Avalanche Studio thumbs its nose at Ubisoft's DRM.
In a direct response to comments made by fellow game studio leader Martin Edmonson defending Ubisoft's right to protect its property, the founder of Avalanche Studios Christofer Sundberg said that DRM is a bunch of bollocks. Sundberg knows that piracy is a problem, but believes that all DRM does is punish the people who've bought your game legitimately.
"I don't like always-on DRM solutions at all, since they offer nothing to the consumer," Sundberg said. "If you continuously give something extra for registering and being online, and award them for actually paying for and playing your game, it'd be different, but always-on DRM only says:
'Thank you for buying our game, we trust you as far as we can throw you.'"
Using DRM does not to prevent piracy. Just like there will always be stealing, murder, and generally nasty behavior in the world, people will never stop cracking games and hosting those files online. "PC games always have and always will be pirated, cracked, modded and what have you," he said. "That is the nature of the PC as a platform; you can never get around this problem."
Sundberg's solution is to offer a carrot rather than wield a big DRM stick. "My solution to the problem is to start designing games for the PC player, and award PC players for being part of the community of your game and for staying connected to you - not forcing them," he said. "If you continuously tell the player that you care about their opinions, and appreciate their investment, you will lower the amount of bootleg copies."
I don't know about you, but that sounds like a fine strategy. Better than having to deal with terrible DRM servers always going down, anyway. The best part is that Sundberg is willing to put his job on the line for you, the customer:
"We don't have much choice, as the publisher owns the IP, but I can assure you we would go down screaming before anything like this ends up in any Avalanche game."