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Stardock's DRM Plans

Edge Online has word on plans to create a new Digital Rights Management solution from Stardock, a developer/publisher vocally opposed to DRM in the past. While Stardock prez Brad Wardell maintains they do not plan on adding DRM to their own games, other publishers have challenged them to help make DRM more acceptable to consumers: "So the publishers are telling us, 'Put your money where your mouth is. Why don't you guys develop something that you think is suitable that would protect our IP, but would be more acceptable to users?' We're investigating what would make users happy to protect their needs, but also provide some security for the publishers. ... We're actually developing a technology that would do that." They are exploring ways to make it possible to reinstall a game after losing the physical media, and are soliciting ideas from users about what will and won't be acceptable from their points of view.

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48. Re: Stardock's DRM Plans Oct 25, 2008, 14:53 Aero
If publishers are going to insist on online activation, I would prefer to see a system similar to that in Live For Speed.

--It doesn't install any drivers.

--You have a maximum of three activations at any one time, but you get one more added at the end of every week (therefore you have two extras). So if you use one of your extras, it will be replaced on Friday morning. You are however limited to having it installed on two computers at any one time, with one activation to spare.

--Your installation is tied to an account on their server, you can download the game anytime you want (it's a demo version until you unlock it).

IMO, this is an okay system. LFS is pretty much an online game though, so for a single player game they would probably have to limit you to downloading the software using your login on their server. There are cracks out there for it, of course, so they probably wouldn't want to pay for bandwidth to allow pirates to download it.

Of course I'd prefer no DRM. All DRM should do is try to prevent you from lending your disk to all your friends for them to install it. This seems like a reasonable use to me, it would keep the non-technically adept from pirating it, and that's about the best you can do. Online activation is good for that, better than a CD key. I'm not opposed to online activation in general, just the way SecurRom does it. Do it the way LFS does, and I don't mind so much.


Oh also, I don't really mind Steam at all. That's a decent system enough system.

This comment was edited on Oct 25, 2008, 15:15.
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