Nvidia VP: No Justification for PC Piracy

By Aaron Linde, May 08, 2008 4:00pm PDT Nvidia content relations VP Roy Taylor said that PC gaming has moved beyond reasonable justification for pirating PC games.

The executive suggested that it was unfair to steal content from the same developers who are struggling to keep the PC gaming market alive in a market dominated by surging console sales.

"I think that we've arrived at a point now where I don't know how anyone could ever possibly justify pirating a game," Taylor told Eurogamer. "I just don't know how anyone could consider that a cool thing to do - it's not. It sucks."

"One of the things that I find frustrating is that PC gamers tend to be very passionate, and they love the people that make great PC games. If you ask any PC gamer what they think of John Carmack, they'll say he's a hero. What do they think of Tim Sweeney? He's a hero. Ken Levine is a hero. And yet many of them, sadly, will go and steal from them. I just don't get that," he added.

Taylor believes that digital authentication and an increase of post-launch content downloads available to legitimate owners of PC gaming software would help combat software piracy. It was recently revealed that BioWare's Mass Effect and EA Maxis' Spore would make use of copy protection requiring online validation every ten days.

"I think that we're going to see more digital authentication, and we're going to see more of an approach that says that PC games aren't products—they're a service," Taylor said. "You're going to start out with a basic service, which is the game, and then increase the value of that service [through DLC]. That's the direction it's going to go, because the pirates are just killing the developers."

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46 Threads* | 171 Comments*

  • Again, all this math is not hard. You will always have preteen scriptkiddies who steal games they don't even care to play, just to build a collection to distro.

    Then you have people like me, who hate nothing more than purchasing a game and finding out it's utter shite. A game I'm on the fence about buying I may try out to see if I like it. If I do, I buy it. Happened for NWN2 and I bought it, happened for several console ports that I detest, and I simply deleted them.

    If a game has a demo... a real playable demo... then I would never bother with a torrent, and that happens a lot too.

  • Because of piracy, nVidia has been able ride the high wave of overpriced "enthusiast hardware" for years now. The same goes for other manufacturers in this niche consumer space; Asus, Gigabyte, OCZ etc. who will excruciatingly find themselves in the same predicament as nvidia. Asus is pushing out motherboards that go over €300 and even it's mid-range P45 products yield in €200. Shit like this won't save PC gaming.

    08 still has some great AAA+ titles in store for us, and I for one will be updating my 8800 GTX to feed my LP3065. If 09 sees the end of dumbed down corssplatform games and half-arsed PC ports, I'd say it'll be a blessing. DoW 2 and Clear Sky, and perhaps ArmA2(?) (save the MMO scene) will probably be the last great exclusives for our platform. PC gaming as we nostalgics like to reminisce it is gone, and will never come back. Blockbusters will always cater the lowest common denominator, and the core audience will find themselves sufficed with their 360's and PS3's and whatever will follow. Altho I do find my self enjoying CoD4 online on weekly basis, I can live without it. And I'm not planning to get a console, at least for now.

    I'm sure that smaller devs like Stardock will still keep crafting their games for the niche market, and cover the development cost with the sails figures those titles can cut. But they certainly won't require a 1K SP monsterchips or what ever it is nVidia has in store for us next. Unless the future MMOG's can lure the current WoW gen to get higher-end hardware (a bit of a stretch) the big green may soon find it self as a 3rd party contractor for next gen consoles, and what ever integrated solutions the future desktop market will hold. High-end graphics in terms of what we have today may very well be gone... but I can still take a spin on BattleZone, BGII or HoI and enjoy my life without pay-per-use DLC and what ever crap the future may hold...


  • we're going to see more of an approach that says that PC games aren't products—they're a service

    And that is the entire problem with PC gaming in it's current state (and to a lesser extent consoles but it is coming there soon), games bought at a ridiculous retail price (for entertainment standards) should not ever be sold as a service. This includes any game where the creators do not intend to update it's content on any real reasonable schedule; and by that I mean like monthly.

    The entire service model has zero consumer interest in mind and, quite frankly, is driven by greed.

    Consumers know this, they aren't stupid. As much as this publishers wished they were, their not.

    Consumers go to the store and do the math in their heads, they can pay 60 dollars for a game that will last them 15 hours but first they'll have to plead and beg the publisher to not only allow them to install it on a computer but they also have to conform to retarded limitations set forth by the publisher; and it's getting worse, not better, thanks to some totally shortsighted greedy fucking people who want to see gamers pay more, more often, for less content, and totally control the consumer like a puppet in the process.

    OR they could buy 4 movies, 6 cds, 2-3 board games, countless books, and limitless other physical products that not only allow them the freedom to do what they want with it (within reason) but can be traded, sold, or otherwise redeemed for some return on investment; even if that return is simply the product can still be used in 10 years down the road when such and such a company is out of business or is choosing not to support it anymore.

    One day, when you can turn on a TV like device and choose a game out of 50-100 games, on demand, where the content is constantly changing, then you can you sell me a service - at a monthly rate. Until then, wake up to reality, people will pay good money for good products if you give them the ability to use them on their own terms (again, within reason); but if you absolutely must insist on a service like structure the price has got to go down.

  • Piracy doesn't require justification. Piracy doesn't have justifications beyond the fact that IT IS NOT the potential market it's cracked up to be.

    Only about 2% of newly released games generate enough hype for some people to actually go buy them instead of waiting a few more days for a crack/release. We're talking major releases that won't flop either way, and even then you have to consider exactly what percentage of pirates has the means/need enough to buy retail. Personally I trust no statistic or figure bandied about every few months regarding the millions upon millions of dollars of losses, for I've yet to see a number compiled with usage statistics kindly borrowed from trackers and the like.

    Piracy can be blamed for a variety of reasons you cannot possibly expect to squeeze money out of without some dedication. You have a probably significant portion of the population pirating games just because it's easy and convenient, but in truth you don't know how many, or how often they do it. How much they actually liked the game, if they even got 10 mins into it. And then you have people who sees them as demos (a good torrent of the full game will download faster and with less traffic corruption than a 1.5gig demo sent through ftp). Then you have people who don't actually have means (the cheap, the reasonably poor, the ones living in unfair exchange rate countries, the ones with oppresive custom taxes or regulations, or whatever combination you can think of), those who can't even buy them due to a lack of retail stores in their area/province/country. Those who doubt about performance, those who actually buy the ones they like, those who are salvaging discs scratched beyond repair, those looking for discontinued products.. the list goes on.

    I admit the potential majority just does it because is fun, convenient and punishment-free, but how many do it? How much? Piracy is this big fuzzy cloud of uncertainty everyone seems eager to describe as a number ranging in the billions of lost revenue. The complexity and anonymity of this cloud makes every quote with an agenda as inconsequential as any number you come up with right now.