“Pirate…” Slay The Princess game, “if $ is an issue,” says Developer

By Todd Russell Jan1,2024

A creative way to kick off the new year with fireworks going off in the distance: Happy New Year 2024!

An unusual, and perhaps incredible smart, savvy 2024 marketing strategy from the developer of their 2023 visual novel game, Slay The Princess (Steam): if you can’t afford the game, then go ahead and pirate a copy, then buy a copy later “if you liked it.” From the developer’s Twitter/X:

(And if $ is an issue, pirate it and buy a copy later when you have money if you liked it!)

Black Tabby Games / X (twitter.com)

Correcting grammar aside, since “$” (dollars) pluralized should read “And if $ are an issue” (sorry, editor hat), this developer quote is refreshing.

Pirating any new Steam game purchase is essentially unnecessary when anybody can buy any new game, try it within two weeks of purchase for up to two hours and if you don’t like it, then ask for a refund. The game costs $16.19, at 10% off on the Steam Winter Sale that ends January 4, 2024. It’s not like it’s a AAA game pricing, but hey, still gotta dig the developer’s panache.

Visual novels are a tough niche for this author, gaming-wise. Not one I’m typically drawn to, but the marketing prowess is making me curious to check it out.

Slay the Princess‘ positive stance towards piracy comes as the game has already seen high praise just over two months following its launch. Slay the Princess is one of 2023’s highest-rated games on review aggregate site OpenCritic, with an impressive score of 90 putting it alongside smash hits like Spider-Man 2 and Dave the DiverSlay the Princess has also seen several nominations from smaller awards shows, winning “Best Indie RPG” at streaming organization OTK’s 2023 awards.

The Dev of One of 2023’s Highest-Rated New Games Says Players Should Pirate It If They Can’t Afford It (gamerant.com)

Awards are nice for the dev’s ego but am more impressed by the confidence of telling gamers to pirate it. This sounds so much better than the disdain from Starfield developers (Starfield Developer gets Defensive with Players, and yes, it is Offensive)

What about you? Does this type of game marketing appeal to you? Is it refreshing in a world of buy, buy, buy, try, try, try? In a world where gamers are literally drowning from the tide of neverending games to play?

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