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Old 25 October 2014, 17:18   #23
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Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Leeds, U.K.
Posts: 38
Originally Posted by edd_jedi View Post
The market traders that were charging 1 per disk, they must have been getting the games from somewhere and making a profit on them, were they paying the cracking teams to crack games?
No, in the cases where cracks were used they were probably taking them from someone on the scene for nothing and selling them so the cracking groups didn't get a cut of those profits.

Originally Posted by edd_jedi View Post
Was there a financial reward for the first team to crack a new commercial game?
Nope, see above. The only reason to get a first release was the prestige amongst your peers and that, along with the technical challenge and in some cases getting free games, tends to be the reason for cracking games even as far back as the Apple II days for most people taking part. i'm not trying to paint the cracking scene as whiter than white because almost everybody involved knew that they were doing something illegal, but selling pirated games is a far more morally questionable wrong.

Originally Posted by edd_jedi View Post
I'm sure the teams cracking games must have realised they were basically killing the games companies, and I can imagine for developers it must have been disheartening to spend all that time making a game only for it to be cracked.
Some of the crackers worked for the games companies, the best protection programmers tended to be (not always) lapsed pirates because pulling apart protection schemes was a good way to learn about writing your own.

And i can't remember a single case of a company being demonstrably killed by cracking; that's usually done by shifts in the market, the next generation of systems moving the goalposts and increasing development overheads or in a few cases just sheer bone-headed stupidity at management level.

The "piracy is killing" argument gets trotted out a lot, but it falls apart when you consider how the industry went from the Amiga with reasonably solid on-disk protection to prevent home users copying games to the PC where... well, there wasn't any protection past some relatively easy to bypass off-disk stuff because the market wanted hard disk installation. If piracy had really been a problem then moving from one platform with piracy to another with bucketloads of piracy doesn't make sense whilst doing so because the grass looked greener does.

Originally Posted by edd_jedi View Post
It's a bit like the music industry now - people don't make money from music any more because 99% of music in distribution is pirated
Musicians don't make much money from music these days, but companies still make a pretty penny and all the rhetoric you hear about piracy killing music comes from them in the same way the "home taping is killing music" campaign did in the 1980s. Ask yourself how all those big labels with thousands or even tens of thousands of employees worldwide still keep making profits if only 1% of sold music makes them money... either that 1% is a ridiculously huge amount of sales in it's own right to the point where us regular people would be embarrassed to complain about receiving it or someone in the chain is lying about how they're doing.
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