Update: No company enjoys a well-publicized backlash while launching a new product and Square Enix is no exception. They have backtracked and will allow jailbroken devices to play Deus Ex: The Fall with an upcoming update.
The first mobile version of Deus Ex recently hit the iTunes App Store but not without a bit of controversy. A number of gamers have discovered some interesting behavior when run on a jailbroken iOS device.
When launching Deus Ex: The Fall for the first time, players are shown a cut scene and given a basic tutorial. After that, it’s gaming as usual… until you try to fire your gun. If you are using a jailbroken device, you’ll be presented with a popup that says you can’t fire on jailbroken devices.
The move is clearly designed to prevent app piracy but perhaps Square Enix didn’t go about it the right way. Banning a device from playing the game under the assumption that all people who jailbreak are pirates just seems wrong. In fact, there are several instances on Reddit and on the iTunes App Store where people claim to have paid for the game and are still being punished simply because they are playing on a device they own and legally modified.
This isn’t the first time that a developer has taken a proactive approach to piracy. Earlier this year, Greenheart Games released Game Dev Tycoon, a business simulator that lets uses relive the history of the gaming industry step by step.
In the event that a user pirated the game, however, they’d be met with an unexpected situation. Once you’ve progressed in the game a little ways, you’ll receive a sales report that highlights the dangers of piracy and how people are pirating your hit titles. It’s all downhill from there as there’s essentially no way to win and you’re eventually forced into bankruptcy.