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Assault on Dark Athena DRM Backlash

The Starbreeze Forums and Atari Forums for The Chronicles of Riddick: Assault on Dark Athena each have threads complaining about the game's DRM, describing a non-revocable three-installation limit that does not allow further installations after it has been reached. This has inspired another protest centered on the reviews on the Amazon listing for the game, where an increasing number of reviews complain about the DRM. We contacted Atari about this and received the following response:

The protection on the PC version of The Chronicles of Riddick: Assault on Dark Athena is an activation system with online authentication required the first time you install the game on a machine. The activation code lets you install the game on up to 3 machines, with an unlimited number of installs on each assuming that you donít change any major hardware in your PC or re-install your operating system.

If you reach the maximum number of installations you can contact the Atari hotline and if itís a legitimate request you can get a new activation code.

We implement this protection in an effort to avoid early piracy.

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98. Re: On Dark Athena DRM Apr 11, 2009, 00:50 Jerykk
There is certainly a morality within capitalism, and the fact that some people go againt that is no reason to do it yourself.

The reason to do it is because the system itself does it. Capitalism is all about self-interest. Profit at all costs, even if it hurts others. There is no altruism in capitalism. The greater good is whatever makes you the most money. In the case of customers, it's all about saving money. Publishers like Atari have no problem using worthless DRM to burden customers so why should customers give them anything? If Atari wants to make money, they need to give customers a good reason to buy their games. Preventing theft != making money. In the case of DRM, theft isn't prevented, money isn't made and customers aren't happy.

You can uphold your own morality and refuse to pirate a game with ridiculous DRM but that choice really has nothing to do with capitalism.

I simply said for ME, personally, supporting the developers and the PC as a platform is more important than boycotting DRM I can get around anyway.

The PC as a platform does not benefit from DRM. The PC already has plenty of hurdles to overcome and DRM simply adds another one to the list. In the short term, yes, you are supporting the developer. However, you are also supporting the publisher who continues to use DRM. In order to grow, the PC platform needs to remove obstacles to mainstream acceptance.

All I ever said about Iron Lore was that piracy hurt their sales on some level, that level probably able to be debated, but more importantly it probably impacted their closing up shop on a psychological level.

I don't think their psychological level really mattered at that point. They didn't have enough money to keep going and they couldn't sign any projects with publishers. Even if Titan Quest wasn't pirated at all, this wouldn't have changed.

Begging them to please pay for my product is asinine and shouldn't need to be done.

You don't need to beg, you just need to make a product that people want to buy. That's how capitalism works. This isn't about charity. People stealing your stuff doesn't mean anything. People will steal anything if they can get away with it. However, if you make a quality product, a lot of people will feel compelled to buy it. DRM does not compel people to buy stuff.
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