Mass Effect DRM causing headaches for gamers

By Justin Mann on June 18, 2008, 9:00 AM
Last month, many reports came out on the obscene DRM that Bioware and EA were planning to deploy on newer games, Mass Effect and Spore in particular. The outcry from the community led to a quick backtracking of their original goals. EA, for instance, opted to dispose of the “phone-home” functionality of the DRM and instead switched to a limited activation policy. In essence, the software would no longer phone home every 10 days but could only be installed 3 times.

That “friendlier” but still unfriendly method of authentication has now proven itself to be flawed, as it seems that people are burning through activations so quickly that they have used them up less than a month after purchasing the game. Something as simple as replacing a video card can use up an activation, and gamers who constantly upgrade would obviously be hit by this pretty quickly. Interestingly, the solution provided by EA was for someone to buy another copy of the game.

A single OS reinstall followed by a GPU replacement leading to someone being forced to buy another copy of a game or do without seems pretty ridiculous, and just goes to show how DRM is nothing more than companies punishing paying customers rather than punishing pirates.

User Comments: 5

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thejedislayer said:
This comes as no surprise from EA. Goal: Get rich. The more they try and **** their customers over, the more we'll see counter-software by third parties to fight such BS. Hell, the way I see it, EA is actually promoting the usage of illegal pirating and the usage of tools to hack their games, as well. By forcing the customer to seek other alternatives for a game they legally bought. Rofl. I say have at it EA. You seem like you're becoming like the RIAA in ways.
Nirkon said:
"Interestingly, the solution provided by EA was for someone to buy another copy of the game. "what nerve...
therickster90 said:
I've had about enough of EA. I can't even play BFME II over my network because it checks cd keys so I can't play between my two computers in my own house.
black_adder said:
3 times?!?! Bahahaha.... thats ridiculous!!its not an OS, its a GAME... Well f*** that. I just wont bother buying them.And I though the whole 'you can only keep your official EAmanager Download for 3 months then you have to buy it again' thing was screwed up
mailpup said:
These are two games I won't be buying any time soon. This installation limitation is unrealistic. Buy another copy of the game? I'm not so addicted to games that I need these.I read where Bioshock has recently removed its installation limitation. I refused to buy this game too because of the limitation of installations. Although I heard it was a good game, I never missed it. I'll live without Mass Effect and Spore just fine.
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