One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

March 29, 2010 -

An avid PC gamer, initially “irate” at Ubisoft’s new DRM technology, has come full circle and decided that the technology “just isn’t that bad.”

Ubi’s DRM, of course, requires a constant Internet connection to play and is enacted on the recent games Silent Hunter 5 and Assassin’s Creed II.  A HookedGamers.com editorial on the subject details why the author changed his stance, following some time spent with the PC version of AC II. The author believes that the vast majority of PC gamers would already possess a constant Internet connection and then, in order to mitigate the impact of DRM on gaming done outside of the home, goes on to detail the growing proliferation of wireless networks:

Again, considering the increasing ubiquity of internet access in planes, trains, and maybe one day, automobiles, Ubisoft's DRM doesn't seem any more restrictive than other implementations of DRM. It may even prove liberating, as gamers don't need to pack game DVDs when traveling - no CD/DVD check is required.

The piece then looks at hardware, specifically comparing the hacking of Ubi’s server to the dreaded red ring of death (RROD) that a high percentage of Xbox 360 users have experienced, or the outage PlayStation 3 users experienced earlier this month. The author writes, “Unfortunately, gamers are familiar with unreliable hardware and service interruptions,” and asks, “Is it fair to hold Ubisoft to a higher standard than other companies?”

The author comes so far that he is a veritable champion of Ubisoft by the end of his piece, writing:

Considering everything, Ubisoft's DRM treats PC gamers more like average PC users than criminals - it's hardly evil. Because it's an extension of conventional PC gamer behavior, and because it's leading the way in taking advantage of increasing connectivity, Ubisoft's DRM is ahead of its time.


GP:
“Liberating?” “Ahead of its time?” Someone's wearing rose-colored glasses.

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Comments

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

DRM like this is the worst kind (even worse than install limits) because:

1) not everyone has constant internet

2) the connection only has to hiccup for a sec to disconnect

3) you can't play even single player if the servers are down

4) hacker/pirates will ALWAYS find a way around, usually on day one

5) DRM just makes it harder on the paying customers

TBH I'm ok with disc checks and can grin and bear CD keys, but I steadfastly refuse to support this kind of DRM. I fully understand their reasons, but treating their paying customers like criminals is both disrespectful and ineffectual.

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

Okay I want to point out why are people bitching about this DRM policy but not steams own DRM policy which requires internet connect to play most of there games?

---- Rumblerumblerumber

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

Umm, maybe because you buy a game from Steam knowing you have an internet connection to start with. Or that even Steam lets you have the games offline, in case your internet goes tits up. So, if you don't have an internet connection, or a poor one, you wouldn't deal with Steam in the first place; you'd get your game some other way.

Ubisoft's PC version of AC2 does not have that capacity. There is no other (legal) option.

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

I understand companies wanting to protect the games that they work hard on invest money and hopefully make money off of. We would all want that. But any company that protects their product at the expense of their paying customers doesn't deserve my business or anyone else's. They want us to see their POCV about lost sales but they don't want to see things from theis customers' POV. Until they do I say f**k them. They can't look me in the eye and say if the show was on the other foot that they would have no problem complying with this ridiculous DRM.

PS I did email Ubisoft 3 days ago pointing this out in more detail along with other points. No response yet but I don't expect one.

"With free speech either all of it is ok or none of it is." Kyle Broflovski

"With free speech either all of it is ok or none of it is." Kyle Broflovski

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

I still say force these people to live in rural australia with our dodgy infrastructure and inconsistent speed and see if they think this "everyone's got permannent internet now" is still a valid argument

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

Erm... first off, the DRM does combat piracy. Just go to your favorite torrent site and look at the comments for any ACII post. Most people can not play the missions, hence they can not play the game. And the game has been out for a while. Most release groups have tried their hands at it and failed. They wouldn't be mounting a campaign on the servers if the DRM was useless. Botnets ain't free.

Also, the servers being down really caused a problem for two days after release. Then, we got a patch that permits playing and resuming even if the server connection can not be established. The worst you'll suffer is the launcher trying to contact the server for about 30 seconds before giving up and launching the game. Oh, and Ubisoft gave us a free game to appologize for that.

I can only conclude the whiners didn't actually buy the game and experience the DRM themselves, in which case their opinion has no value whatsoever. I was very weary of the DRM at first, but it truly isn't a hindrance. Much less so than fishing out the DVD whenever I want to play.

 

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

So you are claiming that the pirate groups attacked the servers, and not another group of haters? I do assume you have evidence for that VERY impressive claim?

And as for whiners not buying the game, yes I can believe that. I can believe that a US soldier who'd have to pay $150/month for an internet connection will whine about this game and not buy it, because he's been told he can't play without internet by Ubisoft. I can believe I didn't experience this DRM because I refuse to purchase a singleplayer game that requires internet, out of principle. I can also believe I was real bummed about this when my DNS poofed and I ended up not being able to play any game that could go online, thinking "man I'd have loved to play some ACII now to waste time, but that's impossible" and ending up playing through Max Payne twice.

And besides, when a game says you have to be online all the time and you don't think your connection can handle that, or you refuse out of principle, then I can understand them not experiencing, since, y'know, they didn't want to spend their money on it due to the DRM and thus didn't get the game at all.

 

Also, stating the opinion of those who act out of principle is invalid, doesn't really sound proper. You are labelling the opinions of 'your' opponents in a debate as invalid with as reason that you assume they don't know what they're talking about, so that they should shut up. That's the worst rubbish I've read around here ever since people said the hackers had no blame at all and that the buyers deserved the attacks. I assume, based on the GP articles, that cruiseship employees and US soldiers wouldn't really agree with you on the "you didn't buy+play so stfu" attitude you're showing.

Besides, they just have to go through it first? I could use that argument against every privacy-objection to security measures. "You should experience first before you complain," "you got nothing to hide so why object," stuff like that. Since when do we have to experience something before having the right to complain? Does that mean we should first get beaten up by people before we can object to people doing that? Or first get harassed everywhere we go before we get the right to say people shouldn't be harassed in their own homes? Does that mean we can't have an opinion about someone's family and employees being harassed by an attorney named Jack Thompson, if he hasn't gone after us first?

I know I object to those things out of principle, I never expect to go through those things myself. Things could be less worse than I imagine, in some or all cases, but I still preserve the right to disagree with it out of principle, as long as my opinion is based on logic, facts, truths and arguments.

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

All the author of this has really confirmed is that the "last mile" of his internet connection managed by his ISP has no outstanding issues. Good for you "avid gamer" you are part of the 1% of the population with a good connection to the internet. Yay for you. Sound the trumpets!

However your "opinion" about your ISP and their "always on" connection have nothing to do really with how good or bad Ubi's DRM is.

200% fail.

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM


GP:
“Liberating?” “Ahead of its time?” Someone's wearing rose-colored glasses.

Perhaps, but why comment on that when there was no official GP comment in the article about the server attacks? With so many anti-Ubisoft(-and-anti-everyone-who-still-buys-their-games) fanatics, a simple gullible idiot is almost refreshing.

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

Since this is a blog that just happens to invite discussion about the subjects it's written about, theres no such thing as an "Offical" comment.

Hunting the shadows of the troubled dreams.

Hunting the shadows of the troubled dreams.

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

"Considering everything, Ubisoft's DRM treats PC gamers more like average PC users than criminals - it's hardly evil. Because it's an extension of conventional PC gamer behavior, and because it's leading the way in taking advantage of increasing connectivity, Ubisoft's DRM is ahead of its time."

I lol'd HARD.

Ubisoft, leading the way in taking advantage of increasing connectivity? Even if Ubisoft WAS leading the way, I'd still think they're a bunch of assholes. Projects that take advantage of the internet made me think of Steam, Direct 2 Drive, Impulse, Amazon, iTunes (as much as I hate apple...) I mean, selling books, movies, music, and games online is a great idea.

Forcing me to stay online to use them is not a great idea. It is, in fact, a stupid idea, and whoever thought of it should just stick to drinking paint thinner, seeing as they probably can't get any worse.

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

He's either

1. Delusional

2. Paid  to write this by Ubisoft.

3. Under the beaten dog effect, where he accepts anything less than an install limit as kindness

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

This DRM does nothing to prevent piracy. If it did I still wouldn't support something so draconian, but at least I could see a valid point to the DRM. But instead the games still get cracked, the pirates still play, and me and you, the paying consumers get butt-raped. Well not this cowboy.

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

This guy is either delusional or a shill for Ubisoft.

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

Oh, I just love assumptions made about what PC gamers have access to. So this guy got on his high horse, then he realised it didn't affect him so it's all good? Awesome!

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

Just another Ubi shill.

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

Oh and just to illustrate, a mate of mine sent me a crack to use for if I ever borrow my bro's disk of the game. That was what, within a few weeks? For a non-rusher like me, it's not that bad a wait. So this drm does squat.

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

Author is simply ignorant.  According to recent FCC reports I've read (the ones where FCC is proposing companies give up bandwith so everyone can have better access), roughly 25% of the US is on broadband.

DRM that punishes non-savvy users while not tricking any half-motivated pirate is worthless and only erodes your actual consumer base.

recent DRM issues have actually created a whole new subset of piracy:  people who pirate the game BECAUSE of the DRM.

 

Here are we -- and yonder yawns the universe.

Here are we -- and yonder yawns the universe.

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

"recent DRM issues have actually created a whole new subset of piracy:  people who pirate the game BECAUSE of the DRM."

Seriously. Even the people who actually buy the game, how many of those end up pirating it anyway because the DRM is a pain in the rear to deal with? One reason it's stupid for companies to assume every "pirated" copy is a lost sale.
---
I'm not under the affluence of incohol as some thinkle peep I am. I'm not half as thunk as you might drink. I fool so feelish I don't know who is me, and the drunker I stand here, the longer I get.


---
I'm not under the affluence of incohol as some thinkle peep I am. I'm not half as thunk as you might drink. I fool so feelish I don't know who is me, and the drunker I stand here, the longer I get.

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

While I agree that not every pirated copy is a lost sale, you can't say that there aren't lost sales as a result of piracy.

---

You KILL Vampires. You don't DATE them.

--- With the first link, the chain is forged.

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

The article is a troll (even if unintentional).  He uses the standard talking points which are guaranteed to provoke a lot of people coming by to give him a piece of their mind.  Great way to drive up traffic on your site...

Even if the rest of the points were well made (they aren't), his apathetic "it's how it is so we should get used to it" writes him off for me.  I hate the sort of thinking particularly in a field with so much potential and with people coming up with better and more convenient ways for you to use and play the content you've purchased.

 

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

"Again, considering the increasing ubiquity of internet access in planes, trains, and maybe one day, automobiles, Ubisoft's DRM doesn't seem any more restrictive than other implementations of DRM."

He makes a good point: increased use of wireless makes it less likely that people will lose their Internet connection.

Wait, what?

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

I dunno about the costs of wifi, nor about its reliability, but I know a guy in an online game who couldn't be in some events and often dc'd in fights, and that was long disconnects. The problem here, though, is that a quick dc already kills you.

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

I wonder how much Ubisof is paying this "gamer" for his love of there crappy DRM since no sane gamer likes this drm

http://www.magicinkgaming.com/

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

Maybe it's some weird version of Stockholm syndrome kicking in?

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

My DNS server went kapoof a while ago, took me a while to get a dns server through my bro asking others. Would have loved playing AC2 during that time. I ended up playing Max Payne. Yes, part one.

And even if the majority has constant internet, that doesn't mean the rest has. And did we mention laptop players? A single-player game should not require internet, period.

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

Ubisoft's DRM is ostensibly to prevent piracy.

-Ubisoft's DRM does nothing to prevent piracy.

-Ubisoft's DRM inconveniences one or more consumers.

Therefore, Ubisoft should replace its DRM with something that combats piracy without inconveniencing any consumers.

The author writes, “Unfortunately, gamers are familiar with unreliable hardware and service interruptions,” and asks, “Is it fair to hold Ubisoft to a higher standard than other companies?”

Familiar with doesn't mean accepting of.  Ubisoft is held to the same standard that Microsoft and Sony are.  The standard being that the stuff we pay good money for should work.

 

Andrew Eisen

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

"Therefore, Ubisoft should replace its DRM with something that combats piracy without inconveniencing any consumers."

Like a unicorn.  Or maybe a chupacabra.

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

Nah, I don't see either of those having the desired result.  All the same, if your goal is to cobat piracy and you release a measure that not only doesn't do that but ends up irking a goodly portion or your customers, you have failed miserably.

 

Andrew Eisen

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

I'd simply release a LOT of fakes and have them mess up after 4 hours of gameplay.

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

Well that'd give you a chance to actually finish many of their games since they seem nowdays to be aiming for not only cinematic storytelling but also cinematic length...

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

Thereby punishing every user who wants to download a nodisc crack.  Nice.

(Of course, if your game didn't require a disc in the first damn place, customers wouldn't need nodisc cracks.)

(Of course, if you released a game that didn't require a disc check and flooded torrent sites with fakes, people would be able to verify the real version with a simple checksum.)

Re: One Gamer Warms up to Ubi DRM

Could be just me, but what's the problem with games that require the disk? Okay, so we got a lot of HD now, so no need to have half the game on the disk, but still, what's the problem? By the time you ever say "I want to play that game again" but can't find the disk, the bad cracks will have been purged.

 
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