Polish developer CD Projekt RED is giving software pirates the opportunity to update and play The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt just like people who bought the game – but it’s also encouraging them to pay for a copy, too.
It’s not playable yet – both the pirated version and the legitimate copies are locked until the official release date of May 19, but it seems The Witcher 3 is already available in certain dark corners of the internet.
Rather than threatening the pirates, panicking or even getting particularly upset, the developer has announced that all copies of the game – legitimate or no – will be given the same Day One patch, promising “numerous fixes and an exe file”.
An unnamed CDPR developer posted to a “well-known torrent website” (typos intact):
On May the 19th CDPR will release a 1.01 path that will contain numerous fixes and an exe file. This file will be available from the Galaxy Client (need not login/sign up juts have the client up and running with preload files imported). Alternatively, you can download the patch from play.thewitcher3.com and just run it.
This will be available to everybody, not just people who bought the game.
The anonymous dev goes on to explain the perks of actually paying for the game, acknowledging that pirates “probably don’t care” that the purchase would go towards developer salaries.
However, something that gamers might care about: Legitimate, purchased copies of the game also receive “16 free DLCs”, including new quest lines, item sets and game modes – content that will be unavailable in pirated versions.
The game costs 32$ on GOG.com. And for the 32$ you will get so much gaming content it will boggle your mind. Seriously. I am involved in the development process and me, as well as hundreds of people who have literally worked their asses off for the last couple of months (some serious overtime came into make Witcher 3), and I am telling you: this ain’t an 8-hour corridor stunt for 60 bucks. This is a game as huge as Skyrim itself, perhaps even bigger.
The Witcher 3 is also available on Steam and Origin as well as GOG.com – and it’s also on consoles including Xbox One and PlayStation 4. You won’t be able to play until May 19, no matter which platform you get it on, but if you buy now, you can pre-load and hit the ground running.