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How To Save Computer Games Without Piracy

Suddenly, The Crew disappeared. Ubisoft closed the racing game in April 2024 with only a few months’ notice. This happens frequently as publishers end games. Gamers aim to stop this with the “Stop Killing Games” campaign led by YouTuber Ross Scott since April 2024. It’s not just about The Crew anymore, but about the broader principle.

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If Stop Killing Games succeeds, developers would be required to keep their games available longer and possibly release them as open-source after shutdowns, allowing the community to maintain them. Is this a major challenge or just wishful thinking?

The Crew Was the Last Straw

Although The Crew sparked the campaign, it’s not unique for games to be entirely or partially shut down. For instance, in 2018, Sony ended Gran Turismo 6’s multiplayer after just five years, disabling additional content downloads.

How To Save Computer Games Without Piracy (1)

In late 2018, Epic Games shut down its MOBA Paragon after four years, and the VR game Space Junkies ended after three years. Developers also abandoned the zombie game The Days Before after just four days.

Compared to these examples, The Crew is relatively old. By the end of March 2024, the racing through a miniaturized USA came to an end. While not exceptionally old, the game lasted nearly ten years.

Patrick Breyer, still serving in the EU Parliament for the Pirate Party, has championed the issue at a European level. This is crucial since Ubisoft, the focal company of the campaign, is based in France. He says:

“The Crew was the straw that broke the camel’s back when it came to arbitrary manufacturer behavior ,”

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