What happens when pirates play a game development simulator and then go bankrupt because of piracy?


So thats your reply about a buggy game that wasn’t finished? Just “Oh we’ll fix it?” How about you refund the poor persons money since it was your fault that the game wasn’t completed.

This is why I can’t stand NA developers. They release buggy games and then set about fixing it. How about you do what Japanese development companies do and that is to delay the game until all the bugs that stop the game from being played are fixed? Or is it just the case of being too greedy for their own good?


Racist much?

When developing a new product, the amount of testing that goes into the product varies based on the size of the company. This is true in ALL sectors, not just software. It it also true in all countries, including the US, Japan, South Korea, Germany, the UK, France, Brazil… just to name a few.

Now, most products are built using parts from other suppliers and the final product is merely a case of putting the components together. The testing is spread along the chain of suppliers, with each company testing their own products. Also, for most products, the testing required is fairly standardised, and can be automated safely.

When you start developing software, the rules start to change. Whilst code re-use and common libraries are regular features in the software industry, a lot of software development is still about re-inventing the wheel, rather than using someone else’s wheel. This means that the developers must test the software themselves. And a small German duo like @PatrickKlug and @DanielKlug (ie Greenheart Games), cannot be expected to own every possible combination of software and hardware available on the planet.

Thus, a product that works in most scenarios may be released on good faith. It is not until the masses actually start using the product that some bugs crop up. So the developers start working to fix them. Then along comes someone who claims to know how the industry works, and mouths off about how the game should never have been released. I must admit, the first 100% perfect piece of software from any country (Japan included) should be heralded with a huge fanfare… unfortunately such a piece of software DOES NOT EXIST, and likely never will.

  1. You struggle because there aren’t that many people interested in paying for the game, regardless of whether they can pirate it or not.
  2. A $8 price point isn’t low enough to dissuade piracy. The only price-point that stops piracy is $0. $4 is four times as appealing, though. Pricing is like the square-cube law.
    3a) Devs can already sleep easy, as long as they make a truly innovative and fun game(minecraft/terraria as indie-examples).
    3b) Money paid doesn’t mean greater risks taken, money is given to the risks that pay off. In the terms of hollywood, cracked wrote it best; http://www.cracked.com/article_20406_5-reasons-superhero-movies-are-bubble-that-will-soon-burst.html But that also applies to games. A risky but innovative game can rake in all the money. Refusing to take that risk can also rake in tons of money, with a ton spent in the first place. With great risk comes great reward. More money in the first place is wanting to have a security-blanket for if your project fails, which is how it works after you make a hugely successful product. You have to make the project first, to get the money. (Minecraft is, again, a great example of this. And also a widely pirated example.)
    3c) Always-on will always be attractive… to publishers. Developers likely hate it because it forces them to write shitty software to support the networking requirements, when they could be focusing on making a better game.
    3d) More awesome games are gotten by taking a risk to make a more awesome game, not trying to convince people that piracy is bad. The best way to handle piracy… is to ignore it.


I believe they are from Austria. Just wanting to point that out.


Either way, it’s a bit far removed from North America :tongue:


I like how you applied a mathematical law to something with no source or proof. That’s definitely how shit works. You can’t just throw random words around and pretend it applies.



That’s exactly my point. I don’t want to create free-to-play games because most of them need to be designed to generate money instead of just being fun. I hate the trend of free-to-play/social games in the industry but as you say, piracy is one reason that this trend exists!

3a) Devs can already sleep easy, as long as they make a truly
innovative and fun game(minecraft/terraria as indie-examples).

So, you are saying that every game dev is required to either have tons of money to fund themselves for years or they have to create the perfect super game before they are allowed to be able to sleep?

Game Dev Tycoon is our first game and obviously not perfect but if no one had purchased the game (after enjoying it for hours!), could we have ever improved in the future? no!


Austria/Australia actually so we have fairly good time-zone coverage :slight_smile:



I don’t know where you get the idea from that we wouldn’t refund. If you want a refund write to support@greenheartgames.com but regarding the Linux version we had help from some great people and we are about to work on the update which should solve most issues.,


A hit game can’t be predicted. Terraria and Minecraft are based on the same concept, Minecraft made sales that rivaled high-budget games and Terraria had significantly less success. Final Fantasy 7 had a lot of faults and the localisation outright sucked, yet it is one of the best selling and most highly acclaimed games there are. Daikatana had a marketing budget that could be compared to the budget spend on producing a James Cameron movie, yet the game sold absolutely horribly, despite being made by a well-known developer and Grandfather of FPS Games (“John Romero is about to make you his bitch!”) - The Game was quite decent too.

The issue reminds me of VVVVVV - the guy who made it quit his job to work on the game. While being an interesting indie game, the guy who made the game had no savings and got into a financial crisis mid-development, because he took about 6 months longer than he expected to produce the game. I agree fully with you that developers need support, even if their games aren’t TEH BESTEST GAME EVAAHHH


I have the full edition and every damn game I make says “sir people are pirating our game” then there are the options to sue them or to warn them, is there a way to research a part of a engine that makes your game crack-proof? every game I get 10-10-10-10 it says that people are pirating my games, I have like 1 mil fans and I just sue em’ but I lose like 5K fans D: so sad


Just warn them. Instead of a cash boost you get more fans. Also, this appears for me only once each game, and I always use “Warn them” so… Also, to make a game crack-proof you’d need a game that is unplayable. (e.g. Simcity g)


I just read the story about your game. And I like what you did!
I haven’t heard of GDT before, nor have I played it. But I feel like I should support you. So… I just bought it :smile:


Congratuliations on the idea. Funny to see the reality distortion some seem to be experiencing ;).
Anyway, I bought your game after reading the blog post just to support your great idea to tackle the software “piracy” problem (Although I admit that I do not know if I actually will find time to play it).

I hope more developers will find a way to reward their honest customers instead of punishing them with DRM for actually spending their money on the game.



Brilliant move generating publicity with the torrent! I saw the news about the game the other day and picked it up just because I thought it was funny that the game messed with the people who played the cracked version like that.



Hello Patrick,

I’m developer like you and I’m not a gamer, but because your move…I bought the game!



Hi GreenHeartGames!
Our names are: Ilay, Shahaf, and Or, and we had a school assiangment about Human Rights.
We had a hard times about trying to think about a Right being hurt, so we had associations conversation, and I got the idea about your anti-piracy move.
We thoght about it a little-bit, and we found your move as the right thing to do. For our opinions, you guys were a bit soft, while you could plant files who takes the people IP-Adress and go to the court with it.
For conclusion, we want to thank you for the awesome game of yours, and for the oprotunity for us to do our assiangment.


How about this angle: If people hadn’t pirated your game, you wouldn’t have been able to pull off this little publicity stunt. All things considered, piracy helped you more than it hurt you (how many people heard of your game just because of this action? I certainly did).
Making a blanket statement about how piracy is bad, mkay is all well and good, but complaining about how it hurts you in particular when your entire business plan actually relied on your game getting pirated is just hypocritical.


It’s an analogy, not an application.


My point is, a single mother gets sued for millions of dollars for
downloading $30 worth of music

Suing for millions of dollars for $30 worth seems more a problem of the US law system - in Germany the amounts sued for are somewhat more reasonable (although not totally so).

My point is, a single mother gets sued for millions of dollars for
downloading $30 worth of music. What happened to blizzard for selling
a game that was incomplete, that didnt work the first couple days due
to not spending enough money on servers to handle the spike, and
falsely advertised game content on the box that wasn’t in the game due
to making a launch date without spending tons of cash to make new

In an ideal society one could sue them too, not happen too soon. However, this is clearly an area where the Internet has helped in empowering consumers (both happy and unhappy) to get their word out. I think the net will be that companies treating their customers badly will fail more likely than before - a good thing!

Can I loan my car to a friend who would otherwise have to purchase a
car to get around? If I share a vehicle I have (in the software
industries pov) stolen a sale from them by providing transportation to
someone who otherwise was about to go buy a car.

Again my position is kind of “formal”: It is up to the manufacturer of the good to decide what people can do with the good. If car companies would put in their selling contract “you cannot have anybody than you drive the car”, it simply would not fly as car sharing is obviously good.

“would people still build porsche cars? Invent new things? sounds like
socialism to me…” Personally I think they would and the games
industry is a perfect example. One can argue that in socialism there
might not be as much incentive to innovate or invent, I say why not?
Why does money always have to be the only motivator? Why can’t I just
be fascinated with something and have a dream of doing something great
regardless of wether it makes me rich or not. Its the same with
capitalism, many of the richest people got that rich because they had
a passion to make a dream come true, and it turned out for them that
so many people wanted their product that they got rich. I think most
indie developers just want to make games, sure they want to survive
but they arent going to be bitter if they aren’t millionaires in 10
years. What happens when they are millionaires? Activision happens.
Activision imo is a perfect example of a comparison with socialism.
They get those big name houses. Their schedule turns into “make 2
shooters, 1 car, 1 sports and 1/2 of an rpg a year. Make 10% more
money than last year, hire 2-6 of the highest graduating programmers
artists etc” whatever. There is no innovation, there is no reason to
invent new things. I think the call of duty series speaks for itself
here. There are countless articles on sites like ign, pcworld talking
about the stagnation of franchises and companies massive fears of new
ips. Companies have gotten so big that they can’t afford a game to
fail, most AAA games take more resources than a company even has, and
if people dont like it, bye. This is a perfect example of capitalism
failing with innovation/invention etc, places where is should top
socialism, it is now failing.

Although I am no gamer and hence can’t follow the details, I do agree with many things you say. IMHO, there has be a VERY bad trend in the past 20-30 years: 25 years ago big companies were led by “experts in the field”: Microsoft by Bill Gates, Chemical Companies by Chemists, Car Companies by “car dudes” and so forth. As of today, most company CEOs have a bl**dy MBA or law background. They can crunch numbers, increase effectiveness, talk “strategy” - but the core value of any good company is creating good products. Today, the focus all too often is on cost savings, marketing, risk aversion. This all does not help if you are selling cars, video games, mobile phones because your competitors do the exact same things. So the success stories of past (Nokia) and present (Apple, Google) is often exactly as you have written - passionate people rather than greedy people.

However, I still think this can be fixed without moving from capitalism to full-blown socialism. The funny bit about capitalism these days is even the CEO of a big public company (think Tim Cook) has very LITTLE power of decision: his main job is to make profits for the shareholders in the next three months… I am somewhat hopeful that we will get back to a bit more healthy form of capitalism - but that will require some massive changes in the way people evaluate stocks, in the way large companies are controlled, in the way board of directors give guidance and compensation rules to CEOs (how about a bonus for 5 year share price development rather than for yearly?).

I’m writing too much so as for your last questions, first, I think
software piracy is a GREAT thing. I think it was as inevitable as
freeing the slaves. Activision is a monopoly in the games industry
wether anyone wants to admit or not and because the government doesn’t
have time to deal with it customers are doing it for them. I see
piracy as a force that is breaking up monopolies in the industry and
has forced more innovation/invention than I have seen in the industry
in my lifetime. I think another huge point here is when you say you
have the choice" don’t buy". This isnt a choice like it used to be.
You can say you have a choice to buy a cell phone, but do you really?
What kind of software company is going to hire you if they can’t ever
get ahold of you unless your at your house. What about breaking down
on the interstate? While not yet a necessity, its becoming clear that
owning a cell phone is getting more and more essential. You could
argue that people used to deal with it, but do you really want to be
the one saying people should be stranded or left for dead in an
emergencey because they couldn’t afford a contract with a provider
that is charged much much more than it needs to because of demand?
What ever happened to fairness?

Mmhh… I agree that people do need a cell phone these days (in most jobs anyway) - but I think in gaming the choice of ‘not buying’ is still very valid. While I certainly appreciate to get ‘the other’ viewpoint explained in more depth, I am still not convinced “SW piracy is good”.

IMO free to play with microtransactions will take over for new ips.
The risk of failure drops incredibly and people are willing to spend
more money on a game the more time they have invested in it.
Regulation of free to play will either come about quickly to keep
companies from ripping people off, or imo “pirate server” will be as
big a word as piracy in the next few years" The old pricing model
still has a place imo and I can a game coming out free to play,
turning into a $60 game for a sequal based on its success. The other
thing f2p brings to the table are players. AI can be one of the most
time consuming parts of creating a game, f2p brings you smarter
ai(other players) than you could ever program, free of cost and time.
TFC and league of legends are the idols if your thinking about free to

Agree on free-to-play as good model. Do you think it would not have come out w/o SW piracy? Side note: I tried to get into LOL a bit and failed miserably… Personally any game where I have to invest days of prep work before being able to play is not for me - just a shift in life priorities I guess …

Walking through my grocery store one day a lady was handing out free
hot pretzels with cheese…free. For examples sake, say I took a bite,
like them and bought a box semi regularly. What is the difference
between me and the guy who stole a box to try them, not wanting to
waste money if they sucked, liked them and now buys them semi
regularly(lets be real he isnt gonna steal every time). Jail him just
because he wasn’t there the day they were handing them out? If so
shouldn’t I look at the lady giving away free pretzels as an act of
hostility? an attempt to get me hooked on their product that I never
would have tried, should i compare her to a crack dealer giving out
free hits? I think many acts of piracy can be looked at the same way.
Some are theft(oh freakin well). Some you should be thankful for.

I think (most of) humankind is simply not mature enough to decide for themselves when ‘stealing’ would be considered an act of trying with the option to buy later and when not. Which brings me back to square one of my argument: It is the producers decision whether he wants to give away free pretzels, beer trials, SW games, Porsche test drives - not the buyers. More so, if the buyer doesn’t like the producers decision he should not sidestep this - I think chaos lurks then.

Piracy could be a criticism of your game. Maybe less people would
pirate if the graphics would have been better etc. But its looked at
black and white, and if every pirate on earth is a stealing thug. We
could talk all day and never cover all the bases, its just far too

I agree on piracy being complex. Hey, even more complex than I thought :slight_smile: I still don’t think it is ‘morally’ or legally right - but we don’t have to agree on everything… I certainly enjoyed the discussion!


Ditto :wink: