Piracy has been a topic plaguing gaming, music, and the entire entertainment industry for years. There are several points of view either supporting its existence since it gives those who can't afford all the video games a chance to try them out, while others believe it is basically a form of stealing a studio and their respective development team's hard work and investments. Well, Placeholder Gameworks decided to willingly approach torrent sites to officially share their creation, Death and Taxes.
The studio reached out to Torrent Freak to explain the reasoning behind why would they share an official free version of Death and Taxes when the title is available for purchase through Steam for $12.99. The developer believes indie titles are inevitably put on torrent sites, and they believe it is better for their own community to experience the title with no hiccups or "shitty workarounds." This isn't the first incident of its kind, as indie shooter Danger Gazers' developer did the same. Small studios consider this move as a publicity and marketing tool to encourage more people to try out their game, which some of them eventually purchase the title legally to support the developer for putting the community first.
I’d just like the inevitable release to be on my own terms, meaning that it’s the best possible version, that people can enjoy hassle-free, not a potentially janky release with shitty workarounds or other problems. It’s super difficult to stand out nowadays, especially for a game that has literally ZERO budget. I can just hope that having a free version out will help the game and its ideas reach a wider community than we would have been otherwise able to connect to.
I received assistance from 1337x and RARBG. Both sites’ staffers were super helpful and helped me get up the release within minutes. Mad props to them! I literally couldn’t have done that without them.
What do you think of Placeholder Gameworks' decision? Should more indie developers follow the same path?