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Ubisoft axes always-on DRM for PC games

Ubisoft axes always-on DRM for PC games

Wed 05 Sep 2012 8:14am GMT / 4:14am EDT / 1:14am PDT
GamesPublishing

Publisher finally drops controversial and restrictive requirements

French publisher Ubisoft has dropped it's controversial DRM for PC games that required the user to have an always-on internet connection.

According to a report by Rock Paper Shotgun, the service was dropped in June but only officially acknowledged now by Stephanie Perlotti, worldwide director of online games.

"We have listened to feedback, and since June last year our policy for all of PC games is that we only require a one-time online activation when you first install the game, and from then you are free to play the game offline," she said.

Ubisoft's decision to drop the always-on requirement will please many gamers angered by the service that restricted play in a bid to combat piracy. Games from the publisher can also now be activated on any number of PCs.

Perlotti clarified the decision using the forthcoming Assassin's Creed III as an example, stating: "Whenever you want to reach any online service, multiplayer, you will have to be connected, and obviously for online games you will also need to be online to play.

"But if you want to enjoy Assassin's Creed III single player, you will be able to do that without being connected. And you will be able to activate the game on as many machines as you want."

15 Comments

Tim Swan
Technical Director

10 9 0.9
Hopefully this will lead to more sales for Ubisoft. I haven't purchased any of their titles since they imposed their DRM regime.

Posted:A year ago

#1

Klaus Preisinger
Freelance Writing

953 804 0.8
Just when Diablo3 was doing the opposite, being extremely successful doing it. Almost as if the game mattered more than the DRM scheme.

Posted:A year ago

#2

Kingman Cheng
Illustrator and Animator

929 150 0.2
We have listened to feedback
If you listened to feedback ages ago, the system should have been axed from day one or perhaps even not launched at all.
But hey better late than never right?

Posted:A year ago

#3

Tom Pickard
Lead Environment Artist - Campaign Map

308 382 1.2
Wow it only took them a couple of years of people not buying their games... They deserve a pat on their back for their quick turnaround and wise descion making. Maybe try somthing radical like making games players want easier to get and actually get running than the priated copies...

Klaus - Diablo is a special case as it had all the love in the world from it's fans prior to release and a large set of blizzards always online wow players anyways... But... Im a massive fan yet Ive stopped playing and likely won't buy the expansions because Im sick of lag in a single player game so good will only goes so far.

Hmmm might have to give Ruse a second chance if all prior games no longer require it too.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Tom Pickard on 5th September 2012 10:45am

Posted:A year ago

#4

gi biz
;,pgc.eu

341 51 0.1
@Tom: we were lucky enough to be able to release Ruse without that DRM. Apparently Steam was enough for that so yeah, give it a shot ;)

Posted:A year ago

#5

Tom Pickard
Lead Environment Artist - Campaign Map

308 382 1.2
Michele - Ive been waiting for them to drop the DRM from all their games before buying any Ubi PC games I honestly thought it would be a few months... It took a while longer than expected, definetly a game Ive wanted to check out for a while.

Posted:A year ago

#6

Jim Webb
Executive Editor/Community Director

2,210 2,049 0.9
Good for them. Not often we see a comapny going back on their bad decisions.

Posted:A year ago

#7

Tom Keresztes
Programmer

632 223 0.4
@Michele,

I was about to say that my steam copy of that game did not seem to have the Ubisoft DRM. Otherwise i would have not bought it along with Wargame (which i prefer over Ruse)

Posted:A year ago

#8

Nicholas Pantazis
Senior Editor

963 1,160 1.2
And in related news, I'm now willing to buy Ubisoft PC games again. Good for them for changing, even if it took way too long. I do hope it leads to increased success.

Posted:A year ago

#9

Alex O'Dwyer
Animator

162 155 1.0
I think I'll buy Anno 2077 tonight :)

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Alex O'Dwyer on 5th September 2012 1:45pm

Posted:A year ago

#10

James Prendergast
Research Chemist

730 410 0.6
Headline: Ubisoft axes always-on DRM from games
Subline: Switches to browser-based delivery

;)

Posted:A year ago

#11

Rick Lopez
Illustrator, Graphic Designer

1,203 816 0.7
Thank you god, you have made UBI SOFT see the light... seriously its a step in the right direction, since i wont purchase any game with always on DRM, no matter how good it is.

Posted:A year ago

#12

Joshua Rose
Executive Producer / Lead Designer

191 74 0.4
One thing that I wonder whether or not it was mentioned... Is the DRM integrated into the game itself, or does the user have to create a Uplay account and activate the game on Uplay? Is this the case, or is it just like another SecuRom where you just put the key in when you launch the game and go?

If it's with Uplay, I wonder if they're doing some sort of auto activate scheme then letting it go offline. Does anybody know where we could find this info? Instead of having to look around for an hour to find it.

Posted:A year ago

#13

Pier Castonguay
Programmer

194 105 0.5
And the loop turn around. I swear I saw this exact news article when they released Prince of Persia (the cartoon one) with no DRM a few years ago after it had failed for AC.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Pier Castonguay on 5th September 2012 4:40pm

Posted:A year ago

#14

Graeme Jennings
Senior Producer

105 14 0.1
What exactly failed for AC PC? The *always on* DRM wasn't around when AC came out on PC.

Let's also remember that OEM leaked AC well in advance of it's shelf http://www.gamespot.com/news/ubisoft-sues-over-assassins-creed-leak-6195570

I personally don't see why everyone cried so much about the DRM but it's a personal choice.

Posted:A year ago

#15

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