Print 76 comment(s) - last by Pirks.. on Sep 23 at 9:15 PM

Electronic Arts caves in the face of DRM criticism

In the face of harsh criticism, Electronic Arts has decided to allow multiple Spore screen names for any one Spore online account. Currently, consumers are limited to one account per copy with no support for multiple screen names. The announcement was made on The Official Spore Forum.

Once the change is implemented, each copy of Spore that you have purchased will be able to have one Spore Online Account with five different Spore screen names. When you launch Spore, you will be able to log in with any of those screen names.

The content a consumer creates and the MySpore Page will be associated with the logged in screen name for that account. Each screen name will be able to view and create its own original content. Buddy Lists and Sporecasts will be tied to that screen name. The Achievements earned will be credited to the screen name that is logged in at the time the Achievement is triggered. In the first iteration of this change, all screen names will be playing in the same Galaxy and any content downloaded by any screen name will be available in the Everything section.

In addition to the forum announcement, EA Games Label President Frank Gibeau sent Kotaku a statement defending their position and a list of future changes. According to Gibeau the Spore DRM fiasco was a misunderstanding.

“We’re extremely pleased with the reception SPORE has received from critics and consumers but we’re disappointed by the misunderstanding surrounding the use of DRM software and the limitation on the number of machines that are authorized to play a single a copy of the game,” said Gibeau. He also implied that much of the criticism is “noise” from game pirates, “while it’s easy to discount the noise from those who only want to post or transfer thousands of copies of the game on the Internet, I believe we need to adapt our policy to accommodate our legitimate consumers.”

Gibeau went on to outline specific changes to the current DRM policy:

  • The number of eligible machines will be expanded from three to five.
  • EA will continue to offer channels to request additional activations where warranted.
  • The ability to de-authorize machines and move authorizations to new machines.

In his closing statements, Gibeau stressed the necessity of DRM stating, “we’re hoping that everyone understands that DRM policy is essential to the economic structure we use to fund our games and as well as to the rights of people who create them. Without the ability to protect our work from piracy, developers across the entire game industry will eventually stop investing time and money in PC titles.”

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By xxsk8er101xx on 9/22/2008 12:49:43 AM , Rating: 2
That's better. if I can deauthorize it on my computer and move it somewhere else that works for me. just have to remember to do that whenever I upgrade.

RE: ok
By sc3252 on 9/22/2008 1:34:04 AM , Rating: 5
Its all fine and dandy when you have one game, but what happens when they have 20+ games out with this. having to uninstall every single game is really annoying, and I can imagine thinking, sh*t I forgot to uninstall so and so before the format.

Another thing that is severely flawed is that supposed "noise" from pirates, well you know what pirates don't know about it because they don't have to deal with it, paying costumers have to deal with it and are complaining about it not pirates. Hell its probably making pirates happier because it makes it easier to download the torrents now that more people are willing to upload/download them.

RE: ok
By defter on 9/22/2008 2:25:07 AM , Rating: 5
That's why DRM system is flawed, it's just making life harder for ordinary users but doesn't stop piracy. So one have two options:

1. buy a game, live with stupid restictions, remember to uninstall it when you upgrade, remember to call some tech support number if your HDD died, etc...

2. download a torrent for free, you miss some online content, but you never have to care about activations and upgrading.

Basically they are offering less and charging much more for it.

RE: ok
By omnicronx on 9/22/08, Rating: 0
RE: ok
By AgentPromo on 9/22/2008 8:55:15 AM , Rating: 5
Be that as it may, and I agree with you, human nature is what it is. Truth is, some people do not equate stealing online torrents of video games with something like an actual theft from say, Best Buy.

The justifications are many, and for each justification there is some level of truth. A few:

1. The free product is better than the paid product. There is some truth to that in that you dont have the DRM, and from the article we, the consumers, are obviously beta testing the DRM scheme for EA.

2. "I dont want to buy it without trying it". Again, some truth. I dont want to spend $50 on something that will be a piece of crap, its happened too many times. So, people will pirate to test it out and then some set of them will go and buy it. That said, every game released should have a fully functional demo of at least a few representative levels of content. A spore demo would be nice that gives you say, 30 min at each state to experiment.

3. "I would never buy this game anyways". Maybe, maybe not. But again, it may be true too and some people just want to kill some time and screw around without a $50 investment.

Point is, being judgmental is not going to help. People's rationalization's will exist whether we like it or not. The point with Spore is that they are making it EASIER to rationalize stealing for those that would already otherwise be inclined for one of the reasons above. Make a good demo, compelling content, and reasonable DRM, and you would not have this backlash in the community.

I for one will not buy this game, but I will not pirate it either. Then again, I dont buy games that are not on Steam, as I find that my perfect tradeoff platform between DRM, piracy and flexibility to move PC to PC without consequence.

RE: ok
By jtesoro on 9/22/2008 9:26:45 AM , Rating: 2
Now if only Steam had an aftermarket, I'd probably make real use of it. I bought Half Life 2 on CDs, and have been holding off on Episodes 1 and 2 because I won't have options if I buy it off Steam.

RE: ok
By Homerboy on 9/22/2008 9:43:13 AM , Rating: 3
so you'd get that kick-ass resell value of $5?

RE: ok
By jtesoro on 9/22/2008 11:00:47 AM , Rating: 2
For EP1 and EP2, that's actually an excellent point!

RE: ok
By WalksTheWalk on 9/22/2008 1:30:31 PM , Rating: 3
That's why I opted to buy the Orange Box for Xbox 360 even though I owned the PC version of HL2 & EP1. Operating systems and compatibility may come and go, but as long as I have a working 360 I can play it. The problem may be finding a working 360 down the road though. :)

RE: ok
By TreeDude62 on 9/22/2008 9:01:27 AM , Rating: 3
The point is that the DRM did not even slow down the pirates. It was cracked and uploaded on day 1. This proves DRM is unnecessary and does nothing to stop pirates. In this situation it is only causing more people to pirate so they don't have to deal with this activation crap.

This is also why I don't buy EA games on the PC anymore. I don't pirate them either though. There are plenty of other games to entertain me.

RE: ok
By bohhad on 9/22/2008 9:18:22 AM , Rating: 3
it was actually cracked and uploaded before day one

RE: ok
By jtesoro on 9/22/2008 9:44:54 AM , Rating: 2
The concerns people have here are valid, and I'm guessing that EA have thought through most of them already. Regardless of what their public statements say, I think that they realize that won't stop the tech-savvy and those who know enough to download the game off torrents. They will stop casual pirates though, and by their estimation, it is worth it to lose some legitimate buyers for this.

People don't have to agree with it, and it may not work out right in the end, but that's probably why they keep putting DRM in their products.

RE: ok
By Globemaster on 9/22/2008 9:51:08 AM , Rating: 5
How long will it take companies to understand that people who are willing to pay will pay and people who steal will steal, regardless of what DRM they implement. To defeat it, all that is required is for one group of hackers to crack it and then it will be everywhere for free anyway - and this always happens.

All odious DRM like this does is cause some people who want to be law abiding and would otherwise pay to steal it so they don't get the DRM on their machine. I actually know someone who bought a copy, but won't install it and is waiting to download an illegal cracked version. He wanted to pay for it, but doesn't want the DRM on his machine. Talk about causing the very problem you're trying to prevent! Idiots!!!!!

RE: ok
By jtesoro on 9/22/2008 11:12:44 AM , Rating: 2
The information I'd like to have is the number of casual pirates DRM stops and the revenues they represent. This should of course be compared to the revenues that would be lost from legitimate buyers put off by that same DRM.

Much as we'd like to think that companies like EA are crazy, I'm pretty confident that they did their math here. It would be very interesting to see what their spreadsheets look like, particularly their assumptions and the basis for those assumptions.

RE: ok
By kellehair on 9/22/2008 2:17:04 PM , Rating: 1
What's a casual pirate? Pirating games is fairly easy but the average user can barely send email as it is.

RE: ok
By jtesoro on 9/23/2008 11:00:47 AM , Rating: 2
A casual pirate is someone who isn't tech savvy enough to get around relatively "basic" obstacles placed in their way to prevent piracy. For example, those who don't know enough or can't be bothered to get around a CD-check upon game startup. That isn't a technical description, but maybe you get the idea.

I first saw the term used in an article years ago. If I recall right, the example given was that people often use one valid CD of Windows (98?) for all their PCs, and this CD got passed around to their friends and family. When Windows XP came out, people still tried to install it on multiple PCs. When Windows Product Activation prevented this, they just thought "I guess I shouldn't be doing that" and bought legitimate copies instead.

So for some companies (probably including EA), the purpose of DRM is to prevent that kind of piracy. The premise is that the additional revenue gained there more than offsets the losses incurred by the ill-will that DRM generates.

RE: ok
By robinthakur on 9/22/2008 9:06:03 AM , Rating: 2
I agree with you, and I have simply not purchased the game to register my disatisfaction HOWEVER, downloading it from a torrent is so easy (easier than going out to buy it) that it is actually a viable option for alot of people as we are seeing. Theft is never justified, but you can see the effects of the DRM on weak-willed individuals.

However, now EA will be allowing you to de-authorise machines this effectively clears up the limit, so I might be buying a copy in the future after all (Once this is implemented) I'm pleased that EA have actually listened in this case and also that the pressure from people not buying the game has clearly been felt.

RE: ok
By inighthawki on 9/22/2008 10:21:32 AM , Rating: 2
It always seems to me that the people who don't pirate do not really understand the whole scene. People don't pirate because theyre *ssholes and want the studios to go crash and burn, or making music artists go out of business, it simply isn't true. Most pirates out there do it for a couple reasons

1) They aren't gonna buy it anyway. Some people argue that this may or may not be true, its not. If you were definately NOT going to buy it, you weren't. If you were thinking about it, it's slightly different. Some of them do not HAVE an extra $50 here and there to buy it anyways. If you can find a way of building a replica of a product without buying it, is there a problem with that? Why pay when u can replicate.

2) It is extremely inconvenient for some of those who go to large lan parties, especially with friends. It is terribly hard to get a select group of people to buy specific games, especially if they aren't sure if they will like it and/or want to play. If you want to get your friends to try and play TF2, for example, why make them pay when they might not like it?

3) DRM, as it may be, is one of the GREATEST reasons pirates use to get stuff. One thing i don't understand is, why are the game studios SO very naive? From my experience, every time a game is released with so called "unbreakable" protection, it sells like crap and the pirates find a way around it anyway. Some of the games with little copy protection end up being some of the best sellers (UT2004 and CoD4 for example both have unprotected EXEs (mp for cod4 at least) and are two of the top selling games).

4) If a game sucks, and you just want to try it out or play it once, it's not worth what the devs sell it for to most people. If you want a good game that sells well and you want people to pay $50, make it GOOD. Some of the studios these days try to make crappy games which barely justify $20 these days. And i don't mean super awesome special graphics, good GAMEPLAY. From what I heard of crysis, the $50 justifies the fact that it looks pretty.

As for me, I BUY the games i feel are acceptable of being purchased. And those also happen to be the ones i play about 100x more than the rest.

RE: ok
By wempa on 9/22/2008 12:25:30 PM , Rating: 2
I didn't see anywhere in his post where he said HE downloads games. He's just stating that you don't have to deal with this DRM hassle if you download it. Something is seriously flawed when the legitimate customers are MORE inconvenienced than the pirates. And please tell me WHY people keep saying that the only people complaining about the DRM are pirates. This is nonsense. The pirates get their own DRM-free game by downloading it. The people complaining are mostly the ones that WANT to support the company and reward the developers who put the hard work into the game, but absolutely hate having to put up with some restrictive nonsense.

RE: ok
By Regs on 9/22/2008 3:15:27 PM , Rating: 1
Why you got rated down, I don't know, I completely agree. I'm now convinced that DailyTech is infested with a bunch of broke college students.

Then again, even college kids should know how modern economics works. They just wake up everyday pissed wondering why their water isn't clean, the roads are always congested, and their health insurance got cancelled.

RE: ok
By inighthawki on 9/22/2008 6:35:28 PM , Rating: 2
you are inconceivably ignorant for thinking that pirating has anything to do with people not understanding economics, OR the fact that pirating video games, of all things, has a large impact on our roads, health care, or water supply. The transition from consumers to game studios to any of those other sources are minimal, let alone the number of pirates who never planned on buying the game anyway. Invalid argument on your side sir.

RE: ok
By tmouse on 9/23/2008 8:21:50 AM , Rating: 2
And you sir are equally inconceivably ignorant. Why do you think you are entitled to something you do not pay for? Do pirates hurt the gaming industry, of course. It is equally foolish to truly believe the majority of people who illegally download copyrighted material have no interest in purchasing it. The vast majority also do not buy it after they try it, they simply justify their actions by convincing themselves “it’s not worth it”. No one guarantees complete satisfaction, that’s why you pay before you go to a play, movie or concert (this goes for everything but I do not want to get sidetracked into the loss of physical items like food ect). If you get disappointed it is your right to not support it with future purchases, but NOT your right to experience it for free. The industry is moving away from making any physical material that can even be downloaded, therefore copied. Sooner or later everything will end up being played on their servers and they will have total control. Then we can all get shafted, when we have to pay for every song, game or movie every time we listen, play or watch them, there will be no digital choice.

RE: ok
By inighthawki on 9/23/2008 9:39:01 AM , Rating: 2
The fact of the matter is that pirates DO NOT hurt the industry, this is something that the developers are too ignorant to see. A vast vast majority of pirates do not ever plan on buying the games, and this is the truth, believe it if you want, and as a result, pirating a game only ends up increasing the popularity of a game, and generating a general advertisement.

A movie, i can understand your general logic; however, the concept is different. In a movie, you already have a full understanding of the plot/storyline, setting, etc which can determine ahead of time whether or not you will like it. And if you waste your money, then so be it, you made a dumb mistake. I rarely spend any of my money to go see a movie, and in fact, the dark knight was the last movie i spent my money to see in years, and it was worth it, i paid money for something i wanted!
A concert on the other hand, not even in the same spectrum. The people who go to a concert know well ahead of time the content of what they're paying for, so its hard to say that you didn't know it wouldn't have been good, etc.

Putting all of their games on servers would be a totally idiotic approach to stopping pirates, because history shows that the games with the most protection tend to sell the least. (Star force protected games, spore, mass effect...)

If the developers are truly worried about their games, they would design better games, and better populate their online servers so people who want to play need a valid serial key, and leave those who don't care alone, because they aren't really hurting anything.

RE: ok
By Regs on 9/23/2008 10:45:11 AM , Rating: 2
You have to focus on the big picture.

You think pirates are not potential buyers, Why? It's called opportunity costs. You sacrifice one good for another. We do this everyday routinely without even thinking about it. I do not go out everyday and buy new cloths because I know I have to buy food so I can live. I have to first satisfy the (Maslow's) hierarchy of needs. Once I have established this, I then have to spend 60 dollars on gas to I can get to work each day. So lets say I drive less one day of the week (like Sunday) and drink a few less beers during a Giants game. In three weeks I'll have enough money to buy Spore or Fall Out 3.

But here's the bargain!!! I don't have to give up anything if I pirate the game. What would you do? " *sniffles* I'm wasn't going to buy the game anyway, I'm too busy eating cheese doodles and drinking beer on Sunday"

You fail to comprehend the laws of economics. You fail to see the big picture. You will continue to fail in major corporations and businesses if you continue to think without proper ethics and logic.

RE: ok
By inighthawki on 9/23/2008 5:06:11 PM , Rating: 2
That may be true for some people, but i, unlike some people, don't waste my money on crap like that, and i surely don't drive my car ANY more than necessary. In fact 99% of the time my friends ask if i want to go anywhere, i say no because i'm too cheap to spend it. The fact of the matter is, I wasn't going to buy the game, I don't buy a lot of extra crap, and I 3/4 the stuff isn't worth the asking price.

RE: ok
By mmntech on 9/22/2008 9:27:15 AM , Rating: 2
There's a third option. Don't play the game at all.

I agree though that something needs to be done about DRM. As I've said before, I think the restrictions should be listed on the back of a game's package for people to see before they buy. The current system is deceptive. These people had no idea there was a three install limit until they bought the game and read the EULA, at which point it's too late to return it.

I also want EA to explain to me why it counted as one of your three installs each time you reinstalled the game on the same system with the same OS key. How is that necessary to stop piracy? Maybe I'm being ignorant and they know something I don't. However, I'm calling shenanigans on EA and every other publisher out there for this crap. Thankfully, this isn't a problem with game consoles, at least as long as disc media reigns supreme. I just can't make copies of the disc but at least the game doesn't harass or spy on me.

RE: ok
By hadifa on 9/22/2008 6:27:35 PM , Rating: 2
What about the third option?

3- Buy the game and download the torrent.

The main problem with this can be access to upgrades/patches and online/additional content while you have a legit game.

RE: ok
By Maximilian on 9/22/2008 2:32:42 AM , Rating: 2
Yeah, what sc3252 said, the core problem behind DRM is still there. Its the casual gamer that will likely be affected by it, real gamers are too smart to be suckered into any DRM scheme and i dont think the casual gamer will remember to de-authorize their game anyways.

EA suck.

RE: ok
By Iger on 9/22/2008 4:35:20 AM , Rating: 2
While it was easy to agree with "EA suck" punchline before - I'm finding it much harder now, that they've brought us Mass Effect... :)

Still DRM is a really strange solution... Yes, 5 simultaneous activations is easier than 3, but a torrent is... hassle-free and last time I checked, this should have been a property of a _purchased_ product, eh?

RE: ok
By TrogdorJW on 9/22/2008 5:58:49 AM , Rating: 2
You know, as great as Mass Effect is, Spore is a lousy game. Okay, I know - millions of The Sims users will love it. Me, I've only played it for a few hours and have reaffirmed my belief that Will Wright is totally overrated. Anyone want to buy a slightly used copy of Spoor? Two installations remaining, and some time in the future I can hopefully deactivate the current one....

RE: ok
By saiga6360 on 9/22/2008 10:41:26 AM , Rating: 2
Mass Effect is a mediocre game that doesn't even touch past Bioware efforts on the PC. Spore is not much of a game at all. Neat concepts, bad execution. Both games suffered from overblown hype.

RE: ok
By Pirks on 9/22/08, Rating: 0
RE: ok
By Runiteshark on 9/22/2008 10:45:25 AM , Rating: 2

Saying kid makes me feel superior too.

I flex my e-muscles on the internets.

RE: ok
By Pirks on 9/22/2008 4:34:50 PM , Rating: 2
You should've been flexing your brain instead

RE: ok
By CascadingDarkness on 9/22/2008 12:45:12 PM , Rating: 2
Great of you to ignore the point of the article. That these DRM practices hurt the paying consumer, and they won't stand for it.

The side note from other related information is that this DRM scheme did very little to stop piracy, and may have actually encouraged it.

Side Note: you likely shouldn't state "You suck, idiot,..." in the same post you tell someone "...kid. Stop whining, grow up."

RE: ok
By Pirks on 9/22/2008 3:13:32 PM , Rating: 2
Kids could be idiots too, did you know that?

It's not DRM practices that hurt consumers, it's pirates who hurt them because pirates are the _primary_ _reason_ why DRM exists. I thought it was obvious enough.

RE: ok
By inighthawki on 9/22/2008 6:39:44 PM , Rating: 2
You sound like a kid yourself, ya idiot...

but besides that, despite the fact that DRM may indeed be a result of pirates, its the WRONG result. DRM mostly affects paying customers. Pirates know eays ways around these things, but the game studios REFUSE to accept common sense and continue to implement higher and higher standards for their DRM tech, and eventually people complain, and 99% of those who complain are paying customers

RE: ok
By Pirks on 9/22/2008 6:43:38 PM , Rating: 2
If DRM is a WRONG result of piracy, what do you think should the RIGHT result be?

RE: ok
By inighthawki on 9/23/2008 9:41:52 AM , Rating: 2
I'm not saying get rid of it 100%, a simple cd check and valid serial to install/play online would be sufficient. Those developers who make good games and have a rich online community would strive with people willing to pay for a serial, and single-player only games could easily be solved by a lengthy and worth-while campaign, or a lowered retail price. Many eople aren't willing to pay $50 for a game that they will beat in 5 hours that has no replay value.

RE: ok
By Pirks on 9/23/2008 11:39:29 AM , Rating: 2
Many people aren't willing to pay $50 for a game that they will beat in 5 hours that has no replay value
If they don't like the game, they should not buy it and they should not play it. If they start PIRATING and PLAYING it - then they DESERVE DRM. Simple economics. No pirates - no DRM, because the market is FAIR in this case. Don't like the game - DON'T DOWNLOAD IT AND DON'T PLAY IT! I thought it was obvious.

RE: ok
By inighthawki on 9/23/2008 5:08:28 PM , Rating: 2
But if the large studios were able to see outside the large piles of cash they're already getting WITH pirating, they'd be able to realize that pirates aren't being even slightly affected by all the DRM crap they put in, and it's only hurting the real consumers. EA states that most of the people complaining about spore are pirates, but get real! pirates don't even have DRM to complain about! it was already cracked!

RE: ok
By Pirks on 9/23/2008 5:13:53 PM , Rating: 2
Well, if you bought your game legally, there's no reason for you to complain about DRM. Hence if you complain - you must be a pirate. Simple logic.

RE: ok
By Don Tonino on 9/22/2008 7:59:29 AM , Rating: 2
Its all fine and dandy when you have one game, but what happens when they have 20+ games out with this. having to uninstall every single game is really annoying, and I can imagine thinking, sh*t I forgot to uninstall so and so before the format.

Totally agree - and what if the HDD dies taking all data with it? I find quite insulting to tie down a legitimate owner of the game with having to go through all this...

Or think if your system becomes REALLY unstable, as sometimes can happen for whatever reason you could think of. I guess it has happened to many, the system getting so screwed up it was just easier to format everything and spend a couple hours setting everything back. Now, you'd have to go through disinstalling any bit of software that were happen to be under this DRM scheme, adding more wasted time.

It's like being asked to forget all about a book whenever I want to read it again...

RE: ok
By DarkElfa on 9/22/2008 9:08:18 AM , Rating: 2
"You're DRM isn't protecting you from Jack-Squat EA, get a large and obvious clue. The guy that hacked you're Crysis Warhead did it in 15 minutes.


So to recap, you are only pissing off the people who still buy you're games and you aren't stopping pirates from cracking them. You're DRM is ULTIMATE EPIC FAIL.

EA-0, Pirates-9999999999....

RE: ok
By Pirks on 9/22/2008 10:37:50 AM , Rating: 1
EA-0, Pirates-9999999999
No, idiot, it's not about EA, it's like this:

screwed PC gamers - 0

happy console gamers enjoying studios fleeing from pirate-infested PC into greener console pastures - 999999999999999

And EA? EA doesn't give a f*ck about platforms, they sell wherever it's not infested by pirates. If people pirate games on PC - they _will_ buy console and pay for games on console, sooner or later. Simple economics, you know.

RE: ok
By The0ne on 9/22/2008 3:34:07 PM , Rating: 2
Consoles have hacks :O What are you implying? And how many games are release on consoles compare to PC? Now do that math of the pirated copies and it's more severe.

RE: ok
By Pirks on 9/22/2008 3:55:48 PM , Rating: 2
What hack does PS3 have?

RE: ok
By The0ne on 9/23/2008 2:55:59 PM , Rating: 2
you mean something like this?

or being able to run another OS for it and such? Again, what's your point? It's a matter of time before more and more comes out for PS3 and others. And it seems you're pointing out PS3 as though it's immune to mods and hacks *roll eyes*

Your point of consoles being pirated-free is laughable. Give it up.

RE: ok
By Pirks on 9/23/2008 4:07:15 PM , Rating: 2
you mean something like this?
Of course not. I mean real PS3 mods that allow you to run games downloaded from torrents, and also games themselves. Are there any PS3 games on torrents? No? Then it's time for you to crawl back under your rock. Come back when you crack your PS3 so that it can run torrented games.

RE: ok
By The0ne on 9/23/2008 6:36:08 PM , Rating: 2
hahaha so let me get this straight. You stated that "consoles" have pirated free with no mention of PS3 and I've replied in general that consoles do and you get piss and throw PS3 at me? Yes, PS3 doesn't have copied games released by reputable groups yet but as I've said it's only a matter of time. They are on Blu-ray and since the associated cost is substantially higher it might not be as widespread. But do you seriously think it's pirated free, I don't think so.

The question here is why don't you state PSP, Wii, Xbox and so forth in your arguments seeing as how you said "consoles?" Ah...that's that I thought

Again, hahaha

RE: ok
By inighthawki on 9/23/2008 7:19:54 PM , Rating: 2
Well TheOne, he CLEARLY was limiting the term 'console' to mean PS3, but in all seriousness, almost every console out there has hacks to play "backups", or pirated games if you so choose to call them. As stated by TheOne, blu ray makes the cost of pirating almost meaningless, since the cost of the blu ray burner and media would outweigh the cost of games to begin with, it's not a very viable option for most pirates. Wii, PSP, 360, DS etc, they all have hacks allowing them to do these kinds of things. PCs are not alone, its just not as widely known how to pirate games for consoles. It'll eventually get there though.

The blu-ray cost can also be overcome by programming a backup loader to load from a hard drive, and there are drive hacks for the PS3 to get large storage hard drives, so that would be a good approach for these people.

RE: ok
By Pirks on 9/23/2008 7:34:33 PM , Rating: 1
its just not as widely known how to pirate games for consoles
That's why PC games are going down compared to console games. Too much piracy COMPARED to consoles, because it's actually really HARDER to pirate console games.

RE: ok
By Pirks on 9/23/2008 7:21:18 PM , Rating: 1
Yeah, hahaha about your delusions of piracy infested consoles. Occasional and rather rare piracy on consoles is NOWHERE NEAR the scale of ubiquitous and pandemic PC piracy, and PS3 is the proof of that. That's why studios flee in droves from high budget PC exclusives and onto consoles, that's why DRM is here with us.

RE: ok
By inighthawki on 9/23/2008 9:09:53 PM , Rating: 2
If developers stop making PC games altogether, they're not only losing large market share, but opening up the gate to increased efforts for piracy on consoles. If the die hard pirates want to play a game, it's not going to matter whether they get it on a console if that's all there is. $50 is $50 (unless it's $60, then it's $60) no matter where you spend it. And $50 on a console, or shall i say, $60, is the same, or worse, than on a pc. What's necessary to pirate games on a console? Well there are two options.
1)Buy a modchip, roughly $30-$50 depending on the chip, and a little more can get you a solderless one.
2)Softmod. Although equally, if not MORE dangerous than a modchip, it can eventually get done from pretty much any state, they just need to find the exploit first.

RE: ok
By Pirks on 9/23/2008 9:15:55 PM , Rating: 1
That's the major point - you have to mod your console, hack it and do some tricky stuff, which is NOT easy for most people. While on PC you don't have to do practically anything, just download the game from torrent and hit "Play" - see any difference now? With this important difference between PC and consoles it should be obvious for you that console piracy is bound to be much smaller than PC one. From this fact we have all the consequences - studios moving from PC exclusives to consoles and so on.

Clueless CEOs
By KashGarinn on 9/22/2008 6:05:05 AM , Rating: 2
Without the ability to protect our work from piracy, developers across the entire game industry will eventually stop investing time and money in PC titles.

They didn't protect their work from piracy with their DRM, it was pirated the same day it came out. Their DRM ONLY ANNOYS LEGITIMATE USERS - shame capitalizing this on dailytech won't get the message across.

RE: Clueless CEOs
By omnicronx on 9/22/2008 8:40:48 AM , Rating: 2
What does the DRM employed for this game have to do with the day it got ripped? Products get shipped out long before the release date, all it takes it one person to take a copy and for it to get into the wrong hands.

RE: Clueless CEOs
By saiga6360 on 9/22/2008 10:34:50 AM , Rating: 2
I guess you are proving his point. It was futile effort that only annoyed the legit customers. Way to go EA.

RE: Clueless CEOs
By nycromes on 9/22/2008 10:28:19 AM , Rating: 2
Well, by that logic, I hope you don't lock your car doors either. I mean the thief can just break the window so even though you locked your doors, it doesn't prevent theft.

Let me say this, I bought this game and I don't like the DRM scheme at all. Even knowing that, I cannot fault a company for trying to protect it's games from theft, no matter how hopeless that effort is.

Bottom line, things like this will never go away until products are not pirated, and things like this cause people to pirate. What came first though? Pirating, not DRM. I blame the pirates for hurting legitimate users more than the companies. Yes, EA decided to put this form of restrictive DRM on this product, but it would not have been necessary if it were not for pirates stealing their products.

You may commence the down rating, I attacked the poor pirates.

RE: Clueless CEOs
By garagetinkerer on 9/22/2008 11:00:47 AM , Rating: 2
I respect your point of view that you think pirates are the root cause of the trouble(though i think otherwise).

The car example is mighty, how do i say this politely, "inapt!" Consider this... You go to buy a pair of shoes(assume size 11), would you like to be sold size 10 or 9, if they do not have the model you like in your size??? I think not. That is why the EA customers(both prospective and existing) are crying foul. They are finding, that they are being stuffed with something, which they did not want in the first place.

Trust me, this isn't going to go away. They want you to buy the same Cd's, DVD's, Blu-Rays again and again. Why do you think they are fighting fair use rights of individuals??? It is GREED...

RE: Clueless CEOs
By wempa on 9/22/2008 12:46:58 PM , Rating: 2
This comment is idiotic. Nobody is complaining that EA is trying to protect its game. They are complaining because of how ridiculously restrictive the DRM scheme is. It is a major burden on the legitimate paying customer if they use up their 3 installations for whatever reason. As people have mentioned before, PC gamers often make many significant upgrades to their PCs in a short period of time. Also, the 3 installation limit seriously kills the resale market too. I know a lot of people who buy a game and then sell it at a discount when they aren't interested in playing it anymore. That won't be possible with this game.

RE: Clueless CEOs
By theslug on 9/22/2008 6:12:06 PM , Rating: 2
The problem is that EA has effectively punished legitimate paying customers for the actions of pirates. How is this fair?

By feelingshorter on 9/22/2008 5:06:47 AM , Rating: 5
Spores jumped to amazon's top seller's list fairly quickly so I'd think that a lot of the reviews on there are from real buyers and not pirates.

I was worried originally since i upgrade my PC every 1.5-2 years and my laptop usually even quicker (basically when the batt no longer holds a charge its upgrade time). So just installing it on two computers, you can run out of the 3 installs quick. Especially if your due to upgrade just mere months after you installed the game on both the laptop/desktop. Having to call in to ask permission to use a game i bought in the first place is retarded. They should have made it so that their servers only allow one CD key logged on at a time.

What EA was trying to do with the one account thing is to force families to buy multiple copies. Imagine if you have a family of 3 kids, do you buy 3 copies of spores for 150 or a PS3 game that all of the kids can play/share? EA's logic is clouded by sheer greed more so than stupidity.

Our country is built on the idea that your innocent until proven guilty. What EA did is assume everyone is guilty of piracy. All the people did on amazon reviews was stand up for their rights.

Well EA, when you piss on people's faces, expect them to get pissed. EA wants for proof that their REAL customers are pissed? What? A picture of the game i bought with my screen name written on it before they believe that I'm a customer? Not some pirate that downloaded the game and come online to complain? Hell, if i didn't spend money on it i wouldn't be so mad.

Also, for once, the pirates have a pretty good reason to pirate the game. Since i bought my game from newegg, it was troublesome for me to return it, otherwise it would have been returned.

EA, your EPIC GREED . But with the new restrictions, i guess i can live with it. Not that ill be buying EA games again anytime soon.

By NINaudio on 9/22/2008 8:26:07 AM , Rating: 2
But with the new restrictions, i guess i can live with it.

This is what they want people to think. "Gee, the drm scheme still stinks, but it's better than before." The more they can get people to "live with" things like this the more they can push it. Live with it on enough games for a while and it becomes the accpeted norm.

By Targon on 9/22/2008 8:59:40 AM , Rating: 2
Spore jumped up fairly quickly because of the huge amount of hype, and because the PC game market has been stagnant for a while now.

Spore really needs a LOT more work when it comes to the strategy end of it(once you are in the tribal stage and beyond). Seriously, there was a ton of potential to get the more serious gamers into the game, but the original "Civilization" game, not even talking about 2, 3, or 4 has a better strategy layer.

There is also no real "evolution" to be done once you are into the tribal stage, so there isn't any excitement to playing the later stages with different creature types. This is why EA is worried about sales NOW, because the people over there KNOW that the game just won't have the longevity that The Sims had. Unless they get that strategy layer evolved, Spore will fade out quickly.

Then again, the game seems like it was designed so that an 8 year old could play it without any complaints from parents. If you thought The Sims seemed like it was for a younger audience, Spore is for an even younger audience.

By NullSubroutine on 9/22/2008 12:52:15 AM , Rating: 2
Kinda late to close the barn door after the horses are out, no?

RE: Sooo
By xxsk8er101xx on 9/22/2008 1:01:10 AM , Rating: 2
no because they can update the game via online updates and patches. Plus they will likely update it in the next batch of disks.

RE: Sooo
By kelmon on 9/22/2008 3:50:37 AM , Rating: 2
Correct. The damage has been done and only removing the silly DRM scheme entirely will be acceptable. I have no problem with copy protection on the disk and game codes but needing to authenticate with a server to play the game is going too far. The system might work fine most of the time but my experiences with other such systems, like bloody Windows Genuine Advantage, shows that these things can go wrong and it's a burden on the customer.

I rather hope that Spore flops because of this, given all the hype and investment made into the title, so that such DRM systems are abandoned immediately. Unfortunately, I suspect that is too much to hope for.

EA doesn't get it
By pauldovi on 9/22/2008 9:14:49 AM , Rating: 2
3 or 5 install limits or hell even 1000 install limits is still an install limitation on software that I have purchased. It becomes a huge hassle after you hit that limit having to call the customer support and speak to a foreigner try to read you a new 26 digit key.

I won't be happy until there is no DRM. I am not going to purchase software and have a harder time using it then the guy who stole it.

I purchased my copy of Crysi on EALink, guess what, I can't launch it from anything but EALink. Therefore, I cannot choose between 32/64 bit and DX9/DX10 so I have to play at the default 32bit/DX9. My friend laughs at me as he plays his pirated copy in whatever mode he wants.

I purchased Flight Simulator X and the expansion pack. My friend laughs at me while I call Microsoft Product Activation to get their approval for activation of the software while he is already flying around in a jet on his pirated copy.


DRM doesn't work, period. It costs the developers money to implement. It pisses off the legitimate customers, and it doesn't stop anyone from copying the software.

The best way to fight piracy is with exclusive online content. For example, multiplayer. Thus it is easy to associate a CD key with an online account, making it very difficult to play without a legitimate key. You don't hear Blizzard complaining about piracy of WOW...... You don't hear EA complaining about piracy of BF2 / 2142......

RE: EA doesn't get it
By bohhad on 9/22/2008 9:23:27 AM , Rating: 2
im with you, as long as it includes drm screwing my system up, stopping me from using other legitimate, purchased software (alcohol 120 namely), i won't buy it.

ea, you are shooting yourself in the foot. please stop

By wavetrex on 9/22/2008 1:32:49 AM , Rating: 3
The deauthorization is the key to problem with changing hardware/windows reinstall, etc.

Instead of 3 authorizations EVER, now you have 5 at the SAME TIME.

MUCH better !

Noise from game pirates?
By xNIBx on 9/22/2008 8:06:00 AM , Rating: 2
Are they completely retarded? Why would game pirates care about the drm? The pirated version of spore came out 2 days before the game was released and could be installed in an infinite amount of pcs without any problem.

Drm only punishes legit customers.

By iFX on 9/22/2008 8:16:10 AM , Rating: 2
Are you reading this EA? You have annoyed gamers to an extent that many people are just ignoring your products altogether. I am one of those people.

Still won't buy Spore
By Bateluer on 9/22/2008 8:52:32 AM , Rating: 2
The DRM scheme is a big factor in why I won't buy it, perhaps the biggest, even with EA loosening reins. The fact that there are still reins on a product that I legitimately purchased is almost enough to get me to boycott the product.

But, Spore is shaping up to be a lousy, dumbed down, consolized game suitable only for Sims players. Such a let down.

Now, if upcoming Bioware titles, like Dragon Age, include the SecuROM malware, then I will be really pissed.

Anyone want to purchase billboard space outside of EA's HQ for anti-DRM malware ads?

By Hieyeck on 9/22/2008 9:48:01 AM , Rating: 2
You know, we should actually ALL be happy about this - EA is actually listening somewhat. With this update, they've covered practically 99.9% of legitimate use. Setup is no more annoying than the days of just CD keys, DRM while playing/loading is not even noticable.

Don't get me wrong, I'm still VEHEMENTLY against intrustive DRM (see StarForce). The only thing that's possibly intrusive for me is calling in, and only if that takes more than 5 minutes... They still have the right to try to protect their property from copyright violations (pointless-ness aside).

Baby steps, people, baby steps.

noise from game pirates?
By Belard on 9/22/2008 10:54:38 AM , Rating: 2
What is this moron talking about?

The DRM is to stop piracy?! Let's see... SPORE was available for pirates before the game came out, has no DRM/rootkit built in. And because YOU (or any other company) that installs software that isn't removable (or easily removable) is typical of a trojan or virus action.

DRM doesn't STOP pirates! You ONLY hurt and crimminalize your own customers. Yes, put in basic anti-piracy measures that'll make it difficult for "billy" to make a copy for friends. No big deal... because the simplest and oldest anti-piracy trick is no worse than your latest DRM junk.

Also... having to put in the disc is never fun... it does reduce play in my book. My UT games don't require a disc (and when they did - until Epic came out with a patch, I'd cracked the PAID for game so I didn't need the disc).

I've bought 4 games in the past 3 weeks... 1 of them requires the disc ;(

Stop the DRM... Apple has... its a no-win situation that makes life harder for your customers. How about the other HIGHLY recommended game called BioShock. I so wanted to buy that game for $50... Nope. Never bought it, never will. Plenty of people have DL the hacked version without any problems. I don't have the game nor the demo on my PC.

Save your selves some wasted money and effort... and less tech support problems when your DRM kills a computers.

"Spreading the rumors, it's very easy because the people who write about Apple want that story, and you can claim its credible because you spoke to someone at Apple." -- Investment guru Jim Cramer
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