Epic & Cheaters

The Atari Forums (thanks HomeLAN Fed and Planet Unreal) has a post from Epic programmer DrSiN on their intentions of seriously pursuing cheaters and thieves of CD keys:
In addition to an improved version of the cheat-stopping measures found in UT2003, UT2004 utilizes a targeted tracking and response system at the master server level that allows us to focus on those people really causing problems. Yesterday we identified and permanently banned a UT2004 player, "Zellius", for cheating.

We have had reports of people trying to gain access to other paying customers' CD keys. Please use common sense. Don't send anyone screenshots or dumps of the registry entries showing your key. Don't download "hacks" because they may contain a CD key stealer, or worse.

No one from Epic, Digital Extremes, or Atari will ever approach you and ask for your CD key. You will only be asked for your unique ID in the Game tab of your settings menu.

CD key theft is a crime against a UT2004 customer. We will hand over any evidence of key theft to Atari's legal department for immediate action.
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40 Replies. 2 pages. Viewing page 1.
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40.
 
Re: No subject
Mar 21, 2004, 13:44
40.
Re: No subject Mar 21, 2004, 13:44
Mar 21, 2004, 13:44
 
A friend of mine doesn't even HAVE a CD/DVD drive in his shoebox computer. He plugs one in when he wants to install software, and then takes it back out. So what does he have to do? Well...since most companies use copy protection now...he is forced to download the no-cd cracks even after legitimately buying software.

forced has obviously changed its meaning since I was at school, back then it meant 'had no choice' as opposed to 'chose to do something'.

I did like the guy who couldn't wait the extra 20 seconds though - that's sweet.
Anvil - from the land of warm beer and mad cattle.
39.
 
Re: No-CD
Mar 21, 2004, 09:57
39.
Re: No-CD Mar 21, 2004, 09:57
Mar 21, 2004, 09:57
 
cheating pirates oO

38.
 
Re: No-CD
Mar 21, 2004, 07:05
38.
Re: No-CD Mar 21, 2004, 07:05
Mar 21, 2004, 07:05
 
Aye.

Ubisoft games tend to give me problems and, to this day, Will Rock is the only game that I cannot get to run in any way, shape, or form without a hack. After all the money I spend on gaming, I had to go out and download a no-CD crack just to play the game.

On a semi-related note, I have a DVD-R/RW which is effectively useless due to 75% of all software/games refusing to run or even install with it. I am all for protection, I do not mind jumping through a few hoops at first, but I think it is ridiculous when I am outright prevented from using software I have paid for.

Luckily, I normally have a few bits of hardware resting nearby (note my trusty 'ol DVD-ROM I have installed right now), but I feel bad for people with only one drive...

Not sure which is worse: cheaters or pirates,
Ray

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37.
 
Re: No-CD
Mar 21, 2004, 03:02
nin
37.
Re: No-CD Mar 21, 2004, 03:02
Mar 21, 2004, 03:02
nin
 
This is much better than the crap system ubisoft used for Raven Shield.
At a LAN with no internet access it would not let us play, because it could not contact the master server.

UBI seems to like to take a particular hard line when it comes to CP...

XIII springs to mind...

http://www.kmfdm.net/
36.
 
Re: No-CD
Mar 21, 2004, 02:18
36.
Re: No-CD Mar 21, 2004, 02:18
Mar 21, 2004, 02:18
 
on a tangent:
" If the auth server is down, anyone can play, which is better than nobody. "
This is much better than the crap system ubisoft used for Raven Shield.
At a LAN with no internet access it would not let us play, because it could not contact the master server.
That really pissed us off. Why buy the game when you have to go to crack sites and download hacks just so to let you play it?

35.
 
Re: No-CD
Mar 21, 2004, 01:47
35.
Re: No-CD Mar 21, 2004, 01:47
Mar 21, 2004, 01:47
 
Quite a lot of ignorant posts

The cheat protection has nothing to do with the cd checking, you can download a nocd crack and play without the cd.

The cd key printed on your manual generates a unique id number (UID) which corresponds to the relativaly small number of UID's in the auth server's database (around 10 million probably). If it's there and hasn't been banned, you're allowed to play. If it's not there, you can't play. If the auth server is down, anyone can play, which is better than nobody.

A key generator uses the same algorithm to create a key as UT2004 does to check one, and the game doesn't care wether it's on the auth server or not. People can download a key generator and play UT2004 offline or on unlisted servers that have auth disabled.

The amount of combinations that the algorithm can create is in the billions, and the chances of your generated key being the same as a key that was sold are slimmer than winning the jackpot on the lottery. It would take you months to generate a key that would work online if you were trying and checking 24/7.

'Hacking' the key checking process would involve hacking the auth server, something that's never been done and released to the public in any popular online game that uses an auth system.

To sum it up, the only way a cheater that got banned can play the game again is to go out and buy the game again. I'm sure there's a few people lame enough to do this more than once, but I can't see many people spending hundreds just so they can cheat online; and that's fine by me

34.
 
Re: No-CD
Mar 21, 2004, 00:20
34.
Re: No-CD Mar 21, 2004, 00:20
Mar 21, 2004, 00:20
 
Just curious about what everyone would think about this...

Clean exchange: instead of having to put in a CD to verify, require all customers of game X to register online (y'know, the option most games, even non-net games give you), and during the setup, the server patches the game to make it work correctly (instead of an auth code or something that can easily be forged). As an alternative, mind you. Just wanted to hear the reaction from those who vehemently oppose simple CD protection. Please note I don't necessarily oppose or support either, just an idea I had.


This comment was edited on Mar 21, 00:21.
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33.
 
No subject
Mar 20, 2004, 23:20
33.
No subject Mar 20, 2004, 23:20
Mar 20, 2004, 23:20
 
A friend of mine doesn't even HAVE a CD/DVD drive in his shoebox computer. He plugs one in when he wants to install software, and then takes it back out. So what does he have to do? Well...since most companies use copy protection now...he is forced to download the no-cd cracks even after legitimately buying software.

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32.
 
Re: Are you kidding?
Mar 20, 2004, 20:46
32.
Re: Are you kidding? Mar 20, 2004, 20:46
Mar 20, 2004, 20:46
 
Does anyone remember the fiasco with Morrowind's copy-protection? It caused the game to run 10-20% slower, depending on the system and drive people were using. To me, that alone is a good argument that copy-protection is a bad idea. To echo what Jedi said, I also have had hordes of problems with securom. I've even taken games back because they refused to work on my system, which really pisses me off (Halo and Vampire:Masquerade come to mind, not sure what method either of these use). I pay good money to play a game and it doesnt even work just because some jackass has ripped off a few games in the past. Copy-protection only hurts the paying customer, if someone really wants to copy a game, theyre going to find a way no matter what.

31.
 
Re: Are you kidding?
Mar 20, 2004, 20:10
31.
Re: Are you kidding? Mar 20, 2004, 20:10
Mar 20, 2004, 20:10
 
the biggest mystery is how those crappy cd protection companies ever convinced publishers to start using their garbage.
I think it must have involved bribes.

I wish I had thought of it first though. I mean your protection doesnt even have to really work, and then you can charge more for the new version of it.


The Sopranos have the market cornered on Protection rackets

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30.
 
Re: Are you kidding?
Mar 20, 2004, 17:58
30.
Re: Are you kidding? Mar 20, 2004, 17:58
Mar 20, 2004, 17:58
 
the biggest mystery is how those crappy cd protection companies ever convinced publishers to start using their garbage.
I think it must have involved bribes.

I wish I had thought of it first though. I mean your protection doesnt even have to really work, and then you can charge more for the new version of it.


29.
 
Re: Are you kidding?
Mar 20, 2004, 15:48
29.
Re: Are you kidding? Mar 20, 2004, 15:48
Mar 20, 2004, 15:48
 
Or, as in my case, Securom will NOT work with my only drive. So, after legally purchasing a full version, I had to go to gcw.com and get the noCD version, MUCH to my irritation.
How can they use this POS copy protection? MANY people like me have only one driver, a burner. Does that mean I'm going to copy games??

To be honest, I've NEVER copied a game CD. I HAVE DL'd and burned my own for a game I had no interest in buying (like Chrome or Empires: Dawn of the Modern World--neither of which have I played even though I got them months ago--proof of why I didn't buy them), but owning a burner has no bearing on the games I've bought--I'm not wasting my bandwidth and time uploading 650MB/CD at 384kbps!!

So, burners have trouble with their CP schemes and they don't care...so FUCK THEM.


The Jedi Master

28.
 
Are you kidding?
Mar 20, 2004, 14:17
28.
Are you kidding? Mar 20, 2004, 14:17
Mar 20, 2004, 14:17
 
there's nothing more annoying than fecking cd checks.

Opening drive, inserting disc, closing drive, waiting for pc to acknowledge, takes about 10 seconds. Cd check, including spinup, when starting game adds another 5-7 seconds.

This does not include the annoying sounds or finding the disc.

When I want a "quick" game, I want to be in the server browser within 10 seconds, not 30.

This comment was edited on Mar 20, 14:17.
27.
 
CoD for one...
Mar 20, 2004, 11:33
27.
CoD for one... Mar 20, 2004, 11:33
Mar 20, 2004, 11:33
 
CoD doesn't require CD check for multiplayer. Which is good for jumpin' on the computer for a few minutes of stress relief without farting around with the cd drive. But it isn't really a problem for me because I usually only have one or two games on my comp at anyone time. But I can see checking being a nuisance for some of you guys who have a ton of games installed and like to jump from one to the other.

What's the point of CD checking? Back in the day when a 2x cd burner cost twelve hundred dollars and broadband was but a gleem in your Daddy's eye this may have been a credible deterrent but really folks... If you're going to be a thieving low-life bastard you simply copy a friends game or you warez an ISO! Is there anyone here on this forum who can not do one of these two things if they wanted to? How does this defeat piracy from a cd check stand point? This is where some of you people fail to grasp the importance of a CD key against the futility of CD checking. If you've got the game, you got the game!

But come to think of it, they should keep CD checking. While launching from a third party browser and your drive is spinning up, cd check is being done, your spot well already be taken on that ever so popular, hard to get on, favourite server by some other guy who is using NOcd.exe. Even the smallest advantage is still an advantage!

This comment was edited on Mar 20, 11:51.
26.
 
Re: Partly Epic's fault for using a cd c
Mar 20, 2004, 10:49
26.
Re: Partly Epic's fault for using a cd c Mar 20, 2004, 10:49
Mar 20, 2004, 10:49
 
lol, its more like lazyness. Everytime I want to play a game I think of the search of the CD, putting it in the drive and wait for that damn long spin up (and the awfully loud noise). when I thought about that I never frequently played any game that needed the CD in the drive. now Im using cd cracks and play much more different games not just one or 2. either they put everything on the HD and you dont need any CD in the drive or they put everything on an CD/DVD so you wont have to install it. either way is good but BOTH? sorry, simply sucks and is illogical. if someone wants to copy a game he will suceed. no CD protection will change that.

I have given up on waiting for BIS to come back to their senses and do a real ArmA 2 successor.
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25.
 
Re: a utopian vision
Mar 20, 2004, 10:45
25.
Re: a utopian vision Mar 20, 2004, 10:45
Mar 20, 2004, 10:45
 
We have that, it's called Counterstrike.
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24.
 
Re: Partly Epic's fault for using a cd c
Mar 20, 2004, 10:37
24.
Re: Partly Epic's fault for using a cd c Mar 20, 2004, 10:37
Mar 20, 2004, 10:37
 
"Guess I Wont be buying 2004 then.. any game that requires cd in drive to play wont be BOUGHT here..."

Awwwwwww, you poor little baby. Is that cd too heavy for you to lift into the tway??? Morons come up with the lamest excuses to advocate piracy.


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-Tony!!!;)
my 360 user name is Robo Pop
23.
 
Re: Partly Epic's fault for using a cd c
Mar 20, 2004, 10:19
23.
Re: Partly Epic's fault for using a cd c Mar 20, 2004, 10:19
Mar 20, 2004, 10:19
 
Guess I Wont be buying 2004 then.. any game that requires cd in drive to play wont be BOUGHT here...


Guess you won't be buying any games then. I don't know of any recent games that don't require the CD to be in the drive.

Of course, the catch with UT2004 is that you only need the CD in the drive to start the game (as far as I can tell). So you don't have to keep it in the whole time.

Aditionally, the drive doesn't spin the whole time the CD is in the drive. It checks it once at startup and then eventually it spins down completely and you never hear it again while running the game.

This comment was edited on Mar 20, 10:21.
22.
 
a utopian vision
Mar 20, 2004, 10:14
f13
22.
a utopian vision Mar 20, 2004, 10:14
Mar 20, 2004, 10:14
f13
 
there should be multiplayer game with no restrictions and everyone was free to create and use cheats. that would be a great social experiment!

21.
 
Re: Partly Epic's fault for using a cd c
Mar 20, 2004, 10:14
21.
Re: Partly Epic's fault for using a cd c Mar 20, 2004, 10:14
Mar 20, 2004, 10:14
 
I'm really struggling hard here, but I just can't see the problem with having a cd in the drive to play.

Personally I dont need the extra wear and tear on my CD drive. I dont need it spinning when it doesnt have to and I dont want to have to open and close the door more than I have to just to switch games; my PC isnt an Atari.

I also dont want the extra wear and tear on my CD/DVD. Incidently, according to the LAW I am legally entitled to a backup copy of any media in my possession that was obtained legally, at least here in the US.

Copy protection schemes do NOT work, all they do is cause problems for the honest gamer. Remember the 4.036 (I think) patch for UT? Remember how it removed all CD checks? Wasnt that because their CD checking was causing too many problems? So why didn't Epic remember?
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