Capcom has apologised to PlayStation 3 owners for not warning that a constant internet connection is required for downloadable game Final Fight: Double Impact.
Users are required to be permanently signed in to the PlayStation Network to play the game, even in single player mode. A warning of this requirement was included in the European version of the game but not in North America and Asia.
The issue gained notoriety following complaints on the IGN message forums, which also pointed out that it was impossible to share the game across multiple accounts. Normally games can be shared with up to five accounts, typically family members using the same console.
An alleged Capcom representative replied to the complaint, indicating that: "This was employed to combat the rampant 'PSN Sharing' that has been going on over the last year."
The post also stated that: "We are not committed to do this with all titles moving forward but the only way to evaluate impact was to try it with one title first."
Although the provenance of the post is still unclear Capcom's official response makes it clear that the online-only feature was intentional, although the lack of warning was an error.
"Typically, the notification for a required PlayStation Network connection appears in the full game description when a game is downloaded from the PlayStation Store. Unfortunately when populating this content this detail was overlooked and wasn't included in the versions of the game that released in North America and Asia," reads the official statement.
"It was included in the release for Europe. Capcom should have checked to make sure the notification was included when the final game was made available and we sincerely apologise for this oversight."
On the issue of DRM the statement adds: "The DRM requirements for Final Fight: Double Impact are not unique to this release. This protection mechanism has been implemented in numerous games offered on the PlayStation Store before."
The feature has indeed been used before by other titles, but generally only for online-only games such as the Sony published Warhawk and SOCOM: Confrontation.
The question of PSN sharing is not addressed in the statement, implying that it was fully intended.