A new study has revealed that games with good reviews are more likely to be pirated, the result of the study has no doubt sent shockwaves into the gaming industry.
The new study from the Copenhagen Business School and University of Waterloo concluded, based on tracking more than 170 new game releases on BitTorrent networks over a period of three month, that the most pirated game in this period, Fallout: New Vegas, was actually not a bad game at all.
In what might seem obvious to, um, almost everybody, the study nevertheless tried to find a scientific relationship between piracy rates and review ratings, although even their own results showed that some people are just sadists when it comes to choosing game downloads, the only possible explanation for the awful Tron: Evolution game to have reached as high as 5th in the top downloads chart.
Still, a scientific study on BitTorrent habits should be welcomed, especially if it can challenge the industry's own "research", which usually concentrates more on the commercial side of things: the amount of money being lost based on the presumption that every download equals a lost sale.
But one does wonder perhaps, instead of analysing the relationship between downloads and review scores, would it not be better to also take into account the actual number of sales for the titles. In other words, is there a statistical correlation between the the number of people buying the game, the quality of the game as determined by review scores, and the number of people that end up pirating? Does the quality of the game determine the ratio of purchase/piracy? Now that would be an interesting study to read ...