We all know by now how some Russians accidently stumbled upon a DRM-free executable within the DOOM game files, which allows anyone with the same copy of the game files to run DOOM without a license.
This goes against the whole idea of protecting their game, as there’s bulky anti-piracy software integrated to protect and deflect scurvy pirates. But this executable bypasses all of that, and in a way makes all the anti-piracy efforts by Bethesda meaningless.
Why do you think this is a marketing trick?
Well, games get pirated one way or another. It takes time, but they always get cracked. People who don’t like piracy will not download cracks, while pirates will always wait to get their hands on the free booty, no matter how long it’d take.
So, Bethesda, knowing that the non-pirates have all pre-ordered the game, and that the rest will buy it eventually, they used this opportunity for extra publicity to grab as many people on board for this fresh and exciting, new game.
The Coronavirus has grounded the whole world into their houses, and if this piracy leads to more publicity about the game, as well as more people playing it, it’s bound to increase the revenue anyways.
We must also remember that DOOM Eternal has a multiplayer aspect, which cannot be accessed with an illicit copy, therefore, if those with the cracked game enjoy it a hell of a lot, they’re bound to just buy it in order to play multiplayer. I’ve heard it’s quite crazy, on a level of L4D (Left 4 Dead) craziness of pitless insanity.
Ask yourself, have they truly lost anything to this… mistake? People had already bought the game, while pirates wouldn’t have bought the game anyways. Also, you have whole teams checking the files and preparing everything into perfection.
Doing this is free marketing, and a way to seduce illicit owners into buying it for the multiplayer aspect. It just smells like Elon Musk’s Cybertruck fiasco.
And what better way than doing it during times of home isolation and mass fear of the outside.