Monday, March 13, 2006

Starforce Boycott, Revisited

A few posts back, I referenced a call among PC gamers to boycott games laced with Starforce protection, but was unsure whether it was time to jump on the bandwagon or not.

Now I'm sure.

(Via BoingBoing)

Turns out that Stardock (the makers of gaming and utility titles such as GalCiv, Astral Master, WindowBlinds, and ObjectDock) decided to release its recent title Galactic Civilizations 2: Dread Lords without copy protection. Rather than assuming that all of its cutomers are criminals, Stardock chose to place a little bit of trust in us and release this game free of crippling DRM {cough}Starforce{cough}. In their own words:

What we do is provide a serial # that users can choose to enter when they install and use that unique serial # to download free and frequent updates.

Our license allows you to install the game onto as many machines that you own that you want as long as only one copy is being used at once. How many sales are lost because people want to have a game on their laptop and desktop and don't want to drag CDs around so choose not to buy the game?


In response, a moderator of Starforce's message board posted a link to downloadable pirated torrents of the game.

So, one company does the right thing and stands by its customers... another promotes illegal methods in an attempt to punish them. Guess who joins my list of companies to avoid, and guess what game I'll be buying as soon as opportunity permits?

Until Starforce straightens up their act, no games protected by their DRM will be knowingly added to my collection. It's not much, but it's what I can do.

Stay tuned, I'm sure there will be more...

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