BioShock 2 to Feature SecuROM DRM

January 22, 2010 -

2K Games announced this week that BioShock 2 will be available for pre-order on Steam, and that the game would be protected by SecuROM DRM software, much to the dismay of gamers who had negative SecuROM experiences with the first BioShock (which launched with an activation limit). 

In response to the uproar, 2K Community Manager Elizabeth Tobey responded on the 2K Forums with the following clarification:

BioShock 2 is using a standard Games for Windows Live activation system, much like other games you have played in the past. That doesn't mean you always have to be online to play or save the game - you can create an offline profile for the Single Player portion of the game (you just won't earn achievements and you can't play Multiplayer, of course.)

We are using SecuROM only as a disc check method for the retail copy of BioShock 2. That is it's only use.

Tobey later confirmed that SecuROM will only be used as a disc check but that activation will be done through Games for Windows Live—a revelation that may have PC gamers groaning given GFWL's less than stellar reputation.  Furthermore, GFWL will place restrictions on your ability to save without creating a profile, and will require online activation even for single-player mode.

While the BioShock 2 DRM scheme appears to be less restrictive than the DRM included with the launch version of the original BioShock, players will still have to contend with Games for Windows Live which has had a checkered history in games like Dawn of War 2, Fallout 3 and Grand Theft Auto IV.

In September 2008, EA was slapped with a class-action lawsuit over their use of SecuROM in Spore, but such a lawsuit is unlikely for 2K Games given the limited role they claim that SecuROM will have.


Dan Rosenthal is a legal analyst for the games industry.

42 comments

Guest Column: On TSA Laptop Searches

January 19, 2010 -

Sooner or later, most gamers will face the dreaded scenario of having to leave their desktop PC's and consoles behind and suffer through the misery of modern air travel.

Domestic travelers have become familiar with intrusions and searches at Transportation Security Administration security checkpoints. But as the ACLU has recently discovered, international travelers are not only having their laptops seized and searched by Customs and Border Protection, but agents are making copies of files and giving them to third-party agencies. The ACLU filed a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the government, which turned over hundreds of pages of documents revealing startling information about how much access—and how little oversight—agents have to your gaming laptops when you travel.

For instance, over a period of nine months, CBP agents searched over 1,500 devices, including laptops, thumb drives, cell phones, and DVDs. Last year, agents transferred 282 files from these devices to third-parties. Under current policy, CBP is not required to justify the searches. Interestingly, of those files, only four were justified under "national security" concerns, and apparently encrypted files were sent to unknown agencies for "translation/decryption".

Several spreadsheets containing summaries of the data (as well as detailed information on each incident, if you're so inclined) are available from the ACLU; a further list of documents and correspondence released from CBP can be found here.

Dan Rosenthal is a legal analyst for the games industry.

GP: Dan offers a unique vantage point to a lot of the topics we talk about here and it's our hope that he'll contribute more pieces going forward. Please welcome him aboard!

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james_fudgeshouldn't that be marked as an editorial? There's a lot of opinion in it.11/24/2014 - 12:49pm
WonderkarpI try to direct gamergate away from the same old antagonists. The least talk about Quinn or Wu or Sarkeesian, the more they can talk about the real issues. Its why I've rarely ever mentioned them on my twitter, unless there's like a giant news development11/24/2014 - 12:46pm
Andrew EisenHoly Metamucil, that Blogjob article is STILL propagating the same Grayson/Quinn horse poop!11/24/2014 - 12:30pm
Andrew EisenWell, to be clear, no one manually added your name.11/24/2014 - 12:26pm
Andrew EisenOh, and I know Harper's Twitter handle but that isn't the name on the list you linked to nor was she ever mentioned by name. Hence my subsequent confusion. The name on the list was something like randi_ebooks. But yeah, that's still Harper. Same list.11/24/2014 - 12:25pm
WonderkarpABC reporter admits they chose Harassment angle over coruption when reporting #GamerGate http://blogjob.com/oneangrygamer/2014/11/gamergate-abc-reporter-admits-they-chose-harassment-coverage-over-corruption/11/24/2014 - 12:25pm
Wonderkarpnah. I was miffed, but I got my apology. Now I think its hilarious that htey put me in that. I told my friend and cohost of my lets plays once I move, and she said she's gonna try to make the list XD. I told her "Just follow these people"11/24/2014 - 12:24pm
Andrew EisenHeh, looks like we confirmed it at the same time!11/24/2014 - 12:15pm
Andrew EisenYep, it was a pseudonym. By the by, there's an appeals process to be whitelisted if that's still a concern of yours.11/24/2014 - 12:15pm
WonderkarpI wasnt 100% certain so I confirmed it.11/24/2014 - 12:13pm
Wonderkarpyeah. Randi Harper is @FreeBSDGirl, Its her list.11/24/2014 - 12:09pm
Andrew EisenAre you sure? Because, again, I'm pretty sure it had a different name and author. Was it a pseudonym or something?11/24/2014 - 11:57am
Wonderkarpno, Randi Harper designed the list that IGDA used.11/24/2014 - 11:53am
Andrew EisenI was going to ask yesterday but isn't that a different list than the one IGDA has up a few days ago? Shout box doesn't go back that far but I'm pretty sure the list had a different name and author.11/24/2014 - 11:51am
WonderkarpBlocklist Author Randi Harper accused of Doxxing Someone on the List http://theralphretort.com/time-caught-blocklist-dunce-randi-harper-doxing-someone/11/24/2014 - 10:56am
ZippyDSMleehttp://www.vgcats.com/comics/?strip_id=35311/24/2014 - 9:46am
WonderkarpDay 4 of my Amiibos. Still Unopened. Now pegged too a wall. I just love the packaging too much11/24/2014 - 8:12am
PHX Corp@Jessy I actually saw it on gamespot, seems that Nintendo accidently turned Samus into a Badass11/23/2014 - 9:28pm
Jessy HartAnybody else see the Samus Amiibo with 2 arm canons?11/23/2014 - 9:10pm
Andrew EisenNeo - If you're not bleeding then it's probably not you who needs to go to the doctor.11/23/2014 - 5:45pm
 

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