News Article

Renegade Kid Clarifies 3DS Piracy Comments

Posted by Andy Green

"If we cannot make money from developing games we can no longer develop games"

Recently Renegade Kid co-founder Jools Watsham sparked off a conversation about piracy on the 3DS. In a blog post he stated that if piracy was to get bad on the handheld he would have no choice but to pull support for the system.

In a second blog post on the topic, Watsham has clarified his comments saying how he has "always been a huge supporter of Nintendo":

What saddens me is that some people have taken my comments as an attack on Nintendo, the 3DS, and the players. Nothing could be further from the truth.

I wrote this: “If piracy gets bad on the 3DS, we will have no choice but to stop supporting the platform with new games.”

This does not mean I am taking a stand against piracy. This does not mean I am taking my business elsewhere in an action of protest. What this means is if we cannot make money from developing games we can no longer develop games. That is what can happen if piracy gets bad. If enough people choose to illegally obtain copies of my games for free instead of paying for them, it directly affects my business and my home.

In his previous post Watsham looked into how the DS was affected by piracy, speculating that Dementium II could well have sold less copies than its predecessor because of people downloading the game illegally. Hugo Smits, game designer at Goodbye Galaxy Games, wrote his own blog on the subject claiming piracy is often used as a scapegoat when games don't sell, and that there are several other reasons why they struggle at retail including availability, price and quality.

In his latest blog post Watsham explains how he understands that piracy will always exist, but markets need to adapt to combat the threat of illegal downloads:

I don't think there is a solution to piracy. It will always exist in some form. We just need to make sure the price of games is affordable. We need to make it easy to buy and own games. The availability and access players have to their games needs to be at least as easy and convenient as the ROM sites make it to illegally download a game file. Ideally, it should be better. If the player's only question is, "buy or not buy?", and not dealing with issues such as, "how do I transfer ownership of this game to my new system?" then we'll have minimized the appeal of piracy.

So there you have it, Renegade Kid isn't planning to pull its support for 3DS any time soon, so long as the system fends off piracy well enough — something it seems capable of doing considering the amount of system updates.

What are your thoughts on this? Should the games industry be doing more to combat piracy by making games easier to get hold of and afford? Fire-off in the comments section below.

[via joolswatsham.blogspot.co.uk]

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User Comments (69)

C-Olimar

#1

C-Olimar said:

Oh thank God, the much-desired Planet Crashers sequel is back on!

Still so bitter about that game >:(

Geonjaha

#2

Geonjaha said:

Yeah...except the number of people who choose to pirate has no effect on the number of loyal customers who never pirate games. Piracy is always an option - and most of the time people who pirate have no intention of paying for the game in the first place. There is no reason why piracy will suddenly become bad enough for games to stop being profitable just because a new platform is out.

bonham2

#3

bonham2 said:

@Geonjaha Exactly...

Most games sell their best when released, and roms aren't usually even available that early on. And most people downloading ROMS are not necessarily lost sales. I have never been into pirating, I still buy every game I really want, because as a collector, I like to have the physical media.

ueI

#4

ueI said:

I thought Renegade Kid's previous comment was pretty clear.

Windy

#5

Windy said:

In my posts in the first statement I tried to tell people the actions of Pirates effect a company greatly. Loss of income, Loss of Jobs, a company going belly up. According to other people none of that exists. But According to Mr. Watsham it does exist and effects his Life and home. I believe what Mr. Watsham is saying. Piracy costs the industry millions to combat and Loss of product by basically stealing. Now there is the issue of different economies across the world and games should be priced in those economies and are not, which isn't fair to a family who makes say 1200.00 in income to fork out 50.00 for a game. But I am not anywhere near rich and if I can't buy it I do without it. It doesn't make stealing right. Thats exactly what piracy is STEALING. The Sega Dreamcast is a perfect example of what Piracy can do to a system. Lucky for us Nintendo stuck with the DS. They could have stopped but they did not and we got some of the best games ever. But they could have dumped it because of piracy.

**Here come the people who say Piracy is not what caused the Dreamcast to go Belly up**

Windy

#6

Windy said:

@C-Olimar Please don't give anyone any ideas about a sequel to Planet Crashers. Now you talk about a game people got had on. Red Flags should have went up when there was little to no info before it's release. I downloaded it cause I thought it had online co-op. Not that co-op would have helped it any. Just a truly horrible game. Games this bad should get a price drop and they don't which is also truly horrible. But whoever does the pricing for the Eshop seems totally content to leave games like Planet Crashers and older games like Zenonia at full price. Zenonia is an excellent game but its also 99 cents in the android market, Its been in the Eshop for a few years now and has never been on sale it stays at 7.99.

eviLaTtenDant

#7

eviLaTtenDant said:

When games are not available on the VC or cost more than i find they're worth i just don't play them until they reach that point.
I'd like to see a system where buying games you already own on the Wii, Wii U or 3DS is a lot cheaper than it is atm though.

MasterManson

#8

MasterManson said:

if they offer best prices, the piracy is over... see the pc plataform in steam sales... now imagine if the common price is the same of the sales

Windy

#9

Windy said:

I will say this Nintendo Does not let you transfer your games to other systems you own and by doing so Creates A negative feeling from gamers towards them. If I knew a way to transfer the games I bought from the Eshop to my Extra 3DS I would do that. Would that make me a pirate?

TheSonicdude97

#10

TheSonicdude97 said:

@Windy I think you could transfer your games legally from your first 3DS to your extra one but you would have to do the complete Transfer Data from the System Settings and transfer everything to your extra 3DS. If that doesn't or didn't work cause of SD card downloaded games memory not transfering or something else then you could give Nintendo a call and ask someone there for help. (Btw, I completely agree with your words on piracy as stealing. )

theblackdragonAdmin

#11

theblackdragon said:

@TheSonicdude97: it's all or nothing, though, and it's limited as to how many times you can do it. Other companies make it much easier for you to transfer your stuff from old console to new console, which is kinda his point.

Furealz

#12

Furealz said:

Free-Beeing a game that you never payed for is like skipping on a meal! :/ Dishonest to the amazing producer such as Renegade Kid and pissing the poor guy off! @.@ Stop People's!

Bazly

#13

Bazly said:

I think what I find most frustrating about this standpoint is that the majority of games that this developer makes are eShop releases that are less than $10. Anybody who pirates a game that is only $10 NEVER INTENDED TO BUY IT IN THE FIRST PLACE. The people who plan to buy the game, will, because it's a quality game at a small fraction of the cost of a full retail release. I find it odd that developers are always blind to... simple logic. It's like they think we don't have brains and that if something's available for free we're all just going to start breaking our systems so we can steal everything.

I think this is my biggest issue with copyright law and developer's opinions on pirating: they're so worried about losing money that they instantly fear that we're all thieves who will do anything to get a game for free. Arg. Arg arg arg.

AVahne

#15

AVahne said:

@Bazly
A lost sale is a list sale. There is no defending those who pirate, even if the defense is unintentional.

shinokami

#16

shinokami said:

I honestly think Dementium II had a bad publicity. I didn't even realized the game existed until like a year after it was released so part to blame is themselves, not piracy. Piracy is a double edge sword, if you know how to use it, it can make you profit

C7_

#17

C7_ said:

This clarification doesn't make it any less of a bad statement; Piracy is still a problem on all platforms and if this is your attitude towards a problem that can never be completely cured then you're in the wrong market. The fact is nobody knows how much piracy even does to a game, and while it IS mostly negative I highly doubt that a game that is high quality and has been marketed properly (I have never even heard of dementium) will be ruined by piracy in comparison to sales.

That's not to say I support piracy; the only legit excuse is where it's flat out impossible to get legally in your region. Every other excuse is just self-justification and wrong. If it's something to do with the game, such as the game is too glitchy or not worth the money, it's apparently worth it if you're still going to the effort of getting it illegally, and if it's a matter of not being able to afford it or not buying it anyway, you're forgetting that video games are a luxury product and you do not HAVE to play any of them. And this point is moot anyway, as there are hundreds of games you can legally get for free.

Kilroy

#18

Kilroy said:

Yeah, publicity for the Dementium games were pretty poor. The only reason why I even knew of them was because a friend, who's really into horror games, knew about them.

As for Jools's comments: if you're so worried about maximizing profits, don't piss off your seemingly loyal fans by offering your most popular game on the iOS for 1/10 the price as on 3DS. Saying iOS gamers won't buy anything that's more than a buck or two is ridiculous. Most people don't mind paying a few for a high quality game.

Also, piracy is totally rampant on iOS, Jools. Not sure if anyone told you...

AugustusOxy

#19

AugustusOxy said:

"I don't think there is a solution to piracy. It will always exist in some form. We just need to make sure the price of games is affordable. We need to make it easy to buy and own games. The availability and access players have to their games needs to be at least as easy and convenient as the ROM sites make it to illegally download a game file. Ideally, it should be better. If the player's only question is, "buy or not buy?", and not dealing with issues such as, "how do I transfer ownership of this game to my new system?" then we'll have minimized the appeal of piracy."

A point I've been trying to make for a long time. Games cost to much, simple as that. iOS games win because they are free and advertise like crazy inside the actual game. I don't understand WHY Nintendo and other companies are so bloody pissy about allowing this sort of practice on their consoles, even in small doses.

I understand free games lower the value of priced games, but game trials are like a perfect hybrid of this concept. Its not a demo, its the full game, you're allowed to get into it, and if you wanna stay playing it you have to pay.

We have to start looking at things like this, people aren't going to spend much money on a tower defense game on the 3ds when then can get another one of their phone for a nickle.

Einherjar

#20

Einherjar said:

@AugustusOxy But why do people pay a truckload of money for a game like angry birds when there are countless other games like it for free on several flash game sites ? For me, things like DRM, DLC, especially stuff like pre order DLCs and the usual high price of a game are way bigger factors than "i could get a similar game for less"
People are pissed about things like "always online DRM" so they have to hack their games if they cant be online all the time. And if you have to hack your game to play it, youre most likely not willing to pay for it in the first place.
Or pre order DLC. If its only offered by retailers that may not be available to you, your missing out on stuff you already paid for (most DLC is on the disc anyway). The only way to get the full product ? Hack and / or pirate the DLC / Game.
A teased game never made it to your region and the device is region locked ? Hack your system.
Compared to other things like music and movies, games have a terrbily short shelf live. If you dont buy them instantly for the full price (wich is often way to high) your may be missing out on the game forever or may never be able to enjoy the complete producct because of pre order / first batch DLC codes.
The solution: Pirate the game afterwards.
What about the classics: The VC for instance was the perfect platform to conserve old games. But the stupid copyright war among developers ruines it. More and more games get removed because some sort of licensing issue. The original systems and game packs are getting really rare, expensive and get really fragile because their old age.
The solution: Pirate the games and emulate them.
IMO the smalles portion of game pirates do it because they dont want to pay for the games. Most of them do it, because the availability of newer titles and the funktionaloty of older games and systems are getting worse and worse.

rayword45

#21

rayword45 said:

^See this guy? He understands.

Don't want us to hack the system? Murder the region lock, screw DRM (already done) and enable cheap, easy development kits for those who like to make homebrew.

I assure you the only ones who will try to hack the system are pirates unless you really screw up homebrew capabilities.

HugoSmits

#22

HugoSmits said:

@Windy how do you know this ? and how does Jools know this ?

there hasn't been a system that did not have pirates, so we really cannot compare sales figures and stuff like that.

Your points and arguments have as much ground as if I would claim that 100% of the pirates would have never bought the game in the first place.

In many European countries buying games isn't an option!

we just don't know, and thus there is no way of telling if piracy really does have a effect.

I went shopping in Budapest today… I didn’t expect to find anything cheap. But the games are actually more expensive than in the Netherlands while the average salary here is 4 times lower than the average Dutch salary.

New Super Mario Bros U and Blackops U are around 86 dollars!
DS games like Mario Kart or Nintendogs are still around 50 euro!

Now imagine you only earn around 300 dollars a month!!!

DerpSandwich

#23

DerpSandwich said:

He's trying to save face and it's not working. He wasn't attacking anyone and no one is outright offended; he was just being whiny and blaming others for his problems. And there's no unsaying it all, no matter how hard he tries. Give it up, man.

Bazly

#24

Bazly said:

@Koto - But it's not a lost sale - that person would NEVER HAVE BOUGHT THE GAME ANYWAY. Yes, I am, in a way defending those who pirate. It's simple logic - people who pirate games, ESPECIALLY on a system (as opposed to on a PC), ESPECIALLY in the case of eShop games, would never have bought that game in the first place. If they WERE willing to EVER buy the game - they're SO CHEAP that they would just buy it. I refuse to believe that someone would actually think to themselves "Oh man, Pushmo / Mutant Mudds / Gunman Clive looks like such a cool game! But man... $8? / $2? That's REALLY going to hurt my wallet. I better steal it." I absolutely refuse to believe that pirating harms sales - it's all bull**** that companies make up because they don't like that certain individuals aren't paying for the content. Sorry, they wouldn't have paid for it EITHER WAY. Plain and simple.

theblackdragonAdmin

#25

theblackdragon said:

@Hugo: i've agreed with some of your other points, but your continued attempts to justify piracy by saying that games are too expensive in some parts of the world is something I find ridiculous. 'in many countries buying isn't an option' — bull. the option is there, but people apparently don't choose to pay those prices. theft is theft is theft.

If you choose to be ok with the idea that people may have stolen your games may be stealing them now, that's your call. is it so unreasonable to expect that other devs may disagree, though? you're right, there are no hard numbers out there to support the idea that piracy has cost the industry millions, billions, whatever — but then that goes the opposite way too. you have no more hard facts to present in these arguments than users like Windy do.

WaLzgiStaff

#26

WaLzgi said:

@theblackdragon: I actually agree. By your logic Hugo, is it okay for me to steal expensive clothes because I can't afford them otherwise? Video games are still luxuries, not necessities. There is no justification for piracy.

Bazly

#27

Bazly said:

@theblackdragon - I partially agree and partially disagree. I really don't think games are too expensive, and I CERTAINLY don't think eShop games are too expensive.

On the other hand, in SOME CASES, there ISN'T actually an option. With games, this isn't often the case, but there are certainly examples of eShop and retail games that come out in one region and take months or even over a year for them to be released elsewhere, if they're ever released at all. Options really can be limited.

Then if you factor in other media - comics, television, music, books, movies - there are hundreds upon hundreds of examples of things that you simply cannot get access to from outside of your own country. What do you suggest one does in these cases? Companies make some small attempts to remedy this: creating specialty stations for foreign content on digital cable or satelite TV - Netflix really helps to bridge the gap when it comes to finding foreign content - but options are still very limited. Living in North America I'm bombarded with nothing but American content, and despite living IN Canada STRUGGLE to find DVDs or my favourite Canadian shows - not to mention the countless Japanese and British television that I would love to be able to watch but literally cannot.

Did I really "steal" these things? What would you suggest I do instead, move to other countries and purchase their hardware and software there?

This rant doesn't necessarily apply to gaming as much, but it certainly aplies to this discussion.

RenegadeJools

#28

RenegadeJools said:

@HugoSmits Nintendo claimed piracy caused a 50% drop in European sales in 2010 (http://www.asahi.com/english/TKY201004190412.html).

I saw the affects too. Based on my experience and conversations with publishers regarding the DS from 2007 onwards, the DS market was very much affected by piracy in 2010 to the point where publishers no longer wanted to risk investing their money into it. This results in less work for developers, i.e. lost jobs, etc.

You said, "There hasn't been a system that did not have pirates, so we really cannot compare sales figures and stuff like that." True, but there was a period where the DS was not pirated and a period when it was heavily, and the data comparison between the two periods.

So, yes, there really is a way of of telling if piracy really has a effect.

theblackdragonAdmin

#31

theblackdragon said:

@Bazly: Yes. I do expect you to go out of your way to legally locate and purchase things you enjoy. If your interests are obscure enough to where you would only be able to find them in the country they were created, yes, I do expect you to find a proxy to send you items or to go there in person to procure them. I'm not sure why that's so hard to understand.

also, please — and this goes for everyone — we don't need to know about anyone's personal escapades with regards to piracy. that has nothing to do with the article at hand. please, stop with the personal anecdotes, let's keep the conversation more general. thanks in advance!

Bazly

#33

Bazly said:

@theblackdragon - Haha you cannot be serious right now. Travelling to another country is not simply "going out of your way". I'm impressed that you live the kind of life where you can just travel wherever you want on a whim, but I on the other hand have never left this country and probably will not be able to afford to for a very long time.

Essentially what you are saying is that if you can't legally acquire something from where you are, and don't have the means to move or travel to another country to acquire it, then you aren't allowed to access it. But then... your argument becomes a bit invalid - the company who created it then, is STILL losing sales, so what difference does it make?

Bazly

#34

Bazly said:

@RenegadeJools - I certainly agree with you that the DS pirating situation got out of hand and really harmed the market, but I find it hard to believe that facts about the DS retail market can be applied to the 3DS eShop market.

Do you really think anyone would be unwilling to pay 2 - 10 dollars for a game and would instead pirate it? More importantly, what were the sale figures on Mutant Mudds like? Do you think anyone who purchased Mutant Mudds will be unwilling to pay for Mutant Mudds 2? I find it hard to believe that pirating can severely harm a market where games are offering great quality for such a small price.

RenegadeJools

#35

RenegadeJools said:

@rayword45 Piracy is bad on the PC and iOS too, for sure, but perhaps the fact that those audiences are so huge and the services provided are so convenient it helps maintain a healthy market where developers/publishers see a good sales?

@sweetiepiejonus Really?

@Bazly I would like to think that the eShop market is safer than the retail market due to the cost. It really depends on if the piracy market is easier to access than the eShop market.

Bazly

#36

Bazly said:

@RenegadeJools - I'm struggling to find the proper words to really... explain what it is I'm thinking right now in response to your comment and the comments that were made that sparked this discussion.

I think the main problem here is that when you say things like "It really depends on if the piracy market is easier to access than the eShop market." or "What this means is if we cannot make money from developing games we can no longer develop games. That is what can happen if piracy gets bad.", you sort of leave your fans sitting here thinking... "But... I was going to buy the game anyway."

While we understand that OTHER people may end up pirating the game, it feels like your assumption here is that if it's easier to get it for free, everyone will. This makes your fans angry because we have no intention of pirating Mutant Mudds 2. We're trying to support you and your statements continuously sound like you're assuming the worst from us.

sweetiepiejonus

#37

sweetiepiejonus said:

@RenegadeJools
Yes, really.
Just make games. Developers who look for scapegoats just sound like babies. You think you are the only one affected? Yet I don't see others whining about it.
I didn't play Demenitium because I didn't know it existed, but I'm sure it was great as people say. Sometimes it happens. Deal with it. I hope you don't have to make your point by penalizing paying customers, or whatever your excuse was, because Mutant Mudds is great and I'd hate to miss out on it.

Bazly

#38

Bazly said:

@sweetiepiejonus - I understand that you feel angry over the subject, discussion of piracy and copyright law in general gets me feeling very heated as well, but please try to remember that the person/people you are addressing and talking about are still people. How would you feel if some comments you made lead to a bunch of people outwardly saying they hate you and attacking you on a gaming website?

PuzzleMaster7

#39

PuzzleMaster7 said:

For a second, I thought that this article would clear a lot of things up, but apparently it hasn't. Piracy still can not be justified to me. Either way, I'm still looking forward to ATV Wild Ride 3d and Mutant Mudds 2.

sweetiepiejonus

#40

sweetiepiejonus said:

@Bazly
What do you mean? I'm not angry, don't hate anyone, and never said that. Saying that one's comments make you sound like a crybaby doesn't equal hate at all.
I was explaining why I made my first comment. Basically saying stop making excuses, and then trying to 'clarify' them. Keep making fun games and the honest people will usually buy them. Despite all the "facts" about piracy, there actually are honest 3DS owners who buy games.

Bazly

#41

Bazly said:

@sweetiepiejonus - I mean that calling people crybabies (or saying they SOUND like crybabies) or saying you "dislike" someone you don't even know based on some comments they made online isn't very productive conversation/discussion. Anyone who reads your posts can certainly see that they are hateful, or at the very least, hostile, which is why I assumed you were making them out of anger. If that's just how you debate then I fear what your reply to this post will be lol

RenegadeJools

#42

RenegadeJools said:

@Bazly Thank you for putting your reaction in such a polite and mature manner. I really appreciate it.

You're right. My statements may come across like I am speaking directly to honest, paying players and calling them potential pirates. This is not what I believe, and I did not intend for my words to suggest that. I am sorry for giving you that impression. I hope you can accept my apology.

Ironically, my fear is of players who do not read video game websites and seem to have no respect for games. When I talk about people choosing piracy because it is easier than paying for games, I am not imagining it is the players who I interact with daily on twitter or those players who are active on video game websites, like this one. Renegade Kid's fans are amazing and they have shown nothing but support for us and our games.

@sweetiepiejonus I understand where you're coming from, and hope you can see that I am just trying my best to create good games in a competitive market.

Bazly

#43

Bazly said:

@RenegadeJools - I can certainly accept your apology! I think the main fear here is that your fans feel like even if we do continue to support you, it won't be enough, and I think we need some reassurance of that. I would honestly be surprised if Mutant Mudds 2 isn't AT LEAST as succesful as Mutant Mudds - I don't think piracy will have a big impact there. BUT, we could debate that all day and get nowhere, so I guess we'll just have to see what happens! :P. I certainly hope it does end up doing well for you!

RenegadeJools

#44

RenegadeJools said:

@Bazly Thank you! :)

Like I said in my previous blog post, we have many games lined up for the 3DS.

Believe it or not, I am a very optimistic person. I have faith that the 3DS market will stay healthy.

MagicEmperor

#45

MagicEmperor said:

I'm surprised people misconstrued Watsham's earlier comments to begin with. I thought he made his point concisely. Renegade Kid has always supported Nintendo, so why would they suddenly attack the company and its fans? Well, it's good that Watsham clarified himself, if only to show those "some people" that RK was not, in fact, threatening its fans.

EaZy_T

#48

EaZy_T said:

I found Dementium II when I bought an ambassador 3DS. I found it by searching for DS horror titles. I didn't have a DS, so my purchase don't figure into release sales figures.

Keep 'em coming RK! :)

sweetiepiejonus

#49

sweetiepiejonus said:

@Bazly
No no. I have no hate for anyone. Anything I ever say here is nothing but discussion, and never personal. Certainly not towards someone I respect as a developer, and I realize it may not have seemed that way as the term 'crybaby' probably wasn't the best choice of words. I meant no ill will towards Jools or anyone else.

@RenegadeJools
I appreciate your reply. I know you're doing you're best and as I said Bazly, I respect you as a dev and think Mutant Mudds is great. And hope you know that there are lots of honest people who will buy products even when stealing the same thing would be so easy.

WaveyChristmas

#51

WaveyChristmas said:

Dementium III in stereoscopic 3D, with the graphical power of the 3DS + Stylus touch screen based controls? Yes please! It would stand out even more considering the 3DS is completely lacking in the first person genre.

rayword45

#53

rayword45 said:

@Bazly About the whole "Not in my region" thing, I see it two ways.

No release in your region and it's region-free? Too bad, pay up sucker.
No release in your region and it's region-locked? Pay up because the only way you can pirate it is if you have a hacked system, which also has legal region-lock removal.

Scribbler

#55

Scribbler said:

@Windy No, no, no, NO! The Dreamcast did NOT die because of piracy. The Dreamcast died because of previous infighting between the U.S. and Japan branches of SEGA and all the idiotic decisions made over dodgy support of the SEGACD, 32X and Saturn that split the consumer base and betrayed the trust of the loyal fan-base. Dreamcast was SEGA's last ditch effort to stay afloat and they knew it. Sony darn well knew it, too, and convinced potential buyers to wait for the imminent release of the PS2 instead of wasting money on the potential moneysink. Piracy didn't kill the Dreamcast. The Dreamcast was already DOA, if Sony had anything to say about it.

In fact, the original PlayStation was notorious for being ridiculously easy to hack and playing copied games on it was quite common. However, developers still flocked to the system because it MADE MONEY! The N64, on the other hand, was pirate-proof (at first) because of Nintendo's paranoid adherence to the cartridge format, but it cost them dearly with the loss of Square, Capcom, Konami, et al.

paburrows

#56

paburrows said:

I love his last quote how the transferability needs to become a lot easyer then downloading, as I said before my Wii broke down and I wanted to just get a new one and transfer the downloaded games and then I found out that Nintendo doesn't allow that and that all downloaded games are tied to the downloaded console. Frankly Nintendo needs to loosen these sort of things, piracy is always going to happens as this guy said, but if Nintendo made things easyer to download and transfer then pirating then more people would go the leagal route, Nintendo is only shooting itself in the foot and creating more piracy by having these silly restrictions.

TheAdza

#57

TheAdza said:

As above. I think if region locking was to go away piracy rates would drop. If the ease of transferring games from one platform to another (eg DS to 3DS and Wii to Wii U) became an easy process instead of the makeshift system in place today, it would fall again. If you put restrictions on what people can do, for whatever reason, there will be people out there trying to break them. I'm not saying that piracy is a good thing, of course it's bad when people who have access and the money to buy games go ahead and obtain an illegal copy, but people who are willing to shell out money for games but can't due to region locking and untransferable content, what is the other option? We don't buy it, no money made. We grab a rom, no money made. It's such a shame though that hacking to relieve restrictions leads to piracy but they keep making more and more restrictions so in the end, I really wish it hurt the platform holders instead of the devs that make games for them, but it doesn't, and it sucks, but what can we do? Nothing.

HugoSmits

#58

HugoSmits said:

@theblackdragon that’s my point. My argument of prices was merely to show that it’s unlikely that every download equals a lost sale.

@RenegadeJools
The problem with the Nintendo statement is that they aren't actually supporting that with figures. A lot of those big publishers are screaming that 90% of their games are pirated,etc very few actually have the numbers to back this up.
In fact the link to the article you posted shows how Nintendo measured this, which I think is very crippled:

“In June 2009, Nintendo monitored 10 websites based overseas that allowed people to illicitly download game software, and found that software had been pirated a total 238 million times.

Multiplied by the average unit price for software, the figure translates into 1 trillion yen ($10.7 billion) in lost sales.”
So basically they assumed that if piracy wouldn’t exist they made 238 extra sales. This is just a fundamentally wrong way of doing things.
You (and the article) mainly talk about Europe. But nobody seems to care to figure out how many sales have actually been lost due to pricing instead of piracy.

McHaggis

#59

McHaggis said:

@LZBirdboi, you said
"By your logic Hugo, is it okay for me to steal expensive clothes because I can't afford them otherwise?"

That is clearly a poor analogy because, if you steal a real product from a bricks and mortar shop, that's something the shop has bought from a manufacturer with the intention of selling on to consumers for a profit. So, that's theft in a real sense, because that shop will have to pay to replace that sweater. Piracy doesn't cause the same damage... when you download a game off the internet, it doesn't require that another copy of the game be produced to replace it.

Compare this with the actual theft of 7,000 Wii U units that happened recently. Those consoles in total were worth around $2.28m, and it will cost somebody somewhere in that region to replace them. It also means those 7,000 Wii U consoles were no longer available for consumers to buy. Compare that with the illegal download of 7,000 copies of Mutant Mudds―those copies do not have to be replaced and 7,000 people aren't going to be disappointed that they couldn't purchase a copy.

@HugoSmits is absolutely correct; 1 illegal download is not equal to 1 lost sale. I do think that illegal downloads are equal to some lost sales, but the logical part of my brain tells me that it can't surely be anywhere near what game companies would have you believe. With regards to the whole region and unavailable games thing, I think there's a point here, too. If people can't access games in their region legally, why does anyone really care if they access them illegally? There's definitely no lost sale there, right? The way I see it, as long as there's enough people in the world putting food on the developer's table, then why not let some less privileged people have the same enjoyment without the burden of the expensive price tag? With digital products, that's the only time it's a viable option. If somebody, somewhere in the world without the means could get free energy because I'm paying for my house to be heated, that would just be fantastic.

Kilroy

#60

Kilroy said:

Something a number of us have touched on, but I'm not sure if Jools commented on it: Marketing. As I said before, I had no idea the Dementium games existed until a horror -loving friend told me about them and he only bought D1 out of pure curiosity after seeing it on the shelf at GameStop.

I'm suspicious that a lack of advertising played a large role in influencing sales numbers. Heck, if it wasn't for my gaming nerdiness and thus, looking up gaming sites, there'd be a ton of great games I wouldn't know existed, especially download-only games.

HugoSmits

#61

HugoSmits said:

@LZBirdboi

I think you misunderstand me. I do not condone piracy in anyway. I honestly believe that piracy is theft.

That said; I don’t believe piracy is costing the industry as much as Jools or the articles are proclaiming. I also don’t believe piracy is the problem, but rather the effect or symptom of the real problem.

If tomorrow all games would costs 400 dollars (which is the equivalent of the price in poor European countries) how many can be expect to sell? If piracy would completely disappear tomorrow, how much more do you expect to sell at those prices?

And yes, it’s a luxury product. You do not need to game, but you obviously love to game. So would you be tempted to get games through different channels (piracy) or would you completely quit your hobby?

Most people (although again, I do not condone) would be tempted to pirate!

Drawdler

#62

Drawdler said:

I'm glad that they decided to stand up for themselves, because I'm tired of hearing people going "but you said you were going to abandon Nintendo platforms!". Hearing him say that once was far less annoying. And I also gotta thank him for the clarification. So if you will excuse me I am off to wait for Mutant Mudds 2. :)

Windy

#63

Windy said:

Stealing is Stealing you should know better and if you don't, there is truly something wrong with you. It killed the Dreamcast Absolutely and sega has never been the same company. If your Rich and you steal, be a Better man and don't do it! If your poor and steal, be a better man and don't do it! It's a plain and simple formula to just be a better man or Woman

Kilroy

#64

Kilroy said:

@Windy As someone else already explained, piracy did not kill the Dreamcast; company in-fighting, fan displacement and Sony killed the system.

HugoSmits

#65

HugoSmits said:

@Windy

Sega killed the Dreamcast. They messed up so badly with the Saturn that no toystore put Dreamcast on the shelve. You could only but it in specific gamestores which really limited the sale potential.

Luffymcduck

#66

Luffymcduck said:

@Geonjaha
Still, if these pirates want to download let´s say 10 games, and when they no longer can´t download them they´d propably buy at least 1 of them if they really wanted to play them.

trevelyn412

#67

trevelyn412 said:

Mutant Mudds had poor programming, good music and graphics. eShop games are just too pricey relative to the smartphone market. You can get the same satisfaction with usually better graphics from a smartphone game. Whining about piracy and not making money is what politicians do, not programmers who love to code and have fun making games. boohoo if you don't make money, there's a deeper - more meaningful return on work developed from someone with the right passion. If Nintendo themselves want to blame piracy, then they should drop their prices for non-transferable digitally downloaded games from the ridiculous $39.99USD to < $10.00 and they'll see a difference. I woundn't buy another Renegade Kidd game if my life depended on it.

rayword45

#68

rayword45 said:

"If Nintendo themselves want to blame piracy, then they should drop their prices for non-transferable digitally downloaded games from the ridiculous $39.99USD to < $10.00 and they'll see a difference"

With all due respect, do you have no sense of value of money? No company would EVER drop games that sell well from $40 to less then $10. That would be a complete bad move due to both profit loss and actual devaluation.

Windy

#69

Windy said:

@trevelyn412 Mutant Mudds poor programming? I would believe this better had you said Planet Crashers. Mutant Mudds generally is loved by 80% plus from people who downloaded and played it. it was an Eshop hit and has a good price point. Renegade kid isn't perfect just like any other company, Planet Crashers proves that but overpricing is something I dont think they are guilty of. They could lower the price on Planet Crashers so that people who get it wouldnt feel as ripped off. There is some far worse things going on in the Eshop. Such as Zenonia at 7.99 which sells for .99 cents on Android and Apple. I seriously think at some point we gamers should boycott the Eshop because of things like Zenonia and Pilot Wings which is in the Eshop for 39.99 and sells for 17.99 new at quite a few online outlets on cartridge. There is no excuse for the latter 2 other than plain and simple GREED.

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