Will Electronic Arts Spore DRM Be The Undoing Of Video Games?

Millions of video game lovers, many of whom were devoted to the widely popular Sims video games, waited anxiously for Electronic Arts newest video game release called Spore. Electronics Arts did not disappoint it’s many fans as the $49.99 regular version of Spore, the $9.99 Spore Creature Creator and the $79.99 Galactic version of Spore were released without a hitch and were quickly snatched off the retail stores shelves. Although Spore’s sales didn’t quite match the volume of sales of video game monoliths Guitar Hero III or Grand Theft Auto IV, it did very well. It is usually about a week after a video game release when the people who bought the game begin flooding the Internet with either their personal praise or damnation of the video game. They talk about things like game play, graphics speed and resolution, end game, online play, character building etc. Not this time! With Spore, the talk was all about its DRM!

What is DRM? The copyright protection called DRM is an acronym for Digital Rights Management, a term used to describe the different techniques for restricting the free use and transfer of digital content. DRM is used in a number of media, but is found most often in music and video files. Many of people believe that DRM should stand for Digital Restrictions Manager being that it manages users restrictions while taking away their rights. Companies like Apple began using DRM under the auspices of fighting piracy. Has it worked? You tell me. After the news of the type of severe DRM Electronics Arts put on Spore spread to future buyers, it took only days for over 500,000 illegal copies of the Spore video game (without DRM) to be downloaded from P2P BitTorrent sites on the Internet. Does DRM work? No! It ticks people off. If you don’t believe it, ask Amazon.com, where thousands of people unhappy with Spore’s DRM restrictions gave the new video game a lowly one star rating. Thanks to DRM, Spore has become the most pirated game ever.

So, what was so bad about Spore’s DRM to get so many people in an uproar? Here is what it is all about and I am going to tell you from first hand experience because I purchased the $79.99 Galactic version of Spore and after one more download, the game will be worthless. Because my video card was not set perfectly to run Spore, I received a warning message after the first installation that I needed to change my video card settings and reinstall Spore again or the game would not work. One installation used. I did what was required and reinstalled Spore again. No error messages this time, the game works wonderfully. Two installations used. So why am I counting installations? You see, with Spore’s DRM restrictions, the purchaser can only install the game three times. After the third installation, your bought and paid for game of Spore will be nothing but a worthless piece of plastic. You can play it, but you will never be able to install it again. So you pray nothing goes wrong with your computer because you won’t be able to install Spore to a new one. If I would have known about Electronic Arts DRM restrictions for Spore, I never would have purchased it and I may have gone as far as joining the other 500,000 so-called pirates visiting a free game downloads site to download a DRM-less version.

Some folks say that a company should be allowed to protect their copyrighted products, and I agree as long as they don’t take the rights away from the new owners, the people who have purchased those copyrighted products. I want to first say that I don’t necessarily hate the idea of copyright protection but I do hate the way DRM is being abused by the companies. When a person buys a copyrighted product, the copyright should now belong to the new owner along with the product. As far as I am concerned, when I purchase something it should be mine to do with as I please. As long as it does not involve harming, torturing or killing a living creature, I should have complete and total rights to do what I want with that product. Here are some examples of what I mean. If I were to purchase a German Shepherd dog ($800), it is mine. If I want to either sell or give my dog away to someone else, I have every right to do so. If I buy a car ($25,000) and a week later feel like selling it or giving it away, I can because I have the every right to do so. If I were to buy a house ($200,000) outright for cash (I wish), that house would be completely mine to sell or even give it away if I choose. If I have complete and total rights to do what I want with my dog, my car and my house, will somebody please tell me why can I face criminal charges and punishment for doing what I want with my $79.99 game of Spore or any other video game for that matter. Heck, with EA’s new DRM restrictions imposed on my Spore video game, I can’t even install it more than three times. In truth, Spore still belongs to Electronic Arts even though I forked out my hard earned cash for the rights of ownership. Therein lies the true crime my friends. And the video game industry is wondering why more and more normally honest folks have turned to pirating.

Sadly, video game companies like Electronic Arts are unwittingly causing the downfall of the video game industry with their abuse of DRM restrictions. Piracy paranoia has already taken a huge bite out of the PC and Mac game industry. Remember when stores like Egghead and Electronics Boutique used to be stocked wall to wall with computer games for your PC or Mac. Then they come up with all of these unjust anti-piracy rules that if you open the games packaging there will be no exchanges or refunds allowed. Are you kidding me. With all of the different computer configurations out there due to lack of standards within the industry, you were lucky not to run into a conflict when installing or playing the game. How many of you remember buying a $50 computer game only to have it not work when you installed it. Remember how you felt when you tried to get your money back for a $50 game that you never even got to play only to be told by the suspicious salesman at the stores counter, Too Bad, No Refund, No Exchange Policy Here! A lot of people remember. That is the main reason good honest folk turned to P2P download sites for their computer games in the first place. No risk of losing their money through no fault of their own. Thus began the downfall of the video game industry for PC’s and Mac’s. Now when you go into a store looking to purchase a game for your PC, all you will find is a little rack of about fifteen computer games tucked away somewhere in the back of a video game store.

Don’t look now, but the video game industry is following that same path of self destruction as before, and the DRM restrictions they are putting on games like Spore will be their undoing. If the fact that the Spore DRM policy has caused it to become the most pirated video game in history does not bring about changes in copyright policies, then they will be in deep trouble as an industry. I realize I am ranting but I tend to get ticked off when I am being ripped off and I am not alone here. Head over to CNet or Amazon.com to see what people are saying about the Spore DRM policy. The video game makers had better listen too, because they are on the path of causing their own demise with such a draconic DRM policy. Electronic Arts, the maker of Spore especially had better open up its ears, because over 500,000 people downloading DRM free versions of the video game from Free Game Downloads sites in only a few days makes a thunderous sound. The release of Spore was supposed to be a happy day for all. Instead, EA’s punishing DRM policy may have begun the downfall of the video game industry, and that would be a sad day for everyone. 에볼루션카지노 주소

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *