For the PC Gamers out there, DRM has been a big issue in the past years. Starting with the Settlers 7 Beta, Ubisoft is changing their DRM forecast to cloudy . In future Ubisoft PC titles, including Assassin’s Creed II, players will be required to log into their Ubi.com account each time they launch the game. That means that you’ll always need to be connected to the internet to play your games. Although this is where most of the comment raging will happen, I think the bigger issue is that gamers will have to have a ubi.com account (and remember their password!). Do gamers want an EA account, a UBI.com account, a GameSpy account or the myriad of accounts that each publisher or multiplayer provider could set up?
We’ve contacted Ubisoft as to whether the authentication will be necessary with the Steam, Direct2Drive and Impulse versions of their titles.
Update: Ubisoft has responded to the outcry:
“Ubisoft’s number one goal is to provide added value that will facilitate and enrich the gaming experience of our PC customers. The Settlers 7 beta version is enabling players to discover that this platform empowers them to install the game on as many PCs as they wish, to synchronise saved games online so that gameplay can be continued from where they left off (from any computer with an installed version of the game) and frees them from needing a CD/DVD in order to play.
“The platform requires a permanent Internet connection. We know this choice is controversial but we feel is justified by the gameplay advantages offered by the system and because most PCs are already connected to the Internet. This platform also offers protection against piracy, an important business element for Ubisoft and for the PC market in general as piracy has an important impact on this market.
“Any initiative that allows us to lower the impact of piracy on our PC games will also allow us to concentrate further effort on the creation and expansion of our intellectual properties for the PC – our goal is to deliver the best gaming experience to our customers.”