CD Projekt has taken a grass-roots approach to combating piracy by asking its customers to raise awareness of the economic dangers of illicit filesharing.
The new method to tackle piracy is a volte-face from its short-lived and notorious process of issuing legal threats.
In December the Witcher developer was found to be contacting people who were believed to be playing pirated copies of its games. In at least one case, the Polish group sought $1,230 from an individual alleged to be playing pirated material.
But in an open letter to its community, issued this week, CD Projekt promised it will immediately cease identifying and contacting pirates.
“We value our fans, our supporters, and our community too highly to take the chance that we might ever falsely accuse even one individual,” the group said.
“We were sorry to see that many gamers felt that our actions didn’t respect the faith that they have put into CD Projekt. Our fans always have been and remain our greatest concern, and we pride ourselves on the fact that you all know that we listen to you and take your opinions to heart.”
CD Projekt said its position on piracy is unchanged, however.
“Let’s make this clear: we don’t support piracy,” said the studio’s co-founder Marcin Iwinski.
“It hurts us, the developers. It hurts the industry as a whole. Though we are staunch opponents of DRM because we don’t believe it has any effect on reducing piracy, we still do not condone copying games illegally.”
Iwinski (pictured) said the company was “doing our part” in maintaining a relationship with fans, but asked for help in return.
“We’ve heard your concerns, listened to your voices, and we’re responding to them. But you need to help us and do your part: don’t be indifferent to piracy.
“If you see a friend playing an illegal copy of a game, any game, tell your friend that they’re undermining the possible success of the developer who created the very game that they are enjoying.
“Unless you support the developers who make the games you play, unless you pay for those games, we won’t be able to produce new excellent titles for you.”