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Do We Want Ubisoft To Support Linux?

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Followers of the penguin, witness with me the insolence that is Ubisoft's most recent tomfoolery. Speaking to GameSpot, Ubisoft VP of digital publishing Chris Early enlightens us with what many of us knew years ago, namely that any game will be cracked and made available online given enough time and effort. Here's the kicker! Developing games that people actually want to pay for fixes this! No way!

Ubisoft VP of digital publishing Chris EarlyWhat becomes key for us is making sure we're delivering an experience to paying players that is quality. I don't want us in a position where we're punishing a paying player for what a pirate can get around. Anything is going to be able to be pirated given enough time and enough effort to get in there. So the question becomes, what do we create as services, or as benefits, and the quality of the game, that will just have people want to pay for it?


Sounds reasonable, right? Well, as is logical, take one step forward, two steps back. As this visionary goes on, it is eventually revealed that the focus shouldn't merely be on developing better, more compelling games, rather, that Ubisoft's games should have more online services (which pirates do not have access to) built into them.

Ubisoft VP of digital publishing Chris EarlyI think it's much more important for us to focus on making a great game and delivering good services. The reality is, the more service there is in a game, pirates don't get that," Early said. "So when it's a good game and there's good services around it, you're incentivized to not pirate the game to get the full experience.


Ahhh, what Ubisoft really means is that current DRM is failing, so new DRM needs to be brought in to fix this. Got it. To my knowledge, Ubisoft does not yet have a presence on Linux, but with Windows gamers constantly getting shafted, do Linux gamers want such a company to join the fray? Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
Tags: DRM, Editorial
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FutureSuture 22 Jun, 2014
Quoting: MajorLunaC
Quoting: godlikeYes we want Ubisoft's support because they are making really good games. DRM no DRM who gives a fudge about this dispute? I just want to have a choice. And if someone doesn't like DRM he can always avoid clicking "buy"... that simple.
That's just it: They're denying choices. In Japan, they already have DRMs that only allow you to play a movie that you BUY (NOT RENT; BUY) only a set number of times on ONLY a single DVD/Blueray player before you can't play the disk anymore, in some cases even "self-destructing" (no boom, just it wont play). Games there have very similar DRMs (like only 1 computer/console). So if anything happens to the player (like X-Box, X-Box 360 often broke), you basically lose ALL your games instantly, no refund
Do you have a link to back all that up? I find this fairly frightening.
Nightmare Twilight 22 Jun, 2014
After a quick look through a list of Ubisoft's games, I could care less if Ubisoft came to Linux. There were no games that I care to own.
Hyeron 22 Jun, 2014
Quoting: FutureSuture
Quoting: MajorLunaC
Quoting: godlikeYes we want Ubisoft's support because they are making really good games. DRM no DRM who gives a fudge about this dispute? I just want to have a choice. And if someone doesn't like DRM he can always avoid clicking "buy"... that simple.
That's just it: They're denying choices. In Japan, they already have DRMs that only allow you to play a movie that you BUY (NOT RENT; BUY) only a set number of times on ONLY a single DVD/Blueray player before you can't play the disk anymore, in some cases even "self-destructing" (no boom, just it wont play). Games there have very similar DRMs (like only 1 computer/console). So if anything happens to the player (like X-Box, X-Box 360 often broke), you basically lose ALL your games instantly, no refund
Do you have a link to back all that up? I find this fairly frightening.
I think he may be talking about Flexplay.
Areso 23 Jun, 2014
As for me, I'm avoid UPlay as plague.
DRM - almost always is bad, 'cause anybody who want to download game for free, could do it. It's just against honest people.
Argh, I still have a few disk with Starforce... which I never could play again.
Beamboom 23 Jun, 2014
Can someone in a calm and rational tone explain to me why DRM is such a bad thing, seemingly by default? I see this hate all over the place - but what is it founded on? Isn't it *piracy* that is the real plague here?

Ever since I started earning my own money I've been paying for my games and never needed to work against the DRM applied to the games. And quite frankly, with Steam & co it's much, MUCH more comfortable today than it was back in the days when we had to insert the friggin' CD (or floppy or whatever physical media it was distributed on) into the machine to verify ownership in order to play the games.

My PC has ever since the late 90s been online for as long as it's turned on and so are yours, so that argument just doesn't hold water and hasn't done so for decades now.

So, why should I feel rage for Unbisoft trying to make life harder for those who steal their games? Why should I even care, as long as it doesn't add hassle for me (and no - they don't!)?

I for one welcome Ubisoft with open arms, cause they are behind quite a few of my favourite franchises.
MayeulC 23 Jun, 2014
Quoting: BeamboomCan someone in a calm and rational tone explain to me why DRM is such a bad thing, seemingly by default?
If you browse trough the comment pages on this topic, you will see that many people had some problems with Ubisoft's DRM.
The major problem with DRM is that they restrict the way you can play your games. That sounds good for anti-piracy reasons, but it often annoys more the person who purchased these games legally, than the ones who just downloaded a pirated copy.

Some example of intrusive DRMs :
  • Those which require the game CD to be in the CD tray. While less and less present these days with digital distribution, these protections are still annoying on aging CDs, which are more and more difficult to read. Moreover, if you loose your CD-Rom, you're screwed. It did happen to me.

  • Those which require a constant online connection. This is a way Ubisoft has taken way too much. If Internet is down, you can't play. If you're behind a firewall, you can't play. If you're traveling, you can't play. If the servers are down, you can't play. If the society disappears, you won't be able to play again. If it shuts down the (old) game servers, the same.

  • Those which require an online activation. Pretty much the same as above. This is annoying if you buy a CD, go in a place without Internet (yes, it still exists), or behind a firewall, only to discover you won't be able to play.

  • Those which restrict the number of installations. Often paired with those above. You can't install the game on, let's say, more than 3 computers. If you reinstall the OS on one of those computers, you have to reuse one install credit. If you have no one left, you are forced to either buy a new copy, or run trough lengthly customer support discussions. You also require a connection to the company's game servers.

  • Those which detect you have a pirated copy while you don't. Don't laugh, this really happens. And you don't know what the software is going to do to your computer after that...


Globally, the main problem with DRMs is they are not future-proof, and are really annoying for the legitimate user.
On the other hand, I am perfectly fine with "light" DRM providers like Steam, which adds a huge value to the game (achievements, community, workshop, sales, API for developers), while not making their DRM mandatory. Moreover, it is stated in the steam EULA (or it was. I do read EULAs, but not every update) that if ever the steam platform was being closed, they would do all their possible to allow the users to still use their games.

I may have omitted some DRM scemes, feel free to complete my post with those.
Hamish 23 Jun, 2014
I have had plenty of times where my internet was either unusable or was metered to such an extent I had to watch everything I did with it, and cut back accordingly. Privilege is saying that problems do not exist simply because they have never affected you yourself, which your argument is unfortunately full of Beamboom.

As for myself, if I buy a game I want to be able to install it on what machines I wish, have it be played it when I choose to have it be played, have a reasonable understanding of what the product is doing, and have some reasonable expectation that I can still play the game ten years for now. I expect nothing less when I put down money on a game or almost any other commercial product.

DRM threatens all of these things, all in an ineffective struggle to combat piracy, which, while harmful in its own ways, does actually in effect bolster those things which I considered to be desirable. Those games that require the CD you mentioned is an example of DRM, one which the pirate community helped solve even for legal game owners, such as myself, through No-CD solutions. These removed hassle and made the games more future ready. Which is something that game developers should be doing themselves.

This is not to whitewash piracy in its entirety of course; if you like a game or developer and have the means you should of course support them. But this does go a long way to explain why Ubisoft comes off as the bad guy here while the pirates themselves often come out looking like soldiers of light, and not for entirely undeserved reasons.
Beamboom 23 Jun, 2014
Thanks for the reply, guys.

Ok, first thing first: The requirement of having the game CD in the CD tray is annoying, as I too stated. That's why I prefer the online requirements instead.

The rest of your arguments reside around the problem with not being online/connected.

It should here be mentioned that I am a close to 100% Steam gamer. I got some freebie games that are hosted on Uplay (like Assassins Creed that I got with a graphics card) but I don't think I've paid for anything outside Steam.

So in effect I guess what I'm really arguing for here, is that Steam really is not such a bad service. And I've read many, many users claiming "Steam == DRM, never on my computer!" I just go, "why???".

Sure, it probably is at least a theoretical hassle to not be able to play on your laptop while being offline. But in real life, how often do that happen?
I just think people are far, far too harsh on this whole issue. Like I said, I've been a gamer for decades now and have not really in practise been annoyed by anything but the old "CD in tray" requirement.
Maquis196 23 Jun, 2014
Quoting: BeamboomThanks for the reply, guys.

Ok, first thing first: The requirement of having the game CD in the CD tray is annoying, as I too stated. That's why I prefer the online requirements instead.

The rest of your arguments reside around the problem with not being online/connected.

It should here be mentioned that I am a close to 100% Steam gamer. I got some freebie games that are hosted on Uplay (like Assassins Creed that I got with a graphics card) but I don't think I've paid for anything outside Steam.

So in effect I guess what I'm really arguing for here, is that Steam really is not such a bad service. And I've read many, many users claiming "Steam == DRM, never on my computer!" I just go, "why???".

Sure, it probably is at least a theoretical hassle to not be able to play on your laptop while being offline. But in real life, how often do that happen?
I just think people are far, far too harsh on this whole issue. Like I said, I've been a gamer for decades now and have not really in practise been annoyed by anything but the old "CD in tray" requirement.

There are many layers of drm and Steam is probably the least intrusive of the lot (a lot of stuff inside steam will run without steam running for instance), but not all DRM are equal and Ubisoft have a very draconian one in many peoples eyes. Sure it works for some and they won't complain because they get to play their game. As soon as you can't play your legally purchased game because of DRM, the system is broken.

Uplay does this. Origin does this. Not seen it happen in steam but thats probably due to the fact I dont play games that have some bullshit "online" requirement, especially when its forced on us.

Its a matter of choice at the end of the day, at least we have that.
Hamish 23 Jun, 2014
Well, looky here, my internet just stopped working for about half an hour before it finally came back. But really, how often does this happen?
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