An error message has been added to Source sandbox game Garry's Mod
, allowing the developers to catch pirates.
The message only displays when pirated copies of the game are booted up, and tells the user that it is "Unable to shade polygon normals." It also follows up with the users 64-bit Steam ID.
Users with this issue are then being coaxed onto the official Garry's Mod
forums to post about the problem along with their Steam ID. The developers are banning the pirates from the forums, and using Steam IDs to lock them out of the pirated version of the game.
Garry Newman, designer of Garry's Mod
, revealed via Twitter
, "Just enabled this error in GMod today. It happens when you pirated it. Having fun watching people complain."
When asked why such measures have been taken, he responded, "I don't think the error isn't [sic] going to boost GMod
sales. I just like to give people that paid something to be smug about."
He continued, "Nothing is ever going to stop piracy, I'm just having fun at the pirates' expense."
Originally a free Half-Life 2
mod, Garry's Mod
started being sold via Valve's Steam digital distribution system in 2006, although it still requires the user to own another Source game to run, such as Half-Life 2
or Team Fortress 2