from the nice-work dept
"Piracy is here, so how can we take advantage of that? What we did actually, on day one, we put that game immediately on all the torrent networks ourselves..."I'm of mixed opinions when it comes to disabling features in "free" versions, but it appears to be working for RedLynx. It's certainly better than freaking out and complaining about "piracy."
Of course, not everyone agrees that putting any content up was a good idea. Over at Escapist Magazine, they drag this guy over the coals for even admitting that piracy exists:
In my mind, posting even a gimped version of your game to pirate sites is counterproductive to attempting to earn money developing said games. Doing so implies that piracy is tolerable, which it isn't. Plus, any traffic which the game may or may not generate to such torrent sites may facilitate users downloading other pirate games which legitimate companies did not leak.This makes no sense at all to me. The CEO is correct. Piracy exists. Piracy of this game is going to happen either way. Figuring out ways to take advantage of it as a promotional tool is the smartest thing you could do. It's not implying that piracy is "tolerable," it's saying that piracy is here, it's not going away, and there are ways to take advantage of it. In many ways it's the reverse of saying it's "tolerable." It's saying that there are benefits to using it to your advantage. Apparently, the folks at Escapist think the proper business strategy is to put your head in the sand. Can't see how that helps at all. As for questioning why he would tell people about it -- again, that's not so complex. By telling people about it, he again is getting a lot more attention for his game and doing so in a way that shows he respects users, rather than thinks that they're all criminals. He trusts that some of those who play the pirated version will decide to upgrade to the full version. And why should he care if others in the industry don't like it? His job, as CEO, is to get more people to pay for his game. If he's found that this method works, what's the problem?
Even if RedLynx made the unscrupulous decision to post their game to a torrent sites, why in the name of Jehovah would the CEO tell anyone about it? I see no advantage for that information to be made public and, conversely, there is a huge possibility for an industry-wide backlash.