Darkspore Goes Dark for Nine Days (And Counting) Thanks to DRM Issue [Updated]

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HunterB

And they wonder why people download ga.mes illegally

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genghiskhen

I have been unhappy with EA since I couldn't access my Sim City account to access DLC. Spore DRM pretty much ended me being an EA customer. I finally (unwillingly) swallowed Steam. I boycott Game for Windows games. Diablo III with be challenging though. I would like to boycott it, but I also don't want to punish myself for Blizzard's bad DRM.

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Archangel1976

Well! Add Darkspore to the list of games I'll never play.

Thank you for making this such an easy decision. When you make a DRM that is crap and prevents people from playing WHAT THEY PAID YOU FAIR PRICE FOR, don't be surprised or hurt when there is backlash.

Which reminds me, I still love and enjoy my original Warcraft 3 and Starcraft Battlechest. And the best part is.... I DON'T HAVE TO WORRY THAT THE MFG HAS DECIDED THEY DON'T WANT TO SUPPORT THE SERVER FOR THE DRM ANYMORE. That's the real suck of always online DRM. When the company decides they no longer care to support the online DRM.... you lose the game.

So....   here's my one finger salute to EA. Eat a fat one.

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stradric

Isn't DarkSpore an online game?  Isn't that the whole point?  How is it considered DRM if one of the fundamental requirements of the game is to have a connection?

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jekinney

Come on man.... DRM is a seperate issue. A seperate software to validate it is authentic. So if the DRM server is down, you can not play...

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stradric

I don't think that's correct.  The issue seems to be with the authentication system that's needed in order to connect to the hub where you would join matchmaking and find a game.  It's not some kind of separate license-verifying server that you seem to be suggesting.  At least that's the way RPS is reporting it (I didn't care to read the forums RPS linked to).

My take is that if a developer wants to design a game to be an online game, including an offline single player mode is optional provided they make it clear from the start.  You don't see too many people bitching about how WoW requires you to be online all the time -- because it's an online game.

If the developers behind Dark Spore didn't want to develop AI and other things necessary for offline single player mode, that's their decision.  Like any online game, if the servers go down, the users are s.o.l. It's the consumer's responsibility to be aware of these pitfalls and make informed decisions.

As far as Diablo 3, the concerns of "always online" are bit more legitimate because Blizzard is essentially forcing users to play the game the way they want users to play.  I understand their logic: they're dumping millions into developing these new online features and they want users to take advantage of them, and also don't want to waste any development time building single player features that bypass all the work they put into online mode.  I understand the users too: not everyone has reliable connections, Diablo is a very popular franchise that has traditionally allowed users to play offline, and users hate DRM in all forms outside of Steam.  In the end, no one is entitled to Diablo 3 so you either purchase it if it suits you or you ignore it completely.

Where I take issue is when people claim that they are somehow entitled to Diablo 3 so they're going to pirate the game -- essentially reinforcing the negative feedback loop of DRM and software piracy.  Buy it if you support it.  Ignore it if you don't.  That's the only way.

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ScytheNoire

Isn't it wonderful how DRM helps the paying customer! YEAH for DRM! Thanks EA!

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kiaghi7

Indeed, meanwhile the pirates simply don't use the DRM enabled code, and face NONE of these issues what so ever...

 

The DRM doesn't protect the game from piracy one iota, and meanwhile it causes complete failure of the whole mechanism for those adhering to EA's DRM rules...

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Ruins

I bought BF3 disc set and it would not install the game.  It only installed Origin.  No menu to install the game, but Origin wanted all kinds of personal information about me and access to all the files on my machine.

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majorsuave

I bought the game online on Origin. It installed without a hiccup and I have been able to play every single time I tried since day 1. The game never crashed on me.

I don't mind at all having to log in to Origin before firing the SP mode because I have been used to log on to Steam since September 03. 

I don't mind being always online because my PC is hooked to a router and a cable modem that are always on.

PC games, no matter which ones, tend to crash a lot when you have low specs, faulty memory, outdated drivers and such.

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kixofmyg0t

Thats exactly one of the main reasons why I choose PS3(that and from what I've heard the PC version crashes....ALOT. I've never had a game crash on PS3). No DRM, CD keys, connection dependent...none of that junk. Just put the disc in and play, thats it. 

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zepontiff

Yeah you only couldn't play new games you bought for the thing for over a month this summer. You totally pwned us there buddy!

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luusyphre

Oh I'm sorry, I think EGM is that way

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CaptainFabulous

You only have yourselves to blame. If you complain about always-online DRM yet still buy games that employ it you're part of the problem.

If we the people refuse to buy games with this "feature" publishers will quickly realize their ships are sinking and stop using it.

Unfortunately my faith in humans is at an all-time low and I don't expect this to ever happen. So all I can say is "eat it suckers, you were warned".

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bling581

Well, I would tend to agree, except it seems that most games have some form of DRM (at least the ones I own do) so if I were to protest with my money then there'd be little to play. There's gotta be a middle ground instead of just stopping gaming completely. Most of the time I don't have any issues with DRM, so do I boycott games just because someone I don't even know can't stand it? When it's obvious to the majority that a developer is bad (like Ubisoft) then I will stay away from their games but otherwise anything is fair game until I run into problems.

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someuid

Yeah, I tend to agree with you.  Everyone whines and complains about this, but as soon as some new screenshots come out, everyone drops their protest signs and runs for the pre-order page.

Pavlov's dogs were smarter than this.

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acidic

while not buying the titles would make them realize it has been a mistake. it would also just give them another excuse to completely abandon the PC platform totally

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HeartBurnKid

If all they're willing to give us is DRM-festooned crap, the PC platform doesn't need them anyway.

Someone else will fill the void; people like Stardock, CD Projekt, and Valve (yeah, they do DRM, but they do it right) will eat their lunch if they don't want it.

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joeyjr

I agree. but I think they also have there own agenda and really could care less. Its a conspiracy I say. Mo Ha ha haaaaaaaaa.LOL

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joeyjr

You guys hit the nail on the head. we know what the problems are, but we still have to suffer DRM woes, and nothing seems to change much. windows Live, DRM, always on, ect.. What happened too the customer is always right? Its all a corperate plan to control market share as far as I am conserned. EA is just another player in the mess. Heres one for you, just before the falling out with Steam and EA I could not play Battlefield 2 anymore, might have something to do with punk buster (which is another piece of crap DRM). After sending EA support and email for help I got noware ant the techniction stated I would have to re-install steam, yea right, like I have over 200 games and almost 300 if you add in the free stuff an DLC which is over a 1Tb of data. You would think with the almost 7 billion people in the world there would a smart person who could fix this mess. Later on, Months later, after I hade backed up all my games in preparation on getting a bigger Hard drive I attemped to re-install steam and then Battlefield 2. It still crashes before it completes installing, so I gave up and added it to the does not work catigory and un-installed it. What a pain just like DRM Sucks!!!!!!

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chipmunkofdoom2

The eternal struggle between the consumer and game developers boils down to this: they're both stubborn, they're both a little wrong, and they both feel like they've been wronged more than the other.

Pirates will say the reason they steal games is the price.. walking through Target yesterday, I shook my head in sadness when I was passing an aisle ending that displayed Black Ops for the low, low price of $60. When did that game come out?? And sitting right next to it was MW2 for $40 or $50, can't remember which. Not saying either one is a bad game, but is MW2 really worth $50 3 years later, and is Black Ops still worth the release price of $60?? Of course not.

Now look to the game studios.. they will say the outrageous price and DRM is BECAUSE people pirate. They will say that they need to make some money off their games, and while that is true, it's a little hard for the customer to swallow with that price tag AND these shenanigans going on.

Which came first, the piracy or the abuse of the customer by game developers? I don't know. I think honestly it's a little bit of both side getting greedy. Pirates wanted free games, and game developers wanted to get rich. Can't blame either side, because I would probably do the same if I was a pirate OR a game dev.. but that doesn't change the fact that it's unrealistic. The producers of video games need to start charging a fair price and cooling it with the DRM, but at the same time the PC gaming community needs to step up and start buying games. Now, I doubt either will ever happen. Both sides feel they've been so wronged that they're now unwilling to compromise. But that's what needs to happen.

 

EDIT: I should note I'm one of the stubborn.. I don't pirate games, though I may have in a previous life, but I'm certainly not buying the trash that's out now. No good games, no-good DRM, no sale. Perhaps that's another stipulation we should put on the game developers, actually producing worthwhile content??

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acidic

all companies should do the opposite of EA at all times anyways. i remember WAY BACK in the day when EA was actually a decent company and put out good games. now its just rush rush get as much out the door as possible

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stradric

"Rush, rush" yes.  "Get as much out the door as possible" no.  It's "get as little out the door as possible and trickle out the rest by way of DLC."

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acidic

i meant get as many games out the door as possible. remember back when these things called "expansion packs" came out for games ?? i do. they came out months AFTER the game released not hours or day 1. the whole dlc thing is just insane. how can you justify paying $5-15 more on a game the same day it came out ? that just shows that the material could have easily been included in the game to begin with yet they wanna milk the cash cow

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genghiskhen

I just wait until a game is a year or so old. Then I buy the game and all the DLC for $30. I did this for Dragon Age while everyone else was getting ready for Dragon Age 2. That way I can support the game publisher and not get ripped off.

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Gezzer

Yeah me too.

I remember when EA was the publishing company that was doing it the way it should be done. Without them I never would of been able to get Pinball Construction Set or M.U.L.E. for my Atari 800. Man those were some great games.

Some where along the line thay got way too big and forgot who they once were. All the quasi evil things EA has done over the years. Like buying up so many thriving developers, and slowly destroying thier good name to enhance profits. Then finally shutting them down because they've become a mere shell of what they once were and couldn't create a good game if they're life depended on it.

EA is the anti indie. It's now about making money and nothing else.

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Gezzer

 

I've got a few games with "always on DRM" with BF3 being the latest.

You know they're actually trying to make this seem less like a bad thing and more like a service. And in that regard it's not so bad when and if it works. Problem is when the BF3 website/DRM that masquerades as a game launcher is impossible to connect to because of the high volume it falls flat on it's face. Or a Ubisoft server gets overwhelmed. Or a bug prevents the game from connecting to the server. Or the internet is down between you and the DRM server. Or you don't currently have a internet connection. Or....

I'm kind of reminded of the good old cable company where if your cable goes out for 3 days or your only getting half the channels your paying for it's "please be patient we'll fix it as soon as we can" this after spending an hour plus on hold sometimes. And do they prorate so your only paying for the days you were able to use the service? Of course not.

If a company feels it needs to have some sort of draconian DRM scheme to protect their IP, which both Whitchers have disproved, it better be rock solid. If not you better be bending over backwards to quickly fix things and giving something in return, even if it's not a AAA high profile game. Because, as others have said, your only creating reasons for people to feel justified about pirating your software. If not the current game that doesn't work then every other game released using the same broken DRM system. Because most people are "once bitten twice shy". So side stepping the repressive DRM becomes the only way to get what you would of gladly paid for, if you could count on being able to play, then so be it.

 

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jimmythestu

And that's why I like The Witcher.  DRM free and then they brought out a patch so you don't have to have the disk in.  Now that I'll pay full price.  But those idiots don't get it.  But you know, there's probably someplace in the EULA that say's "you really don't own this game.  Your just paying for the privlige to play it..........or not"  Too stupid to live.  At least on Steam there's an offline mode although I've heard it's kind of hit or miss.

 

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Gezzer

Actually, you know what's funny?

The EULA says pretty much that. You don't own the software. Your paying for a license to use the software that can be rescinded at any time. The only guarantee is for the quality of the media it comes on. Which means what if it's a downloaded game? So even if software doesn't work according to the EULA your SOL unless they decide to help you. Most often a company will because it's in their best interests to keep a customer in good faith. But say if Windows 8 comes out or MS releases a service pack, even if you bought a game a month before the publisher has no oblication to make it compatible with the current version of windows.

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Supall

I was actually reading the Battlefield 3 Warranty last night (I bought the DVD because I don't believe in Downloading 12GB Games), and it said that there was a 90-day warranty on the DVD and that digital downloads are not included.  Its a shame that the gaming industry most of us grew up in has become filled with mistrust and allegations of greed.  Besides, you can bet that Pirates get the last laugh since they only truly miss out on the extras of the game, rather than the actual game itself.

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bloodgain

Yeah, the pirates are missing out on all the extras -- at least, that's what they want the publishers to believe.

Pirates have cracked Steam online play, for Pete's sake. Cracking a little bonus content is a walk in the park. If the game supports it, one of the cracker groups will figure out how to make it work.

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acidic

speaking of greed, all those "pre order exclusives" that you get, eventually go for sale for everyone. too many kids whine and cry because billy has a skin he doesnt. look at gears of war 3, you can buy the skins pack for $45. i only payed $20 for the game by the time i got my $20 gift card from walmart and sold my "exclusive" skin for another $20

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nsvander

This is exactly why consoles are taking over the market.  I gave up on PC gaming years ago because of all the hoops I had to jump through to play the games that I wanted.  I just play on my x-box now, because the games work, just put them in the console and play.  I dont have to worry about not being connected to the internet, or that someone bought the game and returned it just so they had a valid product key etc.  Hey game developers, this is why you are failing to make any ground on the PC gaming market!!!

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kixofmyg0t

Exactly. It's less of a pain in the ass to play on console period. 

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Danthrax66

Just torrent it

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stradric

That only makes things worse.  If you pirate, it justifes the DRM.  It's better to actually have some integrity and just to avoid the game altogether.

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Mortal_M

Since we are talking about EA, they are having problems with Origin too, new players can't register they copy of BF3 to Origin (or something like that) and they can't play.

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Obsidian

This was one of the deciding factors for why I didn't buy Dark Spore. It's rare that I get such concrete vindication of my perception.

I don't really mind DRM that makes sense, checking once a month or so, or once a week even. Always-on DRM isn't really needed for much but an MMO, and then it's really moot since you need to be connected to play.

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I Jedi

I guess Darkspore fans can have an occupy E.A. gathering. Right, right?

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stradric

It'd be a sad state of affairs if people got out in the streets to protest game DRM, but didn't join with the actual protesters protesting top-heavy economic policies.

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I Jedi

True, true, but if I remember correctly, there were protestors outside of Valve's building protesting the next HL game not yet being released. Gabe Newell, on that same day, announced CS: GO.

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stradric

Haha, yes, I remember that.  There were 2 guys and someone called the cops.  The cop that showed up was a Half Life fan and basically joined with them.  Then Valve invited the protesters up to the studio and gave them a tour, then pizza.

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Conal_keaney

I would be so pissed if this were to happen to me. I admit the DRM sucks, but if you paid for game and you can't use it, seems to me you paid for something not finished. I always feel EA has a knack of rushing their developers despite if the release will have bugs. 

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Dartht33bagger

DRM is getting really old.  We need to get rid of it.

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Holly Golightly

Yessss!!! What the hell were these guys thinking? Fact is, Always On DRM should have never existed. See why it is bad to require online connectivity to play a game? I was right all along!!! The game must be DRM-free to makeup for the damages done.

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