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Mihkel
01-02-2012, 02:23 PM
http://digitalbattle.com/2012/01/31/letter-from-an-indie-pc-developer-regarding-piracy/

What do you guys think? Reasonable or unreasonable?

R-F
01-02-2012, 02:29 PM
"Those games we released last year stopped being bought! HOW SHOCKING."

For people who don't want to visit this shitty attention whoring click site:-

I run a small independent PC game studio (which will remain anonymous), and we have a slate of smaller puzzle and RPG games that we’ve made since 2009. We sell the games on Steam and other downloadable services, in addition to selling them on our own site, completely DRM-free. In 2011, we had 12 developers and artists working on new titles, and working on getting our games on the iOS platform. Sales were decent throughout the years, enough to support us and ensure that we could keep updating our games. Then our entire catalog of games was posted on The Pirate Bay and spread to other torrent sites.

We didn’t think much of it at first, piracy affects everyone in this industry, and we believed that sales wouldn’t be affected too much and that gamers would appreciate supporting the devs and buying DRM free games. Then sales went down. A lot. The “bundle” of games hit the torrent sites in January 2011, and by March, sales were down 50%. By May, they were down 80%. We tried to respond to the piracy of our games in several ways. We lowered the price on Steam by 33%. Sales picked up a tiny bit, but it’s impossible because you’re competing with free. We had Steam sales, bundle packs, everything we could. It wasn’t enough, and by October of 2011, I had to let go half of my team — 6 people. We’ve restructured now to focus entirely on iOS games. I dunno how it’ll turn out, but developing on PC and supporting our PC games is not an option any longer. We just can’t afford it.

It’s easy for gamers and game journalists to get on their soapbox and proclaim they know how to fix the piracy issue, they always seem to “know” what developers should do (“Put it on Steam”. “Don’t use DRM”, “Use clever advertising” etc.). But you’re not the ones who have to manage a studio, you’re not the ones who have to make sure your developers get paid so they can feed their families. Our studio was doing just fine before our games hit the pirate channels. Then it all went downhill.

There are some claims that piracy causes millions of lost jobs in the US. I dunno about those numbers, maybe they’re true, maybe they’re much lower. But I know that piracy cost at least 6 jobs in 2011. Six people that I had to fire. Talented, hard-working folks with families.


So to all of you Pirate Bay supporters, all of you “experts” on Internet freedom who support “sharing” and who claim that “it’s not stealing”. From the bottom of my heart and on behalf of those 6 people: fuck you.

Best part is this:-

We didn’t think much of it at first, piracy affects everyone in this industry, and we believed that sales wouldn’t be affected too much and that gamers would appreciate supporting the devs and buying DRM free games. Then sales went down. A lot. The “bundle” of games hit the torrent sites in January 2011, and by March, sales were down 50%. By May, they were down 80%.

No matter how they're calculating this statistic, it's fail. If they're basing it off December sales, NO SHIT December gets a lot of sales. If they're basing it off March the last year sales, HOW THE HELL DO YOU NOT MAKE A NEW GAME BETWEEN THOSE TWO TIMES.

In reality, I suspect this article was written by one of this site's shitty writers, hence the bullshit anonymity.

Another article of this site's:- (http://digitalbattle.com/2012/01/21/the-hypocrisy-of-pc-gamers/)

There are petitions these days trying to get developer From Software to port Dark Souls to the PC. The petitions have garnered hundreds of thousands of signatures, but it’s still unlikely we’ll ever see Dark Souls on PC. Why? Because PC is a platform with 90% piracy rate.

The majority of PC gamers will never pay for their games, no matter how many Steam sales Valve has, no matter how much the game are marked down, no matter how easy and convenient and DRM-free it is: it’ll never be better than free. Last year, a whopping 4 million PC gamers pirated (http://torrentfreak.com/top-10-most-pirated-games-of-2011-111230/) Crysis 2. When time comes for Crysis 3, which platform do you think developer Crytek will focus on? PC or consoles? Even Portal 2, which is made by Valve, a company with a God-like status among gamers, was pirated more than 3 million times on the PC.

Developers like Valve can afford to put out great and expensive PC titles: they have an established fan base who are going to buy the game no matter what. But when it comes to small developers, and especially first time developers, it’s a very different story, as Bohemia Interactive showed last year with the release of ArmA 2: for every 3 people who bought the game, 100 pirated it. The head of Bohemia said (http://www.pcgamer.com/2011/11/17/interview-bohemia-interactives-ceo-on-fighting-piracy-creative-drm/) the statistic was “really worrying for us as a mid-sized, independent, PC-oriented developer”.

Politically correct PC gamers insist that services like Steam and lower prices are the solution to game piracy, but Steam has been around for a few years now, as have other digital distribution systems. Has PC gaming piracy gone down? Not at all. Granted, publishers share some of the blame: restrictive DRM solutions have certainly driven away some legitimate gamers. But before you start praising “non-DRM” solutions, know that there are no true “non-DRM” services. Steam is a DRM service. If you don’t believe that, try and give one of you Steam games to a friend. Try and sell the game that you bought and rightfully own — oh, you can’t. That’s because you don’t own the games in your Steam library, technically you pay for a “subscription” to them.

With those kinds of numbers, why should From Software make Dark Souls for the PC platform? If 9 out of 10 gamers will pirate the game, that’s not a good business proposition. And when multiplatform titles do get a PC release, it’s usually in the form of a bad console port. That’s where the hypocrisy lies: elitist PC gamers complain about bad ports and developers not caring enough about the PC platform. But then they pirate the game anyway. At least 9 out 10 times. The tired old excuse that “online piracy isn’t theft, because it’s just a copy” is bullshit. If you didn’t pay for it, you stole it. Doesn’t matter if its a physical copy, or a digital copy — the developer won’t get paid for their work.

For the record, I don’t own a console. I’m a PC gamer. And all but one (Battlefield 3) of my 40+ games were bought on Steam. But unlike many other legitimate PC gamers, I don’t complain when a developer decides not to release a PC version. Or when they decide to spend most of their resources on the console versions. Nor I don’t complain about bad PC ports that are released years later. I understand their reasons. If I was a developer, would I spend my resources developing for a platform with 10% piracy rate, or 90% piracy rate?

Face it, we PC gamers don’t deserve any more exclusive titles. We don’t deserve proper PC versions or ports. We don’t deserve a truly non-DRM system. By pirating 9 out of 10 games, we have’t earned the right to any of those things.

Sincerely,
A PC gamer.

Anyone else getting a bit of an anti-pirate bias from this site? The article is called "The Hypocrisy of PC Gamers", even though they spelt the article name wrong in the other article.

And that really should've been signed "Sincerely, A Smug Wanker".

EDIT: Both these articles are anonymous. I WONDER WHY.

c-Row
01-02-2012, 02:44 PM
No matter how they're calculating this statistic, it's fail. If they're basing it off December sales, NO SHIT December gets a lot of sales. If they're basing it off March the last year sales, HOW THE HELL DO YOU NOT MAKE A NEW GAME BETWEEN THOSE TWO TIMES.

Chances are they didn't just compare sales figures to a single month.


In reality, I suspect this article was written by one of this site's shitty writers, hence the bullshit anonymity.

Another article of this site's:- (http://digitalbattle.com/2012/01/21/the-hypocrisy-of-pc-gamers/)


Anyone else getting a bit of an anti-pirate bias from this site? The article is called "The Hypocrisy of PC Gamers", even though they spelt the article name wrong in the other article.

And that really should've been signed "Sincerely, A Smug Wanker".

EDIT: Both these articles are anonymous. I WONDER WHY.

Strong language usually is the sign of a weak mind.

squirrel
01-02-2012, 02:54 PM
This, is not a good time to do business, any kind of business. That says it all.

I dont understand why some egoistic game industrialists consider their businesses to be bullet-proof from economic downturn. Study your group of customers you idiots. Your customers are no longer kids who are spending their parents' money like pouring water out. Your potential customers, like me, are making our own livings. You expect us to keep paying for your products under such economic outlook? You're out of your stupid mind.

Dont play naive. The whole industry is just recycling the same formulas again and again. It's not that their creativity is running out. I believe that good ideas are all hoarded for good reason.

Keeping blaming on pirating for your problem. You perish from the industry and I dont feel sorry for you.

R-F
01-02-2012, 02:58 PM
Chances are they didn't just compare sales figures to a single month.

They're still comparing it between the year the games were (presumably) released during and the next year along. As well as using the first months (which is generally part of a downturn due to people realising they borrowed too much money for Christmas itself) of a year to gauge sales.


Strong language usually is the sign of a weak mind.

Attacking the person rather than their points is usually a sign the person is right. ;)

c-Row
01-02-2012, 03:00 PM
Attacking the person rather than their points is usually a sign the person is right. ;)


[...] shitty writers [...] "Smug Wanker".

I see. http://forum.cinefacts.de/images/smilies/biggrin.gif

R-F
01-02-2012, 03:04 PM
I see. http://forum.cinefacts.de/images/smilies/biggrin.gif

They were just insults. Not attacks on the people themselves. ;D

There's a word of difference. Now, if you wanted to prove I was a hypocrite, you could've quoted it when I implied it was bullshit anonymity to just attract site clicks.

c-Row
01-02-2012, 03:10 PM
They were just insults. Not attacks on the people themselves. ;D

Uh-huh... ;)


There's a word of difference. Now, if you wanted to prove I was a hypocrite, you could've quoted it when I implied it was bullshit anonymity to just attract site clicks.

How would that work? "Oh, that article is written by an anonymous writer! It must be super-great!" Anyone who would fall for that deserves to generate site clicks for them.

soldant
01-02-2012, 03:11 PM
R-F does have a point though... indie games don't exactly have the same shelf life as mainstream ones (exception: things like Minecraft, but that's a different kettle of fish altogether) so although I don't doubt that the games did suffer from piracy, I wonder if the drop off in sales represents lack of interest rather than 100% caused by piracy.

Of course because the author is anonymous for all we know they could have made particularly bad games or been selling them at a ridiculous price point. Perhaps more telling is that the torrents didn't come out until 2009, suggesting that whatever the games were, they probably weren't that wildly popular. The article is fairly ambiguous. Maybe they didn't bother to release a decent demo. Maybe most people just didn't like the games and wouldn't pay for them. Maybe the piracy element is a coincidence. We don't know how well they were selling in the first place, just that sales dropped off.

Finally, I remember Cliffski from Positech Games and his infamous dialogue with pirates. He listen, fiddled with a few things (while trying to stick to his "Charge as much as possible because indie shouldn't be cheap!" ideals), and then went on a rant because piracy didn't drop to 0%. There will always be piracy, fact of life.

icupnimpn2
01-02-2012, 03:20 PM
Smaller puzzle and RPG games? And included in Steam bundles? Then I should already own the games, yet no studio comes to mind.

Any ideas? Puzzle games, yeah. Smaller RPGs? Can't think of a lot of those.

vinraith
01-02-2012, 04:17 PM
Our games aren't selling, it must be because of piracy!

It must be nice to work in an industry where no matter how completely crap your product is, there's always an excuse for low sales that isn't your fault.

hamster
01-02-2012, 04:40 PM
Probably one way of gauging the effects of piracy is to include a mandatory rating survey per game. Once you've played up to a certain point, the game prompts you to give a rating (1-100) and asks whether you have any intention of purchasing the game (accompany the survey with the clause that information uploaded from the survey, including IP, will not be stored or used in a personally identifiable manner or for the purposes of any litigation). Then it would simply be a case of seeing whether people who have rated the game over a certain threshold number answered that they have the intention to purchase the game (in the future). A link could also be provided pointing to a site where the game could be legitimately purchased. Then it would be a matter of making sense of the numbers. Of course, the numbers wouldn't be completely accurate as people can lie, but in this case, there really is no reason to (beyond the psychological comfort of clicking "yes" even if they don't, or the pirate clicking a random choice to continue playing).

metalangel
01-02-2012, 04:58 PM
I don't buy games that nag me, out of principle. A lot of iOS games think it's perfect fine to shove popups in your facing asking you to buy bonus items/like them on Arsebook/if only you had the full version you could have had X. Same goes for download titles (XBLA games like doing this too).

slick_101
01-02-2012, 06:55 PM
Our games aren't selling, it must be because of piracy!

It must be nice to work in an industry where no matter how completely crap your product is, there's always an excuse for low sales that isn't your fault.

This. So so so so much.

It's like now they can just get away with doing nothing but moan about how low the sales figures are. If the product was worth buying so much then why didn't they try and put it into one of the many indie bundles out there? I'm sure it's not that hard to get your game into the Humble Indie Bundle or something. Because at least then that would get their name out there.

Fiyenyaa
01-02-2012, 07:49 PM
Strong language usually is the sign of a weak mind.

No it isn't.
The idea that you can dismiss a point because of it's delivery rather than it's content is ludicrous. I may agree that there is a time and place for "strong language", but when we're dealing with arguments it makes zero difference to the actual substance.

sabrage
01-02-2012, 07:51 PM
Someone needs to Good Day this article and figure out what developer this is.

TODD
01-02-2012, 08:02 PM
anti-pirate bias

I'm scratching my head a bit at this one.

ZIGS
01-02-2012, 08:10 PM
That "indie developer" letter is fake

Drake Sigar
01-02-2012, 08:25 PM
How many of their new games were released that year? Are they aware each game doesn't get a constant stable revenue all year round, and in fact sees most of it's profits in the first couple of weeks (although this rule is a little more flexible for independent games)? What does "keep updating our games" mean - were they simply re-releasing newer versions of their old games?

Unaco
01-02-2012, 08:40 PM
I'm scratching my head a bit at this one.

Same here.

c-Row
01-02-2012, 10:17 PM
The idea that you can dismiss a point because of it's delivery rather than it's content is ludicrous. I may agree that there is a time and place for "strong language", but when we're dealing with arguments it makes zero difference to the actual substance.

Then the OP should have stuck to attacking the original content rather than throwing profanity all over the place. Some of us actually prefer a more civilized tone.

Berzee
01-02-2012, 10:40 PM
Same here.

Count me in too.

R-F
01-02-2012, 11:27 PM
How would that work? "Oh, that article is written by an anonymous writer! It must be super-great!" Anyone who would fall for that deserves to generate site clicks for them.

No, it's about the fact that I was targetting the provenance of the article rather than the article itself.


Someone needs to Good Day this article and figure out what developer this is.

Wut.


I'm scratching my head a bit at this one.

The role of a reporter of any sort is to give genuine information with a bit of analysis, instead of making up unsubstantiated figures and claiming that there reason for it is your Pet Peeve of the Week.


Then the OP should have stuck to attacking the original content rather than throwing profanity all over the place. Some of us actually prefer a more civilized tone.

I did.

And then I swore.

These things aren't mutually exclusive. Complaining about profanity for the sake of complaining about profanity, and then claiming that you're complaining because I was not attacking the content isn't cool, bro.

Without swearing, it's hard to get across sincerity or anger towards a thing in terms of tone on the internet.

Keep
01-02-2012, 11:48 PM
In an alternate universe, where piracy doesn't exist:


Our games stopped selling in the post-Christmas environment of January 2011, and by March, sales were naturally down a lot (50% as a matter of fact). By May, they were down 80% - indie games tend to have a short lifespan. Pre-release/release trailers/news stories/reviews/(even some advertising) drive sales a LOT, so when the games first came out they did ok, but lacking incredible word of mouth (alas), sales obviously soon dried up to a trickle. Not unusual in this business, given consumers are being tugged this way and that at every moment by a barrage of news and fresh releases and distracting hype. We lowered the price on Steam by 33%, but sales only picked up as much as could be expected (i.e. not a lot). We didn't really try any other ways of drawing people's attention to the games - we had Steam sales, bundle packs, yeah, but that was playing to a market that we'd already exhausted. Instead of trying new avenues, say offering a limited (i.e. scarce, not made of ones and zeroes) prize; or getting people interested in our back-catologue by releasing a new game (or at least drumming up interest in a new game); or trying to establish a personal connection with what fans we had and hope they'd help build our audience from there, we just kind of sat around. Sure enough, by October of 2011, I had to let go half of my team — 6 people.


I'm being too biased - I'd say piracy did hit them. It's not insignificant. But "Piracy did it" is one story and as a businessman, using it to explain what happened is incredibly pathetic.

a) Piracy is an inevitability. Plan for it.
b) Piracy is a tool. Use it.
c) Piracy is an unpredictable element in your product's success/failure. Adapt to it.

Don't sit with your finger in your butt and complain that things aren't fair. No they're not! But you run a business. For Christ sake deal with shit when shit happens.

R-F
02-02-2012, 12:09 AM
To be honest, 33% sale on Steam is absolutely pathetic. I don't even look at it unless it's 50+%.

sabrage
02-02-2012, 12:32 AM
To be honest, 33% sale on Steam is absolutely pathetic. I don't even look at it unless it's 50+%.
Exactly. Where's that chart on the effect 75% off discounts have on overall sales? There's no such thing as "selling at a loss" with digital distribution. The investment has already been made, so do a one-day 75% off sale and, assuming your game is good, enjoy the word-of-mouth it generates on top of the influx of sales.*

Also, I keep reading the title and subconsciously adding ", yo." to the end.

*I am not in any way an economist, so prove me wrong if I'm wrong.

Corpekata
02-02-2012, 12:46 AM
The 33 percent means they dropped their base price 33 percent, they weren't talking about a sale price.

soldant
02-02-2012, 12:55 AM
The 33 percent means they dropped their base price 33 percent, they weren't talking about a sale price.
...but given that we don't know what the game is or the original price, that could be an absolutely pointless gesture. If they were selling them at Cliffski prices for example it'd be unlikely to change people's minds.

sabrage
02-02-2012, 12:57 AM
The 33 percent means they dropped their base price 33 percent, they weren't talking about a sale price.
Well, Steam doesn't exactly advertise that. I'd argue they would've gotten more sales if they'd put it on sale, because if it's not on people radars already a price change isn't going to do much to put it there.

Edit: Some forums have a feature that alerts you to posts made before you put yours in when you push "submit." I wish RPS did that.

deano2099
02-02-2012, 02:19 AM
I have no doubt piracy has a negative effect on the industry. If we could eradicate it entirely, we might see some sort of change. But on individual developers? Yeah, sure. Because even if your game doesn't get pirated, the vast majority of others do. It takes an ego the size of a small country to believe that pirates will look at a Bay full of nearly every game ever released for free and say "actually, I want this one indie RPG by a tiny company so much that I'm going pay for it rather than have my pick of nearly every other game ever released for free".

That's what these guys are genuinely claiming. It's bloody hilarious. They think before their games were on TPB, people tried to pirate them, couldn't find them, and so bought them instead. Rather than just pirate a different game. Maybe, maybe, if you're making the latest CoD game, or some huge franchise, you'd have a point. But an indie puzzler? Yeah sure mate, the world is so desperate to play your game even people who pirate everything else are buying it.

The second article is even worse:

"If 9 out of 10 gamers will pirate the game, that’s not a good business proposition."

That's true, because if there are 10 gamers and 9 of them pirate it, that means only one person buys it. A game that will sell only one copy is probably a bad business proposition.

"If I was a developer, would I spend my resources developing for a platform with 10% piracy rate, or 90% piracy rate?"

Then why not develop for a platform with a 0% piracy rate! This mythical beast still exists. It's called the Virtual Boy. Release on that and no-one will pirate your game.

Piracy 'rates' are utterly irrelevant unless you're a console manufacturer selling stuff at a loss and needing a certain attach rate to break even.

Games developers only care about the actual market size. I'd far rather sell 10 million copies on PC and have 90 million people pirate it than sell 1 million on PS3 and only have 100,000 people pirate it.

Fiyenyaa
02-02-2012, 02:29 AM
Then the OP should have stuck to attacking the original content rather than throwing profanity all over the place. Some of us actually prefer a more civilized tone.

I prefer a more civilised tone as well - I don't think that one should swear like a trooper when talking to people they don't know. It doesn't matter:
Whether or not someone actually abides by this makes no difference: delivery methods don't negate the actual substance of an argument, as I said before.

Corpekata
02-02-2012, 02:45 AM
...but given that we don't know what the game is or the original price, that could be an absolutely pointless gesture. If they were selling them at Cliffski prices for example it'd be unlikely to change people's minds.

I know, just there there were two posts in a row laughing at them putting on a 33 percent sale and that this was maybe a cause for their woes and yadda yadda and I wanted to steer the direction away from that because it hadn't in fact happened.

c-Row
02-02-2012, 07:40 AM
I did.

And then I swore.

These things aren't mutually exclusive. Complaining about profanity for the sake of complaining about profanity, and then claiming that you're complaining because I was not attacking the content isn't cool, bro.

Without swearing, it's hard to get across sincerity or anger towards a thing in terms of tone on the internet.

I never claimed you didn't attack the content, I just wished you had done so in a more mature way - and not in the "Rated M for Mature" sense. ;-) Oh well, swear away then.

Liz Lemon
02-02-2012, 07:58 AM
Yeah, I think this is probably a fake article as well.

“The “bundle” of games hit the torrent sites in January 2011, and by March, sales were down 50%. By May, they were down 80%”

So a bundle of his studios "indie" games hit the Pirate Bay in January 2011, then spread to other torrent sites. It should be pretty easy to find that torrent, and by extension the studio who wrote this letter.

I just looked through all the PC torrents uploaded to TPB in jan 2011, and guess what? I didn't find a single torrent that was a "bundle" of games from an indie studio uploaded in that month. For good measure I checked feb, march, april and even december as well - same thing. Not a single torrent matching what this "developer" describes was uploaded to TPB from dec-april 2011. I even checked demonoid, mininova and a few other public trackers as well for good measure and there isn't a single torrent like whats described in the article uploaded from dec-april 2011.

So, we have an "anonymous" game developer claiming a torrent killed his studios sales..... but said torrent doesn't seem to exist. Gee, I wonder why he remains anonymous......

Someone could probably pull a "good day" and figure out the developer as well, or more likely, prove that such a developer doesn't exist.

R-F
06-02-2012, 04:38 PM
What does good day even mean? D:

sabrage
06-02-2012, 04:49 PM
http://murkavenue.tumblr.com/post/16553509655/i-found-ice-cubes-good-day

RobF
07-02-2012, 08:28 AM
True or not, thems the words of a total tool.

Anyway, counterpoint (http://www.merseyremakes.co.uk/gibber/2012/01/on-no-drm/).

BenWah
07-02-2012, 11:30 AM
I think the letter is fake.
A guy smart enough to run a game studio with juvenile swearing, nah.
Unless the guy running the studio is 11 and just discovered vulgarity

Bhazor
07-02-2012, 11:08 PM
Game Developer says piracy is fine
"HOORAY!" "This is a great article." "Finally someone who understands"

Game Developer says piracy is a problem
"What a load of shit" "Who cares what he says"

deano2099
08-02-2012, 12:27 AM
Game Developer says piracy is fine
"HOORAY!" "This is a great article." "Finally someone who understands"

Game Developer says piracy is a problem
"What a load of shit" "Who cares what he says"

Can you link me to the thread where a game developer said piracy is fine?

Bhazor
08-02-2012, 01:02 AM
Almost every indie has said piracy is fine or not worth worrying about at some point, Chris Delay is the one who leaps to mind and the one I probably agree with most. Or have at least said cost of piracy isn't worth the DRM it would take to stop it.
http://forums.introversion.co.uk/introversion/viewtopic.php?t=1046

I just find it irritating that this went under more scrutiny than any of the "piracy is fine" articles and descended into personal attacks almost instantly. I don't like biasness is all.

ffordesoon
08-02-2012, 09:56 PM
I dunno if "piracy is fine" is really what I'd take from that piece. More like "piracy is an inevitability, and trying to stop it in the way most pubs and devs do will only make it worse".

I would've gone with Notch's recent advice to someone who wanted to demo Minecraft, to which he basically said, "Oh, pirate it! If you like it, pay for it!" That's as close to "piracy as fine" as I've seen any indie dev get. It's worth noting, of course, that Notch is clearly much more successful than most indie devs, and as such isn't counting on every single sale the way he presumably used to. I doubt he'd tell a developer just starting out, "Let people pirate your game! They'll pay for it, don't worry!"

As for the site mentioned in the OP, I'd be very surprised if it isn't a guerrilla marketing front for, like, the ESA, or a major publisher. It feels manufactured.

deano2099
08-02-2012, 10:49 PM
Almost every indie has said piracy is fine or not worth worrying about
Those are two hugely different statements.


I just find it irritating that this went under more scrutiny than any of the "piracy is fine" articles and descended into personal attacks almost instantly. I don't like biasness is all.

It wasn't that, it was the piece just didn't make any sense. (As I said, you don't pirates buying a game just because it's not on the torrent sites unless it's most amazing game every with a ton of hype about it, because you're asking them to pay for that over getting any other game for free).

RobF
08-02-2012, 11:16 PM
Assuming it is a real developer, I'd say it's pretty fair to assume that we're most likely not looking at piracy as being the major deciding factor here.

It seems fairly safe to assume that most of the top draws in bundles are doing pretty alright, yeah? I can say that no-one I know or have met on my travels seems to fit the profile. That accounts for a reasonable proportion of UK folks who've been in bundles (most of whom certainly don't have 12 people "on staff") and that probably accounts for somewhere close to 80/90% of people who have been in bundles in total.

You're left with that odd piece of casual tat that you sit there and go "hrrrn?" to or you're left to the Blitz1Up Program stuff (and that's now Indie City focused so again, ill fitting) and not much else. And it's all downhill from there, quality-wise. Past that point, we're probably into the realms where anyone just playing your game should be seen as a bonus even if they got given a copy down the docks for sucking off a sailor ;)

Obviously there's an argument that because smaller=piracy hurts more but when the stats on bundles are as they are, even a low end bundle would beat whatever damage piracy did as you'd be sharing it with a fair seller, yeah? Which would mean you'd outweigh any actual damage from piracy by an order of many many magnitudes with some more magnitudes on top. Unless, you're part of THE ACTION INDIE PACK or whatever that tatty thing is that's been lurking on Steam for years now. I suspect even that does reasonable numbers during the sales though.

Unless again, you're not actually part of a major bundle. And you're not actually visible enough to have your own bundle noticed. In which case, NOT PIRACY, SORRY.

If you're employing 12 people and the sales numbers are so poor that you're barely propping up your business and that can be kicked from under you by some people downloading torrents of your games, NOT PIRACY, SORRY.

All this is assuming it's not just a convenient construct to make a point, naturally.

Anyway, piracy is fine. There you go.

Lambchops
09-02-2012, 12:09 AM
http://murkavenue.tumblr.com/post/16553509655/i-found-ice-cubes-good-day

That is a fine piece of deduction and has made this topic worthwhile for me.

ColOfNature
09-02-2012, 12:36 AM
That is a fine piece of deduction and has made this topic worthwhile for me.

I too enjoyed that. Give the man a deerstalker.