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Ubisoft tweaks Driver's always-on DRM, Skyrim to use Steam

By Matthew · 30 replies
Aug 17, 2011
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  1. As with most of the company's major game launches since early last year, Ubisoft planned to lace the PC version of Driver: San Francisco with its pesky always-on DRM. The…

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  2. Wendig0

    Wendig0 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,119   +121

    Here's an idea: Quit paying tons of money for licensing rights to DRM software and authentication servers, then lower your game prices so that people will be less tempted to pirate your games, and more likely to fork over the money to buy them. $50-$60 is way too high for games in this economy, but $25-$30 sounds more reasonable. For the crap Ubisoft has been putting out over the last few years, even $25 seems a bit generous. Let go of the corporate greed, become more customer-centric, and perhaps your prior history of douchebaggery will be forgotten, gaining you a few more customers.
  3. Id gladly pay $60 for skyrim though
  4. DeliciousPie

    DeliciousPie TS Member Posts: 41

    Treating customers like criminals turn them into criminals. Look at the success of Minecraft, which has DRM that consists of "hey, please don't pirate this game. If you do, and you like it, then please buy it". It's a huge success.
  5. gwailo247

    gwailo247 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,010   +18

    "Pirates are unaffected by the DRM while paying customers have to jump through hoops, and Ubisoft has to waste resources developing said hoops."

    That succinctly sums up the situation.

    When a customer has bought the game has to resort to downloading cracks and so forth in order to enjoy a game play experience with less hassle than the person who pirated the same software, there is a problem.
  6. yRaz

    yRaz TS Evangelist Posts: 2,146   +1,223

    I don't understand why they would waste money on developing DRM when it's going to get cracked anyway, sometimes before the game is even released.
  7. Benny26

    Benny26 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,535   +50

    What a real big shame. I've always been with Driver right from the beginning, but this is like salt to a wound.

    Looks like a console version is on the cards for me.
  8. KG363

    KG363 TS Guru Posts: 515   +9

    I would've bought a hard copy, but since it's on steam, time to pre-order skyrim
  9. Burty117

    Burty117 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 3,044   +794

    Ubisoft! Take note of what Bethesda is doing! They are using Steam!

    oow.. You haven't tried it yet? Well for all you Ubisoft Employees heres a link:


    Now i know what your thinking "Crazy! How is this any better than our DRM solution?"

    Well now you see, we only need to activate the game once and then we don't need an internet connection, so all laptopers can finally play your games on the move.

    Secondly the DRM protection has proven to work well and actually has figures to back this up unlike your "Successful" attempt.

    And Thirdly, it saves you a ton of cash which can be better spent on . . . I don't know, advertising? Or wait! I have an idea! . . . why not spend the extra million or so on the games themselves! Then they would sell like hot cakes!
  10. Cota

    Cota TS Enthusiast Posts: 513   +8

    Steam's offline mode is nothing more than a joke...

    Just wanted to get that clear, but im buying Skyrim in store, i just feel better to give fully price to a company like Bethesda and i like to know the CD's will be there in case of a post-apocalyptic "accident"
  11. I don't see how you can call Steam's offline mode a joke, you tell it to start in offline mode, and then you play your games... offline! Holy crap, what a concept. Do your trolling where people don't happen to be familiar with the content being talked about maybe.
  12. slamscaper

    slamscaper TS Booster Posts: 186   +35

    I have never purchased any of Ubisoft's games that contain this asinine DRM and I never will. There should be laws enacted to prevent publishers from using these tactics.

    Can you imagine if other software companies decided to use this shady DRM scheme? What would everyone say if Microsoft or Apple decided to cripple everyone's OS if their internet connection went down.

    What if Acronis automatically disabled their drive imaging software (regardless if you were in the middle of a backup) because your internet connection was interrupted? Would you just accept this behavior?

    How about if Adobe decided to prevent legitimate end-users from editing any images in Photoshop unless they're connected to the internet?

    Don't get me wrong, it's entirely understandable for a vendor to require an internet connection to "activate" their software, however forcing end-users to maintain a constant internet connection (or else) is way beyond unreasonable.

    No one should accept these tactics from Ubisoft or any other software company.
  13. Xclusiveitalian

    Xclusiveitalian TS Evangelist Posts: 706   +69

    You know what's funny, these games are hacked DRM free day 1, so what's the point of hurting the honest paying customer. I hope every game with a DRM like this is pirated and makes them little to no money.
  14. T77

    T77 TS Enthusiast Posts: 300   +6

    " you will require an active Internet connection so the game can perform an authentication check each time you want to launch it."
    "Some even admit that they wound up downloading a cracked version of games like AC2 after purchasing a legitimate copy."

    now there lies the basic flaw in the whole mechanism.it is surely very frustrating to have that check every time you start the game.In effect it actually promotes piracy as the user would want to get done with it in the first time itself.
    The user didn't pay to get irritated and frustrated,he paid for his enjoyment.It is a poor business strategy.
  15. colinf

    colinf TS Enthusiast Posts: 47   +7

    quick test of offline mode for you

    1. enable steam in offline mode
    2. turn off pc
    3. turn off/unplug internet connection
    4. restart pc
    5. attempt to play your steam games
    6. re-enable your internet to enable steam offline mode
  16. Burty117

    Burty117 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 3,044   +794

    Funny, I just tried that myself yet I can play my games fine?
  17. If someone wants to play the game in an area with no Internet access, they will have to go to the nearest cybercafe/wifi hotspot to authenticate and start the game, and then return home.
    It is an embarrassment for these companies that to play a legitimately bought game some sort of crack will eventually be required...
    Then why bother buying it? Heck, why waste time playing it, since it will most probably suck anyway?
  18. customcarvin

    customcarvin TS Enthusiast Posts: 103   +8

    No resetting of the pc here... start in offline mode, launch a game (even unplugged my ethernet cable to make sure)... pretty easy if you ask me.
    colinf, maybe you shouldn't post nonsense on a tech site since u dont know how to use a computer yet?? :p
  19. tonylukac

    tonylukac TS Evangelist Posts: 1,363   +67

    I really think you're all complaining about the wrong thing. SecureRom, in most cd/dvd games, actually ruins your os with an essential rootkit. Try burning ANY cd after installing a SecureRom game. I think this is better as it prevents some piracy. As for you all complaining about your internet connection being down, get dsl. My ATT dsl was down only twice in the last 3 years.
  20. Burty117

    Burty117 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 3,044   +794

    Not really, SecureROM is not featured in Steam, what (at least) I was arguing for was the use of steam.
  21. I'm just so happy Ubisoft only makes crap games. That way, I'm not really missing anything. I'm not buying Ubisoft games ever again, until they stop with this ridiculous online-DRM bullshit!
  22. Skyrim is using Steam!? ...Cancelled pre-order.
  23. I will buy Skyrim collectors edition to PS3 and download it to the PC. Why I'm doing this is simple, it's because of Steam, worst drm/bloatware I've ever have come across. And I to have stopped buying Ubisoft games a long time ago because of their intrusive drm.
  24. Steam is a rancid ****.
  25. Wow. All of you bashing steam are just wrong. The only real case you could claim is a negative towards steam is how EA backed out of selling games on Steam due to the DLC issues. And that's it, really. (albeit, a BIG "that's it" that we all hope gets fixed.)

    When was the last time any of you bashing steam actually tried using steam? 2006, when they had the worst customer service ever? or maybe back when they forced you to be online to play? Or was it before they had an interface that didn't make you want to claw your eyes out?

    It's time to move on people. Online game downloading services such as Steam are the future. You might not want to admit it, and you may want your precious hard copies, ignoring the eventual and inevitable fall of the CD rom drive, but I'm as happy as can be with Steams service. I have been for the past 3 years.

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