PC Gaming: Could The Industry Survive Without DRM?

clippen05

New member
Jul 10, 2012
529
0
0
CrazyBlaze said:
Also why do people continue to hate Origins? Its just Steam for EA. Yeah it sucks to have multiple distrubition platforms but its gotten a lot better than when it first came out.
I don't hate it per-say. DRM-wise it is basically the same concept. But my issues with Origin are that it has no where near the amount of features that Steam has nor does it have massive discounts like Steam does. Origin's Christmas sale would mark things off for like 20%, wow, thanks EA. It's catalogue is pretty small aswell. That said, it does have a better refund policy and it even gave me DA:O for free (not that Steam hasn't given away many games for free) Origin isn't bad, it's just not as good, if that makes any sense.
 

Cid Silverwing

Paladin of The Light
Jul 27, 2008
3,134
0
0
Removing DRM from the industry would liberate it completely, and sales would skyrocket across the spectrum.
 

Idsertian

Member
Legacy
Apr 26, 2020
513
0
1
Starbird said:
What would happen if we did away with DRM completely?
Why, nothing. Nothing at all [http://youtu.be/PQM2QdWkjQI?t=7s]. All DRM does is slow down the pirate groups by a day or two (sometimes not even that), piss off the legitimate consumer and get in the way of said consumer enjoying their product. It does absolutely nothing to stop piracy at all. Seriously, I've heard of games with DRM being cracked the very same day of release, which goes to show you how effective it is.

Starbird said:
Would everyone just pirate everything?
Of course not. The vast majority of gamers buy their games perfectly legally, and I'd be willing to bet that a large portion of those that do pirate them, then go on to buy them anyway. Sometimes, as you've mentioned in the OP, it's the only way to ascertain if a game is worth buying or not, because the dev hasn't supplied a demo for it. If you're going to go on to buy the game, then no-one is losing out.

Yes, there will always be those that pirate. That's something you can't get away from and it's the cost of doing business. But the whole argument over piracy is blown out of proportion by the corporations rabbling on about it. I'd wager there's a bit of a Streisand effect going on, too, insofar as the devs and publishers banging on about it causes more people to look into piracy when they wouldn't have before.

Starbird said:
Would people still buy games?
Well, duh. Of course. Someone has to buy all those games that are being uploaded for pirates. :p

Nah, in all seriousness: Yes, people would still buy games. Like I said above, the vast majority of gamers buy their games, they don't pirate them.

Starbird said:
What could companies do to make people want to buy their games without DRM?
If companies start selling games without DRM, people will buy them. Hell, people buy them with DRM anyway, so it's obviously not a deal breaker that much. The bigger issue is all the price gouging, cutting content to sell as DLC and shitty "pay top dollar for this subscription and more top dollar for these 3 map map-packs" practices.

EDIT: Oh, and releasing half-finished, buggy pieces of crap software onto the market. That too.
 

DEAD34345

New member
Aug 18, 2010
1,929
0
0
Yes. In fact I think it would probably do better in the long run. Of the people I personally know who play video games, all of them are pirates to some degree. They also all spend a large portion of their income on video games regardless of that fact, and I don't think that they would spend any more money than they already do if piracy were not an option. For most of them in fact I don't think they could spend much more money on games without sacrificing basic necessities.

There's also the fact that many of my childhood friends, and myself, were only introduced to video games at all through piracy when we were young. I likely wouldn't have had video games at all throughout my childhood if they hadn't been available illegally, my family couldn't afford them, and I therefore wouldn't have grown up into a gamer who spends stupid amounts of money on his hobby as I do today.

Of course all of that is irrelevant anyway, because DRM doesn't stop piracy. Pirates don't have to put up with DRM after-all, only legitimate users do. I've even seen people pirate games in order to avoid bad DRM.

This post isn't meant to be taken as pro-piracy by the way. I'm not endorsing piracy, I make no comment on the morality of it (my opinion is basically that I don't care one way or the other), I just don't see any evidence that it has negative effects on the games industry, and have a bunch of personal experiences that seem to tell me the opposite is true.

DRM on the otherhand, I know has negative effects, on both the consumers and the sellers of games. I honestly don't know why it's used at all, I doubt that games publishers are oblivious enough to think it's helping them by combating piracy as they sometimes claim, but they keep using it so it must be doing something for them.
 

Bat Vader

New member
Mar 11, 2009
4,996
0
0
I think it would actually be better off. CD Projekt Red doesn't put any DRM in their games and they have have been doing great. This is what happened when someone admitted to pirating the game.

A bit NSFW

 

fix-the-spade

New member
Feb 25, 2008
8,639
0
0
Starbird said:
What would happen if we did away with DRM completely? Would everyone just pirate everything? Would people still buy games? What could companies do to make people want to buy their games without DRM?
This has been answered over the years by a number of publishers, piracy numbers don't budge without DRM because DRM has proved totally ineffective.

Never forget that Spore was one of the most pirated games in history and it was chock full of abusive DRM. That was six years ago now and the big publishers still haven't learned anything, for the most part DRM is simply burnt dollars in the internet age.

I think Valve have it about right by calling piracy a service issue rather than a crime issue. Games with difficult, unreliable or intrusive DRM frequently make the list of most pirated for a given year, Ubisoft and EA will no doubt deny that fervently as they cling to their systems. I've used Steam and kept using Steam mostly because it's accessible and convenient,
 

Windcaler

New member
Nov 7, 2010
1,332
0
0
DRM does not stop piracy. Everyone knows this and anyone that says otherwise is either lying or largely misinformed. I think the issue surrounding piracy is most people think that each pirated game equals a lost sale which is not true and can no be proven. There are many cases where games were pirated and saw more sales because people got to try the actual game instead of watch a trailer, review, or "verticle slice" that may or may not have been representative of the product.

Usually it only takes a few hours and at most a couple of days to crack DRM. The longest recent crack took about a week and that was for Simcity which required server emulation not the traditional DRM crack.

Bottom line: If DRM went away things would mostly stay the same. People who want to buy games would keep buying games (and DRM wouldnt be getting in the way). People who want to pirate games would continue to pirate games.
 

sageoftruth

New member
Jan 29, 2010
3,417
0
0
My go-to method for making wise purchases lately has been TotalBiscuit's "First Impressions", which despite the name, aren't him going in blind, but rather going in after he has played it long enough to give a decent summary about it while he's playing it in front of us. Even if you don't agree with his opinions on it, the game footage won't lie there, since it's honest start-to-finish footage without the jumping around from best part to best part that some reviews can do.
Of course, you may want to check out first impression videos where the player actually DOES go in blind. Would make his comments far less well-thought-out, but is better for showing you the game from the start. After all, a game won't be any good if you lose interest at the beginning before it gets to the good parts.
Together, I think both of them could present a pretty thorough synopsis of what the game is like before you buy it.
 

Morgoth780

New member
Aug 6, 2014
152
0
0
A point someone made in another thread (or possibly another forum entirely) that investors might be less likely to invest in publishers/developers if they didn't appear to be making an effort to combat piracy.

So it's possible we'd have less big budget titles. Which may or may not be a bad thing with the state of recent releases such as AC:U and to a lesser extent FC4.

I'd argue the biggest deterrent to piracy is the use of services superior to piracy as well as multiplayer focused games that require a purchase to be best. StarCraft II does have a (somewhat crappy) offline mode, but most of the enjoyment from the game comes from the multiplayer which appeals to the core audience.
 

asdfen

New member
Oct 27, 2011
226
0
0
games/software has been pirated before the internet. People who pirate will pirate regardless of DRM. The only ones who are suffering from DRM are the paying customers.

Even DRM like putting a random word from a manual/serial number is a pain as those things are easy to loose and one of the reasons I have multiple copies of stuff
 

Fieldy409_v1legacy

New member
Oct 9, 2008
2,686
0
0
In terms of us buying pc games? Absolutely, 90% of DRM cant stop us from pirating if we want to anyways(Apparently Diablo 3 has been sucessful, but puts off a lot of customers with its horribleness)

But I dont think DRM is really about us, I think its about coming to the shareholders and saying "This is what we are doing to fight piracy and therefore boost sales"

So if our programmers went up to the suits and said "We are doing nothing about piracy because we cant stop it" I suspect a lot of money would be pulled out of the industry by the suits getting cold feet.
 

kasperbbs

New member
Dec 27, 2009
1,855
0
0
It survived this far considering that the only working DRM was a rare case of online only bullshit.
 

RhombusHatesYou

New member
Mar 21, 2010
5,800
0
0
Morgoth780 said:
A point someone made in another thread (or possibly another forum entirely) that investors might be less likely to invest in publishers/developers if they didn't appear to be making an effort to combat piracy.
It goes beyond that. Companies can be sued by stakeholders and shareholders if they can't show they've "taken all reasonable steps" to protect their products... and as I said in another thread "reasonable" isn't defined by the consumer but stakeholders in these cases.
 

RedDeadFred

Illusions, Michael!
May 13, 2009
4,896
0
0
Yes. It's not helping at all. Sure, pirates have to wait longer now for a crack, but really, it barely slows them down. I do think that piracy is hurting the industry, but DRM just isn't the answer.
 

Knight Captain Kerr

New member
May 27, 2011
1,283
0
0
I think GOG really have proven that you don't need DRM. DRM doesn't work, games will be pirated anyway and DRM barely slows them down, it just makes things worse for legitimate customers. Not only that but DRM costs money to implement in the first place, it's an expense that clearly isn't worth it.
 

Mahorfeus

New member
Feb 21, 2011
996
0
0
I'd be interested in seeing what happens, I guess. DRM and not piracy seems to be the common enemy to gamers these days. I think the impact on the industry would be far more substantial than some people think, but it would hardly collapse the industry, or anything ridiculous like that.
 

Rozalia1

New member
Mar 1, 2014
1,095
0
0
Can't say either way as I'm not so arrogant as to claim I can know the future with 100% accuracy, however if I had to give an answer I'd say no. What people tend to forget is DRM doesn't have to be unbroken to stop people pirating (not all of course, merely some).
The easiest ones are simple downloads, others involve overwriting some files, and some are a bit more in depth than that. Another thing to remember is that as PCs aren't static some pirates are going to run into problems running the application anyway even if they get it cracked.

That added effort can work to prevent piracy, it works for other things so I don't see why it wouldn't apply to piracy. All that goes out of the window if pirating becomes as simple as downloading some files in every instance, and "cracked" versions started popping up on release, or god forbid before release (which has happened even with DRM so that number can only increase).
Once pirating gets the rep that its as simple as downloading something, and that its safe.... boom market is dead in the water and the bosses ain't going to be happy. So wish for DRMless future if you want them to go all in with console DRM I suppose, ultimately makes no difference to me but likely does to most people on this site.

Hubblignush said:
Obviously it would be fine. Generally pirates are the ones who buy the most games anyway (save for reviewers like Yahtzee, who buys a new game every week on his own, but that's an incredibly small minority) since they are the ones most interested in the product.

If anything, DRM is the fucking problem. AAA games make money in the fucking hundreds of millions, they don't have a problem, it's just this outright greed that they have to squeeze out every last penny. Fucking hell, you make something, I can guarentee you'll not get 100 % worth of it, whatever it is, but you should honestly by fine with it if you mkae more than it cost, then it's no bloody problem. Remember, the producers here are fucking rich, they aren't starving single mothers who have to sell their youngest kid to a pedophile if they don't make rent, they're millionairs who can do pretty much whatever the fuck they want with their money. I couldn't care less if they made $350.000.000 rather than $400.000.000.
You got any to back up that ridiculous pirates buy more games claim?

Wanting to be paid for your efforts is greed? I suppose your boss should take 20% off your wages because hey stop being greedy he is still paying you the 80%. Oh and apparently according to you piracy only effects the big companies who are rich, news to me.
 

chikusho

New member
Jun 14, 2011
873
0
0
Rozalia1 said:
You got any to back up that ridiculous pirates buy more games claim?
Honestly, this should actually be common knowledge by now.

http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2010/05/file-sharers-are-content-industrys-largest-customers/
http://www.dailytech.com/Nearly+Half+of+Americans+Pirate+Casually+But+Pirates+Purchase+More+Legal+Content/article29702.htm
http://www.theguardian.com/music/2009/apr/21/study-finds-pirates-buy-more-music
 

Xyebane

Disembodied Floating Skull
Feb 28, 2009
120
0
0
I'm pretty sure the industry would do fine without DRM. I know I would probably buy more games not fewer. Intrusive DRM is the #1 reason I won't buy a game that I would otherwise be interested in trying.