April 5, 2009

App Pirates

As I feared, piracy is fairly rampant with iPhone/iPod Touch apps. Last night I received an email for Artsiness technical support requesting help with my well-received port of Mystery House. I put in a bit of code to detect when the App is being played illegally. I let the game play regularly for a few turns, then it nefariously ends prematurely with a note prodding the user to actually purchase the game. The user clearly ran into that situation and wrote to ask why it happens. Perhaps I should have made the end-game notice a little more obvious. But either way, I find it interesting that someone will both take the game without paying for it and try to get support from the author.

It provides me some satisfaction that the piracy-detection code is doing its job. It looks like I will be adding that in to all future products.