This post has been a long time coming, and while I have been relatively silent on the whole thing, this is something that needed to be said. Now, there are two reasons I have been quiet about this and they are as follows: One, I know some of the purists out there will find my stance a bit “controversial” (mind you I legit made air quotes when I said that) and I didn’t want to deal with the backlash from that when I was just getting my start… believe it or not I am sensitive about that sort of thing. Two, I was a pirate myself and I had no desire to draw attention to myself by making any claims one way or the other, again in order to avoid backlash…
Before you guys start sharpening your axes and grabbing your pitchforks, I’ll have you know I am reformed and believe me, I have the bank statements to prove it! So, I more or less have a pretty strong opinion about people pirating games, however, you should note that I am not a purist in any sense of the word, so my stance is double sided. I am prepared for a bit of backlash with this one and honestly, you’d be pretty hard pressed to change my opinion on this topic since I have literally been on both sides of the debate. But, I do encourage you all to share your thoughts on this topic in the comments section, however, keep the personal attacks to yourself. I am not against telling someone to *clears throat* “Go fuck themselves”, and that’s literally all the warning I plan on giving, because I do not tolerate personal attacks.
*Disclaimer: This post contains my thoughts and my opinions about piracy and such I tend to use rather colorful language when discussing things I am passionate about, be warned that there will be a bit of swearing involved in this post. I could have censored this post, but I didn’t!
The Short Answer
So, like I said this is a two sided answer and I will be treating it as such. On principle I think piracy is morally wrong and regardless of your circumstances or arguments that you are a poor college student, or whatever the kids are saying these days, you’re full of shit for doing it. I was a poor college student once upon a time and I know what that’s like, but if it came down to food or a new game, FOOD WOULD ALWAYS WIN!! Now, if the choice was between a textbook and a game, the game would most certainly win. So, all of those folks that pirate games because they are poor college students, might as well stop reading now because I have no sympathy for you! 🙂
For everyone else, if a game is for sale in your country of origin and you still decide that you want to go ahead an download that free link/torrent from one of those delightful host sites, just know that you too are full of shit! Because not only are you NOT supporting the games that you love, but you are also showing developers that they are wasting their time and money bringing over a game and as such ensuring that they will be less willing to bring over other games in the future…
See, your selfishness is stopping others from having access to the games that they love, because you for whatever reason couldn’t wait until you had the cash for a game. My sympathies towards your situation, but, if you were so financially challenged in the first place, a game should have been the last thing on your mind, so again, you could have waited… FOMO never killed anyone. I have been strapped for cash when a new game is released and you know what I do? I fucking wait until I have enough money for the damn game or I play another game from my backlog. It’s simple, really, really simple.
Before Pirating a game ask yourself these questions:
- Would waiting a few months to play a game really be the end of the world?
- Will I cease to exist without this game?
- Will the otome police arrest me for not playing this game day one?
Hopefully all of those answers should be a resounding “no”… So, rather than pirating a game, just wait, it’s okay, I promise!
The Messy Answer
So, I literally just established that I am not for piracy if a game is available for purchase in your country of origin. Now, I can already hear the whispers of descent among some of you purist and regardless of what I say after this point, you guys aren’t going to agree with me. And that’s okay, I didn’t expect to change anyone else’s opinion with this post, maybe reform a pirate or two, but mostly I wrote this so that you guys know where I stand on piracy in the otome community. Got it? Good!
So, where I split hairs are patches. Yup, patches! For those of you that don’t know, patches are when independent translators take it upon themselves to translate a game that would otherwise probably never be chosen for localization outside of the country of origin. So think scanlators but for games instead of manga! I am personally okay with people downloading patches and or patched games, since the vast majority of those will never ever ever be localized. Of course, that is not the rule, and a handful of previously patched games have been picked up for localization, the most recent example being Hadaka Shitsuji which was patched in 2011, but is being localized by MangaGamer now.
So once a game is picked up for localization, folks should cease distributing patches or at the very least in the countries where the game will be available. On the flip side, folks should stop downloading the patches and buy the game when it becomes available in their country. Simple!
But, as much as I like patches, I do acknowledge that they are a bit of a double edged sword… While patches do drum up interest, their very existence kind of decreases the demand for an official release, since the game is already available for free. Plus, if a dev sees that there is a patch of a game, they’d just refuse to develop an official release and/or take legal action against the patch creators. So, ya know, downsides…
But, the one thing that absolutely drives me mad are when folks take it upon themselves to crack games that have already been localized. Most recently a crack team released links to Nightshade a mere three days after it was released and not only is that a slap in the face to D3Publisher, who saw fit to have the game translated for an English language release with the original Japanese voice cast I might add! This is not an isolated case either, the same thing happened with Amnesia Memories and it’s the main reason Iffy refuses to do Steam releases. But, could you blame them? They lost a lot of money with Amnesia.
It’s not easy to get otome games brought over to the West, especially when game companies are convinced that women don’t game as much as men. But, with a niche market like otome games, it’s damn near impossible, since the fan base is relatively small as is. So when assholes decide to crack a game for the purpose of distributing it online for free… that is both extremely selfish and disgusting. Because, while the game’s publishers and developers will feel a small hit in their profits, they’ll pretty much be able to bounce back and recoup the loss eventually…. But the fans, those are the biggest losers here, since developers will be less inclined to waste money on bringing over future titles. It’s not rocket science, pirate a game and you run the risk of companies never releasing another game in the West!
There are a ton of otome games that are coming to the West in the near future and I’m greedy, I want more of them, so it felt like the right time to weigh in on piracy… Since how we handle these new releases and announcements as a community will determine whether or not this rise in otome game localizations will increase in the coming months and years. So please don’t fuck this up for the rest of us…
Of course there are a ton of circumstances surrounding why people pirate games, some are a bit more forgivable than others, but it all boils down to access. Now that doesn’t mean that I’m okay with people pirating games, if a game is available for purchase where you live, buy it. There is no excuse for pirating that particular game. If you don’t have the money for the game at the time of release… WAIT! Sales happen often, so chances are if you wait, you’ll wind up getting it at a cheaper price. Plus, the world won’t end if you can’t get a game…
Piracy really only hurts the fans, so before you decide to pirate a game ask yourself, “Am I okay with this being the last otome game I play?” Because chances it just might be…
Well that’s my stance and honestly it’s not nearly as controversial as I thought… What are your thoughts on piracy? Do you think that patches help or hinder the gaming community? Let me know what you think in the comments section. If you like what you see, LIKE this post or FOLLOW Blerdy Otome! As always THANK YOU FOR READING!!
11 thoughts on “Don’t Do It: Where I Stand on Piracy in the Otome Community”
Wow, I didn’t know that happened with Nightshade and Amnesia…that sucks. I can’t believe people take the time to do that. I can def understand patches for games not available in that country, but games already available here? That’s terrible.
Yeah, it’s easier to crack PC games so when they put them on steam ppl just can’t help themselves… smh.
Yeah, patches are great, especially with games that will probably never be released in the west. But, if a game is already localized that should be an understood no go…
I think our opinions match with this. I feel the same way with music. If it’s available, I’ll pay for a download, but sometimes things just aren’t available in that capacity. I always look for the paying option first, because I believe in supporting artists and creators. I think this is parallel to your localization argument. Since I’m a writer and I hope to be a published author some day, I wouldn’t want someone to pirate my work, because I’d lose money, and hell so many authors give away free samples, it seems to defeat the purpose.
I’m curious about your opinion on sites like Kisscartoon.me that stream pretty much everything including anime for free. I’m pretty sure they’re located somewhere offshore (and the site goes down every few months or so for a month or so because they have to switch up their servers (at least that’s my theory).
Yeah it all boils down to access for me, if you have access to something and still refuse to support, that’s a problem. Exactly, folks should think about this sort of thing from that perspective!!
Ha ha ha ha ya, see… about that LOL.
I subscribe to streaming sites like Crunchyroll, DramaFever, and Netflix, however, in the past I did use free streaming sites to watch my anime… so again, I’m kind of on the fence about the whole thing, but… But, if you have access to anime legally… *waves hand vaguely*
It’s definitely one of those weird situations where I could sound like a big old hypocrite lol. But a lot of times I don’t know how to obtain something legally and the, well not illegal, but not as legal channels are right there and much easier to access and the thing you want isn’t on the legal access, so yeah. It’s a touch subject.
Yep, unfortunately, heard all the excuses before. “I can’t afford it!” “They get more fans!” “They’ve got enough money!”
Sometimes I get really sick of having to subsidize all those freeloaders. Then these “fans” who just get it online for free complain when the next installment or similar title is never released.
Those excuses drive me nuts! Exactly, I get not having a money for a game, but it won’t kill folks to just wait! Sigh and what’s worse is that they don’t realize how much they hurt the community!
Now, it’s been almost 10 years since I pirated an otome game. You know back when there was one* otome game in English with a good translation and if you wanted to play otome games, you better knew your Japanese well enough. I didn’t come with any excuses for pirating, but I did do one thing: I bought the games I liked. And I don’t mean “oh, so you played the entire game, then bought it because it was like your fav and, like, got it second-hand?” but “This is some good shit 30 minutes in, let’s shut this down, delete and save up to buy the game.” Naturally, being ill and poor I still haven’t gotten every game from pre-2013 that I liked, because I have also bought games I never played that I just liked the art of or sounded good or just had intriguing titles and were recent releases. Still on my list to get, though. Now it’s almost exclusively second-hand from that list, because let’s face it, the golden era of otome games were around that time, but most haven’t been ported, and likely never will be.
But, as I said, it’s been almost 10 years now. I’m still as stupid or smart as I was then, because when there was signs that otome might become more frequent, I just dropped it, you know? I still get games in Japanese, and have gotten newly released games since as well. Even though I could get these game in Japanese and not be fucking upset every goddamn translation, I want to support the good ones, so I try to buy any games I like.
Would I say buying the game justifies pirating? No. Because pirating even make Japanese companies hesitant to begin with. Like, if you pirate their games, they can take some amount of financial damage. Otomate is huge and might not go at a major loss, but there are many others who aren’t big names. It hurts. That one copy you could have helped them a lot. So what if the shipping fees or customs raise the price — if you think it’s worth pirating, it’s worth paying the extra costs.
The world looks different now. This isn’t 2011 with people being pissed off about the barks of laughter in Hakuoki, while it was the only game available. There is a market nowadays. Sure, the translations can be awful and that’s fine to have every complaint on as the games and the consumers deserve proper and finished translations (honestly, I’d say it’s more or less sacrilege on *any* game being treated with horrendous translations such as the ones that have been seen in otome games), but there is a market.
So, this is just a roundabout way to say I honestly agree with you (while explaining where I come from, which might be completely unnecessary). Patches, fine. But not when the game has been announced to be localised or is localised. Or was; unless digital download only, you can still find games no longer on the market. There’s no excuse. There never was, there never will be.
If someone thinking pirating is fine reads this (despite how long this comment is): Don’t do it — it’s like stabbing yourself in the gut because you’re hungry while trying to take away world hunger. You’re not getting anything out of it, nor helping anyone else in the process.
And this could have been a blog post on its own, but it’s a comment now. Likely will be as unseen as my blog posts get, regardless. For TL;DR read above paragraph.
*Technically there was two, but Yo-Jin-Bo was unavailable for purchase in English for everyone at the time, which I think is a legitimate reason to say there was one. But last time I checked (which was a while ago) it was available for purchase.
(PS. I know it’s an old post, just wanted to throw my opinion out there.)
I just wish localization companies respected us more bc jast blue for example promised a simulrelase for Slow Damage and they keep postponing the release shamelessly. It’s already been a year since the game got released in Japan.. They do some really unreasonable stuff, like announcing the “cancelation” of a game only to say that they are still considering it a week after (lamento). Things like this make me lose all my trust in companies. They also don’t even put the whole game on steam and sell 18+ patches on their website for only specific currencies like $. I didn’t know this when I bought my sweet pool and togainu no chi copy from steam to show “support”. You can imagine how angry I was to find out that my game wasn’t full. I’m just tired of this half assed treatment and even with steam’s localized pricings most games are still quite pricey, so the least I expect is good service. Idk.. I hope in the future things will go a lot more smoother for the games that come to the west
Mmm, you bring up a good point, but it seems like JAST has been pretty flaky with their releases and that’s a shame since they seem to be one of the few publisher making an effort to release the Nitro+ games.
Hopefully one day another publisher will step in to pick up more games–though Mangagamer has been giving us a few BL games every now and again and Moonchime Localization is going to be releasing Tokyo Onmiyoji soon