I fell in love with Fallout

It’s been almost a decade since I’ve played any RPG video game. During the last ten years, I stories in games haven’t perhaps been my main focus. Especially in the recent years, I’ve concentrated my gaming around multiplayer games with shorter playing times.

I finished Fallout 1 week or two ago, and one thing particular was how the choices I made in the game were represented in the end. In the game, there was certain action (see how I don’t spoil game plot.. even when the game was made 1998, ahem) that affected certain community. I could have chose a difficult path and helped the community, but I took a shortcut. I thought “whadda hell, I can’t be arsed to help ‘em” and chose the quicker option.

In the end of the game, I had won something major, but this community didn’t do so well. Thanks to my actions (or lack of them).

I don’t know why I didn’t complete the game decade ago, but I must say that the game was fun still today. It was damn hard at times, but fun too. I actually didn’t want so much combat, as I was more interested in character dialogue, sub-stories, main story and decisions that affect the game. I liked how the game didn’t hold my hand telling me “now I must go to speak to man there (let’s mark that in your map) and maybe he will tell you about secret X”. Oh noes, I had to figure out what I needed to do.

Few times it was bit irritating to wander around, few times I needed to get save files from past to get pass certain stuff… but all in all, I actually eventually learned to like it, even though I whined about lack of auto-save earlier (in Fallout 2).

Eventually, I learned to like these things that game didn’t have:

  • No auto-save (I learned to save intelligently, and it didn’t cut immersion)
  • No achievements (thank god)
  • No hand-holding (for a long time, finding some ammo felt like a true achievement even when game didn’t tell me “Achievement!! You found goddamn ammo! Here’s a badge for you!! Aren’t you one happy camper now!?”. No, finding the ammo was achievement. I didn’t need game to tell me that. I felt intelligent for figuring out stuff.)
  • No one straight path to victory: instead, I could choose what to do, and actions affected the whole outcome of the game and story. Really nice, really nice.

And it cost just $5.99 which was a steal.

Amazing that a game that was made about 14 years ago still beats many modern games. Easily.

How to deal with Evil Pirate companies that clone your game

Sometimes you encounter bit shitty situation where:

Well, there’s few different ways to handle this:

  • You can wee on their tent, and make superior PR move that gets picked everywhere around the net. (Recommended)
  • You can whine how there’s evil corporations and that your stuff shouldn’t be copied.
  • You can concentrate on building success that doesn’t depend on stuff that can be cloned. Match-3 games can be cloned. Tower sim can be cloned. RPGs with deep storyline is harder to clone.
  • You can make shitty game that doesn’t sell anything. These are rarely cloned too.
  • You can ignore em. (Pretty good plan)
  • You can think what’s important, why you are making games. Profit? Passion?
  • You can make gross zombie games. Big studios rarely clone those. (Hah!)

Now, regarding the “game mechanics can be cloned”. I think this is pretty good thing. Sure, ripping off somebody’s game mechanics and then cloning pretty much the whole game with different graphics is bit shitty move… but that’s how it needs to be.

Businesswise, it’s pretty profitable to be second in the market. Clone hit games, and make some changes. But that’s something hundred zillion other corporations are doing. Zynga isn’t only one cloning their way to success. If cloning was the way to go, then how come there aren’t as successful other cloners?

And this also makes one really ponder why you are making games? Are you making games that you can profit? Or are you making games mechanics & games… that are spread all over the world? Doesn’t it make one happy that by creating something cool that everybody wants to clone… something cool that others can benefit from? Isn’t that a pretty darn sweet thing?

Or, is it so that you were doing this stuff for profit? In that case, jump to one of those clone factories and see how happy things are there.

Or do you just “want fair fight”? Well, time to wake up. This is a really open market world where best offering (not necessarily best product) wins the profits. If you do game that can be cloned by a big studio, then you knew what you were against when you first started. Or did you really think that after you make your smash hit, nobody would be interested in getting the money too?

“But this kills innovation”
Tough luck. And yes, for some genres at least. At one point Match-3 games were selling like pancakes. They were hot stuff (not sure how they do nowadays). Now, is the innovation in match-3 games killed? I suppose. There’s every now and then one new different match-3 game but I feel the market is pretty saturated.

So, if you do some popular gaming thing that can be cloned, of course you can except that there won’t be innovation.

We can cry and bite our legs off, but that doesn’t change anything. If we are worried about cloning, then we should do stuff that’s hard to clone.

We know that there’s cloners waiting for the next hit game. That’s perfectly fine. I mean, creating a clone isn’t going to guarantee success. It’s risky. Not all cloners are profitable. It takes heaps of effort too, and is not “easy way” to go.

There’s people doing games for passion, and not getting money. That’s perfectly fine too. Whining about “but rules should favor me as [insert random reason here]” is not going to cut it. If you don’t like the rules, you can go play somewhere else.

So… who’s evil?
I think it’s quite natural to think that Zynga is “evil” or “doing wrong” when they clone a game. They are a company who want to make profit. They have business strategy that is targeted to maximizing profit. They might steal an idea or two, but so does everybody else. They might clone stuff they can clone, but so is everybody else. Zynga is just doing things better than many other corporations.

I’m not saying Zynga is less evil than me (slightly richer though). They simply seem to have different values from me. I try steal every game idea I can, but I try add something unique, something of my own in the creation. I want to do something I like doing, and something I like to experience. If somebody was to clone that stuff and make profits, that’s pretty cool. Next time they need ideas, they know where to find me.

I feel that the chaps at nimblebit chose the right way to deal with Zynga’s copy & “we wanna buy you” offer. They turned this into a PR thing which favors them. Zynga can clone the game, but they cannot clone the fact that nimblebit has the “small good guys against big evil corporation” edge that can make an interesting story. Nimblebit managed to create a cool story out of the situation, and I’m pretty sure they benefit from this.

That’s the name of the game.

P.S. And if Zynga is successful, do you really think that other big players won’t notice it and challenge them? This zoo is filled with predators who are ready to attack each other as well.

How to kill immersion in 5 easy steps

I’m mainly taking an RPG game or adventure game point-of-view here, or any game where story plays very important role.

Here you go:

  1. Have big loading times and use word “loading” when switching between places.
  2. Show the same dialogue options over and over (if you wanna ensure that “character might need that info”, then make so that character has journal where conversation was stored)
  3. Hold the players hand by (1) first letting character tell what to do, (2) then showing text telling what to do, (3) then pointing the next goal on the map regarding what to do and (4) showing hint “maybe I should go there” in the journal. (This one is tricky: on the other hand you don’t want to player to be lost not knowing what to do next… but on the other hand too much information kills immersion. Check this video ‘if Quake was done today’)
  4. Making player guess what you thought that should be done next. If player knows what should happen next, but your game user interface prevents (in RPG, not talking about car driving game) him from reaching the goal, that kills immersion. There’s a great article about this at Raph Koster’s site.
  5. Make character pick dialogue option he thinks is ok, when in reality the other party takes it as offense. This too can be tricky, but bear in mind that as a not-native English speaking chap, I might miss some nuances of conversations… and sometimes I might pick dialogue option that I thought was friendly, when in reality it was offensive. There’s no easy way to get past through this option though, and not sure what’s a good solution (other than accept the fact that this way I learn better English…)

Anything to add to this list? Complaints or solutions?

If somebody buys your game, there’s about 42% chance he plays it

By summing up totals for each answers in buy vs play poll, it can be summed up that after somebody buys a Steam game, there’s about 42% chance that he actually plays it for more than 2 hours.

The audience of this blog are mainly game developers, so that affects the outcome of the poll. My not so wild guess is that if audience would be mainly gamers, the percentage would be much, much higher. As you can see from the earlier blog post replies, some folks do play all the games they buy.

I presume there are also gamers who don’t play all the games they buy, but what is quite certain that game developers like to *just* buy the games.

Why would this be? My guess is one or some of the following reasons apply:

  • For research purposes: hearing about some game and then testing mechanics can be enough for a game developer to buy the game.
  • To bring old memories back. Every now and then there’s new game that you played 20 years ago and either a remake or similar game appears, and you just want to add it in your collection.
  • To increase your collection, you hoarder.
  • To support game development. This can be somewhat funny… that game developers buy each others games to support development. I do this too.

And I bet there’s some other reasons (feel free to add).

But whatever the reason, it is quite strange that nowadays we buy games we won’t quite likely even play.

Why is that?

Should we all start making intro screens from now on?

My one hour Fallout 2 gaming session and bitching about lack of auto-save

Yesterday, I bought Fallout 2 and played it for like one hour or so. During the session, I managed to go through trial, and almost killed one plant and then finally made my way into woods to find a dog. I found dog, tried to come back and then gecko killed me. It was man-size gecko. Fast bastards.

I don’t know what happened to the dog, but then I encountered a game over screen showing bones of a dead human. Text indicated that it was bad thing for mankind too as they were not saved.

Then I saw the start menu.

Then… I started wondering if there was auto-saves, but heheee, there were no such things as autosaves in ’99. Nah, I should have saved the game and not mess with the gecko.

Okay, I realize that now.

Now, I might suck at Fallout but do I have to go through the damn trial again? I found a great strategy of fighting which consisted of “hit & run”. Hit once, run 4 squares away. Wait spider to follow and hit again. Repeat for a long time.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I like Fallout 2. It was game I never played in my childhood and I want to correct that error.

But, I started thinking stuff from game designers point-of-view. I encountered a permanent death. All my progress was lost, and I have to restart.

I started thinking: “does this make game more fun?”

I doubt it.

Okay, if there would have been auto-save… then I could have wanted to continue from that point and try saving the dog bit differently. Or, since there was no in-built autosave I could have just saved the game every 15 minutes.

…but that sort of breaks immersion to me. I’m going on a mission and tribesmen there and I can have ask guidance and all, and then trout slap to my face: “HEY, I GOTTA SAVE NOW” my brain reminds me.

I think permanent death works great in games where rounds are short. For example, Rogue Spear multiplayer was great. One shot and you could have to wait for the round to end. It was pure genius and added to thrill.

(And to clarify: permanent death means all your progress is lost and hell no your next character can pick up your experience/items/stuff/anything and no loading either. It’s one shot thing: if you die, you must start game from zero. That’s permanent death. Period. Everything else isn’t.)

Fallout’s (okay, it’s decade old game, I know) lack of auto-save – in my humble opinion – does NOT add to the gaming experience. I’d rather have one slot that I cannot save/load whenever I want, but so that it would autosave like every 30 minutes or at critical points (like just before going to critical area or something).

I think that way no much immersion is lost since I don’t have to go to pause menu & save the game… and it would still offer me meaningful choices to make. I would know that I have to make good decisions, since I’d have just one slot where the game is saved. No fooling around, but thinking what to do next.

Don’t get me wrong: the game’s just great. I’m just thinking out loud about permanent death & auto-save.

What you think?

China, you are not alone – here comes the Great Firewall of Finland

First, I must point out that I dislike piracy.

But if censorship is the alternative “solution”, then I welcome piracy. If I have to choose between “piracy is ok” and “censorship is ok”, then I choose “piracy is ok”. Besides, in this case, censorship has zero effect on actual piracy. Which means my tax payer money just got wasted in Finnish court, thank you very much.

Today, it was reported that Finnish court decided that ISP must block certain domain which parrot lovers use to search illegal stuff, and this is pretty shitty thing to do.

(sarcasm) I would link to the page but my site might get to the Finnish block list so I won’t (/sarcasm).

The fact that Finnish Court can order ISP to block domains, that’s bad. Really Bad. Don’t get me wrong. I’m quite against piracy, but censoring domains is not the way to fight piracy (if you are into that sort of thing).

Now, the court ruled that one of the Finnish Internet operators (we have few major ISP) must block it’s customers access to thepiratebay.org.

The people who use TPB can do the following though:

  • They can use thepiratebay.se
  • They can use google.fi for illegal torrent search
  • They can use million other similar search sites to find the stuff they want. Blocking 1 site has absolutely no difference to those who wanna pirate stuff
  • They can use OpenDNS (thanks @taboobuilder) or whatnot to get to thepiratebay.org

What now happens is the following:

  • TBP just got more fame.
  • The copyright owners who started this court thing, don’t realize that they do more harm to themselves with this. Now TBP and other sites just get more publicity when different medias cover it, and more people might start to think “hey, I wanna pirate too!”
  • We might be entering in censorship era here in Finland.

I talked with one pirate who never buys movies (he buys music instead) who said that he actually uses google for searching torrents. He says it’s much better search engine system than TPB.

So, the next logical conclusion is that Finnish Court also blocks Google. And who knows, some people might share links via Facebook or Twitter, so let’s block those as well.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not supporter of piracy.

But I hate this sort of stupidity.

Censoring site this way is wrong way to fight piracy.

And we really should not be “anti-piracy” but “pro-customers”.

We can try stop people who never buys our stuff from getting our stuff for free, but I think better idea is to concentrate on giving absolutely superb stuff for those who want to buy our stuff.

Just saying.

Time for another “how many bought Steam games are you actually playing” poll

This poll is relatively simple, and will show that we are damn good customers!

  1. First, count how many bought Steam games you have in your library. (If you are not sure, just take a rough guess)
  2. Then, count how many games have you played at least for 2 hours

Divide “games played” with “games count” to get percentage, and answer the poll here:

I have about 30 bought games in steam, and less than 10 that I’ve played more than 2 hours. That’s 10/30, aka roughly 33%.

[poll id=46]

Here’s why pirates are important to our whole industry, nations and technological progress

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t necessarily like what you parrot lovers do, but I feel that there’s certain stuff that gets forgotten in all this piracy discussion. I’m taking economical point-of-view, and showing you in a pretty concrete way how we’d be screwed if there wasn’t pirates. (And, we’d might be in bad situation too if everybody would be pirating)

And no, pirating doesn’t make you as cool as LeChuck. Image googled and used without permission. I hope I don’t get into deep shit thanks to this.

I read one chap claiming that “pirates cost us (movie industry) 1 billion dollars revenues yearly” (figure that I just invented since I cannot remember the exact sum, but let’s say it’s 1 billion).

Now, pirates come and say “that’s not true!”.

But, I feel that’s pretty bad response. It’s somewhat irrelevant too. Let’s see what happens if we agree with the entertainment industry chap. That’s not necessarily a shinier future for the whole industry, or for technological progress for that matter. Let’s say that piracy costs for example 1 billion of lost revenue yearly to software makers.

1 billion is lost… but who have it?
Here’s the thing that these chaps fail to see:

the lost revenue from software manufacturers goes somewhere else, like to perhaps to hardware manufacturers

This is important, and this is also how software makers benefit. I explain.

The more revenue harware manufacturers make, the better computers they can make. More memory, more speed, and everything costs less.

That’s hugely important. I repeat the sentence bit differently, it’s that important:

if makers of hardware get more revenue, they can use that money to boost the development of computers

If CPU manufacturer gets more money, they can spend that money on research, and get faster computers at cheaper price which benefits software makers since cost of computers is getting lower, which means software makers don’t need to spend that much money to computers.

Let’s do an another example.

Let’s think of example world, called NormalWorld. In normal world, there’s pirates, non-pirates and something between. Here’s the population:

  • 50% of population are Parrot Lovers, they spend 1 billion dollars to hardware and illegally pirate all the software, and spend 1 billion to Ship industry.
  • 50% of population are Good Citizens, who spend 1 billion dollars on hardware and 1 billion dollars to software. But no money to Ship industry.
  • In NormalWorld, software industry makers are spending 0.5 billion to buy better computers from hardware industry.

In NormalWorld, hardware industry is doing fine (2.5 billion total = 1 billion from parrot folks, 1 billion from Good and 0.5 from software), ship industry too is going strong (1 billion from Parrot Lovers), and so is software (0.5 billion total = they get 1 billion from Good but lose 0.5 to hardware).

Everybody praises how Good Citizens are moral and respectable people, and everybody loves them (expect the parrots, who like more the other chaps).

But there are people who say that we should see what our neighbour, SopaWorld does. In SopaWorld, there’s no piracy.

This leads to the following situation:

  • 50% of population are Parrot Lovers there as well, forced to spend 1 billion to software industry, spending 0 billion to hardware, and ship industry gets 1 billion.
  • 50% of population are Good Citizens, who spend 1 billion dollars on hardware and 1 billion dollars to software. But no money to Ship industry.
  • In SopaWorld, software industry makers are spending 1.5 billion to buy expensive computers from hardware industry.

The hardware makers have less money on research, so they sell computers at 3 times higher price since they have got no technological progress which makes components cheaper. It follows that:

In SopaWorld, hardware industry is still doing fine thanks to higher prices (2.5 billion, 0 billion from parrot folks, 1 billion from Good and 1.5 from software), ship industry too is going strong (1 billion), and so is software (only 0.5 billion total = they need to buy 3x more expensive computers).

As you can see, the overall result is exactly the same as in NormalWorld. In NormalWorld, pirates bought so much hardware that software makers didn’t need to spend that much money, but in SopaWorld, pirates aren’t supporting hardware industry, so software industry needs to spend more money, as prices of hardware are higher.

NOTICE: these are imaginary numbers of course, and I’m not saying this would happen if governments introduce laws or if piracy stops. Just trying to explain that we cannot just look at one factor and forget everything else. I will be slowly be reaching towards the conclusions of this article. Read further.

Stopping piracy, might mean loss to other industries…
Then there’s also the DamnItWorld.

In DamnItWorld, things are bit different. DamnItWorld was exactly like NormalWorld, but then a new way to punish piracy caused the following change in the population:

  • Since Angry Parrot Lovers (they were like Parrot Lovers except they really had no intention of buying never any software) were no longer getting software free, and had no intention to get faster hardware (since they could no longer brag about how they saw in their goddamn expensive home cinema all the newest ripped full hd quality movies). These people had no absolutely any reason to continue purchasing better computers. They weren’t going to buy software anyway, so they stopped buying hardware too. Instead, they took their fishing gear and started buying ships. In DamnItWorld, the ship industry gets 2 billion
  • Good Citizens still spend 1 billion to hardware and 1 billion to software, but they are using worse computers than their neighbours (since computer technology is not profitable here, so no much improvements are being made) and since computers are shitty, their games also have worse looking graphics than in the neighbour countries (that might be a good thing though).
  • Software industry here uses 0.5 billion to buy from hardware, but gets crappy quality computers. Software industry is blaming hardware industry for high costs, hardware industry is blaming software industry for crappy quality products – and they both are whining that ship industry should be taxed so that some money would go into technological research which would help technological progress.

DamnItWorld has 1.5 billion hardware, 0.5 billion software and 2 billion ship industry. Tons of ex-software people nowadays manufacture ships.

Then there’s the LetsSavePaperWorld where people store 2 billion worth of paper under their pillows, hoping that after 30 years, somebody will be willing to buy that paper with some good price. Like, when for example all trees have been cut and there’s shortage of toilet paper. Then those might come handy.

The point
What I’m trying to show you here, that stating something like “movie industry is losing 1 billion or 10 000 jobs thanks to software piracy” also means that some other industries have those 10 000 jobs. (Since movie industry is losing, it means there’s buying power).

If movie industry arguments that stopping online piracy creates jobs, that indeed is true. It sure creates jobs to the software industry. What they fail to point out, that jobs are lost from some other industry.

It works globally too: sure, if random Finnish person (not that we honest citizens pirate, but for the argument, let’s say we do) pirates your US movies and shares it freely here, the US movie industry suffers (compared to situation where Finn would have spent 500 eur to buy stuff). But what the movie industry fails to notice is that the nasty imaginary Finnish pirate is buying your TV electronics that helps your TV industry. If our imaginary Finnish parrot lover is forced to “spend money to US movie industry” or “spend money to US tv industry” (as you see, we like your industries), then to US as a nation, it’s quite irrelevant. Finn is willing to spend 500 eur to your country, and you can choose which industry (tv or movies) gets that money. That Finn is too lazy to work more, so he won’t have more than the 500 eur to spend anyway. That’s all there is for you. And if you cut the piracy option, our imaginary pirate just might start go build ships instead – and then the US movie and tv industry is actually getting 0 eur.

And it works locally too, here’s an example:

If our Regular Joe american is spending 500 dollars yearly on hardware, 0 dollars yearly on software and 500 dollars yearly on shoes – and now is forced to buy software (since movie industry is losing), it means that Joe will spend 500 dollars yearly on hardware, 500 on software and 0 dollars on shoes. So yes, software industry wins, but shoe industry loses.

(Unless of course Joe takes another job, gets +500 dollars to spend on shoes too yearly, and then receives burnout at the age of 29 – then all other industries win, and Joe’s health suffers.)

So, shouldn’t we all become pirates! That way everybody wins, right?!
As said, this is a matter of balance. If everybody would be pirates and nobody would spend a dime in software industry, that industry would die.

If nobody would spend a dime in software industry, then it would mean that other industries win and software industry loses. If software industry dies totally, then it might lead to a scenario where hardware industry gets taxed to support software industry. Or, it might mean that after everybody stopped making software, nobody is buying any more hardware and we are all making ships.

The key point here is that, piracy is not just about “what is wrong and what is right”. This is a matter of allocation of resources.

What do we want to support?

  • Hardware makers?
  • Software makers?
  • Ship industry?

… or health care, or parrot food, or wood leg industry or what. And of course we must remember that nowadays the different industries are so connected that it’s quite damn tough to say how things really affect. For example, if you like this article so much that you go and order my $1 ludum dare mini game thing from year 2010, the following happens:

  • Transaction handler industry receives their share of that dollar
  • I get my share of that dollar
  • Indirectly, Finnish government benefits from that dollar too, as I pay taxes
  • And as my taxes support public health care, there’s some finnish hospital worker who gets his share of this transaction (or the tax money can be used to support roads building or library, or whatever they might do with it)
  • Website server bandwidth thingy receives their share indirectly (as I need to pay that too)

And that’s at the expense of your dollar, which you could use to buy for example sweet cold drink.

It’s your call.

The final point
Please notice that all these numbers are fictional. I think there’s no person living in this planet who can accurately draw the flow of money in gaming/movie industry – and all connected industries. This doesn’t mean it would be irrelevant either. This simply means that “cutting piracy” has effects that affect various industries and arguments about “lost jobs” are shaky at most. I find this sort of legislation quite dangerous to be honest.

If there’s pirates, then there’s more support for example to hardware industry (or any other non-software industry for that matter, since pirates have more money left to spend on hardware, rest of us spent it on software you know). If we stop pirates, then they might take their money to some other industry. Or, if they are forced to buy software, then it means all those *other* industries suffer (like the drink industry which didn’t get your dollar when you chose to buy my game).

I wouldn’t be suprised to see more taxing of “industries that do well” to “support those industries that do poorer”, which practically would mean that we got rid of pirates yes, but thanks to taxation, things are (in industry scale) exactly the way they were before.

And after all, we are talking about entertainment industry here. There are much more important jobs in the world than making games or movies. Firemen, police, mental care, teachers, doctors, nurses, child care… all these are important industries.

I’m not saying that it’s somehow acceptable that certain individuals (or groups) have taken the right to share some one else’s invention without owners permission. Telling “it’s good for all” is simply not true, since it forgets the creator.

I don’t have no more so strong opinion on piracy, whether it’s right or wrong. I do not like the idea of government introducing laws and regulations into this industry. I do think that old copyright ideas might not be suitable anymore, but I do also think inventors should not be forgotten when we praise how good sharing of culture is.

I’m not fan of piracy, but stopping piracy is bit like fighting against windmills – and there’s some indirect benefits from piracy.

I think in the end, it’s an individual choice on how we respect each others effort, and how we balance everything. If we all support software industry, other industries suffer… which also makes software industry suffer (since there’s no good hardware). If we all support hardware industry, then software industry suffers (and then there’s no good software). If too many people join the pirate bandwagon, if too many think “I have the right to do this, as I support hardware industry – I let others support software”, then software industry will be facing bad times. It can mean poorer quality, or bigger lawsuits or other bad things.

I feel that as a person who supports both hardware and software industry – it would be equally nice if those pirates who do not support software industry, would re-consider if they too would like to have some direct support to software industry.

How do you vote?
Every citizen who spends their money to hardware and not on software is directly hoping of voting the following:

  • Hardware quality must get better, therefore I support your industry!
  • Software quality (and all other industries) can suffer!

And every citizen who spends their money on software and not hardware, is directly hoping of voting:

  • Software quality must get better, therefore I support you!
  • Hardware quality (and all other industries) can suffer!

By “hardware quality” I here mean “faster CPU, better gfx card, more memory, faster memory, better screens, etc”. By “software quality” I mean for example “better graphics, better gameplay, better innovations”.

To put other way around: those nasty pirates who don’t indirectly support software industry, gladly support hardware industry – which helps us makers of software industry too, indirectly (they help get cheaper computers, which means you and me pay less for CPUs).

I’m not saying this makes piracy legal or good in absolute sense. As noted earlier, if nobody supports software industry, software industry suffers.

Note to pirates who argue that “they pirate just because want better service”. There’s better way to get better service than boycott. It happens this way. (1) Buy stuff and (2) tell what you want. Sure, boycott might work too, but as a creator I know It’s easier to do better services when you have some money to fund the development of better service.

Naturally, this is only the direct support. As pointed out earlier, direct support to software industry might mean indirect support to various other industries. And of course directly hoping of voting here might not mean better quality products. For example, the maker of hardware might keep the profits and buy ships instead. That’s why you can only hope your money goes to making of better products. Long-term, I think it’s pretty safe to say that “industries that receive support tends to grow”, so your hopes might come true)

We need balance, and perhaps bit more respect towards each others work.

What is certain, that we hell sure should have much more respect for people who do some actual work (and not just watch movies or code magic numbers).