RF Generation.  The Classic and Modern Gaming Databases.RF Generation.  The Classic and Modern Gaming Databases.

Posted on Sep 14th 2008 at 12:28:14 AM by (TraderJake)
Posted under OH NOOOO!, Modern Gaming, Spore, EA, SecuROM, God Hates Righteous People

Oh dear, it appears as though EA doesn't realize that people really, really hate intrusive Digital Rights Management, which you might begrudgingly know as DRM. Some places do DRM right, like Valve. Sure only one user can have a game, but at least that user can install the game as many times as he wishes. Apparently, EA just wants to piss you off if you buy Spore. Never mind enjoying the game, let's find a way to punish you for being on of the righteous buyers of Spore. How does EA do that? By using SecuROM, of course. As stated on everyone's favorite encyclopedia, Wikipedia, "SecuROM is a CD/DVD copy protection product, most often used for computer games running under Microsoft Windows, developed by Sony DADC. SecuROM aims to resist home media duplication devices, professional duplicators, and reverse engineering attempts. The newest versions (v4 and up) prevent 1:1 CD-R copies from being made. Certain programs can circumvent its protection. The use of SecuROM is controversial because certain aspects of the protection are similar to functions of malware, and users are not always informed when SecuROM is included with a product."

So, what aspects of SecuROM make it hated? Well, SecuROM phones home. You want to install that game on your PC? Well, go ahead, you have three installs on three PCs. But here is the thing. Let's say you install on your desktop, and then it goes into an incessant Blue Screen of Death and you have to reformat? Well, you reformatted, so that PC is no longer authorized to play the game. So, there goes a second authorization. After three installs on "different" PCs, you're done with playing the game. Gone are the days where you could reinstall as many times as you want, and here are the days where you're stuck with what the publisher gives you.

Spore, happens to have SecuROM, the lovely piece of software that phones home whenever an update is done or whenever the game is installed. A lot of people don't like that, so much so that on Amazon the customer rating sits at 1 out of 5 stars with 2216 reviews and growing. Turns out people really, really, really hate the DRM known as SecuROM, and they've shown their ire through the Amazon rating system. As one such reviewer says, "First of all, the game incorporates a draconian DRM system that requires you to activate over the internet, and limits you to a grand total of 3 activations. If you reach that limit, then you'll have to call EA in order to add one extra activation. That's not as simple as it sounds, since when you reach that point EA will assume that you, the paying customer, are a filthy pirating thief." Doesn't that sound wonderful?

It gets interesting though. A few days ago, Amazon pulled the Spore reviews. A few hours later, they were back, and their absence was attributed to "a site glitch". You know, I can claim that monkey's fly out of my ass, but that does not make it true. I bet their statement on it being a site glitch is a dirty, malicious lie.

It's really a shame that EA had to sully Will Wright's game with DRM. It's even more sad that EA doesn't trust you as a paying customer, and thinks you are obviously a dirty, filthy pirate. Perhaps people would have not had this backlash if only EA trusted them to be righteous consumers. But no, look where we are today. Spore has a 1 out of 5 star rating on Amazon, and people are pissed. Here's to you, EA.

Ed Note: I just noticed that over the last month that "Oh Noooo Otter" was the number 3 referral for our site, just behind the keyword RF Generation. Isn't that fun?


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               
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