Not at all defending piracy of games. But here’s an alternative view/reason why someone might not want to pay.
For example in my country (India), a couple of years ago Google play wouldn’t even let me add/accept my debit card because it only accepted credit cards because financial regulations here would allow only transactions that were made from cards that were activated for International payments.
Then debit cards started getting accepted but again International payment clause put up hurdles again.
Buying Gift cards wasn’t even an option. Finally 2 years ago, Google started selling physical gift cards through an ecom site. That’s how i bought my first game. Still I had to wait for delivery of card.
Now I have to go to an Ecom app buy an online gift card, Then… i go to playstore & enter the code to get the balance to make transactions.
Is getting International payments activated an option on my debit card? Definitely! But that again has it’s own problems & drawn out process.
Here, i was perfectly willing & capable to pay for games but financial regualtion made it infinitely more difficult. Still it’s putting up difficulties. (like i can only subscribe netflix through Google play. Which, again starts the process of buying gift cards )
Still, i agree, Most people are perfectly capable of purchasing CoG but they aren’t willing.
As for putting safeguards in place, Guys, major game studios have tried that approach with introduction of DRM at the cost of thousands of dollars. Gamers still managed to hack & put it out on torrent sites for general consumption.
Along with sending out thousands of DMCA takedown notices to no avail.
What chance does HG/CoG have? (Granted, here pirates are not dedicated but, what’s stopping them?)
I commend the author here for his straight forward approach. I will always buy CoG games from playstore & support the authors in whatever way i can.