Gaming My Way

07 Mar

Ubisoft Fails DRM

This morning, the authentication servers for Assassin’s Creed 2 went down. For those who don’t know, Assassin’s Creed 2 keeps a continuous connection to the servers in order to authenticate the game, and it will stop running when it can’t connect to the servers.  So, anyone who actually purchased a copy of the game can’t play it at all right now. See, this is why gamers complain about DRM, and talk about how it punishes legitimate customers.

According to the article linked above, the servers went down around 8 AM GMT this morning, and weren’t back up as of the time it was posted. For those who want to play their legally purchased copies of the game, they seem to be out of luck until at least tomorrow, as that’s when Ubisoft said they’ll be looking at the issue. If I had actually purchased this game, I’d be incredibly angry about this. Luckily, it’s not my problem.

So, for those gaming companies who insist this is necessary, are incidents like this enough? Since the DRM system is already cracked by pirates anyway, and it’s likely only a matter of a few days before  it’s specifically cracked for Assassin’s Creed 2? When are you going to stop punishing your actual customers for the actions of people who were never going to buy your game in the first place? I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, I will not buy or play any game that uses any inconvenient DRM technology. If you want my business, and that of countless other gamers, fix this. And by fix this, I mean stop using these DRM schemes. Though Ubisoft also owes it to their customers to get their servers back up as soon as possible, and they should have been working on them already. Of course, what they should really do is release a patch to remove this awful DRM scheme, then never speak of using it again.

To be clear, I do not condone piracy. However, the measures Ubisoft has taken while attempting to protect their game are, in the end, a spectacular failure of customer service, and I’m willing to bet in the next day or two they’ll be shown to be a technical failure as well due to some pirate group releasing a crack. Then, the pirates will be heralded as heroes for fixing the game and releasing it as it should have been released in the first place.

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