The Top 10 Pirated PC Games of 2008: Spore Leads

EA Maxis' Spore was by far the most pirated PC game in 2008, according to a list compiled by Torrent-tracking blog TorrentFreak. The title, surrounded by controversy over its anti-piracy DRM, was illegally downloaded over 1.7 million times.

Electronic Arts took a beating in capturing four of the top five slots, with EA Maxis' The Sims 2 taking the not-so-coveted second place by reaching over 1.1 million downloads. The EA-published Crysis and Command & Conquer 3 came in at fourth and fifth, respectively.

Ubisoft's PC port of Assassin's Creed grabbed a reluctant third place with over a million downloads. The game was leaked to torrent networks over six weeks ahead of its retail release in April. Ubisoft later sued disc replicator Optical Experts Manufacturing (OEM) for $10 million in damages, believing that an OEM employee was responsible for the leak.

The rest of the list follows:

  1. Spore / 1,700,000 / Sept. 2008
  2. The Sims 2 / 1,150,000 / Sept. 2004
  3. Assassins Creed / 1,070,000 / Nov. 2007
  4. Crysis / 940,000 / Nov. 2007
  5. Command & Conquer 3 / 860,000 / Mar. 2007
  6. Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare / 830,000 / Nov. 2007
  7. Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas / 740,000 / Jun. 2005
  8. Fallout 3 / 645,000 / Oct. 2008
  9. Far Cry 2 / 585,000 / Oct. 2008
  10. Pro Evolution Soccer 2009 / 470,000 / Oct. 2008
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From The Chatty
  • reply
    December 9, 2008 11:56 AM

    Interesting. I thought it was policy to not even admit such things existed, even if was news.

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      December 9, 2008 12:10 PM

      that would be an odd policy. the whole hoopla around piracy is that everyone knows and admits it exists, and debates how best to deal with it.

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        December 9, 2008 12:13 PM

        I guess he means that you usually can expect the banhammer if you post a link to something like or similar, where you get access to these downloads.

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          December 9, 2008 12:44 PM

          I do remember reading in the shacknew policy that "we live in a world where this sort of this doesn't exist" so doesn't that mean these articles shouldn't be posted here?

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            December 9, 2008 1:10 PM

            I think that rule either vanished or simply stopped being enforced.

            It used to be the source of a great number of stupid bans, but these days, it seems like you can pretty much say whatever as long as you don't like to torrent sites or the like.

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              December 9, 2008 2:23 PM

              I got a post banned 2 days ago for simply saying a word that rhymes with smack. Another use of the word is for a drug.

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                December 9, 2008 2:23 PM

                keep in mind i didn't say Where or how to do it i just said the word.

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                  December 9, 2008 2:45 PM

                  hence the subjective thing. and the context of your statement, and mood of all the posts.

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                    December 12, 2008 6:22 AM

                    Which brings us back to the perfect simplicity of pretending to live in a world where this doesn't exist. Frankly, as much as I would enjoy a lively debate over which games are being played by more people regardless of how they were acquired I wish Shacknews would stick to its guns and stop following these "stories" that reek of corporate promotion at the expense of reactionary journalism. Oh NOOOO! PC gaming is dead. Here is another list of games to remind you what you should buy before Xmas if you want to be cool like all the swashbukling skallywaggers! ARG!

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            December 9, 2008 1:22 PM

            i think there's a difference between posting about how to download, where to download, or how to troubleshoot said downloads and talking about it in a news/industry way. if this article detailed where all the downloads came from and how to get them yourself, that would probably be bad. and hilarious.

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              December 9, 2008 1:42 PM

              a while back when commenting on a piracy thread I got a ban for simply mentioning in my i had pirated a game when i was younger

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                December 9, 2008 2:16 PM

                when on video game forums where talking about piracy (and pirating games) is a bannable offense, it's safe to say you shouldn't go out and talk about pirating games. since that's... bannable.

                all moderation is subjective, as well.

                cover your ass, you won't get banned!

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      December 9, 2008 12:12 PM

      it certainly isn't the policy of the publishing companies since they want every reason to cry to government law-makers and demand more draconian anti-piracy policies

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      December 9, 2008 3:11 PM
      "we live in an imaginary world where warez do not exist. Care to join us?"