than running the bunch of servers (with lots of bandwidth) 24-7 that you would need to serve all those files, and you never have to worry about it being overloaded or going down.

      The problem is, if you suddenly experience a flood of traffic, you’re going to see a pretty high bill. That’s no problem for most, since tons of traffic usually means tons of business. But if it doesn’t, you’re suddenly left footing the bill yourself.

      The other problem is, it usually doesn’t leave you any option to do custom authentication — like, verifying your downloaders against a database of user subscription accounts. So you have to rely on other mechanisms, like a downloader client that verifies you first and then accesses the (unprotected) download. And if someone cracks that downloader client, well …

      That’s not to say that cloud storage services aren’t appropriate for this. There’s definitely a way to do this (on Amazon S3 at least). You can create signed time-limited requests that the server will accept up until the deadline you specify. So what you could do is, have a (low bandwidth, low load) authentication server whose sole job is to authenticate user logins and provide a time-limited URL (a few minutes at most) for them to start downloading the latest game client.

      Naturally, there’s nothing to stop someone from taking that download and putting it up on a torrent — but they have to do that for _every_ game version, and more importantly, you don’t have to foot the bill.

  13. Teddy Leach says:

    I still think they’re doing a phenomenal job with Project Zomboid.

  14. Tusque D'Ivoire says:

    I Imagine the brave-faced indie stone a lot like this

    Still haven’t tried this gem, I’ll wait to strain their servers with my purchase when everything is back in order :/

  15. johnpeat says:

    I’m sort-of with Sharkticon – the trick is to leverage “piracy” to get your game out there instead of spending time and money attempting to stop the unstoppable.

    Piracy happens and there is NOTHING you can do about it. Smart people will find a way of making it work to their advantage (make every copy of the game into a seeding Torrent of itself, for example) – others will be washed away…

    These guys should stop writing the game and start on a book – the title would have to be “How not to create an indie game” because they seem to have fallen into every beartrap there is.

    That said – most other games suffer at least some of the issues they’ve suffered, so this just MIGHT be them being rather better at marketting and PR than most Indies – just a thought there RPS :)

    • Deano2099 says:

      Which they acknowledge in their article and which they do. Even as a piracy apologist, you *can* and should stop people from downloading pirate copies from your own server…

  16. Coins says:

    They have the worst of luck. :(

    • wu wei says:

      How is having no security layer on their update mechanism “bad luck”?

    • JuJuCam says:

      From what I gather the problem was not that they had no security on their update mechanism so much as that they didn’t have an update mechanism, so one of the pirates decided that they would create one. A particularly brutal one that downloaded the entire game file with every click, rather than the sensible thing which is to check if there was a more recent version and only download the latest patches.

      Think. If your game that you’re playing every day opens with a big button that says “Update Now”, wouldn’t you click it pretty much every time you ran the game just in case there was an update? Imagine this version is torrented and 1000 people end up with it. Even if just 10% of that 1000 get addicted enough, that’s 100 people slamming those servers for the full download, maybe multiple times a day.

      Considering the legit customers are only updating when the game is changed and therefore their impact on the servers is predictable regardless of how many there are, I’d say it must’ve been worrying to see such a brutal spike in traffic once the updating version hit the torrents.

      Yes, things could’ve been done to prevent this, but I doubt anyone would’ve predicted that some arsehole would crack the game in that particular way.

  17. AlexB says:

    The game is a fiver – do people really not have that spare? :(

  18. Avaenuha says:

    This is really just poor business planning. It’s one thing to decide you’re not going to invest much in DRM – that’s a perfectly rational decision, and they make a good argument for it on their blog post. But it’s quite another to not even glance at the consequences of choosing a distribution method that costs you money per click when you have little to no protection against piracy.

    It’s all very well to say “I just wanna make games”, but to survive as a business, you really do need to think about all that other ‘commercial’ stuff as well. You can still be ‘real people’ and ‘just a couple of guys and a gal”, just think your business decisions through. That’s how the real world works.

  19. fuggles says:

    If pirates sink this game before it’s even finished I’ll be very sad indeed.

    • pipman3000 says:

      don’t worry if that happened the pirate scene would find some way to turn this story about the effects of piracy on small developers into an editorial about the evils of corporation and the gaming blogs will eat it up.

  20. The Great Wayne says:

    Damn it, who the hell got the idea to build their studio on an amerindian burial ground ?

    • Nick says:

      They dug up the bodies, pissed on them, then buried them again upside down.

      (I miss old south park)

    • Fiatil says:

      You and me both, brother.

  21. Sfitz says:

    I’m pretty certain that this game being finally released is one of the signs of the apocalypse.

  22. RogB says:

    I know this is going to work like a big red button saying DO NOT PRESS, but please try not to open the develper blog and read the comments. I feel like my IQ has just dropped significantly.
    How you could be encouraged to continue working on a project with ‘customers’ like that I dont know..

  23. Starayo says:

    I pirated zomboid because there was no demo available, loved it, and purchased as soon as I had money in my account. This was using a launcher that had a cached version, the kind they say they were turning a blind eye to.

    The updating versions are completely indefensible.

    • Walsh says:

      You pirated the game because you couldn’t possibly risk $5 on a bad game? Even though you paid for it later, you still basically endorse piracy. It’s the developers right to determine whether you get a demo or not.

  24. SaVi says:

    Hm, piracy was never legitim, or could take the moral highground, but if it hits the small guys? Bad move. And then something as awfull as an “autoupdater” to suck of bandwidth without compensation, speaking of adding insult to injury.
    Terraria could be a better game too and maybe we could have seen what would have come out of Infiniminer today. Any plans in the indie scene about this? I don’t ignoring this helps.

  25. Robert says:

    Oh dear, those forums… MY EYES.. MY EYES!

  26. Premium User Badge

    Malibu Stacey says:

    Ah those lovable rogue pirates. They’re like a giant collective modern day Robin Hood sticking it to the giant evil mega corporations who are only out to increase shareholder value & don’t care for us consumers.

    Oh wait……

  27. malkav11 says:

    Aren’t they running it as a browser-based game? That seems like a problem they wouldn’t have had if they were using a more conventional desktop-based approach. But maybe I’m confused.

  28. wisnoskij says:

    But it should be easy not to allow pirates access to their servers….
    Sure I knwo pirates always will crack the game, but almost never can a pirated copy update itself.

  29. aircool says:

    There’s always someone out to ruin everyone elses day.

  30. Donjonson says:

    FREE DEMO??!! Great! I’m waiting until all the madness has ended and there’s a bit more to the game to buy it, but buy it I will, eventually.

  31. Premium User Badge

    Makariel says:

    Pirate Call of Honor: Homefront Warfare as much as you like, but sucking money from an indie developer that’s struggling to survive? That’s disgusting.

  32. Premium User Badge

    shoptroll says:

    This is why we can’t have nice things isn’t it? :(

    That said, this wasn’t terribly on my radar although I have the sudden urge to actually purchase a copy. This really sucks for them especially after all the rigamarole Paypal and Amazon gave them.

  33. Limey says:

    I’ve always slightly wondered how much additional piracy is caused by the difficulty for under-18s to purchase games online, because, although we like to pretend not sometimes, videogames are aimed mostly as teenagers. And even if they aren’t, teenagers always make up a large proportion of the demand for the game.
    Yet unless these teenies are in a situation in which they can ‘borrow daddy’s credit card’, they will find it extremely hard to gain any access to these kind of games at all. So they go running along for some sweet pirated action, I guess.

    • Torgen says:

      Correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t there ZERO difficulty in going to the local drugstore or Walmart (hell, even grocers now) and putting their allowance into a prepaid Visa or Mastercard?

    • Premium User Badge

      yhancik says:

      Well I don’t know where Limey is living, but certainly not here.

      The “main card” here is debit card, and you would need to pay almost one Project Zomboid a month only for owning a credit card.
      So it’s not really a viable solution for me (and others) – which has often put me in difficult situations.

      I can’t tell how happy I was when I finally could feed my PayPal account from my bank account. And ever since I have made a great deal supporting the indie projects I love.

    • cliffski says:

      Avbsolutely EVERy major online software payment servcie, such as BMTMicro, plimus, fastspring ALL take debit cards.
      With these devs moaned about being kicked from 1 payment scheme, everyone said use BMTMicro, then they got kicked from another and we all said again USE BMT MICRO. Now they realise their download links are insecure, and I don’t have the energy to keep repeating the flipping obvious any more.

      Anyway… You do not, and never have, needed a credit card to buy games online.

  34. SuperNashwanPower says:

    I like to pronouce the word “Pirates” in the same way as “Pilates”

  35. Premium User Badge

    yhancik says:

    For all the mistakes, amateurism and stuff, they have at least the merit to try to make the game I’m sure many of us have dreamt of before (even if we ended up sick of zombies :p).
    And from the imperfect alpha (no shit*?), they’re on the right path so far.
    (I’m more worried about A World Without Wind for example :/).

    We should be sending them biscuits, not stand outside their office** booing their peripheral incompetence.

    * especially considered it was released earlier.. it’s almost a pre-alpha
    ** it wouldn’t be safe anyway :p

    • Premium User Badge

      Lambchops says:

      I’m not particularly worried about A Valley Without Wind really. It’s looking like it is also progressing nicely (and I can’t wait to get my grubby little paws on a version of it). To me both it and Zomboid are looking like they are trying to do fairly similar things (though obviously in different settings and with slightly different priorities) and it will be interesting to see how they compare.