Indie Developer Fights Pirates with Piracy
No Time To Explain is the first game by two man indie developer tiny Build Games. It's a fun and very stylish platformer in it's own right, available for $10 from the tiny Build website. Articles about the game on RockPaperShotgun, Destructoid, and other prominent PC sites helped it develop substantial hype and raise more than $26,000 via Kickstarter to fund development.
Alex Nichiporchik and Tom Brien of tiny Build knew, as all sensible PC gamemakers do, that people were going to pirate their game with BitTorrent. Rather than waste their time combating the problem with elaborate DLC that would only frustrate their paying customers, they decided to get creative and use their talents to create a little present for the BitTorrent community.
A pirated version of the game emerged on The Pirate Bay bittorrent tracker shortly after the game's official release, as one does with nearly any new release. Users who downloaded it, however, were surprised to find that the entire game had suddenly acquired a pirate theme not present in any of the trailers. Nearly every character is wearing a pirate hat, for example. It turns out tiny Build themselves made this version of the game and uploaded it to The Pirate Bay to make a joke and encourage people to buy the less-buggy real version of the game, according to an interview on TorrentFreak.
Both versions of the game are enjoyable, so whether you can afford the $10 to download it or not, it is definitely still worth checking out. Besides, we should all be supporting game developers who embrace the realities of digital piracy and find interesting ways to deal with it, rather than trying to shut it out with restrictive DLC that ultimately doesn't work.