Pirate Queen: Meet FitGirl, a Russian Repacker

 Developers, according to FitGirl, should also learn how to properly compress their games.

Pirate Queen: Meet FitGirl, a Russian Repacker

It is generally accepted that men are usually involved in computer piracy in general and repacking in particular. However, there is at least one repacker in the industry that could be mistaken for a woman: FitGirl, the man with the avatar from Amelie.

If you went to the CrackWatch subreddit, you probably saw FitGirl's repack notifications more than once or twice. The works of the Russian repaker are of a certain popularity, it is considered that they are of a high level of quality.

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The TorrentFreak team contacted FitGirl - for the sake of simplicity, we will consider the repaker a girl - and asked them to talk about their work and the "creative path". Here is the most interesting part of her story .

About the beginning of the path

FitGirl's first experiments with data compression began in 2012. Then she began to collect a personal collection of content and used 7-Zip. FitGirl considered it the best compression tool at the time.

Putting together the collection, FitGirl found that the repacks found on the trackers took up much less space than what she was able to compress. Curious, she decided to forget about 7-Zip and began experimenting with data compression on her own. After a while FitGirl managed to achieve satisfactory results.

Outwardly, my first repack was very similar to those that I am doing now, but inside it was just disgusting. Slow boot, slow install, all that stuff. But I quickly corrected all the shortcomings and started doing repacks almost every day.



About publishing repacks

At first, all repacks were intended for personal use only. However, then FitGirl noticed that some of her works are no longer in size, but smaller than repackages, laid out in the open access.

FitGirl decided to publish some of its repacks on trackers and see what happens. She is a native of Russia, so she decided to start with local resources. The first was the Geometry Wars 3 repack: the game distribution was compressed from 250 megabytes to 69 megabytes.

About motivation and technical challenge

Over the years, FitGirl has made about one and a half thousand repacks and created a whole fan community around itself. She does not directly deal with hacking: all content for compression is taken from a private tracker.

Then the fun begins. FitGirl's task is to pack the data as efficiently as possible by reducing the size of the distribution. Sometimes it's pretty easy, sometimes it's not.

As a rule, creating a repack is a very simple matter. Most of the games now run either on Unity or on the Unreal Engine, the data of both engines is compressed without any problems. The time it takes depends only on the size of the game: it can be an hour or a whole day.


Working with closed engines is much more interesting. Apparently, the hardest and most interesting of all FitGirl is working with the projects of Rockstar Games.

I like working with non-standard or rare engines: what I love most is when it gets difficult with compression. For example, I reworked the GTA 5 repack five or six times, each time improving either the compression ratio or the installation time.

In this regard, Red Read Redemption 2 is one of the most difficult games that I have come across. Unfortunately, it still hasn't been cracked, so I can't show what worked for me.


About legal problems

FitGirl never had them. Publishers and developers regularly seek to remove certain releases from trackers, but they have never contacted FitGirl directly.

About developers and competitors

There aren't that many people working in the repackaging industry - FitGirl misses the competition and the challenges it entails. But it is much sadder that developers are also not keen on compressing their distributions. 

Hire just one person who understands compression and make it so that your games can be updated with regular patches, without completely rebuilding the entire distribution.

Unreal Engine, for example, already supports this kind of patching, but 99% of developers just don't use this feature. Instead, they rebuild the entire distribution over and over again, and then Steam players are forced to download another 50 gigabyte update.

Well, seriously, you have all the tools, show a little love for the players - after all, they pay you.


So is FitGirl a girl after all?

We do not know. 

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