Print 110 comment(s) - last by murcHADA.. on Jun 15 at 2:48 AM

Xbox 360 ban message detailing the user's violation of Microsoft terms of service. (Source: Xbox-Scene)
Microsoft's Xbox 360 now able to sniff out illegitimate copies of games

More than a year has passed since the release of the Xbox 360 DVD-ROM firmware hack to allow the play of backup games and bootleg copies. Those with hacked firmware had the ability to play copied games, mostly burned onto dual-layer DVD recordable discs, even online Xbox Live.

For a while, it seemed that such firmware modifications were undetectable by Microsoft – but that appears to have all changed with the latest Xbox 360 system software released last week.

Word came from the Xbox 360 hacking community that the Spring Update may have the ability to detect those who were playing copied games. More specifically, the system software would be able to determine the legitimacy of the disc in the DVD drive, not necessarily targeting any specific method of modification.

As a pre-emptive measure, hackers released updated disc drive firmware introducing various features, such as disc jitter, in an effort to further the exploit. Such efforts, however, appear to be all for naught, as report on Xbox-Scene indicates that Microsoft is now banning from Xbox Live users with modified DVD-ROM drives, regardless of firmware version.

The banning measures appear to have started alongside the release of the Halo 3 beta, perhaps in what is best described as a crackdown on Crackdown bootlegged copies that contained Halo 3 beta access. Just as it did during the original Xbox days, Microsoft is permanently banning modified consoles from connecting to Xbox Live, but not the user account.

Microsoft acknowledges its new initiative with an entry in its Gamerscore Blog: “As part of our commitment to our members, we do not allow people that we have detected to have modified their console to connect to Live. This is an important part of our efforts to try and maintain a fair gaming environment for the large majority of gamers that play by the rules. This topic is more important than ever given the recent release of the Halo 3 beta.”

The blog continues, “As a result, some consumers that try to login to Live who we detect have illegally modified their console will get an error code (Status Code: Z: 8015 - 190D) when trying to connect to the service. These users will not have their account automatically banned from LIVE, but they will no longer be able to access the service from the console they modified. We have stated in the past that customers can only enjoy access to the Xbox LIVE community through the use of a genuine, unmodified, Xbox console and we will continue to enforce this rule to ensure the integrity of our service, the protection of our partners and the benefits of our users.”

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Tough love
By Bonrock on 5/18/2007 3:28:01 AM , Rating: 5
I'm sure plenty of people will complain about this, but they really shouldn't. Pay for your damn games and you won't have any problems. It's as simple as that. And I don't want to hear any whining about how expensive games are. Video games are NOT a necessity. If you can't afford them, find a less expensive hobby.

The only people who have any right to be upset about this are the three people in the world who actually make backup copies of their games for legitimate reasons.

RE: Tough love
By bunnyfubbles on 5/18/2007 4:04:49 AM , Rating: 2
while not the perfect solution you could always buy a backup console for your backups, only breakout the original copy if you want to play on live

RE: Tough love
By tuteja1986 on 5/18/07, Rating: 0
RE: Tough love
By Adahiyast on 5/18/07, Rating: 0
RE: Tough love
By Devo2007 on 5/18/2007 6:41:12 AM , Rating: 2
......and you can't spell either, so you have no right to pick apart someone's grammar.

Back on topic though, I also agree that the modders have no right to be upset about this. Microsoft has long-stated that they can do this, and frankly, they have every right to. If you play backups on your 360, then you're banned from XBox Live -- sounds fair to me.

RE: Tough love
By Adahiyast on 5/23/07, Rating: 0
RE: Tough love
By oneils on 5/25/2007 5:50:34 PM , Rating: 2
embarrassing, not embarressing.

McDonalds = McDondald's

McDonald's also pays quite well

RE: Tough love
By jacarte8 on 5/18/2007 8:51:21 AM , Rating: 3
Also, emoticons are for the weak. Australia should be capitalized, as it is a proper noun.

RE: Tough love
By KaiserCSS on 5/18/2007 9:48:16 AM , Rating: 5
lol, grammar fight.

RE: Tough love
By Spivonious on 5/18/2007 10:00:18 AM , Rating: 1
By your logic, I should be allowed to use someone else's Ferarri, because as a poor entry-level programmer, I can't afford $400,000 cars. It's not my fault, it's Ferarri's for pricing their cars so high!

RE: Tough love
By jadedeath on 5/18/2007 11:35:55 AM , Rating: 1
But if your analogy were true, it wouldn't involve borrowing someone else's Ferarri, it would be stealing it.


RE: Tough love
By Scrogneugneu on 5/18/2007 7:33:23 PM , Rating: 3
More like instantly creating a copy of someone else's Ferrari, so you would end up with a Ferrari you didn't pay for, but nobody lost one.

RE: Tough love
By abhaxus on 5/20/2007 2:10:44 AM , Rating: 2
You could put your stem cells next to someone else's ferrari... and then they could create your very own ferrari! Turns out those 33 aborted fetuses didn't go to waste afterall!

RE: Tough love
By borismkv on 5/18/2007 6:08:04 PM , Rating: 5
I've learned a cool rule. Whenever someone says something like, "By that logic" in a discussion, you can completely ignore everything that follows. That said, I agree that game piracy is a problem, even though I believe that game companies making crappy games that few feel are worth the money they charge for them.

RE: Tough love
By jadedeath on 5/19/2007 12:15:23 AM , Rating: 1
If you don't feel a game is worth it, there are alternatives to outright copying someone elses game.

Like wait until it comes on previously viewed at your local game retailer or movie store, then buy it when it hits it's cheapest price.


RE: Tough love
By ViperROhb34 on 5/18/2007 9:02:57 PM , Rating: 4
Yeah.. Im hearing alot of babies..

I've had ONE SINGLE COPY of my favorite games.. and guess what... I take care of them because I PAID FOR THEM..
If you buy them.. all you have to do it that !!

RE: Tough love
By Christopher1 on 5/20/07, Rating: -1
RE: Tough love
By kmiller1700 on 5/21/2007 2:49:51 PM , Rating: 2
O RLY? how much? I'll give you no dollars for it


RE: Tough love
By nwrigley on 5/22/2007 11:52:44 AM , Rating: 3
You honestly don't believe that there are people in the world who put disks back into their cases as soon as they are done?

I have also never scratched a game enough that it wouldn't play.

RE: Tough love
By jadedeath on 5/18/07, Rating: 0
RE: Tough love
By othercents on 5/18/2007 11:55:12 AM , Rating: 5
There are many parents that backup their games because every time their child touches the disc it gets scratched. Even if you tell your child that they can not play without supervision they still will try and scratch the game or DVD or anything else that could be damaged.

To get away from this it would be best if every game or movie had the ability to get a new copy if the old copy quits working. You send the old copy in and they verify the old copy and send you a new copy (with a minimal fee IE. $1 or $2). Then the only people hacking stuff will be those who are actually trying to steal crap.


RE: Tough love
By christojojo on 5/18/2007 1:08:21 PM , Rating: 3
I agree my youngest, now 11, used to pull apart VHS tapes with scary regularity. (Yes, I used child protection locks and tried to hide them; but as most parents will tell you that only works with adults not determined 3yr olds.) He ruined countless dvds, before, he grew up enough to understand that you have to take care of things. I would have loved some sort of "fair use" exchange, like replacement for a small cost. I am willing to pay for the cost of manufacture not the paying double for single use.

RE: Tough love
By Christopher1 on 5/20/2007 7:16:05 AM , Rating: 3
That's what I am waiting for as well: for the game manufacturers to offer replacement at a REASONABLE cost.

Now, Sony and their game developers used to do that, there was a little addendum at the back of the game books included with the game that told you how to get a new copy of a game if your old one got super-scratched and was unreadable.

For the PS2 and PS3 however, that addendum is lacking, and it's a scary sight.

I take care of my disks, burned myself and not, like they are made of GOLD when I buy one, and they STILL get covered with scratches sooner or later!
My parents said that about DVD's they hardly ever played (maybe 10 times in total) that have gotten so scratched they are unwatchable.

They need to make DVD's and CD's more scratch resistant.

RE: Tough love
By jadedeath on 5/18/07, Rating: -1
RE: Tough love
By christojojo on 5/18/2007 1:44:14 PM , Rating: 3
Millions of dollars, and guns and knives.

Really, come on, almost everyone tries to watch and help a child grow. Things happen like cooking dinner, relieving oneself, answering a phone. Sometimes, you just can't duct tape the kid to a wall. A very active curious child will get into things, even when told not to. Especially, when told not to. I have 2 children, both boys. One follows the rules exactly. The other, well, we pray, we correct, we instruct, we reprimand, we love. My children are not PCs you can reboot or change the OS. They are my life and I do everything, (even take reponsibility for their actionsand hold them to high standards); that's everything to ensure they grow up to be strong responsible adults.

RE: Tough love
By christojojo on 5/18/2007 1:58:52 PM , Rating: 2
I should have stated I don't back-up games. I don't because "They break-em they buy replacements". They know the value of money and how to work for it, through chores.

RE: Tough love
By Christopher1 on 5/20/2007 7:32:53 AM , Rating: 2
You should have the right to back up games however, and a lot of people and children do take care of the disks like they are made of gold and they STILL get scratched to hell sooner or later.

My parents told me many times when I was growing up "Christopher, why the hell are these games so scratched?!!!!!!!" I told them "Because they get scratched in the drive!"

They didn't believe me....... until 5 years ago, when my father realized that many of HIS disks, which he BARELY USED, were scratched all to hell.

That's when he finally apologized and admitted that the disks are so flimsy and scratch-prone, that they aren't worth buying.

RE: Tough love
By Axbattler on 5/20/2007 12:50:27 PM , Rating: 3
Honestly, I don't know how teens/adults manage to scratch their discs to "to hell" if/when they are handled with half decent care. Yea, I have seen discs that are scratched to hell, but they are usually just dumped in a stack of disc on top of the console/DVD player what-not.

I still have my original copy of Sam & Max Hit the Road, Command and Conquer and Warcraft II, and they are still in mint condition. That's not to say I never left a single print on any of my discs, or all my discs are scratch free. But the ones I took care of, all have minimum blemish.

I was going to call you on the "disc getting scratched in the drive", but having read this article (quick Google): I'll give you the benefit of doubt. But in my experience, that's more of an exception than the norm. That's not to say I am against backup, but I favour the suggestion earlier of simply paying for a cost of replacement instead.

RE: Tough love
By drebo on 5/25/2007 6:07:09 PM , Rating: 2
I've got to agree with you. I don't take care of my discs and I never have any problems getting them to play. In fact, the only ones that I have that no longer play are my Metallica S&M discs that were in my backpack when I got run over by a pickup truck some years ago. Needless to say, they're broken.

Other than that, I can still use all of my CDs and DVDs, even my original Warcraft 1 discs, which spent a number of years out of its case underneath a pile of other discs...all of which still work.

RE: Tough love
By timmiser on 5/19/2007 12:50:43 AM , Rating: 1
It is obvious you don't have small children!!

RE: Tough love
By RMTimeKill on 5/23/2007 3:07:10 PM , Rating: 2
You beat me to it... Father of 3, its amazing what they can find that hidden away and how fast they can find it...

RE: Tough love
By exanimas on 5/18/2007 1:57:26 PM , Rating: 1
Some electronic retailers do offer plans like this on certain video games. I believe Best Buy offers either a 1 or 2 year replacement plan on certain games for an additional few dollars. Once the game gets scratched or stops working, you just have to call a number, ship them the game, and they send you a voucher for a new one. It's actually a deal directly with certain manufacturers. So your idea is already (semi) in place.

RE: Tough love
By kamel5547 on 5/22/2007 5:46:00 PM , Rating: 2
As does GameStop... if people really are that worried they can pay for the protection. Personally I think the majority of copies are not made as back-ups, and hence the manuf. has every right to block them.

RE: Tough love
By BigLan on 5/18/2007 2:45:40 PM , Rating: 2
You know, microsoft has a replacement plan for their discs, but it's $20 per disc/

EA also has a similar thing, which is $15 for a replacement from them.

I'd imagine most other publishers have similar schemes. It's more expensive than a dvdr, but will let you play on live.

RE: Tough love
By senbassador on 5/19/2007 3:08:58 PM , Rating: 2
I totally agree. Although I am guilty of having played copied games from time to time and listening to downloaded music myself, which I shouldn't be doing; I be the first one to admit that I wouldn't have the right to complain if the owners did something to prevent me from doing it. So long that their measures don't interfere with legitimate uses, which can be problematic-- take for instance Microsoft's implementations that you can't even change your hardware for your OS to stop working-- which is a whole other topic.

If you can't afford the high prices of video games, then perhaps you should find another hobby. We spend too much time in front of computer screens and TVs anyway. This should be a cue to actually go outside once in a while.

The only semi-legitimate "excuse" for breaking the copyright seals is if you are an enthusiast hacker, more interested in the process of hacking than the freebies. In that case, rather than complaining, the hackers should be greatful for the challenge. In a way, I am glad that they have the extra security features, since for the hacking enthusiasts this would only make the task of hacking the box more fun.

RE: Tough love
By Christopher1 on 5/20/2007 7:18:39 AM , Rating: 2
Wrong. The reason that people are wanting to be able to play backed-up games is because DVD's are NOTORIOUSLY scratch prone, and they don't want to have to pay 20 dollar apiece for a replacement from Microsoft when it should be free. I mean, they can just mail it to you in a damn first class mail sleeve, I have had manufacturers do that before for me.

Someone should take Microsoft to court over this, and I think if someone did, they would win.

RE: Tough love
By Screwballl on 5/21/2007 12:21:24 AM , Rating: 2
A majority of people with this mod use it simply as a much faster method of loading the game. Generally takes half the time to load the game from the hard drive than it does the disc. At least 90% do it from a game they bought legally. There is maybe 20-25% (for now) actually using it (truly illegal) with copied games from a friend, rental or downloaded hacked version. The rest are using it within the "fair use" act standards (before the rich got their greedy hands on it and added "provided it doesn't break encryption or encoding specifically created to prevent modification or copying or original content").

RE: Tough love
By bldckstark on 5/24/2007 11:51:49 AM , Rating: 2
I must be one of them. I have two five year boys (twins) and they break everything they touch. I have tried everything to get them to handle the disks as little as possible, including banning them from changing the games in the box, until I can come and do it. That just ruined gaming for them and caused all kinds of problems. They play one boys game choice for 20-30 minutes then they switch to the others game. This is the compromise they worked out themselves and I like it. I have tried all kinds of protective devices for the disks and none have worked. So then there are only two solutions to this "pickle". One is to continuously buy new copies of games I already own, and two, to back them up.

My wife, daughter and I like to play on Live, so I guess we are just screwed because it is cheaper to put games on easily damaged disks instead of an enclosed device (cartridges?).

No, I don't pirate games. Not one. Ever. That would not be a good life lesson for these electronically talented little boys to see.

By exdeath on 5/18/2007 5:35:19 PM , Rating: 1
Illegally modified? Excuse me? So if I paint it pink it's illegal?

If I put an after market intake and exhaust on my car, is it illegally modified?

Give me a fvking break.

What right does someone have to tell you what you can or can't do with something that you paid the asking price for? I bought it, I will take it apart and do what ever the fvck I want with it. It's not a lease.

Keeping out people with pirated games is one thing, but simply banning on the basis of the machine being modified is absolute BS.

By vitul on 5/18/07, Rating: 0
By exdeath on 5/19/07, Rating: 0
By jadedeath on 5/19/2007 12:02:53 PM , Rating: 1
No offense, but you seem like the type of guy who would walk down the middle of the road because 'the man' tells you to walk on the sidewalk.

You're free to do as you please with the things you spend your money on, but just don't expect to go on Xbox-Live with a modded 360.

This post has been brought to you by the thought police, we're watching.


By newcastlenellie on 5/19/2007 6:34:28 AM , Rating: 4
yeah the inatke and exhaust arent illeagal. however if you get your engine remapped to higher higher bhp without telling your insurance company then have a crash they generally dont pay out. its the same thing the remap is changing the firmware of your car which is sort of the same as changing the firmware of your dvd drive

By BigToque on 5/20/2007 3:33:28 PM , Rating: 4
It isn't illegal to modify your xbox. You own it and can do as you please.

Xbox Live is a service that Microsoft owns. To use their service, you have to agree to their terms of use. In this case, their terms are that you must have an unmodified console.

Truth be told, I think it's a good idea. It is an inconvenience, but blocking out everything that has been modified helps reduce the possibility that some people might have an unfair advantage in some games. (This might be a terrible example and even impossible, but maybe someone modifies the code of their backed up game (a FPS) to enable the use of a keyboard and mouse. That person would probably have a significant advantage over all other players using a gamepad.)

By exdeath on 5/20/07, Rating: -1
By BigToque on 5/20/2007 6:14:38 PM , Rating: 3
Playing a game is like taking test. The whole point is to see who does better given the same set of conditions. Microsoft is making sure that everyone is playing under the same conditions.

Your life isn't a test. You're not in competition with anyone else. You are free to do anything you wish.

By Christopher1 on 5/21/2007 8:30:51 AM , Rating: 2
Excuse me, but everyone is playing under the same conditions whether a console is modified in this way or not. Secondly, if you look on the Microsoft website, they ALREADY have a keyboard/mouse combo for the XBox360, they just don't advertise that very well.

I was surprised when I found it on their website listed, I thought they would want to keep things even between players as well.

By ZimZum on 5/18/2007 7:54:44 AM , Rating: 2
You couldn't play backup games on Live at all with the 1st Xbox. If you even connected to live with an Xbox that had a mod chip that wasn't disabled or a modified bios your Xbox would get blacklisted as well. In many some ways the XB1 was tougher to hack than the 360.

By nayy on 5/18/2007 10:05:10 AM , Rating: 2
I think the timing is perfect, Microsoft gave people who had their 360 hacked sometime to get hooked on their "backed up" games. And as if that wasn't enough, you have the Halo 3 demo, which is for sure the largest XBL event so far. This is going to have ton of hackers getting a second 360, core would cut it since you all ready have a HDD, but then again you may want to upgrade to elite.
It's brilliant

By Christopher1 on 5/20/2007 7:27:04 AM , Rating: 2
You know, I think that is EXACTLY what is going on here. They are trying to make people buy a second XBox360, to make their bottom lines look better.

By jadedeath on 5/21/2007 1:34:25 AM , Rating: 2
Honestly, it's not MAKING anyone do anything.

There's an old saying, "he who has the gold, makes the rules" currently that's Bill Gates, he's got the gold and he is making the rules, if you don't want to play with his rules {only main disks and unmodified 360's} then that's your problem, not his.

If you want to make copies of the games, go nuts, he probably doesn't care, just don't go on Xbox Live with them otherwise you could be in trouble {stick with the main disks on Live kiddies, let that be a lesson to you} and if you modified your 360 then don't go on Live at all.

Bottom line is: He's not MAKING you buy a new 360, you took it upon yourself to break the rules. There's no conspiracy theory, no "MAN" looking over your shoulder and waving his finger at you that he'll spank you if you step out of line. There is only the man with the rules telling you that if you want to play in his sandbox you need to use HIS shovels not one's that you've "pimped out".


By Christopher1 on 5/21/2007 8:27:04 AM , Rating: 2
The problem is that some of those 'rules' violate OTHER laws, like fair-use laws, freedom to do with property as you wish laws, etc.

When a law or rule is in violation of OTHER laws and rules, that law is null and void unless the legislature specifically DELETES the old law while making the new law.

Some people forget that little technicality, and also forget that they have a right to modify, enhance, etc. anything they wish in any way they wish, as long as they are not breaking any laws.

In this case, the fair use laws SPECIFICALLY say that you can break encryption and modify computer equipment, of which a console is just a fancy name for the former, in order to back up games and play backed up games.

I make legitimate back up copies of all my games
By rdeegvainl on 5/18/2007 8:36:52 AM , Rating: 2
I make a "Fair Use" copy of all my media. I am upset about this.
/end comment

By rdeegvainl on 5/18/2007 11:52:13 AM , Rating: 1
NO YOU! lol.
My copies are fair use, so i should be able to go on xbox live with them if i want. The point is to have a backup copy for when the original fails. That would mean that when the disc gets scratched by say, a bad disc drive, or my neice for messing with my games when they come over, i would take my fair use copy and still be able to play the software i payed for. That is what a backup is for, to be used just like the original. So i guess i just backed up my statement, do i look like a complete moron?
good day sir.

By GreenDay on 5/18/2007 3:25:26 PM , Rating: 1
Logan you self-righteous SOB...!
What did you mommy spank you a little too hard when you were a child...! That is a legitimate question, what if you do buy a DVD/XBOX game and you want to back it up and play from the backup. Once you have bought a CD/DVD then you own the rights to that CD/DVD and it is then legal for you to create a backup for YOUR OWN personal use. Check the laws before you shoot your mouth off and make a comment, it simply says you cannot make copies for profit. If you have paid for an XBOX game then you have paid your dues and you should be able to make a backup copy and put your original away. Where it becomes illegal is if you then take the game back to the store or sell the game and keep the copy and continue to play it.
Microsoft should have done their homework and issued serial numbers for each game disk sold. Yes you will get piracy and cheating but just like EverQuest and even as far back as Diablo II this has happened and if you try to register a duplicate CD key then it simply stops you. If in fact it is a genuine game that you have just purchased then you can take it back and get a new one. No, this is not fool proof but for the most part it works.

By bigredk001 on 5/18/2007 7:48:37 PM , Rating: 2
I have to agree, the simple solution would be for Microsoft to implement a cd key verification system where you enter in a cd key provided with your game into your Xbox Live account. Those who would like to play their game on Xbox Live therefore will pay to get a legitimate key, and allows the legal fair use of making a backup.

The main reason companies don't want customers to make backup copies is because they know that if the disc gets damaged, the customer is "forced" to purchase a new copy. That increases sales and revenue. Yes, there are these insurance "schemes", but why should we pay extra for a right that we already have. Companies also don't like customers selling their cd keys for games they no longer play to new customer, because the company has already made it's money from the key. The company doesn't care if a cd key only gets used for a few weeks before the person no longer plays the game.

By rdeegvainl on 5/20/2007 10:04:10 PM , Rating: 2
I'll try and use small words for you also. cause you have a hard time understanding rights.
People have a RIGHT to back up the media they paid for. Though maybe actions can be taken to stop bad thing before they happen(had to rewrite that a few times to get the words small enough for you Logan) you still have a right to make a backup copy for things you either can't prevent or haven't thought of. not everything can be thought of ahead of time. that is why we have the "fair use" right to make the back up.
But i am just glad we have jadedeath (who seems pretty concerned that we know his name is logan) to tell use not to use or practice our rights, instead of following his rulings. thanks pal for all you do for the individuals rights.

By Screwballl on 5/21/2007 12:46:25 AM , Rating: 1
Hows this for you logan?

I buy a car, I own it. I make whatever modifications I want to it and Chevy cannot tell me to NOT do it.
I buy a house, I own it. The government cannot tell me that I can't add an extra room to it (provided it is within the property I legally own).
I buy a printer, I own it. If I want to print receipts for a Dell computer on it, HP cannot stop me.
I buy a Stanley screwdriver, I own it. The Stanley company cannot tell me that I can only use Stanley brand screws or shave some off the tip to fit smaller screw heads.

We are not paying to rent the game permanently. We are paying to own the game/program/application and make backups of our media which is known to scratch. "They" know it is a disc and will scratch, they expect people to pay for the same game 3 or 4 times when the disc is unplayable due to damage. They want this because they make more money.

I do not agree with piracy and believe there is a better way of data verification than blocking anyone who has used their fair use rights. This is why I do not own console game systems anymore. This is also why I buy games that allow open ended programming, map making and other methods of user creation that involve editing or use of the original coding.

Why is Counter Strike so popular? One word: MODIFICATIONS

By jadedeath on 5/21/2007 1:27:23 AM , Rating: 1
You can't really compare any of those things to something that you AGREE to go on a service with an unmodified system.

but if you want me to poke holes in your logic, all you had to do was ask.

Chevy can't tell you that you can't make certain modifications, but there's a large difference between modifying your car for street and modifying your car for racing, if you modify it for when it's on the street and you go too far then the Government {not Chevy} will step in and bust you on it.

Actually if you owned property, you'd know that the government CAN in fact step in and tell you what you can and cannot add to your home by way of extra rooms or add-ons to the building that you already have. They're quite asses that way.

I've said it before and I'll say it again, if you want to make copies you're free to do so {did you catch it that time? If not here we go} If you want to make copies you're free to do so... BUT, just don't use said copies on Xbox Live and you should be golden. Modify your Xbox however and you're on your own as you've not only invalidated your warranty but you've also screwed yourself on Xbox Live.


By MightyAA on 5/21/2007 5:22:00 PM , Rating: 2
They didn't say you can't modify it. They said you can't modify it and still play on their network (but you still could play single player). You still have a choice.

You could modify your Chevy too, but if the track you want to race on doesn't allow modified cars, you will also be out of luck. They own xbox live, you don't, so they can make any rules they want....

By rdeegvainl on 5/21/2007 7:19:20 AM , Rating: 1
Are you argueing that you have an inherant right to assault someone? cause if that is your arguement you have some serious issues. That arguement holds less water than a rusted out gas tank.

My trick for getting games cheap.
By Mitch101 on 5/18/2007 12:02:34 PM , Rating: 2
Here is my trick for getting games cheap.

Subscribe to
1-It allows you to play the game and if it sucks well you didnt pay for it and simply return the game.

2-If the game rocks or you like it and were most likely the first one get the rental you can usually buy the game for $15.00+ less than the stores are selling it for. If its not a lot cheaper then continue to play the game maybe even all the way to the end if you beat it then you can return the game for another one. If you still want to buy it after a few weeks then the game will certainly be cheaper than buying it new and you may have been the first one to get the rental.

I find this method much better than buying a new game on a review only to find I dont like the game or I beat it in a few weeks or even lose interest in a week or two.

Example SHREK THE THIRD Keep It Price: $39.99 but at most stores is $50.00. If Im the first renter Im buying the game at $10.00 less than the stores sell it for.

Command & Conquer 3: Tiberium Wars Keep It Price: $47.99 while its still $59.99 is most stores.

Both of these games came out in the last 10 days and you get to try before you buy. Try returning a game to BestBuy that sucked.

RE: My trick for getting games cheap.
By SomeYoungMan on 5/18/2007 1:29:18 PM , Rating: 2
All this for a low, low fee of $21.95/mo. I guess if you buy more than 3 games a month, then it's worth it.

RE: My trick for getting games cheap.
By nayy on 5/18/2007 1:53:16 PM , Rating: 2
It's worth if it keeps you from buying a losy game

By Mitch101 on 5/21/2007 2:54:16 PM , Rating: 2
Here is where it saves you.

1-If you can beat the game in a short amount of time.

2-The Game sucks.

3-You lose interest within a week or two. (I have had a lot of games I played just a few times where the game starts off ok but goes downhill a week into the gameplay)

4-Game is rated or marketed for Kids. Then you come to find out the learning curve is so high your kids cant make it far in the game because of its difficulty.

If it keep your from buying 1 game a month its paid for iteself.

can't you...?
By Moishe on 5/18/2007 8:07:40 AM , Rating: 2
Can't you re-flash the dvd drive with the original firmware? permanent mods always freak me out. There should be some way to go back to the original. Or heck, maybe MS should reflash the firmware automatically as part of an update.

RE: can't you...?
By kalgriffen on 5/18/2007 11:58:35 AM , Rating: 2
I doubt MS would want to reflash because of potential issues with a botched firmware update. Just imagine the user uproar when they couldn't play games using the dvd drive.

RE: can't you...?
By vitul on 5/18/2007 3:29:30 PM , Rating: 2
you can reflash people have done it. but they are banning the mainboards themseleves.

Doesn't bother me
By mydogfarted on 5/18/2007 12:26:10 PM , Rating: 3
I buy all my games too... 6+ months after their release. I wait for all the hype to die down, a round of price cuts and usually pick up a used copy from EBGames. Sure there are some games that I pay full price for, but only when it's something I have to have right at release.

RE: Doesn't bother me
By Christopher1 on 5/21/2007 8:29:00 AM , Rating: 2
I usually do that as well, but what GALLS me is that Microsoft is automatically assuming "You have a modified console? You are a pirate!"

That is what I have a HUGE problem with and that I would have a problem with if it was Nintendo, Sony or anyone else automatically making that assumption.

Fair-use Vs Protection
By gitmodomo on 5/18/2007 1:42:01 PM , Rating: 4
A lot of this discussion tosses the baby out with the bathwater. The issues are fairly simple but may never have a mutually satisfactory resolution.

On one hand the developers are very much hurt by piracy. Be they megasofts or a kid in his bedroom banging out the next Great American Game.

On the other hand, I believe that it is reasonable for people to protect their investment by creating back up copies of discs. I have kids and they are really really hard on CDs and DVDs. It bugs the hell out of me to find discs lying around just begging to get trashed. That's why I don't buy very many games for them. This also hurts the developers. I have much more sympathy for buying Nintendo DS games for them as those cartridges are almost bullet-proof.

For the record, I don't own a 360, will probably never own a 360 and will absolutely never subscribe to an overpriced service like live.

Is Microsoft bad for doing this? No, but they aren't exactly a good guy here either. I certainly hope they don't keep charging the customers they ban.

Saw it coming
By Pabby on 5/18/2007 6:08:07 AM , Rating: 3
Well it sucks for those who have modded dvd drives but lets face it, it was always going to happen sooner or later and nobody can really complain.

My girlfrieds brother has one which I modded for him just for the learning experience (and for him to play copies) as I don't own a 360. Fortunatly they don't play Live at all.

I was actually quite surprised when I found out you were able to play with copied games. I just assumed it would be like having an active mod chip on a normal Xbox and you would just get banned.

Actually I think it reflects kinda badly on MS that it took so long to plug this hole.

Well I'm out....
By Homerboy on 5/18/2007 7:23:07 AM , Rating: 2
Not too big of a concern I rarely play online anyways.
Was fun while it lasted

By SGTPan on 5/18/2007 12:08:57 PM , Rating: 2
Does anyone know if I can still get in on the Halo 3 beta if I buy a legit copy of Crackdown?

M$ has bigger problems
By vitul on 5/18/2007 3:26:17 PM , Rating: 2
They are so worried about banning people for firmware hacks but yet they still cannot solve the problem for the consoles overheating and the RROD. they are sending me a box out to ship my system off if it breaks again when i get it back i am through with ms. I will sell the system and buy a ps3.

There is also a thread on about starting a class action lawsuit due to the freezing consoles and the RROD.

XBOX banned live bla bla
By murcHADA on 6/15/2007 2:48:35 AM , Rating: 2
so now people all go to xboxconnect and still play online except for the xboxlive extras..therefore not being able to compete online for notoriety but still getting their games for free or close to free...hackers and pirates win all the time.and cannot be stopped..simple..:(

microsoft is taking greed to the next level
By AntDX316 on 5/18/07, Rating: -1
By AntiV6 on 5/18/2007 3:56:33 AM , Rating: 5
They are being greedy because they banned people who breeched the terms of service and were using copied discs?

How much of that $$$ that people save by getting copied games actually goes to charity?

RE: microsoft is taking greed to the next level
By FITCamaro on 5/18/2007 7:10:10 AM , Rating: 1
What about the game developers who spent their money and worked hard to make their games, only to have someone pirate it? Or is that just part of your corporate greed world too where people want to be paid for their creations and hard work.

Your statement is ones of the dumbest I've ever seen. I don't even want to know what drug you're doing to where you can equate preventing people from using an online service on a hacked console to greed. How exactly are people giving that money to charity? By buying a game and giving it to others for free? That's not charity, its piracy. You're obviously a liberal who thinks that people should be given things for free if they can't afford them.

Video games are not a necessity. If you're can't afford to play them, then you don't. If you want to, get a better job to make more money so you can. If you can't because you didn't bother to get an education, that's your fault and no one else's.

RE: microsoft is taking greed to the next level
By uallas5 on 5/18/2007 8:10:45 AM , Rating: 5
You're obviously a liberal who thinks that people should be given things for free if they can't afford them.

I was agree with everything you said until I got to that statement. What kind of drugs are YOU on that you'd think that being a liberal has anything to do with video game piracy. I hope you don't actually think that NO conservative person would ever lie, cheat or steal.

RE: microsoft is taking greed to the next level
By Spivonious on 5/18/2007 10:04:07 AM , Rating: 3
I think you took his statement out of context. Liberals generally support more government involvement through programs that reward people for being lazy. All it does is make those people even less able to help themselves. I've even heard of single mothers having more kids simply so they can get more money out of the taxpayers.

By Christopher1 on 5/20/2007 7:25:26 AM , Rating: 2
Reward people for being lazy? Uh..... no, we want them to be rewarded for the work they do at a REASONABLE rate, meaning if someone works 40 hours a week as a cart pusher at Wal-Mart they get the same pay as someone working as a doctor or close to it.

Frankly, the former job is MUCH harder than the latter job, the only difference is that the latter job involves the knowledge that "Oh, I might kill someone if I get something wrong!" That is NOT worth the nearly 60 dollars difference in hourly pay that doctors get over cart-pushers.

By bldckstark on 5/24/2007 12:18:10 PM , Rating: 2
Most people get paid for what they know, not what they do. You equate a cart pusher to a doctor? How important to the lives of those involved is the cart pusher? How about the doctor? If doctors were paid the same as cart pushers, how many would we have? Would you trust a cart pusher to rip open your rib cage and bypass your heart? The only people who think everyone should get the same pay are those who don't care to do the work to get higher pay. They want to sit on their asses, do nothing useful for society and then ask for handouts because they can't buy games.

The same thing I tell my kids - If you want nice stuff when you grow up, you have to work hard and plan accordingly. If you want nothing, then do nothing.

RE: microsoft is taking greed to the next level
By Rampage on 5/18/2007 12:38:27 PM , Rating: 2
I was agree with everything you said until I got to that statement. What kind of drugs are YOU on that you'd think that being a liberal has anything to do with video game piracy. I hope you don't actually think that NO conservative person would ever lie, cheat or steal.

Actually uallas5, he's right.
Go to anti-RIAA sites and talk to the people, find out where they lie politically. The majority are leftist liberals.

Both sides have good points, but I lean to the right, and for good reason.
Piracy does no good for developers, or frankly anyone but the kid who doesnt want to pay for something they don't need.

When you grow older, work hard for an education, get a good paying job, you can afford these games and will respect your neighbor who studied hard at the university to get a computer science degree to create this game for you.

The people who refuse to accept the system, chose to steal.
Of course both sides are guilty of this, but as I said go checkout anti-RIAA websites whose members advocate and defend IP theft.
Conservative Democrats and Republicans both agree that "if you don't buy your neighbors product, you can't expect him to buy yours".
Unless you are a liberal always fighting The Man, in which case you refuse to work with the system and get a great job.

I personally like things like Steam. You cut out the middleman, and the money goes nearly 100% to the actual developers. Whenever I want a game, I usually just pick one off of there. Its faster than wasting gas driving to the store, and you can still back up your games.

Someday soon, consoles will also be soley online distribution as well and the issue raised by this article will all be in the past.

So would-be thieves out there, your days are numbered. Steam is testament to that.

RE: microsoft is taking greed to the next level
By christojojo on 5/18/2007 1:55:21 PM , Rating: 2
I'm just wondering, since when has anybody guaranted somebody a job if they worked hard and got a degree?
Don't get me wrong I believe in hard work and a great education: I am a teacher (not English) after all (nothing like job security). But we all know of down sizing, outsourcing and every other economic twist that happens, hurt educated and uneducated people alike. I am neither "pro-", nor "anti" "The Man". I like some leaders Republican and Democrat. I dislike leaders when they lie more than necessary, both G.W.B. and B.C. fit into that last one. ("I did it" and "Oops, my bad", would have gone a long way in my book.)

I do not see anything wrong with Microsoft did here. I also, believe that the next stage for distribution IS the internet, but I still try to buy a hard copy. I do this because, like brick and mortar places, they can close without any recourse for the consumer.

As far as having babies for more aid is concerned, that's just lame. It does happen, not as much as people say but it does happen. I just think it is a lame statement to prevent piracy. Poor "baby-having" people cant afford an Xbox 360. They can't afford such things as food, bug free apartments, even such petty things as dental work. If the amount lost due to piracy is being calculated based on what a poor person has but could never afford that's just sad.

I see it now...

Steve Ballmer: We lost fifty three trillion gold pieces because a poor "baby having" person bought a pirated copy of "Sims Dogs of Mouse Eating DOOM Tournament 33" at a dollar instead of not buying it at $59.99.

Sorry for the rant. I'm a bit ornery today.

By Christopher1 on 5/20/2007 7:21:47 AM , Rating: 2
Not a rant, and that is quite true. The games are TRAGICALLY overpriced nowadays ($100 dollars for a game? AS IF!), and I for one am not going to buy them at those prices.

I have NO problems with pirating something when it is dramatically overpriced to the point that there should be an investigation done into the people making the product, and game manufacture is a case in point.

RE: microsoft is taking greed to the next level
By jadedeath on 5/20/07, Rating: -1
By Christopher1 on 5/21/2007 8:40:04 AM , Rating: 2
A year? Hardly. If you think that a game takes a year to make, you are SERIOUSLY deluded. I have a friend who WORKS for a game manufacturer, and he told me that "1 year" figure is a load of bull.

Most of the time is spent getting approval for everything under the sun, from the language that is used in the game to the graphics that are used in the game.

Putting the game together itself takes about 2 months, all together, and it's mainly done automatically by computers with little human oversight.

Now, if they want new graphics or a new character model (they very rarely do nowadays) THAT takes a few months to a year to make, but that is outsourced to an art studio who then sends the work back to the game company, and while they are doing that the game is basically finished, they just have to insert the textures and models into the game, easy with today's tech as 1, 2, 3.

Personally, I made a 3D shooter from scratch using the Doom 2 developers kit back in the day, and it took me exactly 2 weeks to make the thing working about 6 hours a day.

The biggest thing wasn't even the graphics, the new monsters I put in it, or the new weapons I figured out how to make.

No, it was simply figuring out how to place rooms and teleporters to make the levels as I wanted them to appear.

People keep on justifying the high costs of games with the high time of development. Sorry, but not buying it anymore. Why does Disney seem to be able to make games on the caliber of Rayman and be able to sell them for 20 dollars at most to start?

Something is wrong here, and the greed of developers and game companies is becoming more and more apparent.

By Rampage on 5/21/2007 12:41:01 PM , Rating: 2
Uh huh.
Greed isn't STEALING something, but rather "charging to much for something" that YOU want.
Ironic the shallow depth of your mental ability to comprehend morality and life.

RE: microsoft is taking greed to the next level
By HDBanger on 5/18/2007 8:35:13 AM , Rating: 2
Here is one of those folks who thinks everything under the sun is left or right. Break out of their false paradigm man, they are all bought and paid for, left , right, middle. Nice grammar btw. ;p

RE: microsoft is taking greed to the next level
By FITCamaro on 5/18/07, Rating: -1
RE: microsoft is taking greed to the next level
By mars777 on 5/18/2007 12:06:50 PM , Rating: 2
He tried to say that you have a black/white vision.

You happen to loose perception about things when you comment.

The lost perception would be: colors or the grey area.

This is a tipical US phenomena.

By christojojo on 5/19/2007 11:58:52 AM , Rating: 3
As an American I have to agree. I rarely find people willing to look at more than their predetermined point of view. Like global warming- They either admit it (saying we have to plant trees and stop driving so much) or deny it (saying it's a plot to hurt the economy). It's way too rare that someone will just say well let me read about it first. Even rarer to hear someone say, "Hey, we can change a few things here and there, people can still work and make money everyone can be happy."

Nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public.
H. L. Mencken
US editor (1880 - 1956)

The Constitution gives every American the inalienable right to make a damn fool of himself.
John Ciardi
US poet (1916 - 1986)

RE: microsoft is taking greed to the next level
By chick0n on 5/18/07, Rating: -1
By AntDX316 on 5/18/2007 9:45:25 AM , Rating: 3
im offended because i have said nothing about this affecting me and i dont even have a 360 nor do i support piracy and u put "supporting fuckheads like me"

By Vanilla Thunder on 5/18/2007 10:17:15 AM , Rating: 5
I pay for all my games, and I work my ass for it.

Is this an admission of prostitution for gaming?


RE: microsoft is taking greed to the next level
By TravisO on 5/18/2007 9:11:19 AM , Rating: 2
When you scan some charity receipts that equal the price of the games you own, then at least you have an argument, albeit not one that will hold up in court.

Let's see, you probably have 20 copied games, $60 per game = $1,200... so let's see those donation receipts... oh yea, I forget, you're lying.

Hey I use to mod too, I was very naughty with my Dreamcast, but hey, I got a better paying job and now I've gone 100% legit with my PS2, Gamecube and 360. Now my PSP, well I might be guilty of that but I only use it to play emulated NES games anyways, not PSP games.

RE: microsoft is taking greed to the next level
By AntDX316 on 5/18/2007 9:36:43 AM , Rating: 3
no i didnt mean it like that i ment microsoft converted the money they get from doing this stuff so they can in turn give the money to charity organizations such as the Bill Gates fund

and btw i dont do piracy i buy programs and games i want legally and would never distribute them because the companies spent so much time and effort on R&D that giving them what they want is only fair... of course this pirating is obviously wrong and is illegal and i dont support it

RE: microsoft is taking greed to the next level
By B on 5/18/2007 4:23:51 PM , Rating: 3
Microsoft and The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation are completely different entities. There is no overlap. Micorsoft did not fund the Foundation, Bill Gates did with his own personal and private property. Bill Gates owned shares of Microsoft, he then gave up his right of ownership of these shares to the Foundation. The Foundation is now merely a shareholder of Microsoft. There is no co-mingling of assets. For all intents and purposes, both legal and practical, these are two completely unrelated separate entities. As and aside, who cares if a charity receives a cash dividend from Microsoft, rather than Bill Gates? (Excluding the children in Africa with HIV or Malaria)

RE: microsoft is taking greed to the next level
By Neophyte26 on 5/18/2007 7:49:32 PM , Rating: 2
This is just an idea but possibly something that, in theory, may keep both sides happy...

If someone tries to use a "backup" disc, how about periodically asking the user to insert his original disc for verification purposes say, once every 2 weeks?

That way, those who haven't paid for an original game or those who have sold or returned the game after copying it won't be able to play it whereas those who've kept the game after making a backup only have to whip it out for a few seconds every now and again.

With a bit of thought there's nearly always a way to appease both sides... apart from those acting illegally of course.

By Christopher1 on 5/20/2007 7:34:26 AM , Rating: 2
Here's a better idea: make it so that people can download games online, and burn them to disks, but only once and only using a propriety piece of software!

That would be the better thing to do, and the smarter thing to do at least until they make "uncopyable disks", which they never will in all reality!

By bldckstark on 5/24/2007 12:26:35 PM , Rating: 2
How does that help? That is exactly what we have now, except we go to the store to get the "uncopyable" disk.

I hate Microsoft
By tiker on 5/18/07, Rating: -1
"Nowadays, security guys break the Mac every single day. Every single day, they come out with a total exploit, your machine can be taken over totally. I dare anybody to do that once a month on the Windows machine." -- Bill Gates
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