Release List Reviews Shop Join News DVD Giveaways Video Games Advertise
DVD Reviews | Theatrical Reviews | Adult DVD Reviews | Video Game Reviews | Price Search Buy Stuff Here
Video Game Talk
HD Reviews
 



Go Back   DVD Talk Forum > Entertainment Discussions > Video Game Talk

Video Game Talk The Place to talk about and trade Video & PC Games

View Poll Results: Will "Spore-like" DRM kill PC gaming?
Yes 16 44.44%
No 20 55.56%
Voters: 36. You may not vote on this poll

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 09-17-08, 12:39 AM   #1
Boba Fett
DVD Talk Reviewer
 
Boba Fett's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 5,760
Will DRM like the one with Spore and Crysis Warhead kill PC gaming?

After seeing 2000+ 1-Star reviews at Amazon for Spore because of the utterly idiotic DRM from EA, and after hearing EAs stance on the issue, I can't help but think that if this is the new standard, PC gaming is dead.

I have an Intel Mac and thought about getting into PC gaming now that I can run the stuff natively, but the more I read about this crap, the more it pushes me back to the console games.
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-08, 01:20 AM   #2
CKMorpheus
DVD Talk Hall of Fame
 
CKMorpheus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: New York, NY
Posts: 7,970
I doubt it. Studios are learning to go with the flow. EA is just archaic and they will either learn how to work with the rapidly changing technologies or perish trying to fight it.

This kind of DRM won't kill PC gaming, it will kill publishers like EA.
__________________
And death shall have no dominion...

My Countdown Counting down to: Wedding Bells
Adrienne: "I do!" Andrew: "I do!"
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-08, 01:31 AM   #3
Decker
DVD Talk Hero
 
Decker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Vegas, Baby!
Posts: 25,648
Um, I don't think this issue will kill EA. That's kinda like saying "Supersize Me" will kill McDonald's.

I think what will most likely "kill" PC gaming is the high demands that the new cutting-edge PC games put on the computers. If you need a new supercomputer every two years to stay current with the hot games, then there isn't going to be a very big market for those games; especially when most can be played quite well on a $199 console.

Sorry for being uninformed, what's the DRM issue with Spore? Can it only be installed on one computer or something?
__________________
Xbox Live: Decker 01........... My 360's Blog
PSN Gamertag : Decker01

GAME CENTER ID : DECKER 01

I haven't seen Evil Dead 2.....yet.
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-08, 06:52 AM   #4
taffer
DVD Talk Ultimate Edition
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 4,872
Quote:
Originally Posted by Decker View Post
Sorry for being uninformed, what's the DRM issue with Spore? Can it only be installed on one computer or something?
It requires you to authenticate via the internet upon installing. So if you don't have online access on the PC you plan to install it on, you are screwed. The worst part is that it can only be authenticated a total of three times. After the third time, you need to contact EA and have them reset the count. EA reviews it on a case-by-case basis, and they are not obligated to actually reset it. Basically, you will be treated as if you are pirate. So if you format your hard drive or uninstall and reinstall the game three times for whatever reason, your disc potentially becomes a $60 coaster.

Spore and the Crysis: Warhead expansion are not the first games to do this. Bioshock did it too.

I don't believe that this is going to kill either PC gaming or EA. EA is one of the biggest gaming companies. They aren't going anywhere. To say that EA will die is like saying Capcom or Square will die. PC gaming has been supposedly dying for the last decade. Yeah sure, PC gaming has lost a lot of its luster, and console gaming greatly outnumbers PC gaming today, but there will always be the hardcore PC gaming crowd. Plus, this isn't the first time that shitty copy-protection schemes have been in the limelight. Remember all the crap about Starforce from a few years ago?

Here is an article I found that says Spore has been illegally downloaded half a million times already:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...091400885.html

Quote:
Spore And The Great DRM Backlash

Erick Schonfeld
TechCrunch.com
Sunday, September 14, 2008; 7:10 AM

If we can learn anything from the troubled launch of Spore, a videogame many people have been looking forward to for years, it is that binding products with digital rights management (DRM) restrictions hurts more than it helps. Spore, designed by Sims creator Will Wright, went on sale a week ago. It is expected to sell 2 million copies in September alone, and is currently the No. 3 best-selling game on Amazon.

But it also has one of the worst ratings on Amazon (2,016 out of the 2,216 ratings are one star) because of a concerted campaign by fans protesting its DRM. It has also been downloaded an estimated 500,000 times on BitTorrent, and is well on its way to becoming the most illegally downloaded game ever.

The DRM that comes with the official game only allows customers to use it on three machines (after that you have to call EA for permission to activate the game on additional machines). This is nothing more than an inconvenience. Gamers, in general, are more likely to have more than one computer, and to cycle through computers faster than other PC owners because they always want the latest, greatest, and fastest machines. Many will hit that three-machine limit quickly.

Maybe EA should join the rest of the entertainment industry in coming up with a consistent DRM policy. Unlike iTunes, which imposes a five-machine limit on most purchased songs and movies, there is no way to associate new machines or disassociate old ones from your account online. You have to call. That does not scale.

So now EA has a consumer backlash on its hands, and not because consumers don't like the game, but because they don't like EA telling them what they can do with the game after they've paid for it. What is worse, the DRM is obviously not stopping pirated versions from getting out there. And since the pirated version is DRM-free, many gamers consider it a better product than the DRMed one that Electronic Arts is trying to sell.

The silliest part of this whole affair is that EA has a much more effective weapon against piracy than the DRM: the game itself. Many of Spore's most interesting features, such as the ability to upload characters you create and explore worlds created by other players, have an online component. These are integral to the gameplay. All EA needs to do is to turn these features off to anyone who cannot prove that they've actually purchased the game. Then no self-respecting gamer will want that pirated copy.

There is a lesson here for all media companies. Whether they are producing videogames, movies, or music, adding DRM won't stop piracy. The best way to stop piracy is to hobble the pirated version, not the official one.

I agree that the best way to stop piracy is to insert bugs that affect only the pirated version. All this copy-protection crap does is hurt the legitimate buyers, not the pirates.

There have been a few games I can remember off-hand that have inserted bugs that only affect the game if it is pirated. Assassin's Creed would crash upon entering Jerusalem in the pirated version. Deus Ex (an old game that got everything right but has been sadly ignored by most people) had a bug that would not let you get on the boat at the beginning of the game if the game was pirated. I remember the thousands of posts on Gamefaqs waay back when Deus Ex first came out asking how you are supposed to get on the boat, and everyone bashing the person who posted that for being a dirty pirate.

Last edited by taffer; 09-17-08 at 06:54 AM.
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-08, 07:00 AM   #5
SunMonkey
DVD Talk Limited Edition
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: Lake Ridge, VA
Posts: 5,868
I don't think these types of DRM systems have anything to do with stopping piracy. What they effectively do is stop the secondary market. If you want a copy without illegally downloading it, you must buy it new.
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-08, 07:42 AM   #6
Easy
DVD Talk Gold Edition
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Missouri, USA
Posts: 2,188
Quote:
Originally Posted by Decker View Post
I think what will most likely "kill" PC gaming is the high demands that the new cutting-edge PC games put on the computers. If you need a new supercomputer every two years to stay current with the hot games, then there isn't going to be a very big market for those games; especially when most can be played quite well on a $199 console.
Yeah, thats what killed it for me. Well, that and the fact that nvidia can't write a decent driver to save their ass. So I bought a console for what it would have cost to upgrade the video card (never mind the whole computer) and never looked back. Fuck 'em.
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-08, 07:47 AM   #7
flix1
DVD Talk Special Edition
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: IL
Posts: 1,783
Quote:
So now EA has a consumer backlash on its hands, and not because consumers don't like the game, but because they don't like EA telling them what they can do with the game after they've paid for it. What is worse, the DRM is obviously not stopping pirated versions from getting out there. And since the pirated version is DRM-free, many gamers consider it a better product than the DRMed one that Electronic Arts is trying to sell.
So, there is a "three install limit" for these, but what about games that require activation via Steam?

I have not heard (though I have not looked) about people complaining about HL2, Portal, etc on Steam.

Granted, you can transfer your Steam games from computer to computer indefinitely (as far as I can tell), but my biggest complaint is that once I am done with the game, I am stuck with it. I have been selling many of my console games and old computer games when I complete them, if I am not going to play them again. This is one reason I will always opt for physical media (games, movies, music) over downloaded content, as I have the potential to recoup cost later.

With EA's policy, I could still potentially sell it and get away with it, if it has only been installed once or twice. With Steam, it's game over.
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-08, 07:51 AM   #8
Easy
DVD Talk Gold Edition
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Missouri, USA
Posts: 2,188
Quote:
Originally Posted by taffer View Post
It requires you to authenticate via the internet upon installing. So if you don't have online access on the PC you plan to install it on, you are screwed. The worst part is that it can only be authenticated a total of three times. After the third time, you need to contact EA and have them reset the count. EA reviews it on a case-by-case basis, and they are not obligated to actually reset it. Basically, you will be treated as if you are pirate. So if you format your hard drive or uninstall and reinstall the game three times for whatever reason, your disc potentially becomes a $60 coaster.

Spore and the Crysis: Warhead expansion are not the first games to do this. Bioshock did it too.
I don't see how online authentication is any different than steam. I personally didn't like steam but it is widely accepted.
True. Bioshock did it too and there was a backlash against the game. I didn't buy it because of that... later purchased on 360. One of my favorite games ever.
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-08, 07:54 AM   #9
RichC2
DVD Talk Hero
 
Join Date: May 2001
Posts: 25,632
Quote:
Originally Posted by Easy View Post
Yeah, thats what killed it for me. Well, that and the fact that nvidia can't write a decent driver to save their ass. So I bought a console for what it would have cost to upgrade the video card (never mind the whole computer) and never looked back. Fuck 'em.
I never had an issue with nvidia drivers, ATI on the otherhand.. uggggh.

That said, no, DRM isn't the problem imo and the people who posted those reviews on Amazon were organized to do so, it's stupidity above all else.

I don't get what it's trying to solve myself, as Spore an BioShock show -- it isn't preventing the pirated editions from getting out there. And last I checked, standard keys were still working great for preventing online play.

*shrug*

Quote:
Originally Posted by Easy View Post
I don't see how online authentication is any different than steam. I personally didn't like steam but it is widely accepted.
True. Bioshock did it too and there was a backlash against the game. I didn't buy it because of that... later purchased on 360. One of my favorite games ever.
Steam isn't strict, which is why people like it. You download your game, make it playable offline and you're set. Do that as many times as you want, hell do it on different computers if you want.

The current DRM that EA uses requires you authenticate everytime you install, which is fine, but you only get to 3 times, and apparently changing out computer hardware requires you authenticate again. Once those 3 times are up, you have to call EA everytime you want to install the game.

That seems to be the big "Gotcha" point to a lot of people, and quite frankly, it doesn't make a lot of sense to me either.

Last edited by RichC2; 09-17-08 at 07:59 AM.
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-08, 08:35 AM   #10
Easy
DVD Talk Gold Edition
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Missouri, USA
Posts: 2,188
Quote:
Originally Posted by RichC2 View Post
Steam isn't strict, which is why people like it. You download your game, make it playable offline and you're set. Do that as many times as you want, hell do it on different computers if you want.
Well, what I wrote could have been expressed better so let me try again. There are two issues.

1. Steam. Even if you buy a retail box, say "Orange Box" for example, it won't play out of the box. You have to go online and authenticate (and allow a load of steam shit to install on your computer). That was taffer's first gripe... and mine. I simply didn't like it.

2. Install only three times. I know this isn't connected to steam. My point was that there was a backlash against Bioshock when they did this and that was the reason I didn't buy the game on PC at the time. I saw and interview withe the developer later and regret was expressed and they said the restriction would be removed (or the number increased) but I have no idea if that ever happened.

Last edited by Easy; 09-17-08 at 08:44 AM.
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-08, 08:37 AM   #11
maingon
DVD Talk Platinum Edition
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Traverse City, MI
Posts: 3,932
i could care less about drm in a game
__________________
Compositor/ VFX Artist
Credits Include:
-Green Lantern (2011)
-Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows Part 2 (2011)
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-08, 08:51 AM   #12
kms_md
DVD Talk Gold Edition
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: waiting for forum.dvdtalk.com ...
Posts: 2,755
as others have noted elsewhere in this thread, drm will not kill pc gaming - ridiculous hardware requirements will (if they have not yet). granted, console gaming is viewed by some as "limited" given the hardware and input constraints, but i have yet to be disappointed.
__________________
recursive - adj. see recursive
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-08, 09:31 AM   #13
Tracer Bullet
DVD Talk Legend
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: IND Crosstown
Posts: 24,374
Quote:
Originally Posted by Decker View Post
I think what will most likely "kill" PC gaming is the high demands that the new cutting-edge PC games put on the computers. If you need a new supercomputer every two years to stay current with the hot games, then there isn't going to be a very big market for those games; especially when most can be played quite well on a $199 console.
I really don't understand this argument- you can play more games on marginal hardware than you ever could in the past. Sure, if you want the new "handjob" feature in Crysis you'll need to upgrade to a Geforce 5343411, but only hardcore gamers care about getting the most out of the game. Most people just want it to run.
__________________
I do Tracer's bidding! -Slop101
Third World countries are worthy of our derision. -Sean O'Hara
Personally, I would say that Tracer Bullet is leading you in the wrong direction. -Supermallet
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-08, 09:35 AM   #14
Decker
DVD Talk Hero
 
Decker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Vegas, Baby!
Posts: 25,648
Quote:
Originally Posted by maingon View Post
i could care less about drm in a game
Spoken like someone who never tried to move XBLA games from one console to another.
__________________
Xbox Live: Decker 01........... My 360's Blog
PSN Gamertag : Decker01

GAME CENTER ID : DECKER 01

I haven't seen Evil Dead 2.....yet.
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-08, 09:39 AM   #15
RichC2
DVD Talk Hero
 
Join Date: May 2001
Posts: 25,632
Quote:
Originally Posted by Decker View Post
Spoken like someone who never tried to move XBLA games from one console to another.
I've gone through 4 X360s and have never had an issue with XBLA DRM, being logged on isn't a problem.

As for Hardware requirements being ridiculous... they really aren't. Crysis is one thing, everything that isn't Crysis is another thing altogether. Fast computers are relatively cheap and an excellent video card can be had at the $100 range. More than a console? Sure, but still more versatile.
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-08, 10:15 AM   #16
SunMonkey
DVD Talk Limited Edition
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: Lake Ridge, VA
Posts: 5,868
Quote:
Originally Posted by RichC2 View Post
I've gone through 4 X360s and have never had an issue with XBLA DRM, being logged on isn't a problem.

As for Hardware requirements being ridiculous... they really aren't. Crysis is one thing, everything that isn't Crysis is another thing altogether. Fast computers are relatively cheap and an excellent video card can be had at the $100 range. More than a console? Sure, but still more versatile.
Exactly.
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-08, 10:38 AM   #17
fumanstan
DVD Talk Hero
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Rancho Santa Margarita, CA
Posts: 38,558
Nope, doesn't bother me at all. While it's a valid complaint, I don't think those that are actually being vocal really know or would be affected by the system. Hell, i've had to call Microsoft to re-activate Windows and didn't have a problem. Big whoop.

PC Gaming isn't dying, and DRM isn't as big a problem for PC Games as people make it seem.
__________________
3x Sheep Champion

VG Round 1b | VG Round 7 | NFL
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-08, 11:01 AM   #18
bee_01
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 556
PC gaming will be alive as long as Blizzard is around.
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-08, 04:08 PM   #19
mhg83
DVD Talk Hall of Fame
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 9,338
Quote:
Originally Posted by SunMonkey View Post
I don't think these types of DRM systems have anything to do with stopping piracy. What they effectively do is stop the secondary market. If you want a copy without illegally downloading it, you must buy it new.
Heres where a moral dilema comes into play.If you've installed the game three times and dont wanna call EA up, is it right to download it illegally? If you've already purchased the game legally then there shouldn't be a problem.
__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spottedfeather View Post
Well, they kiss where they think that Jesus was born. They kiss the little catholic cracker. They worship Mary.....
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-08, 04:44 PM   #20
taffer
DVD Talk Ultimate Edition
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 4,872
Quote:
Originally Posted by bee_01 View Post
PC gaming will be alive as long as Blizzard is around.
Yep. Diablo 3 and Starcraft 2 coming out soon and only for PC. How much hell will be raised if they have DRM protections?
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-08, 05:26 PM   #21
Baron Of Hell
DVD Talk Ultimate Edition
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Seattle and sometimes hell
Posts: 4,284
Quote:
Originally Posted by taffer View Post
Yep. Diablo 3 and Starcraft 2 coming out soon and only for PC. How much hell will be raised if they have DRM protections?
None. I don't think these two games are using the BS drm spore is.
__________________
"Truth has become unacceptable and dissent unpatriotic"
PS3 Tag: Baron-Of-Hell Steam: Baron_Of_Hell
SSBB: 4425-3985-1734 TWITTER: BaronOfHell
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-08, 05:41 PM   #22
darkside
DVD Talk Legend
 
darkside's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: San Antonio
Posts: 19,837
Piracy is already hurting PC gaming and this DRM actually feeds into that. For one it doesn't stop piracy. I can pirate both of these games easily, but it does make me less likely to buy them. PC gamers tinker with hardware and reinstall windows frequently. 3 installs is not nearly enough.

The thing I think is helping is Steam. Steam has DRM, but it isn't bullshit DRM like EA is using on its disc releases. If I buy Crysis Warhead there it will work on any PC I have my Steam account on and dealing with Steam and moving it to different PCs is very easy. At this point that is where I am buying all my PC games if the title has crap DRM like Spore.
__________________
DVDAF/DVD Profiler/Games
Wii Code: 6061 0636 6661 8088
PSN & XBL: aagstn
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-08, 06:40 PM   #23
boredsilly
DVD Talk Limited Edition
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 5,457
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tracer Bullet View Post
I really don't understand this argument- you can play more games on marginal hardware than you ever could in the past. Sure, if you want the new "handjob" feature in Crysis you'll need to upgrade to a Geforce 5343411, but only hardcore gamers care about getting the most out of the game. Most people just want it to run.
Yeah, for every Crysis like game that pushes hardware, there is a Spore or Sims Something game that doesn't. I'm primarily a console gamer, but that side of the coin officially stopped being reasonably priced in this generation for me. Prices are dropping now, but console pricing is still kind of crazy. $400 and $600 consoles at launch, $300 and $400 consoles now, $60 games, $50 controllers, and those 360 add-ons? Geez.

In a lot of ways, I think PC gaming is MORE reasonable than console gaming, especially if you already have a decent machine at home. A pc bought in the last 5 years, with a $150 video card (if that) thrown in can play most of the stuff I'm interested in. Not to mention PC games are usually released at a cheaper price than their console counterparts (many games being $30 or $40 on release day).

So yeah, I don't buy into the argument that PC gaming is too expensive. It does have its faults, but price isn't much bigger than on the console side of things if you ask me (especially if you already have a desktop).
__________________
XBL tag: johnnybvo
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-08, 07:04 PM   #24
fumanstan
DVD Talk Hero
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Rancho Santa Margarita, CA
Posts: 38,558
Quote:
Originally Posted by darkside View Post
Piracy is already hurting PC gaming and this DRM actually feeds into that. For one it doesn't stop piracy. I can pirate both of these games easily, but it does make me less likely to buy them. PC gamers tinker with hardware and reinstall windows frequently. 3 installs is not nearly enough.

The thing I think is helping is Steam. Steam has DRM, but it isn't bullshit DRM like EA is using on its disc releases. If I buy Crysis Warhead there it will work on any PC I have my Steam account on and dealing with Steam and moving it to different PCs is very easy. At this point that is where I am buying all my PC games if the title has crap DRM like Spore.
I think these copy protection methods aren't meant to directly affect the big downloaders and warez groups that crack these games; those guys will always find a way to do it and are savvy enough to get around this stuff.

What it really does is prevent the average user from just giving the game to buddies to share, or burning a disc for them and things like that. Things like having to emulate drives and mounting ISO's were the start. They're getting a little too crazy with this stuff, but honestly I don't think the average person or even the average gamer is affected. Like I said earlier, I've had to call MS to reactivate Vista and it was fairly painless. I don't know how well EA is handling this, but as long as it can be done quickly I think there's still a lot of overreaction to it.

As a side note, Blizzard games actually used a form of Securom in Warcraft 3 and Diablo 2.
__________________
3x Sheep Champion

VG Round 1b | VG Round 7 | NFL
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-08, 07:15 PM   #25
fumanstan
DVD Talk Hero
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Rancho Santa Margarita, CA
Posts: 38,558
Quote:
Originally Posted by boredsilly View Post
Yeah, for every Crysis like game that pushes hardware, there is a Spore or Sims Something game that doesn't. I'm primarily a console gamer, but that side of the coin officially stopped being reasonably priced in this generation for me. Prices are dropping now, but console pricing is still kind of crazy. $400 and $600 consoles at launch, $300 and $400 consoles now, $60 games, $50 controllers, and those 360 add-ons? Geez.

In a lot of ways, I think PC gaming is MORE reasonable than console gaming, especially if you already have a decent machine at home. A pc bought in the last 5 years, with a $150 video card (if that) thrown in can play most of the stuff I'm interested in. Not to mention PC games are usually released at a cheaper price than their console counterparts (many games being $30 or $40 on release day).

So yeah, I don't buy into the argument that PC gaming is too expensive. It does have its faults, but price isn't much bigger than on the console side of things if you ask me (especially if you already have a desktop).
Plus, for all the back and forth regarding backwards compatibility with the PS3 and 360, for the most part games a few years old can still be run on newer systems which means a lot of classics can remain playable down the line, with some needing just some slight tweaking.

It certainly makes the games library a lot larger when you can still play games from the late 90's.
__________________
3x Sheep Champion

VG Round 1b | VG Round 7 | NFL
  Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 10:48 PM.

Rules - DVD Talk - Archive - Privacy Statement - Top

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.2
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.2.0
Copyright 2011 DVDTalk.com All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.