Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Copy Protection

I've done most of the code for Democracy 2's copy protection. The original game was a full install exe that when bought, you just installed and ran. In any sane world, that would be fine. But todays world is sadly not that idealistic .(I even had one scumbag of a customer buy the full copy of one of my games, then post the download link on a warez forum. This person didn't think they were identifiable, but in fact I have her home address and phone number. If I wished to do so, it's an open and shut case for prosecution.)

I don't live in a box, i know about warez, and I know when my games get posted.

Sadly, I need to do something to prevent the rampant casual piracy that is becoming the norm in pc gaming. The industry seems to have 3 solutions right now:

1) make MMO games exclusively.
2) ad-supported games which are free
3)on-line validation by a central server

I'm not about to do 1) and I hate 2), which leaves 3). So Democracy 2 will need to be validated on-line. It should be very quick, and very painless, and there's no spyware or rootkits or other nonsense. Just an on-line serial number check before you can run the game for the first time. And it-s a one-off thing.
This means that if you want a friend to buy the game, burn it to a disk for you, so you can play it on your machine that has no internet access, your fucked. Sorry, but that's the inevitable downside, and I suspect 99.99% of my customers have web access, as I am pretty much an on-line company. Don't buy the game if you want to play it on a machine that never has web access.
You will still be able to install it on multiple machines (but not dozens!), you can still backup the installer, you can still get the game again in 5 years time if your house gets blown up by terrorists etc etc.

I wish I didn't have to take time away from game development to do that crap, but as usual in life 1% of people are screwing it up for the other 99%. People who pirate games might as well wear a T shirt saying " I hope PC gaming dies", because the number one reason for that right now is people not buying the stuff,

Feel free to say what you think about all this.
BTW, the game is going well, only a few weeks still to go before final testing starts,

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home