Paradox’s plan to fight piracy isn’t to implement DRM or to track down pirates and firebomb their homes. Instead they plan on regularly improving the game with patches. At first the two things don’t seem to be linked but it becomes clear when Paradox reveal a little experiment they ran with Magicka.
Shams Jorjani, VP of acquisitions, also explained how Cities’ DLC – the large, the small, and the purely cosmetic – isn’t for everyone but its sales fund the free updates that will keep Cities fresh.
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“As usual our plan for pirates is to make a great game even better through free updates – making it more convenient to use Steam instead,” Jorjani tweeted. “It’s all about offering the superior service. That’s how we bring down piracy. By making the paid experience a superior one.”
The frequency of updates makes piracy impractical – each patch requires a new build of the game to be uploaded. Back when Paradox released Magicka they released 14 patches in 13 days. “Even the pirates stopped posting new pirated versions after a while,” Jorjani says. “Steam’s autoupdate was easier.”
Jorjani also believes Cities’ mods, exclusively available through the Steam Workshop, will ensure people will buy a copy of the game instead of pirating it.
While discussing updates Jorjani broached the subject of plans for Cities’ DLC. He said that “As long as there’s a player base and demand we will keep making DLC, small and big, into the hundreds of $$$ if needed.” He admits Paradox’s “DLC strategy isn’t for everyone and that’s fine.” If players don’t like it he suggests they “don’t buy it.”
However, he explains, “every time we do release major expansions we also add a ton of free stuff to the base game,” regardless of whether you bought the update or not.
The cosmetic updates, which Jorjani says they’ll do “tons of” are what “help pay for all the free updates”.
So even if you hate DLC and never buy anything- IT’S FINE – you’re still winning – because we’re giving you free updates regardless.
— Shams Jorjani (@ShamsJorjani) March 16, 2015