Blizzard Says DRM Is A Losing Battle, Better To Focus On Positive Value

from the focus-on-your-fans,-not-your-enemies dept

A bunch of folks have sent over variations on the story that video gaming company Blizzard has said that DRM is a losing battle. While that part is catchy, even more impressive is the overall reasoning, which is that it just makes a lot more sense to focus on adding value for the people who do want to pay, rather than worrying about the folks who don't want to pay:
"The best approach from our perspective is to make sure that you've got a full-featured platform that people want to play on, where their friends are, where the community is," he added.

"That's a battle that we have a chance in. If you start talking about DRM and different technologies to try to manage it, it's really a losing battle for us, because the community is always so much larger, and the number of people out there that want to try to counteract that technology, whether it's because they want to pirate the game or just because it's a curiosity for them, is much larger than our development teams.

"We need our development teams focused on content and cool features, not anti-piracy technology."
Now this is definitely good news. We're hearing more and more stories where content creators are realizing that wasting so much effort on stopping people who would never buy in the first place is a waste of time. It's much more productive (and useful) to focus on giving people better reasons to buy. And, Blizzard has been known to experiment creatively with that in the past as well. For example, we recently wrote about the virtual goods it was selling in the game, as well as selling some physical goods as well.

That said, Blizzard also does have a history of less inspiring behavior. The company is still fighting a questionable lawsuit over whether or not the creator of a bot is guilty of copyright infringement. It's also been very aggressive in sending out cease-and-desist letters to fan sites. And, worst of all, the company had announced that it would remove LAN support from StarCraft II in an effort to fight "piracy."

So, while it's good to hear these words suggesting a focus on adding more value, rather than fighting at the technology level, the company does have some legacy issues to overcome as well.

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  1. identicon
    Undisclosed Wimp, 28 May 2010 @ 2:39pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Ack, you are wrong in so many ways.

    I'm a HARDCORE PC gamer and the idea of having my PC doing stuff behind my back disgusts me. I HATE steam, for example, because it installs patches automatically. It actually FORCES me to install patches before starting the bloody game! What the hell? It's my PC and my (copy of the) game! Back off man! I want to play my game!

    I also don't want my software poking around my hard drive checking if I'm "legit" like some sort of spyware and sending the data home. Again, my PC, back off.

    And another thing. I love mods. I love modding my games. I love map editors and SDK's. They make the game worth playing after the single/multiplayer gets boring. What you suggest will kill those tools and make the games static, sterile and boring. They feed you horse crap and you eat it while thanking them. Nice...

    No PC player in his sane mind will approve any of this. Problem is, not many care these days. Most new "1337" players that parachuted into the PC scene were imported from the consoles, or were born playing CS. They don't care. They just want shiny graphics and incredibly simplified, unrealistic gameplay so they can "pwn" some "n00bs" online and brag about how their machine can "own" the game at 3072x2304 resolution and 62x AA. Even if the game is incredibly shallow, bloated and bug ridden.

    This is why DOOM and UT are still my favourite games of all time.

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