We’ve almost completely given up discussing Ubisoft DRM here at Maximum PC, and with good reason. Just about every PC release seems to ship with some draconian and insanely punishing copy protection mechanism designed to drive paying customers insane. Anno 2070 was no different, releasing with an activation system that limited you to a total of 3 lifetime activations, ohh and upgrading your video card, as discovered by Guru3D, counts against this total.
You make a finite amount of money. Typically, that money gets spent on essentials, like paying the rent, your bills and procuring fine single malt scotches. With so many needs to attend to, by the end of the month, most folks find themselves with precious little scratch left over to spend on their wants, meaning that decisions and sacrifices will have to be made. Will you be going out to dinner or seeing a movie? Socking away a bit of coin for a rainy day or for a vacation? Buying software or… not? After all, why buy when you can pirate everything most of today’s popular titles for the low, low cost of free? Well, we’ll tell you. Before you decide to go torrent an application or game you’ve been keen on, consider our 10 practical arguments against piracy, and always try to remember — you get what you pay for.
Ubisoft hates it when pirates plunder the company’s gaming wares online. They’ve been at the forefront of the DRM battle, and by that, we mean they’ve been forcing DRM-ridden content down PC gamers’ throats left and right. It gets worse: Ubisoft won't even be publishing its upcoming “I Am Alive” on the PC due to piracy concerns. Disappointed PC players have been vocal in their displeasure, but all the “bitching” doesn't change the facts, creative director Stanislas Mettra says.
Team Rainbow's done seeing the sights (and then blowing them up) in Vegas. Now they're headed to... well, we don't really know. But the red, white, blue, and morally gray “True Patriot” terrorists have their sights set on a much bigger target: the entire free world. OK, not really. We've just always wanted to say that. They are gunning to bring down the whole American government, though. So that's kind of a big deal.
Wait, what? Did we really just write that headline? No, that can't be. But it is! It only took the dismayed cries and raised pitchforks of every PC gamer on earth, but Ubisoft has finally heard our plight. In a scant couple of weeks, From Dust's supposedly non-existent DRM will be given the “ashes to ashes, dust to dust” treatment. So then, this is it, right? The beginning of a new era, with Ubisoft and our beloved platform leading the charge hand-in-hand? Er, not quite.
At this point, it's no longer a matter of whether or not the metaphorical car will end up in a horrible twisted flaming wreck. That's been plainly obvious for months. Now it's a matter of how. And, hoo boy, things are going downhill fast. First, From Dust's PC port suffered a month-long delay shortly before a trouble-free console release. But then Ubisoft promised a reprieve from its “always on” DRM nonsense, so at least that was something. And the painfully predictable twist? The DRM does require an Internet connection, the port's in terrible shape, and our tolerance of Ubisoft's apparent disdain for PC gamers has been dead all along.
PC gamers the world over face-palmed hard enough to create a seismic event when they heard that Ubisoft was planning to seriously cool Driver: San Francisco's engine with a heaping dose of its reviled “always on” DRM. There was anger, which led to hate, which... well, we wouldn't be surprised if a few new dark Jedi were born of this whole incident. Ubisoft, though, claims to have finally heard our plight. But has it? Has it really?
Well now, this is unfortunate. After Ubisoft's despicable “always on” DRM made its not-so-triumphant return in Driver: San Francisco, the world's entire supply of vaguely sensible people was forced to ask: “Why?” Why keep forcing such an obviously reviled substance down PC gamers' throats? Why turn a deaf ear when gamers are having children for the sole purpose of teaching them to curse your name? Well, because it works, apparently.
Supply and demand. Our faithful old economic system lives and dies by it, and Ubisoft's series about living and dying (mostly the second thing) is carrying on accordingly. If you're hoping to take a nice murder vacation through some exotic new locale, however, know this: Ezio's back for one last stab at greatness (and, you know, stabbing); Assassin's Creed III this ain't.
Being an assassin requires watching, waiting, and heaping gobs of patience. So, by that logic, Ubisoft seems to have assumed that PC gamers are the greatest assassins of all, seeing as we've been standing out in the cold since November. But now – finally – we'll soon be able to vent our frustrations in the healthiest way we know how: relentless stabbing.