NieR, far, wherever pirates are – community backlash after mod includes piracy check

While praised as a 2017 sleeper hit, PC version of Nier: Automata has been plagued with a plethora of technical issues. From low framerate, frequent crashes, camera control problems to a bug that that prevented the game from being run in native resolutions. Fortunately, as with most things PC, modders came to the rescue.

Nier Automata Fishing
PC version of NieR: Automata has had problems since its inception. None of them are in this picture.

Kaldaien – the modder known for his 60fps mods for Batman: Arkham Knight, Final Fantasy X/X-2, Tales of Zestiria, and others – has released a FAR (Fix Automata Resolution) mod for Nier: Automata. Despite the name, his mod fixes a truckload of Nier’s bugs, not just the resolution, and has been seen as something Nier needed to achieve its apex on the PC market.

And well, then the controversy struck. The mod has been getting some negative attention due to the fact it checks if the game copy it modifies is legal or not. FAR mods own EULA states that the use of the software is granted “on the condition that any products being modified have been licensed to you under the terms and conditions set forth by their respective copyright holders”. Needless to say, this ruffled quite a few feathers. Gamers came out in droves to question why the mod even needs to make a piracy check and to condemn Kaldaien for the “unnecessary” hurdle to the usability of the mod.

The situation wasn’t helped by the modder’s snarky attitude. He offered the following solutions to people who failed his software authenticity check:

“1. Uninstall the mod and accept that you’re not entitled to everything in this world and acting like a giant baby because you don’t get your way is immature.2.Obtain a modified version from someone else who condones piracy and who can take responsibility for how their modification is used.”

That went over as well as you’d expect: in the ensuing argument Kaldaien himself was banned from posting on Steam forums because of his completely unapologetic, or arguably hostile, attitude. Kaldaien claims that the check has nothing to do with his own personal views on piracy, he just didn’t want to be liable for the “asset injection of copyrighted material”. Despite this, he has released an older version of the mod that would work without the copyright check.

In the meantime, he has moved his mod over to Github, where he’ll continue to host all future documentation and he has opened a new Steam Community thread to discuss his mod.

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