Why People Pirate Video Games

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Sure, we've all heard most of these excuses before, but this article on why people pirate video games is actually pretty interesting.

Just because someone used to pirate doesn’t mean they still do. A very common theme I saw in a lot of stories was the way people pirated when they were younger and broke, but as they got older and wiser, replaced torrents with Steam sales.
 

Motley

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The younger generation doesn't have any respect for anything.

Just look at how they act online. They don't respect their elders, they don't respect their parents, they don't respect each other. Its all ME ME ME.

And they certainly don't respect the video game industry. They pirate games, then come on forums like this, and complain how awefull it is.

God help us all.
 

eldertru

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Ever since Steam became available, I haven't pirated anything since. I enjoy the ability to buy a game on a platform that I can easily download and take my library with me from device to device.
 

Azphira

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Who needs an article, it can be summed up in two words, no morality.
 

Yakk

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The younger generation doesn't have any respect for anything.

Just look at how they act online. They don't respect their elders, they don't respect their parents, they don't respect each other. Its all ME ME ME.

And they certainly don't respect the video game industry. They pirate games, then come on forums like this, and complain how awefull it is.

God help us all.

Hehehe... True, true... Each generation eventually grows up and learns. They probably won't listen to advice, but... reality will eventually hammer in life's lessons. Weather they learn the easy or hard way will be up to them. ;)
 

NickJames

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I can agree with that, I was a huge pirate when I was younger and didn't pay for a thing. But once I got a job I just bought everything on steam because it was convenient..
 

Kardonxt

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"the way people pirated when they were younger and broke, but as they got older and wiser, replaced torrents with Steam sales"

This is pretty much me exactly. I used to pirate every single game to the point were my friends took pictures and made a big deal out of me buying a game at checkout. Now that I'm older I have a steam backlog of 250ish games. Some of which are even games I pirated years ago because I liked them so much.

Now that I have some money buying a few launch titles a year isn't a big deal and everything else can wait for steam sales.
 

DPI

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this thread should be good for a few dozen pages of dumb.

self entitled "cuz greedy publishers and their pre-orders and plus so many games launch broken anyway & that's what I pirate" in 3....2....
 

mzs_biteme

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When did gaming become a "right"?!?!?! The first few "excuses" were basically; "Hey, we ain't got no money but we DESERVE to have these games"...

I'm like:
2604c8c350d537bb08322a3ea7a94a0fcf8606b56e39ba1f62301224aa417e84.jpg
 

TheOneKnownAsMe

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When I was young and couldn't afford a game, guess what I did? I didn't play that game. Plain and simple. I made do with the games that I did have, and I understood that everything has a price, and everything has a consequence, perceived or not. If I couldn't afford it, that was the end of the story.

What's up with this unfounded sense of entitlement?
 

kbrickley

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The "I can't afford to buy" crowd are scary ... where does that sort of argument end? ... I want to play games so I must steal them since I don't have enough money to buy them ... I want to drive so I must steal a car since I don't have enough money to buy one ... I want to have more money so I must steal it so I don't have to be poor :eek:

When I was young I had to pick and choose which games I could afford or which I would ask for as gifts ... or I had to rent ... or I had to do without ... the sociopathic socialistic egocentric mentality with some people is just terrifying
 

Ducman69

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The "I can't afford to buy" crowd are scary ... where does that sort of argument end?
Its complete and utter nonsense. No one HAS to play a video game, please, so if you can't afford it... great, don't buy it, and play a free video game online.

Far more reasonable are the "try before you buy" crowd, that download a game, and if they like it, then they purchase the legit version so that they can play online and get all the updates and support the developer.

Then there's the group that pirate because its free, and not only free but sometimes the pirated versions are more convenient allowing for offline play or back in the day not needing to put a CD in your laptop every time you want to fire it up as DRM.
 

kbrickley

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Its complete and utter nonsense. No one HAS to play a video game, please, so if you can't afford it... great, don't buy it, and play a free video game online.

Far more reasonable are the "try before you buy" crowd, that download a game, and if they like it, then they purchase the legit version so that they can play online and get all the updates and support the developer.

Then there's the group that pirate because its free, and not only free but sometimes the pirated versions are more convenient allowing for offline play or back in the day not needing to put a CD in your laptop every time you want to fire it up as DRM.

Even beyond that, since to play pirated games you must own a $300-500 console or a $500-1000 PC it rings especially hollow that they can't afford to buy a few games
 

Wierdo

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If the laws are draconian people lose respect for them and only the old fogies are left lining up to follow the rules and complaining about youngsters not doing the same. No surprise there, same old same old since beginning of time.

But then there's a convenient way to get back within the confines of those "horse and buggy" laws and society adjusts accordingly, more people fall in line.

So pro-consumer = draconian law is more acceptable to society beyond just the cane shakers. Everyone wins. Honey vs Vinegar and all that jazz. Crazy right?
 

DocSavage

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When did gaming become a "right"?!?!?! The first few "excuses" were basically; "Hey, we ain't got no money but we DESERVE to have these games"...

Yeah fuck poor people. They should go out and rob people if they can't get jobs and have nothing better to do.
 

McFry

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I too pirated when I was a kid, but not that much since I by the time I got into PC gaming I had part-time jobs etc to buy things. I think the only games I ever stole were doom and quake1. The simple truth is kids who have any money at all spend their money. If they are spending money then that means they are legally buying things. The difference is they are buying the things they cant steal, like tickets to the movie theater, a burger and fries, condoms for their girlfriend, etc. Video games, much like music, are different, because all it requires is the click of a button. Yeah they'd steal a car too if it was that easy, they'd never get caught and nobody would judge them for it.

Today my morality has caught up, so when something like BF4 comes out for $70+, I just give it 6 months to go on sale to get the exp packs I need. I could afford it at launch but I'm not willing to, but I'm also not a pirate so I just wait. If I were a kid again I'd definitely pirate it knowing the old me. It has nothing to do with self-entitlement, and everything to do with the fact that I just didnt feel bad for doing so, and I think thats understandable at that age and given the nature of piracy. I wouldnt steal a $70 blender from the grocery store, but I would stela a $70 game from the internet. It just feels different, and i dont fault people at that age for thinking like that.
 

kbrickley

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Yeah fuck poor people. They should go out and rob people if they can't get jobs and have nothing better to do.

There are other options ... when I was growing up we couldn't afford to buy every game or console but I had friends and some of them had games I was missing or other consoles ... they could come to my house and play or I could go to theirs ... when my kids were growing up in Asia they went to friends house or the pay by the hour game lounges when they wanted to play a game they didn't own ... stealing/piracy isn't the only option
 

Ducman69

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Yeah fuck poor people. They should go out and rob people if they can't get jobs and have nothing better to do.
1) Can't get jobs = clean toilets? Pick up trash? Do "Mexican" work? Pfft, no way, Jose! I got cundishuns or that's not gangsta, so gotta collect Obamabucks or steal. :rolleyes:
2) No one has a right to play video games, and there are soooooooooo many free to play video games available. Don't like any of them and really want that $60 game? Too bad. I want a blowjob from a super model, but I'm not entitled to one and if I want something close then I need to hit the gym and get a six pack and work for it.
 
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Lack of value. Especially with today's nickel and diming with dlc and addons. Many games are just not worth the money, I play for a few hours, find out I don't care for it and delete it. If it holds my interest for more than that, I go and buy it.
 

Tuxon86

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There are other options ... when I was growing up we couldn't afford to buy every game or console but I had friends and some of them had games I was missing or other consoles ... they could come to my house and play or I could go to theirs ... when my kids were growing up in Asia they went to friends house or the pay by the hour game lounges when they wanted to play a game they didn't own ... stealing/piracy isn't the only option

This, and today you can just wait a couple of months and buy the game either used or in the bargain bins at Walmart.
 

silk186

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I call BS on your moral high ground. When I was a kid and didn't have money I would rent, borrow, play demos and buy second hand. Now I pirate some and buy some depending on steam sales and how my finances are. When I finish school I will buy all my games on steam. It is so much easier. Changes in the market have result in a rise in piracy: imporovements in internet (high speed + uncapped) and limited options (DRM, always online, no demos). The steam refund policy will help with the lack of demos as I think some (not most) pirate to demo a game before buying it. I did buy my favorite games after "trying them out". I'm not saying I deserve it, I'm saying scew you morals high ground, go preach at a church.
 

OldandCrusty

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When I was young I got a job to pay for the things I wanted. If I couldn't afford something, I went without. Of course that concept is as out dated as my sense of morality.
 

NeghVar

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Lack of value. Especially with today's nickel and diming with dlc and addons. Many games are just not worth the money, I play for a few hours, find out I don't care for it and delete it. If it holds my interest for more than that, I go and buy it.

I have followed the same philosophy ever since I burned $50 on Doom 3. Played for a few hours, did not like it and have not touched it since. However, the share plan on Steam has come in quite handy.
 

Kueller

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When did gaming become a "right"?!?!?! The first few "excuses" were basically; "Hey, we ain't got no money but we DESERVE to have these games"...

I'm like:

I'd rather have broke people sitting inside playing games rather than wandering the streets breaking into cars and houses to steal the money to buy games.

Would it be better if they got jobs? Of course, but that's just not going to happen with a lot of these people.
 

silk186

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When I was young I got a job to pay for the things I wanted. If I couldn't afford something, I went without. Of course that concept is as out dated as my sense of morality.

Because downloading a game ....ummm... starving kids in ..... GOD kills a kitten.... oh right it doesn't hurt shit. If poor people can't affor the game it doesn't equal a lost sale. If I want free music I can turn on the radio. If I want free games i pirate and you get butt hurt. Hmm, I get a free game AND you get butt hurt... sounds like a good deal to me.
 

sfsuphysics

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Reading through those early "rationals" were just too painful, so forgive me if this was mentioned in the article.

Did no one say "Why would I pay for something I could get for free?"
 

kbrickley

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Because downloading a game ....ummm... starving kids in ..... GOD kills a kitten.... oh right it doesn't hurt shit. If poor people can't affor the game it doesn't equal a lost sale. If I want free music I can turn on the radio. If I want free games i pirate and you get butt hurt. Hmm, I get a free game AND you get butt hurt... sounds like a good deal to me.

Actually it is more nefarious than that ... game piracy works on the same principle as every other socialist principle (ain't nothing free in this world) ... someone else pays money for the games so that the developer can stay in business, and so that the entitled looters that don't want to pay for something can have it for free ... this model only works as long as there are a sufficient number of people paying for something to allow it to be made ... personally I couldn't care less about a person who pirates something but I do care when they expect it as their right at other peoples expense :cool:
 

silk186

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Reading through those early "rationals" were just too painful, so forgive me if this was mentioned in the article.

Did no one say "Why would I pay for something I could get for free?"

In addition since downloading = downloading and not theft most people don't expeirence a moral conflict. It's not like stealing a chocolate bar from a mom and pop corner shop. "No animals were harmed in the pirating of this game" Support that delevopers if you can afford to, enjoy the game for free if you can't.
 

nilepez

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The younger generation doesn't have any respect for anything.

Just look at how they act online. They don't respect their elders, they don't respect their parents, they don't respect each other. Its all ME ME ME.

And they certainly don't respect the video game industry. They pirate games, then come on forums like this, and complain how awefull it is.

God help us all.

Satire?
 

chockomonkey

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I can agree with that, I was a huge pirate when I was younger and didn't pay for a thing. But once I got a job I just bought everything on steam because it was convenient..

Same with me. You cross a point where time is more valuable than money. When that happens, steam is the clear winner with regards to ease of use.
 

Arcygenical

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Honestly the only reason I've pirated anything was to check for day 1 compatibility issues and driver problems. After that, I buy the game. Not worth all the piracy related crashes, patch issues etc. But I've saved myself a ton of headaches by realizing a title isn't day 1 ready for my system thanks to piracy.
 

nilepez

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In the early 90s I'd occasionally get a game from a pirate site...it took forever, so I was pretty selective.

I know i got WC1. I never bought it (AFAIK), but I did buy all the Special Ops disks after that.

I downloaded Links and loved it. Don't recall if I bought the game, but I know I bought a bunch of courses and then 2 updated versions (and some courses for those too). It's a shame that MS bought Access and killed franchise.

After that, shareware became a big thing in games, so there wasn't much point. These days, my gaming is more limited and I can pick up stuff on Steam long after it came out (and i still won't play 90% of that).
 

NeghVar

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Reading through those early "rationals" were just too painful, so forgive me if this was mentioned in the article.

Did no one say "Why would I pay for something I could get for free?"

Ageed, the feeling of entitlement because one simply does not wanting to pay for it because one knows they can acquire it for free. That is inexcusable. Pirating it out of protest over draconian DRM also falls in this catagory.

Thanks to DOSbox, I began replaying some of the old games I had. The first, what we consumers call, abandonware I downloaded was Return to Zork because 3 of the 11 diskettes had degraded to the point that the data was unreadable. Infocom was defunct and there was no place to purchase it. So I downloaded it from an abandoneware site. I did not feel that I was doing anything wrong because I bought it and still had all the original media.
 

OldandCrusty

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Because downloading a game ....ummm... starving kids in ..... GOD kills a kitten.... oh right it doesn't hurt shit. If poor people can't affor the game it doesn't equal a lost sale. If I want free music I can turn on the radio. If I want free games i pirate and you get butt hurt. Hmm, I get a free game AND you get butt hurt... sounds like a good deal to me.

But piracy does hurt gaming. If I didn't get paid for the work I did, I wouldn't work. Would you?

Don't tell me that it isn't the case, because as much as you argue that it isn't true, the fact is that piracy is stealing.
 

ToddW2

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I'm glad my son asks to go outside, and has no interest in having a 250+ steam library, and no life!!
 

ToddW2

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I think in almost 2 years I may have hit 150 or 175 hrs in games... lol
 

OP20

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Same as a lot of people here. I used to pirate everything when i was in college with minimal income. Now everything is through steam.
 

silk186

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But piracy does hurt gaming. If I didn't get paid for the work I did, I wouldn't work. Would you?

Don't tell me that it isn't the case, because as much as you argue that it isn't true, the fact is that piracy is stealing.

This is only true IF the piracy results in a lots sale and this is not the argument people are making. If you can't afford games you don't get games. Meaning that they would not have bought the game. This argument can be brought into the used game market. When I was a kid a bought all of my console games second hand except for the first few marios and a few games at Christmas. Second hand games do not generate any revenue for developers. Second hand sales are not illigal but by your logic they are immoral.
 

tetris42

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Piracy is practically essential for old games that aren't being sold anymore. There's plenty of abandonware games that no one would be able to even play now if it wasn't for crack groups taking care of it in the past. Also is there really a moral high ground to be taken on old games where the only copy you can get on Ebay for hundreds of dollars v. downloading some ROM? Either way the developers get $0.
 
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