Piracy Figures Musing

The Internet is 80% Porn.
1 in 4 people will suffer a mental health problem during their lifetime.
9 out of 10 cats prefer a particular brand of food.
 
There are so many downright false statistics out there that when various reports come out claiming that x% of console or pc systems have run illegal software, I don't really take it in. Are there really that many people with modded consoles? In todays supposedly online world, it just doesn't seem it would be that attractive to do.
 
I would also have to assume that the games industry is taking a leaf out of the film and music industry's handbook. Complain, alot. I mean there some research out there that suggests that the very people that download films and music are the very same people that spend alot of money on those products. A try before you buy maybe? I don't know and I think that research wise, it would be difficult to cover and it's early days.
 
Speaking of research, where do they come up with these statistics? If you just go around asking people they'll surely be a percentage that lie? I suppose with enough work you could account for that within a certain margin of error... I think so anyway.
 
So ok let's assume that you can devise some clever set of surveys that establish a fairly reliable percentage of users buy illegal software. So the next step, how on earth do you work out how much? And once you do come up with a figure for how many titles they might on average, obtain from an unofficial source, can you truely put a cash amount to that that reflects lost income? Surely at least some of those titles would never have been bought. Should they really be included?
 
All that aside I never fail to be stunned at the amount of people I know that own illegal games. These people are not hardened warez dudez. They're the twin set and pearls brigade in sensible jobs, married with children. They couldn't work out how to download a pirate film for love nor money, they might not have even owned a DVD player for very long and look at you all confused if you say "Blueray".
 
In short, these are not 'core gamers'. I don't know, maybe the hardcore enjoy owning the product too much to pirate? They'll take all the night-vision goggles you can sell and yelp with glee at the idea of thrusting their arm into a pip-boy.  I think that the current illegal games market is too complicated for any of the current reports of research to really explain. Maybe it does begin with people just enjoying something for nothing, but with retail prices climbing are the publishers helping that? I'm not convinced we'll know any time soon how prevalent it really is.

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I was right, and you were all wrong. ME1 was always bad.

I feel like I've returned from the wilderness. My clothes drab from bleaching under the desert sun. My mouth cracked and dry. I emerge from the seemingly never ending vastness of the unforgiving wastes and I can't believe my ears. People have put Mass Effect 1 back into their machines to remind/compare and lo... it was bad.
It was always that bad you silly, silly people. You just weren't paying attention. I've rarely seen such texture popping, the Mako was a joke they forgot to fix. But mostly, mostly the lies. Ohhhh the lies! Can no one remember all the stuff they said would be in the game that just never appeared? And my god. Running through the same base time after time after time. Don't even get me started on the AI, in fact I think I'm going to refuse to ever reffer to that as AI ever again. It was more like a two line script. See enemy. Run to enemy. Genius.
It always was that bad. Welcome to the real world.

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The Giant Bomb Effect

I've been reviewing the last year, as is almost compulsory around this time, and how could I not look back on my years worth of game purchases when trying to select my top ten games? 
All this retrospect has made me wonder something about Giant Bomb itself. Or rather the effect it has on me. So I fully confess that I have bought a game purely because of something posted by one of the GB crew. Not only that but I know that it's not just me effected in this way. Usually with gaming sites I'll read the odd preview of a game I'm interested in and maybe look at review scores and skim the text itself (I find that some sites reveal key moments in games). Yes this can influence my gaming purchases but I can't remember reading about a game I'd not heard of, and then buying it as a result.
So I have to wonder what it is about Giant Bomb that does this? And what percentage of it's readers are afflicted?

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