Ubisoft Removes 'Always On' DRM From New Driver Game; Replaces It With Something Slightly Less Annoying

from the if-you-really-want-to-stick-it-to-the-pirates,-just-stop-making-games dept

As I’m sure many of you tuned into the gamosystem (Now officially a word! Use it for your next startup!) are aware, Ubisoft has a long tradition of irritating the hell out of the very people it wishes to have purchase its games. A short while ago, Ubisoft announced the latest Driver sequel would require players to be handcuffed to a solid internet connection in order to fully utilize its “Always On” DRM.

Of course, an uproar took place and Ubisoft is now attempting to calm its potential customers, as Rock Paper Shotgun reports, by walking back its “always on” DRM, as evidenced by this official statement:

We’ve heard your feedback regarding the permanent internet connection requirement for Driver and have made the decision to no longer include it. So this means that Driver PC gamers will only need to sign in at game launch but can subsequently choose to play the game offline.

“And this improves things how?” RPS’ John Walker asks:

[W]hat Driver’s DRM has been reduced to is almost pointlessly different. Before if your internet connection went down while you played, the game would stop, and it wasn’t possible to play anywhere without an internet connection at all. Now, er, if your internet connection is down you still can’t play, and you still can’t play anywhere without an internet connection.

While this concession makes it slightly less annoying to play Ubisoft’s game, the fact remains that this minor compromise doesn’t alter the general “treat everyone like thieves” principle behind it. If you really want to prevent piracy, rather than please your customers, why not just take your protective measures to the logical conclusion?

Always On is by far and away the most egregiously stupid and unfair DRM to have ever been included with a game… It’s something Ubisoft have boasted, without providing any proof whatsoever, has reduced piracy. While the claim without proof is meaningless, it also ignores the rather larger issue that so would locking the only copy of the game in a concrete block buried beneath the sea reduce piracy. It would also make it even more inconvenient for a paying customer.

Ubisoft may be slowly learning that the public isn’t going to put up with Always On, but it seems deaf to the facts that its DRM does nothing to slow down piracy and everything to annoy its customers. Walker closes with this plea, which could be directed at any purveyor of DRM-laced goods:

But Ubisoft – if you’re genuinely listening to the reaction against your DRM, then please actually hear what’s being said. With DRM that requires an internet connection to launch, every time, you are once again mindlessly and needlessly punishing your legitimate customers in a way that will not affect those with pirated copies. You will, once again, be selling a product with a serious and significant defect, that those who download it for free will not be encountering. There’s no logic or rationale that makes that okay. By requiring an internet connection for launch, on every launch, you punish anyone whose internet isn’t working, who wants to play away from home (on a train, on a plane, on a holiday in Cornwall, at their grandparents’ house, in their barracks…), or who cannot afford a broadband internet connection. It is cruel. It is stupid. It doesn’t work on any level. If you are listening, really listening, then stop this. Stop treating customers like criminals, and start showing respect to those who pay you significant amounts of money for your products.

Once again, if your product can’t outperform the pirated version, your battle against piracy will always be uphill.

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Companies: ubisoft

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Comments on “Ubisoft Removes 'Always On' DRM From New Driver Game; Replaces It With Something Slightly Less Annoying”

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fb39ca4 (profile) says:

Re: Re: A better solution than piracy

The “cracks” used in pirated games should be distributed openly, for anyone to use, without having to search for torrents. Last time I heard, game mods are not copyright infringement. Then they can just apply the patch on their legititmately bought game as a community-made DRM-removal patch.

HothMonster says:

Re: Re: Re: A better solution than piracy

unfortunately cracks violate the DMCA. Including it in a mod could get you sued, also not all games provide the tools or allow modding. But for those that do even though modding is legal circumnavigating the protection software would make your mod illegal, not worth the risk for legitimate modders to risk getting their mod banned/themselves arrested.

It is a shame though because in situations like this im sure some purchasing customers are going to end up getting themselves viruses trying to remove the DRM and make these games more convenient. Being that they are paying customers they are less likely to know the safe channels to get cracks, but i guess that just gives them another reason to hate the publisher who uses DRM.

Mike42 (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Synopsis of these links: Ubisoft said they weren’t going to have the “always on” DRM in this game. People bought it, and it turned out Ubisoft lied.
No reason to believe them about Driver, either.
Also, Steam has been issuing refunds due to the inaccurate statement of Ubisoft.

Wicked business model. We’ll see how well these guys fare.

Jay (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

“We’ll see how well these guys fare.”


Let’s think about all that they don’t do right:

Don’t port games to systems that sorely need them (Scott Pilgrim: The Game)

Always on DRM (Assassin’s Creed, Driver, From Dust)
Customer Service (HAHAHAHAHA!!!)
$10 deal (Splits consumer base into new and used, all games)

Honestly, is there any company that does a better job of saying “I don’t want your service”?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

Steam is not honoring returns.

> Hello,
> A staff member has replied to your question:
> Hello,
> Thank you for contacting Steam Support.
> As with most software products, we do not offer refunds or
> exchanges on games, DLC or in-game items purchased on our
> website or through the Steam Client.
> Please review Section 4 of the Steam Subscriber Agreement
> for more information.
> http://www.steampowered.com/index.php?area=subscriber_agreement
> We will make an exception and refund preorders as long as the
> request is received prior to the release of the game. This
> only applies to preorders purchased from your account, preordered
> titles received or sent through the Steam Trading system
> cannot be refunded.
> Technical support for this title is handled by a third party
> support department – please follow the instructions below to
> contact the support provider to troubleshoot this issue:
> Title: From Dust
> Link: http://support.steampowered.com/kb_article.php?ref=4700-ROSN-2703

HothMonster says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

Its not a guaranteed process.

If you write a nice enough letter, stating that the forum post that turned out to be a lie was crucial to you deciding to purchases it, and link to it, you have a decent shot (it seems). Point to and quote some law that they violated with this false post.

i.e. “?According to the misrepresentation act of 1967 and backed up by the 1986 case of Gordon v Selico (link here), when an UBIsoft employee negligently posted false information on the date of xx/yy/zz at http:whateveritwas.com, I took that to be a factual statement concerning the game and was one of the deciding factors as to my purchase of the game.?”

Use your own words, be clear, concise, factual and above all polite. The main crux of your argument is the false post dont get into how bad the port is. And you have a shot at getting a return, you might have to go back and forth with support a little. (Also valve doesnt hide its employee directory so an email to the right person might help your cause)

Alternatively you could firebomb ubisoft.

HothMonster says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:


Posted Fri August 19 2011 05:35 Hide Post

Originally posted by Mr_Shade:

Originally posted by coronaas:

Then again I ask why you would tell us to contact Ubisoft support if they cannot and I quote:

Unfortunately, Ubisoft cannot provide refunds or otherwise process returns for credit of any kind. Any product refund request must occur at the place of purchase, as the individual retail outlets set their own refund policy.

Was this not the case when I posted this or was I lied to again by another Ubisoft employee?

I said to contact support and they can tell you the next stage – which is appears they did in your case.

I do not know everyone’s individual circumstances.

I have just heard from UBISoft support: and they are now asking me the reasons for a refund. I’ve told them the truth, I also told them that Steam told me to contact them for a refund.

I’ll keep you all informed of the outcome.

Its all a vicious circle at the moment, Steam saying contact UBISoft, UBIsoft saying contact Steam.”


Like I said, go with the firebomb

:Lobo Santo (profile) says:

Arrr Matey!

Is it still piracy if I paid for the game but downloaded the pirated version because it just plays better? (doesn’t require the disk, doesn’t install any DRM malware, etc)

Such has pretty much become my standard MO lately; buy game, download pirate version, open game long enough to obtain my serial number or some such if necessary, install hassle-free pirated version, enjoy game which I paid for.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Arrr Matey!

…but the drones won’t realise that. If everyone says that, they won’t say “damn, better remove the DRM”, they’ll say “100% of our games are being pirated! We need more DRM!”, at least up to the point where nobody bothers with their games any more.

They’re killing their industry and they don’t even know it because they’re too busy worrying about “pirates”.

:Lobo Santo (profile) says:

Re: Re: Arrr Matey!

So I’ll have a “legit” serial # which is unique to my game for online play, as “cracked” versions or re-used serial #’s often don’t work well if you want to shoot at strangers in online battles…

Also, so I can register and be eligible for “support” for the company as well as download official patches.

:Lobo Santo (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Arrr Matey!

Yeah… but what if it’s a game that I really wanna play?

Besides, I’d bet good money the game developers couldn’t give two sh!ts about DRM–it’s probly the middle-manager types, accountants, lawyers… ya know, people who have no clue what computer games are really about.

By buying the game, I am supporting the clueless dolts who insist on DRM, but I’m also supporting the clever talented game developers who made a game which I want to play.

Of course, there are some games I wish I’d pirated first and then not wasted my $$$ on such a steaming pile of carp, but let’s no go into that one.

HothMonster says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Arrr Matey!

“Yeah… but what if it’s a game that I really wanna play?”

Wait and buy it cheap, I know its not always easy but making the point is worth it. You vote with your wallet and a full price purchase says I am ok with DRM even though you clearly are not. Suck it up and wait till it goes cheap, this will happen faster the less people buy it on release.

If a game is awesome you should pay for it but if that game is crippled by DLC you should not pay full price, and should not support at launch. Like you say its not the DEVs idea its middle/upper-management who wants this DRM implemented and those people base decisions off the first week of sales.

nasch (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Arrr Matey!

Cheap is still too much. Older titles still sell for $30-40 (at some places anyway). That’s what new games should be, and older ones $10-20. Best Buy has Halo for $10 – when did that come out, 2000? That should be an Xbox marketplace download for 5 bucks. Instead they’re remaking it with new graphics and I’m sure they’ll want 60 for it.


Ninja (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Arrr Matey!

Personally I don’t wanna play any game that’s not as simple as copying it and running. If I feel the urge to play anything different than that I’ll go for the minimum effort path: file sharing. DRM is sure to make me go ‘illegal’ be it because I won’t buy or because I’ll buy and keep using the alternative copy.

John Doe says:

Perfect example of your "business model problem"

Once again, if your product can’t outperform the pirated version, your battle against piracy will always be uphill.

This article is a perfect example of your statement that piracy is a business model problem. At the very least, this may cause legit customers to buy the game but then download the pirated copy to get past the ridiculous DRM. At the most, it will cause people who my have paid to skip the whole payment step and just download the pirated copy to avoid the hassle altogether.

Why can’t content creators ever get this point? People don’t buy content because they have to, they do it because they want to. So why make it hard on them?

out_of_the_blue says:

Re: Perfect example of your "business model problem"

You can’t even describe it without separating users into “legit” and “pirates”. It’s not a business model problem, it’s a theft problem.

“So why make it hard on [legit customers]? — It’s the THIEVES who make it hard on those who aren’t. Shouldn’t be any need to point that out, but you people have such twisted perspectives that you can’t see how NOT getting paid for consumed content IS reasonably considered a theft.

I’ll try an example. Suppose you’ve a video rental store. Are you going to let people walk in, take DVDs off the shelf to go watch, even though they return them to the proper place? You’re out nothing, after all. Now consider that you’ve paid millions to produce the content, not just bought the DVD. You’d be outraged at THEFT.

I’m again convinced this site is actually a double-cross honeypot put on by the content industry, because your pieces convince me of the opposite of what you appear to promote.

John Doe says:

Re: Re: Perfect example of your "business model problem"

You can’t even describe it without separating users into “legit” and “pirates”.

I know and I didn’t. But notice only the legit customers get punished.

Are you going to let people walk in, take DVDs off the shelf to go watch, even though they return them to the proper place? You’re out nothing, after all

I will assume you honestly don’t understand scarce vs infinite goods here instead of trying to create a smoke screen. First, if someone takes a DVD then I am out the potential rental fee when someone else comes and and the video isn’t there. Taking a copy and leaving the original you are out nothing.

I just can’t believe you don’t actually get the point that this site makes?????? It is about whether piracy is ok or not. It is about how to compete with it. By annoying your paying customers you aren’t competing with it very well and may actually drive some of them away. All in a failed attempt to drive away pirates. Get it?

John Fenderson (profile) says:

Re: Re: Perfect example of your "business model problem"

You can’t even describe it without separating users into “legit” and “pirates”.

Wait, I think in a dim, distant past, a wise man said:

:Lobo Santo (profile), Aug 19th, 2011 @ 8:39am

Such has pretty much become my standard MO lately; buy game, download pirate version, open game long enough to obtain my serial number or some such if necessary, install hassle-free pirated version, enjoy game which I paid for.

Hmm, the clean division between “legit” and “pirate” users isn’t so clean after all.

I realize that OOB is a troll, but a rare breed of relatively high quality trolls that seems to actually make the occasional thought-out argument (in between all the misrepresentations, personal attacks, and unwarranted insults).

So I appeal to you, OOB, to please understand the point this site is making: it’s not that piracy is OK at all. It’s that piracy can be dealt with in a manner that is better for all parties: businesses and consumers alike. It’s that many of the ways it’s dealt with now not only make the problem worse, but also causes a lot of collateral damage to society as a whole.

Personally, I think society would be far better off if these entities simply went out of business rather than doing what they do now. But — and this is the point this site makes repeatedly — even better than that would be if they adjusted their business models to increase their profitability and stopped kicking innocent people in the teeth.

Ninja (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Perfect example of your "business model problem"

Piracy is not ok. File sharing is.

And in my case they don’t need to worry, I don’t even feel like downloading a ‘pirate’ copy. They don’t deserve me trying their games the way they treat their customers. But then again I can download multiple copies just for the heck of it and to get them “omg omg piracy is rampant” then strengthen up the DRM to the point ppl will abandon them and they’ll cease to exist.

nasch (profile) says:

Re: Re: Perfect example of your "business model problem"

I’m again convinced this site is actually a double-cross honeypot put on by the content industry, because your pieces convince me of the opposite of what you appear to promote.

You’re convinced that DRM substantially reduces piracy? Or that it helps businesses that use it? That it causes more people to buy? That it’s good for customers? That it doesn’t make products worse? What exactly are you convinced of that’s the opposite of what TechDirt is saying here?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Perfect example of your "business model problem"

Opening a dictionary or reading the criminal statues, both of which clearly define ‘theft’ and ‘copying’ as separate things that do not overlap, is such a twisted perspective to have on reality….

Your example is ludicrous, if you’ve produced the content and you don’t want people to do something that something automatically becomes ‘THEFT?’ No, that’s not how words or laws work.

I’m convinced this commenter is actually a double-cross honeypot put on by the internet pirates, because its comments convince me of the opposite of what they appear to promote.

Overcast (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Perfect example of your "business model problem"

Opening a dictionary or reading the criminal statues, both of which clearly define ‘theft’ and ‘copying’ as separate things that do not overlap, is such a twisted perspective to have on reality….

Sure, agree totally.

But why do the company’s insist on screwing paying customers?

Piracy is no excuse to give PAYING customers a steaming pile of internet/DRM dependent crap.

See – what Mike and others are saying is that the pirates – CONTINUE TO PIRATE. DRM or no DRM.

So this ends up screwing **PAYING** customers..

Does DRM stop the ‘pirates’? Go Google any DRM protected game and all the word ‘torrent’ to the back of it – do you think yo ucan get the game?

Sure you can – probably with a complimentary trojan – but still.. we end up with the same result. Pirates think they are getting by for nothing – their cracked, virus laden game works with no DRM.

Us paying customers have to ‘suck it up’ and live with DRM to stop the pirates who are busy playing their games, while a paying customer is running to the store to buy another game because the DRM on the last one he bought prevented him from playing the game.

Sure… makes sense?

To some maybe – but not to my bank account.

Quit treating your paying customers like thieves.

Rikuo (profile) says:

Re: Re: Perfect example of your "business model problem"

“I’ll try an example. Suppose you’ve a video rental store. Are you going to let people walk in, take DVDs off the shelf to go watch, even though they return them to the proper place? You’re out nothing, after all. Now consider that you’ve paid millions to produce the content, not just bought the DVD. You’d be outraged at THEFT.”

Ummm, if I’m a video rental store (which would be a bad business decision in this day and age, just like being a horse buggy firm was a bad decision at the dawn of the automobile), I wouldn’t have “paid millions to produce the content”. I haven’t produced anything. I’m a video rental store. I rent videos, I don’t produce them.
Shows how much (read as little) thought goes into your posts.

PopeHilarius (profile) says:

I find decisions like this so hard to understand. Anyone who might pirate game is definitely going to in this case, because the pirated copy is better. Anyone who wouldn’t normally pirate it (don’t know how/inconvenient/etc), are just going to be annoyed or discouraged from purchasing. It’s a baffling strategy I feel like might actually increase piracy- I purchase most games I play, but if I wanted this title, I’d pirate it.

Any game that people want to play is going to get cracked and shared, and pirated copies of this game will have MORE value than legitimate copies. Not really a promising way to compete.

out_of_the_blue says:

"if your product can't outperform the pirated version"!

WHAT A SCHIZOID CONCEPT. The pirate version IS the product, it’s not independently compiled or with exra features, at most it’s with protections stripped out so that the company CANNOT profit from it. You take a deliberate effort to STEAL and TWIST that criminal act into that they have to compete with it!

John Doe says:

Re: "if your product can't outperform the pirated version"!

You continue to amaze me. You miss the point altogether yet you stated it clearly:

The pirate version IS the product

The product is the game. The DRM is malware. People buy the game, not the malware but they get stuck with it anyway.

The point is, you piss of your paying customers and they may become pirates. Every piece of content in the universe can/has/will be pirated so nobody actually has to pay. But most people will pay so why punish them, you paying customers?

HothMonster says:

Re: "if your product can't outperform the pirated version"!

yeah its the product w/o the hassles created by DRM. So you can buy a game and its a pain in the ass to play or you can download it and it install fine, doesn’t conflict with existing software, and doesn’t require a 24/7 internet connection. The point he is making is they are adding a security feature which makes the gaming experience worse. The pirated version adds value to the game, from the consumers perspective, by removing this “protection.” Also the games are cracked before or same day as release, so this doesn’t curb piracy it only annoys paying customers, or prevents them from buying and/or encourages piracy.

Greg G (profile) says:

Re: "if your product can't outperform the pirated version"!

OOB, you seem to think that if protections (read DRM) are stripped out, the company CANNOT profit from it.

That statement, sir, is at variance with the truth.

Companies can and do profit from products with no DRM, especially from me, as I refuse to purchase anything that even has DRM. I probably have some games that do have DRM but that was before I knew better.

Copy protection for software has been around for decades, and it still hasn’t stopped piracy. It never will.

When you buy a game that requires your internet connection to always be on, or on every time you launch the game, or that you can only install ONE time (if you want to install it on that nice new PC you bought 4 months after buying the game, you have to purchase another license!), then all you do is piss off your customers that bought the software. I guarantee that next time you want a game from that company, you’ll think twice about it due to the previous experience with all the restrictions that DRM imposes on you.

Overcast (profile) says:

Re: "if your product can't outperform the pirated version"!

You take a deliberate effort to STEAL and TWIST that criminal act into that they have to compete with it!

Why do you make assumptions that EVERYONE steals? Some of us also make money from developing content too and many of us, are just honest and do NOT steal, but likewise – Some of us DO NOT HAVE TIME to screw with flakey DRM that restricts us.

I deal with tech issues all day, on a large chunk of my free time, I’m working with a CMS and/or web code – I do not feel like screwing with getting DRM to work. I just don’t care to – I can spend my money elsewhere and not have to fool with it. And so what if my internet’s down – that’s up to me if I even want it at home. It’s also up to me where I do spend my cash. If a product doesn’t meet your needs – should you buy it? One of my ‘needs’ is to be able to game when I want – internet or no internet. Particularly if I’m traveling and don’t want to pay to connect at the Airport, etc.

I buy stuff from Stardock sometimes simply because they don’t junk up their products with DRM that relies on the web to work.

Rikuo (profile) says:

Re: "if your product can't outperform the pirated version"!

And you good sir (and I use that term lightly) refuse to listen to the MANY people (including myself) who have been harmed by DRM and thus download either cracks or whole copies of the game we have just purchased.
Here’s a question for you out_of_the_blue: I buy a PC game, DRM is so bad I can’t even install it, let alone play it (and in case you say anything, my rig is beefy enough to play and I have fast broadband), so I then download a “pirate” version of the game. What’s being stolen here? I consider myself being stolen from, in that I pay money for something that the game developers just didn’t give me. This has actually happened to me.

Anonymous Coward says:

Tim, as always, let me say this:

If you don’t like the DRM, and don’t find the product is good enough with the DRM don’t buy it.

If you don’t buy it, you shouldn’t feel some justification to pirate it. A != B. If the product is good enough, buy it with the restictions, and if those restrictions are too strong, get a different product. Nothing justifies piracy.

HothMonster says:

Re: Re:

It doesn’t justify it but the DRM certainly has the opposite effect than planned. It pushes more people to the pirated version and/or stops otherwise paying customers from doing so. While those once paying now pirating customers may not be morally in the right, it doesn’t mean its any less of an issue.

For the few games I bought despite my objection to their DRM schemes (some times my desire does knock me off my high horse) I still play the pirated version and leave the box copy plastic wrapped. I shouldn’t have to deal with this, this also encourages piracy because now you have a paying customer who just had to learn the processes for piracy and may be more likely to pirate in the future.

Nothing justifies DRM.

Overcast (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

It doesn’t justify it but the DRM certainly has the opposite effect than planned. It pushes more people to the pirated version and/or stops otherwise paying customers from doing so

Yep. I still won’t ‘pirate’ it though. It’s hard now deciding which game to buy. It makes it easier, in the long run, if I just eliminate some company’s totally out of my decision making.

Killercool (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

I think it’s interesting how nobody has brought up the point that even if a legitimate customer removes the DRM, in the eyes of the law, they are just as guilty of copyright infringement as if they had never purchased a copy. So please tell me why I should give you my money, ever?

And to be clear, I prefer true boycotting (that is, completely refusing a product/service), because I don’t want to even boost their ego by adding to their inflated “piracy costs.”

Rikuo (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

That’s actually a good point. Imagine if a game company went on a lawsuit binge like the music and movie studios, and one of the John Does they end up suing comes out with a boxed copy of the game, saying “yes I did download a pirate version, but I did it because the DRM fucked up what I paid for”.
Would like to hear from some fellow commentators with legal experience/knowledge: how would this play out in the courtroom/media?

Chris Rhodes (profile) says:

Re: Re:

If you don’t buy it, you shouldn’t feel some justification to pirate it.

I would completely agree, if I believed file-sharing was a moral issue. That is, if file-sharing is theft, then not liking the terms of the agreement is no excuse to steal. We’re on the same page there.

However, file-sharing isn’t theft, and it isn’t immoral, therefore no “justification” is required to file-share. I (and many others, I’m sure) simply gravitate to the source that offers me the best value.

File-sharing already beats the official version in price, but spending millions to make sure that it beats the official version in features, too? That takes a special kind of stupid.

Beech says:

Think if it more like this: a rental store gets so pissed about theft they enact a new policy: after paying for a rental, every customer gets a full cavity search. Those who do not pay get to walk out the door unmolested, regardless of if they’re leaving empty handed or if they happen to be taking a stack of dvds with them.
Now, if that was the case, would you be SLIGHTLY more or less likely to steal?

Thats what this drm is doing. Hassling paying customers. The pirates remain unaffected.

Overcast (profile) says:

About a month ago my ISP upgraded me to 30megs.

After the tech left, the router kept having issues with DNS resolution and would keep cutting out. I was having my A/C worked on the next day, was too busy for about 5 days to setup a time with the cable company to fix it.

Of course, in the late evening I could play some games – and that’s just what I wanted to do. With the internet being down, I couldn’t work on any of my website stuff so it was a welcome hiatus anyway.

Steam doesn’t work – of course. I didn’t think to put it in offline mode. Since the router was ISP provided, I wasn’t going to bu a new one.

So I run to a local store and buy Supreme Commander 2 – then find out – in spite of it being a DVD, I have to freakin’ download half the game. It didn’t say a thing about that on the package. Then I try to play an Ubisoft game – doesn’t work of course. Keep in mind, I have all of the Assassin’s Creed on disc, along with a few other games.. I forget which game, but I do remember I was quite annoyed with Ubisoft and Square-Enix for these DRM setups that prevented me from playing the games, I PURCHASED.

If I would have gotten them off torrent – guess what? I could have played them.

So I went back to the store – I was frankly in a mood to play a game. Was going to buy Civ5 – but alas, it required internet too. I was pretty annoyed by this time.

I ended up just skipping it totally and bought some a couple new space organizers, went home and cleaned/straightened up.

Since then, I just signed up for an online MMO, but I think my days of BUYING DRM games that require the internet are OVER. I still won’t torrent them but I also WILL NOT BUY ANY SINGLE PLAYER game that requires internet.

Hear that developers???

I probably buy 30 games a year, but if it requires internet and it’s not a internet based game, I won’t *****BUY***** it.

I’m tired of this, I frankly don’t have time to screw with it and I’m not waiting anymore money.

And I am in fact a (former in some cases) paying customer, I don’t agree with piracy.

Overcast (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

Steam offline mode for the win. Steam is about as restrictive of a DRM as i will put up with.

Indeed, but I didn’t *expect* my router to die 3 hours after it was set up.

So Steam failed at providing entertainment when I had time for it.

It failed to come through on it’s concept. A game’s concept is something that is entertaining – not something that just annoys me and that’s what it does.

And the fanboy’s can GO ON all they want and flame me for ranting, but I AM a PAYING customer. Simple as that.

As a matter of fact, my kids and their friends know – if I catch them running torrent on my network at home – they are cut off.

So hell yeah I’m going to piss, moan, and rant – I have a few hundred dollars of shit-ware at home that I can’t use when my internet’s down or if I’m off the grid on my laptop.

And yeah – Steam is …. ‘ok… about it, since you can go in offline mode.

But, half the time I end up going back to play Fallout 3, Warcraft 3, Civ4, Rome:Total War – and other games – that you know what? Just ‘effing work.

Overcast (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

thats the first time ive heard fallout 3 accused of working, :b

i kid, i kid

Not New Vegas… and sure – I have a no CD crack on my Fallout 3, I think.. maybe it’s just the script loader that lets it run without the DVD.

But I don’t so much mind a DVD check to be honest.

My fallout 3 works nicely ๐Ÿ™‚

I fully support people paying for content. I also fully support not giving paying customers a headache when it’s supposed to be ‘entertainment’.

Almost makes one want to console game… (yeah, I’m a die-hard PC-Gamer, I do admit)

taoareyou (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

I have purchased some awesome old games from GOG.com I used to go to Abandonware sites looking for all those games I never got around to playing back in the 90s but I have found many of them on GOG. Not only are they DRM free, but there’s no hassle trying to get them to work on my more modern machine. ๐Ÿ™‚ GOG is a great example of how providing a convenience is worth paying for over downloading a game for free. I know in the past I had to struggle for hours sometimes tweaking settings to make an old game playable on current Windows.

Overcast (profile) says:

I fully understand the position of developers and getting their hard work pirated.

BUT the company’s DO NOT seem to understand the position of PAYING customers.

I’m just DONE With EA too – I really like the Sims 3, because it’s a ‘creative’ game and I don’t like to just blow things up all the time. But I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to re-install ALL the DVD’s to get it to work.

See – there’s the problem with ‘The Sims 3’ – the more you buy from them, the more of a hassle maintaining it becomes.. is that how it should be?

Steam: MUST IT REALLY have such a stupid file structure? I hate it’s organization. It goes 14 directories deep in some of these games, it’s a total mess on my file system. So what? I’m OCD about organization on my file system – but then I work on File Servers and App Servers for a living – so in that case, it is a benefit that I’m like that.

Steam just makes me mad about how it wants to install.

Ubisoft: yeah, great games – as long as you have internet. But then when my internet’s working, I’m either working or playing a MMO anyway, so they kinda fail there too.

Square-Enix really pissed me off – I BUY the DVD and then have to download half the game?? What’s the point of selling the DVD in a store? Come on now. Stupid.

Anymore, I seem to end up playing Roulette on facebook or Mahjong on Linux more than the games I have paid 50+ bucks for… sad, huh?

Flame all you want, all you care to – call me whatever, but it doesn’t matter. I work for my money too. I don’t expect to get ripped off either.

I understand the developers point – they don’t want to get ripped off.

But Nor do I want to get ripped off – and that’s why I have this attitude.

I’ve been purchasing games since 1979. I start on Atari 2600, went to Commodore, went to Nintendo, Sega, IBM-PC, Playstation, X-Box.

I could pack the back of a pick-up truck full of the games I’ve bought. I’m a game junky…

But you know what – in all honesty, since my internet went down and I wandered from my PC… I have maybe put in 3 hours of gaming in the last three weeks. Maybe that’ll change this winter, but… dunno. I was just really annoyed I couldn’t play any of the three games I had recently bought before my internet went down.

So go get your pirates gaming industry. I’ll sign up for a single Subscription service, like Sony Station and that’ll probably be it now. It saves me cash anyway.

HothMonster says:

Re: Re:

“Steam: MUST IT REALLY have such a stupid file structure? “

lol yeah, it drives me crazy. some games in common, some under users name, some split between both. I had to just give it its own harddrive and try not to look. But for all the little annoyances I think steam provides enough service to make it worthwhile, also the fucking sales are unbeatable.

“I’ll sign up for a single Subscription service, like Sony Station and that’ll probably be it now.”

Gamefly? they are offering PC download rentals soon in addition to the console games mail delivery. Although i think its funny that you are ranting about online DRM and talking about signing up for an online games service.

I do sympathize though

Overcast (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

Gamefly? they are offering PC download rentals soon in addition to the console games mail delivery. Although i think its funny that you are ranting about online DRM and talking about signing up for an online games service.

Well, there are some good games out on Steam. I won’t deny that – and I give it to Steam – they do allow an ‘offline mode’. Kudos for that, but it’s still worthless when your internet goes down when you don’t expect it.

Each of my teenagers, myself and my wife have Steam accounts with at least 3 games on each account.

See – I do in fact pay for it – and sure, I’ll still buy some games if they really catch my interest with DRM – but then, like ‘The Sims 3’ – I get so pissed off at maintaining the game that I just say screw it and give up.

I bought every expansion for the Sims 3 up to the night-life one (I forget the name) and then I install it, it pukes all over about a version mis-match or some crap and I have to yank the entire game, and re-install all freakin’ 6 DVDs – takes about an hour, at best.

6 codes to enter. Have to re-patch the custom stuff, meaning skin replacements and all that jazz – some will just work ok, other stuff I have to re-install.

Turning it into a 2 hour ordeal.


Is it worth it to play a game for 2-4 hours? Naaa. Just wasn’t.

I mean, sure – it’ll work after that, but then I almost dread buying a new expansion for it.

Anonymous Coward says:

Ubisoft has been doing this for months, they used the same Scaled-back DRM in the new Splinter Cell game and the last Assassin’s Creed.

Ubisoft just wants to have the entire publishing backend to themselves and are bitter that they have to share it with distribution services like Steam and Gametap. So their solution to not having complete control over the game and how the user accesses their game is to stack on this current layer of DRM that acts as the frontend that the user has to go through to use their game. Piracy has nothing to do with it. It’s why Ubisoft has been moving all of their services to this new “uplay” system (it’s just their ubisoft online systems that you must be connected to at all times to receive any benefits for using it). They wanted a central place that they controlled where they could assign achievements, DLC, extras, set up tournaments, announce new titles, etc. Without having another third party dip into their cut to host these things for them.

It’s an underhanded move and yet another step to putting every user into a tiny little jail in which they cannot escape, but I see why they did it from a business standpoint. Doesn’t make me, or many other former Ubisoft customers, any less angry about it.

Jay (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

No, Uplay is an evil knockoff of the $10 deal. It does not need to exist. At all.

Basically, in order to unlock the multiplayer version of that game, you either buy new or you buy a coupon through Gamestop for the Uplay version. I had a debate at length with someone that doesn’t understand price differentiation at all. This actually punishes the used market along with the rental market because in order to play the game’s multiplayer, they pay $10 extra dollars.

No, I’m not a fan of EA’s Origin, Ubisoft’s Uplay, or any company putting up artificial scarcities to paying customers.

Yes, batshit insanity on Ubisoft’s part, no it shouldn’t be there.

Sniperdoc (profile) says:

Don't buy Ubisoft games

Ever since Ubishaft decided to put that OSP DRM on their games, I’ve refused to purchase any of their games. I used to BUY a lot of their games… no more.

Someone mentioned that the reason they have less piracy, because of their DRM, is possibly because people are buying less of their products… I seriously hope so. I hope people give Ubishaft a friggin wakeup call and stop buying their games.

They won’t change their ways until it hurts their bottom line… but then, in retrospect, they might say that the PC Game market is dying because no one’s buying their games, and they’ll invest more into consoles…

Their idiots either way… Yves Guillemot (CEO) is an idiot.

Jeffrey Nonken (profile) says:

Somebody might get away with something

Years ago (1990s) I passed along (to a chat room with mostly intelligent people) something I’d heard that if the long-distance companies stopped billing by minutes and billed a flat monthly rate, they’d save enough on the simplified billing that (assuming they passed on the savings) long distance service would cost a small fraction of what we’d been paying. $10/month? $5/month? Something ridiculously low.

(This was in the bad old days before cell phones were in common use. Just about everybody used landlines in those days. AT&T had recently been broken up, Sprint and MCI had barely become legitimate, and so on.)

I thought that was kind of cool, actually, and a few people agreed with me. But a number of people were outraged by the idea: what if somebody called his cousin in New Zealand and then left the phone off the hook for a week?

Of course, New Zealand would have been an international call, so the example was a bad one. But what would happen if enough people did something like that domestically? (Answer: probably raise the monthly bill by a few cents, and the phone company would probably add ways to automatically detect and disconnect unused connections, if they didn’t have them already. Would it be widespread enough to jack up the rates? Doubt it.) And what about some lonely old grandma who only used 10 minutes of long distance every six months? (Dunno. Obviously there’s no possible way to handle that, right? Because personally I can only think of three or four possible ways off the top of my head.)

This is what I call the “somebody might get away with something” syndrome. It doesn’t matter how much money you’d save on long distance; if somebody else got ten times as much service than I did but we both paid the same amount, even if it was 1/100th of what we used to pay for the same service — if somebody could get away with something, I didn’t want it.

This is what I see happening with Ubisoft and a number of other companies (and people) regarding copyright violation. If one person gets something for free undeserved, it doesn’t matter that the same availability causes 10 other people to buy it that wouldn’t have — it’s more important not to let the filthy thief get away with being a freetard than it is for me to make more money.

Of course we can’t couch it in such terms, even in our heads, or our insanity (or stupidity) would be revealed. So we have to make stuff up about how much we’re losing and ignore all contrary facts in order to make ourselves look like victims.

Can’t have people getting away with stuff! That’s just wrong.

nickels says:

After spending 2 days trying to get Fallout Vegas to run (using steam) and then facing a 7G download I:
1) Returned the game to target for a refund.
2) Resolved (resolutely) to never run a game that installs the steam malware on my computer again.

It amazes me how many fanboys steam has. It is such an onerous disaster.

FarCry 2. One of my favorite games ever. $9 on the shelf at best buy. No cd, no internet, no nuthin.
Stalker Shadow of Chernobyl. $19 best buy. No cd, no internet. Maybe my favorite game (except too hard).

See the pattern game industry? There must be 500 old games out there for me over the next few years. $9 instead of $60 for a new game…

Guess that means you’ll be losing a lot of money on me…

nickels says:

Re: Re: Re:

Well, luckily I bought it at target. And target is a decently respectable company that refunded my money when I found the product was cra*.

I’ve heard horror stories of people trying to return games to steam, blocking their credit card and then having steam hold all the rest of their games hostage.
Steam is evil.

Which brings me to ereaders. You think companies aren’t going to try this garbage eventually with your online books? We will rue the day we abandoned the printed book!

Jeff (profile) says:

Ubisoft can suck it

I’m a sys admin for a rather large company with thousands of employees and, more importantly, thousands of workstations. ALL of these workstations have 1TB HDDs in them and the most I’ve ever seen one filled was about 40 GB. Connection-wise, we’ve got the equivalent of several hundred T3 lines.

1. Install uTorrent on every single one.
2. Have each copy monitor a network drive location for torrents and set each installation to run during non-working hours.
3. Put a torrent for every Ubisoft game ever in the aforementioned directory and let ’em all download.
4. Remotely delete all of the downloaded data.
5. Repeat.
6. Lulz.

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