Quantcast

Piracy Figures

Rasczak

Distinguished Member
Some interesting figures have been posted on Digital Spy:

'Crysis 2', 'Gears of War 3' top 2011 most pirated games list - Gaming News - Digital Spy

The key extract:

PC [pirated] downloads:

1. Crysis 2 (3,920,000)
2. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (3,650,000)
3. Battlefield 3 (3,510,000)
4. FIFA 12 (3,390,000)
5. Portal 2 (3,240,000)

...

Xbox 360 [pirated] downloads:

1. Gears of War 3 (890,000)
2. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (830,000)
3. Battlefield 3 (760,000)
4. Forza Motorsport 4 (720,000)
5. Kinect Sports: Season Two (690,000)

...other platforms such as the PS3 were excluded due to considerably low download numbers.
:eek: Some fairly shocking numbers there and makes you appreciate why the PC is so unpopular with developers. For example even though Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 sold significantly more on the Xbox (some articles are putting the PC sales as just 15% of the total), PC piracy was FOUR times higher than Xbox piracy. Interesting to note that PS3 piracy, presumably in no small part due to Blu-ray, has low levels of piracy.

Also interesting to note that Crysis 2 was the most pirated PC game - especially as it was so rubbish.
 

Razor

Distinguished Member
Interesting and surprising figures Raz. I wonder how many of those pc downloads resulted in actual purchases of that game? I guess this is one figure that will never come to light.
 

WildeKarde

Well-known Member
Well looking from my own perspective I've played none of the PC games. If the wee shady bloke comes in to the pub and handed me the five discs would I try the games, maybe/maybe not but probably no more than a demo of them. It's not something that would interest me (and to be honest I don't have the time for the games from steam sales never mind copies)

Speaking from experience of seeing the dodgy market traders locally they have 90/95% of them selling console games and very few of them would do PC games. We could say those who pirate PC games are able to source direct from the internet (hence the high numbers), but I'm thinking if you compared pirated copies from both downloads and buying at a market the numbers might be closer.
 

Hillskill

Moderator/Games Reviewer
I can't see the word "estimate" anywhere in that article despite the fact that can be the only way to ever get piracy numbers.
 

Rasczak

Distinguished Member
I wonder how many of those pc downloads resulted in actual purchases of that game?
I'm guessing for Crysis 2 none :D

Seriously though it is a good point and, as you say, probably there is a degree of 'try before you buy' going on for some titles. But for games like Modern Warfare 3 is that really going to be the case? I mean we all know exactly what to expect from such a game after two previous, near identical instalments. And, having just completed the SP game myself, it is a highly polished but very short affair. I can't imagine too many people download it, try it for a bit and then buy. I think I completed the game in a day and half at the most.

I can't see the word "estimate" anywhere in that article despite the fact that can be the only way to ever get piracy numbers.
You are probably right - I don't really know how torrents work - but the article's data is drawn from a torrent site so wouldn't they have an accurate number of actual downloads? Or doesn't it work like that?
 

jjgreenwood

Well-known Member
interesting most of them are from the EA stable
 

Hillskill

Moderator/Games Reviewer
Torrent indexes aren't in the habit of giving out details to the companies that literally want them dead and gone. I don't dispute Piracy is an obvious problem but I honestly think Steam has done PC gaming the biggest favour.......infact I would go as far as say it has saved PC gaming. Choice, value (when considering the sales) and reliability. Its a business model that no doubt MS and Sony will be looking to ape once their next gen consoles arrive.
The real juicy piracy figures will come out of eastern europe and the far east and those cats sure as hell won't be volunteering an info. Its impossible to gauge how good or bad the problem is. The video game industry now makes more cash then the movie biz and those guys have to pay their leading stars 20million+ a film. Activision sure as hell didn't pay Soap that kind of cash! I want gaming to thrive and from what I can see it is. No doubt the same site will be reporting record sales next week.
 
Last edited:

Hillskill

Moderator/Games Reviewer
interesting most of them are from the EA stable
great spot! lets put it this way: Joe public sees all the pirates have gone bat crazy for Crysis 2 then he thinks "hmm, guess that game must be good. I'll buy it!". No such thing as negative press.
 

=adrian=

Member
As you can check yourself for fun, I'm sure there are more 'generic' numbers available for the chosen ones and more serious tools out there to do it.

You Have Downloaded - We show what you downloaded

Estimated statistics

Users in database: 55,072,000
Torrents: 123,100
Files: 2,113,000
Files size: (115.15 TB)

Top 5 themes
1. Music
2. Movies
3. TV-shows
4. Games
5. Applications

Top 5 regions
1. China
2. United States
3. Spain
4. United Kingdom
5. Taiwan
 
Last edited:
In my eyes a few simple steps would go a long way to help cut piracy.

1) Provide a demo for every game, then we can see whether it is worth purchasing or not. Not everyone wants to spend £30 on something they play for 30 mins and either don't like or find out it doesn't work.

2) Similar to the above but provide a system checker with every game to see if a) the game can run and b) run well enough.

3) Have some form of industry standards in place that a game has to be fit for purpose by external testing before release and not 3 months after when a dozen patches have been supplied.

4) Provide cheaper prices for downloads, surely the cost of servers is cheaper than producing a cd, manual, case and then shipping it to retailer. Most cases physical copies are cheaper than downloads.

You will never stop it completely as some people want everything in life for nothing and that stretches out far more than just gaming.

I think with all piracy though a lot who do it don't really see it as much of a crime or any at all. They would likely never walk into a shop and steal as they know it's wrong but then don't think twice about downloading a song, film or game.

I know good people who illegal download at times when they want a quick song, these would never steal in real life but they just don't grasp what they are doing is really stealing.
 
Last edited:

Rasczak

Distinguished Member
I don't dispute Piracy is an obvious problem but I honestly think Steam has done PC gaming the biggest favour.......infact I would go as far as say it has saved PC gaming. Choice, value (when considering the sales) and reliability. Its a business model that no doubt MS and Sony will be looking to ape once their next gen consoles arrive.
I agree that Steam has brought many positives to PC gaming but it doesn't seem to have stopped piracy - you'll note that Portal 2, a Steam exclusive, is also in the top 5 pirated PC games.

As for MS copying Steam I fully agree. Infact I wrote a blog - when will GFWL get Steamed? - sometime ago :)
 

=adrian=

Member
IMO it does not work the same. If you steal something from a shop, it means you take it away and the rightful owner is missing that item.

If you download something illegally you are not taking anything away, you just copy it, so you and the rightful owner got a copy each.

That does not mean, that the piracy is a good thing. Just that the real life examples, do not (or should not) work the same way.
 
IMO it does not work the same. If you steal something from a shop, it means you take it away and the rightful owner is missing that item.

If you download something illegally you are not taking anything away, you just copy it, so you and the rightful owner got a copy each.

That does not mean, that the piracy is a good thing. Just that the real life examples, do not (or should not) work the same way.
Doesn't work like that though does it? The outcome is the same.

Steal BF3 from a shop DICE/EA lose out on that sale.
Illegal download online DICE/EA lose out on that sale.

End of the day that person is still using the product without paying whether its copied or stolen and either way the people who created it see nothing of it.
 

cabanatuan

Banned
Some interesting figures have been posted on Digital Spy:

'Crysis 2', 'Gears of War 3' top 2011 most pirated games list - Gaming News - Digital Spy

The key extract:


:eek: Some fairly shocking numbers there and makes you appreciate why the PC is so unpopular with developers. For example even though Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 sold significantly more on the Xbox (some articles are putting the PC sales as just 15% of the total), PC piracy was FOUR times higher than Xbox piracy. Interesting to note that PS3 piracy, presumably in no small part due to Blu-ray, has low levels of piracy.

Also interesting to note that Crysis 2 was the most pirated PC game - especially as it was so rubbish.

i dont believe those figures mate because back in china, phillippines etc, piracy is rampant on the consoles more then on pc as not manyc an afford a £600 gaming pc whilst a £200 console is more affordable. Seriously i dont believe those stats. where are they based from?
 

cabanatuan

Banned
Doesn't work like that though does it? The outcome is the same.

Steal BF3 from a shop DICE/EA lose out on that sale.
Illegal download online DICE/EA lose out on that sale.
Try a legit demo of the game and do not buy = DICE/EA lose out on that sale.

End of the day that person is still using the product without paying whether its copied or stolen and either way the people who created it see nothing of it.
I added the one in bold for you as the prime reason why devs dont do demos anymore
 

Goooner

Distinguished Member
Sega Mega Dave said:
Doesn't work like that though does it? The outcome is the same.

Steal BF3 from a shop DICE/EA lose out on that sale.
Illegal download online DICE/EA lose out on that sale.

End of the day that person is still using the product without paying whether its copied or stolen and either way the people who created it see nothing of it.
By the same token, borrow it off a mate DICE/EA have lost a sale, or have they? Would you have bought it if your mate hadn't lent it to you? Not necessarily.

Also, buy it second hand, DICE/EA lose a sale, but again, have they? Would I have bought it for full price? Maybe not.

Piracy obviously exists, but I'm very sceptical of these numbers seemingly plucked out of the air by publishers/developers.

Put out a decent game and people will buy it, put out an average game, full of bugs, with no manual, which seems to be the norm now, where's the incentive for people to buy it?
 

cabanatuan

Banned
Goooner said:
By the same token, borrow it off a mate DICE/EA have lost a sale, or have they? Would you have bought it if your mate hadn't lent it to you? Not necessarily.

Also, buy it second hand, DICE/EA lose a sale, but again, have they? Would I have bought it for full price? Maybe not.

Piracy obviously exists, but I'm very sceptical of these numbers seemingly plucked out of the air by publishers/developers.

Put out a decent game and people will buy it, put out an average game, full of bugs, with no manual, which seems to be the norm now, where's the incentive for people to buy it?
Well said..borrowing
 

AJBek

Well-known Member
Borrowing games is pretty alien to me as a pc gamer, but the console boys do it all the time. My mate regularly takes his copy of mw3 and fifa to a mates and they play it on his ps3. This is technically a lost sale as they should both have bought a copy according to publishers, same as second hand games which publishers are doing their best to stamp out on the consoles with online passes etc. PC gaming has none of these issues. TBH I couldn't be bothered with piracy for pc games as my internet connection would take about 2 days to torrent a game and I only have limited bandwidth per month (steam is the same problem). I amn pretty happy about the cost of pc games anyway and am quite happy to pay for them, music on the other hand....
 

wolvers

Novice Member
Surely piracy on consoles is done mainly by disc copies, rather than downloads?

Also, JM is bang on. If you've ever been to the far east you'll know how rife console game piracy is there.
 

=adrian=

Member
To be perfectly honest, I think that the 'piracy problem' is not even half as big as all those massive companies want us to believe. Chasing the pirates is a big business in itself worth millions if not billions. And while doing it look what else they can acheive.

I'm not sure you are aware but we are on the verge of the biggest internet censorship ever. I think it just awaits the US Senate signature.

I'll try to dig out the source.
 

Dave2

Well-known Member
I think the pc stats are based on expected sale based on console sales if you catch what I'm trying to say.


So console sold 6 million but pc only sold 2 million so the pc version was illegally downloaded 3 million times.

What does scare me is what the stats tell me and that is pc gaming will move to things like onlive and this will spoil pc gaming as a whole.
 

heathen666

Well-known Member
Doesn't work like that though does it? The outcome is the same.

Steal BF3 from a shop DICE/EA lose out on that sale.
Illegal download online DICE/EA lose out on that sale.

End of the day that person is still using the product without paying whether its copied or stolen and either way the people who created it see nothing of it.
It's down to the level of risk. I can download (if i wanted to) a pirated game with a very, very small chance of being caught. Where if I walked into my local Tescos and stole the same game, there is a far higher chance of being caught. This just doesn't apply to software piracy, but also think about the next time you go over the speed limit, or jump a red light, but that's a whole separate debate entirely.

End of the day, back when trading tapes was popular, the record companies looked the other way because they were still getting money from everytime you purchased a blank tape. Why can't the same be done for broadband / cable connections and blank CDs, DVDs and Blu-ray disks??
 

Rasczak

Distinguished Member
i dont believe those figures mate because back in china, phillippines etc, piracy is rampant on the consoles more then on pc as not manyc an afford a £600 gaming pc whilst a £200 console is more affordable. Seriously i dont believe those stats. where are they based from?
The figures are based on downloads whereas my experience of the Far East is that pirated copies tend to distributed on disk. I acknowledge that, if disks are taken into account, console piracy might be far worse than illegal PC downloads. But I also think this is a smoke screen over the issue raised.

The publishers have to accept and budget for mass piracy in the Far East because anti-iracy measures cannot be adequately enforced. Whereas in the main Western economies (including Japan) disk based pirate sales, as well as console modding, can be more effectively attacked. This leaves those wishing to pirate to resort to the internet and we can see clearly from the figures that it is the PC that is haven to most.

It would inevitable to me that we will get to a stage, perhaps when PC gaming reaches a low ebb again when the new consoles emerge, where publishers decide not to release on PC. I just see how such mass piracy figures are sustainable in a retracting market.
 

Trending threads

Latest News

AVForums Podcast: 25th May 2020
  • By Phil Hinton
  • Published
Sky HDR launch rumoured for 27th of May
  • By Andy Bassett
  • Published
Sony 2020 8K LED and 48-inch OLED TV prices leaked
  • By Andy Bassett
  • Published
iFi launches iPhono3 Black Label phono stage
  • By Andy Bassett
  • Published
HBO Max to air 'Snyder Cut' of Justice League in 2021
  • By Andy Bassett
  • Published
Top Bottom