[Update] Ubisoft’s New DRM Already Cracked

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[Update] According to Ubisoft,  news of a functional crack is just a rumour.

“You have probably seen rumours on the web that Assassin’s Creed II and Silent Hunter 5 have been cracked,” Ubisoft’s statement reads. “Please know that this rumour is false and while a pirated version may seem to be complete at start up, any gamer who downloads and plays a cracked version will find that their version is not complete.”

[Original] Remember when we told you about the new, rather obtrusive and draconian DRM for Ubisoft games? You know? The one that requires an always-on internet connection, and Ubisoft’s servers to be on?

Remember how we said it would be inevitable that hackers and crackers would bypass the copy protection, leaving only paying customers affected by the annoyance? Well apparently it’s already been cracked, leaving only paying customers affected by the annoyance!

Silent Hunter 5, Ubisoft’s anticipated submarine sim was released earlier this week – and according to the internet its copy protection was bypassed just a day later. The version available on shadier parts of the internet requires no connection to Ubisoft’s servers at all. Just replace the executable file, and it works. This is the same DRM that’s been confirmed to ship with the PC versions of Assassin’s Creed II and Splinter Cell : Conviction.

This highlights the biggest problem I have with DRM. We here at Lazygamer abhor piracy – we’d like to think our moral compasses are well-aligned, and agree that publishers and developers have the right to protect their interests. Thing is? if it detracts from the experience of the paying userbase, it only serves to increase that which it’s intended to combat.

Of course, people will pirate Ubisoft games, justifying it to themselves that the reason they’re doing so is because of the DRM – but pirates will look for any excuse to help them sleep better at night. Ironclad Games’ excellent “Sins of a Solar Empire” which shipped with no DRM whatsoever proved that pirates will illegally download games – even when the DRM they use as a scapegoat is absent. Damned if you do, damned if you don’t.

Victimless crime is still a crime, and pirates could argue that since they’re making a copy of the original without taking the original away it’s not theft – but even they know that’s complete crud, and that it’s once again a crutch to help them feel better about themselves. And don’t give me that “It’s not a lost sale because I wouldn’t have bought it anyway” rubbish. If that’s the case? You should be playing it either.

Ok, I think I’m done ranting – but remember kids…Don’t copy that floppy.

Source : Kotaku

Last Updated: March 4, 2010

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