We’ve chronicled several different approaches that game developers are taking to curb piracy such as releasing free-to-play titles with in-game purchases or requiring a game have an always-on connection but Greenheart Games’ recent approach with Game Dev Tycoon is by far the most ironic I have seen to date.

Game Dev Tycoon is a business simulator that allows gamers to relive the history of the gaming industry by starting a video game development company in the 1980s. Players are tasked with creating best selling games, researching new technologies and inventing new types of games – all in an effort to become the market leader and gain fans worldwide. Sounds like a lot of fun, right?

I’m sure it is… unless you happened to torrent a “pirated” version of the game. If you’re one of the 90+ percent of players that are using a cracked version, get ready to experience an ironic twist. Once you progress a bit and release a few hit titles, you’ll be met with a sales report that points out the dangers of piracy and how companies will go out of business if gamers don’t pay for their games. It’s all downhill from here as your bank accounts slowly drain and you’re forced into bankruptcy.

What Greenheart Games did was release a “cracked” version of the title before pirates could do so. This special version contains the “pirate” bug as well as a phone-home anonymous usage code. The company was hoping to steer pirates toward paying for a copy but if the following anonymous complaint is any indication, some are totally clueless.

“Why are there so many people that pirate? It ruins me! I had like 5m and then people suddenly started pirating everything I made, even if I got really good ratings (that I usually get). Not fair.”