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The ethics of video game piracy

Content of the article: "The ethics of video game piracy"

Let's talk about pirating video games. Now, full disclosure, I do it a lot. I haven't paid $60 for a game unless I want it on a console or has online benefits that I care about. I will buy some small studio games, and once in a while I'll buy a AAA game on sale, but for most games I'll find a torrent for it. And I don't feel that this is immoral. You might disagree with me, and that's fine, but I just don't see it as immoral.

For one thing, these companies deal in some of the shadiest practices out there. Crunch, preying on addiction, FOMO, and the bullshit lies we saw recently with Control, I just don't feel like the big companies out there deserve my respect.

On top of that, I honestly just do not think $60 is at all reasonable. No game that I've pirated have I thought that $60 was fair for it, and most games I've bought I felt were not fairly priced. Like, for real, the companies will say all this shit about how they're struggling to keep up with the rising cost of making games but given how insanely overpaid these CEO's are, that just feels like bullshit.

And now costs are going up. Soon $70 will be the norm. And that's not even talking about day one DLC, season passes, all the other shit they do to make you pay more money just to get the actual game.

But I know it's not a simple discussion, and I'm curious how you all feel. Like, there are certain studios I'm more than happy to pay full price to, like I pirated Dead Cells and then bought it within a day after seeing that Motion Twin is a worker co-op. But I just got a torrent copy of Control and don't feel a shred of guilt.

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What are your thoughts? Is this even a moral debate? Or is it just about economics? AAA studios are pretty open about not really caring about customers who aren't willing to spend big in game ("whales"), so should I care about their shareholders?


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