Zeno Clash developer asks for support

In a PC gaming world filled with DRM and CD key checks, Zeno Clash, a new first person shooter/fighting hybrid from independent gaming development studio ACE team, has taken a new approach.

Appearing on a popular torrent tracker site, Carlos Bordeu, asked all the would be pirates to support his game as this is the only way his game and his company can survive an an independent studio:

I'm one of the developers of Zeno Clash. I would appreciate you read this if you are about to download this file.

Zeno Clash is an independently funded game by a very small and sacrificed group of people. The only way in which we can continue making games like this (or a sequel) is to have good sales.

I am aware that at this moment there is still no demo of the game, but we are working on one which will be available soon.

We cannot do anything to stop piracy of the game (and honestly don't intend to do so) but if you are downloading because you wish to try before you buy, I would ask that you purchase the game (and support the independent game development scene) if you enjoy it. We plan on updating Zeno Clash with DLC and continuing support for the game long after it's release.

Thanks for taking the time to read this... hopefully it will make a difference.

Carlos Bordeu
ACE Team

The comment was met with a lot of respect, and a lot of would be pirates said that they would support the studio and purchase the game. And why not?

The game so far has received an impressive 83 percentile rating on Metacritic and can be purchased on Steam for $20. Perhaps human decency and just asking for support is the next best DRM tool against pirates.

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For 20 dollars this game is well worth the price and a good 3-5 hours of your time depending on how much you rush it. Use of HL2 graphics and interesting environments and the likes.

Most pirates and I do mean most are on the poor end of the string so don't be expecting the whole bunch to be actually purchasing anything still if they can still get it for free... (relating possible Stardock game). I personally have beaten the game already and would imo recommend this very unique piece (not that I would buy it still :/) art.

I heard about this game a couple of months back and thinking that it looked pretty good, I went and ordered it on Steam... Haven't got round to downloading and installing it yet, but I certainly will soon...

And how many of those d/l'ers who said on the torrent site that they will purchase the game WILL ACTUALLY buy the game?

And btw, I saw the game on TV last week, looks very interesting.

I'm all for human decency, but why can't it go both ways? I think it smacks of hypocrisy (and is a dangerous precedent to set) if I, as a consumer and "would-be pirate," only feel compelled to support a developer if first they implore me not to illegally download their title.

I absolutely agree with the assertion of the gaming community that developers should not treat their customers as pirates first, but I also think that on the other side of the coin us consumers should not treat all developers as greedy, impersonal, cold-hearted robots right off the bat (and as an excuse for piracy).

Ideally, the support being asked for in Carlos' letter should be given by default by the community, until such time as the ACE Team is revealed to in fact be a cabal of robotic louses... at which point "sticking it to The Man" and downloading every title past and future may be a slightly more justifiable course of action.