Gaming Not-Roundup: Is Pirating Spore the Right Thing to Do?



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What we need is a website that lets the consumer know what games have DRM that any sort of boycott could be done strategically and efficiently.



Anyone know of such a website? *goes to google now*.



I think that the best course of action here is TO pirate the game.  If we were all to buy this game, EA would say, "Oh!  Looks like our DRM worked.  Let's plaster more in there."  F**K THAT!

I'm all for pirating this game.  This is a battle between us gamers, and corporations like EA, who think that DRM is the solution.  FYI, it's a pretty cool game.



Companies put DRM on their software because people will still buy it anyways. Hell, even the major piraters still get the software originally so their group has something to work with. Support those companies that actually do make it easy to use your software. What was so bad about just having a serial number and that's it? Sure, there will always be games getting pirated, but good will with paying customers is MUCH more valuable than making life harder for everyone. Thanks to software piraters, it's not hard to get a hacked copy of software that's just as easy to use as the legit version, and it installs faster thanks to being an ISO. Hell, I have hacked versions of software I did go out and buy just because I can install it faster and it has no DRM. 

    What's going to change things is when people really do get behind companies that make DRM free software. For instance, look at Sins of  Solar Empire is completely DRM free. You punch in the serial number, it lets you install and play, and doesn't put a shred of DRM on your computer. Just like some people will want to pirate to make a point, there are people that will buy the software to make a point. Knowing it was completely unfettered with any kind of protection, I could have downloaded it and had it running no problem, as it is, I went out and got it, and absolutely love it. Support companies that do it right, and don't give your money to companies that encumber your PC



Just like looting a rioting get people nowhere, illegally downloading the game via torrents and using cracks will only result in even stronger DRM's.

 Don't take the low road and steal the game. I think EA has got the message loud and clear. Let them get some time to correct the issue and respond with a solution.

 Protest with your money and don't buy it till the issue is resolved in a way that's fair for everyone.





To bad about the DRM thing, that's disheartning to hear because I've always enjoyed those Maxis games. I remember even playing Sim City 2000 in my sleep hehe.

Just buy the game, give credit where credit is due, but don't install it.

Next, download the pirated copy and avoid the DRM. Win Win.



 I might actually care more about this if I was interested in the "game".  It looked retarded to begin with and from what I've heard it is.  Media sources like MPC that have been hyping this "game" just because it's made by Will Wright are partly to blame, but most of the blame falls on the shoulders of the idiots who bought into this.

 The game isn't original.  Creature creation games have been around for years and most of those actually offered some form of gameplay.  Go play E.V.O for the SNES.  The creature creation is better than Spore and the changes actually effect your creature and how he functions in combat.

 Spore is a lot like iProducts and Halo 2&3. The are all shitty but idiots keep buying them because other idiots bought them.  It's a snowball effect of stupidity.



No matter what happens, EA will blame piracy anyway, just like everybody else does.  So, if we're going to be called pirates and subject to ever-more-draconian DRM anyway, why not pirate?  It's obviously what they want us to do.

And making Spore the most pirated game ever would have one effect -- it would demonstrate, once and for all, that DRM does not accomplish its stated goals.

I'm not saying I'm going to do it (my enthusiasm for Spore has dampened rather greatly because of this whole controversy), but I can see the reasoning.



So the pirates now believe they are the cure to the problem they created.  You know, it’s true what they say:  99% of all criminals really are morons.

I am encourage that the general attitude in this forum agrees that stealing Spore is not the solution and that DRM is only going to make matters worst.

I agree: EA and all the other companies are taking a path toward self destruction with their solution.  They really should take a look at the music industry to figure out the right thing to do.  As you recalled, the more the music industry imposed DRM on everyone, the more people pirated.  Amazon got it right:  price the music fairly with no DRM and there will be no reason to pirate.

And lets not forget that DRM is expensive, not just to EA but to you and I – the PC Gamers of the World.  I can’t sell, trade, or even give away my copy of a game after I am done with it.  Our console brothers can, which makes things a little more affordable (even after you factor in the additional $10 licencing surcharge they have to pony up) and give them the option to buy the game used for a little bit less money.

This is something I hope they add to Steam – the ability for me to transfer my ownership of a game on Steam to someone else either for money or charity.  Steam already allows you to install the game as many times as you want on as many computers as you want, trumping EA’s DRM scheme.  This last piece may abolish the use of DRM for good. And then the pirates will have to find some other “worthy cause” to give meaning to their pointless existance.



I bought the game on day 1 and the DRM is not that bad...  It's not ideal, but I installed on three different PC's with no problem.  Just out of curiousity, I reinstalled on the same PC once before the third PC, no problem. Supposedly, after some time has passed (ten days, one month, whatever), i will be able to install on three more PC's with the same key. I also can play the game without the CD in the drive, without using a sometimes unstable and probably illegal no-cd crack; that's a big plus in my book.

It is annoying that they only allow one online account per cd key but three pc's, it kind of ruins the family gaming/share online aspect of the game, but thats not really a DRM thing.

 The most frustrating thing is that DRM is money completely wasted.   I don't see how big game publishers don't see that.  A crack is availble for every major release on day one.  There are certainly problems with DRM for legit consumers, especially when they install garbage like StarForce or don't work with some optical drives like some SecuRom.   DRM doesn't do anything but hurt legit consumers.  Theives will steal copy and crack the game no matter what protection is on it.



With the advent of peer networking, "pirating" suddenly became a
serious threat to the movie and record industry. The software industry
had been trying to deal with it since its inception (because software
has always been digital, and thus easy to make perfect duplicates). So
when Napster first showed up, there was a violent reaction from these
two other until-then-analog industries. As we have seen over the last
few years, their reaction has flopped. For all their tough talk, they
have slowly, but steadily retreated from there earlier take-no-prisoner
mentality. Now we have a realistic and fair model emerging, with (for
example) songs being sold online, for between 50 cents and a dollar
each, with no DRM attached.

While things haven't progressed quite
as far with the movie industry, it is clear that the only industry that
still has serious blinders on their eyes is the software industry. They
need to realize that the more they try to resist, restrict and squeeze,
the more thier users are compelled to "fight back." This latest issue
with Spore is a perfect example. Recent history has show us that while
it might take decades, eventually, the consumers can "brute force"
positive change, though the use of piracy. While there will always be
pirates who do so simply to get something for nothing, the sooner the
software industry decides to compromise, and find a middle ground, the
sooner they can increase their profits, and reduce the piracy problem
to a minor nusence.


Keith E. Whisman

I think I can send the a better and more well understood message to EA by not giving them my money and not playing their game.

I give bad press and not my money. They want my money. When it hurts them in the pocket book and nobody is playing the game then they will reevaluate their products.




Seems to me there is no voice of power for gamers. Sounds like we need a union. ;) Seriously though, a member mentions boycotting. And I agree. But how? The Amazon situation was really more by chance than anything. We need an organization (non-profit of course) that is controlled by the wishes of gamers. Basically, hundreds of thousands or even millions of gamers 'join' as members, and agree to follow a unified course in directing the gaming industry. Boycott a game... mass email a publisher... YouTube postings. And the organization could provide a guaranteed un-censored reviewing forum.

I'd be surprised if Maximum PC couldn't start the ball rolling on something like that.



It gives them more "ammunition" for the need to "secure" their products.

Stealing is stealing, no matter how you spin it.

While I hoped that the protest would have caused more of a response (and it's still early) and spread to other major retailers and review sites, I think this is one of the major ways to fight these methods.

Ultimately, the only real way to fight these corporations from punishing legit customers (which I still believe to be in much greater numbers than those that decide to pirate) is to boycott.  If people purchase a product and the corporation is making it's money...why does it need to change?  Yeah there is a lot of screaming in the backround...but they're still making money.



Stealing a game, under any circumstance, is certainly never right because you're taking away from the people who worked hard on the game to bring it to people like you; It's not their fault that EA decided that they would start putting DRM protection on their games.

I believe, though, that because of EA's actions in using DRM, only serves to slap their loyal customers in the face. Therefore, in light of this, I think that people, rather than steal the video game, should buy the video game, then use various tools and hacks to rip the DRM protections off this video game. That way, it becomes a more fair and balanced environment.

By stealing the video game and using hacks to rip off the DRM protection, you are just trading one evil for another evil, which isn't the right way to go at all.

Buy it legit, then screw over EA's DRM.



if they keep screwing us over i say we pirate they will get the point erybody says that piracy is the problem, i mean sure piracy started the problem but who says pricay cant fix it? if a well published company like this has well read users leaving comments about how much they are screwing us over how can they not see it? i say if they try to play the whole ignorance card i will lay it out for them:

1. lower prices

3.bugless games




Is the DRM being used like the sony rootkit ones of the past? Suing sony over it seemed to solve that drm problem imho-maybe the same will happen here?



Is pirating Spore the right thing to do? No. Stealing a game is never the right thing to do. The right thing to do is to protest with your wallet. You could buy and return as one user suggested, or just not buy it at all. Buy games that don't have DRM, or have DRM that you can live with. The only way EA and other DRM-loving publishers are going to stop their "Big Brother" tactics is if they see that they are losing a lot of money because of it. I haven't heard anything about sales numbers, but I get the impression that Spore is doing just fine at retail, that is the real reason EA won't change course.

As  far as piracy encouraging tighter DRM schemes, that seems to be true, but it shows a serious flaw in the logic. Nathan's analogy of the parent and the child with the cookies is innacurate. EA is not a parental figure. They are a shop owner offering a product. Piracy is going to happen. The combined abilities of the pirates ensure that. It will take them a lot less time to break your DRM than it will take you to come up with it. Instead of making it harder for legitimate customers to use your product, which in turn encourages some to steal it (which is still wrong but nonetheless happens) rather than pay you for it, make the product appealing enough that people want to pay you to make more. And if they do go the "Our game was stolen 46 billion times so we're
going to make the next one impossible to use" route, they will just be
shooting themselvesin the foot.

 I agree with the guy above who said that escalation just means everyone loses out. Unfortunate, stopping all of the pirates is not a realistic goal. That puts the decision in the hands of the publishers. Stardock seems to have gotten the message, why can't EA?

 By the way, I was going to buy Spore until I heard about the DRM. Now I am voting with my wallet.



*clap, clap, clap*

Jon Phillips, editorial director, Maximum PC



Straight up, tru dat.

You all had better get this boy a permanent seat at the table, before somebody else scoops him up. 



Heres a simple solution that i see it... they ether keep DRM and take out the user agreement so we can do whatever the hell we want with the game legaly, or they take out the majority of DRM and keep the user agreement and keep it illigal... ether way, i see that we win... more people would buy games if they did the latter, they could keep their bullshit if they did the first



At some point, someone is going to have to sue EA--or anyone else using stringent DRM.  Not because of 'rights' or 'fair use' or something else that can go either way in court, but because the DRM schemes used essentially load potentially hostile software onto my computer.  Software that I may not be able to fully remove, even if the game is uninstalled.

Since EA is unlikely to provide details on the DRM schemes used so that I can evaluate if I believe it to be harmless or not prior to installing it, and since it is unlikely that such software can be fully removed short of reformatting the hard drive... well, it's just a lawsuit waiting to happen.  Should we pirate it?  I say no, because I firmly believe such a thing to be unethical.  EA should most certainly be sued so that someone--whether the public or an impartial computer securities firm--can review the details?  Oh yes.  Very soon. 



 consumer rights, will should not have agreed to put his next batch of intellectual property in the grubby hands of EA, pirate the fucking game. Innovative, original, amazing, all words that could easily describe Spore, but chained down by some Bullshit EA slaps on because their idiots ruins any form of 'originality' the game once had. Will should know better and fully expect piracy after partnering with such a group.

 pirate the game.

"we Plan for Tomorrow, but we Live for Today"



Can you say 'escalation'? A previous poster was right, this only gives EA more ammo in 'fighting' piracy. I'm not much of a fan of DRM, but calling for the world to steal copies of Spore is just stupid. I can see this hurting the entire PC gaming market. It's getting close to scare tactics, and game companies just won't deal with it. God help us if people actually consider downloading the game because they feel... justified.

On another note, Crysis Warhead comes out this next week. From the early reviews I've seen it looks like Crytek has fixed everything gamers complained about AND lowered the price. It will be interesting to see if sales surpass the original. I would count that as proof that giving gamers a quality product at a good price is the best fight against piracy. Of course, some people are just cheap bastards. heh



DRM exists as a barrier to stealing the game.  Who leaves their car unlocked everyday?  Not very many people and those who do occasionally have someone take their crap.  But even if you lock your car there are still people out there who will get in and take your crap.  Its the same thing the difference is that with software a few really smart guys can figure out how to break into your car and then tell all their less talented friends how to do it.

 Somehow I'm off track here.  Stealing bad.  DRM required evil of the world.  Want to play on 2 machines at the same time buy 2 copies.



I work for a best buy and nobody give a crap why people return things.



Yes, but if everyone whos into PC gaming buys a copy of Spore --everytime they are in a store that sells it buying something else-- only to return it unopened the same day, or the next... either the stores or EA have to have a "WTF???" moment.

Even if it makes stores put in a restocking fee on all software, that's a milestone ---because we just stop buying Spore (and similar DRM games) at those stores.  ----Making the sales records for Spore just as messed up as they can possibly be.    That's the goal.

We want them to take a look at how it negatively impacts sales, instead of all the imaginary money software pirates are picking out of their pockets.  

(They must also buy Axe Cologne, expecting it to magnetically attract nubile women...)

If EA's DRM enabled games have 5-10 times the return rate of games sold in a similar period, even the worst ass-hats working there shouldn't be able to just ignore that statistic.  It'll be a real number somewhere, not "90% of all statistics can be made to say anything, 95% of the time..."

It'd be a pain, maybe more of a pain than the DRM itself, but less than dealing with a "pirate" Torrent version of Spore, built by EA with trojan designed to mess up your system if you install it...  (Something they could well decide to do.)

I'm already not playing/buying games that require Steam, and Crysis.  Not buying/playing Spore will be easy. 

Either put your money where your mouth is, or "kwit-yer-bitch'n..."  

I stand by my claim that stealing the game just makes EA feel fully justified in pulling this garbage on as many customers as possible. 

I guess you could start an agressive leaflet and email campaign if you really feel the need to gripe.  I just think complaining here for the 500th time is a waste.  (You don't buy Axe, do you??) 



Loss #1: We pirate the game in protest -- we prove EA's point that piracy is rampant.

Loss #2: We cease complaining and buy the game in its current form -- EA gets the impression that we'll stomach anything.

Loss#3: DRM only hinders legitimate customers since pirate copies come with cracks -- EA loses business, we lose future content

Upshot: Everybody loses.



Does anyone seriously agree w/this "deathkitten??"

Because I'd call that an award-winning level stupid idea.  That B.S. is why there's DRM to begin with.  You do this, and EA can say "47 Billion people stole Spore, the first day it was available..."

It doesn't matter that it's not true, and they know it.  They're justifiying their own brand of B.S.  

You know they want to rent you games, right???   Just like Symmantec & McAfee do with security programs... [my firewall hasn't had an update available for 5 months!]

If you want to register a real number they can't ignore: Go buy the game from a brick & mortar store ---then return it, unopened.  "Reason for return???  This buggy DRM crap they put on here.  I won't pay for this kind of  Spyware..."

Just stay away from re-stocking fees...




I agree that you shouldn't pirate.

I also agree that escalated piracy will only give them proof that their games need draconian measures to stop it.

That being said, I totally disagree with HOW they implement copy protection. I don't want root kits installed on my system, and I don't need my rig "calling home" every time I boot up the game.

I used to copy software alot. I've since seen the errors of my ways. I would rather purchase a game and receive all the benefits of purchase (updates, manuals, tech support, et.). But don't make the cost so prohibitive.

And for years, people have been copying Windows. Did that stop Bill Gates from selling billions of copies? Nope! Microsoft just made its copy protection that much harder.

Like I said... make the software worth a damn, and charge a REASONABLE price, and I'll buy it.

Semper Leporid!



best idea I've heard...  Buy it and return it.



Face it. The pirates who actually crack these games, build installers, and all the other stuff involved are pretty talented. They do it for the challenge, to stand up to the man, and probably just for bragging rights. What if there was no more DRM? Would pirate groups disband? Would they still want to be the first group to post a torrent of an iso? Because isos are all that would need to be uploaded. No more need for cracks. No more need to "virtually punch" publishers in the face. If publishers dropped drm completely and just put games out there the only people left pirating games are pure A*holes who are too cheap to go out and pay for content. There would be no excuse for piracy. No justification. Would it stop piracy? No. People download music and movies without drm. Without drm the crackers would have nothing to do. I can't imagine that piracy would increase. I don't imagine it can increase anymore than when you have the internet masses pirating just to spite people because "it is the right thing to do." Without DRM consumers might actually go out and buy more games. It may not happen right away. It may take a little while to build faith in publishers but eventually I think the pc might become the gaming platform it is meant to be. Stardocks gamer's bill of rights is a step in the right direction. I won't pretend that sites like the pirate bay weren't popular a year or two ago but I can only imagine press like this increases traffic greatly which is only bad for the gaming industry.



Um... no. 


Preferred boot, but will give this Maximum PC thing a try.

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