StarForce Challenge

Destroy your PC and receive $1000 from StarForce (thanks Andrew) is an offer from the copy-protection maker in an effort to combat what they feel may be unfounded rumors about their software:
There have been a lot of rumors in the Internet concerning DVD/CD writers malfunction after installation and star-up of StarForce protected applications. Some have even mentioned that should such “malfunctioning” drive be placed in any other PC without StarForce protection installed it will fail to work as well.
...
After the installation and start-up of StarForce protected product the problem with (CD/DVD read-write malfunction) must exist and be reproduced in any other configuration.
If you can be the first to reproduce this situation in our office, we will be happy to award you with $1000.00 US, cover your trip to Moscow and pay 2 days’ lodging.
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45.
 
Re: No subject
Dec 15, 2005, 14:21
45.
Re: No subject Dec 15, 2005, 14:21
Dec 15, 2005, 14:21
 
Pay for your games or have the decency and shame to just keep your mouth shut.

I have paid for several games that simply don't work. I have lost a lot of money on games like that over the years, and I will not be burned again.

We have a software market in which 80% of games are crap and depend on quick sales in the initial two-week release period to garner the lion's share of the profit from a particular release. Therefore we see a lot of advertising hype from publishers to try to squeeze as many sales out of that short timespan as possible. I don't think I'm alone in saying that I have bought many legit games over the years that were flat-out missing features or functionality that was hyped in ads or advertised on the box, or that simply didn't work at all without a patch or No-CD crack.

We also have a software market that does not permit the return of opened software. An unfortunate circumstance due to a few pirates ruining it for everyone else, but a circumstance nonetheless.

So as a consumer, I have no way of testing a game to see if I like it or if it is going to cause a problem for my system until I pay money for it that I can never get back. The industry has set up a system in which all of the risk of purchase is put on the consumer. Didn't like the game? It screwed up your OS? The game tells you you don't have your store-bought disc in the drive when you clearly do? Copy protection messing with underlying functionality of your computer? Tough shit. Figure it out yourself. That's the attitude you get from publishers that assume you are a pirate until you prove otherwise.

Due to the above circumstances I find it no surprise that many are taking the path of pirating a game first to see if they like it and it works with their system. The end user is simply reclaiming their ability to thoroughly analyze the software before making a decision to purchase it. Sure there are a lot of people who will download a game and never think about paying for it, but they never would have anyway regardless of Starforce or not. If they couldn't get their pirated copy to work they'd simply move on to something else. The developer would never see any money either way.

Reviews? Their worth is debatable. They are no more than someone's opinion of the game, and I have frequently disagreed with established reviews. (Still can't believe I wasted $50 on that piece of shit game Manhunt, thanks Gamespot.) Demos? For the most part, they are designed to take the most exciting aspects of the game and play them up, giving you a skewed view of the actual finished product. And besides, who wouldn't love to have Starforce installed on their computer just to try out a demo of a game!

The bottom line is that developers and publishers want to make absolutely sure they have complete control over my purchase from start to finish, and have rigged the rules of the game to the point where the consumer is the only one that loses if the software does not work as advertised or is not what was promised.

The problem is, they no longer have exclusive control of the distribution process, so it is no longer a choice that is strictly theirs to make. I pirate games so I can have the freedom to decide whether or not to make a purchase. I buy the games I like because let's face it, no one works for free and the only direct method you have of telling developers what you want is by buying their product. The last game I bought was The Warriors for the Xbox (which is fucking awesome, and anyone who even remotely likes games about fighting should buy it). Among people who download or copy games, are people like me in the majority, or are most just dirty pirates? Who knows. But it's irrelevant, because the honest consumers like myself are the ones who put money in developers' pockets, not the idiots that have no interest in ever giving them their money anyway.

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