Pirating games has become way easier in the past years. With games being distributed digitally through a download, games can also be cracked and put up for download. With services like Steam you can sometimes even use the multiplayer functions of the pirated games! It seems simple to say that pirating is bad, but the subject is a way more complex than you would first think. There are a lot more factors playing a role than just the rules. It is important to look at all these factors before forming an opinion.
To start, here are some reasons why piracy is bad and shouldn’t happen: Boldly said, pirating is a form of stealing and thus illegal. When people pirate a game, they get access to its content without paying. The creators of the games have spent weeks upon weeks making it all happen. They have spent tonnes of money to make the game as good and enjoyable as it is. You shouldn’t thank them by stealing their work.
If a game is pirated, it often means that less profit is made on the game and the creators will, directly and indirectly, notice the decrease in revenue. The consequence could lead to game companies making less expensive games, which are often less good games. In some cases, the profit will be so small that the company does not even have the resources required for a new game anymore. The negative effect also implies to existing games. Updates will be bad, rushed or not even released at all.
30-35% of all PC gamers pirate games, but the volume of games they pirate is astronomically higher than expected. (source: pcgamer.com)
Now, let’s have a look on the other side of the subject. There are good reasons for piracy and there are advantages too.
One of the reasons to pirate a game is poverty. If you don’t have money, you can’t buy a game. It is known that gaming can relieve tension, stress, make you feel better and take you away from your everyday life and issues. Besides the fun and the experience of a good story in a game, this is one of the major reasons that people play games. When you are poor, your life is hard. You could very well use a moment to relax with the help of a game.
Another reason as to why pirating is quite a sensible thing to do, is the following: A lot of people, who don’t have piles of money to spend, don’t dare to buy a game if they aren’t sure it is worth their money. Therefore, those people will first try to get the game for free to see if they like it enough and if their device can run it well enough. A lot of these people will either stop playing the game if they don’t like it, or after all buy the game to support its creators.
An indirect advantage to pirating gamers is that, if games get pirated, they do get played. This means that, if the player likes the game, he does participate in making the game more popular. This makes more people buy the game. In this way, you can still speak of revenue, even if the one player didn’t pay for it. It can be seen as form of free advertisement.
Now that we know about the complexity of piracy, we can form our statement on it. There are many good reasons and excuses to pirate games, of which a few examples are stated above. However, it is still something that you shouldn’t do. Therefore I would say that pirating is you’re your own individual choice. You should consider yourself if your reasons to pirating weigh up against the consequences it has for the world, also considering what the possible consequences are and knowing that you are responsible for them.
Author: Rick van de Sande – fReaders