updated 06:50 pm EDT, Wed July 23, 2014
Publisher activates anti-piracy measures after thousands of plays turn up online
It turns out that winning an early access to game isn't enough to satisfy every fan, as mobile developer Gameloft recently learned. In a contest that gave fans access to Modern Combat 5: Blackout before its expected July 24 release date, one of the lucky winners decided to crack the game and upload it for illegal distribution. Afterward, thousands of players turned up in the game before its release on Android, iOS and Windows 8 devices.
Modern Combat 5 is the latest first-person shooter from Gameloft. While many mobile games can be burdened by in-game purchases and free-to-play offerings, Modern Combat 5 takes a typical game approach. Gameloft offers the title as a full version game for only $7 - but even this and the early access was not enough to thwart piracy.
Polygon first reported on the pirated copy of Modern Combat 5, indicating that a cracked iOS copy was uploaded to "multiple torrenting websites" during the weekend. As one can expect, the publisher wasn't happy about the development. Gameloft's Community Manager Florian Weber voiced his disapproval of the situation on the Modern Combat 4 Facebook page.
"As you can imagine I am really pissed off," said Weber. "To anybody who got MC5 already, shame on you! We are making games for you and all you can do is pirate them?" Weber added after that anyone he spoke with that showed evidence they had the game would be banned.
So Gameloft did a contest to win an early copy of MC5, and one of the winners cracked and uploaded it. Now there's 1000's of players online.- Eli Hodapp (@hodapp) July 20, 2014
Information on the cracked copies began circling after Touch Arcade's Eli Hodapp took to Twitter over the mass of players showing up in the game before its official release. The publisher gave an official statement to Polygon, stating that it took steps to lock out the pirated copies of the shooter. Gameloft activated the anti-piracy measures, rendering the illegal copies playing the game "incapacitated."
"Those who used this pirated version of the game just need to wait for the official game release which is on Thursday July 24. We will continue to stay alert and respond adequately to all hacking attempts," said Gameloft. Modern Combat 5: Blackout appears to be available now, a day early, on Google Play. However, the Windows 8 and iOS versions still appear to be missing from their respective store fronts.