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Game Developer Promotes Game on Torrent Sites


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trials2.jpgLast summer the gaming company RedLynx decided to market its new game Trials 2 on various BitTorrent sites. Instead of worrying that the game might end up being pirated, the company decided to upload the bike game themselves as a promotional tool.

“Piracy is here, so how can we take advantage of that? What we did actually, on day one, we put that game immediately on all the torrent networks ourselves,” RedLynx CEO Tero Virtala, told a panel discussion at the Develop game conference.

The company didn’t upload the full game, but a slightly altered version which excluded the leaderboards that are required to play against other users on the Internet, hoping that it would convert some ‘pirates’ into paying customers.

“That game relies really heavily on the server side – the leaderboards are the soul of the game,” Virtala said. “I don’t know if it’s helped, I’d assume so because even though the version that we put on the torrent networks wasn’t the full version, it’s the version of the game without the actual soul, without the leaderboards to play against other players,” Virtala said.

Unfortunately the company has no way of knowing whether the free marketing on torrent sites has paid off. Thus far RedLynx has sold almost 150,000 copies of the game, but unlike the CEO claims, it is also available on torrent sites in a version where the leaderboard functionality is hacked.

It is good to see that companies are recognizing that giving away games on torrent sites can actually help to market their products. Making demo versions of a game available to the public is not necessarily a novelty, but uploading these onto torrent sites is an opportunity that only a few have taken advantage of.

Article from: TorrentFreak, check out our new blog at FreakBits.

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nsaneinthemembrane

very interesting thread.

Nice idea, but their logic was blatantly flawed. Did they seriously expect the file sharing community, full of hackers and highly techno-literate individuals, to actually go out and buy the full version after downloading the promo. For most hackers, its far more enjoyable hacking a game than it is actualy playing it. And i wasnt at all suprised to read how it backfired. Sure, some -maybe lots of people, went out and brought the game after downloading the promo (as a sign of appreciation to the game makers), but whats that compared to the amount of people who instead waited for the hacked version to become downloadable. Maybe it was a good idea after all though, seeing as the game (if it IS really any good) would have almost certainly ended up on a torrent site eventually even without their promo torrent idea.....hmmm its hard to measure the implications of the for and against. Its like a lose-lose for the game developers. maybe a temporary win (publicity - both for the game and the developers), but eventual loss (game gets hacked and downloaded fully), as opposed to eventual loss anyway....yea i suppose in that sense it wasnt such a bad idea.

Itll be interesting to see if any other game developers experiment with this.

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@nsaneinthemembrane:

I think hackers / crackers won't reverse engineer this one.

Like the article said, there is already a leaked version.

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