Almost all PC gamers are sick of heavy-handed copy protection schemes, and they don’t work to prevent piracy in any case. One PC game developer is finally telling it like it is.

One of the popular reasons given for sometimes-sluggish game sales on the PC is piracy. If people can get the game for free, why would they pay for it? Go to any popular torrent site and it will likely have many more games than your local gaming store. The situation led the community manager for Infinity Ward to recently complain about the number of people playing Call of Duty 4 online versus the number of copies the game has sold for the PC. Brad Wardell, CEO of Stardock, has a much different point of view: the pirates don’t matter.

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Personally, there’s more to the story in my opinion. Game developers are alienating their users, but the only way the users can really strike back without ruining their own enjoyment is going to affect the retail channel. I was not enamored with digital distribution- especially since they’re charging the same price with a negligible cost for their distribution channels. But then I began to see that I don’t need to put the DVD in the drive- without having to hack my legitimately purchased game! Now I only buy digital, and have decided not to buy a few new releases because they don’t have a digital option. Get rid of the copy protection, or the B&M stores will start to suffer…

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