Project Zomboid has gained a cult following since it released earlier this year. Like all indie games, it relies entirely on dedicated support from fans in order to survive. So when people decide to pirate the game, it's going to hit the studio pretty hard. Hard enough to force the three-man team to take the game offline.
It's worth noting that the game being stolen costs a measly five bucks. Stay classy, gamers!
"We’ve always turned a blind eye to pirate copies, even on occasion recommending people who had problems with the legit version try a pirate version until the issues are resolved," said the team. "We realise the potential viral benefits of pirate copies, and while obviously we’d prefer people to purchase our issue is not with those."
The issue is with an exploit that's been released, allowing people to steal the game en masse simply by clicking an "update" button. The Indie Stone team has had to take the game down due to the risk of losing the money it made back on development costs. Hopefully the game is back soon with tighter security measures, because people have been enjoying the game and I think it's only fair the guys who made it recoup their investment.
Seriously, when a game like this gets hit, especially with developers who have previously been so cool about piracy, I think it's safe to say that the pirates involved went from morally grey individuals to straight-up shitty little bastards.
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