Ubisoft DRM Authentication Servers Go Down

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Here's a new headline for you: "Ubisoft Now Officially A Bunch Of Braindead Cockmongers."

What gets me is that anyone actually BOUGHT the damn game in the first place. I think it would have been great if the game had shipped and sold NOT ONE SINGLE COPY. That would have got our point about how much we hate stupid DRM across.

DarkSaber:

AC2 HAS been craccked, and has been for a few days now.

That crack is beta, it does not allow to play missions, just walking around locations. When the game tries to connect to the server - it crashes. So Ubisoft actually does make pirates very upset. That's why servers are down: angry teens from different countries having troubles with money and patience DDOS servers while waiting for the proper crack.

I am not defending DRM or something, i just tell what i know. I live in Russia and in my town there will be no AC2 dvd until the end of next week. How can one wait for such time and not try to use any posibility to play the game even a little? Still, i will buy it anyway, will there be a proper crack or not.

SenseOfTumour:
Breaking News, Assassin's 3 found to have anthrax inside the case of every retail copy, and the leaked version on torrent sites found to have a code for a free pizza at Dominos!

An Ubisoft rep made the statement 'The anthrax was to prevent shoplifters and the free pizza is to make those who would steal our product overweight and less attractive, hopefully leading to less pirates in the next generation.'

Industry leaders are unanimous in praising this form of DRM as an overwhelming success.

Oh god, don't give them ideas, man!

commasplice:

SenseOfTumour:
Breaking News, Assassin's 3 found to have anthrax inside the case of every retail copy, and the leaked version on torrent sites found to have a code for a free pizza at Dominos!

An Ubisoft rep made the statement 'The anthrax was to prevent shoplifters and the free pizza is to make those who would steal our product overweight and less attractive, hopefully leading to less pirates in the next generation.'

Industry leaders are unanimous in praising this form of DRM as an overwhelming success.

Oh god, don't give them ideas, man!

Free pizza, man! C'mon, who's not going to pirate it now? Pizza!

OT:I hope it's sabotage. Maybe there's one angry employee who's breaking the server just as the other 1000 fix it.

lol so now you HAVE to be a pirate to play the fucking game. Way to go Ubi, you showed them.

Here's another thing to think about: How's this going to affect BG&E2? I'm already nervous enough as-is about the possibility of it being sucked into development hell. All we need is for Ubisoft to lose enough money that they decide to nix the project altogether.

New point, new post...

I'm not actually anti DRM as such, I understand they need to protect their product from theft.

However, once you've installed the game, typed in the CD key, or digitally registered the game, or authenticated with the server, or whatever else they choose to do, that should be the end of it. I'm not seeing anti piracy ads half an hour into movies I buy, so why should it being interrupting the enjoyment of my paid for game? Again, every time they make the paid for version worse than the illegal but free version, they're just sending more and more loyal customers to the nearest torrent site.

People keep knocking Steam but once installed, you pretty much can set it to offline and it'll never connect again and you'll have full access to all your games.

On top of that, you get things like 'Defense Grid' the great tower defense game, recently self patched itself for me, in doing so adding support for future DLC. Oh great, another way to try to sell me stuff. Except in doing so they've added extra functions and 4 free levels, months after the game was done released and sold. Portal also has been getting upgraded and I think these stories might have taken longer to break if it hadn't been for the simplicity of upgrades Steam offers.

Ok, Portal can be called a simple marketing ploy that wasn't asked for, but I think Defense Grid and the still constant support of games like Team Fortress 2 are a fine example of good coming from Steam, and things many people would have missed if they are like me and have a few dozen games and had to visit nearly 50 sites a month to see if there was anything new that needed manually downloading and installing.

Also, Steam (from my viewpoint at least) is a great outlet for indie games, and as sales have shown, it's better to get 50,000 sales at $5 than maybe 2,000 at $20, especially when the overheads are so low, in terms of no production costs, shipping etc.

I don't know if I'm alone, but I'm a sucker for the bundle packs, when you see say 7 indie games for 10, it's almost too cheap to say no even if you haven't played any of them.

I have one thing to say to you Ubisoft...

Marq:

Hubilub:
First the PS3, now the PC.

Not at all! My pirated version works perfectly!

And thus lies the heinous irony, sitting upon the head of Ubisoft like a monstrous toupee made of yarn.

(No, I don't know where that came from.)

SenseOfTumour:
New point, new post...

People keep knocking Steam but once installed, you pretty much can set it to offline and it'll never connect again and you'll have full access to all your games.

On top of that, you get things like 'Defense Grid' the great tower defense game, recently self patched itself for me, in doing so adding support for future DLC. Oh great, another way to try to sell me stuff. Except in doing so they've added extra functions and 4 free levels, months after the game was done released and sold. Portal also has been getting upgraded and I think these stories might have taken longer to break if it hadn't been for the simplicity of upgrades Steam offers.

Ok, Portal can be called a simple marketing ploy that wasn't asked for, but I think Defense Grid and the still constant support of games like Team Fortress 2 are a fine example of good coming from Steam, and things many people would have missed if they are like me and have a few dozen games and had to visit nearly 50 sites a month to see if there was anything new that needed manually downloading and installing.

Also, Steam (from my viewpoint at least) is a great outlet for indie games, and as sales have shown, it's better to get 50,000 sales at $5 than maybe 2,000 at $20, especially when the overheads are so low, in terms of no production costs, shipping etc.

I don't know if I'm alone, but I'm a sucker for the bundle packs, when you see say 7 indie games for 10, it's almost too cheap to say no even if you haven't played any of them.

Eh, you make some good points, but A: I find it annoying that Steam even has to start up for me to run a completely different program (back when I first got The Orange Box, it'd slow my computer down som'n fierce before letting me play, but I've since reformatted, so maybe it'll be a little nicer to me) and B: a lot of the games are priced around the same as their physical counterparts on other systems, which is a huuuuge turn off for me. I don't like paying the same price to lease that other pay to own. Don't get me wrong, I'm not trying to hate on Steam or anything. I own it, I've used it, I don't hate it; I just wish some things were different.

I (and probably everyone else who has done work on Internet based applications) knew this was gonna happen. I just didn't know it would happen this quickly.

It's abundantly clear Ubisoft doesn't have adequate disaster recovery plan in place (I would've bet good money on this)...10 hours into a server crash, and they don't have a workaround? Unacceptable at any company I've ever worked with. People would've been fired.

It's also abundantly clear Ubisoft had no idea about the volume of traffic their servers would expect. The lack of planning is unbelievable. I'm 100% sure they had VERY accurate sales forecasts based on pre-orders, and they STILL didn't get it right. WTF?

Amateur hour (which was a given).

So anyone have a crack yet?

I think this is the best thing that could have happened! Now even the average consumer will learn of this horrendous DRM system. Hopefully that will increase the player's impact on Ubisoft's policies.

commasplice:

Eh, you make some good points, but A: I find it annoying that Steam even has to start up for me to run a completely different program (back when I first got The Orange Box, it'd slow my computer down som'n fierce before letting me play, but I've since reformatted, so maybe it'll be a little nicer to me) and B: a lot of the games are priced around the same as their physical counterparts on other systems, which is a huuuuge turn off for me. I don't like paying the same price to lease that other pay to own. Don't get me wrong, I'm not trying to hate on Steam or anything. I own it, I've used it, I don't hate it; I just wish some things were different.

I can't say I've noticed any real performance hit from having Steam running, its fairly small and inoffensive really, but that's in my opinion. However I'm in agreement on your second point, but I tend to mainly buy games from the midweek and weekend sales, and the xmas and annual sales, where it's at least 50% and more likely to be be 75-90% off. It's just a case of being a savvy customer, shopping around and not buying from Steam if it's cheaper elsewhere :D

commasplice:

CopperBoom:

Lukeje:
May I be the first to call `sabotage'? This all seems a little too convenient...

First thing I thought, though it really was bound to happen naturally at some point.
Gamers steal though, what can be done to fight that?

Correction: people steal.

That is true. Still the question of how can companies combat human nature of "if you can, do" in terms of piracy.

image
Seriously though. This is anti-irony. So expected that we didn't expect it to happen.

Hubilub:
First the PS3, now the PC.

Now we just have to wait for every 360 in the world to stop working and the circle is complete!

...oh wait.

No no no, when 360 stops working, it doesn't complete a cricle, just 3/4 of it become red... hence it doesn't make 360=circle...

Bad joke, isn't it?

It does beg the question that what are you actually buying when you purchase a game these days? I remember once upon a time that when you bought a game it meant you could actually play it when and where you wanted.

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

*breaath*

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAH

Oh, hey, shitstorm going down on the Ubisoft forums.

Yoom21:
In amazon AC2 is lower than "Chuzzle" by pop cap games. Ubisof, I think you just ****ed yourself up.

no. 81 in the bestsellers for one of the most anticipated games of the year. Wonderful.

Kandid-:
Anyone who buys your games with this online "service" is a lab rat, testing an incomplete, hopeless system.

You WILL succumb and remove it. Resistance is futile.

Throwaway85:
Congratulations Ubisoft. You've just told all of your customers that if they want a working version of the game, they should pirate it. If they want one crippled by retarded DRM that everyone hates and was predicted to fail, then buy it from you.

You make it so easy to be an honest PC Gamer. I mean, really. At the end of the day, I just want a product that works. If that means ripping you off to get a superior product, I'm willing to do so. I'm even eager to do so in light of the contempt with which you treat your customers.

You should see if you can hire some of those pirates. They know how to put out a better product than you.

I'm honestly interested to know whether Ubisoft is going to try and play this off as no big deal or if they're going to throw someone under the bus and stage a public execution. I'm hoping on the latter just because I know that that guy is going to end up getting some of the most hilarious hate mail in the world and I'm hoping he'll have the stones to post it on the internet.

Edit: My favorite so far:

ErodeTheSoul:

ms-kleaneasy:

Like I said, we're trying to get to the bottom of it, we're as much at a loss as you guys right now I'm afraid

And that would be the reason why (or at least one of the many reasons why) this system is ridiculous. You don't know what's going on? Then maybe you shouldn't have made the ability to play the game rely on you so much.

The fact that it is not working -- that people are unable to play their SINGLE PLAYER games -- and you have no idea why is just a testament to how unfairly this system treats its actual customers.

Something Ubi doesn't seem to understand is that, in order for this DRM to be even close to the realm of okay, you needed to have 100% perfect, flawless, no issues connecting, never-ever-going-to-crash-or-go-down (thus-making-my-game-unplayable) implementation on your end; and you needed to be completely aware of every possible scenario involving the loss of ability to play.

Impossible? Quite. But your system of shackling my single player experience to your ability to keep things running on your end dictates that this is your responsibility. If you can't keep up with your end of the bargain, maybe it's time you let the customers have their single player games back.

I somehow manage to avoid all these disasters. The Mass Effect DRM malarky, the PS3 glitch and, since I got ACII on PS3, this hilarious PR disaster. :)

Haha, I bet they're a little embarrassed about they're whole new system now...

SavingPrincess:

commasplice:
Personally, I don't care how non-invasive Steam pretends to be. Sure, it's convenient to a certain degree, but the days when all I had to do was enter in a CD Key during install are still fresh in my mind. Why can't we revert back to that system? The DRM's just as effective and at least then, they can still pretend to be doing something about piracy, just like they're pretending right now.

I have never looked at Steam as a DRM system... I always saw it as a digital distribution system. It's interesting to me that people view it as a DRM system.

Actually, I feel exactly the same way. I understand that it is a DRM system on some level, but it's never been anything but convenient for me. The only real DRM I see in steam is the initial activation, but it seems to me that if I'm willing to buy a game online I don't have much room to bitch about having to authenticate it for 2 seconds when I download it.

Aww.

Nah, I expected this to happen sooner.

Hiphophippo:

SavingPrincess:

commasplice:
Personally, I don't care how non-invasive Steam pretends to be. Sure, it's convenient to a certain degree, but the days when all I had to do was enter in a CD Key during install are still fresh in my mind. Why can't we revert back to that system? The DRM's just as effective and at least then, they can still pretend to be doing something about piracy, just like they're pretending right now.

I have never looked at Steam as a DRM system... I always saw it as a digital distribution system. It's interesting to me that people view it as a DRM system.

Actually, I feel exactly the same way. I understand that it is a DRM system on some level, but it's never been anything but convenient for me. The only real DRM I see in steam is the initial activation, but it seems to me that if I'm willing to buy a game online I don't have much room to bitch about having to authenticate it for 2 seconds when I download it.

I also assume that if Valve at some point decides to take down their oldest games from the servers (you know, HL1, CS 1.6), then they'd allow customers to back them all up on CD's and DVD's. I doubt they'd ever do that though. Both HL1 and CS 1.6 are still quite popular. Thus far the master server is also blazing fast after so many years.

Smooth move, Ex-Lax.

I mean, I've defended the right for companies to put DRM in their games before, but this system is just something completely indefensible.

Oh dear, looks like someone forgot to check the damn system actually works.

Or possibly, are authentication servers particularly vulnerable to DDoS attacks? I'd assume they were and I wouldn't put suc hthings past pissed off pc gamers.

Which Ubisoft game will be the most pirated of 2010?

SenseOfTumour:
There's a very simple fix, everyone who has paid for the game, go pirate it and play the unfettered version without the fuckery attached.

After all, are you not legally allowed to make one copy for your own backup needs?

I really can't see them actively hunting down their own customers for downloading their game after buying it.

Note I'm not advocating piracy (even tho I have done before), but once you've paid, I think you're entitled to do whatever you like to enjoy what you've paid for.

Breaking News, Assassin's 3 found to have anthrax inside the case of every retail copy, and the leaked version on torrent sites found to have a code for a free pizza at Dominos!

An Ubisoft rep made the statement 'The anthrax was to prevent shoplifters and the free pizza is to make those who would steal our product overweight and less attractive, hopefully leading to less pirates in the next generation.'

Industry leaders are unanimous in praising this form of DRM as an overwhelming success.

Bravo. That was actually pretty damn funny in an angry kinda way.

Woodsey:
AHAHAHAHAAHAHA!

I knew it! I fucking knew it!

Idiots.

Petition here: http://www.petitiononline.com/mod_perl/signed.cgi?ew15dl94&1

Yeah because online petitions always accomplish something.

Ooh I know next let's "boycott" ubisoft.

OT: Actually, it serves them right for this drm nonsense, but at worst I see a drop in sales for a bit. If its not a recurring problem I'm sure people will forget it soon enough once the servers are back up. It's not like it was a worldwide blackout.

Lulz. Absolute lulz.

They deserve this.

We, their customers, don't.

Maybe they'll learn now... maybe.

Honestly, I cannot believe that maintaining these servers, with potentially thousands of people connecting to them at the same time, costs less than the money they lose from piracy. especially considering the game is already cracked.

Well, this is interesting.

When three Texas gamers couldn't get online to play "Call of Duty 4" or "Halo 3" on their Xbox 360s last December, they decided to sue.

In a class-action lawsuit filed January 4, gamers Keith Kay, Orlando Perez and Shannon Smith claim that they and millions of other Xbox Live users suffered damages in excess of $5 million.

Props to Farinhir over on the Ubisoft forums for providing the link.

Oi, I try and keep up my enthusiasm for AC2 PC launch day and now this. Now I'm wondering if the thing'll even work on launch day here in the US.

What I never got about PC game companies that incorporate DRM: why do they publically announce DRM? It just ends up creating nothing but uproars from the PC gaming community at large. It also gives pirates an idea of how the system works so they can crack it more easily.

Ragnar Homsar:
Oi, I try and keep up my enthusiasm for AC2 PC launch day and now this. Now I'm wondering if the thing'll even work on launch day here in the US.

What I never got about PC game companies that incorporate DRM: why do they publically announce DRM? It just ends up creating nothing but uproars from the PC gaming community at large. It also gives pirates an idea of how the system works so they can crack it more easily.

Because it's all for show. "Look at us, we've got this new DRM that can beat any hacker. Investors, buy our stocks; users, buy our games and suck our cocks." They just don't realize that this pisses off gamers and gives pirates THAT MUCH more satisfaction out of ripping them off. My only other guess would be that maybe it's supposed to have some kind of deterrent effect, too, but as far as I can tell, it only really deters paying customers.

SavingPrincess:
I believe Ubi was quoted saying that "Steam isn't effective enough in combatting piracy," which blew my mind. I can't remember the exact quote but it was a giant slap in the face of Steam in general.

That's because Steam isn't stopping any piracy. It might slow down cracking teams a bit while they wait for the last piece of data to be downloaded, but after that it takes them a few hours to a day to create the files needed to get a fully functional steam-free game.

The only exceptions are Valve games for some reason. Sure, you can find Half Life 2 on torrent sites but that, TF2 and Portal are the only ones I've consistently been able to find and even those games have very few seeders.(might be bad google results, but it's what the average person will find)

Flour:

SavingPrincess:
I believe Ubi was quoted saying that "Steam isn't effective enough in combatting piracy," which blew my mind. I can't remember the exact quote but it was a giant slap in the face of Steam in general.

That's because Steam isn't stopping any piracy. It might slow down cracking teams a bit while they wait for the last piece of data to be downloaded, but after that it takes them a few hours to a day to create the files needed to get a fully functional steam-free game.

The only exceptions are Valve games for some reason. Sure, you can find Half Life 2 on torrent sites but that, TF2 and Portal are the only ones I've consistently been able to find and even those games have very few seeders.(might be bad google results, but it's what the average person will find)

Steam is run by Valve .... They've made it very easy for you to download the game once you own it, and redownload it in the future if you get a new system. There is no point in pirating it as well because they price their games reasonably, wait a week or so it'll be on sale again. And Steam doesn't make it a complete headache to play. Sure for people who's system barely run without steam they have problems but for the rest of us its fine. And since every pirate I ever knew is using steam these days, buying games. I'd say its done a pretty damn good job at stopping piracy.

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