Call of Duty series developer Infinity Ward has joined a growing list of companies to cite piracy as one of the reasons for the PC's fall from grace as a gaming platform. As Shacknews reports, the company's Community Relations Manager—who calls himself Fourzerotwo—has posted on his blog to express his amazement at the number of people who have pirated his studio's latest title, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare. Prefacing his comment by the heading, "They Wonder Why People Don't Make PC Games Any More," Fourzerotwo explains:
On another PC related note, we pulled some disturbing numbers this past week about the amount of PC players currently playing Multiplayer (which was fantastic). What wasn't fantastic was the percentage of those numbers who were playing on stolen copies of the game on stolen / cracked CD keys of pirated copies (and that was only people playing online).
Not sure if I can share the exact numbers or percentage of PC players with you, but I'll check and see; if I can I'll update with them. As the amount of people who pirate PC games is astounding. It blows me away at the amount of people willing to steal games (or anything) simply because it's not physical or it's on the safety of the internet to do.
Last year, both Epic Games and id Software said they were dragged into console development as a result of PC piracy. Former Ritual Entertainment QA Manager Michael Russell told Shacknews in an interview two years ago that he had seen studios close and people "lose their homes" as a result of piracy. Russell, too, named piracy as one of the reasons PC game developers were moving to consoles.
Luckily for the folks at Infinity Ward, piracy didn't stop the PC version of Call of Duty 4 from hitting the number-one spot on the PC game charts earlier this month. According to the NPD numbers, CoD 4 pushed Blizzard's ever-popular World of Warcraft to the number-two spot and EA's The Sims 2 Deluxe into third place.