Displaying items by tag: DRM


Remember how we told you that Microsoft was going to pull out all of the PR and marketing tricks they can muster to try and convince people that Windows 8 is a good thing? Well now they are trying to counter the effects of the recent comments by top names in gaming; most notably Gabe Newell of Valve and John Carmack of id. If you do not remember what these two said we will boil it down here. Gabe Newell stated that Windows 8 was a “catastrophe” which John Carmack stated there was “no reason to upgrade”.

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Ubisoft has responded to the claims that its UPlay DRM software is a rootkit that enabled them (and anyone else) to install arbitrary code on systems that it was installed on. The original claim was from developer Travis Ormandy who posted the issue on pastebin and also showed the vulnerability working with a website specially crafted to take advantage of the exploit he found. Ormandy likened the issue to Sony’s famous screw up with their BMG DRM that was in actuality a rootkit and caused the recall of quite a bit of Sony games.

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Ubisoft is not one of the better loved game distribution shops out there. Even going back to the Windows XP days they were unpopular with their very oppressive DRM that users were forced to deal with. I can vividly remember the days of not being able to play certain games because of installing a service pack, or using a 64-bit OS. Ubisoft’s refusal to do anything about these issues pushed many legal game owners to resort to cracked executables just to play the games they had paid for.

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diablo_3dhackSo far we stayed away from the whole Diablo III fiasco (with the exception of a poll on the site about it). For the most part there is simply too many stories about it, it is almost as bad as all of the “tech” news that is about Zuckerberg’s wedding. Sure Diablo was a great game and from many accounts Diablo III is an even better follow on. The problem is that although Blizzard’s decision to allow for the game to be distributed online was a great idea and allowed people to gain access to it on launch day in a way that we have not seen in a long time, there are and always will be issues with running online games.

Published in Editorials
Tuesday, 30 August 2011 22:27

Steam; "Piracy is not an issue"

news_steam-logoWe have heard many comments about Steam, Vale’s distribution service these range from very bad to it is the greatest thing since the invention of the internet. Our personal feelings fall in the middle. It is a great service and has some very competitive pricing, but we would like to be able to turn a few things off from the social side and as a parent I would like to be able to monitor it a little better.

Still no matter what you think about Steam one thing cannot be denied. Steam has found a way to make money even in Russia, where the majority of games and software are pirated. How have they done this? Well they have decided not to try and stop piracy (which is impossible) but to compete head to head with it.  To quote Gabe Newell "The best way to fight piracy is to create a service that people need," We would add at least a service that people want. Gabe recently spoke to Kotaku about this subject and their concerns over companies Like EA and Sony developing their own Steam-Like services.  Gabe said he is not concerned about either.

The problem as Gabe sees it is that companies like EA (who has their own problems with their recent EULA mistake), Sony, and others are making their games “Worth Less” (not to be confused with worthless) by adding in more DRM restrictions to protect and monetize their games. This is often presented as a way to thwart piracy (which is, of course, impossible) but is more and more commonly meant to nickel and dime the consumer and try to make more money per game title. Instead of worrying about this type of approach Gabe thinks that companies need to provide a service to the consumers, this way they will feel the value of the game and the service behind it; "Customers want to know everything is going to be there for them no matter what: Their saved games and configurations will be there. They don't want any uncertainty." Which is what you get when you get many of today’s games uncertainty , you never know if you are going to get what you pay for or if the game will run due to restrictive DRM that is forced on you to try and “prevent piracy” (which is impossible).

Gabe also mentioned that Steam will not be standing still, as the market moves from the PC to the Console to the Integrated TV, Steam will have to evolve. To put is in his own words “"Where we are today is trivial to where we will be down the line. We need to be focusing on where we are headed."
He also goes on to say that he knows that if they make a big enough mistake Steam can fail and become nothing more than the “answer to a trivia question."

Source Kotaku

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