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EA copy protection taken to new heights

YEPP

Senior member
Jul 30, 2006
385
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Spore, Mass Effect PC to Require Online Validation Every Ten Days to Function

BioWare technical producer Derek French has said that the PC versions of both Mass Effect and Spore will make use of copy protection that will require online validation every ten days to continue working.

"After the first activation, SecuROM requires that [Mass Effect PC] re-check with the server within ten days (in case the CD Key has become public/warez'd and gets banned)," said French in a post on the BioWare forums.

If customers do not come online after ten days, the game will cease to function. "After 10 days a re-check is required before the game can run," added French.

The check is run when users activate the game's executable file, with the first re-check coming within "5 days remaining in the 10 day window."

According to French, Maxis' Spore will also make use of the same scheme: "[Electronic Arts] is ready for us and getting ready for Spore, which will use the same system."

French also noted that the online requirement will be clearly labeled on the games' packaging.
http://www.shacknews.com/onearticle.x/52547

http://masseffect.bioware.com/...topic=628375&forum=125

What are your thoughts? I'm seriously put off for two games i was interested in buying. This is just too much, having to worry my internet not going down just to play a game. If this is the future of PC gaming, guess i'll just stick to consoles. PC gaming is expensive to keep up and now this extra hassle to deal with. Too intrusive too for my liking, i'm going to have to let EA know everytime i play their game in order to play a game.

Mass Effect will also have a 3 time activation limit for installation on different systems to boot according to French.

Update:

Electronic Arts Responds to Copy Protection Outcry, Removes 10-day SecuROM Check for the Troops

BioWare producer Derek French recently caused an uproar after announcing that copy protection on the PC editions of Mass Effect and Spore would require online validation every 10 days in order for the games to continue functioning.

In the face of increasing pressure, BioWare and publisher Electronic Arts today relented, updating the official Mass Effect PC FAQ to note that validation will now only be required when the player downloads new game content.

Q: If the game isn't going to require an authentication every 10 days, will it ever require re-authentication?

A: Only if the player chooses to download new game content.

Electronic Arts also released a statement mentioning that Spore's copy protection will be similarly changed to allow for offline play, only requiring validation on a patch or game content update.

The publisher further noted that the protection will still only allow users to authenticate each game on up to three computers. Approval of further authorizations will be handled by EA customer support on a case-by-case basis. Neither game will require players to have the disc in their computer in order to play or validate them.

BioWare community manager Jay Watamaniuk broke the news on the company's official forums.

"To all the fans including our many friends in the armed services and internationally who expressed concerns that they would not be able re-authenticate as often as required, EA and BioWare want you to know that your feedback is important to us," said Watamaniuk.
http://www.shacknews.com/onearticle.x/52618

http://masseffect.bioware.com/...topic=629059&forum=125

So the ten day revalidation is gone, but the games are still limited to a lifetime activation of three. Along with the DRM/Securom.
 

Lithan

Platinum Member
Aug 2, 2004
2,919
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This is hilarious. It'll be cracked in a matter of hours after release.
 

QuantumPion

Diamond Member
Jun 27, 2005
6,010
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If they do this then I might pirate it out of spite, even though I can afford to buy it legally and would have otherwise.
 

mindcycle

Golden Member
Jan 9, 2008
1,901
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76
Yeah, it will be cracked no doubt. Thing is, I like this better than having to have the disc in the drive every time I fire up the game. I have a constant connection so it won't bother me. For those who don't I can see it being a huge problem.

What a waste of time and money DRM is any more. I wonder why more developers don't take a hint from developers like Stardock (Sins of a Solar Empire) and their publisher. Make a great game without copy protection and people will gladly pay for it. Don't hinder your "paying customers" from being able to play the game they legally bought with crap like cd checks and validation. The pirates are the ones who always get the better end of the stick on this issue.
 

wanderer27

Platinum Member
Aug 6, 2005
2,171
15
81
Originally posted by: mindcycle
Yeah, it will be cracked no doubt. Thing is, I like this better than having to have the disc in the drive every time I fire up the game.
You sure about that?

Who's to say they don't do both? Sure wouldn't surprise me.


I have to say, if this is true, what minor interest I had in Spore is now extinguished - ya'll have fun with that . . . .



 

ja1484

Platinum Member
Dec 31, 2007
2,438
1
0
Originally posted by: Lithan
This is hilarious. It'll be cracked in a matter of hours after release.

I hope so, because I ain't buying Mass Effect until there's some way to disable this. Legal or not doesn't really matter to me. I'll buy a legit copy, always do, but I'm not going to be treated like a criminal for paying good money for a product.


And I'm with Quantum - this makes me want to pirate it just because.
 

brandonb

Diamond Member
Oct 17, 2006
3,731
2
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They really need to go back to the drawing board on this logic.

My brother used to crack Commodore 64 games.

He would say "If there is copy protection, all you have to do is make the program think that the copy protection check succeeded." If it checked the disk for a certain sector on the drive, used a code wheel that you had to spin around in your hand, or find a word in a manual, there is a point in the software where it does this:

if copy-protection-check = succeeded then continue, else exit program with error.

All the hacker needs to do is remove that "if" and just say "continue."

Even if these games are checking the internet for cd key hacking/violating, all the hackers need to do is make the program think it succeeded and continue.

BTW. He said Airborne Ranger was the hardest game to crack... So Kudos to those who programmed that copy protection, whoever they may be.
 

Jax Omen

Golden Member
Mar 14, 2008
1,654
2
81
Prediction: Spore will be the most-pirated game this year. Mass Effect would be up there except everyone who cares already played it on Xbox.



And yeah, it makes me want to pirate it. Instead, I'll probably buy the game then run a crack to circumvent the intrusive DRM. It's what I did with Bioshock >_>
 

mindcycle

Golden Member
Jan 9, 2008
1,901
0
76
Originally posted by: wanderer27
Originally posted by: mindcycle
Yeah, it will be cracked no doubt. Thing is, I like this better than having to have the disc in the drive every time I fire up the game.
You sure about that?

Who's to say they don't do both? Sure wouldn't surprise me.


I have to say, if this is true, what minor interest I had in Spore is now extinguished - ya'll have fun with that . . . .
Yeah, I read it won't require you to have the cd in the drive. http://www.rpgwatch.com/#8894
 

wanderer27

Platinum Member
Aug 6, 2005
2,171
15
81
Originally posted by: mindcycle
Originally posted by: wanderer27
Originally posted by: mindcycle
Yeah, it will be cracked no doubt. Thing is, I like this better than having to have the disc in the drive every time I fire up the game.
You sure about that?

Who's to say they don't do both? Sure wouldn't surprise me.


I have to say, if this is true, what minor interest I had in Spore is now extinguished - ya'll have fun with that . . . .
Yeah, I read it won't require you to have the cd in the drive. http://www.rpgwatch.com/#8894
Well that's a positive, albeit a very minor one.

I also have to wonder if this is going to cause gameplay issues (Bioshock anyone)?

What else are they going to be "collecting" from you on all these phone home checks?

No, this is just way too Draconian for my likes.
 

mindcycle

Golden Member
Jan 9, 2008
1,901
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76
Originally posted by: wanderer27
Originally posted by: mindcycle
Originally posted by: wanderer27
Originally posted by: mindcycle
Yeah, it will be cracked no doubt. Thing is, I like this better than having to have the disc in the drive every time I fire up the game.
You sure about that?

Who's to say they don't do both? Sure wouldn't surprise me.


I have to say, if this is true, what minor interest I had in Spore is now extinguished - ya'll have fun with that . . . .
Yeah, I read it won't require you to have the cd in the drive. http://www.rpgwatch.com/#8894
Well that's a positive, albeit a very minor one.

I also have to wonder if this is going to cause gameplay issues (Bioshock anyone)?

What else are they going to be "collecting" from you on all these phone home checks?

No, this is just way too Draconian for my likes.
Agreed. They really just need to wake and and realize that copy protection does nothing but irritate paying customers.
 

Jax Omen

Golden Member
Mar 14, 2008
1,654
2
81
I just showed this link to my girlfriend and her jaw hit the floor. She *was* looking forward to Spore...
 

mindcycle

Golden Member
Jan 9, 2008
1,901
0
76
I'm still going to buy both probably.. already have Mass Effect pre-ordered. No reason to punish the game developer for a decision their publisher actually made.

Edit: At least that's the way I think it works.. could be wrong
 

Zenoth

Diamond Member
Jan 29, 2005
5,086
105
106
The thing about Spore is that there's little goal or fun playing it off-line. Similarly to a multi-player focused game like TF2 for example, who in their right mind would want to crack TF2 to play alone or only via servers dedicated for pirated copies with perhaps 20 people playing at night? I mean Spore is focused on user-content-creation and the sharing of that content throughout some nice network that EA will put up for it, it's a "family" sort of game.

I know I don't like EA very much, but Spore for me is certainly not a game to buy or pirate if all I want if play it off-line with whatever little features off-line will offer with it. That game is multi-player focused, and everybody is going to need a legic Key to play it on-line which means that cracking it won't bring the pirates anywhere worth it with that game, they'll need to buy it just like they'd need to buy TF2 and get a Steam account to play it "properly" and as intended with the on-line community.

As for Mass Effect, who cares? That game looks more boring than the latest Turok.
 

wanderer27

Platinum Member
Aug 6, 2005
2,171
15
81
Originally posted by: Zenoth
The thing about Spore is that there's little goal or fun playing it off-line. Similarly to a multi-player focused game like TF2 for example, who in their right mind would want to crack TF2 to play alone or only via servers dedicated for pirated copies with perhaps 20 people playing at night? I mean Spore is focused on user-content-creation and the sharing of that content throughout some nice network that EA will put up for it, it's a "family" sort of game.

I know I don't like EA very much, but Spore for me is certainly not a game to buy or pirate if all I want if play it off-line with whatever little features off-line will offer with it. That game is multi-player focused, and everybody is going to need a legic Key to play it on-line which means that cracking it won't bring the pirates anywhere worth it with that game, they'll need to buy it just like they'd need to buy TF2 and get a Steam account to play it "properly" and as intended with the on-line community.

As for Mass Effect, who cares? That game looks more boring than the latest Turok.
Hmmm, if Spore is basically MMOG then this doesn't really matter, I won't be getting it anyway.

MMO's just eat up too much time and set your schedule. I prefer to play when I can and when I want, not when I NEED too to accomplish/achieve something.

I was really under the impression that this was a Single player game. Guess I was way off base on this one . . . .


 

Jax Omen

Golden Member
Mar 14, 2008
1,654
2
81
It *IS* a single-player game. The gameworld is populated with other players creations, though.
 

jdoggg12

Platinum Member
Aug 20, 2005
2,685
11
81
Originally posted by: QuantumPion
If they do this then I might pirate it out of spite, even though I can afford to buy it legally and would have otherwise.
+1
 

l0cke

Diamond Member
Dec 12, 2005
3,790
0
0
Originally posted by: jdoggg12
Originally posted by: QuantumPion
If they do this then I might pirate it out of spite, even though I can afford to buy it legally and would have otherwise.
+1
+2


Honestly, I hate EA!
 

Piuc2020

Golden Member
Nov 4, 2005
1,716
0
0
These guys have a multi-billion company and probably have a lot of talented people... and yet they don't know this?

By this, I mean, the games will be cracked a week (if not earlier) from their release, tops, and even if they somehow manage to make uncrackable security (which is practically impossible) then no one will pirate the game but oh surprise! game sales will remain the same if not go down even.

This irritates paying customers and it's really an inconvenience, what if servers are down? What if my ISP is down? What if I am on vacation and can't get internet access? Come on, whatever happened to using a product freely, god, these corporations are now so greedy ,ugh, I'm starting to hate PC Gaming, to be honest the entire gaming industry is just degenerating, I miss the good ol' days when gaming was just, you know, made by people so it was meant to be fun.

Whatever, I'll probably just use a crack that completely removes activation and the like, yeah, in case you didn't know, pirates enjoy games a lot more than paying customers! They get the best experience.
 

potato28

Diamond Member
Jun 27, 2005
8,964
0
0
It'll be cracked as soon as someone gets it. I hate DRM, and I love playing games without any of that crap. That's why Steam actually works, the DRM is integrated into the system and flows with the games, it doesn't impede you playing it.
 

Skunkwourk

Diamond Member
Dec 9, 2004
4,662
1
81
Thats retarded, if they want to go that route they should just do cd-key checks for every patch release. Every 10 days??? thats nuts.
 

ToBYourself

Member
Feb 7, 2007
35
4
71
While I'm not fond of the draconian type of copy-protection being employed (and yes, I do purchase StarDock titles -- Galactic Civ 2 and Sins of a Solar Empire -- to support them because they don't have copy protection), I do have another concern.

I don't respect EA, nor do I trust them. Come to think of it, there's really no reason to trust *ANY* developer or publisher.

In essence, by buying the game, you're *TRUSTING* them to keep the "check" servers running forever. Anytime they *CHOOSE* to turn them off, games will cease to work for those who play by the rules.

How many times do people run older (and newer) games that the developer or publisher is out of business?

Imagine if *EVERY* game you own ceases to work as soon as a studio goes out of business, gets bought, or ceases to support a product.

How happy would *YOU* be?

I understand MMO's and other on-line games, but we're discussing single-player games (or single-player sides of games) ceasing to work *JUST BECAUSE*.

I was really looking forward to Spore.

Unfortunately, in the wonderful rural South, our ISP's aren't all they are cracked up to be.....we frequently have outages.....I can see wanting to play something and it not allowing me to play because my ISP is having problems again.

/rant




 

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