people are good (an update on our DRM experiment)

ball-and-chain.jpgas some of you already know, world of goo will be released DRM-free on our website.  once a purchase is made, a download link is sent out and there are no restrictions on where and how many times the game can be installed or additional hoops to jump through before it can be played.

so far, the experiment is going well.  we’ve sent the full unprotected game out to the few thousand people who pre-ordered it before this past monday and we haven’t yet found the game on any torrent sites.  we were told about one warez site where someone posted the chapter 1 preview and their magic key (the key is needed because the preview did have some homebrew copy protection, it came out before we decided to go DRM-free).   frankly, we’re pretty amazed and encouraged that this is the extent of the piracy we’ve seen.

so a big 2D thank you to everyone who’s helping us show that if you treat gamers with trust and respect, the same treatment tends to be returned.

i’d like to end with a request for help: if you see world of goo being freely distributed somewhere, please send us a note about it from our contact page.  it’s not something we intend to fight, we’d just like to be able to share the data from this experiment with the rest of the game development community, hopefully to encourage more DRM-free games.

[update: i’ve gathered some data from the last 24 hours about how many people tried to use the license key posted in the warez forum.  there were a total of 77 activation attempts from 17 unique ip addresses.  8 of them from argentina, 2 from israel, and 1 each from australia, denmark, ireland, netherlands, UK, south africa, and USA.  this data doesn’t really say much on its own, but since i already collected it i figured i’d post it. ]

65 Responses to “people are good (an update on our DRM experiment)”

  1. Hallas Says:

    I have already decided not to buy games with aggressive DRM such as TAGES StarForce or Securom that gives nothing to player and with huge probability will cause problems on his PC (and, of course, it is doing nothing to pirates). And if we are talking about EA and Ubisoft – I will boycott all products from them but it looks like I will be forced to boycott others publishers too.

    It’s their loss, not mine.

    Still I want to play on PC and that’s why I am looking for games from smaller developers. There is a chance that they are doing their work with passion so their games are… better, full with no signs of scissors held by men in black suit saying ‘This is to difficult to gamers’ or ‘What are these? Nipples? We don’t care that everybody has one (or two). Cut them from game right now’.

    So I will buy World of Goo as soon as i will have may PayPal account.It’s good, it’s fun, it’s accessible and it’s DRM-free. Should I want more? I don’t think so.

  2. World of Goo und das DRM Experiment - - Foren Says:

    […] das DRM Experiment Wie die Macher von World of Goo ( Review in K

  3. Frustrated Says:

    If you are using the net through a proxy you won’t be able to register first-time even if you purchase the game legitimately. :(

  4. jeran Says:

    I say, i did play the demo. I got the tower of goo games before, loved them, then i came across the World Of Goo, and thought this looks like WIN. so me, being a cheap-o, i pirated it. It was unavoidable. But i loved it so much, I bought a second copy with real money.
    make another sweet game so i can do the same thing again.

  5. World of Goo | Fatalitility, where Logic ends... Says:

    […] Sehr löblich ist übrigens auch der Ansatz das Spiel komplett ohne Kopierschutz auszuliefern und somit dem Kunden nicht wieder eines von diesen unerwünschten Mogelpaketen unterzujubeln. Mehr dazu und über den “Erfolg” des Verzichtes auf DRM auch auf: […]

  6. Nick Says:

    grr. pretty much all my friends have pirated the game :(

  7. icStatic Says:

    Thanks for an excellent game! Hopefully the success of a clever game without DRM from a tiny indie company will send the message to the industry fat cats that they should be concentrating their efforts on innovation, new IP and treating their customers with respect – rather than shovelware licensed garbage and overused franchises that we are becoming accustomed to. One can only hope!

    Madden NFL: 2056 anyone?… anyone?… I thought not…

  8. Zombie Says:

    This is the first game in quite a while that I haven’t pirated. Well, actually, to be honest, I did pirate it first, but then when I had such an enjoyable time playing it and saw that it was $20, from an Indi developer, and with no DRM, even I couldn’t resist paying for it legitimately.

    Bravo guys, I hope you do well out of this, and thanks for such a gem of a game!

  9. drmgotohell Says:

    I´m honest with you. I downloaded a pirated copy of this game as i wanted to give it a test ride. But now i kinda fell in love with it, just played it for 1 and a half hours straight.

    What a great and wonderful piece of art you produced. Your game reminds me about Lemmings on the Amiga, addictive gameplay and heart warming music. Thank You!

    What more to say? Oh yes, I just purchased the boxed version of World Of Goo on Amazon.

    DRM can go to hell, i stopped buying drmed games alltogether.

    Again, Thank You!

  10. J-F. Says:

    Dear 2D boy,

    So I bought your game on Wiiware already, but I would like to play it on my laptop. Should I feel bad for dowloading it by torrent? I already paid for the game after all… I think that if I already own a license, I should have the freedom to play it on every hardware I got.

    Maybe you should put every version on the DVD (Wii, Mac, PC, Linux) so buying the game would give you the freedom to play it on the hardware – OS of your choice.

    I don’t think you would loose much by doing so.

    Thank you for this great, addicting game!

  11. Jimmy Z Says:

    I purchased this game thru Amazon and love it, but heck, my IP is static and I used to watch it change numerous times a day, every day. That means after owning this game for a month, these ‘pirate’ researchers are going to have a result of worse than 99.99% piracy just from me and my single legitimate copy of a the game! Needless to say I have now switched off reporting scores, but too late now. This 90% piracy figure spreading like wildfire is complete crap, and it is highly irresponsible for the researchers to allow this flawed half-truth to be perpetuated. More unfortunately, it will now be used to justify the invasive and destructive measures used by EA and DRM software like SecuROM. I would’ve thought you ex-EA employees who authored this game would have had a few more clues than that, but apparently not.

    Love the game, but really not impressed by this flawed ‘research’. DRM punishes legitimate users and does not stop pirating. I don’t buy any EA titles any more after having SecuROM disable a USB combo drive and some older software, and eventually having to wipe and reinstall my entire o/s to get rid of it. Anyone who says DRM software is harmless are liars, and furthermore, when I buy a game, I own it – not after 3 installs only, but forever, otherwise I should get a full refund if I return the software once the installs are used up. Period.

    I am strongly against pirating software and those who support it by buying pirated copies, but if there has been anything that’s pushed me towards changing my view, it is SecuROM and EA.

  12. Ron Carmel Says:

    @jimmy z: you clearly didn’t read the whole story. the dynamic IP argument doesn’t hold, look at the methodology outlined here and you’ll see:

  13. Carsten Says:

    I fell in love with the game after trying the demo and bought it right away.

    I got to know about the game by word of mouth:
    It has been mentioned by “O” in the podcast “Extra Live Radio (ELR)” episode 215 from and with Scott Johnson and also with Brian and “O”.

  14. lars Says:

    17 or so, unique ip adresses? thats close to nothing,and this is very good, it proves that people pay for quality like this ,probably because it is not as expensive as the other games out there. Two thumbs up:) This game rules, i bought several copies, one to give away and 1 for myself, and one extra backup that are placed on the coolest spot in the bookshelf :):)

    now you guys -have- to make a sequel :) if not, ill make a petition and gather millions of signatures and shove it up*Cough*..i mean , yeah. -we want a sequel:)

  15. calin Says:

    I am one of those who actually downloaded the game from a torrent after seeing some youtube videos and being impressed by it. Now i actually want to pay you even if there is nothing forcing me (serial numbers and whatnot). Its just that i love this game so much i cannot just steal it from you guys. You deserver every penny and i really hope that your message is heard by as many people as possible. Also all of them should do like i am doing now.

    Congratulations for making this awesome game. Perfect message too! Love it and i hope you will consider making World of Goo 2