High piracy rates on Android forced Madfinger to make its Dead Trigger app free-to-play, the studio has claimed.
Speaking to PocketGamer, the Shadow Gun developer's marketing manager Anna Porizkova said that piracy rates on the zombie shooter were as high as 80 per cent.
She also claimed that some countries saw that number rise to 99 per cent.
Porizkova added that she understood why many customers were disappointed with the move, having already paid $1 for the game, but hoped users would feel early access to the title was worth the money.
“We absolutely understand that people are angry because they paid for something that is now for free,” she said.
“We understand that it could seem unfair to someone. On the other hand, we just hope that those people might consider getting Dead Trigger three weeks earlier to be worth one buck.
“We don't know why we would have announced the price drop in advance. No developer does it. That's all."
Porizkova also revealed that piracy for the developer’s hit title Shadowgun was even higher than it had been for Dead Trigger, but the title’s initial $8 price meant it had no effective way to defend against it.