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Game Dev Tycoon: Real Life Piracy Creates In-Game Piracy

Posted by: , 18:36 AEST, Tue April 30, 2013
Tags: DRM, Gaming, Piracy

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A business simulation game that allows players to experience the highs and lows of game development has an unique anti-piracy feature: pirate the game, and you get piracy inside the game!
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Image/Photo Credit: Game Dev Tycoon, Greenheart Games

The simulation game Game Dev Tycoon has a new novel way to combat the piracy of the game - by increasing piracy in the game itself.

Game Dev Tycoon allows players to create and run their own game development company. Priced at only $7.99, the game lets the player experience the ups and downs of game development, starting in a clichéd garage office.

Despite the low price of the game, many still chose to pirate the game, with 93.6% of players using the pirated version a day after the game went on sale, according to stats published by the game makers, Greenheart Games.

But Greenheart Games had anticipated the piracy problem, and solved it in their own unique way. When the game detects the gamer is using an unauthorised copy of the game, game piracy is introduced into the game itself and the companies that gamers created with their pirated version of the game eventually goes bankrupt.

More intriguingly, the pirated version was actually uploaded by one of the game's creators, using this method to hold "a mirror in front of [pirates] and showing them what piracy can do to game developers."

"We are not wealthy and it's unlikely that we will be anytime soon, so stop pretending like we don’t need your 8 dollars!' Patrick Klug wrote on the game's blog.

The responses from pirates seeking help for this crippling issue was also more than ironic, with one asking if DRM could be researched, and another cursing pirates for ruining his company.


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