Piracy just doesn’t make sense anymore


We are constantly looking for guest bloggers at wololo.net. If you like to write, and have a strong interest in the console hacking scene, contact me either with a comment here, or in a PM on /talk!

185 Responses

  1. Alex

    just ask your self these questions: If i were to release this “Game, Software, Program, …etc” “Will I make money off of it?” and “Do I want to make money off it?” if you answer yes to either then it becomes a matter of you or your families well being because you are hoping to make some sort of income off said software. If everyone pirates your software how much money do you make? therefore you had better have another job lined up if your going to start throwing programs out there and not expecting money from it. No one does stuff just for the fun of it. Sure they say “I do it for the scene” but ask for donations so they can have justification or feel like what they are doing is not only helping others but themselves as well. As far as the whole “Demo” excuse goes, that is no longer valid considering the many media hungry companies doing “Reviews” and “Game play demos” and various screen shots. If you can’t come to a decision based on ALL that information given then you really shouldn’t bother at all (with that title, or software) because it’ll become a headache at that point. All in all it comes down to money. People are greedy and feel like they deserve what they worked hard for. Dev’s decide to share what they worked hard for and to pirate it, is a big FU in their face..With that said, Do I agree with the pricing of said Game or software? No. Granted you worked hard on what you made, you are not the only one who can do what you do so it isn’t a rarity. My 2 cents 🙂

  2. Ashley

    The finer points of piracy have been argued for years now, movie, music, game whatever. Let us change the situation a bit though. Any more a lot of digital software seems to state you are purchasing a license to use the software more than you are paying for the software itself. So imagine for a second, you purchase a CD, play it in your house, then your car, then take it to a friend’s house and attempt to play it. The device tells you that you’ve used up your 2 device license and must pay for it again to use it on that device. Perhaps you buy a car and drive it, your wife drives it, then your buddy wants to take it for a spin. He is promptly informed he must pay the “license” price of the car to use it as a third person. I don’t think people would stand for any of those situations. Why do they expect that of software users. Additionally if cars etc were as easy to “pirate” as a game or movie, it would happen all the time. Imagine making a copy of your favorite car, not stealing it, but copying it. If the tech was there, can you tell me you honestly wouldn’t. Who are they to say I can’t mod my console if I so desire, car companies don’t tell you not to modify a vehicle YOU PURCHASED. Once I’ve paid for something, especially hardware, I should be able to do whatever I want to with it. Making a modification that always illegal activity shouldn’t be cause to ban you from use. Vehicles come from the factory able to break the law (speed limit), making them able to go even faster doesn’t get you immediately banned from the road. I’m all for supporting the developer/artist, but think most distribution methods aren’t greatly funding them anyway. Now if I could download the game for free and then pay the actual responsible party an amount I desired, that would be awesome. Imagine paying $20 for a game, knowing all that money went to the developer and not $18 to steam/PSN/etc and $2 to the developer (or whatever the ratio is). Most games I’ve pirated have been because I’m compulsive, I haven’t played most of them, nor will I probably ever. I just want to have access to them if at any point I ever get the desire to play said game. Any game that I’ve honestly played an enjoyed I’ve tried to purchase. Once developers get rid of the DRM/limitations of software I’d probably purchase more honestly. Brandon Sanderson has released both of his Stormlight Archive kindle versions without DRM, and I have purchased both. I would love to purchase the hardback versions, but my wife hates books taking up space. I always get my movies with the digital copy for a few bucks more. They should really include digital copies of the physical copy of everything I think. Books should come with kindle copies especially, at least if purchased via Amazon. Perhaps if they loosened their grip on DRM they would be surprised by increases in sales. I know there are still people who will pirate anything they can, there will be people who will pay for everything they own, and there will be people in between. I just think it might be more enjoyable for everyone if they lightened up on the DRM. Sorry for the randomness of my thoughts, I just kept thinking of points and trying to squeeze them in where they might work. Oh, I’m an in-betweener of piracy if you didn’t catch that. I pay for everything I highly regard, never at release any more though, why pay $60 when I can get it for $20 a year down the line. I’ve bought numerous games I’ve yet to play, and pirated numerous games I’ve also yet to play. I love running CFW on my devices for hard drive loaders, etc, but I also love owning the actual media. I find it a bit excessive to charge me $10 for a digital copy of a PS1 game that I physically own. There should be a way to get a copy if you own the original. Wal-Mart’s VUDU service is awesome b/c of the disc to digital it offers. $2 for a digital copy of your physical media is a small price to pay for something you had previously purchased. Anyway, I doubt I’ll come back and read any replies to this post, just wanted to add my thoughts.

    • Teddy Treebark

      If games didn’t have that kind of DRM, people could just share games with their friends nonstop. There’s already lots of gamesharing going on, except it’s greatly stemmed due to limited licenses. 3 licenses should be more than enough, most consoles last for a very long time if cared for.

  3. Ashley

    I would have to disagree on the Minecraft front. I’ve played it for years now, purchased it on the PC, iOS, and PS3 now. The do believe that the license agreement for PS3 stated specifically about NOT trying to reverse engineer the code blah blah. I know the original statement was that once it reached “complete” status, then Notch would release the code and all that. I kind of wonder if they aren’t starting to veer away from that. There are a few other arguments I don’t feel like thinking on I’m sure, but I don’t get the, share it for free, vibe from them anymore. Though Minecraft is still awesome and I don’t mind supporting the team. Wish they’d get updates out faster for non-PC ports thought…..

  4. wraddek

    So your point is that $75 for a new game when you were a teenager warrants piracy, but the $100 it costs nowadays (without a ps+ sub.) for a new game doesn’t?? I think you fail to take into account that there still are poor teenagers who cant afford new games (myself being one), piracy DOES still make sense, now more than ever. A good article nonetheless, thanks Wololo

    • Youre so cool! I dont suppose Ive read anything like this before. So good to seek out somebody with some authentic ideas on this subject. realy thanks for starting this up. this web site is one thing that’s wanted on the internet, someone with a little originality. helpful job for bringing one thing new to the web!

    • Awesome! I can appreciate a "non-pattern" since I also tend to rebel against patterns and pinning (and sometimes measuring). I'm heading downstairs now to raid my Goodwill bag full of sweaters…thanks!![]

  5. eriol

    piracy make sense in developing countries where video games are not published locally and they have to import. it’s actually quite frustrating for people outside three main market (us, eur, jap) to find legit games with affordable price. nintendo is the worst contender because it imposes region lock.

  6. Firebuble

    i pirate a great amount of games, but in my country a game cost 1/4 of the average salary… rent a house is like $150 usd… wather, electricity, gas and internet (the whole combo) its like $40… eating $50, add to this taxes, entretainment, sex, alcohol, etc…

    and the average salary is $280 USD

    and i spent 6 years of my life on a university to earn $320 usd a month

    • Kengetsu

      Man, where do you live? I wish my rent, electric, and internet was that cheap. If it was like that I would buy all the games!

      On a different note though, there are still people who don’t make enough money to afford video games and resort to pirating, myself included on occasion. However, like one other person has said here, I wish companies would release free copies of the content (think like a demo but more long form) allowing you to play a portion of the game. There has been quite a few games that have released and I knew that I wouldn’t really like them but would at least like to see what it is like for myself. Another thing I really think should be a thing is for developers to have a source to donate to, kinda like how humblebundle allows for you to select who you want to have the money but just straight donations to different developers and leave notes. People who have money will pay for what they enjoy and more often than not be willing to give a little extra. Being able to directly give to a developer with a little note on how much you enjoyed their work or possible feedback about something would be amazing.

  7. Jethro

    Well, I pirated the games that I know I will only play once, I bought the games that I am collecting. Games are horrendously expensive in my part of the world, if we are comparing income to the spendings.

  8. home of the pirate

    A bad try at a plug riskyourrisk.. Go to this website so they can get money from ads just by you browsing their site.. Oh and by the way the games suck.. so hurry and get all the crappy games before their gone..

  9. Piddles

    Just because you’re an adult and can afford to buy your games now doesn’t mean that piracy doesn’t have a place in this world.

    Consider region locking, unjustifiably high gouging prices, parts of the world where content is outright banned (Australia, China, etc), demo content without demos, the list can go on. I will pirate EVERYTHING before I make a buying decision. If I like it, I will pay for it. I own every system on the market from the last two decades and this hobby gets expensive. I have stockpiles with bookshelves filled to the brim with legitimately purchased games. But I am sick and tired of being shafted 60 bucks on a new game that was a complete pile of rubbish. Want a new example? Ground Zeroes. On the PS4 it was 40 bucks…for ONE level. One level, re-skinned repeatedly over the course of what, 5 missions? With each mission taking approximately only 10-15 minutes to clear, max. My first playthrough only took 1 hour. After that, I was able to clear the entire disc’s content in less than an hour with practice. My overall playtime was only 3 hours and I’m already done with it. I could have spent less money going to 2 movies and buy concessions and still have more enjoyment out of it.

    Just because sales exist, and you’re a “grown up” with a job, doesn’t mean piracy isn’t as important as it always has been and will be. It teaches us that the world isn’t all good intent. Some people are just out to take as much of our hard earned money as they can possibly get. And if they give us a little bit of garbage instead from time to time…it’s still not “okay”.

  10. poueeeet

    I don’t want to pirate anymore since I have a job and like to collect the games and the ability to play them anytime without hassle.

    In our case, the Vita, I just want the ability to play the PSP games (UMD) I purchased and that I can’t even buy on my region PSN (ASIA), they just have nothing, really nothing, not even MGS PW playable on Vita.

    Another PSN account? If Sony change the way it is to switch accounts on vita, why not. As it is today? no way.

    Playing on the original console? seriously I don’t want to touch my PSP 1000 anymore, plus my battery is dead and it became impossible to find (a quality) one and new, even online.

    So yeah, thanks piracy, even if I’d say thanks to the hacking instead.

  11. Obito

    Non-piracy lets you have digital games.
    Piracy lets you have physical games.
    It’s not a matter of price, but of assuring that you are always allowed to access your content, regardless of online accounts.

  12. MoNo

    Good article, but I just want to clear some:

    1. I think piracy would affect the growth of a project (game in this case), because when a game got pirated, the developers will let it go and never go to release a new version of that in fear of piracy.

    2. when you use pirated games you will get a huge amount of games for about no cost, yep, this is good, at least at first glance, you have countless games that you would never come to play them all, even if you play 24 hours a day. (when I was teenager, I had about 100 PC games on CD’s and it was good for me, I was happy)

    3. for playing all these huge amount of games, you have to play as much as you can, to taste them all.
    and after playing them, definitely you will find out that several of them don’t suit you.

    4. and the negative side is here, you have so many games to play and you can not give up playing and it’s affecting your life badly, specially as a teenager.

    5. so in my opinion, a way to prevent piracy, is not bad at all, this way, you as a gamer, have to choose your games very intelligently and considering your pocket too, so you may have a new game every 2 or 3 months, and then you have time to play the game you just bought, that’s a good thing, you have a game that you can play and enjoy instead of having 100 games and not having enough time to just play them once. I think restricting piracy has more positive effects than negative ones, and it’s a good thing, at least for our children.

  13. lehur

    I do not quite understand it
    but I can say that piracy is usually more convenient than buy it legally
    e.g Is there anyone who have the same problems for activating office 2013, Eventhough we buy it legally, it is really frustrating for the time we spent to activated it
    So, in the end we use activator

  14. thesatanist

    IMHO digital goods have their fair share of issues, like failed activations, inability to use when offline, and in general, the presence of DRM is an issue that can prevent the interoperability between systems, now or in the future. There’s also the moral issue about companies making available digital goods now to generate a sale but not giving any warranties to the customer to be able to access his/her content years from now. Case in point: origin games. I can’t play Crysis because the original activation servers went offline. A Need for Speed game got the license revoked. No one stands by the customers but other customers themselves at forums. Companies can do whatever they want to their licenses after they generate a sale.

    But my main point is: Has anyone thought about preserving digital goods for the future? Piracy allows you that. As long as you have access to the original device or even an emulated one, you can recreate the original release. But digital goods with all their licensing, activating and DRM issues are not planned for the long run, just to generate a quick buck for the companies. In 20 years perhaps I can dig up a pirated version of X game/app/rom/video/mp3/flac, and play it as long as I have a computer. If you legally bought a digital version of the same good, could you be certain that you would be able to do the same? I doubt so, given that we’re not even certain that those companies will still be in business in 2-3 years!

    So, piracy had/had and still have a point to exist. At least for the people who care a little about preservation.

  15. RiotDX

    I used to take a firm stance against piracy of any kind, until, after a long string of disappointing used game purchases, one particular game that I had preordered turned out to be so horrifically bad that I changed my stance completely. I tried to return my purchase to GameStop, but of course “it’s a giant sack of ***” isn’t a valid reason they accept for returns. They actually had the nerve to offer me their “fair going rate” of $3.50 to sell it back to them, the day after I had picked it up as a preorder. Needless to say, I’ve not purchased anything from a GameStop since then either.

    That being said, I never pirate games I know will actually be worth the cost, and if the games I do pirate turn out to be worth their price I purchase them at full price as well. I view my personal piracy more as “extended demos” than anything else. Outside of that, I think the piracy/hacking scene has pushed developers to release new services that wouldn’t have been created otherwise. Think of our remote play PC application for PS4. Sony didn’t seem to have any intent to build their own until an enterprising hacker created his own software for doing it, and then suddenly Sony realized that their customers actually DID want it because they were paying somebody else for his hack.

  16. Tuxbot123

    I really don’t agree with you.
    I’ll take an example (I’m French so I’ll talk in €) : Mirror’s Edge Catalyst. As I finished the first one a lot of times, I just have to buy Catalyst and play it. But, almost at the same moment, Uncharted 4 was released. Both games costs between 65 and 70€.
    I just economized for 6 months to buy a (refurbished) PS4, so I just can buy for 60€ of games.
    So that’s why piracy is a good thing for me : as I don’t have money, I can crack the game and play it !
    Now, let’s talk about the devs. Sure, devs worked on their game for months, and they have to feed them and their family, but I really doubt my 60€ will make a difference on Dice’s devs salary. For the little games, I like to buy them, to support the dev(s) (for exemple, I’ve buyed Life Is Strange when the 5th episode came out), but I don’t think Kaz Hirai needs my money.

    About the PS+, I am really disappointed about the lasts month on the Vita (PSP games or games everyone already have), and this PS4’s month is really bad…

  17. A. Dragon

    In third world countries sofware and hardware industry is a nightmare of expensive and inasequible stuff, especially due to the big economical challenges we face. Piracy is indeed what keeps alive game industry on these countries.

  18. Davide

    Today VG Psn\XBL\Steam store, is a copy of P…y (No cover\No Manuals\Download) So if there is 1 think make sens is it.
    And until there is in this world,people with 0 money,0 work etc. until Share\Crack\Hack etc. exist,no one can stop only can delay.
    it make sense for more than 9999 reason,for drm anticonsumer,for protect who buy original games that not work offline\keywrong etc
    Who dont make sense for me,is that VG\DEV need be a “Work” for “Money” and someone for hav fun need PAY for it ,it make sense for repair “paired drive mobo\bluray unique key”,it make sense for people freedom and for poor,it make sense 4 more,don’t forget,one day,in future,without p…y, 1 Image,1 Video,1Mp3 get from internet can be also “P….y” for someone,kill freedom,and who dont like p….y,who don’t agree share,who dont want poor people play,it’s free to go buy think no pirates stop him to do,Can be one day in future,someone decide all image that you use in blog (or also only text),is drm protect and tell u is a pirate..,So for me it make sense because is a sort of freedom,revolution,protest in this system society and i dont care dev-drm ecc.

    p.s. don’t waste your time to write me offensive reply “you thieft” “you *** pirate” etc. i dont care i dont read it…and if you want judge me i dont care,I make already 1 process in my country about piracy vs sony microsoft and nintendo and i also win it.

  19. Brenza

    Well, let’s start from the beginning… I was born in 1990, my parents too did (and does) not like video games.
    My parents didn’t give any weekly\monthly money (they are not monsters, it’s quite common where I live.. they just bought me stuff when i needed and gave me money to spend with friends but basically I had not any stash – except occasionally grandma’s “little” gifts ♥) so I had no way to afford any video game.

    When I was 18 I took a summer job and I bought my first console, a PS3, just a week after the first jailbreak for 3.41 got released (what a concidence.. =P) . I had so many games to try but I could not afford them all so I bought a 2TB usb hard drive and let’s just say I had my enjoyable moments, a lot…

    A couple years later I grabbed a second PS3 and since then I keep buying those games I enjoyed most every time I find them at a reasonable price.
    Recently I also bought 2 psvita (one still on ofw 3.18) and 2 ps4 (one is the 20th anniversary edition, ofw 1.72 i guess but I couldn’t get to open the package).
    I started buying discounted ps4 games long before I actually touched a dualshock4 and currently I still have to start many of them. I can actually say I agree with your point of view, piracy is quite meaningless compared to before!

  20. OneEyeAndWoodenLeg

    My story is very similar to yours, but in my case, the whole country got internet WAY after France and Europe in general did, not to say about Japan of US.

    However, my country had people who were selling illegal copies for SUPER cheap(about 2-3$ per game at the time. Now it’d be about 1-1.5). At the time, the best pubs and devs did to prevent it were either tricky stuff like questions from manual, or the first of those “Product keys”, or, perhaps, disk checks(there were others, but I didn’t meet them on my way). All of those were easily circumvented, dealers provided answers to questions, or a crack, or some other way to avoid that.
    And for kids like me, it was a saving.

    However, once a pirate – always a pirate.
    And while what you say is true, one can get games cheap right now, some points you make are LAUGHABLE, simply IRRELEVANT to a gamer.
    First of all, everyone’s taste in games is different, no matter how you look at that. I, for one, hate all that you call “AAA”(who thought of that stupid label? it doesn’t mean ***), and even if Soony gives me one on Plus, I’ll simply ignore Plus that month.
    Second, ANDROID games. Seriously, I do see a lot of people playing those in the subway, right, BUT! those are NOT gamers, but rather, the normal folks who know s**t about games. Irrelevant. Even for 0.00$ I would not go for an Android game.
    Third, PS Plus – yes, I use that service, it’s pretty cool and all, except for a single point – YOU HAVE NO CHOICE, it’s SONY who chooses what to give you, and your choice is only to take it or not. Thus, I only subscrive if I see a game I want to play(not to TRY, to PLAY). Thus, 1 or 3 months.

    Once a pirate – always a pirate. If I can – I will download the game and play it.
    It doesn’t prevent me from buying it later, when I have money, since I like collecting boxes.
    Of course, I cannot say that ALL pirates are doing things the way I am, but generally, piracy is long term friend of mine, and I will not just abandon it, and go to the side of those accusing it.