#1 Posted by crusader8463 (14428 posts) -

For those you unaware of Ubisofts new DRM that they plan to release on all of their future games, let me catch you up. With the release of the long delayed PC release of Assassins Creed 2, Ubisoft is planning to launch it with a very restrictive DRM system that "absolutely" no one can endorse. Essentially what it does, is while you are playing you must have a CONSTANT connection to the internet at all times, or the game will lock up and not allow the user to continue playing if at anytime you lose connection to their servers. This isn't something like a verify your account before you boot up system that many games use these days, but a constant connection that must be maintained or this single player only game will freeze and not allow you to continue playing it.
 
This is of course a problem for many people for reasons too numerous to go into here, but one in particular is how this affects our soldiers in some parts of the world. In an article that you can find here, a soldier on the front lines talks about how because of his location he has access to a high speed internet that has bandwidth caps and is not always connected. Due to his remote location getting new games is next to impossible unless he uses programs like Steam to download the games directly to his computer without the need to find a way to get the game shipped to him on the front lines. I will let the soldier explain his predicament in his own words:
 

"I'm deployed to Iraq right now, and [DRM] has ranged from annoying to unforgivable for me. I would like to let you know that Steam is pretty awesome with working with deployed folks to make sure we can access/play our games,"

"I've had hit and miss success with some of the other download companies. Any kind of game that tries to call home, though, is generally more of a problem than it is worth. Especially ones that try to resolve your IP address with your version/purchase location."

The issue is Internet connectivity. "Net connectivity on some of the larger [Forward Operating Bases]—I'm on Victory Base, it's HUGE and very built-up—is not terrible. However, we all have severe bandwidth caps with the 'government sponsored Internet,' drops in connectivity, or we have to pay a high price for 'civilian' Internet," he explained. The price of his Internet connection? $150 a month for a 192k connection. He also points out that he doesn't want to sound like he's complaining about the situation. "There are definitely guys out there who have it much worse."


#2 Posted by Andorski (5365 posts) -

I don't think I ever bought an Ubisoft game on PC (or ever plan to in the foreseeable future), but still... fuck this DRM.  I wouldn't worry too much though.  Once their games tank on PC, they'll be forced to figure out a new DRM method.  Either that or abandon PC all together for consoles.

#3 Posted by Jeust (10854 posts) -

Tough luck bro! The only thing worth doing is boycotting the game if you don't agree with it.

#4 Posted by ImpendingFoil (555 posts) -

Ubisoft DRM is what it is. This kind of DRM is the result of what they feel they have to do to protect their product from being pirated at a ratio of like 100 pirate copies for every 1 sold.  Does it suck that people in Iraq can't play? Yeah. Should people boycott this DRM? Probably. In the end though the game will probably still be pirated but it is just kind of sad that companies have to take these kind of measures because a few hundred thousand people can't pay for their games.

#5 Posted by Vod_Crack (752 posts) -

Remember guys, Ubisoft used to be way into Starforce back years ago. This isn't too surprising.

#6 Posted by mracoon (4978 posts) -

Ubisoft seem like they want the PC version of the game to fail so they have an excuse not to develop for it anymore. Also they must be dreaming if they think that this'll prevent piracy.

Moderator
#7 Edited by graniteoctopus (260 posts) -

edit: alright, takin it back. nothin to see here
#8 Posted by Drebin_893 (2933 posts) -

No, the DRM is not making life harder. You can not like this DRM, but this is just really clutching at straws.

#9 Posted by Jeust (10854 posts) -
@graniteoctopus said:
" um...shouldnt soldiers be spending their time...you know...fighting and protecting? "
Yep... even in front of the computer.
#10 Posted by brukaoru (5079 posts) -

Really a shame that there are so many companies going this route and making it impossible for those in the military to play their games. Not to mention just wanting to play a game without connecting to the internet, or if someone has some downtime with their ISP, then having a game freeze in the middle of playing is ridiculous.

#11 Posted by SuperfluousMoniker (2913 posts) -
@graniteoctopus: I know you're probably not serious, but these are human beings we're talking about here. Without some sort of recreation, they'd go insane doing the things they have to do.
#12 Posted by Blaze4Life86 (32 posts) -

Every PC game gets pirated, this will be no exception.

#13 Posted by Jimbo (9983 posts) -

Drebin is right; this is a bit straw clutchy.

#14 Posted by wefwefasdf (6729 posts) -
@graniteoctopus said:
"um...shouldnt soldiers be spending their time...you know...fighting and protecting? "

Oh, yes... because they have absolutely no free time. /sarcasm
#15 Posted by Nemesis (317 posts) -

It is more than enough that Ubisoft is screwing their customers. Nothing good is going to come out of saying that they are screwing over the soldiers.
 
Gaming is not a right but a privilege. Just play another game. It is not a life/death situation if someone doesn't get to play a video game.
 
I hate when people bring politics and the military into their arguments when they have nothing to do with it. Customers getting screwed over by DRM is enough. All you are doing is grasping for straws when straws aren't needed.

#16 Posted by iam3green (14390 posts) -

yes, i am a person who hates DRM. it is stupid thing to have as it makes people have crappy things done to their computers. it also makes some programs not work properly. look at the game spore, that had DRM and it got pirated way even before the game came out.
 
after a long time during war, i am sure they want to sit back and relax with something to do.

#17 Posted by SeriouslyNow (8534 posts) -
@Drebin_893 said:
" No, the DRM is not making life harder. You can not like this DRM, but this is just really clutching at straws. "
Huh?  Did you even bother to read the article.  Soldiers don't have full internet access, even in the best equipped rec rooms because Iraq is still very much a warzone. They have as much right to complain (possibly more so) as any other consumer against this shitty DRM.
#18 Posted by xyzygy (10077 posts) -

Does this mean Splinter Cell Conviction will be like this too? What if you live far in the country and don't have access to high speed, or are still on a dial up connection? This is complete garbage. Not only that, you're in the middle of a mission or a fight and - oh whoops - your connection stutters.   
 
I can see the 360 version of Conviction being the preferable one now. Why would someone want to play with such a harsh restriction??

#19 Posted by animateria (3259 posts) -

DRM hurts consumers and never pirates.
 
I understand corporations trying to find a solution, but DRM obviously hurts the wrong people.
 
Hell, I can't buy Borderlands DLC on the PC since I uninstall and reinstall games in a regular basis. A 5 download limit only isn't going to cut it.

#20 Posted by Lind_L_Taylor (3966 posts) -

I usually ignore it if it isn't available on Steam.  What's the big deal?   Don't play it & find games
that you can play.  There's only a million other available games out there.

#21 Edited by jakob187 (21755 posts) -

Blame pirates, not Ubisoft.

#22 Posted by bhhawks78 (1207 posts) -
@mracoon said:
" Ubisoft seem like they want the PC version of the game to fail so they have an excuse not to develop for it anymore. Also they must be dreaming if they think that this'll prevent piracy. "
No if they didn't want to develop it, they wouldn't waste the money developing it, they don't owe the angry pc players who would cry if it wasn't made, and they don't owe players like me anything that would have bought it if not for this insane drm.  Vote with your wallet, not cry baby ill informed internet posts.  Anytime drm interferes with my play experience that company no longer gets my money, when a pirated version is BETTER  than the paid version you know you fucked up.
#23 Posted by Coombs (3449 posts) -
@bhhawks78 said:
...when a pirated version is BETTER  than the paid version you know you fucked up. "
/thread
#24 Posted by mracoon (4978 posts) -
@bhhawks78 said:
" @mracoon said:
" Ubisoft seem like they want the PC version of the game to fail so they have an excuse not to develop for it anymore. Also they must be dreaming if they think that this'll prevent piracy. "
No if they didn't want to develop it, they wouldn't waste the money developing it, they don't owe the angry pc players who would cry if it wasn't made, and they don't owe players like me anything that would have bought it if not for this insane drm.  Vote with your wallet, not cry baby ill informed internet posts.  Anytime drm interferes with my play experience that company no longer gets my money, when a pirated version is BETTER  than the paid version you know you fucked up. "
What are you talking about, I'm agreeing with you.
Moderator
#25 Posted by AhmadMetallic (18954 posts) -

ohwell

#26 Posted by Drebin_893 (2933 posts) -
@SeriouslyNow said:
" @Drebin_893 said:
" No, the DRM is not making life harder. You can not like this DRM, but this is just really clutching at straws. "
Huh?  Did you even bother to read the article.  Soldiers don't have full internet access, even in the best equipped rec rooms because Iraq is still very much a warzone. They have as much right to complain (possibly more so) as any other consumer against this shitty DRM. "
Yeah, I did read the article, thanks. A few people will be inconvenienced by this DRM, if a few of them are soldiers I don't care, it's still (albeit probably unsuccessfully) trying to fight piracy. Which in my mind is a good thing, and more important than a few thousand people being inconvenienced by it's presence.
#27 Posted by SeriouslyNow (8534 posts) -
@Drebin_893 said:
" @SeriouslyNow said:
" @Drebin_893 said:
" No, the DRM is not making life harder. You can not like this DRM, but this is just really clutching at straws. "
Huh?  Did you even bother to read the article.  Soldiers don't have full internet access, even in the best equipped rec rooms because Iraq is still very much a warzone. They have as much right to complain (possibly more so) as any other consumer against this shitty DRM. "
Yeah, I did read the article, thanks. A few people will be inconvenienced by this DRM, if a few of them are soldiers I don't care, it's still (albeit probably unsuccessfully) trying to fight piracy. Which in my mind is a good thing, and more important than a few thousand people being inconvenienced by it's presence. "
You argued that that he was clutching at straws when he was just relating the unfair inconvenience a soldier (who you seemingly don't care about) was complaining about.  That's not clutching at straws it's agreeing with the soldier's point of view.  Just because you don't care it doesn't make an argument hollow or baseless, it just makes your lack of care obvious.
#28 Posted by Drebin_893 (2933 posts) -
@SeriouslyNow said:
" @Drebin_893 said:
" @SeriouslyNow said:
" @Drebin_893 said:
" No, the DRM is not making life harder. You can not like this DRM, but this is just really clutching at straws. "
Huh?  Did you even bother to read the article.  Soldiers don't have full internet access, even in the best equipped rec rooms because Iraq is still very much a warzone. They have as much right to complain (possibly more so) as any other consumer against this shitty DRM. "
Yeah, I did read the article, thanks. A few people will be inconvenienced by this DRM, if a few of them are soldiers I don't care, it's still (albeit probably unsuccessfully) trying to fight piracy. Which in my mind is a good thing, and more important than a few thousand people being inconvenienced by it's presence. "
You argued that that he was clutching at straws when he was just relating the unfair inconvenience a soldier (who you seemingly don't care about) was complaining about.  That's not clutching at straws it's agreeing with the soldier's point of view.  Just because you don't care it doesn't make an argument hollow or baseless, it just makes your lack of care obvious. "
Fair enough, my apologies. I think I just read it with a very cynical point of view. The title of this thread seemed really... I don't even know how to articulate it, it just sounded slimy to me.
#29 Posted by CornBREDX (5981 posts) -

I am ex army special forces support. I fought in Iraq and Afghanistan. I dont give a crap about the DRM, and while i think it sucks I support thinking of ways to stop piracy. The soldiers over seas shouldnt care either. If all thats out is an ubisoft game (which is unlikely btw), I'd suggest reading a book or watching movies on your free time. MWR has more things to do then play video games. Just my opinoin though, when I was in iraq we played Halo, diablo 2, and starcraft alot on our free time. Those were local network games, granted; we didnt have the restrictions (DRM) they have now but these games still exist. Sometimes, there is a good reason to play older games I guess. 
 
These are my thougths but because a company is trying to find a way to fight piracy (all-be-it poorly) that isnt a reason to think up ways to point at a section of people and say "see, your hurting our soldiers!" Bah, scapegoat much?  
 
I disagree with your sentiments; there are other games to play and a soldier doesnt have THAT much free-time and shouldnt be picky. Part of being a soldier is being resourceful.
#30 Posted by SeriouslyNow (8534 posts) -

The soldier is one who made the complaint, so it hardly counts as a scapegoat when others who agree with his complaint do him a good turn by reporting said complaint.  DRM is all well and good, but this isn't DRM, this is something above and beyond DRM it's about a company who wants full control of the thing they offer for sale, essentially renting it to the customer at full price and furthermore making said rented at full price product functionless if internet access is lost beyond the customer's control.  That is ridiculous, draconian and likely illegal in some courts of law.  This slimy sort of corporate control is actually using piracy as a scapegoat to justify a rental product experience with full price admission.

#31 Posted by spazmaster666 (1991 posts) -

Actually as bad a decision as this seems to be, I doubt that even Ubisoft expects any sort of DRM, no matter how draconian, to be able to stop piracy. Their hope I bet is to prevent the game from being pirated before release. If they are successful at preventing pirates from pirating their game before it is released, then that's the best they can hope for.

#32 Posted by TheHBK (5563 posts) -

Here's a solution, use a console.  I am sure that taking a 360 with a CD wallet full of games is easier to deal with.  Also, Xbox Live Arcade still works online if you bought the games on that console.  Its not like they have to play games out there anyway.

#33 Posted by Binman88 (3690 posts) -
@spazmaster666:  Bear in mind that they intend to use this DRM for every upcoming Ubisoft title in the future. If it's hacked for one game, it's essentially hacked for all - as soon as pirates hack AC2's protection, they're going to find hacking any further Ubisoft games a lot easier with that knowledge, unless Ubisoft decide to create an entirely new version of DRM each time they release a game.
#34 Posted by th0a (43 posts) -
http://www.penny-arcade.com/comic/2010/2/19/ 
I really feel for people who don't have access to the internet etc but it really isn't ubisofts fault its the pirates fault, pc gamers complain about how their not being supported by games companies but they themselves are killing the PC, its a shame that companies have to go to such lengths to protect their games but their hands have been forced by the CONSTANT piracy of their games, suck it up because this is how its going to be from now on i guess
#35 Posted by SeriouslyNow (8534 posts) -

There's CONSTANT piracy of all games for all platforms.  Not just PC.  Open your eyes.

#36 Posted by carlthenimrod (1599 posts) -

Get the Xbox/PS3 version? What it really boils down to is either Ubisoft will release their PC games with this DRM or not release them at all. Piracy on the PC is so awful that it probably cuts into console sales. See Gears of War 2.

#37 Posted by Evilsbane (4736 posts) -
@th0a: So, punishing your Paying customers to stop a bunch of people from doing something that they are going to do regardless is a good idea? Also you do realize that the 360 and Wii are pirated constantly as well.
#38 Posted by Tennmuerti (8174 posts) -

This topic has been done to death.
I'm kinda tired of arguing tbh.
The only real way to argue your opinion to the game companies that I know of is using your wallet. So I will buy games other then AC2.
Also lol @ the simplified one sided view presented by the Penny Arcade.

#39 Posted by spazmaster666 (1991 posts) -
@Binman88 said:
" @spazmaster666:  Bear in mind that they intend to use this DRM for every upcoming Ubisoft title in the future. If it's hacked for one game, it's essentially hacked for all - as soon as pirates hack AC2's protection, they're going to find hacking any further Ubisoft games a lot easier with that knowledge, unless Ubisoft decide to create an entirely new version of DRM each time they release a game. "
If this is the case, then there isn't much logic to this at all other than pointlessly punishing legitimate consumers for no good reason. I mean install limits and online activation is at least acceptable because they are somewhat logical means of making sure your customers have a legitimate product. But requiring an internet connection at all times even for a single player game doesn't make sense as even Steam allows for some sort of offline mode. If this new DRM doesn't have a similar feature then it's going to piss off a lot of people.
#40 Posted by FartyMcNarly (566 posts) -

Soldiers are out fighting for my right to pirate games! They should just pirate games while soldiering about.

#41 Posted by raiz265 (2242 posts) -

i'm always online, i give a crap.

#42 Posted by Creamypies (4091 posts) -

Ubisoft are obviously working for the enemy.

#43 Posted by Binman88 (3690 posts) -
@spazmaster666 said:
" @Binman88 said:
" @spazmaster666:  Bear in mind that they intend to use this DRM for every upcoming Ubisoft title in the future. If it's hacked for one game, it's essentially hacked for all - as soon as pirates hack AC2's protection, they're going to find hacking any further Ubisoft games a lot easier with that knowledge, unless Ubisoft decide to create an entirely new version of DRM each time they release a game. "
If this is the case, then there isn't much logic to this at all other than pointlessly punishing legitimate consumers for no good reason. I mean install limits and online activation is at least acceptable because they are somewhat logical means of making sure your customers have a legitimate product. But requiring an internet connection at all times even for a single player game doesn't make sense as even Steam allows for some sort of offline mode. If this new DRM doesn't have a similar feature then it's going to piss off a lot of people. "
Yeah. I'm all for companies trying to protect their games, but going about it in a way that ultimately is most harmful to the legitimate consumer is the wrong decision. Batman Arkham Asylum had a good idea to prevent early piracy. I'm not exactly sure how it worked, but legitimate buyers of the game had to sign in to Windows Live and download a patch to play. If you didn't, and just played the install from the disc, you couldn't use Batman's grappling hook nor could you enable PhysX effects. I'm sure it's been hacked by now, but it was definitely preventing pirates from playing the game for a week or two after release. May not seem like a long time, but I reckon a good few would-be-pirates just gave up and bought the game to play it instead of waiting.
 
Interesting Q&A article by Tim Edwards, of PC Gamer UK, with Ubisoft, over the PC DRM.