The Best Anti-Piracy Practices Ever Seen in Video Games

You wouldn’t steal a car. So why download the game? Piracy is a longstanding problem that affects many entertainment industries, and the gaming industry is no exception. Developers were constantly looking for the best way to prevent piracy.

Some developers have gotten more creative, coming up with some of the most hilarious anti-piracy measures games have ever seen. Some of these anti-piracy measures are just plain fun, while others are so scary that everyone will think twice before than downloading the game illegally. .

1. Earthbound: x1000 difficulty

Earthbound is already well known for its steep difficulty curves throughout the game, but for those who have played an illegal copy of the game, the difficulty has been increased tenfold. If an illegal copy of Earthbound were discovered, many more enemies would instantly appear in the game than usual. However, they were much stronger than in the original version of the game.

If anyone managed to fight their way through the seemingly endless hordes and reach the boss, the screen would freeze, prompting them to reset the game. Upon restart, the game will erase all saved data.

2 Spyro: Year of the Dragon: Missing Parts

Spyro: Year of the Dragon uses tactics similar to Earthbound to keep people from playing illegal copies of the game. Zoey informs you beforehand that the game is illegal and likely not working properly.

If you persist, an avalanche of mistakes will happen. Characters and items would not spawn, Sparks could not recover his health, and Spyro would sometimes randomly teleport at the start of a level. And if you manage to reach the end, all saved data will be erased. But hey, you can’t say Zoey didn’t warn you.

3. Game Dev Tycoon: piracy glitch

Game Dev Tycoon has the most painfully realistic hack protection method on this list. Game Dev Tycoon is a simulation game where you create a game. You can succeed by fulfilling all your video game dreams or you can fail. And illegal copies of Game Dev Tycoon were doomed from the very beginning.

If an illegal copy of Game Dev Tycoon is found, your game will run without problems. But suddenly you start losing money and people stop buying your game, why? Because hackers started making illegal copies. Suddenly, your video game dreams are shattered. This hacking issue was not present in legitimate copies of the game.

4. The Sims 4: Censored

The developers of The Sims 4 have taken a very sarcastic stance towards pirated copies of their game. If you’ve ever played a Sims game, you may be familiar with the pixelated censorship bubble that appears over your Sim’s private parts when you do something. like taking a shower or going to the toilet.

If an illegal copy is found, this pixelated area will not disappear after your Sim has finished pooping. Instead, your Sim gets into an infinite loop and the pixels eventually expand until the entire screen is censored.

5. The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks: Runaway Train

One of the main features of The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks is the train. In fact, the one who walks the paths of spirits. However, if there had been any hint of hacking in the programming of the game, the train control simply would not have appeared.

The game was completely unplayable without these crucial commands, and players who managed to get their hands on an illegal copy cried all the way to their local game store to pick up a legal copy of the game that they could actually play. .

6 Crysis Warhead: Angry Birds

Crysis Warhead has probably one of the funniest anti-piracy tactics in human history. Instead of shooting bullets, the pirated versions of the game had chickens shooting at your weapon. Chickens certainly have their place in life, but being used as balls is definitely not one of them.

These chickens did not deal any damage to your opponent. Okay, they stun the enemy, but it won’t get you far in the long run. For now, you’re better off playing Angry Birds.

7. Alan Wake: Captain Alan Wake

The developers of Alan Wake accompanied their anti-piracy activities with a touch of satire. Many of the games on this list used tactics that made the game unplayable if perceived to be illegal. But Alan Wake, on the other hand, just made it clear to the hackers that they knew. It is difficult to say whether this made them feel guilty or not.

If you are playing an illegal copy of Alan Wake, the game puts a huge pirate patch on Alan’s face. It didn’t change the gameplay, except that Alan looked more fashionable and a little more illegal.

While the idea of ​​playing Alan Wake with a pirated eyepatch might sound a bit appealing, there are actually real security risks when playing pirated video games or downloading pirated software in general. Not to mention, we want to support the developers making these games so they can do more in the future.

8. Serious Sam 3: Unleash the Kraken

In Serious Sam 3, the approach was more nightmarish. Illegal copy players were endlessly pursued by a giant arachnid resembling a red scorpion. This beast was incredibly fast and only stopped when you were dead. As if that wasn’t enough, she was also invincible.

Playing the game, never knowing when that hideous creature was going to rise up and attack you, was enough for people to buy the game. Playing the real game would have been much more enjoyable were it not for the constant threat of death looming over them. even if it was a little less exciting.

9. Monkey Island Mystery: Dial a Pirate

Secret of Monkey Island had a series of questions early in the game that prevented you from continuing if you didn’t have the Dial-A-Pirate wheel. This cardboard anti-piracy measure included a series of hackers with unique codes that were revealed when lining up matching pieces.

This wheel apparently only came with legitimate purchases and was one of the few physical anti-piracy measures for video games.

10 The Witcher 2: Mistaken Identity

Although many of us believe that the era of piracy is over, unfortunately it is not. Internet piracy has increased in 2022, so it’s not just classic games from the 90s that are using anti-piracy techniques.

If we were evaluating measures to combat piracy, then The Witcher 2 would definitely be in the first place. There are a number of romance mechanics in The Witcher 2 that allow you to unlock cutscenes in which Geralt and an NPC of your choice are involved in a hot cutscene.

However, if you are playing an illegal copy of the game, the NPC of your choice will be replaced by a rather ugly old woman named Marietta Loredo. Of course, this surprise would be enough to scare any player into breaking the law.

Buying games legally is the best way to support the games you love.

While piracy is less common on modern consoles, it was once a scourge that all game developers had to deal with. Let’s hope these quirky and creative anti-piracy measures were enough to keep people from illegally downloading their games and inspire them to support the people who made these amazing games.

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