"What is the square root of a fish?" the message at the end of the Skullgirls single-player campaign asked. "Now I'm sad." Perhaps thinking he'd discovered some kind of oddball Easter egg, player Dan Hibiki took to Twitter to ask what it meant. But the answer, he was dismayed to learn, was that it meant he'd pirated the game.
@SaikyoChamp Oh that? It means you should probably buy the game instead of pirate it. o:)— Skullgirls (@Skullgirls) July 8, 2014
This is the point at which you might expect the conversation to come to a screeching halt, or perhaps spin off into a whirlwind of acrimony. Instead, Hibiki claimed he'd already purchased Skullgirls for the PlayStation 3 and wanted to do a "trybeforeyoubuy thing" with the PC version. He was actually planning to buy it that very day, he added, but GameStop doesn't offer it online and it's dangerous outside, or something.
@SaikyoChamp It's all good, man. Well... I mean, it isn't really, but I get it. Just try to do the right thing eventually.— Skullgirls (@Skullgirls) July 8, 2014
The conversation went back and forth a bit more—Hibiki asked if the developers planned to implement "1PvCPU or CPUvCPU," and got a quick lesson on why even seemingly simple tasks like that aren't cheap undertakings—before others jumped in to support the way Skullgirls handled the situation and give Hibiki some heat for pirating the game. But in the end, it all worked out for everyone: Hibiki tweeted earlier today that a "great fan" had donated a legitimate copy of the game to him on Steam: Not exactly the same as making a sale, but better than nothing.
Remember, kids: don't steal your games.