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Spore DRM - Spore DRM Could Kill PC Gaming
Abstract£ºHow could Spore DRM kill PC gaming? Spore DRM allows customers to use it on three machines. This is nothing more than an inconvenience.
Spore DRM Could Kill PC Gaming
If we can learn anything from the troubled launch of Spore, a videogame many people have been looking forward to for years, it is that binding products with digital rights management (DRM) restrictions hurts more than it helps. Spore, designed by Sims creator Will Wright, went on sale in September, 2008. It is expected to sell 2 million copies in September alone, and is currently the No. 3 best-selling game on Amazon.
But it also has one of the worst ratings on Amazon (2,016 out of the 2,216 ratings are one star) because of a concerted campaign by fans protesting its DRM. It has also been downloaded an estimated 500,000 times on BitTorrent, and is well on its way to becoming the most illegally downloaded game ever.
How could Spore DRM kill PC gaming? Well, already Spore has become the most pirated game in the history.
The DRM that comes with the official game only allows customers to use it on three machines (after that you have to call EA for permission to activate the game on additional machines). This is nothing more than an inconvenience. (Although you can use Copy Games Software or DRM Removal Software to remove Spore DRM.) Gamers, in general, are more likely to have more than one computer, and to cycle through computers faster than other PC owners because they always want the latest, greatest, and fastest machines. Many will hit that three-machine limit quickly.
DRM is and always has been a big deal for people who knew about it, but as far as the average user was concerned, most really never got up close and personal with DRM. Yes, it was there, but under the surface and the hassle factor of the DRM wasn¡¯t enough to overcome the activation energy of doing something about it. So people live with their music tied to certain hardware and software players and their games being tied to CD keys and discs.
Up until now, I¡¯ve considered Spore DRM (Digital Rights Management) to be an evil, but a benign sort of evil. But the DRM built into Spore by EA changes all that and threatens PC gaming as we know it.
There is a lesson here for all media companies. Whether they are producing videogames, movies, or music, adding DRM won¡¯t stop piracy. The best way to stop piracy is to hobble the pirated version, not the official one.